Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Fresh Sewing Day and December 2014 aLYOF Goal

Fresh Sewing Day - How is it December?

IG mini Swap
Turns out that taking a picture of a mini by yourself is more difficult than I thought.  I'm constantly challenged with getting a decent photo of my larger quilts that require two sets of hands but at least those drape well.
A quick stop at the beach for fabulous natural lighting paid off.  The seagulls were missing the tourists and one in particular was quite the poser.  Fortunately, nobody pooped :) Following the IG feed has been fun now that packages are arriving - fingers crossed! 
That's me on the right
Although two finished quilts for the month felt like a huge accomplishment, it also meant that not a lot else got done.  There was sewing involved in the crafting of my clever slippers for the SBA MQG PJ Party and slipper contest so I'm including them.  And yes, those are Munki Munki's with adorable Heather Ross fabric I've got on.
Redwood Grove Wedding Quilt
I just shared the finish and gifting of this one last post so I'll include a different photo and them looking down at the quilt - such an adorable couple. 

aLYOF December Goal

Now for what's on my plate for December (pun intended).  I'm sticking with items from my Q4 2014 FAL goals to double dip so I'm serving up Veggies and linking up at aLYOF with Melissa and Shanna.  I'm planning on making a gift. Linking up to WIP Wednesday and Let's Bee Social.

Speaking of the Finish Along - did you hear it's headed to New Zealand with Adrianne for 2015?  I started way, way back in the beginning here in the USA with Rhonda 2012, kept up pretty good with Leanne 2013 when it jumped over to neighboring Canada,  and have tried really hard to hold on with Katy in the UK this year.  No matter if I link up every quarter or get all my goals met, I still like to visit other participants to see their progress and send a big huge thank you to the hosts of FAL past, present and future. 

Here's hoping for some Holiday Handmade.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Redwood Grove quilt

Redwood Grove Wedding Quilt

With the help of late night marathon sewing at our recent SBAMQG Quilt Retreat and a bit luck, Redwood Grove has been gifted.   I'd hoped to complete it there but instead brought it home with about 1/3 FMQ done and kept going.
I managed to enlarge and finish the wedding quilt for my niece and her husband and deliver it in person at Thanksgiving - well before their first anniversary and in time for Finish it Up Friday and Whoop Whoop linky parties the aLYOF November goal and 2014 FALQ4 deadlines.   
For the binding, I used two similar fabrics (the green and the blue/green) that were in the quilt and included a pop out of the dark bamboo fabric in just one spot.  Also tossed here and there in the quilt you'll find some brighter rust because as much as I tried to narrow the palette to a cool calm one they had requested, I couldn't help myself.  
Basting at 3am on the floor of the workroom while most of the other attendees at the retreat were fast asleep.  Fortunately there were a couple of other hard core worker bees still at it and they were nice enough to help me manage this beast.   After adding two rows to the side and spicing in another 12" to the bottom the final size is 91"x 87" to give a better drape on their queen bed. 
Detail of Erik's Quilt
Working from stash felt good and I have quite a large batik collection that I still like despite not having added to it in awhile.  To give their quilt a touch of sentiment and cousins loving, I incorporated the fabrics that I used for the two quilts that I had previously made for my sons.    
Kyle's Quilt
My Q4 FAL 2014 goals are now at 2/7 with the finish of my IGmini swap quilt.  It'll be mailed off in a few days and I had better remember to take a photo of it bound.  This shot is from the retreat (matchstick at midnight) as well and I just love the lashes of Aurifil that were created.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

FanGirl: Houston Festival part 1

Surrounded by Talent and Inspiration 

Left to Right: Victoria Findlay Wolfe  - let us take a peak at her new book, it's amazing!,  Anita Grossman Solomon - made me blush when she recognized me and told the audience of her open studio about the Old Italian Block quilt I made,  Jenny Doan - as perky in person as on youtube- and Karlee Porter  - entertained beyond words at her graffiti quilting demo and posted the most adorable obligatory selfie on her blog where you can find me waving in the far left. 
Go Ahead and call me a Fangirl 
I knew that going to Houston Festival for the first time would be overwhelming but wasn't exactly sure what to expect.   Once I caught my breath from being star struck - I took off my shy hat and became a full blown Fangirl.  How could I not?  Everyone was so incredibly sweet and happy to pose (or at least they put on a good act).  
Me, Alex, Stephanie, Elena
Above: Alex Voronelli and Elena Gregotti of Aurifil with Stephanie Ruyle and I.

My sister Sheryl and I (Yeah!) 
The Houston MQG had a wonderful meet up on Saturday night (thank you ladies!!) and I won this FQ bundle along with a huge swag bag that barely fit on the plane!  I was one of "those people" with a shoulder bag stuffed bigger than my carryon suitcase. 

FQ Bundle Door Prize to go with my Swag Bag 
I turned my sister on to Oakshott - she's now as hooked as I am so we "had to" stop the Pinwheel booth and pick up a little more each day at the show.
Beautiful Oakshott splurge (in terrible hotel lighting)

The weather was so nice with a gorgeous sunset from our hotel room without fail every night.   We also got to visit with my niece which was such a treat. 

Back at home, we had the first rain in seemingly forever on Halloween.  That didn't stop the fun for my adorable grand daughter.  She was a wee Baby Koa last year with her Pond parents too little to remember, but this time she got to toddle all over and even got her picture in the local newspaper.
2013 Halloween Costumes
2014 Monarch Butterfly and her Eucalyptus purse
Part 2 will include actual quilts from the Festival, I promise!

Between unpacking from Houston and packing for our MQG retreat tomorrow there hasn't been a ton of sewing but I did manage to gather my WIP projects to take along with what just may be another challenge under the wire entry for Michael Miller Cotton Couture:

stash pull and challenge F8 bundle
My hope is to recolor a recent QDAD design and use the fabric above to bring it to life.
QDAD 11.10.2014 
finish up the Redwood Grove wedding quilt before Thanksgiving, the IGswap mini by mailing deadline and also work on my block contribution for QuiltCon charity.  

Linking up to Lee at Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Modern

Capitola Crossing

I really appreciate Amy's definition of Modern for the Festival - she says ' modern to you, is modern to me"  With that non-judgey spirit in mind I'm entering Capitola Crossing to the linky party.  In all honesty, I think it's pretty special that it was inspired by the Amish Railroad Crossing quilt from 1930

Triangle on a roll - the closest that I get to paper piecing!
Mock up color placement on the design board was a fun step.

The bright colors were chosen to represent the Begonia Festival and the one block mini reflects the small 2 square mile size of town and the railroad that runs through it.

My newish ruler came in so handy trimming up.   Although not a perfectionist (sort of an anti-perfectionist truth be told)  I didn't want to cut too many tips.  

I rarely (read: almost never) mark anything.  The color change is subtle but there are two different threads used inside and out of the chalk line. 

This is as close to matchstick as I've come with a wider spacing for the pink.  Linking up to Blogger's Quilt Festival - Modern category and to ALYOF October Finish Party.

Started September 28, 2014
Finished October 4, 2014
Size: 28"x28"
Kona and Cotton Couture Solids
Bamboo Batting
Aurifil 50wt piecing 40wt quilting

Previous Blogger's Quilt Festival Entries: 

Spring 2014
Giant X-Plus  - Scrappy
Rip Tide - ROYGBIV

Fall 2013
Tassels - Group/Bee

Fall 2012
Old Italian Block - Scrap/ROYGBIV/Bed

Spring 2012
Catalyst (aka Mod Mosaic) - my first time to participate 

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Small Quilt Category

Look Who's Walking

Inspired by the Lattice quilt ca. 1930 Haven Kansas, I made this quilt as an entry for a juried exhibit that our local MQG challenge is participating in next month called Amish: The Modern Muse.  Nine days start to finish was a whirlwind.

I love scrappy and graphic but have very little experience working in solids or straight line quilting, so it was indeed challenging. When I was quilting this we had record breaking heatwave and it was suffocatingly hot in my sewing room so I migrated out into the living room. 

Because I waited to the last minute to start and was down to the wire with the deadline, there are areas where the intersections don't quite meet up.  Although I wholeheartedly embrace the philosophy of Perfectly Imperfect, if I could turn back the clock I'd redo the joints that are distractingly misaligned.   I'll share a close up of where they did match and spare you the eyesore. Changing up the thread color and path of the stitch line at whim was tricky but worth it.

It was a fine line between paying tribute to the original quilt and putting my own spin on it so that it wasn't simply a replica but rather an interpretation of.

A quick trip to the LQS to find the perfect brown binding (thank you Hart's  Fabric for your impressive Kona selection)- the one on the left was closest to the color used on the inspiration quilt. 

Choosing which quilt for the Festival was difficult because I really cherish those that came before.   Linking up to Fall 2014 Blogger's Quilt Festival - Small Quilt Category 

Started September 26, 2014
Finished October 5, 2014
Size 40x49
Kona and Cotton Couture Solids, Cotton & Steel
Bamboo Batting
Aurifil 50wt pieced and 40wt quilted
by me on my home machine, BabyLock Symphony

Previous Blogger's Quilt Festival Entries: 

Spring 2014
Giant X-Plus  - Scrappy
Rip Tide - ROYGBIV

Fall 2013
Tassels - Group/Bee

Fall 2012
Old Italian Block - Scrap/ROYGBIV/Bed

Spring 2012
Catalyst (aka Mod Mosaic) - my first time to participate 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Final Quarter 2014

1. IG mini swap. 2. King Clam 3. Improv 4. Greek plus puss 5. Redwood Grove 6. Alternative Grid 7. Veggies 

Last quarter I was able to finish all three items.  Had this linky been a few days ago I could have included my Amish: The Modern Muse entries but now they fall happily into the finished category.  Fingers (and toes) crossed that they are chosen to hang in the community exhibition.  I learned so much and pushed myself really far on both of these.  Wish I'd taken better photos before submitting them:
Look Who's Walking
I was terrified of the high contrast thread breaking across the ribbons but that ends up being one of my favorite elements.  Also, the change up of thread color was super fun.

The back shows the quilting pretty well and the binding color I love with both sides. 
Capitola Crossing
Close Up
This is the closest I've come to matchstick and it was kind of fun - on a mini!  I had considered hand stitching with Aurifil 12 wool the center "belly button" and decided to leave it as is.

Linking up to FAL Q4 Goal setting party at The Little Thistle and WIP Wednesday with Freshly Pieced and Let's Bee Social and Finish It Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.  

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

a SOLID plan

I've never made a quilt with only solids before and it's about time.  There have been blocks for bees and swap placemats, but not a quilt.  Here's my October aLYOF goal, a mini.  
HST all sewn and the rest is a mock up
It had better get done this month because I hit submit on the entry form to hopefully have it at the Community Exhibition Amish: A Modern Muse.  Titled "Capitola Crossing" instead of my catch-all Amish-ish I'm super excited about paying tribute to the little town I'm lucky to live in.
The original inspiration, a quilt from 1930 has a four block layout which I set out to duplicate and went into major mass production of HST to get the parts made. But in the end, the single RR was more fitting to represent the tiny 2 mile radius and the trestle that runs through.
62nd annual Begonia Festival August 2014
The upside is that I'm all set to make something amazing for my IGminiswap partner with the extras and I've got my heart set on a new Travel Handmade to take to Houston later this month - or at least to QuiltCon in February. 

Bling Solid

If you look closely at the last two ribbons you'll see that I added a bit of Cotton & Steel basics for a subtle bit of sparkle.  Here's a shot of one version of where I was headed earlier in the auditioning phase:
So many choices - I love that step
I also narrowed the with of the crosses for a more delicate girly look than the original Amish inspiration quilt.   My extra parts seen to the left are much fewer. 
Linking up to Fresh Sewing Day at Lily's Quilts after a much too long of a break (April, yikes).   I may try and recreate the missing mosaics for my flickr album to fill the gap.  
Don't you love how the King Clam looks the same size as my new mini?

Here's the proof that I've been working with solids.  I toss all my bits to the floor as I'm working and "combed" them up before vacuuming resulting in this heap.  Pretty sure my Dyson was not designed for this kind of mess.

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced - check out the Round Up beauty she's been creating, gasp!