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!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

2014 Q3 FAL 3 for 3 and Amish-ish

A much better finish with all of my goals met this quarter.   I'm so rusty at linking up for the party - it's been so long I've kind of forgotten how! Good thing Katy spells it out for us so nicely. 

Don't be confused about the fact that TWO of the quilts look SUPER SIMILAR.  That's because they are companion quilts for the Michael Miller Challenge, Goal Setting Post found HERE

A Burst of Amish-ish

I've been in a bit of a pause lately (aka burn out).  When my friend Anne came over for a basting party and I saw her quilt entry for the upcoming community exhibition of Amish: The Modern Muse at the San Jose Quilt and Textile museum it sparked a frenzy of late nights and IG crowdsourcing.  
(the kona brown for binding on the left won out)

I was sad about missing out on such a wonderful opportunity and had been thinking about what to make, designing QDAD with it in mind, buying solids to make it but doing nothing about it.

Feels so good to be in the thick of things rather than the sidelines.

I'll share more but the clock is a tickin' and I've got sewing to do.

One deadline at a time.  I've got a stack of HST with my IGmini partner's name all over them.

Today was my 45th QDAD design and I'm hoping to make some of them into actual quilts one day, maybe even for the swap.   The group is on facebook Quilt Design A Day.

Friday, September 26, 2014

a Finish and a Top

Finally a Finish

They feel few and far between but today I've got one!
My coworker's retirement party is on Tuesday night so I'm please to have the quilt done and ready to give to her.  I've got enough IOU gifts haunting me - ugh! Nothing personal -really - just not enough time in the day.
One of my more recent tools purchases was this lovely 16.5" and the dark/light cutting mat.   Both came in very handy for squaring up.  Getting to the point of trimming was not the journey I'd planned for. 

The FMQ was suppose to be a quick stipple. Torture I tell you.   I now think the culprit was a wrong-type needle, replaced by a recycled correct-type-but-bad needle followed finally by a wonderfully correct and new needle - there was nothing simple or quick about it.

Glam Clam Top 

Near final layout   I was worried about finding space in my house to layout the final parts and was fortunate to use the big design wall at intrepid thread - thank you Julie !  
Since the entire quilt was from stash and the remaining cut clams lacked the color variation I needed, there was a bit of fabric shopping that took place while I was there :)  Now I have the beginnings of a mostly mustard-yellow perpetual glam clam quilt.  

I brought the top with me to breakfast at the yacht harbor thinking that it would be fun to photograph.  We couldn't find a ledge or bench to stand on and then the wind picked up just enough to shrink-wrap my good humored helpers.  Happy to have this shot. 

Linking up to Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts and TGIF at Glory Be Quilter.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

GlamClam workshop

Glamming it Up late into the Night

12" clams half way to a King
The SBAMQG workshop last night was so much fun with Latifah.  Seeing all of the fabric and layout choices was great.  I was tempted to tone it down because I do love the look of the samples she brought that include a lot of solids and really feature the print pops but in the end the "everything including the kitchen sink" scrappy was most authentic for me.
Latifah and I - such an honor to meet her!

Here's me and my progress spreading out and taking over the entire table.  Linking up to WIP Wednesday with Lee at Freshly Pieced and Let's Bee Social.
Keeping it all straight took a few misses on my part, mixing up which arch to sew the next clam into.  I finally discovered that if I placed the next one on the bed of my machine before cutting the thread to disconnect the one I just finished, there was little chance of accidentally grabbing the wrong on to sew it to. 
Demo and tips at the beginning of the workshop to get us all on the right track.  We're so lucky to have such a wonderful space in the Solaris room to create and learn in with friends.
This one really appeals to me and I just might have to create something similar with the perpetual clams that I'm sure to have.  So Much Fun!!!

Quilting Demo

On Wednesday afternoon i got to go to the fair and demo with a few of the ladies in my PVQA small quilt group The Fabric Hounds. We made great progress (and a huge mess) both doing piecing and appliqué of puppies which the kids especially liked. 
My safety radar is fine tuned from spending time with my baby grand girl. It came in handy because working with sharp pointy things in public requires extra caution.
These gals are so much fun!
I'm hoping that doing a demo and going to the County Fair becomes an annual event.  When I was a kid I had my 4-H sewing on display and then chaperoned when my boys were in Elementary school but haven't been since.  

Look who's one 

 The seahorse I picked up from the Monterey Bay Aquarium gift shop was a big hit.
Lots of Excitement as the clock strikes her "birth-time"
After the fair I went with my family to a yummy dinner at Choclate downtown and for Penny Icecream after. 
Baked Pasta Rosettes 
Today is her beach party to celebrate with friends and family and it's a beautiful day! Hope you're having a fun and full weekend too.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Stratas and a Star

Where I was Headed....

Playing on the Workshop Design Wall 
When I have time (chuckle) I'm definitely going to get back to the direction this layout was headed.  During the workshop with Mary Tabar yesterday, she encouraged us to find our own design.  She brought loads of beautiful quilts as well as sample sheets, most of which were symmetrical.  I was feeling asymmetrical.  

The possibilities were a bit overwhelming because their are so many to choose just one.   Shortly before pack up,  I came to the realization that for my current situation, I needed to land on a layout that (for the most part) joined pieced edges to the lengthwise strip or solid triangle rather than the slower process of a chevron or matched stratas.

So many bias cut pieced seems
Thanks to the invasion of the bee fabric and a helping hand of a workshop mate , a star was born. I kept going when I got home. My co-worker is retiring in a couple of weeks and I thought this class was perfect timing to create a traditional quilt using old and new fabric as part of the Purge .  She likes flower, to garden and has traditional taste.

...Where I Ended UP

Late Night Pic: The black has tiny reddish dots 
With my "no inherent sense of direction" issue, on-point tricks me a bit but I was drawn there and wanted it to be challenging enough to hold my interest.

Twas the night before..

Bunting does double duty 
The class instructions asked that we do some prep ahead of time to allow us to jump right into design when we arrived.  I'd chosen my fabrics but had left the cutting, strip piecing and pressing until - well, the night before :).  Thank goodness for IG and the encouragement of #fridaynightsewalong.

More Remain than were Used
The stack of leftover parts is enough for another (or maybe two) quilts in my future.  Wish I could play with the ideas bouncing around in my head but I'm just going to be pleased that I came away from the weekend well on my way to finishing a quilt for my co-worker's retirement gift.  Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced 

Monday, September 1, 2014

BIG, Mini and a Goal

Glam Clam Workshop Prep

Playing with Parts on the Design Wall
The Glam Clam has been on my bucket list ever since I started drooling over the ones I've seen on flickr and posted on blogs.  I'm thrilled that our SBAMQG has invited Latifa Saafir for a workshop in a few weeks.  They've booked the workspace long into the night as well so I want to come prepared and make the most of 12 hours of pure indulgence. 
Focused Scrappy - Loving my boarded stash 
She has the pattern instructions and templates for 4", 6", 8" and 12" available for free on Craftsy.  One of the things that I'm drawn to about this design is the variety of looks that it takes on depending on fabric choices and placement.  I know that statement could really apply to ANY quilt, but it's especially true for me in this one.
My Sewing Room is a HUGE Mess
I'm GOING BIG, with not only the 12" block but with a King Size.  It's all about scale and the fact that if I'm finally going to make one, I'd better get to sleep under it when I'm done!
Fussy cutting is not efficient but sometime you just got to.
My stash is - well, you know, basically bursting.  The first inspiration fabric line that I thought of was Lucky Penny and any other Alison Glass I own (love her).  Turns out the AMH Field Study I've been hoarding plays well as does Kaffe (the first designer I collected).  Because this is the time to use my large scale floral, I tossed in some Amy Butler and miscellaneous Art Gallery.   Linking up to Sunday Stash with Molli Sparkles who's having a blogiversary, congrats!


finding "My People"
Other than swapping at our MQG, I haven't done any in far too long.  It's fun finding out who's in my group and discovering new people and rediscover some old friends.  Hopefully I learned my lesson from flickr and the ridiculous juggling of over commitments when I started there and won't fall into the same.  I'm capitolaquilter on IG as well so come say hi. 

ALYOF September Goal

Redwood Grove Wedding Quilt
One of the other things that I did regularly and has recently fallen to the waist side along with swapping has been linky parties.  I miss them too!  Here's my ALYOF September goal.

Wine Gift Bag  - a Finish

Trudging along with WIPS can get depressing even when you like the projects you're working on.   This little bag was exactly the boost I needed.  Starting something new doesn't sound like a fix for the blues but this quick finish felt great.  Hubby and I went to a friend's birthday party last weekend. The woodgrain fabric lined with wine grapes from my stash was stop on. 

Linking up to Freshly Pieced WIP Wednesday, Can I get a Whoop Whoop? and Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

QDAD and The Purge

QDAD - Lurker no more
QDAD 8.16 block repeat/rotate 2x3 grid
Creating virtual quilts won't use up my stash but I'm pretty sure it'll spark a creative frenzy that makes me want to sew!    About six months ago I joined the Facebook group QDAD created by my friend Anne@ PlayCrafts .  Until today I'd been a lurker member (which is actually allowed in this no rules group).  

I've got 15-30 minutes a day to spare (especially if I don't play candy crush on my phone) and I've been wanting to make my own quilt designs and join the fun - but had been letting the lack of tools stop me (although I do own crayons/pencils & paper).  After listening to Anne's MQG webinar on Wednesday night, I decided to stop making excuses and give the free software inkscape a try.
QDAD 8.16 - my very first one
The learning curve is huge but that's not stopping me either.  Day one of the "Getting Started" challenge was a nine-patch so I made one that I like pretty well.  I wanted to see what happens with a repeat and rotate of the block so I dumped it into word as an image and took a screen shot picture. Once I get my head wrapped around the program I won't have to resort to such ridiculous methods.


I've already done some major purging of fabric that I'm no longer in love with or simply felt would better suited to someone with more time to make projects from it than me.

Despite the trunk load of my stash that I passed along for pennies on the dollar at the yard sale and the remaining that I donate to my local guild, there is no shortage of fabric around these parts.
Five buckets turned to just this little bit after the sale/donation
Linking up to Stitched in Color for The Purge.  She's put together really great ideas about how to deal - and a support group to help those who have trouble letting go (cough, cough).

In a couple of weeks I'll be taking a workshop from Mary Tabor called WaterColor Quilt.  We get to choose and cut and sew our strips ahead (yeah) and can expect to leave with a top in hand.  Because I wanted to make a quilt to give to my co-worker as a retirement gift next month, the timing is just perfect.
*The darks and bees are actually very well loved

And best of all, because it calls for four fabrics 2 yards each (light, medium, dark florals and a background)- it's going to make a dent in my stash.   And second best of all, because they are only 1" once sewn I'm able to use floral prints that aren't necessarily favorites and PURGE.

When my hubby walked in the room he asked what the stack was for and I told him about the workshop.  His response was "so it's suppose to be fabric that doesn't go together at all?"  I laughed and he's kind of right - or at least that's what I'm counting on.

I'll share the top in a future post and you can tell me if he was right.