Thursday, February 27, 2014

Squeezed some in here & there...

Well, it's been a bit since I've been on here...  That would be changing jobs, and taking time to balance my new job responsibilities while I learn an entirely new way of nursing.  From the hospital to home care is a major change people!  Expectations, time commitment, creating relationships with new colleagues and clients.  I've been tired, and finding it difficult to get to sew.  Let me say, that sewing is therapeutic for me, so not sewing has not been good for me.
I've squeezed some in here & there:

For do. Good Stitches Humility Circle that I participate in we have completed and sent two quilts up to the reservation since November!  The January block is below, and we utilized this tutorial: Freshly Pieced Ribbon Star Block Tutorial

I participated in the first Kate Spain Charm Swap on Flickr in the fall.  My charms sat all wilting, and needed to be sewn together!  It was sad.  So I spread them out to look & discover how to, what to do with them all.  I decided I did not want to cut them any smaller so each fabric could be happily seen.  So, in keeping with that decision I sewed them together in blocks of 4.  This is what I've got so far.

The swap on Flickr included Kate Spain fabrics from all of her collections excluding holiday collections.  I then purchased the Sunnyside Jelly Roll from a cute little Etsy shop: Handmade is Heartmade.  Thinking I will frame each block of four in white possibly, and then frame all of those in with another solid color.  After that I will use the jelly roll as an additional mixed up lovely border.

Also have gotten started on two blocks of the month:

So far, I had issues with the Sugar Block February BOM, I haven't completed January yet.  My seams are like 1/8" as the points of the diamond squares would have all been cut off, that was a bit depressing to me...  I'm not clear on what I did incorrectly, and haven't received great feedback on the flickr group site... I surely don't want to be wasting that gorgeous Tula Pink fabric!
The Vice Versa BOM is 2 blocks- one set of directions to make the block, and then the inverse of the block.  Easy, clear directions with an excellent result.  Gives me faith, especially after the failure the Sugar Block turned out to be...
There's more, but I've got to get going.
I sent a quilt off to be longarmed by Abby at Latimer Lane.  YAY!!


Saturday, November 30, 2013

Quilting & Joy

Well, I do have Christmas songs drifting through my mind:

Comfort & Joy

Quilting & Joy!
So, on that fabulous note I hereby introduce you to the January blocks for the Humility Circle of do. Good Stitches.
Our quilt host, Vickey sent us the following:

Our quilts will be going to the residents of the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. A friend actually got me involved in this worthwhile cause. For those of you who are unaware the Pine Ridge Reservations houses approximately 18,000 Native Americans. The reservation is stricken with alcoholism and poverty. The unemployment rate on the reservation is 80 percent. One in every four children on the reservation will be born with fetal alcohol syndrome. Many of the homes are nothing more than shacks with no heat or electric. Some may ask why these people would not leave the reservation but we all know how difficult it is to break free from generations of this type of behavior.
I chose the name Humility because I was told in Native American culture to give a blanket shows Humility. Our quilts will go to those in need in all stages of life but the social worker who delivers these is aware that our focus is more toward the children and teens. 
Anyhoo, ten of us make two blocks each month as posted on our Flickr page, and it is truly exciting, and I am learning lots, and introducing new blocks into my repertoire.
Vickey blogs over at Gingersnaps Quilts.  A sweet site.  I'm going to follow her pillow case tutorial when I complete the quilt for our guest room.

Our quilter asked us to make two blocks from the Autumn Star Quilt Block from Fresh Lemon Quilts.  Specifications included colors: aqua, blues, gray, and white.  The first block was trickier than the second.  I had a harder time cutting the inner star points equally, but managed to figure it out by finishing the block.  The next inner star points are more equal as I used the 45 degree angle mark on my ruler to line up with the diagonal seam and then I cut half of what needed to be trimmed, rotated to the other two sides and cut half again, trimming to a 2.5" square.  Confused?  Feel free to ask for more specifics.  I did find a couple helpful resources including fellow quilters of the Humility Circle.

Back at the end of October, and now it's the end of November, I made this Vera Bag put out by Green Bee.  I purchased it from Pink Chalk Fabrics.  I didn't fully appreciate the stiffness of the fusible interfacing, and I got a couple bubbles and wrinkles that have disappeared while it's been hanging on my doorknob for a month now.  Hoping to use it, as the Go Anywhere I use now is most awesome, but heavy for my current shoulder/neck issue.  This one is a bit smaller with a double inner pocket that is stitched to fit my phone perfectly.

More to come soon, as I've been sewing away over here.

Tidings of Quilting and Joy!!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Cultivating Creativity & Peace

Happy to be sleeping under my fabulous Swoon quilt!  Below is what I received back from Abby at Latimer Lane.  I chose the Cotton Seed edge to edge design, and I think it looks great!  It got nice & crinkly after washing.

The Machine Binding Tutorial from Cluck Cluck Sew saved me & my quilts from a horrid frame job.  See Below:

Then, because the baby has been born-  Happy Birthday Noah!!  I started & finished a baby quilt from my bestest friend Kim:

I hope Noah gets lots of snuggling done in this quilt!  My favorite block is the wonky star with the fussy cut whale in the center.  I had success again with the binding!  Phew, wiping sweat from brow...

Puppy paw prints in the morning snow!
Puppy play by the fire

In my life, outside of quilting, or maybe because of the peace I feel when quilting I have decided to change my job.  I am leaving the acute care setting of the hospital to start caring for people in the comfort of their own homes.  I am excited to bring the peace I have cultivated at home to my job!
I've been a cardiac nurse for over 6 years in the chaos of the hospital setting, and look forward to a slower pace.  I no longer appreciate my 13-hour shift and the amount of energy it takes to go strong for that long!  Wish me luck, this is a big change, but truly an exciting one.  Leaving my long-time friends will be so hard, but of course I anticipate seeing them away from the hospital.

Linking up with Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


     I completed my first paper-pieced project!  Woot!  Via Connecting Threads Incredible Tutorial, for      the Fussy Square Swap on Flickr hosted by Amanda at What the Bobbin.  This holiday swap has been inspiring, motivating!  I printed the template out Amanda has up on Google docs, and attempted to figure it out with no tutorial, which ended in failure- twice.  Then I checked out the video Amanda recommends, but I needed even more help- I've never done this before.  I needed tips and advice for the very beginner.  The Connecting Threads tutorial did the trick don't you think??

I'm doing the last bit of the iPernity Holiday Mug Rug Swap as well.  The binding.  The last bit of sewing on the binding trips me up a lot, wishing myself some luck.  The binding will not get me down this time!
Well, the binding got me down a little...

My swoon quilt is on its way back to me from being quilted by Abby at Latimer Lane.  She is based in Utah, which is where I was born, and a lot of my dad's family lives.  I'm excited for the arrival of the quilt back into my home.  I suppose I should be working on getting the binding ready, eh??  Must master binding.  Must master binding.  That sounds a little weird.  You know what I mean though, I hope!

My new fave tea!
Linking up with: Quilt Story and Freemotion by the River and Blossom Heart Quilts and I have to say

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

What's up over here...

Hellooooo out there....
Linking up with Purse Palooza over at Sew Sweetness!  I made this Go Anywhere Bag from Noodlehead's Pattern Shop. It is a fabulously easy pattern to follow what with inner and exterior pockets, pleats, and magnetic snaps!

I use my Go Anywhere bag, the red one that I've posted about earlier as literally my go anywhere bag.  I can stuff it to the max with knitting, reading, and snacks as needed, or pull out weight for errands and being on the go.  I am a nurse, so I keep my stethoscope in the back pocket so I have it at work, and at home.  I do use it occasionally at home to check blood pressures...

A friend of mine was examining the bag, and commented that it had enough pockets to be a good diaper bag too.

This is the Kate Spain fabric I have to cut into charm squares for the Kate Spain Charm Swap over at Quilts From My Crayon Box.   Follow her blog if you are a Kate Spain fan, as she may do another Kate Spain swap in the spring.

Wanting to cut and mail this by Thursday as I go to visit my family this Friday for a few days.

This is a sneak peak of a mug rug I am making for  a swap on  I guess Ipernity is similar to flickr, but with a different supposedly more friendly layout...
Anyway, just practicing with color combos, stitching, and making an impact in a small space!

Hoping I have identified what my partner will appreciate from looking at her prior posts and a mosaic she made of mug rugs she appreciates.

FYI- I sent my Swoon quilt off to be quilted!

Below are several purchases, but not all that I've made in the past two weeks.  The one to the left is from Joann's and Pink Castle Fabric's.  I bought fabric to make the Figure Eight Scarf by Anna Marie Horner from Pink Castle- I'm just trying to decide if I want it as wide as the pattern suggests...

Looking forward to trying the Vera Bag as reviewed from the Sew Sweetness Purse Palooza.  I've got some fabric in mind.

These additional fabric purchases at the end are mostly to contribute to the low-volume quilt I am working on.
Still sewing over here, hope you are too!

Monday, October 14, 2013

A 4th Quarter Finish-A-Long List

Coming up with a list of items to move forward on...

First, of course, includes the Swoon Quilt for our bedroom:
I just completed the last block and there it rests on our bed for me to decide the space between blocks, borders etc, so it fits our bed- yes, I'm taking into consideration shrinkage from quilting.

I would like to complete the sashing & borders, communicate with & decide on a longarmer extraordinaire, and get the quilt ready and sent per their specifications.  Then, yes, I think I can  get it bound and on the bed! (depending on the longarmer's schedule)  As long as I get it back by early to mid December, this should work.  I think, it depends on how much procrastination happens at each step in the process...

Then I've started my version of a low-volume quilt for our guest room- needs lots of love in there.  Bare  walls, bare bedding, bare windows, bare, bare did I say bare yet?

Soooo, I am going with ideas inspired from Fresh Lemon Quilts finished Solstice Star quilt.  I'm doing strips, just waiting for more fabric to arrive to continue onward & then I will do a column of stars.  The first star up there is from Fresh Lemon Quilts 2 Color Star Tutorial, which is easy-peasy following her directions and pictures.  From doing the Swoon blocks I found it easier not to cut the 3x3 pieces diagonally, but just sew them like any half-square triangle starting as a square and then cutting diagonally between the quarter inch seams.

I would like to complete piecing this one with the low-volume fabric I await to arrive from Hawthorne Threads &  I think I'll have to buy more fabric as well, I am trying not to repeat fabric choices and this will be Queen size!  So this one I would like to also get to a longarmer for quilting-just too big for my machine or for me or for me & my machine.   I've never sent a quilt to a longarmer to be completed.  I've never bound larger than a twin-size & I seem to be having difficulties binding lately.  That last bit of finishing the binding... and nice corners, and sometimes just the long straight-away gets too thick...  I'll keep learning that's to be sure.

Giant Vintage Star Quilt- Yup, needs just a titch more quilting, then bound.

Started from the Star Bright Quilt from Swim Bike Quilt Tutorial with modifications or really additions!  I've got to decide on what is next.  Blue?  Deep blue fading to low volume blue and then low volume yellow then be done??  Or keep it deep & dark?

Another, but even larger Giant Vintage Star Quilt for a friend of mine to snuggle up in.  Yes, needs to be pieced then all the rest of it!

Fabric pulled for an off center Lonestar Quilt for my son, inspired by the quilt I made for him when he was just a baby, and that has been well loved.

7.  Make nautical themed baby quilt for my friend's favorite cousin.  Have some of the fabric...

8.  Make these hand-pieced blocks into a wallhanging for my to-be mother-in-law.  She hand-pieced them long-ago and when giving me ALL of the fabric she has collected over the years we saw these, and I offered to make them into something for her.

Linking up with the 2013 Quarter 4 Quilt-A-Long with Leanne from She Can Quilt.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Works in Progress (WIP)

Soooo,  I've really been working on this:
 My craft table!  Made via a tutorial from Organize & Decorate Everything!!  Ikea no longer had the table top she suggested so I got the Linmon 59" with the Walmart bookshelves.  My man is going to screw the top onto the bookshelves.  I think I will add contact paper to the brown side of the bookshelves, so it's prettier!!  I'm putting current projects that I am working on and all the paraphernalia that goes with them in each of the drawers underneath the table.

My Swoon Blocks!

This is my current Swoon block that I am working on, I was getting tired of cutting fabric on the floor... So I worked on acquiring all the parts to the craft table and puttting it all together.  I did cut some more fabric from my very own bolt, yes I said BOLT, of solid Bella white fabric.  So to the left there are my cuttings and partial piecings...  That's my 6th swoon block of 9 that need to be sewn.  I'm intentionally having blue in each block.  Why?  Cuz I like blue for the bedroom.

 And still working on my giant star quilt.  Just completing the quilting now!!  Minky on the back does make it a little more slow-going...

My local quilt shop: The Quilting Studio in Longmont, Colorado is closing their doors, so I got all the products above on 20% discount.  Nice to help by purchasing stock, sad too though...

Linking up with Freshly Pieced and the Small Blog Meet at Lily's Quilts.