A Two-Fer

Gretchen & I had a date with the long arm on Sunday and I had two quilts ready to go – my Wishes and Mystery quilts.  It took me a while to get my Wishes quilt loaded and the computer programmed before I could get the Mystery quilt loaded and programmed as well.
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All in all, the two quilts were on the machines for about 6 1/2 hours, but they’re both quilted, and the Wishes quilt is even bound!  YAY!

 

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A few years ago when I started quilting again, my mom said ‘You don’t have to make me one’.  I think she was concerned about how much money I was spending on fabric (little does she know…).  Then at Christmas I showed her these two tops and she was petting Wishes and said ‘oh, I like this one!’.  So I thought it could go live with her.

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Despite my bad ‘unsewing’ experience with bubbles on my Noteworthy quilt, I decided to use them again on the Mystery quilt, and I think it turned out great…
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And the back
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I am hoping to make the binding and put it on this weekend.  We shall see, we certainly do have lots of things happening on weekends around here!

It’s Wednesday, so I’m linking to Lee!

 

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The Unplanned Purchases

I had to run in to the LQS yesterday to pick up a new needle threader for my machine because mine broke off while I was doing some practice FMQ earlier in the week (things got a little crazy!).  While I was there I decided to check to see if they had gotten in any more off-white minky as I knew Gretchen was in need of some for a backing or two, and I had a great coupon in my pocket (buy 9 yards, get 6 free!).  I had been in the shop the week before and was having a hard time finding 15 yards, but they had gotten a shipment and had the off-white that she needed as well as raspberry that both she & I could use.

After figuring that she needed 4 off-white, 4 raspberry, and I was getting 3 of the raspberry, I was quickly closing the gap on the needed 15 yards to use the coupon.  They have a selection of 108″ fabric for backs, so I picked up red with white circles for my B&W Log Cabin that I started working on last week. I was going to go with a red solid for the back, but this is more fun.
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It adds to the craziness, and I’m OK with it. I’m adding a solid black border, so it will be ‘contained’.  :)

In my last post I wasn’t so sure I was digging these blocks (when I had 2 completed), but I whipped out 5 more and tossed some up on the wall and I’m feeling much better about them.

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This is not the final layout, but I it helps show that my concerns in my last post were unnecessary.  It’s going to look pretty damn cool when it’s done.
I also bought a yard of Wee Wander Summer Night Lights in Magenta (the bottom fabric) because I’m planning to make this, or something similar.

WeeWander_Quilt_Pillow

 

Photo from: http://sarahjanestudios.com/

The tutorial can be found here.

I was JUST going to pick up my part, and ended up spending over $200 on fabric…Whoops!  In my defense, when it was all said and done, we saved about 40% by using the coupon, and that’s darn good savings on things we ‘need’ anyway!

 

Molli Sparkles
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My Black-and-White Blues

I’ve been wanting to make a Black & White quilt for a few years.  A couple of years ago Gretchen & I went to Olive Juice Quilts and I bought their version of a black & white jelly roll.  That jelly roll has been sitting on my shelf ever since, and every once in a while I would think about it and wonder what I should do with it.  Then at a quilt retreat last year, one of the women in our group made a black & white log cabin at the retreat (yes….start to finish she had a finished log cabin top!).

Here’s Karen’s finished B&W Log Cabin:
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(She had just finished holding it up and was starting to fold it when I saw it, so that’s why it’s such a wonky photo!)

At that moment I realized that I also wanted to do a black & white log cabin.  I borrowed her instructions for the fabric requirements and saved them in my phone so I could look them up when out fabric shopping.  Fast forward a few months and I found myself at Antoinette’s Quilt Shop near my in-laws and they had a nice selection of black & white fabric so I made my purchase.

Here are my Black & Whites.  I went with a different red than what is pictured here:
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It’s been another few months (OK, almost a year) and I finally dug out the fabric and decided to press and cut it into 2.5″ strips.  Then I figured I may as well pull out the instructions and see what they say, and I was really surprised with the instructions on how to assemble the blocks so I started to sew.   They went together really quickly – the pattern is from Eleanor Burns ‘Quilt in a Day’ and I can see how it’s possible with her method.

I skipped ahead (still using her method, but with just doing one strip at a time) and finished two blocks so I could see how they’d look.  Because you don’t press at each stage with her method, I didn’t really look at my block until it was done, so it was kind of a surprise.

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I’m going to admit….I don’t love the block.  I feel like my first two ‘whites’ are too similar in their black/white balance, and the same goes with my first two ‘blacks’.  I had help selecting fabric at the store, and it looked OK when the bolts were all standing together, but in the actual block…well…I don’t love it.  I’ve only completed 2 of 36 so far, and I’m hoping once they’re all complete and on my design wall I’ll have a change of heart. I really do I hope I fall in love with it…I had such high hopes!

 

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Bee Blocks

In my last post, I mentioned how unproductive I felt after I realized I had only completed two quilts in 2014, despite all the sewing I did!

I didn’t mean to get all down on myself because in reality,  I jumped out of my comfort zone and join two block of the month’s and a quilt along – things I’d not done before. I also joined the Promises Circle at do. Good Stitches.

Here are the blocks I’ve made since joining:

July Chunky Plus Block - PROMISE @ do.GoodStitches

Broken Bullseye - August Promises Block

 

 

Two of these:

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Two of these:

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This one was primarily made with fabric that just arrived this week from Pink Castle Fabrics. It was a special bundle – Boxing Day Stash.  Perfect because I don’t have a lot of variety in my stash, so when I saw the request/instructions for the Jan. 2015 block being scrappy, I didn’t have to panic!  Score!  I unfortunately didn’t get a pretty picture of the bundle before I cut into it for these three blocks…what was I thinking?

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Linking to Molli!

Molli Sparkles

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Feeling Rather Unproductive

As 2014 came to an end, I was thinking about my quilty projects for the year.  Despite all the sewing I did, I only finished two quilts last year and I’m a little sad about it. For the first time ever, I participated in two Block of the Month’s, and joined a do. Good Stitches group, so despite all the sewing I did, I don’t feel like I accomplished anything (although I know that’s not true).

My first 2014 finish is probably my favorite quilts so far, and I gifted it to my friend Ruthie.  They’ve had quite a bit of bonding time…they’re very happy together!

My second finish was the result of the Triangle Quilt Along. I’m proud of how that quilt turned out, and my husband is currently trying to sleep under it in our bed.  It’s the first quilt I’ve made that has wound up on our bed.

I did have some small finishes – a couple of mug rugs, a table runner for my parents, a paper pieced wall hanging, boxy bags and lanyards for the Disney Cruise, but nothing major to share.

Gret & I have a date for the long arm in a few weeks. I have one top done that I just need to prepare the back for, and I have my Wishes top mostly finished…just have to add the checkerboard border and possibly one additional border. Oh, and I need to piece the back for that one as well.  That’s my least favorite part! My mother has already claimed that as her own.  I’m hoping to quilt two this month….we’ll see how that goes.  If I can manage that, I’ll have the same amount of finishes in January as I did in all of 2014!

I almost made it through this entire post without any photos, but we can’t have that! Here are The Pink One and The Blue One in my freshly-cleaned sewing space last week:

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Happy New Year, everyone!  Thanks for reading!

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Clean-up Complete!

It seems like every few months I have to get in my space and clean it up and reorganize. A few weeks ago I posted that I was starting the process, but I didn’t get too far!  Earlier this week I spent a couple of hours cleaning, throwing things away, organizing, and I’m very happy with the results.

The BEFORE pictures are here.  The BEFORE pano pic:
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And here are the AFTER pictures:
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Oh what a difference a couple of hours make!

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Super Lazy Sunday Stash

I can’t believe it, this is my third Sunday Stash in a row…and I see more in my future (because I keep ordering fabric!!!).

Last week I posted about the prints I bought to make my sewing machine cover. Here are the solids I bought to go along with the prints.  Unfortunately, it’s dark when I get home from work, and cloudy/gloomy on weekends, so I haven’t had a chance to get a photo with natural light.  And as a result, all the colors look wonky, but they look great in real life, trust me!

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I got to work on my cover on Christmas night. Our festivities ended early and I had some free time on my hands so I decided to sew.

I had about 4 bad starts, but kept at it.  I hadn’t done any paper piecing since I took a class with Elizabeth Dackson during the summer so I had to get back in the groove.  It took me quite a while for my first mini-finish:

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Friday I spent pretty much all day in my sewing room (bliss, really), and ended the day with this:

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BAM!  

 

Now on to the next phase of the project(s). I would really like a sewing machine cover that doubles as a mat for my machine with pockets.  However, I use a Sew Steady table and the mat needs to be large enough to cover the space under the legs of the table as well as go under the machine, and that makes for an awful big machine cover.  Do I then need to also cover the table?  Or do I make two separate pieces? A mat and a cover?

I’m completely perplexed and Gretchen is no help because she’s in Jamaica. I’ve called for backup…my neighbor Polly.  I’m hoping that together the two of us can come up with a plan that doesn’t look completely stupid!  :)  Fingers crossed!

Besides laundry and possibly dinner out, all I’m doing today is puttering in my sewing room.  What a fantastic winter Sunday!

 

Molli Sparkles
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