Playing Catch Up

There’s been another blogging lull, and a bit of a sewing lull, but I had a ridiculously productive sewing weekend at an amazing retreat center at Stitch Supply Co in Altoona, Wisconsin and I was able to get so much accomplished.

The first thing I did on Thursday was  a quilt top for my first nephew that has graduated high school and is off to college.  I bought all of the fabric @ SSC the first week of June and had almost all of it cut, but just hadn’t had a chance to make much headway.  Thursday evening I was able to completely finish the top, a very simple half square triangle quilt with huge blocks (efficiency, yo!).  I didn’t get a photo of the finished top because there wasn’t an open design board that was easily accessible, so here’s an in-progress shot.  Not fantastic light, but you get the idea.  It’s much larger than he’ll need on his dorm room bed, but bigger is better when it comes to quilts!

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Friday I was FINALLY able to get my do. Good Stitches quilt put together that I collected blocks for back in June/July 2015!  [Insert embarrassed face here.]  I was leery of being the host for exactly this reason – I knew it would take me quite a while to get the top together, and now I need to send it off to be quilted because I don’t quilt my own.

The finished top:

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The pattern is Swell by Camille Roskelley.  I just love how the top turned out!

Later in the day on Friday I did a little shopping because I REALLY had to have one (ok, two) of the bundles that Ann had in the shop.  The top fabric on the bundle was Melody Miller’s Trinket Telephones and even though orange/pink/blue is not a pallet I would have thought I’d use, I just loved it.  I loved it so much that I cut into it before I even took a picture of it!  GASP!

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I knew immediately I wanted to do a plus quilt.  I wish I had a better photo, but it was 2:30 am when I put in the final stitches, then hung it up so I could grab this photo.  I cut the whole thing on Friday evening and put the entire layout up on the design wall before I went to bed (well, except for the two rows I added after I had all of the other rows together – it just wasn’t long enough yet, and I had extra fabric available). I started sewing around 9am on Saturday and just kept sewing.  That design board was roughly 72×72, so that gives you an idea of the size of the quilt.  I’m going to use an orange minky on the back.  It’s gonna be great, and it’s gonna be mine! Now to figure out how to quilt it.  I’m thinking something with circles or swirls but I haven’t decided yet.

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Sunday morning I pieced a back for a baby quilt, then I made bindings for the baby quilt and the senior quilt. Just a little peek at the back for the baby quilt.  White for a back?  Sure, why not?  Use it, wash it, repeat.

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And finally, to catch us all up on what else has been happening between my last blog post and this one, some project updates:

I finished the mini for the ombre swap and I’m very happy with how it turned out!

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I entered another swap – the Black and White Mini Swap and my partner received her mini (and mini mini) today:

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I also sent her a mini mini made up of little blocks that were my Plan A for this swap project.  Once they were assembled into a respectable mini size, they were simply too busy and I needed a Plan B.  I’m quite happy with how Plan B turned out (above), but I also had a bunch of little squares left over that I didn’t want to waste, so I made her a mini mini 2 days before I sent out her package.

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I also made a mini mini (smaller than the one above) that I sent to Yvonne (QuiltingJetGirl) because she loves minis, and mini minis!

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And lastly – here’s the current status of my Betsy Bag.  I had hoped to finish it over the weekend, but since I came home with 3 completed quilt tops, I won’t complain about it too much!  My front and back panels are done.  Only about 347 steps to go!  :)

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Although there hasn’t been much blogging going on, there has been a good amount of sewing going on.

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Sunday Stash – Ombre Mini Edition

I recently stumbled upon the V and Co Ombre Mini Swap that Nicole Daksiewicz @modernhandcraftChris Thompson @the_tattooed_quilter,  and Nydia Kehnle @nydiak have announced. I really like the concept – finish the mini, then get a partner.  No extras (whew, no additional pressure!)!  This is going to be pretty great!

I have a jelly roll and a 1/2 yard bundle in my stash, but I saw that Pink Castle Fabrics had a fat 1/8ths bundle for $15 and decided to get that for the swap project.

The PCF bundle was 12 fabrics (taken in horrible light, of course, sigh):
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I decided to do some foundation paper piecing for my mini that I found on 627handworks a few months ago. I chose her Mercury pattern, enlarged it a bit, chose 8 colors, and got to work.  It has been a while since I’ve done FPP, so first I had to get my brain engaged, rip out the first seam I stitched (pretty side OUT on piece #1, Julie), then I got down to business.  There was a fair bit of ripping out but I finished all 8 of the segments tonight, and I’m very happy about that.

This is not the final layout, it’s just the order I sewed them in, so I still need to rearrange them a little before I sew them together.
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I had leftover ombre fabric of each color and they’re all cut in 6″ squares – I can make a 2nd mini if I so choose.  We’ll just see about that.

Be sure to check out the minis that are popping up on IG:  #ombreminiswap 

 

Another bit of fun for this Sunday Stash post is this (not in my normal wheelhouse) awesome fabric that is soon to be my Betsy Travel Bag by Kristi McDonough aka @schnitzelandboo (and by ‘soon’ I mean ‘before the end of the year’). Kristi is wicked talented and I’m pumped to make this awesome bag.  And if this one goes well, I may be making a couple more for the little people in my life.  Fingers crossed!

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In order of appearance, it’s Essex Linen, Fruit Blossoms Fruit Drops (Melody Miller, Cotton+Steel), Lucky Strikes Score Card (Kimberly Kight, C+S), Elizabeth Tent Stripe (Tula Pink…my FIRST EVER TP fabric purchase.  For realz, yo!), Fruit Blossoms Dottie’s Friends (Melody Miller, C+S).

I can’t even tell you how far out of my norm these fabrics are, but I’m really excited about them and know they’ll make a rockin’ bag!  Now if I could just find the right thread to use I could really get underway.  I have slowly been cutting out the pieces and getting the interfacing on.  This is going to be a marathon, I believe!  But it will be worth it in the end!

Linking to Mary Emmens who is guest hosting for Molli Sparkles this week while he drinks his way around San Francisco!

PS – This is my 200th post.  Pretty cool, considering I started this blog for a way to track my projects.  And here I am, a few years later, doing things (bags, zippers) that I couldn’t have imagined doing when I started this.  Yay, Me!  :)

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Holy Awesome Weekend, Batman!

(A.K.A. Hosted Retreat weekend at Stitch Supply Co.)

Gretchen & I spent the weekend at the new retreat center at Stitch Supply Co in Altoona, WI. Sara Lawson (a.k.a. Sew Sweetness) spent the weekend with us and walked us through two of her bag patterns, the Crimson and Clover Train Case and the Sloan Travel Bag.  Thanks to the fact that we had some pre-work (pre-cutting and fusing on the interfacing), we were able to finish both patterns this weekend.  Ok, ok, so I didn’t finish the Sloan Bag the same day I started it, but I did finish it!

Wanna see????

Crimson and Clover Train Case (Large)

Fabric – Simply Colorful II by V and Co.
Time it took me to complete – Less than 12 hours – I don’t know exactly how long, but there was lunch and dinner and fabric shopping sprinkled in there, too!

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Sloan Travel Bag

Fabric – Kaufman Essex Linen Blend (red),Kaufman Rustica Chambray Linen (Black),Kaufman Brussels Washer Linen Blend Yarn Dye (Grey), Kaufman London Calling Lawn Tiny Flower (Black, lining)
Time it took me to complete – I’d guess somewhere between 12-14 hours.
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There were 8 of us each day with varying levels of bag-making experience and Sara was fantastic and such a great teacher to all of us. It was such a great weekend and I’m so glad that Gretchen and I went.

And then there was the Retreat Center………all I can say is ‘Awesome!’  Ann Sandler and her husband have built a fantastic retreat center and have thought of everything, and I mean everything. Gret and I will definitely be back.

In addition to the bags that Sara taught us, on Friday evening Gret and I made some Sweetpea Pods (Lazy Girls Designs, here). Such a great and quick little bag.  Here are two of mine:

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I can’t believe how much we got done; I’m so proud of us!

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Retreat Weekend, Feb 2016 (the retreat I didn’t attend)

It was February retreat weekend, and instead of being at the retreat in MN with all the ladies, I was in Scottsdale, AZ for work. I’m not going to lie, the 87° weather was pretty darn great, but I did miss having the weekend dedicated to sewing projects.

Despite not being at the retreat, I was able to spend some in-flight time working on the hexies that are going on the outside of my Quilters Planner cover. (Never mind that at this rate, I won’t finish the cover until June….)

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There was quilty mail waiting for me upon my return home, the fabrics I’m going to attempt to use for the Sloan Travel Bag (Sew Sweetness) that Gret & I are going to make in a few weeks.  We’re doing a hosted weekend through Stitch Supply Company in March and Sara will be there to walk us through the bags.  I’m excited to make the bags, but a little intimidated, too.  I’m sure we’ll be just fine!

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The red and two greys are linen blends and I’ve never worked with them before, so I’m hoping I don’t run into any challenges.  Does anyone have any hints for me on these types of fabric?

In addition to the Sloan Travel Bag, we’re making the Crimson and Clover train cases.  I have my fabric for that already – some prints from Vanessa Christenson Simply Colorful II line.   I need to spend some time cutting everything out.  I’m sure that will be quite a project in itself!

The Pink One was extra cuddly tonight because she doesn’t feel good.  Breaks a mama’s heart when her babies aren’t feeling well!

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I’m linking up to Molli Sparkles tonight, although for some reason I can’t get his darn button to work.  Boo!

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WIP Wednesday – Feb 2016

Although I haven’t been doing much blogging, over the past few months, I’ve been trying to keep on sewing.  Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been slowly assembling my Quilter’s Planner Cover.  I feel like I’m moving in slow motion, but I am making progress.

The back panel and the piece that will cover the spine are together.  Again, pardon my horrible nighttime sewing room lighting!

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The front will incorporate hexies and be a little less busy than the back.

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I’ve got to get these hexies stitched together and quilt it to the front panel of the cover.  All of the rest of the fabric is cut, it’s just now a matter of finding the time to put it all together.

At this rate it will be mid-March before it’s complete!

 

I’m linking up to Lee’s (LAST???) WIP Wednesday post.  I didn’t realize that she’s been doing WIP Wednesday for five years.  It’s a well deserved break for her, and I’ll be continuing to read her blog regularly.  Thanks for all the link-ups, Lee!

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I Know, I Know…

It’s been two and a half months since I last posted.  (I feel like I’m in a Catholic confessional.)

Life got a little busy after my last post.  Immediately after the fall retreat was Glamp Stitchalot, and that was pretty damn cool. Picture overload ahead (you’ve been warned).

Me with each of the instructors: Alison Glass, Sarah Fielke, Jeni Baker, Violet Craft, Tula Pink, Katy JonesUntitled

And me and the quilting dudes – Giuseppe, AKA Giucy Giuce and John Adams AKA Quilt Dad.
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I didn’t get very far on these blocks at Glamp, and have done very little since returning home.  The idea is for this to be a medallion quilt – pick a center block from one designer, then add the borders from each of the other designers.  I’m not a medallion quilt gal, so I’m going to make 6 mini quilts (eventually), one from each designer.  I did finish the center block that Katy, Jeni, and Voilet taught (in order):

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Eventually I’ll get back at it and finish them all.  The only one I haven’t started yet is Sarah’s needle turn applique.  I wasn’t in the right head space for it at Glamp, but I’ll give it a go soon.  

Some of the glampers have finished their quilts already.  You can check them out on Instagram – #glampstitchalot2015 

What was even more fun than meeting the instructors and learning their techniques was meeting the other glampers.  Some I’ve been following on IG or reading their blogs, others I’ve started following since attending.  Gret and I were supposed to go again in June, but it’s just not going to work out for us to go again to the next one.  

Since Glamp, I’ve worked on a few small projects.  Here’s a quick run-down on what I’ve been up to over the past couple of months:

I participated in my first swap. It was a First Crush (hello, Sweetwater, of course) swap for Valentine’s Day.  I didn’t use a pattern for the mini, just kind of made it up as I went along.  As one of the extras I sent her the zipper pouch – it was my first time making that particular one, and the first time I used EPP hexies in a finished project – I was rather proud of them (thanks again, Katy Jones!).  I used this tutorial by Kristi at Obsessive Crafting Disorder for the zipper pouch.

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In late-November I ignored all my wifely and motherly duties and made this Wonder Woman mini over about 3 days. She was inspired by Jennifer’s Super Hero quilt for her nephew.  When I saw that, I knew I had to make myself a Wonder Woman of my own.  Modeled here by The Pink One, WW now hangs outside my cubicle at work. 

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Last weekend I decided I was going to bust out these little bitty zipper pouches for 2 of my girlfriends.  I was able to fit in a Neosporin-to-go and some bandaids, and that’s it, they’re so tiny!  Those are 4″ zippers my friends!  The white squares finished at 1/2″ each.  Definitely the smallest squares I’ve sewn!

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Because I hadn’t had enough zippers, I also made my first Sew Together Bag.  Wonder Woman version, of course!  The lighting was bad when I finally finished her up, but I’m pretty proud of how my first run at this bag turned out.  I may make more for friends once I work up the nerve again!

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Santa brought The Pink One her very first sewing machine, and she was so excited to get started.  Such concentration! 

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And finally…here’s what’s currently on my design wall – the Snowflake quilt from the We All Sew Quilt-along in October.  I started it in December and I don’t have that far to go to finish the top.  I’ve just got to set aside a few hours and get to it.

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So even though I’ve been MIA in this blogspace, I’ve still been making.  I hope to be blogging more regularly again, but work is about to get crazy busy and I’ve got three trips in the next 7 weeks.  Two for work, one for fun, but still a lot of being gone.  Add in there a weekend class with Sara of Sew Sweetness and it’s going to be a CRAZY two months!

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Retreat Recap

It was fall retreat weekend this weekend and I didn’t get as much done as I had hoped.  I had big plans to make lots of progress on the Moda Modern Building Blocks kit I’ve had for over a year.  I spent the past two weeks cutting and organizing all 689 individual pieces of fabric and sorting them into their 48 individual ziplock bags.  I recruited my husband to help on the last night because things were taking forever.  I finished five of the 6×6″ blocks and one of the larger blocks – success!

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Where I didn’t find success was with two of the large blocks – things are very messed up and I tossed them aside and went in search of projects I could do and not get completely frustrated. Argh!

 

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After a day and a half of MBB, I had to give something else a go, so I dug through the Art Bins full of stuff I brought along and pulled out this black & white knit that I turned into a scarf (my first ever):
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Then I pulled out the Hazels I had made for The Blue One and turned them into a pillow cover:

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After dinner on Saturday night I pulled out a couple of layer cakes and went to work on this:
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All I have to do is get my seams pressed and sew the rows together.  It’s the Moda Love quilt that I found on April Rosenthal’s blog. I think once it’s finished I will give it to my mom for her to donate to either the hospital auxiliary or the church fall festival next year as a fundraiser.

This morning I dug out a kaleidoscope wall hanging I had given up on last summer shortly after I learned how to make the blocks. I didn’t love the process then, I don’t now, but I wanted to finish it nonetheless. I had one red and one white block done before today and finished up the remaining seven before I packed up all of my stuff to head back home. I sewed them all together and added borders when I got home. I’ll do some really simple quilting, throw on the binding and be done with it. I think it’ll be a wallhanging.  Why not?
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I recruited my neighbor to join Gretchen and I. Here we are in our Patchwork Threads shirts!:)
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The worst part about coming home from quilt retreat??  The unloading/unpacking! The hubby and The Blue One unpacked my vehicle without me even having to ask!  And The Blue One also carried some of my Art Bins and my chair down to my sewing space for me (without being asked! He must really like his Hazel pillow!)
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One weekend down, one to go.  GLAMP STITCHALOT IS NEXT WEEKEND!   EEK!

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