Sunday, September 29, 2013

Moving Right Along

I am feeling good about the work I was able to finish this weekend. I caught up at work (finally!) and was able to do some sewing. I even sat and picked out bad squares on a quilt I started earlier in the summer that was put away after a huge error was found. I love when things start falling into place.

Skill Builder BOM

I made progress on the Skillbuilder BOM. I am almost caught up with my blocks and am still debating how I want to quilt it. (Her tutorials on quilt at you go were pretty but not really my style.) I do know that I am falling more in love with this quilt and am so happy that I am making a quilt to keep.

 My first plan for the Saturn Block was to use this Free Spirit fabric to change up the colors. (This fabric reminds me of the doodles I used to do with Sharpies!) I could not get my stripes to work according to her directions. I also felt that it didn't match the other blocks after all.
First attempt at Saturn block
I decided to stop working on that block after feeling frustrated by the instructions. I moved on to the Candyland block. This one was a lot of fun. 

Then, I started the Pixelate block. I love that I was able to just throw them together without following a set pattern. (I did make a rainbow on the bottom block just because I could.) The Pelon quilter's grid makes sewing tiny squares look so perfect.
After feelings of accomplishment on those two blocks, I returned for one last attempt on the Saturn block and loved how it turned out. I used the remnants of the Candyland block to break up the stripes needed for this block. 
Saturn's Rainbow
I have 3 more to go and then will be officially caught up on these BOM. I can't wait to put them all together. I hope to have the quilting design in place by then.

Charity Work

The OMQG is putting together charity quilts for Camp Boggy Creek. I was sitting at the table assigned to the RED quilt and was tasked with creating 5 blocks  I'm so excited about this cause because I know it will be put to good use. I've really love all of the charities we've supported so far this year.

Our table decided to use the January BOM from our guild. The fun was in going through my red scrap basket to find strips for this design. I remember all of the quilts I've made using these fabrics and it was a fun trip down memory lane.

All that's missing is the white border to make them 12.5 blocks. I think I will start on my scrap quilt next year. Since I've saved squares and strips from every quilt I've ever made there will be a lot of happy memories when it's all done.

More Halloween Blocks

I am determined to win the Halloween blocks on Wed! I wanted to make a few more blocks to increase my odds.

If do win, I will be making another quilt for my godson in NC who LOVES Halloween as much as I do. Even if I don't win, I will be happy to see them made into a fun quilt for someone else. 

Wishing you a fun and productive week!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Razzleberry: A Sweet Treat!

After returning from an interesting work conference, I woke up early Saturday for our OMQG Sew Day. I was so glad I did. Julie Creus from La Todera was there to share her Razzleberry pincushion. I love that her pattern had clear pictures of each step along the way. She's really creative and such a patient teacher!

I complained a bit about hand sewing and ended up with a little short cut that helped me make the little poofs more uniform. I left Sew Day with a robin's egg nest. (And really sore fingers from pulling on the thread.)
I came home and took some carpet thread and a carpet needle to cinch up the little pouch before stuffing them. It worked a lot better than just regular, strong thread and was easier to hold while closing. I whipped out the last 12 poofs in record time. I hot glued them in place and was so pleased with the results. How sweet is this?
Razzleberry Pincushion


Today, I worked on my Halloween BOM and loved the freedom of making a 12.5 inch block in any design that I want. At Sew Day, I was in awe of Debbe's fabrics from the Michael Miller's "Nevermore" line. (Her quilt is going to be amazing.) She shared a few of her extra squares with me and I couldn't wait to make a dark homage to one of Poe's most famous works, "The Raven". 

I love the script, the colors, and the imagery it brings to mind. The English teacher in me went into super geek mode over this beautiful line of fabrics. I am definitely putting this fabric collection on my wishlist for Christmas/Birthday. What do you think of this collection?

I want to make a few more squares to see if I can come back home with it after our next guild meeting. Fingers crossed that I win all the blocks from one of my favorite holidays.

Wishing you a happy and productive week.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Crazy Town!

My life (and work) has been on a round trip to Crazy Town lately. There is so much to do and 24 hours is just not enough to fit everything. So, I've had to cut back on things that give me the most joy. I know this ride will not last forever so I am taking everything in stride as best as I can.

I did manage to sneak in some sewing over the weekend which helped take away some of the stress I've been under with my job.

Broken Arrow
My next block for the Skill Builder BOM is done. I'm still so far behind but I will be getting more done soon! I really liked piecing this one as it used up those little scraps I've had at the bottom of my bucket for this project. I didn't think I would need those itty bitty pieces but am so glad I didn't pitch them just yet. I still have to rip out the paper on the back and add the borders but I'm in love with the colors. I only made the center arrow in rainbow order. (Do you see where I messed up? It bugs me but not enough to sew the whole thing over again.) I'm even more glad that I chose to do solids for this quilt because I would not want to match up prints or anything that needed to be set in a specific direction.

Rainbow Ribbon
I also finished my quilt top from the Jacquie Gering stitch and flip class. (Forgive the terrible lighting on this one. It's been raining so much here that I didn't want to take it outside yet.) I'll post a better picture when it's quilted and has a binding. There's another error but its imperfection is what makes this quilt special to me.

I leave next week for a work conference and I'm actually excited to go this year. It means I get a little break from the day-to-day tasks that require my constant attention. I wish I could tuck my sewing machine in my suitcase. Perhaps I'll start on another hand sewing project...hahahahaha! I'm too spoiled by technology to attempt more hand work in this lifetime.

May your trips to Crazy Town be short stays!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

In Rainbows

To know me is to know that I love rainbows. I love the variety of colors against black, gray, or white. I get a little giddy when I see multicolored fabrics that are in rainbow order. (I still like it when the colors are randomly placed but there is nothing better than classic ROY G BIV to me.)

Solid scraps for Class

So of course I was going to do a rainbow stitch and flip design when I signed up for the Jacquie Gering class hosted by OMQG. My original intention was to to a spiral rainbow but my blocks took on a life of their own when I placed them on the design wall.

I began with 3.5 x 6.5 rectangles in gunmetal gray. The various scraps I clipped were all different sizes but I simply chain pieced them on the bottom right corner of each rectangle.

When placed on the design wall, they started to make this diagonal stripe that I really liked when I stepped away from the way. I was really grateful for this wall since I usually design on my table. (Blank wall space is very limited in my tiny house.) When I arrived at the end of the row, I realized that I needed to get this design to turn so I can continue adding the colors in the order planned. The idea of using small squares to make it work appeared as a solution when I played with placement. I went back to work and cut out 3.5 squares and added a stitch and flip to the corners using the same fabric. (It was perfect since I had all of those scraps from the first round of sewing rectangles!)

Jacquie made me practice "turning" by forming triangles!
Here's what I have so far:

(Sort of blurry but you get the idea.)
I formed alternate rows of rectangles and squares for this rainbow design. Jacquie mentioned that she's never seen squares and rectangles together using her method. I was ecstatic to have made a new pattern and can't wait to put it all together. It reminds me of a gymnasts' ribbon used during the artistic portion of their program. Since the English teacher in me also loves alliteration, I might just call it Rainbow Ribbon.

I spent most of my day sewing rectangles and squares at the class but I did learn a lot from Jacquie about playing around with designs and colors. I especially loved seeing Blind Co-pilot in person. She quilted it using rainbow thread! (Beth S. noticed this and called me over to admire it's rainbow beauty.)

I wish I could capture the thread colors perfectly for you to admire, too. J'adore!

I spent much of Labor Day weekend working on sewing the rows together so meticulously. I kept checking and rechecking the order on the first 2 rows then I remembered Jacquie's note about sewing the top to the bottom. I put on some music and gathered my next pile.
Stacked from top to bottom!
I started singing about sewing the top to the bottom and found my groove on Sunday night. This felt liberating and I finally finished sewing the columns.
I needed to take a break from this one so I don't have the top finished just yet for show and tell at Wednesday's next guild meeting. I do have another technique under my belt and the possibilities are endless.

Speaking of Wednesday's meeting, I realized that I never made my BOM for the lotto. As luck would have it, the scraps left over from this class were perfect! I whipped together this wonky star from Linda's great tutorial.

Now, it's time for me to get back to work!
(This fabric isn't going to pay for itself.)