Thursday, May 30, 2013

One of these things is not like the other ones...


Here's my version of the game:

Can you see it?
The bottom, left hexie flower is not centered the same way as the other three!
I know, I know...extreme CDO. (because everyone knows to truly have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, you must alphabetize it!)

Last week I made this sweet, little pillow with Josephine Kimberling's Hope Chest.
Thank you Charlotte!

The pattern's called Tile Block and shows you how to make three different sizes using a technique from Cathedral Window blocks.

The pillow's finished block is actually 6" sq, the sashing makes it 9" sq finished.

I wanted to try the next size, 9" sq finished, so
I rooted around in my scraps for soft pinks to piece the background.
The pattern calls for four-5", solid background squares.
I wanted a scrappier look and instead of having four...I cut out sixteen 2 & 3/4" ones and pieced them together.
There are four, four patch blocks here not yet sewn together.

I then cut out sixteen 2" squares from my aqua-bluish scraps and pressed them in half diagonally.
  These are the pieces that get turned back into a curve when the block is done.

You baste one into each corner of the blocks using a scant 1/8" seam and your machine set on the largest stitch length.

I really liked the look of this once I got the four, four patch blocks sewn together with the triangles in there.  I might have to do this for another little project.

The pattern then tells you to "Slightly roll back the folded edge of a traingle to make a gentle curve...with matching thread, blanket stitch, straight stitch or hand tack the folded edges."
I used a light aqua to hand tack the edges down.

I don't have a picture of this stage in the process, but decided it was a little "plain".
That's where those flowers come in!  I machine pieced 1 1/2" hexies, and used the Frixion pen to make a 1/4" seam allowance, turned it under and hand sewed them to the background.  I had them all hand appliqued on when I realized that one of them was sewn on in the wrong direction.


Perfectionist that I am (ahem...cough!), I simply took my trusty seam ripper and re-appliqued it on with a proper orientation.
Oh, if only things in life were that easy!

Much, much better!
I'm halfway wanting to make another pillow and halfway wanting to make more for a throw size quilt.
I love the look and the hand sewing part is relaxing, but really...we all know I have waaaaaaaay, waaaaaaaay, waaaaaaaay too many unfinished projects lurking in the closet to start another one.

Linking up with
for another action packed, adventuresome foray into the blogging quilt world!
Bring your Indiana Jones hat, whip and bug repellent!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Mini Monday

Memorial Day.
A day of reflection and thankfulness.

Loverly fabric I picked up a while ago.  No selvage, so I have no idea what it is.

I learned a new technique today.  I picked up a free pattern a couple of weeks ago and decided to spend some time today playing at the sewing table.  I didn't want to commit too much on something I had never done before.....I'm learning!  LOL

I ended up with this sweet mini pillow!
Sort of a Cathedral Window effect.
I enjoyed sewing the curves into the corners and will definitely be trying this on a larger scale.
This cutie comes in under 9" sq.
I straight line quilted the border seams.  Love that lacey look it has!  I then quilted a 1/4" along the inside seams and up and down the middle, outside "triangles" for some definition.

Here it is with my Spring Sprocket Pillow.
They make me smile!

Thank you for all the thoughts, prayers and well wishes for my mom!  She was very tired Monday after her last radiation...and then went on to start "heavy" chemo on Thursday.
She is a seven-year miracle!

Linking up with
for my week-long quilt fix!
If you haven't peeked or voted yet for this Spring's Blogger's Quilt Festival, voting ends Friday!  I've had so much fun visiting all the blogs and enjoying all the incredible quilts being showcased!
Hope this week treats you kindly!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

WIP and Finishes

Last week I started EPPing (English Paper Piecing) again. 

Now I understand why people are addicted!

With so much busy-ness, it's nice to sit and let my hands work while my mind drifts, relaxes, finds peace, puzzles and reflects.

These little diamonds turned into this:

by the end of the week.  Yesterday I spray basted it onto some happy, yellow polka dot fabric and machine quilted "echoes" for the center star and the colored/patterned fabrics...and twice around the whole piece.
I chose a salmon colored thread to hand quilt larger stitches in the white areas.

This will be a pillow for the den.  Around 15" sq when I'm done.  I scored some vintage napkins in these colors over the weekend and will use one for the back.

Another WIP is my mom finishing up her 25th round of radiation yesterday!  She starts "heavy" chemo on Thursday, and all prayers are appreciated!

Linking up with

for WIP's and Friday Finishes!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival Spring 2013

It's one of my favorite times of the year...Blogger's Quilt Festival!
As a homeschooling mama, college senior's checkbook, and wife-extraordinaire (lol),  I don't get to jet off  Quilt Market or SewCon.  Shoot, I barely make it to my LQS at a respectable rate.

That's what makes this event so awesome...We (me, myself, and I-and YOU!) get to grab our beverages of choice, our iPads, pc's and electronic viewing devices and go to a virtual quilt for two weeks straight!

So grab your cuppa, slip on some comfy shoes (or go naked footed), put a box of Poptarts and juice boxes in front of your kids, lock the door and enjoy two rockin' weeks of the best the web has to offer! 

This year I'm entering my "Tree of Life" quilt in the Art Quilt Category.

Over a year ago, I fell in love with a print from Rett.  I emailed her and asked permission to share some of her incredible photos and tell her I was working on a quilt inspired by her "A Tree Grows".  Please stop by her blog!  She is a "quilter at heart" and her work is truly amazing!

Here is my initial "grid" of scrappy squares with white for the area where the "tree" would go.

I stitched together the yellows, oranges, reds and pink and took a large bowl as a template to cut out the "tree" and then pin basted it onto the sky and ground "grid".

Then I drew the trunk and branches onto a large piece of butcher's paper, transferred it to Heat N Bond fused to a beautiful, brown batik and cut out my pattern.
Ironing was done very carefully!

Using the same process, I cut out about a gazillion yellow dots for the "fireflies".
Ironing was done even more carefully!

Time for quilting!
Which was a whole other learning curve for me and stretched my limited FMQ skills to the max!

I used a variagated Sulky in blues for the sky.  FMQing swirls for the "fireflies" to play in.
A variagated orange, pink, red and green Sulky for the leaves on the tree.
I tried to stay "true" to Rett's concentric circles for bark and am really happy with that and the feel of the branches.  The grass is quilted with long, vertical "blades" of grass and the whole thing is bound with the same brown batik as the trunk and branches.

"Tree of Life" measures 17 1/2" sq and because of all the quilting, is pretty heavy!  I really enjoyed taking Rett's inspirational creativity into a new medium and her current works would make lovely quilts!

Thank you once again Rett!


Monday, May 13, 2013

That's how we roll!

Due to what we thought at the time was extremely unfortunate incidents...Chris now has a car for his use as an upcoming new driver.  It's my old Honda CRV (loved this car!).  In the past, it had been Javi's car to use and Chris needed some time behind the wheel to learn the car and get used to driving it.

So we decided to spend some time in the west central part of Indiana.  At least a two hour drive away.
Guess who drove?


We headed out to Shades Park.  Here in glacially flattened corn land...we drool over anything that has heighth to it. 

We have always liked hiking and when the boys (all boys!) came along, we naturally took them with us.  We've hiked up and down from Michigan to Florida, Alabama to South Carolina.

We usually end up in water somewhere along the line!

This is Lady.

She will be ten years young this year!  She has been with us for nine of them and enjoyed many of our adventures.  We didn't get out with her much this winter, so we thought she might like a road trip too.

She loved it!  When the boys headed down the waterfall, she was right there, ready to jump into the water and go!  Since she and I are "young" together, I kept her at the top with me.  We like hiking, but that slope and water logged trail was too much for us that day.

We ended up the day with Pizza Hut and everyone but the driver napping on the way home.
I'm so thankful for these times we get to take away from the norm and get out and experience things like waterfalls, flooded trails, dizzying heights and lots of adventure for the guys!

Not much sewing going on here though.
We're finishing up a lot of classes we "farm" out for the kids.  As a second-semester, high school junior, Chris took a dual credit class at a university up the way.  He also took an English/Composition class from a lady in another town and we have homeschool co-op in a nearby town.
Lots of driving!

We're down to the last two weeks of classes.  Chris has Spanish and Geometry to finish up and Ben finished up his Pre-Algebra so that leaves English, Spanish, Cultural Geography and Science for him to complete.  We also picked up four or five spring soccer games for we're still doing lots of driving, but I love that the boys enjoy what they're doing and get to spend time with the awesome kids on the team!

I did get to put a border on the Rose Star Quilt.

This is Moda's "Rose Parade".  Check out this selvage!

I also got to sit down and try some EPP again.  I have loved the look, but hated the work!  I usually try to figure out how to maching piece instead of hand piece...but sat down Saturday for a couple of hours browsing Pinterest, listening to the radio, watching the bunnies and squirrels in our yard and start a little project.

Hoping you'll join the parties this week to see some incredible projects and finishes at: