Monday, August 31, 2015

Grown Up--A Finish

Well, it feels 100% good to be able to state that I finished the Aurifil August 2015 designer of the month mini quilt.  However, this finish did not come without a childish internal tantrum.  This month's designer was Nancy Rink and she introduced to us her block called Grown Up.  You can read Pat Sloan's interview and down load the pattern here.

So what exactly was my tantrum about?  I knew it was bound to happen at some point in the year.  Applique.  Don't get me wrong, I love quilts with applique on them.  It's just a technique I haven't had much luck with.  So for a few days my thoughts were, fine I am just not going to do this one.  I'll just have eleven finished minis, no biggie.  But really that thought bothered me.  My goal from the beginning was to make each one and finish it before the next one came out.

Pat Sloan's blog provided me with a perfect compromise.  I made a smaller version with only one appliqued flower.  I was willing to give that a try.  So to the drawing board I went.

Since it was going to be so small and the family reunion was in a few days, the plan was to actually make two.  I was going to use the 30's reprints on the left to make one for me and the fabrics on the right to make one to take to the reunion.

The first step was create the three basket blocks.  I had to move a bit slower in constructing the blocks to make sure that everything lined up like it should.

Next came the applique.  I almost committed the same dreadful sin I always commit when working with machine applique.  I purchased the fusible to iron it onto the block, but I forgot the stabilizer.  At least I caught my mistake and was able to run to the store and pick some up.

Taking things slow and steady I sewed around my pieces using a blanket stitch on my machine.

Since I was in a hurry to get this little thing finished I decided to quilt something completely out of character for me.  Straight(ish) lines.  For thread color I chose an Aurifil light gray.  My thought was that it would be a neutral color and I knew that it would show on both the white and the black, but hoped it would look even, not all disapear-ry.  (disapear-ry I can make up words if I want to)

Sometimes I think Oliver is part ninja.  I swear he was no where around when I stopped to change my bobbin.  I look up and BAM he's sitting in the middle of the tiny quilt looking at me like I'm crazy.  Such a creeper.

Due to going back to school and much craziness at work, I was not able to get this one finished before the reunion.  The family auction would live without one of my pieces this year.

So I made the decision during the binding process to scrap the idea of making a second one.

So a little on my thread choices.  Of course I went with my trusty Aurifil brand of thread.  I used 1100 Pink to bind the quilt and in the flower applique, 2692 black and 2885 green for applique and 2605 medium gray for the quilting.  

Who knows, maybe I'll give applique another whack before the year is over.  I finally managed to score a point on the board in my favor.  

How about one more look at this little fellow.

If you would like to take a look at some of the Aurifil minis I have finished this year, please hop over to my 2015 Aurifil Mini Quilts page.

Also going on today...It is day one of the Fabri-Quilt New Block blog hop.

I hope if you get a chance you will pop over to my fellow bloggers' pages and check out the amazing blocks they have designed and the tutorials they have made for us.  Today's group is lead by Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl.  Each day the hosts will be giving away prizes.

You can also look for the block I designed on Wednesday.

Today I'm linking up with

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Some Sunday Stitching

So my fabric stash grew a bit in the past few days.  Although I'm not sure I can say it grew if those fabrics are already headed to new projects.  My first purchase was fabrics that will be used in the Gypsy Queen Mystery Quilt over at Cora's Quilts.  With the Pat Sloan Vacation Time Mystery Quilt wrapping up very soon, I thought this quilt along would keep me busy along with the Midnight Mystery Quilt at Meadow Mist Designs.

The Gypsy Queen Mystery quilt along will run from August to November, giving plenty of time to have a finished quilt before the holidays.  So far the fabric requirements and cutting instructions have been released.  I was able to get my fabric cut and sorted so that I will be ready for the next set of directions on Friday.

My next fabric score was fat quarters that I purchased from Frabricworm.  This was my first purchase from this website and I have to say I was quite impressed how quickly my order arrived.  There seems to be much love for Cotton and Steel fabric floating around on Instagram and the other blogs that I follow, so I thought maybe it was time to give them a try.  I will be participating in the Dog Gone Cute blog hop in October presented by Sew Fresh Quilts.

My first choice of fabric for my contribution to the hop would be to create a small quilt using these fabrics I purchased at a local quilt shop.  Mostly lots of fun batiks.

But after searching around on Fabricworm I do believe I will create a second version using these Cotton and Steal Sprinkle prints and Moda Background Paper fat quarters.

And finally I was able to spend some time this weekend trying out the Wonderfil thread a purchased a few weeks ago.  I have been hearing so many wonderful things about this thread I decided it was time to give it a try. 

My purchase consisted of 100w poly-cotton, 80w poly-cotton and 50w cotton threads.  For my heart whole cloth block I chose to meet in the middle and give the 80w thread a try.

50 w cotton on the left, 80w poly-cotton on the right

 The first thing I noticed was the smooth silky feel of the poly-cotton, it definitely feels much different than 100% cotton thread.  I was very impressed at how smoothly it glides over the fabric and there seems to be much less lint build up as I quilt.  The whole cloth block requires me to do quite a bit traveling over lines of quilting and with the 80w thread you really don't notice the thread build up at all.  It's just so thin.  I cannot wait to give the 100w a try.

This is my progress so far.  I'm probably about half way finished.  So what have you been working on this weekend?  I would love to hear about it.  

Also don't forget tomorrow kicks off the Fabri-Quilt New Block blog hop being hosted by Late Night Quilter, Quilting Jetgirl, Meadow Mist Designs and Childlike Fascination.  Over 60 bloggers will be introducing blocks and tutorials they have created using fabric donated by Fabri-Quilt.  All of this fun will continue over the next four days.  Each of the hosts will be offering some pretty great give-a-ways...and we all love those.  Make sure you set aside some time to check it all out.  I will be posting my block to the blog on Wednesday.

Today I'm linking up to

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Oliver the Cat--On Quilts

After much swatting at the dog last night, I was able to resume control of the computer, but first I had to find out what he was up to.  Somehow, he had managed to write a post on mother's blog about how much he loves her quilts.  I could not let this stand, my friends.  For it is widely known that I am her one and only quilting companion.  Really you might even say that I am the brains behind the operation.

My name is Oliver Carmichel Stemple.  Affectionately know to the humans as, Poo-sa Poo-sa.

I am the type of critter that likes to be up close and in your space.

From a very early age, I have had a certain appreciation for quilts.  To this day, I cannot believe the juvenile fun I allowed myself to have with them.  It almost makes me giggle.

I do try to watch out for mother.  I think it is the little things in life that really show someone how much you love them.

I watch over her to make sure she sews everything correctly.  I even keep her chair warm for her when she gets up.  Even if she is only going to be at the ironing board for 2 seconds, I make sure I jump in her chair and assume the sleeping for hours position.  I'm also around when she needs to talk about her projects.  I have very keen listening ears.

  She did try tricking me once, but it only worked once, into thinking that a pile of fabric and batting was a folded quilt on top of the dog crate and that it needed my warming.  Turns out it was a distraction of scraps.  Never again, mother, never again.

Then there was the unfortunate incident of the rubber thimble.  Two of the finest delicacies I have ever put into my mouth are ribbon and rubber.  There is just something about their tastes that just make my mouth water and me go crazy.  One evening after discovering that I had helped myself to a bit of Christmas packaging and her favorite blue rubber thimble, mother started doing the loud thing that the dog spoke about.  It kinds of sounds like roaring and proceeded to do this to me.

I did forgive her, but I have not forgotten.

For the most part, my most important job is to assist in the thing she calls free motion quilting.  Well, we all know that things that are "free" tend to wonder off or float away.  So I have taken it upon myself to make sure this does not happen to her when she is in the middle of her quilting.

I simply place my body on the quilt and become dead weight.  I'm very good at what I do.

So I think it is safe to say that regardless of what the dog may have had to say, I am mother's number one.  I am her wingcat, who always has her back.  I know it sounds like a rough life and like a lot of work, but for the most part it's quite relaxing and enjoyable.

I am linking up today with Pets on Quilts Show over at Lily Pad Quilting.  Make sure you hop, fly, swim over there to check out all the lovely pets on quilts and vote for your favorite ones. 

Also linking up with the lovely Julie over at Pink Doxies 

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Becker the Dog--On Quilts

Hello.  My name is Becker and my brother Newton and I are pit bull mixes adopted seven years ago by some pretty awesome humans.  Because of them, we have never spent a day of our lives apart.  He is the yin to my yang.

The human female figure, she calls herself mother, is constantly working on these things she calls quilts.  I loves these things.  They are so soft and fun to roll around on.  All though she sometimes gets loud when I rough around on them.  One of my favorite things to do with these quilts is to wallow them off the couch and use them as a tunnel.  It's pretty cool, when I'm in the tunnel they cannot see me.

Sometimes when she puts them on the floor before she puts the fluffy stuff in it, I just can't help myself.  I have to lay on it.

They are just so pretty to look at. 

Sometimes, if I'm extra good, the mother, will let me in her chair with her and the quilts.  It's my favorite place in the whole wide world to be.

Oh, Newton and I also have an older sister named Maggie.  I think she loves the quilts more than I do.  She's always sneaking up on the mother's quilts.

She even tries to hide in them.

Sometimes she is a little senile.  Like the time she thought she was curled up with one of the mother's quilts but it turned out to just be a picture of one.  She is so silly.

Thanks for stopping by the mother's computer page thingy.  I have to run now because my brother, the cat, is trying to take the computer from me.  He's so mean!


P.S.  Mom is linking up today at Lily Pad Quilting for her Pets on Quilts 2015 pet show.  Please make sure you stop by and check it out.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Goodnight Irene--Finished

It feels like I sort of let myself fall off the blog-o-sphere for a bit.  Sometimes family and life happen and it's hard to get at my machine let alone the computer.  But I'm back and I have a finish to talk about.  Back in 2013 I started piecing a pattern I found in the magazine Quilting Quickly called Goodnight Irene.  I chose a beautiful set of four charm packs in Moda's The Morris Apprentice line. My husband had purchased them for me for Christmas.  I would love to show you pictures from the construction of this quilt, but I only have one.

I think Becker-Boo my pit bull mix loved this quilt before it was pieced.

For almost two years this beautiful quilt top has lived in UFO land in my backroom.  Almost everyday, I am reminded at work and at home that these projects lay unfinished.  Oh, how I longed to make the pile smaller and mark something off of the list.

So a few weeks ago I finally caved and took Goodnight Irene to a Long Arm Quilter hoping I could finally score a finish and cross a name off the list.  Three weeks later, my quilt was finished and ready for the binding process.

Wholly cow, I have not needed this many binding strips in FOREVER.  The quilt ended up measuring 94 x 101 inches.  But thanks to a The Walking Dead marathon, I was able to get this baby bound.  Becker would walk by my chair and whine at me, staring at me with his big ol' yellowish eyes.  I just couldn't say no.  I moved my big pile of quilt and let him in the chair so he could sit with me as I finished the quilt.

I think he loves it even more now that it is finished.

Now we will skip, ahead a week.  I knew that our family reunion was coming up and thought I would grab a few pictures of this quilt while I was at Holly River State Park.  Family reunions are never a small ta-do for us.  My grandparents had a total of eleven children (4 boys and 7 girls).  When you factor in the fact that they both came from families just as big or bigger, that makes for a crazy amount of people.  This year is one of the first years in a very long time all of my aunts and uncles have been able to make it.

My beautiful momma is 3rd from the left.

We enjoy lots of food...

Shortbread cookies made from my grandma's recipe, courtesy of my aunt Zeld. 
good music...

My cousin's daughter, the West Virginia Youth Fiddle Champ

good laughs...

Teenagers hate having their picture taken.

and even a raffle full of items donated by family members.

All of these items where made by family members.  Sadly, I didn't have anything to bring this year.
However, my daughter and I were big winners!

After most of the fun was over, my partners in crime and I slipped off to grab some pictures of my quilt.

So now I can finally cross a name off of my list!

I also dropped my quilt I call Holiday in Kashmir off to be quilted when I picked Irene up.  So I have another bigger finish right around the corner as well!!  

Now it is time to finish writing my post for the Fabri-Quilt Blog hop coming up next week.  I hope you will tune in to check out all of the wonderful blocks created by talented fellow bloggers.  I know I'm pretty excited.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...