Saturday, April 28, 2018

UFO Busting #17

It's been a busy week again, with little actual sewing.  Tisha, get your crap together.  How do you expect to bust UFO's if you keep chasing Big Foot??  Guess this is like job security for this party, huh?

Remember my dilemma of needing a birthday challenge guild project, after mine became a mystery quilt?  Dilemma solved.  After all the person that threw down the challenge probably shouldn't show up empty handed.

I had just enough fabrics left over to create a one block version of Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl's Star Crystal Quilt.  I loved the way it turned out and can't wait to get it all quilted up.

The only thing left to quilt on the pinwheel quilt is the piano keys in the border.  Fingers crossed this weekend.

I posted more details for the Fire Burst Mystery Quilt on Wednesday and have been working on the color/fabric selection post for Tuesday (cutting instructions next Friday).  I'm so excited so many have showed interest in participating!  The final party sponsor list is now up to seven (I'll officially post about them soon)!   I'm also considering a Facebook QAL Group.  If anyone has experience in running one or do you even like Facebook groups, I'd love to hear your opinion,

I swore to myself I would limit the number of QAL's I did this year to catch up on all my old projects, but I find one sneaking in.  Sandra at mmm!quilts second annual QAL, this time Playtime Plus.  You can read more about it here.  I'm playing around with two different color layouts and I can't decide.

I'll call it the Super Sexy Sophisticated Adult Playtime Plus.  How's that for a title?  But which one should I choose?

As one of the sponsors for Sandra's quilt along (and if you've been there to check out the post did you notice that David and I will have an announcement soon?) , I have been working my tail off this week to write yet another pattern.  I thought it might be nice to have more than one thing to bring to the table for the winner.

It is a quilt we are being commissioned to make using one of David's original designs.  I figured why not go ahead and turn it into a written pattern as well.

Today is also my day to be featured at Melva Love Scraps in her Quilters Through the Generation Series.

If you have some free time and want to learn what possibly makes this "crazy like a mad hatter" quilter tick, click on over and check out Melva's posts and all the past quilters she has featured.

Last item of business, the 2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop is still rocking  right along.

Over the past two weeks, we have introduced you to 16 new quilt bloggers and we aren't finished!  There is still 16 more to go.  I hope you have been hopping along with us and meeting everyone.  If you aren't you are missing out...insert sad face.  That's okay.  We are giving you a whole week to catch up, but the party will fire back up after everyone has rested on May 7th.  Make sure you swing by my the landing page to check out the new peeps.

Let's have a look at last week.  If you missed the post by Shasta at High Road Quilter, you need to take a moment to check it out.  In her post she talks about how to avoid abandoning a project that you are falling out of love with.  We all do it...most of us more than we would like.  Think of it as quilting marriage to stay in love and fall back in love with a project.

Along the same lines, it brings me to Julie at Pink Doxies and her quilt top finish this week.  She had participated in Bonnie Hunter's En Provence QAL a while back.  She changed up her fabrics and found when the reveal came about, she didn't like how things came together.  All those thousands of pieces.  Long story short she packed up all the millions of pieces and stored them away.

This week things changed when she was able to find a way to fall back in love with all those billions of quilt pieces.

If she ends up breaking up with it again, I may have to get permission to ask it out.  I'm in love.  Make sure you hop over to Pink Doxies are read about this on again off again quilt relationship.

Now it's your turn.  Have you fallen out of love with a project and are you trying to rekindle those flames?  Or are you ignoring those lose piles of quilts calling to you for something more flashy and exciting?  Link up and tell us all about it.

Don't forget to the fabric requirements and clues for selecting fabrics for Fire Burst will be posted on Tuesday.  Mark your calendars and head back over here.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Fire Burst Mystery Quilt--Details

I have been working hard behind the scenes over here to get things ready for the Fire Burst Mystery QAL, the newest pattern by myself and my husband David (Dave the Quilt Engineer).  The pattern has been tested and is being reviewed.  All is looking great.  To make things official I wanted to discuss the tentative schedule for the quilt along.

May-fabric requirements and cutting instructions
June-piecing instructions
July-piecing instructions
August-Block 1
September-Block 2
October-Block 3
October-Layout reveal
November & December-finish quilt tops

January 1st fireworks display of quilts!

Why January 1st?  January 1st is a special day for me and this year especially.  It will mark my 40th birthday and what a better way to celebrate than with friends!  Also, we will be about half way through my daughter's senior year of high school so I'll probably need a pick me up.  Nothing makes me feel better than beautiful quilts.  Plus, who doesn't love fireworks to ring in the new year?  This will be a more quite way to enjoy them without terrorizing the neighborhood dogs.

I'm also happy to announce, that the QAL will have sponsors!!!  So far I have had six very generous quilters step forward with prizes to celebrate our finished quilts.  I will be contacting a few more possible sponsors in the next few weeks and announcing all of them very soon.

If you are new to quilting or quilt alongs maybe I should define what a mystery quilt is and how it works.  You are given clues one at a time.  The first clues are picking fabrics and cutting instructions.  Then the piecing instructions are given in small chunks.  Part of the fun is arranging your pieces seeing if you can crack the code of what the top will look like.  The very last set of instructions will be the quilt layout.

Fire Burst will be beginner friendly and offered in baby size (32" square) and lap (64" square).  No crazy Y seams or half rectangle shapes.  Worried about being able to keep up?  I promise that the schedule will be very forgiving.  A month will be more than enough time to finish each step of the quilt, or play catch up if you get behind.  The last piecing instructions will be given the first of October with the layout a week later.  You will have from then till December to finish piecing your quilt top or quilt your quilt top.

I also understand that not everyone is comfortable with mystery quilts.  It's a big commitment not knowing what you are making.  With the layout reveal at the beginning of October, there is still plenty of time to make a quilt top/finished quilt before the end of December deadline and join in the fun.  The baby quilt is easily pieced in an afternoon.

Another great QAL getting ready to start is Sandra at mmm!quilts Playtime Plus Quilt.  Playtime Plus was a featured quilt in Benartex's ezine, Modern By The Yard.

Photo curtsey of Modern By The Yard 
The magazine is a free download full of goodies.  Hop over to mmm!quilts and read more about the quilt along, find out how to get your copy of the ezine and read all about the awesome sponsors and prizes.

Back to Fire Burst...will you be sewing with David and I and partying on January 1st?  I hope you will.  We will kick things off starting next week with picking out fabrics and cutting instructions.  I hope that I can provide you with guidance in your decisions.  You can always email me with questions.  If you are sewing along, please grab my button on the side bar (clicking on it will direct you to my QAL landing page) and let everyone know, you will be brining in 2019 (that's so weird to type) with a bang!

Monday, April 23, 2018

Week 2-2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop

Welcome back to week two of the 2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop being hosted by Beth (Cooking Up Quilts), Jen (Dizzy Quilter), Sandra (mmm!quilts) and myself.  Last week we started things off right with our first eight quilt bloggers.  I do hope you visited them.  This week it is time to introduce you to eight more.

From my hive of lovely quilters, the Happy Stitching Team, I would like to introduce you to 

I hope you will take some time today (this week) to get to know both of them and say hello.  Don't for get to visit Beth, Jen and Sandra to meet the quilters in their groups as well.  

Did someone mention give aways?  Oh, wait, we did!  Our 18 generous sponsors have some very fun prizes to give away to you for hopping along with us.

To be eligible for the prizes just follow the instructions of the rafflecopter below.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

UFO Busting #16

I feel like I'm showing up to my own party empty handed, but I promise I can explain.  First off, there has not been extreme amounts of sewing going on this week.  Then, the few things I have worked on I can't show you.  But I can kind of tell you about them.

I have been working on pattern testing the lap version of the upcoming Fire Burst Mystery Quilt (I have posted a tentative schedule on the landing page).  Right now it is setting on the table as a pile of finished blocks to be pieced together this weekend.  In my pattern testing venture I have gained a buddy to join me.  Anja (Anja Quilts) agreed, pretty enthusiastically, to pattern test this quilt as a mystery for me.  This has been so much help!  She is catching all the little things I've missed and hopefully, fingers crossed, having fun.

The pinwheel quilt is still fast asleep on the Sweet Sixteen.  I've had too many other fun distractions to unwrap her and finish her.

The distractions? 
There was chauffeuring to and from a romantic teenage dinner date for my daughter and her boyfriend...sigh.

The 2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop kicked off this week with eight new quilt bloggers introducing themselves to us.  If you haven't check it out yet, hop over to here to find out more.  You can also sign up for the give aways being offered by our sponsors.

The next cool distraction is something I've been working on for a little while.  I was contacted a few months ago my Melva (Melva Loves Scraps) about David and I being part of her Quilters Through the Generation Series.

I love what she is doing with this series.  Quilting full of history, that is just a fact.  Melva is taking the time to interview and document families that quilt helping to preserve some of this history.  She first contacted me because she knew that both David and I quilt and we are a family.  What she didn't know at the time, is that we both come from families with lots of quilters in them.  So this week, I have been photographing my family quilts and answering questions about them.  If you'd like to read more about my quilty DNA, Melva will be featuring me on April 28 and David in May.  If you come from a family tree sprinkled with quilters, Melva is always looking for people to interview for the series.  Please contact her.  It was a wonderful experience and I have to admit, looking back through pictures and remembering the ladies I miss so dearly was wonderful.

What do you do when you turn your guild's challenge project into a mystery quilt?  You go back to the drawing board for the challenge project.

Luckily for me, I have just enough of these fabrics left to still create something without having to purchase more fabric.  Thank goodness for over buying, right?

The last little distraction was helping a fellow quilter not be a UFOer.  I don't want to give the details, but was contacted by a fellow blogging friend in need of help.  She recently pieced the absolute SWEETEST quilt for her granddaughter and was stuck on the quilting.  Her quilt top was much more fun than the actual work I was doing, so I took a break to provide some help.  I drew up a little plan and she loved it.  That evening I had my daughter video me drawing out the stitching path so she could see how to easily dance around the quilt.  Sometimes moving around the quilt is the stumper.  I'm happy to say she has been stitching the nights away.  I hope she shares it with us when she's done.  Here's to a quilt not living in UFO land!!

Let's talk about last week.  Last week, I talked about how UFO's are created.  This week how about UFO's in their raw form.  My dear friend Sandra (mmm!quilts) is always a lady with irons in the fire and juggling projects galore.

She shared with us her goals for the second quarter of the year and it is full of projects in fabric pull form.  If you want to take a break and drool over some hot fabric porn (it's rated G) hop over to Sandra's now and check out her list of "to makes" and those lingering to be finishes we all know about too well.

So what are you up to this week?  Are you like me and have nothing really sharable or are you competing in the Most Productive Quilter Pageant (no bikini's required)?  Link up and tell us about it below!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Week 1-2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop

It's time to get this party started!  Welcome to the 2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop.  It has been so much fun getting to know all the bloggers participating this year over the past few weeks and watch them get to know each other.

Today I would like to introduce to you my first two HST's.  I hope you can find time today to hop over to each of their pages and get to know a little bit more about them.  Let me introduce to you:

Terry at TLC Quilts
April at Janda Bend Quilts

Please don't stop with just Terry and April.  There are six more talented bloggers to meet today.  All you have to do is visit Beth at Cooking Up Quilts, Jen at Dizzy Quilter and Sandra at mmm!quilts to find links to their posts.  By visiting and commenting on all eight bloggers posts, you will be eligible through the rafflecopter below to win prizes from our seventeen generous hosts.

Benartex Canuck Quilter Designs Christina Camelli
Clinton Modern Creative Cooking Up Quilts Devoted Quilter
Island Batik Make Modern Meadow Mist Designs
Needle & Foot Fine Fabrics Northcott Phat Quarter Fabrics
Quilting Jetgirl Sew Fresh Quilts Sew Sisters Quilt Shop
The Red Hen Shop Victoria Findlay Wolfe Quilts The Quilters Planner

Don't miss out on all the fun and meeting new quilting friends.  Also, don't forget to come back next Monday, April 23rd to meet the next round of bloggers and enter to win more prizes.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

UFO Busting #15

Welcome to episode 15 of the UFO Busting Party.  I feel like this is the Quilty Health Class addition.  Today class, we are going to split up into two groups, the boys in one room and the girls in another, and talk about how UFO's are conceived.  Oh, wait.  We don't have to do that.  But this UFO did start out with a husband and a wife.

Earlier this fall, David gifted me this fat quarter bundle after a work trip to North Carolina.  He wanted to challenge me a bit.  I do love the fabrics neatly wrapped in this FQ tulip, but I'll be honest, it's probably not a color palette I would choose.  He knew that.  So since November it has sat.

Until Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl posted a picture of an adorable baby quilt version of her Bundle Buster Pattern made with fat quarters she picked from Bernie at Needle and Foot's Etsy shop.  The light bulb in my head lit up!  My fat quarter would be perfect.  So last weekend, I spent a couple hours in labor, well cutting and stitching, and gave birth to this retro fun baby quilt.

And that, boys and girls, is where UFO's come from and how they are made; because now it must wait for its turn to be quilted.   If you have any questions you should probably ask your parents when you get home.  Class dismissed.

Quilting is well underway on the pinwheel quilt. 

The pattern is a free pattern, Pinwheels in the Park, at Sew Mama Sew.  I think if I could block 3 hours of uninterrupted time I could have this one finished...just not sure if that will happen this weekend.  Just keep stitching.

Why might this not happen, you ask?  Because I sense a disturbance in the quilting force.  I have a feeling the fabrics above will provide a distraction as I test my pattern for the lap size quilt of the Fire Burst Mystery Quilt.

Look, I have the start of a QAL button.  I'm still working out some details, but hope to have the page up and going soon. Stay tuned.

I haven't been the only one in quilty labor.  Julie at Pink Doxies has been too and, boy, was it a big one.  I'm not sure the weight but it measures in at 92" x 93" and she has named it Hapi Quilt.

I kind of feel like her Lamaze couch.  Behind the scenes, she texted with me as she auditioned fabrics, tested ideas and gave birth to this quilt.  My job, to remind her to breath, of course.  I'm forever in love with Julie's design process and the way her quilts come together.  If you missed it, please hop over to Pink Doxies and read about it here.  Wonder if I'll get to be the quilt Godmother?

Gail at Quilting Gail is celebrating, or I hope she is, her recent finish and what I would consider a pivotal quilting moment.  She is half way to reaching her PhD goal.  We aren't even half way through the year!

Look at all those fabulous feathers and all the fun continuous curves in this classic red and white quilt.  If you haven't already, make sure you congratulate Gail on her finish and celebrate her reaching her half way mark.

Before we find out what everyone has been up to this week, I just wanted to remind you that the 2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop will be officially kicking off this Monday, April 16th.  Make sure you come back so I can introduce you to two of my HST's.

We know how much I love acronyms, so I absolutely love the name they came up with for their hive, Happy Stitching Team.  On top of meeting new quilty friends, the co-hosts, Beth (Cooking Up Quilts), Jen (Dizzy Quilter), Sandra (mmm!quilts) and myself, will provide you with opportunities to win prizes from our 17 (yes I said seventeen) very generous sponsors.  Each week of the hop all 17 will be giving away awesome prizes.  Trust me, you do not want to miss this.

Now on to what you've been up to this week.  Did you go into quilting labor last week?   Are you breathing through the pains of trying to give birth to a finished quilt or enjoying the process of making a UFO...wink, wink?  What ever the case link up below and tell us all about it.

Monday, April 9, 2018

The Beginning of a Mystery?

I unofficially dubbed myself the Queen of QAL's last year.  I don't think it is much of a secret if we have been friends in real life or in quilt blog land that I love a great QAL and at the top of that list...a mystery QAL.  I've dreamed of hosting my own, but so far have shied away from the idea.

I recently gave the members of our guild a challenge, the Birthday Challenge.  The idea is to create anything (quilt, mug rug, purse, ect) using primarily your birthstone color.  The idea being that someone could guess your birth month based on what you created.  Everyone will bring their finished projects to the June meeting so we can share them.

For my item, I decided to pull from the David's design book.  I'm his wife, I have permission.  Legally they are half mine any way...or that is our joke.  I landed on one I loved and went to work writing a pattern for it.  After the numbers where crunched and graphics where made, I started testing the pattern and making the quilt.

 Then it dawned on me...this pattern would make a great first mystery quilt.  The pattern would be great for a beginner and would look great in so many different color ways.  It only requires a background fabric and three additional fabrics.

If there is interest in a mystery QAL, I will offer the quilt in two different sizes, baby and a larger lap quilt.  When I made my test quilt (baby size)  I was easily able to prep, cut and construct the quilt in one afternoon.  So, I'm officially putting this feeler out there to see if anyone would like to play along on what should be a quick and easy mystery quilt.  So, would you be interested in joining in?  Would there be anything in planning it that could make it easier on you?  When you work on QAL's do you prefer to have an entire month to work on a set of instructions or do you prefer every two weeks? 

So that's it.  I am asking you to trust me completely and sew blindly.  Well, not with your eyes closed that's just a lawsuit waiting to happen.  More like a quilting trust fall.  I think you know what I mean.  Maybe I can even drum up some sponsors?  Respond below and let me know what you think.

Today I'm linking up with Main Crust Monday.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

UFO Busting #14

Here we are another Saturday and UFO's everywhere.  That's okay, it just means we are being busy and hopefully productive.  This week, I have been able to work on three projects.  Small steps, but steps forward.

I spent some time breaking in my awesome new seam ripper that my nephew gifted me a few weeks ago.  Back in the summer he discovered a love for making pens and decided to make his favorite aunt a seam ripper.  Can you believe he thinks I make mistakes??  I love it!  I'll share a bit more about this project on Monday and the prospects of a possible QAL here on the blog.

I was also able to get the signature quilt pieced.  I will take it to the guild meeting next week to see if anyone else would like to sign it before I start quilting it.  That gives me plenty of time for a finish before it's July deadline.

I caught a break in the rainy cold weather yesterday and was able to use my mom's garage (without freezing) to baste up the pin wheel quilt.  I have visions of Aurifil thread flying off the spool all weekend long.  Guess I'll have to wait until next weekend to see if that vision comes true.

I think we should pop a cork (of what ever bubbly drink you prefer) and celebrate that two finishes where posted to the blog last week!  Anja over at Anja Quilts linked up her super sexy quilt photo shoot with her recent finish of Yvonne at Quilt Jetgirl's Digital Wave Quilt.

It can be hard to come up with creative ways to stage quilts for our blogs, but I think Anja hit it out of the park staging her quilt next to her vintage Singer treadle machine.  Make sure you go over there and check out more pictures of this very cool modern quilt.

Sandy over at Sew...This Is My Blog also shared her recent Tom and Jerry in orange quilt that will be donated to Little Lambs Foundation for Kids as part of the Hands 2 Help Charity Quilt Challenge.

I can just see the smiling face of a little one with they see those bright colors and spy those beloved cartoon characters.  Congrats on your finishes guys!  Let's keep up the good work.

So what have you been up to this week?  Link up and share.

Also mark your calendars for the upcoming 2018 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop kicking off on Monday, April 16th. 

This year I am co hosting with Beth at Cooking Up Quilts, Jen and Dizzy Quilter and Sandra at mmm!quilts and we are just itching to introduce you to all the wonderful new quilt bloggers.  I hope you will join us in meeting all these wonderful quilters and take a chance on winning some pretty drool worthy prizes from our generous sponsors.

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