Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Boxy Bag

I've been wanting to try a quilted patchwork bag ever since I saw Oh Fransson's amazing Weekender bag.  She kindly wrote up a tutorial for making the quilted patchwork panels (using the quilt as you go method).  A few weeks ago, I mustered up the motivation to try it.  The verdict: love it.  Here's the panel I came up with:

I organized my scraps by color a few months ago which helped the process go quicker.  I then turned the panel into a boxy bag using this super easy tutorial by Lolo Sinclair.

The only thing I will change the next time I make this bag (because I will be making more of these!) is to add a tab at the end of the zipper to make it easier to open.  Now that I've gotten my feet wet, I might dive into making a quilted Weekender bag next. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Stained Glass Quilt

This quilt was  four years in the making.  It was made with Good Folks fabric by Anna Maria Horner, still one of my favorite fabric lines (I may or may not be hoarding some of this precious fabric).  I started it in December 2010 (see here and here) when the quilting world, and I along with it, discovered the wonders of half-square triangles.  I'm pretty sure this quilt was my inspiration.  I remember my sister saying "Oy, all that piecing!" when I showed it to her but "all that piecing" was completely worth it (as it usually is).

The top was completed sometime in 2011 or 2012 (more evidence), backed and quilted at the end of 2013, and hand bound in 2014.  I backed it with a subtle Denyse Schmidt print.  I didn't want to use a print that was too busy since I wanted the diamond quilting to show well on the back.  For the quilting, I did straight line stitching with my walking foot in the neutral fabric.  Stitching the inner diamonds was a bit difficult (and time consuming to bury all the knots), but again completely worth it.  I love the diamond shape it created.

I am head over heels for this quilt.  When I showed it to my mom, she exclaimed that it looked just like a beautiful stained glass window.  Thus, I am calling this my "Stained Glass" quilt.

 Pattern: Half Square Triangle Diamonds
Fabrics: Good Folks by Anna Maria Horner, Amy Butler Lotus, Kona Cotton in Ivory.  Backing is Denyse Schmidt.
Quilted: Straight line machine quilted in neutral lines.
Started in December 2010 and completed in Winter 2014

Thursday, June 5, 2014

On planning

The idea of a quilt comes easily to me, the execution not so much.  With a few exceptions, I have generally sewn quilts using fabrics from the same fabric designer and line.  Some sewists tsk tsk at this, but I really don't mind.  It takes the guesswork out of figuring out which colors and patterns will complement each other.  Plus, those fabrics were quite literally made for each other.  But I wanted to branch out and challenge myself a bit for the mini quilt swap. 

I have a new appreciation for sewists who pair fabrics from different fabrics and lines.  It's not as easy as they make it look!  I intended to pull many different colors but to my surprise, I ended up pulling mainly yellows, greens, and blues. So I embraced these colors and created a new plan.

This is a pattern I have been wanting to make for a while now, using this little lovely as my inspiration. I'm excited to see this come together.  

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

And there were stars in her eyes

I've had a little swap envy recently.  I see pictures posted here and there of  lovely packages filled with quilty goodness people send and receive.  I want some of that in my mailbox too!  Not to mention the joy of making and sharing something that you know will be appreciated and loved by the recipient (one hopes anyway!).  So I jumped on the bandwagon and signed up for the schnitzel and boo mini quilt swap.

My partner loves bright colors as much as I do, and after careful stalking of her flickr and instagram, I saw she liked star quilt blocks too.  I have a few trips coming up and thought this would be a perfect opportunity to try my hand at some English paper piecing.  The deadline for the swap is still a month away but I am fighting my procrastinating nature and starting now so that I will enjoy the process rather than stress my way to the finish line.

Have you participated in any swaps lately? 

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Scrappy Trip Around the World

Last January, as I sat nursing and rocking Felix for hours, days, weeks, months, I developed a new appreciation of smart phones.  With my one free hand, I visited my favorite quilting/sewing blogs dreaming of a time in the future when I would have time to sew again.  One quilt I kept seeing over and over again was the Scrappy Trip Around the World quilt.  I had to make one.  Like right then right there.  So when I did manage to have two free hands, I dug through my scraps (and a few prints from my stash) and began cutting them into strips.
Have you made this?  The tutorial (found here) is rather clever but I did not find this quilt to be as quick as people claimed.  Though, admittedly I am a pretty slow sewist/quilter even on a good day.  Still, unpicking all those seams and sewing them together again was slow going.  Eventually, I just embraced it and found a little peace in the rhythm. 
I say this about most of the quilts I make, but I really love this quilt.  I love how you can throw a bunch of prints and colors together and they all work somehow.  Also, since most of the fabrics were scraps, it's a bit of a memory book of the many projects I have created over the years.

June also loves this quilt and has claimed it for herself.  She sleeps with it every night. I asked which colors she loved the most and, as predicted, she pointed to every pink print she could find. 
Fabrics: Mainly scraps.  Backing is the infamous Ikea Britten Nummer and some assorted prints from my stash (Amy Butler, Anna Maria Horner, misc)
Quilted: Running Stitch in horizontal rows (great description of this stitch found in Camille's post)
Started in Jaunary 2013 and completed in December 2013

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Single Girl Quilt Planning

This will probably be the first of many posts about this quilt.  Something tells me this will be a long work-in-progress.  I'm planning the king-size version - that's 620 pieces to cut! I'm hoping to have it completed by the end of the summer; just in time for me to throw over my bed for next winter.
I have over 70 prints of Anna Maria Horner's various lines that I have been hoarding collecting for several years.  I love everything she creates.  Last night I had a dream that Anna Maria came to my house to help me organize my sewing area.  She was a little taken aback at how big a job it was.  Even my subconscious is telling me to stop hoarding fabric!  What better way to showcase all these AMH prints than in the Single Girl Quilt.
For anyone who has made this quilt, can you please share your tips/knowledge?  What things do you wish you had known about this quilt (construction, etc) when you first started? 
P.S. Sharing this post with Freshly Pieced and My Quilt Infatuation this week.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

It's a Hoot, She's a Hoot



Another quilt from the vault of "things I made while on my three-year blogging break."  Another quilt I made for baby June. I finished this in the Spring of 2011.  These pictures were take in the Summer of 2013.  I can't believe how much she has grown since then!  But I digress - let's talk about the quilt, yes?  Oh half-square triangles, I love your versatility.  I wanted this quilt to be fun and bright and cheery.  Guess what?  Both the quilt and the girl turned out just exactly so.  Love this girl.
Pattern: Half-square triangle pinwheels
Fabrics: 2 charms packs of It's a Hoot by Momo and Kona Cotton in White.  Backing fabric is  turquoise and yellow polka dots.  Binding is Amy Butler's Lotus Full Moon Polka Dot in Lime.
Quilted: Free-motion meandering loops
Made for June
Spring 2011