Friday, September 28, 2012

I've Been a Bad Girl.

I made a new friend this week, she thinks she's all that and a bag of chips. I mean she is beautiful and has some crazy talents so I pretty much agree with her. I've been hanging out with her and even though she's a bad a**, I think I'm going to keep her around.

Her name starts with Janome and ends with Horizon.

I finally took the plunge and got my dream machine!!!

Janome Horizon

I have been thinking about it for awhile. I have been in a solid quilting hobby without breaks more than a week or two for a year and half, so I'm pretty sure I'm going to stick with it. I also am accumulating a lot of tops that I was dreading machine quilting because my Bernina had the throat space of a new born baby.

Mike got a motorcycle this past weekend and I was like hey, he finally gets the toy he's wanted for awhile, I should get mine. I justified it to myself that I will be using this machine WAY more than new clothes or fast food, or anything else really for that matter so it will be worth the investment.

I am so happy I got it! I have already quilted my first baby quilt on it and it was a dream... Now I see why people like machine quilting, especially when it doesn't feel like you're trying to wrestle alligators to get it to go through the machine! Plus, that was one of my four big things off my 100 Days of Hustle list!! 1 down, 3 to go! I am finishing up the binding today so hopefully I will have it ready to show tomorrow. EDIT: I just finished it and here's the finished product!
Finished Gypsy Dance

Here are a couple of the quilting closeups. Remember, I'm fairly new to this and was experimenting so don't judge me too harshly.

Gypsy Dance Corner
Gypsy Dance Border
Gypsy Dance Center

Once I have it for a few more weeks and actually find what I love and slightly dislike about it I will do a full fledged review. Until then,I reorganized my sewing space and purged some things I wasn't using and moved almost everything into pretty baskets! :) Everything that is still in plastic I have covered with mini quilts to hide their ugliness..

Sewing Room

Sewing Room Storage

I have some exciting news happening in the next couple of weeks, so stay tuned for that! I can't say what it is yet but it's gonna be really cool!

Adios! And Happy Friday!

Linking up to Finish it Up Friday and TGIFF!

Monday, September 24, 2012

100 Day Hustle

Kelsey Sews

So I have not sat down and written up my to do list other than for swaps and bees in a really long time. By really long time I mean that I don't think I ever have had the balls to do it. So to join the gang over at Kelsey Sews, I decided to organize my thoughts and prioritize my projects.

1. Finish hand quilting my best friends quilt. (It's about 3/4 the way there but I have a hard time remembering to do it.. She got married in March, I'm a bad friend!)
Wedding Quilt Hand Quilting Detail

2. Piece the top for my cousin's king size black and white quilt. (I finally cut out the pieces to work on the wonky stars and I am 4 in, at least I've started!)
Sew In Wonky Stars

3. Quilt my coworkers' baby quilt. (I have had this done for at least a month if not two but I'm not sure how I want to quilt it/have better things to do than baste it in preparation for quilting..not really, I'm just not looking forward to that part.)
Cosmic Burst Top

4. Make some bad ass swap projects. (I have done several swaps in the past and have been happy with what I've done but I want to wow some people with what I can do and challenge myself to try things I've never done before.)

Those are the things that absolutely have to get done by the end of the year. Other stuff is for me and people aren't waiting for it. I think if I limit myself to only working on these 4 projects then I will have enough variety to keep me interested yet will be able to knock them out in a timely basis. Let's see how I do!

Monday, September 17, 2012

My First Sew In

There is Dallas Modern Quilter's Guild here in town that I've been wanting to join for the past year. The meetings were on Thursdays and I couldn't go due to my work schedule. I have moved some things around to be able to get off for the meetings so now I can be a part of the DMQG!

I'm really excited to be a part of a group that understands the work that I'm doing and also can relate to me as a 23 year old! As soon as I realized I could take part, I signed up for the next event, a Sew In this past Saturday.

I have never done a Sew In, the closest I've done is a class, which is way different. I wasn't really sure what to expect, but I gathered my machine, some projects, a large Coke from McDonald's and set on my way.

I brought several projects to work on, but the ones I knew I needed to focus on were my Mario Quilt, and starting the wonky stars for my cousin Tonya's quilt. I have mocked that one up in TouchDraw as well so I'll share that when I get a chance.

I almost finished sewing together the rows of the Mario Quilt, with only 2 mishaps on getting a block off and having to rip out several seams to get back on track. Luckily I brought my seam ripper!

I had to stop when I realized I was one skin square short so then I moved onto my wonky stars.

Sew In Mario Progress

> These stars will be bordering the main panel, which will be black and white appliqu├ęd cats. This will be a kind size quilt and I need 30 of these 9 inch blocks to complete the first border.

Sew In Wonky Stars

I completely finished 4, and I had the wonky star tips ready for about 5 more when it was time to leave. Overall, I am very happy with the progress I made and I'm excited to take part in the next one in October!

Sew Happy Geek

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Mike's Quilt

So when I started dating Mike, a year ago this month, he asked for a quilt. I told him that if we made it 6 months that I'd make him one. We made it six months, so I asked him to start thinking of what kind of quilt he would like. He found 3 he liked and settled on a triangle solids quilt. I bought the die for my Accuquilt Go and everything and then Angela at Cut to Pieces came up with a Super Mario Quilt Along and I was like, "hey, this looks cool!" Mike took a look at it and said that he wanted that quilt instead.

With each block being made of 324 individual squares, I told him that he will not be getting the whole quilt, but if he wants to pick one block I will blow it up and turn it into a quilt. I love him but I don't love him 3,888 individual squares worth.

He said that would work so I started drafting up a design. I adapted Angela's design and added some grass and then will be adding "Super Mike" on the top and bottom.

Mike's Mock Up

By the way, if you have an iPad and you quilt, DOWNLOAD TOUCHDRAW. It is the best app to design quilts on your iPad with. It's fabulous!! Lily over at Lily's Quilts has several tutorials on how to use it as well. Do it. It is totally worth it.

Anyways, I set about cutting the 324 squares today and realized I don't have enough green so I will need to go get some of that tomorrow.

Mike's Squares

I recently joined to Dallas Modern Quilt Guild and there is a Sew In this Saturday so I am going to work on this quilt then! I'm so excited to meet people who like modern quilting and get what I do in real life!! I will also be taking several other projects so I will make sure to give you and update of what I get done at my first ever Sew In!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Bee Blocks Complete!

Bee Blocks for September are complete! My weekends are super busy this month so I sat down and knocked them all out early this month. Here is a run down of the crew, some of them you've already seen, since I am queen bee for two of them!

My Favorite one this month: Beejeebers

BeeJeebers September Block

HARMONY. do. good. stitches.

HARMONY. do. Good. Stitches September Block 1
HARMONY. do. Good. Stitches September Block 2

Stash Bee

Stash Bee September Block 1
Stash Bee September Block 2

We Bee Modern Too

We Bee Modern Too September Block

P.S. I am almost to 100 followers! I'm trying to think of something good to do for everyone that has supported me this past year! I've really been able to grow and learn with your help and inspiration so I'll be putting something together to thank you!!


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

My Boston Streets

For my LQG we have a vintage pattern challenge this month. We have to use a vintage pattern to make something new. I already had made a quilt top from Link to the 30's, my Chain Link, but I wanted to make something special for this challenge.

I was looking through some vintage quilt blocks online and came across a block that I really liked called Boston Streets. You can read more about it here. Basically, it's a quilt design from 1936 from Nancy Cabot's column in the Chicago Tribune.

Aptly described as: "BOSTON STREETS is one of the most perfectly named quilt blocks in existence. It was named by an elderly woman of Colonial days who tried to find her way down the old cowpaths to her homestead after visiting friends. This pieced pattern is an ideal one in which to utilize all the odds and ends of material accumulated during the course of years of quilt making."

I decided that I wanted to blow this block up and make it into a wall hanging. I set about mocking it up in Touch Draw, my favorite drafting app and started looking for a color scheme that I wanted to try out.

Boston Streets Mock up

My intention the whole time with this piece was to make something from a vintage pattern but to make it feel modern and new, so that's why I chose to use solids and to use an updated color scheme of white, red, tan, brown, and robin's egg blue.

Boston Streets Vintage Pattern Main Panel

Once I put the top together I knew I wanted a simple border and I wanted to make a statement about the modern reference so I decided to frame it in all white. I also decided to border it off-center to again play to the non-traditional point of view.

Boston Streets Border

Looking back, I wish I would have made bigger borders to emphasize the off-centeredness even more, but hey, hindsight is 20/20. I wanted to keep the quilting very clean so I went with a 1/4in on each side of each seam to make a grid. I bordered it in brown to frame the piece and hand stitched the binding on my trip this weekend. The piece finished at 36"x36".

Boston Streets Finished

And of course the fur children decided they wanted in on the photo shoot as well...

Boston Stand Ins

Overall I am happy with the piece and am excited that this is this first piece I am actually going to hang on my wall as "art"! I hope the ladies in my guild get what I was going for, if not, at least I like it...

Linking up to:
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A Simple Gift

This past weekend my boyfriend and I made a road trip to Atlanta, GA to visit his mom. This was the first time I met her and I wanted to give her a thank you gift for inviting us to visit and keeping us fed and homed for the weekend.

When I asked Mike what she liked I got the expected guy answer, "well, I dunno." I decided to take a different approach and give examples of things I could make and see if one of those flipped the switch.

Pillow? No.
Potholders? No.
Pouch? No.
Baskets? No.

Then I started getting desperate.

Bedside pocket? No.
Mug rug? No.
Apron? No.

Seriously Mike? Would she want anything I make or should I just get a bottle of wine?

Finally we decided on a set of placemats to match her kitchen, which is decorated in chefs with a red, black, and white color scheme. I had never made placemats before and I couldn't find a pattern or tutorial that I liked so I drew an idea up in Touch Draw to see if Mike thought she would like the idea I was thinking of.

Placemat Mock Up

He said go forth with the plan and so I did. I only had about 5 hours of free time from that point to the point we were leaving so I started banging them out. I made four matching placemats and luckily ran into no problems along the way so I finished them all without rushing.

Here's a picture of one of them.


I gave them to her and she seemed to really like them so hopefully they get some use! Plus, now I know how to make placemats!

HARMONY. do. Good. Stitches Queen Bee

This month I am the queen bee in the HARMONY. do. Good. Stitches Bee and so I was trying to find a block that would use scraps but also look good together and wouldn't have to be super matchy matchy since they will be coming from around the country.

converging corners quilt top

Photo courtesy of Film In The Fridge

I decided on the converging corners block, from Film In The Fridge. I'm excited to see how the blocks turn out. I asked for bright scraps with a white background. I'll keep you updated as they come in!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

BeeJeebers Queen Bee

Yay! It's finally September and I get to see what this wonderful group of ladies make for me! Everyone has had such awesome blocks and so hopefully this one shapes up to their creative standards.

I wanted share with y'all how to create this block as well!

I took inspiration from a tutorial I saw and have made a couple of small changes to it so please make sure you note them.

Rainbow Stash Star

BeeJeebers September Block

Inspiration Tutorial

Changes to Make:
Step 1: Cut your four beginning squares to 8.5 inches square
Step 2: Mark your lines 3 inches from the corners
Colors: Imitate the color scheme of the test block I have made, using black as the solid and using the colors below and in that order for the tips.

Each quadrant should have one side of each color.

Note: Make sure you check and make sure which side of the tip the color is on before you start to sew, I almost tripped up a couple of times!

Top Left: orange and yellow
Top Right: green and aqua
Bottom Right: blue and purple
Bottom Left: pink and red

Feel free to use any fabrics, just make sure the read the color of the tip that they are in.

The block should finish at 16.5 inches square.

Again, if you have any questions just let me know!

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