30 August 2011

Clutch project - CHECK!

Last weekend I finally finished the clutches I was commissioned to do for a wedding this Sunday. She has three bridesmaids but eight other honorary bridesmaids. She'd requested eleven of these cute little clutches. The pattern is here. (I've used Keyka Lou's pattern for a dog collar and maybe checkbook cover and they are so easy to follow. Great pictures. Easy instructions. Love them.) This was the pattern that the bride chose so I was happy to follow.
I met her at a fabric store back in June and picked out all the fabric. I'm pretty pleased with how they turned out. She seemed thrilled. I hope she was. And because I'm an extra super nice person, I made a twelfth and gave it to her as a gift. In exchange - although she didn't realize it - she's paying for one hotel night in New York. (Cripes hotels are expensive there. Thank goodness I'm sharing with two friends.) I just kept telling myself that that was why I was making these little dandies instead of something - anything! - else that I'd rather be working on. But they're done. Yesterday when I handed them over, I felt like I was turning in the massive end-of-term paper and that now I could truly enjoy my summer.

Two secret projects in the works that I'm itching to make so you might not be seeing much from me but Farmer's Wives blocks until the finished products are in the hot little hands of the recipients.  Hopefully soon.


23 August 2011

Just three Farmer's Wives

Very little going on this way, people.  Saturday was my birthday so I didn't get too much done other than lounging about and doing not much of anything.  It was lovely.  Exactly the way I wanted to enter my fourth decade.  

And it's been a blur trying to get those little clutches for the wedding finished up.  (I'm not sure why exactly I thought it was a good idea to do these.  Did $300 really sound like THAT much money???)  But I did manage to squeak out three little Farmer's Wife blocks.  It's a bit short of my current four-a-week goal, but a girl can only do so much. . .

Without further ado - 
Farmer's Wife blocks – Week 12
Goal: 145
Current: 29

That's 20% people!  1/5 of the way through the blocks for this baby!  Just please don't remind me that at the end there is laying out and sashing and quilting and binding. . .  One step at a time, please.

24 Country Path
25 Cups & Saucers

115 Arkansas Cross Roads
pattern found here - http://www.quilt.com/BlockOfTheMonth/1997/ArkansasCrossroads.html

20 August 2011

Minor surgery

Remember I showed you this quilt a while back?  I made that cute little sailboat on the back with all of my leftover triangles from the front? Well. . . when I washed it, I had some nasty fraying issues on the sail and another little bit just under the boat.  Since this is a baby quilt and will probably be washed a lot, that wasn't really going to work.  So I thought.  And I thought.  And then I took my little quilt to see my sweet friend Alice and she helped me get it sorted.

I found some fabric that coordinated and made a new needle turn applique sail and little fish.  Taking off the old sail wasn't an option since my lines of quilting went straight through it. Needle turn applique wasn't a skill that was high of my list of things to acquire but it was not so hard and I'm glad I did it.  I'm certainly not speedy though.  The little sail took me nearly an hour.  On the bright side, I kind of like the fact that the sail isn't quilted and is a bit more billowy - like it's blowing in the wind.  It gives it a bit more texture.  And, I wasn't really in love with that original polka dot fabric anyway.  It looked a bit washed out.  This new red sail makes a statement! (Not sure what that statement is other than "I'm covering up a mistake". . .)

Hope cousin Anna and new baby Zachary like the quilt. It is making its way to them now.  Finally.

16 August 2011

Do I really have to give it away?

Here's the completed wonky star quilt top. I'm going to admit that I didn't do the math correctly and it is kind of large for a baby quilt - 52" square.  But it is ADORABLE.  Once again, I want to keep it for myself but the beauty of the wonky star is that it is soooooo easy.  I could whip another of these up in a minute.  Or a few days, but you knew what I meant.

Details for those interested - background is Kaufman Kona Aloe.  I think that the center of each star are all Kona Solids as well and I suppose I could figure it out if someone really wanted to know.  Cute dog = Stella. 3/4 English bulldog, 1/4 American bulldog.  Not mine but I get to love her almost daily.  This quilt is for a woman who works at our bank.  This is her first baby and she doesn't know whether she's having a boy or a girl and hadn't worked out how they were decorating the nursery. I do have an interesting quilting plan for this so we'll see how it works out. Just have to find backing fabric now.

And finally, the kaleidoscope quilt top.  I've been done for almost a week but haven't had a chance to get a picture.  I didn't bother to take a pic of the back because it's not pieced and not that exciting.  Quilting was minimal on this baby. It's going to friends who are having a baby girl and are decorating her nursery in Beatrix Potter. It's a happy enough quilt and looks good from a distance.  All those points meeting up = frustrating.

And here are the Farmer's Wife blocks for the week.  I realized too late (or too late for me) that I finished Contrary Wife wrong.  Those orange squiggly bits should all be facing each other.  So I decided that this wife must be REALLY contrary.  But I liked it.  And I just wasn't willing to take the entire block apart, which was what it would've taken to fix it. The last block is my add on block.

Stats for the week -
Farmer's Wife blocks completed - Week 11
Goal: 145
Current: 26

21 Contrary Wife
22 Corn & Beans
23 Country Farm

114 A Dandy - found here - http://www.quilt.com/BlockOfTheMonth/1997/ADandy.html

11 August 2011

I need a design wall.

Before I go any further, let me apologize for this picture.  I don't know how to take pics in my house without them either being totally washed out by the flash or this sickly yellow color because I refuse to use a flash.  (I hate flash.)  But I wanted to show off these little bits of happy because I love them so.  I think this is going to be another baby quilt that breaks my heart when it leaves my house.  Of course, as I pointed out to Scott, I can - and probably will at some point - make another one very easily.  I love the way that, when laid all out on my bed, they kind of made the shape of a heart.  A pointy heart, but a heart nonetheless.  And if I can struggle through the chest cold that's decided to move in today, you may actually see a finished quilt top tomorrow.  No promises though so I don't have to make excuses when it doesn't happen.


09 August 2011

Oh dear me

Here is the start of baby quilt #5.  (Don't worry.  I haven't forgotten #4.  I have about an hour's worth of binding stitching left and that'll be all done.  Maybe I'll have it to show tomorrow.)  This little cutie is going to have lots of colorful brothers and sisters soon.  I've never done wonky piecing before but I LOVE IT - particularly after doing that kaleidoscope quilt where everything had to was supposed to match up.  Brutal.  I said some not so nice words and every single block was taken apart at least once.  Pitiful. Wonky stitching made me find my happy.  It made me come from a place of YES.  (I've been watching too much Bravo reality TV.)

And these are last week's contributions to the Farmer's Wife blocks.  I adapted this handy little gadget from Penny's yoyo along to help me keep track.  Since I should be doing three blocks a week to meet my 145 block goal, and it's week 10, I'm a little bit behind. . .

Week 10
Farmer's Wife blocks completed
Goal: 145
Current: 22


18 Century of Progress.  I hated the way this block looks in the book.  So like many others, I switched it up.  Once I finally post pictures of baby quilt 4, you'll see how much I loved those fat baby heads.
19 Checkerboard

20 Churn Dash.  This is so much darker here than in person.  And lunchboxes made me think of back to school.  I loved back to school.

113 Antique Tile.  Pattern found here - http://www.quilt.com/BlockOfTheMonth/1998/AntiqueTile.html


07 August 2011

Ms Jackson my intentions were good. . .

All day yesterday sitting at my machine trying to finish this quilt top, I had that Outkast song in my head. I really did mean to finish this quilt by the deadline.  I've been in such a post-vacation funk that last week, at the end of the day, all I wanted to do was sit on the sofa and soothe my broken heart with hours and hours of missed shows from the DVR. I just couldn't bring myself to sit in front of my machine. So the deadline came and went. I missed the party. Doesn't look like I'm the only one and I'll only be a few days late (I'll probably finish today) so I don't feel too badly.

I have so many more new things on my plate. Turns out that the two baby quilts that I have left (only two - HOORAH!!) are due in September, not October like I thought. Oops. Plus I took a commission to make 12 handbags for a wedding and I need to have those done by Labor Day. Looks like it's going to be a busy August and I won't have time to think about that big birthday after all. Which is probably vexing to those around me because I keep getting birthday gift idea requests and I can't think of a thing I want. Except maybe plane tickets. . .


04 August 2011

Hello new friends.

I'm linking up to the Small Blog Meet Up on Lily's Quilts.  My little blog has been around for a while and I seem to be picking up a bit more steam lately in terms of blog visits but it's still mostly friends and family who stop by to say hi.
Small Blog Meet
I'm supposed to write a bit about me and my quilting.  Here goes -
1.  I'm happily married for almost a year.
2.  I am mom to two furry kids.
3.  I'm very quickly approaching a scary birthday.
4.  I'm a quilter and knitter.
5.  I live so close to the beach but wish I had more time to see it.
6.  I LOVE to travel.
7.  I have the best job in the world and work for people that I love but still wish that I had maybe just one extra day each week to sew.
8.  My husband laughs because I say I'm going to sew but end up in my office reading quilting blogs.
9.  I feel like I need to have 10 of these facts.
10.  I adore blueberries.

I've been quilting now for about two and a half years.  Outside of one sad home ec sewing class (from which my mother still has the laughable mother's day apron), I didn't touch a sewing machine until a few years ago.  A friend and I decided in 2007 that we were going to learn to knit because we couldn't find any Christmas stockings that we liked.  Once I learned to knit, I realized that knitting stockings was pretty far down on my priority list.  Fast forward to 2009 and I still couldn't find those Christmas stockings so I decided that I wanted to learn to sew.  Quilting classes quickly followed.  I still haven't made those Christmas stockings. . . .

So, that's me.  Glad to meet you.