27 May 2013

Another spoonful of Butterbeans

Got a bit more done on my Butterbeans quilt this week. As you can see, it's super scrappy times with this quilt. It'll be a riot of color and pattern by the time I'm through. You know this girl loves her hexagons so I was itching to do this block.
And this one I just cut from other fabric scraps along the way. I was too lazy to pull out the big camera so this was an iPhone picture. Not so great. . .

Off to sew more. I have a quilt top that I'm so close to finishing and I have a bee block due tomorrow and a few pillowcases. It'll all get done. Somehow.

Hope you're having a nice Memorial Day too!!

19 May 2013


Have you heard about the Green Tea and Sweet Beans quilt?  I couldn't find a great link to Jen Kingwell's website but just google it and look around the interwebs.  It is FAB.

I watched with envy as many other bloggers worked on it over the past few years and finally spotted a finished quilt and pattern at QuiltCon this year.  My quilty friend Kim ordered the patten and we waited.  It's very heavy in applique which hasn't been my cup of tea (yet) so I loved it from afar and put it out of my head.  Then Kim got her pattern and I got the fever.

We've assembled a group of seven now - and an eighth honorary member who (probably) won't make the quilt.  Since we're southern ladies, we're calling our quilt Sweet Tea and Butterbeans.  A few of us have ventured in.  Several of us have collected and washed our fabric. It's all very exciting.

I went on the annual in-law vacation so had lots of hand stitching time since the weather at the beach was windy and chilly for the week we were there.  I finished the first block above shortly after we arrived and the second block the night before we left.

This picture was almost a catastrophe.  I set up my shot and snapped it and I walked back inside to see how the picture turned out.  By the time I walked back outside, my poor little block was barely holding on by a shell, ready to be snapped away by the wind.  Yikes.

I've got a few more blocks in the works, plus a few big projects that I'm itching to share so I'll be back soon, ya'll.  (That's the butterbeans talking. . . )


20 March 2013

Oh Liberty. How do I love thee?

Apparently quite a bit.  These little scraps are a new obsession.  To date I have 18.  Plus 8 more on the way.  And I have another 5 in my Etsy shopping cart.  I really should be stopped. . . (I need 42.)

I have a project in mind for these that is kind of burning a hole in my head.  And with every new little bit that arrives in my mailbox, I know that it's going to be FAB.


01 March 2013

Is it really over?

I thought and plotted and planned about going to QuiltCon for so long and it was over in a flash. How is that possible?? It was THE MOST FUN TIME EVER. Such an unbelievable sense of community to be in a huge building with your heroes and know that everyone (including your heroes) are just about as nerdy as you are. . .

Here are many pics. I apologize for the shakiness of some. My heart must have been pounding too hard to hold the camera still. . .

Does QuiltCon know me or what? It's like they knew I needed  portable coffee and that I have an addiction to roadie mugs. I believe this was the first of many purchases. I'd show more but I'm almost (but not terribly) embarrassed about the amount of loot that made it home. I departed Charleston with two bags. I came home with three. Enough said.

There's Jay McCarroll in the straw hat. Have I mentioned how much I love him? And this class did nothing to sway me. He was awesome - even when I totally dorked out and hugged him at first glance. (A good friend - and my wedding planner - said that I looked almost as excited in this picture as I did the day I got married. I'm not sure what that says. . .)
By the end of the day, I think (hope) he had forgiven me.
I apologize that this picture is really pretty bad. That adorable pregnant lady up there? Anna Maria Horner. And she is just as sweet as you imagine she would be. Those quilts? FANTASTIC. That lady has skillz. This class expanded my brain so that I could go to this class -
Denyse Schmidt. Be still my heart.

In 2007 I saw a book at Barnes & Noble and fell in love. It was Denyse Schmidt Quilts. I didn't own a sewing machine but bought the book because one day I wanted to learn to sew and I wanted to make quilts like the ones in that book. I poured over it. I made other people look at it. And two years later I got my machine and learned to sew. It wasn't solely because of Denyse but she was a catalyst.

I couldn't believe my luck that I actually made it into this class. I was terrified. How do you sew in front of someone like her? It was the best class I took. Not to take anything away from Jay or Anna Maria but this one was mind-bending. I learned to let go - which is a hard thing for a control freak like me. And it felt good. And she pulled my blocks off of that big old wall and used them as examples of what was beautiful. And my heart sang. And. And. And. I could go on and on forever, but I think you get the point.

I met new awesome friends. (Love the Butlers, even though they make me look like a miniature person.)
I met friends in person who I had only ever talked to online. HI TAMMY FROM MARMALADE!!

I took silly pictures in photo booths with Tamie,
and Alice.
I saw incredibly beautiful quilts both old. . .
. . . and new. This is Bolt by Rebecca Roach.
This won best in show, and for good reason. INCREDIBLE. Double Edged Love by Victoria Findlay Wolfe. 
And I tried to steal a kiss from Ron F-in' Swanson. Love that guy. . .

I came home exhausted but totally reenergized. I have so much to show you that we're working on. I'm excited for things to come.


02 February 2013

I'm going. . .

The Modern Quilt Guild is hosting a linky party for those of us lucky enough to be going to QuiltCon and I thought that I could introduce myself to my fellow QuiltCon attendees and reintroduce myself to my blog at the same time (since I've been absent for ever-so-long).

My name is Phoebe Harrell. I frequently lie about my age so I won't do it here as well. I just won't say it at all. I'm heading into my fourth year of quilting - and I can't imagine life without piles of fabric now. Here are five things you maybe didn't know about me -

1.  I grew up in Georgia and lived there most of my life. In 1999 I moved to California - just south of San Francisco - and loved every single minute of the two and a half years I was there. I miss living in California daily. I'm lucky enough to live in Charleston, South Carolina now and I love this strange, quirky little town. I will never live away from the coast again. Ever. Unless I can move to South Africa. But wait - I can't take my little dogs. They'd be eaten by lions. Never mind.

2.  I am a coffee FIEND. If I had a substance abuse problem, that would be it. I have one huge cup in the morning and then another huge cup at night about 9pm. Sometimes I have espresso during the day. Mostly it doesn't affect my sleep. . .

3.  I didn't learn how to drive until I was 24 years old. I just never had much interest. When I was a teen, all my friends knew how to drive and were so happy to do so that they would take me most everywhere. In early adulthood, I lived in downtown Atlanta and was surrounded by mass transit options. I learned to drive against my will and have never looked back. I now spend a great portion of my working day in and out of my car. Go figure. And I love my little MINI Cooper. Love.

4.  I love my MINI so much that I ordered him online, waited nearly two months for him to sail the Atlantic and sent out 30 handmade baby announcements when he arrived. His name is Bene - which in Italian means good. Because he is soooooo good.

5.  I have two tattoos - one small heart on my left collarbone that says "MOM" and Africa on my right ankle. I thought long and hard about both. Planned. Plotted. Drew tester tattoos and lived with them for weeks to make sure they were right.  I love them.  It's not for everyone but I don't regret either of them. They are who I am. Ubuntu. And I didn't understand the tattoo addiction until I got my second one. And now I think I need 47 more. . .

I'll be heading to QuiltCon with 7 other lovely ladies from my guild. I was fortunate enough to get into all three classes that I had dreamed about - Kitchen Sink Patchwork Skirt with Jay McCarroll on Thursday, Composing a Quilt with Anna Maria Horner on Friday and Improvisational Patchwork with  Denyse Schmidt on Sunday. I'm going to need to carry a paper sack for hyperventilation purposes at all times. I hope I get to meet lots of you there.

Happy Saturday!

17 November 2012

Is it just me?

Or do these look like two strips of delicious bacon??

That's where the mind goes when you're sewing too close to dinner time.

I got problemz. . .


21 October 2012

All that worry for nothing

I won't be auditioning for Project Runway any time soon but I finished my dress yesterday. There are some wonky bits involving the zipper but I'd give myself a B+. I think it's the PERFECT killer bee outfit with some leggings (it's pretty short - at least for me) and a black tshirt + lots of bee accessories.  I'll post pics when I've got the whole outfit on. Too bad I can't enter the costume contest at the party. . .

More sewing underway today. I'm working on bean bags for a carnival game, a block for my MQG and I need to make a quilt back, and get do some quilting today. YEEPS PEEPS.