Tuesday, March 20, 2012

New Tools

After the addition of my new machine in December, I did some major rearranging.  I'm really happy with how my Sewing Lab looks now, but I don't really have a place for my other sewing machines.  

With my constant obsession with rearranging, I need my furniture and accessories to be flexible.  With that in mind, I purchased a table insert for my SewEzi table which will allow me to switch machines at will rather than having custom inserts for each machine.  The insert just arrived, and I think it's going to work great for me.

 I still have the custom insert for when I use Nina (my Bernina), but when I want to use my Featherweight (still unnamed) or my little Juki (freebie with my new Juki and also unnamed) I can just pop in the SewEzi table insert.  The two little machines will be used for piecing blocks rather than quilting, so I don't think the lack of an extension table is an issue. 

These books also arrived while I was gone this past weekend.  I am super excited to learn how to take better photos of my quilts, and really needed Denyse's new book since she'll be the keynote speaker at QuiltCon (like anyone needs a reason for a new book!).

Happy stitching....and reading!

Monday, March 19, 2012


Who knew when traveling for a baby shower that I would be the one coming home with a quilt?

I scored this beautiful antique baby quilt!  Isn't is pretty?  It is super soft and in great condition.  In case you are thinking I should have given it to the parents-to-be, I did offer, but they declined;-)  

I didn't get a picture of the quilt I gifted at the baby shower, but I took a photo of the cute onsies decorated.  There was quite some creating going on at this party!  I am amazed at the uniqueness of each siggy block signed.  I am waiting to show those until I get them all back....some were mailed to distant friends and relatives.

My connecting flight back was delayed by several hours which meant I didn't get home until the wee hours of the morning.  Luckily for me, there was an exhibit in the airport of sewing machines.  Wasn't that convenient?

My daughter was mortified when I pulled out my camera from my carryon bag inside the airport.  I don't know why....I wasn't taking any pictures of her, and it wasn't as if we knew anyone there ;-)

It was difficult to get clear pictures with the glare from the glass cases and the backlighting of the terminal, but I did my best.  This case displayed children's sewing machines.

Don't you love these antique irons?

My daughter couldn't believe this book, and shortly after expressing disgust that I had my camera out, insisted that I take a picture of the Teen Guide to Homemaking.

Contrary to what my daughter thinks, I didn't take a picture of every display.....but I wanted to....

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy Days!

Happy St. Patrick's Day and International Quilting Day!!!
 Hope you have exciting plans for this day!

By the way, I did update my previous post a little bit now that I am back on the ground;-)

Friday, March 16, 2012

Sew & Tell Friday #56

Wouldn't you know I had Internet and photo loading issues with this post so now typing it up quickly on my iPad before the plane takes off!

Here's the baby boy stroller quilt made for this weekend's baby shower. The quilt was inspired by Jolene's star quilt  but made smaller to accommodate the baby stroller/car seat size as suggested in this tutorial.

Here's the back. Ok. Maybe I'll edit this post once I land. I'm being told to turn off all electronic devices. Stay tuned for more details.

Edited now that I am off the plane and have wifi.....So, this is the first baby quilt that I have ever made!  I have made one or two toddler quilts, but never one for a baby.  Hopefully, the parents and the baby will love this one.  The quilt is super soft.  The backing is flannel from Children at Play.  I'd have to go back to an earlier post to remember what fabrics I used for the front, but those are soft too.  I used a green fabric for the binding and the ties.  I am not sure about the safety issue with these ties.  They are designed to hold the quilt in place on a stroller and car seat so the quilt doesn't slide off, but I worry about any strings near the baby.  They can easily be cut off if the parents decide against the ties.  I quilted straight lines with my walking foot on either side of the blocks and then again around each star.

I was able to link up with Amanda's finish it up Friday, but ran out of wifi on the plane before finishing the link at Amy's Sew and Tell Friday.  

- Posted using BlogPress from Rene's iPad

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Reinventing the Wheel

Do you ever spend more time thinking of a new quilt project than it takes to actually complete the quilt?  Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this.

I don't know why I feel the need to come up with something different rather than just following the pattern.  After this previous post about siggy blocks for a baby shower, I went back to Julie's layout for the second  modern siggy swap.  Just think how much time I could have saved myself!

I used shot cottons for the colored strips, and the inside portion will eventually have the baby's name pieced or something along those lines.  None of the blocks are assembled together yet.  The finished layout will be determined by the number of blocks signed, etc. and any additional sashing and/or borders.

I have a variety of Sharpie markers and Micron pens for the mom-to-be to choose from.  I wrote on several blocks and then washed them multiple times to make sure the colors didn't run or fade.

I'll report back after the baby shower.  From what I understand, instead of games, there will be quilt block signing, onesie decorating and scrapbook page making!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

What's Up Wednesday: Blooming

No sewing pictures to share today as it's been a paperwork kind of day.  
Instead, how about a picture representing the spring like weather we are experiencing?

The tabebuias are blooming all around town.  I spotted this yellow tree several years ago and couldn't resist getting out of my car to take a picture.  There is a row of gorgeous pink tabebuias trees not far from my house, but as they line a busy road I have yet to get a picture.  

Happy Wednesday to you!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Which Way?

These extra half square triangles from the No Worries quilt have been on my design wall for months now.  Every so often I would glance at this mini and consider finishing it for the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative.   

Yesterday I sat down and did just that.  The quilting lines echo the flying geese. The backing and binding fabrics are from Aneela Hoey's Little Apples.

Here's a sneak peek at the quilting on the baby stars quilt.  I'm so excited that this quilt is almost done!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Not Quite a Friday Finish

I started this blog post early Saturday morning hoping to at least show that my Friday finish was only a few hours late, but eventually decided it really didn't matter if it was a few hours late or a few days late, late is late, right?

This baby quilt flimsy was to be my Friday finish, but I didn't quite finish in time.
My middlest was home for spring break last week, and I was happy to sew a few hours in the morning while he slept in and then happy to be available for whenever he wanted to hang out with me.  I did have a stretch of time that allowed me to finish the quilt while he worked on a school paper, but that was the day this book arrived on my doorstep.

I emailed Amanda and jokingly told her my lack of a Friday finish was all her fault.  You see, instead of sewing I decided to read, and read I did.  I read Sunday Morning Quilts cover to cover (taking my time to enjoy every word rather than racing through as is my usual practice), and I have to say this is one fabulous quilt book!  I could go on and on about the wonderful tips and projects Amanda and Cheryl included in their book, but that would make for a very long blog post, so instead my suggestion is you get a copy and see for yourself ;-)

I think this is my favorite block.....
 OK, back to the baby quilt top.  Originally, the star blocks were to be alternated with siggy blocks signed at the baby shower, but the parents-to-be switched their color scheme, so I stopped at the 16 star blocks already made and pieced them together for a stroller/car seat quilt.

.....or maybe this is my favorite block.
 The idea for a stroller quilt came from this tutorial on Moda Bake Shop, but the idea of the star blocks came from this quilt of Jolene's.

Max usually follows me around when I'm photographing quilts, but this morning he decided to chill out on the back porch instead.

I should have a Friday finish this week because the baby shower is Saturday!

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Yesterday's guild meeting was even better than expected!
Not only did we have an awesome meeting with excellent attendance including quite a few guests, but I got presents!

The guild presented me (and the other officers) with a very sweet card and a pretty bag full of fat quarters from the members.  I didn't get a chance to truly delve into the bag of fabrics until this morning, and I love the variety of fabrics.  I am touched that included in the gorgeous collection of fat quarters, was a beautiful piece of fabric from guild member Heather who recently moved out of state.

Additionally, the guild gave me a generous gift certificate to The Sewing Studio where we hold our monthly meetings, and I used the gift for this jelly roll of Amy Butler Lark and a stack of fat quarters.  



Kathryn took this picture to show my empty cubby once I handed over the presidential OMQG paperwork, etc.  Well, the cubby now displays my fabric gifts ;-)  The Orlando Modern Quilt Guild and its members rock!  

Speaking of sweeeeeet, look what literally just arrived in my mailbox!!! 
I love the cute picture of Amanda Jean and Cheryl shown on the inside back cover;-)
I've only had a chance so far to just peek inside, but trust me, I know what book I'll be reading today.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

What's Up Wednesday: Progression

Today I'm off to my first Orlando Modern Quilt Guild meeting as a member who isn't the President, and I. can't. wait!  We have such an awesome group, and I am looking forward to sitting back this morning, listening to the other officers present and chatting with fellow guild members!

Packing up my stuff for the meeting sure didn't take as long as it usually does.  All I need today is my name tag, BOMs, show and tell and my checkbook to renew my dues.  Someone else gets to bring the Agenda, Sign in sheet, Membership Forms, notes, ideas and answers ;-) 

My first EQ7 quilt design.  I have been putting off learning the program because I have PC issues.  My issue with the PC is that I can't figure out how to use them.  I am so a Mac girl!  (I am also a purist in that I don't want to taint my Mac subdivide my Mac in order to use certain PC programs such as Electric Quilt and Dear Jane, so I use an old, cheap-as-I-could-find PC for these purposes.)   My EQ rendition is supposed to give the parents an idea of what the quilt will look like in their colors, but when I showed my two youngest children they only saw Tic Tac Toe.

I was asked to make signature blocks (which will be made into a wall hanging) to bring to a baby shower, which meant I needed to figure out the type and size of block and the eventual layout.  Michelle suggested X's and O's for Hugs and Kisses which is brilliant, and I immediately saw these two siggy quilts on Flickr.  Usually, I have to spend hours to find a picture of what I'm thinking ;-)

I also made a sample X block to see if I liked the size.  These are larger than the siggy blocks made in the Siggy Swap.  Each quadrant is a 6" finished block, whereas the Siggy Swap blocks were 3" I believe.  
If you were to write a message to a baby, how much room would you want and/or need?  Seriously....I need some help with this.  Once I decide on that, find out how many total signature blocks required (40 I think), and the size of the wall space allotted, I can proceed.

I spent some time yesterday sewing all the wonky star points for the remaining baby star blocks.  Later today, well probably tomorrow if I'm being realistic, I will square these and finish assembling the blocks.  

Wouldn't it be great if I had it finished in time to show on Friday?

Monday, March 5, 2012

Two For One

When making blocks for our guild's Block of the Month, I usually make two - one to turn in for the block lotto and one to keep with the idea of making an annual BOM sampler.

Happy Zombie's Nut block
April's block is perfect for this habit because we are making Monica's Funky Wrench Nuts and Bolts, and following Monica's instructions you end up with two blocks, the Nut and the Bolt.

Happy Zombie's Bolt block
I knew right away that I wanted to use Malka's Stitch in Color fabrics for these April blocks.  This is the first time I've cut into them, and I can't wait to use them again.

I finally have another 36-patch block to add to my collection.  I switched to piecing these following the Leader Ender method while working on other projects so it's slow going.

Here are the eight 36-patch blocks I have so far.

One more shot of the latest 36-patch block.
I kind of like the combination of scissors and pink high heel shoes ;-)