Wednesday, July 16, 2014

WIP Wednesday and a fun freebie!

I seem to have a bad case of quilter's attention deficit. Maybe it's the laid-back Summer feeling, or the fact that sooo many beautiful fabrics that we saw from Spring Quilt Market are all coming out at once! Whatever the reason, I'm a little embarrassed to show you all the starts I've made in the past couple of weeks. But here are a few anyway!

First up an Instagram photo I shared last week as I started prepping for a retreat in early August. I cut a bunch of my Bonnie and Camille scraps into squares and then started making block piles...

I'm making Granny Square blocks using Lori Holt's book Great Granny Squared and using scraps from many of their lines. I think it will be fun to see how they all play together!

I can't resist an Anna Maria Horner line and Pretty Potent may be turning into one of my favorites. I've had Terry Atkinson's pattern, Hexie Garden, for a while waiting for the perfect fabric.  Thought it might be a nice combo, so I'll try a few blocks before I commit!

Have you seen the new Art Gallery line, Indelible? It wasn't on my list to watch for, but when my local quilt shop got some in I fell for the unusual combination of text, geometrics and nature-themed motifs. And one of my favorite color palettes of teal, coral, gray and gold.

I've had this free pattern for some time, wanting to try it but frustrated with the amount of cutting and waste involved. And then it dawned on me to cut individual 60 degree triangles, add a strip to each one and trim the strip even with the triangle. I think I may increase the size of the triangles a bit also. Can't wait to get further on this!

 And I've made some progress on my Flowering Snowball! I'm up to 16 blocks {out of 30} and thoroughly enjoying the process.

 Finally, I was so excited to see these lovely, FREE gift tags on the Martingale blog this morning. This one uses my "Hanging Around" design from Simply Modern Christmas. It's my favorite, but I'm a bit biased :-) Head on over to download your free gift tags!

That's it for today! Looks like I better get back to some sewing. Any tips on helping me focus???

For more WIPs visit Lee at Freshly Pieced!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Gypsy Kisses

Gypsy Kisses - from the fabulous book Material Obsession 2...

This has been one of those slow, but oh-so-satisfying projects.

 I started piecing the arcs last Fall when I was lucky and got a FQ bundle of April Showers.

With those completed, it turned into a waiting game until I could get the April Showers navy yardage that I wanted to use for the background.

Then came the slow process of appliquéing the arcs and the eyes to the background...

And although it's a big quilt, I decided to quilt it myself. There are some quilts where I just can't give up control of the quilting finish. After weeks of thought, I actually ended up with some very simple quilting. Realizing that the quilt is very busy and that any fancy design, probably wouldn't show up much anyway - I went with simple wavy lines around the arcs and stippling in the background. A gray thread on the arcs and a blue/gray thread in the background {both Aurifil 50 wt} turned out perfect.

This was a tough one to photograph - the navy makes the camera want to overexpose. Here's a snap of the full quilt, but I have to say it's prettier in person!

One of my favorites!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Red Letter Day

Red Letter Day ~ a new Thimbleblossoms pattern ~ super quick and fun one too! I'll let the pictures do the talking today :-)

I'm happy with the quilting too! I did a big "X" through the center of the quilt in both directions, then echoing straight lines, creating a "V" in each quadrant.

Backing and binding coordinate nicely with the front...

Making it a Red Letter Day!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Celebrate Christmas - a giveaway!

Christmas in July! I wonder where that started? Probably by a quilter who looked at her list of holiday projects and decided she'd better start in July!

Today I'm here to introduce you to a new book by the staff at Martingale. So whether you're starting your holiday projects now, next month or December 15th {like me}, this book is loaded with some great ideas! And if you're making gifts or your own holiday decor, I think you'll find some super cute quilts, pillows, table runners, and more!

Here are a few that really caught my eye:

This Chevron tree is awesome! Make it for a small apartment or home to serve as the holiday tree year after year. Or hang it in an entry-way or kitchen with a table of wrapped gifts underneath.

And how fun is this tree skirt? You can't go wrong with polka-dots! I love the colors in this one, but it  would also be just beautiful in more traditional Christmas colors.

I love the simplicity of this pretty woodland pillow. It's made with wools and could certainly be displayed beyond Christmas.

Have you noticed the holiday fabric arriving in your local quilt stores? I guess it's time to get planning!

So now to the fun part! Would you like to get a head start and win a copy of Celebrate Christmas? Leave a comment below and let me know what kind of holiday projects you like to sew. And are you a get-it-done early person? Or more like me and sewing holiday projects on December 24th? Be sure there's an email address associated with your comment and I'll pick one person to win an ebook on July 9th. Good luck!

For more chances to win, visit the other bloggers on the hop:

Thursday, June 26 - Stitch This!
Friday, June 27 - Silver Thimble Talk
Saturday, June 28 - Magnolia Bay Quilts
Monday, June 30 - Ruby Blue Quilts
Tuesday, July 1 - SewCalGal
Wednesday, July 2 - Hyacinth Quilt Designs
Thursday, July 3 - Gen Q
Saturday, July 5 - Quilter Chic
Monday, July 7 - Reanna Lily Designs
Tuesday, July 8 - The Teacher's Pet
Wednesday, July 9 - Amy's Creative Side

The book is available for purchase at Martingale or Amazon or ask for it at your local quilt shop!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Flowering Snowball

2014 may be the year of curves and quilt-alongs and using some of the long-hoarded stash.

I joined the Flowering Snowball QAL. This one has been on my list ever since I pinned it from Molly Flanders Makerie.

I started with a new collection - Emmy Grace, by Bari J for Art Gallery - and pulled from my stash in teals, pinks, greens, gold and charcoal, 50 fabrics in all.

Instagram photo
I splurged on a template set from Customplastic on Etsy. It made for some quick cutting!

And super easy to piece blocks! My 12" block has very gentle curves. Pinning the curves makes the sewing a breeze! The tutorial is here and the QAL starts here.

In other goings-on, I've pin basted and started quilting my Gypsy Kisses. So far so good!

Instagram photo
And the garden is flowering too!!!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Oh My Lucky Stars!

In January of 2013, I decided to join in on the Lucky Stars BOM hosted by Elizabeth at Don't Call Me Betsy. My experience with paper piecing had not been good. I'd tried it many years ago, pretty much trying to figure it out on my own {which was probably my first mistake}. My first paper pieced project was a very complicated Poinsettia wall quilt and although I finished it, I vowed to never paper piece again.

A couple of years ago, one of our talented local quilters, Marsha Bray, taught a paper piecing class for my guild. It's not your typical method, but one that uses freezer paper with no sewing through the paper and no tearing off the paper. I loved the method and dabbled a little bit.

The Lucky Stars quilt was the perfect opportunity for me to jump in with both feet! A monthly block was just enough to keep me going and I can now say that I can paper piece without reading Marsha's instructions! If any of you are local to St Louis, she teaches it at the Quilted Fox.

This week I put the last binding stitch on my quilt. Pretty proud of this one!

Love all the variations on the star...

Can I have a favorite? It's this one...

Twelve in all...

One of my favorite AMH prints on the back!

A year long quilt is a tough one for me. My color scheme changed as the year progressed. It turned out nothing like I had originally planned! But I think it came together well!

What can I paper piece next???

Friday, June 13, 2014

X and + quilt

I'm sure you've seen the x and + block - it's a very trendy pattern at the moment. I knew I would make one at some point, but couldn't come up with a fabric/color mix that suited me. Then I saw this one in American Patchwork and Quilting magazine {Feb '14} designed by Pat Bravo of Art Gallery Fabrics.

The plus signs are done in solids which really makes them pop and the colors create diagonal lines across the quilt top. It's not as readily noticeable, but the solid aqua/teal/mint backgrounds create diagonal lines in the opposite direction.

A little shot of the back of the quilt - a great black and white print from Ikea...

I started with a line called Rapture by Art Gallery and added some coordinating prints from my stash - many of them turned out to be older Art Gallery pieces.

The awesome wave quilting was done by Abby Latimer and turned out to be the absolute perfect design for this quilt...

So now it's one of my favorites!!!