Friday, September 30, 2011

Shop Update

I have a little etsy shop update this weekend.  I've been assembling a selection of novelty blocks to make a kit for the Retro Christmas Quilt from last year.  This kit has 82 pre-cut squares perfect for this project. Every single fabric is not identical to the ones in last year's quilt, but many are the same and all are cute and create the same look. Purchasing the kit includes the PDF pattern that I will email to you. 

So sorry. The kits are SOLD OUT.

The pattern is also sold separately on etsy. You can also get the pattern instantly here via Pulley.
This kit does not include the fabric for the rest of the quilt.  (To simplify and save on shipping for you all, I decided to just assemble the unique blocks. The rest is easy for you to find on your own.)  The rest of the fabric requirements are 3/8 yard red for cornerstones (I used a micro-dot but a solid would work too), 2 yards solid white, 1/2 yard binding and 3 1/2 yards backing.
I do have a handful of pre-cut backings available in the shop as well. Both are from Holiday Happy by Monica Solario-Snow for Lecien and coordinate with a lot of the fabrics in the kit. They are pre-cut to the perfect size for a 66" x 66" back, but do require sewing one seam.
In addition, I listed a Halloween Pennant Kit. This includes 20 different 6" x 5" die-cut pennant triangles. You could use them to make a bunting like I did last year. The fabrics are slightly different this year, but equally awesome and Halloween-ish.

It feels slightly wrong to post about Christmas and Halloween considering it's 90 degrees outside and I'm still loving wearing flip-flops - and in no hurry to stop.  I'm one of those who can't even listen to Christmas music until after Thanksgiving, but I wanted to give folks time to, you know, make the quilt before Johnny Mathis hits the airwaves. 

And now, I'm off to a football game with my husband on this gorgeous, last day of September. (sniff) And then, I am going to watch General Conference on Saturday and Sunday.  It's one of my favorite events of the year. I always come away uplifted and motivated to do and be better. I hope you have a great weekend too!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Brown and Blue Baby Quilt

I have had so many works-in-progress lying around over the past month or so, it's been kind of silly.  I've been working on this crib quilt for a little while now, but haven't wanted to show it until it was delivered to it's recipient at a baby shower last Saturday. The layout was inspired by this quilt, which I loved. And it sewed-up so fast!
I've been collecting little bits of blues and browns for a while now and waiting for just the right project. The back is a Michael Miller Disco Dot. I love that print. Quilting in aqua blue thread by my friend, Monica.

The other fabrics are from all over the map: Riley Blake, Moda, Lakehouse, etc. And all from the stash. Nice. This is the year I am going to bust that stash! No, really. I am.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hexagon pillow

A finally-finished project that I've been working on for, oh, maybe a year now? It's been a little carry-along sewing project since the end of last summer, at least.  You can see it in progress here and here. I hand pieced the hexagons, and hand quilted after they were all attached.
I loved working on this one because I used little bits of many of my favorite fabrics.  Some are old from the stash, some are new Flower Sugar or other Lecien prints. I think I need to do another. Besides, I need a new carry-along project! 

I'm slightly worried that this cushion is going to get requisitioned for building forts and jumping over hot lava.  I may need to have a family meeting specifically to announce that this cushion is off limits. (At which point I'm sure they will all collectively roll their eyes and wonder why Mom is such a weirdo.)

Now quickly, a couple of Public Service Announcements:
The Sewing Summit
It's the last week to register for The Sewing Summit! I can't believe this party conference starts in less than two weeks. I've been excited to go since I first heard about it a year ago. Woo!  This week is the final week for registration.  If some of you are still on the fence on this one, Erin and Amy just announced a special Saturday-Only deal that includes 4 classes, catered lunch, swag and other conference perks for Saturday, October 8. Go here for more details.
De-Stash 4 Malawi at LilypadQuilting
Finally, many thanks to Jacque for the heads up on this awesome opportunity to not only destash, but to feel totally heroic while putting that fabric you don't love anymore toward a superb cause. Jacque is hosting an opportunity to donate your un-needed fabric to the Kropfs who make clothing for orphans in Malawi, Africa so that they can attend school. I was so inspired when I heard about their efforts.  Visit LilyPad Quilting for the details.  Give away your fabric and your guilt all at the same time toward this sweet project - you could even win a prize. Thanks, Jacque for coordinating all of this!

PS. Thanks so much for the chair makeover love. I'm thinking you are all right - I'm going to leave as is. It's easier that way too. :)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Chair Makeover

One more post about a yard sale find. (I really never go yard-saleing - I just got lucky, 'happening-to-pass-by' two garage sales in my own neighborhood this summer.)  So at a yard sale down the street from my house I spotted these 2 chairs. $10 for the pair. They looked a little bedraggled but full of potential.
Here is the "after".  It only took me about a month and a half of looking at the chairs to decide what I wanted to to. So many colors and directions to go with these beauties.  In the end I decided I was feeling the 'scandinavian' vibe and went white.
I found the fabric at Ikea (see? Scandinavian!) on clearance for $4.50 a yard.  Here I am channeling my 'inner-Hildi' (remember Trading Spaces?) and upholstering for the first time. Never mind that it's only a small, flat cushion, I felt empowered by that staple gun.
I used white, gloss Krylon to paint the chair. Not fancy.  I probably need to add a coat of some kind of finisher, glaze or something and I'm undecided about whether or not to distress it a little bit.  I'll keep mulling it over for a few more weeks before I tackle the other chair as well.  It's still a work in progress.
Here's the nice 'before and after' shot.  My china-hutch re-do is still probably my favorite furniture makeover, but the chair is definitely a close second. Cost-wise per chair: Chair = $5, primer = $3.50, paint = $3.50, fabric = $2.25 for a total of $14.25. I think I can handle doing the other one.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Antique quilts

Last month I shared the vintage Red Lattice quilt from my husband's aunt's home in Maine. Today I'll share the two other antique quilts she let me photograph.  I love the simplicity of this red and white quilt. It's probably early 20th Century.  I think this was made by my husband's great-grandmother.
So basic and yet it makes such a nice graphic statement. Plus red and white is always so classic.   I think I want to make a reproduction of this one. I love everything about it.
Here is a close-up of the quilting. Part of the quilt is quilted with this circle/orange peel pattern (which I LOVE) and part is quilted with a simple straight-line, cross hatch pattern. Makes me wonder if there were multiple quilters and why the two drastically different patterns. To be honest, I didn't even notice it until writing this post. Funny.
The final quilt is this amazing 19th Century Log Cabin quilt. It looked equally amazing from a distance as well as close-up. 
Check out these fabulous fabrics.  Lots of madder-red hues in there. I wonder how much the colors have changed since the quilt was assembled? Because of the log cabin pattern and the fabric colors, my guess is that this quilt was made between 1870-1890. (I'm not ready to start as a judge on Antiques Roadshow - nowhere near a professional - but this site helped solidify my guess.)
This quilt felt very well-constructed, but fragile. The quilt was very light weight - it didn't feel like there was any batting. Not a lot of quilting either. It also had an interesting side with notches on two corners as if to go over pillows on a bed, so my guess is that it was made as a decorative bed-covering rather than for warmth or durability. 
I would be interested to know the history of this one.  It came through the family, but they were unsure of the details.  Another reminder to label your quilts. (Note to self: would you just start labeling your quilts!)  It was fabulous to see this beauty for myself. I had no idea of its existence so it was very fun to see and admire it up close. I love old quilts. They're one of my favorite kinds of quilts.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Awesome yard sale find + progress

I haven't done much thrifting lately. Mainly because it was summer and I didn't go many places alone. (Thrifting with 4 kids just doesn't sound that fun. Either they want weird stuff or they want to go home.) Also I spent the summer trying to eliminate clutter, rather than accumulate more. (You should see the piles of stuff I got rid of. Felt SO good.)  But one day I was out running and I ran past a yard sale and spotted this beauty.

My daughter took a sewing class this summer and I've been thinking about getting another machine for my girls to use. (Mainly so I don't have to share mine.) I thought about just getting an el-cheapo model, but I've been dragging my feet for a long time trying to decide what to do. Then I saw this sucker. It was only $20, and it looks like a nice model (heavy, metal parts, etc.) and seems to run fine. I'm going to take it in for a professional tune-up just to make sure. Does anyone out there have this machine? 
 Also, I've been working on my navy and green quilt. I even did the quilting by myself, on my own machine.  Simple cross-hatching, but you don't know how proud I am of this achievement.  I am usually terrified of ruining my quilts by quilting them myself. I've had a few people ask about this one - yes, I am going to do a pattern. I'm hoping to have it ready soon - or at least when I share the finished quilt.
 And finally, I'm still stitching away at soccer games.

Friday, September 16, 2011

New BOM and a great cause

More fabulous September. Sigh. I wish September would last for 3 months.

A couple of public service announcements to share today:
First, the very talented Jackie of Canton Village Quilt Works has introduced a brand new, free Block of the Month that starts next week! Each month, over the next 12, there will be a new block tutorial and next October Jackie will have the instructions for completing your finished quilt. I'm so excited to participate.  You can read all the details here.

Have you heard about 100 Quilts for Kids?  Katie at SwimBikeQuilt along with the DC Modern Quilt Guild have put together a quilt drive generating quilts for kids in need.  Basically you make a quilt and donate it in your own community. You can then link up to the quilt drive and be eligible to win a fabulous prize. You can read more about the details here, and you can see the list of prizes and sponsors here. Wow. Talk about a win-win!

Also, Madame Samm asked me to remind anyone participating in the Wantobe Quilter campaign that there are many great prizes (sewing machines, die cut machines, etc.) yet to give and that even though your information is registered, you must leave a comment on each post to enter that particular giveaway. Good luck!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Fabric love

Well, I succumbed.  I finally got my hands on some Denyse Schmidt Sugar Creek fabrics from JoAnn's.  These are my daughter's favorite colors right now, so I think they'll be a fun project for us to put something together for her room.  Now that Junior High is official, we're transitioning into 'big-girl room'. I think these will serve us well, don't you?

These fabrics are 30% off this week at Joann, including online. Just saying.
Then there's this pile.  I really have so many projects in the works right now I've been trying to just shop my stash (which is very fun as it is.) But then I found these three and couldn't walk away. The two on the right are from Joel Dewberry's newest collection, Heirloom. That orange floral just call's my name. (It's available here or here.) I've always wanted to make one of Amy Butler's bags and I think this is the fabric to use.

The lovely gray print is from Taza by Dena Designs for Free Spirit. It also comes in a perfect yellow. I don't know what to do with it, but I just loved it too much to leave it unattended.

And now, I must go on a fabric buying hiatus until I finish 5 unfinished projects. I'm making that declaration publicly so that I won't cave!
This is one of those projects in the works, thanks to the lovely generosity of a new friend.  Sweetwater's Countdown to Christmas.

Well, just as I was embarking on my fabric-accumulating-hiatus, this pretty bundle arrived on my doorstep. It's a new collection by Amanda Murphy called Veranda (available at Fat Quarter Shop).  There may even be some leftover to share - stay tuned!

Oh dear, so much fabric, so little time.

And now this post is why I cringe any time a neighbor or friend from my real life tells me, "I found your blog!" because I sound like such a nerd extolling the virtues of fabric. In my real life I don't walk up to people at church or PTA meetings or the grocery store wildly describing my latest obessesions in fabric. I don't even get that excited about it around my own family. But I know there are those of you out there like me who "get" this weirdness and I thank you for indulging me. (And so do my family and neighbors who are spared all the details of something they just don't appreciate like you and me. :)

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Garden Quilt Show

Some pictures of Amy McClellan's annual garden quilt show.

 This quilt was made by Xenia Stirland and just won the recent Riley Blake challenge.
 Here's a close-up. The detail and the quilting on this one were amazing.
 This gorgeous applique was made by Judy Fitzgerald.I love this vintage reproduction quilt made by our friend Pamela of French Knots.
This is a close-up of another one by Pamela. I love it too! It just looks scrappy and old and it's in one of my favorite color schemes. My full-size photo was blurry, but it's fun to look at the fabrics and the detail here.
 Does this one look familiar?

 Love the Chicken Little in Sandy Klop fabrics. This was made by Diana Long.

Love the 3-D detail on this laundry quilt. Pattern for this one here.
Perfect night for some scenery, quilts, and ice cream. 
(I'm sorry I can't share the ice cream part too.)