Monday, October 31, 2011
Friday, October 28, 2011
Early last spring I made a red and white Churn Dash quilt as a challenge from a quilt retreat out of pretty traditional quilting fabrics. I really enjoyed making it and liked the finished product. All summer I wanted to try the same block with a modern feel. Finally this fall I picked the fabrics and went for it. And here is the Modern Churn Dash quilt.
This quilt has been on a journey.
The quilt was nearly finished with the binding machine sewed to the front of the quilt, and I was planning to hand sew the back before the Sewing Summit.
Well that didn't happen. I just showed the quilt with the binding unfinished. Sigh. (Picture thanks to Trish.)
So I took the quilt with me on our recent road trip to a couple of the National Parks in southern Utah. (I'm so grateful that I don't get carsick. I love all that time for hand sewing!) I thought while we were there I would snap a quick picture by the side of the road to change things up from all the pictures I usually take at my backyard fence. My husband realized what I was doing and convinced me that since we literally at Bryce Canyon National Park, for crying out loud, we should use that one-of-a-kind landscape as a backdrop.
I'm glad he talked me into it. He even climbed out onto a ledge to get a good shot (at his own insistence. I was trying not to freak out.) So there we were with all kinds of tourists walking past us, my husband on the edge of the canyon holding up a quilt while I took a bunch of pictures. Our kids hid from embarrassment while we did it. But it's a pretty awesome shot.
Here's what Bryce Canyon looks like without quilts in the way. It's pretty amazing.
So is my husband. He even figured out how to make children's clothing out of plastic bags once.
To make this quilt I figured out a quick method to put two blocks together at the same time with next to no fabric waste. I finally put it all in a pattern which is now available here or on etsy.
Thanks for stopping by! Enjoy the rest of the Blogger's Quilt Festival!
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Monday, October 24, 2011
In the wild, happy, fun craziness that this month has been, I did not get a chance to properly show-off this quilt with it's most adorable accessory. This is my new little niece who is now a month old. Is that hair to die for? I'm having baby-hair envy. My own sweet babes had a few lovely wisps, which is better than their mother had. My parents called me Kojak when I was a baby. In the most loving way, of course.
I SO love the prints and patterns and colors in Anne Sutton's Lily and Will II collection. Girly and babyish without being cliche and saccharine. The fabric came out last year and is harder to come by now, but there is still some yardage available at Fat Quarter Shop. Burgundy Buttons is out of yardage, but does have some pre-cuts.The tutorial for this quilt is at Moda Bake Shop (here).
[And due to my post-summer brain mush, there was a corretion in the sashing yardage that was required. I had not listed enough. So if you already printed the tutorial and headed off to your local quilt store before last week, I am dreadfully sorry. All is correct as of 10/19.]
And there you have it. Isn't life sweet?
We had a great family vacation to a couple of the National Parks in southern Utah. Gorgeous scenery and weather. It was good to get away from life for a bit. And the greatest part was my kids were so great in the car. I think there is a distinct possibility that road trips may actually be fun for the next few years. We're going to have to capitalize on this golden age we've got going before we're inundated with teenagers. And I mean that in the most loving way.
Friday, October 21, 2011
|Midway Utah, on the way home from this place|
It's Fall break from school here in Utah and we're having a little bit of family time.
But I wanted to pop in and say hi.
I'll be back next week with lots of new stuff, including some finally finished new patterns.
Hope you're having a great weekend where you are.
\We're enjoying gorgeous fall weather and foliage. I love it.
Posted by amy smart at Friday, October 21, 2011
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
This quilt was made by my own dear mum. She has been carrying around these Aunt Gracie flowers for a while now. She hand appliqued them with the black thread to give it an extra vintage look. She has a great 30's stash and it was fun to watch her pull from it for this quilt. (Not the greatest pictures on a bright sunny/shady day. We may need to re-shoot this one sometime.)this quilt, she made another. This one now happily resides on my sister's red couch and looks smashing in the process.
In other news, if you're a Utah local and want to come hang out and sew with other stitch-y friends, check out this little quilting retreat hosted by Pam of French Knots. I'm keeping my fingers crossed to get away for one of those days of sewing.
Also, the winner of the Sewing Summit Swag has been notified. Thanks to all those who entered for your sweet comments.
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Typically lining up the edge of your fabric with the right side of your presser foot is a good guide for keeping your seam allowance consistent. You can buy a specific quiter's foot with a 1/4" seam allowance for your machine (newer ones may come with it) but if you're like me, I didn't want to spend the extra money and it seemed close enough. Then I took a class from Leslie Ison where she explained how much more effective it is to use a scant 1/4" when pieceing - especially when you are piecing a more complex block.
Above is are two seams on either side of a drawn line. On the right I just used my regular presser foot with the needle centered. On the left I adjusted my needle one space to the right and still used my regular presser foot.
So get out your ruler and measure your seam allowance. Making adjustments may be as simple as moving your needle one notch to the right, but sewing with a scant seam allowance will make a difference in your piecing. Especially if your piecing smaller, detailed blocks - like those cute Farmer's Wife blocks. Give it a whirl and let me know if it makes a difference for you.
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
The Sewing Summit has come and gone. Holy cow, it was fun. I think I'm still in a daze and trying to recover from the sewing/people/fabric/fun overload. I loved every minute of it. I don't get to hang out with sew-y friends very often, so this felt like such a treat. Sadly, I was terrible about remembering to pull out my camera. And the pictures I did take didn't turn out so hot (inside a hotel is not the best picture-taking environment.) But I have enough (and stolen a few) to give an impression.
The fun began with this group on Friday. After a morning of visiting fabric shops and running into new Sewing Summit friends along the way, I visited Art Market - a collection of handmade goods by local artists - with Amy, Amy, Dana and Leigh, where we ran into Kristie and Samantha fresh from Canada. Kristie and I have corresponded and she had sent me an adorable Union Jack purse this summer. It was so fun to meet her in person! (Photo thanks to Kristie @OCD Obsessive Crafting Disorder)
Also oven-fired pizza was consumed and we were entertained by Dana in the process.
Here are a few more of the great folks I happened to get pictures with. There were so many fabulous people I did not get pictures of. (Kicking self.) Including my hilarious roommate. How did that happen?From top left moving clockwise: Lee, me, Amy, Elizabeth, AnnMarie, me, Amy, Allison, Melissa, me, Amanda, Amy, Emily, Leigh, and me again.
And this is only a smidgen of the many fabulous people who were there.
Too many sewers (sewists?), so little time!!
Can I just say that it is kind of surreal to walk into a room full of people that you "know" but don't actually recognize in real life. It's kind of an intimidating feeling. I wished that everyone could have walked around with their blog headers tattooed to their foreheads so I would have recognized them instantly. Instead I was trying to nonchalantly look at the name tag hanging on their chest (which is kind of awkward, as you can imagine.) But it is so much fun when you do connect a face with a blog - esp when it's someone you know well! I felt like all weekend I was saying "OH! YOU'RE . . . (insert blog name here)!" A HUGE thanks to those who kindly introduced yourselves to me - I loved meeting every single person!Jeni, Amanda's houndstooth bag (made by Colleen), Jessica rocking the Denyse Schmidt and this AMAZING paper pieced lanyard. Tiny!
I think one of my favorite classes (and the one where I remembered to bring my camera) was Improve Piecing taught by Jess of Urban Patchwork. Jess is an amazing and inspiring quilter. I made an improv-pieced block (see photo at the top of the post) and was reminded how much I enjoy it. I need to do it more often. The gal on the right with this pretty pile of scraps is Jennifer of Ellison Lane. Jennifer was my fabulous TA/Vanna White who was invaluable helping me during the class I taught.
I think that Saturday night was my favorite. Ate downtown by Temple Square with a bunch of great ladies including the wonderful Melissa, Trish and Amy again. (There were SO many Amy's there!)
I also hit the BabyLock sewing room for a late night sewing binge. That place was humming. It was so much fun to be surrounded by lots of other talented and happy sewers. (Not mention people with fabric addictions and hexagon enthusiasts. Kindred spirits.) I even completed a quilt top that has been in my 'to-do' pile for WAY too long. I'm excited to get 'er finished!
Many thanks again to Amy of Amy's Creative Side and Erin of Two More Seconds for all of their hard work pulling this conference together. I can't even fathom how much work they did to pull it off. And they're going to do it again next year! Check out these fabulous quilts created in secret by some very generous attendees. I was so impressed.
Also, (are you still with me? Sorry, long post!) There was some fabulous loot! And GUESS WHAT?! As I was carrying my ironing board through the posh lobby again on the way out, Erin offered me another set of swag. And I want to share it with one of you who was not able to be there in person. Yes way.
Leave one comment here before Saturday October 15, midnight MST and I'll pick a winner.
Giveaway CLOSED. The winner is MEREDITH! Congratulations, Meredith!
Monday, October 10, 2011
I have a new baby quilt tutorial up at Moda Bake Shop.
After making the large squares-on-point quilt last winter, I decided it would be fun to make a baby-size version using 5" Charm squares. This one is for my brand-new baby niece!
Also many thanks to Sew Mama Sew for linking to my Easy-Stocking Tutorial yesterday as part of their Handmade Holidays series. There are some fun projects worth checking out. Because it's never too early to start that Christmas Gift prep, right? (eek.)
This past weekend was awesome. I came home yesterday to a busy family day, so today I need a nap. I'm excited to share some pictures and things that I learned from The Sewing Summit - as well as some loot! Stay tuned.
Saturday, October 8, 2011
Too bad I don't have some nice Muzak playing to enhance this experience for you.
Posted by amy smart at Saturday, October 08, 2011
Thursday, October 6, 2011
I saw this sign by Rosanna Geissler about a year ago and loved it.
Thanks to the magic of Pinterest, I found it again. Seems appropriate for this week.
And next . . . wow. Thank you so much for all of your nice comments on my blogiversary. You have made me dangerously close to getting a big, fat head. It is gratifying to know that this silly little blog is appreciated and even enjoyed. Thank you, thank you!
And now I am off to finish up preparations for The Sewing Summit which starts tomorrow. (!) Wow. Feeling excited and nervous all at the same time. It's been a crazy busy week around here and I haven't even started to pack. I've been working on my class presentation and I'm feeling muy anxious. I'm a little scared because, thanks to 4 pregnancies and the results thereof, my memory is shot and so I'm terrible at remembering names, details, anything really. Also I got a haircut last week that was not what I was expecting and I feel like that guy with the mushroom on his head from Mario Brothers. Combine that with a fact I have not yet shared on this blog: I got braces 3 months ago, and I'm feeling like I'm back in those awkward junior high years all over again. (Any other adult braces people out there? Please tell me I'll survive.)
But I'm so excited to be with so many fun women who share the same interests as I do. I know that there are so many who would love to come and can't because of distance, cost, etc. I got lucky that it happens to be only 40 min away from my house. If you can't make it this year, I totally suggest looking for a local guild or group at a local quilt shop. Women who sew are so much fun - even when they're complete strangers. (This is what I keep telling myself this week!) It is so worth having an occasional sewing-fest wherever you are. And then one day, we'll all sit and sew together at that great Sewing Summit in the sky. ;)
Posted by amy smart at Thursday, October 06, 2011
Monday, October 3, 2011
First of all, thank you so much for visiting this corney blog about quilting. Thank you for the kind comments and encouragement that you leave. I will be honest - some days blogging stresses me out. I worry about getting my pictures to look the way I want them to in my mind, I often kick myself for writing blog posts late at night when my brain has already shut off for the day and then worry that what I wrote sounded whiney or incoherent, and I'm often plagued by that nasty, un-healthy 'comparison/inadequacy' menace to all bloggers. Throw in the guilt I often feel about not always having the time I'd like to respond to every comment or meet everyone's requests (I'm a chronic "pleaser" so this can get rough), not to mention the guilt and worrying whether my time at the computer is the best use of my time. :)
BUT I'm so grateful for the nice feedback you give me regarding my hobby, for supporting my little etsy shop, and for the fun opportunities that have come since starting this blog. By far my favorite part of this adventure has been the great people I've met (some times in real life and sometimes in cyberspace) since jumping into the blogosphere. That is by far the funnest part - you awesome people!
Amanda Murphy and Robert Kaufman fabrics I have 2 Ten-Square (42 10" squares) collections and 2 Roll-ups (42 2.5" strips) of Amanda's newest collection, Veranda to share. I'll be giving away one set of both and one of each. (see top photo.)
And I wanted to give away something totally "Diary of a Quilter." So I've got a little bundle put together of an I-spy charm-pack, some American Jane pennant triangles and a few goodies I collected at Market last spring. This means we'll have 4 winners! First winner gets first pick of the prizes, and so on.
Thanks again for being my "peeps" in blogland! Mwah!
GIVEAWAY CLOSED. Winners are: Amy, luckymom, WandaFish, and Funky Kim. Congratulations ladies! I'll be contacting you!