Saturday, December 13, 2014

15 Quilty Resolutions for 2015

I really don't have 15, but I certainly need to make resolutions.  Especially after today.
Here goes!

1.  Focus on my projects.  I've always been Type A, and it is hard for me to have only one project going.  I think that you can have too many projects, and not give enough attention to each one.  

2.  Clean up!  No, really.  First of all, at the beginning of the year I need to clean up my big, wonderful studio, and get it organized.  Then I need to keep it organized.  It's easier said than done but I know it will make me more creative!!

Those two resolutions were kind of boring and basic.  I have more!

3.  Keep on trying projects that I think are difficult.  For instance:

Paper piecing.  I had to make SIX of these blocks to get four geese sets that flew in the same direction.  But I did it!

Or maybe this:

Yes, Shards!  To me, this kind of piecing is not intuitive at all.  However, I wish, I really do wish, that you could see in person what I see close up!  Somehow the marbled background fabric picks up the strips of color, and as I stitch my very close quiilting, I see that over and over.  I am about 3/4 done with that stitching, and it has been a joy!

My NQB Bee keeps me busy with blocks which are also new to me, and make me think:

It's like vegetables--if I don't try them, how will I know if I like them or not?

4.  Finish the UFO's.  

Everyone has UFO's.  Why?  Most of mine are things that I have allowed myself to put away so that I can work on projects I like better.  Some of my UFO's are very early quilt tops, made when I had no idea what I was doing.  There isn't much of myself in those tops, and so I lost interest.  

5.  Learn new things, go to classes, enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!!!!

And to me, this is what sewing, quilting and embroidery is all about!

Linking up to  Yvonne at The Quilting Jetgirl!

Hugs and much warmth and good wishes!


Thursday, December 4, 2014

Fabric Makes My Heart Sing! {Well, I AM A Quilter!}

A quick post to let you peek at a couple of things in the making.  First, a special delivery from Hawthorne Threads-- a sample of AMH Honor Roll!  I have a plan for this fabric but I cannot show you yet.   I love this fabric!  It feels like silk, too!

The other quilt-in-progress is one of two that I am making for Christmas gifts.  Sigh.  My daughters both requested playmats for my grandsons, who love to play lego-blocks on the floor.  I willingly agreed; however,  I managed to choose a pattern that was apparently untested, or possibly not tested enough.  I found that by staring at the pictures I got through the first top, and the second should go more quickly. 

The back of the playmats will be a grass green Kona, and will probably be the more "functional" side when in use.

Quilting the tops should be MUCH more fun than piecing them, which is not my usual frame of mind!

Christmas sewing continues, and I am so truly pleased that I can participate in creating gifts for loved ones. 

Linking up to NTT at My Quilt Infatuation!


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Crafty's Thanksgiving Sale!

Although I rarely do this, I am a Craftsy affiliate, so I want to point out the big sale they will be having this weekend.  I have several favorite on-line fabric retailers.  What Craftsy has is fabulous sales--not the biggest selections but great sale prices!  Check it out!!!  I've never been disappointed. 

Shop Craftsy's Pre-Black Friday Sale!
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This week, Craftsy is hosting an amazing sale! Here are the details:

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I've already checked out the fabric!!!
Hugs and most of all have a safe and Happy Thanksgiving!
As soon as I can, I have so much to show you!!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

If it Isn't Broke, Break it!!! {Make it Work for You}

I brought home a sample zip up jersey from work.  It had an embroidered patch on it, kind of curled and ugly, but there was nothing wrong with the jersey.  It was a freebie.

After some thought, I decided to cut out the ugly patch.  Now I had a hole.  With a iron and some samples of stabilizer, I very carefully patched the hole, front and back.  My focus was to maintain the shape of the fabric.

You can see the size of the hole and also the patch.  About 2 inches by 3 inches-- a little larger maybe.

I hooped a tearaway stabilizer, sprayed it with a very happy amount of temporary adhesive, then smoothed the jersey in place over the hoop.

Now I was ready to stitch.  That was the easy part.  Finding the right design.  Hard.

The design needed to be fairly dense to cover the patch entirely, and not to leave any kind of indentation where there was no fabric underneath.  I didn't want another "bulletproof" design, but I did want good coverage.

I found this red shoe design in my files.  I do love a good pair of red shoes, don't you??  It completely fit the bill.  I covered the fabric with a topper to keep the stitches  orderly, and off I went.  It worked out so well!  I will absolutely try this switch-out in the future, probably on thrift store finds.

And we are done!!!  A Christmas design would have been great here, also!

Happy Thanksgiving to you all, if my posting lacks in the next week!!!

Linking up to Show off Saturday at She Can Sew!!!

Hugs, Debbie

Monday, November 17, 2014

Shards, a Quilting WIP

I appreciate all the advice given from my last post on Shards.  It is wonderful to be part of a quilting community!

I  auditioned  two different threads, one King Tut thread, 40 weight, in a beautiful variagated tan/neutral combination.  And the other, an aurifil, 50 weight.  While both threads were pretty, pretty great, really, I decided to go with the thinner aurifil that would not sit so much on top of the fabric.

Then to sewing!  The little straight-line sewing monster in me simply took off, and sewed line after line.  I didn't have to sew straight lines, I made SURE I didn't sew straight lines!

Stitching around the colored shards not only let them pop visually (thanks, Yvonne!), but they also popped in a tactile way.  Even though this is a small work, the quilting will take a little while.  I cannot imagine doing this over an entire quilt--and yet I know I'll try it at some point!

The stitching does let the marble print of the fabric show through, and the feel of the areas already stitched is fabulous!  So much texture!

A lot more left to do--will keep you posted!


Thursday, November 13, 2014

Shards {Not Quite a Finished Project}

It felt SO GOOD to sit down at the machine and work on a real bona fide project!  Shards is ready to quilt!

I plan to drop by my quilting shop tomorrow after work to pick up some new thread.  What I have in mind is dense, probably matchstick quilting.  Although I love what I have done here, it is plain.  Just plain!  I have done quite a bit of dense quilting, but never matchstick, and I think it might work!  

Colorwise, I'd like to find a  variegated  thread with all of these brights in it, but not too shiny bright!  I know that made sense.  If you would like to make any color suggestions on the thread, have at it!  

Shards, the wallhanging, should end up around 24 inches square.  It was quite difficult for me to make the individual blocks, as nothing was intuitive, nothing really worked together for me, and I felt that I was always thinking backwards!  Just as when I made my flying geese circle!  However, it wasn't as if I was making an entire quilt, and the exercise was good for me.

I also struggled with the decision of overall shape.  In the end, I decided to keep a square shape, mirroring the individual blocks, and I am very happy with that choice.  

This piece will be fun to quilt!  I have a lot of pressure to get going, as Christmas gifts are waiting!

Linking up to Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation!!!


Thursday, November 6, 2014

Tiny Finishes

Life keeps on happening to me!  I went an entire week without more than a few moments at my machine.  With some stolen moments, I managed to get some in-the-hoop work done, and turned out some tiny little gifty bags.

I love these bags for several reasons.  As I use pieces of fabric, the leftovers keep on shrinking in size, and eventually are just small squares (or less!).  One bag takes only 4 squares that measure 4.5 inches each in size.  They are fully lined, and the contrasting zippers all come from zipit, on Etsy.  

Each bag measures 3.5 inches long by 2.75 inches wide.  Perfect for holding a USB drive, lipstick, possibly a pacifier  (note the blue bears!).  

A little bit of Tula

At any rate, these are just fun to make, provide instant gratification, and seem to be well received!

I am also reviving Shards, as a wall hanging.  I had to push it aside for a little, but kept thinking about it, and then got excited when the idea of matchstick quilting came to me.  I need to think that through a little more, but it is very appealing so far!

Not the best picture of poor Shards.  It will get better!

Linking up to Finish it up Friday!  And truly happy to be doing so!