Friday, August 26, 2011

Helper Dogs

Here is Crosby helping me out by keeping me entertained with his snoring:

And here is Ruby Tuesday fed up with all the sewing and sneaking a lie down in our bedroom after making a proper puppy nest with the covers:

Oh the cuteness factor is high with these 2 today - it will be hard to go back to work Monday after 2 weeks of crafting and relaxing with them.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Nifty Napkins in an Hour

I decided I needed a project to bust through some of my stash and get the creative juices flowing trying to do some fabric match ups. The result is a new pack of napkins in browns, greens, blues, and yellow. I'm pretty happy with them even though I cheated slightly and put a few from 1 fabric line together (Geo Grand by Daisy Janie). The blue/green floral fabric is Zinnia Path by Paula Prass, and I'm not sure what the other fabric line is. UPDATE: mystery solved the fabric line is Free to Grown by Nancy Mims. They were part of a birthday present last year, and I can't seem to find any selvedges anywhere. Next step is getting back to little sister's quilt back, and finally deciding on a pattern for middle sister's baby quilt. Busy busy.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Little Sister Wonky Log Cabin Quilt

This quilt is a WIP for over a year that now has a deadline. My little sister is moving into her first apartment and I want to get this finished up for her move in October. It is quarter wonky log cabin blocks made from all of my scraps and a few fat quarters in my stash with a purple solid background fabric. Windy day = blurry photos!

The top has been done for months, and now I'm tackling the back. My goal is to make a quilt that can be reversible. That way if little sis gets bored with the front she can flip it & vice versa. I've already got the quilting pattern idea in my head - just need to finish the back and find someone to quilt it for me since this is too big & I'm not experienced enough to machine quilt it myself.

So far I have a few blocks done for the back and have pulled some more scraps for the back. I have a bit of purple left and will be using some more bright pink (as in the border of the top middle block on the front) to get it all together. I'm running out of time, but hopefully I can get this completed by September, buy the batting and find a long arm quilter to complete it. Then the dreaded binding phase (yuck!) and it is all ready. Fingers crossed!

Baby Quilt Bonanza - Part 2

The quilt is complete and off to Australia. The machine sewn binding worked decently, though I will need more practice as I still cannot sew in a straight line. All in all I am pretty happy with the end result and thrilled that I finished it in time to send it with my father-in-law instead of having to pay to ship it.
Here are some shots of the process I wasn't able to load before:

And here is the finished product:

Sorry the colours are a bit off from the afternoon sun coming in that day.
Here are some shots of the binding grey thread on front & blue on the back:

So, onto the next baby quilt. Luckily I have a longer time frame for this one so I'm going to tackle a tougher pattern I think. I'll try to post progress photos as I go.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Baby Quilt Bonanza - Part 1

After a marathon of sewing the quilt for my sister in-law is finished. I've quilted it, did the binding, and washed it to make sure there are no dyes left in it, or loose threads. Phew.

I must say that my husband was a trooper for taking care of the pets, and feeding me on Friday while I sewed all day - last day of vacation. So now the package is ready to be delivered to Melbourne in the coming weeks when my father-in-law goes back home after a whirlwind visit.

The front pre-binding. I used this pattern because I think it looks like stacks of books, and my brother and sister in-law have so many books at their house, or did when I visited in 2009. Perhaps some have gone to make room for the upcoming bubs, who knows. I think I'm going to call it 'Red Riding Hood' as that was my inspiration for the colours, and say 'to the bookworm to be' since I don't know what her name will be.

For the back I used selvedge to selvedge strips of the fabrics from the front. I think that make it more useful as a baby quilt to be totally reversible. I did straight-ish line quilting so it would look good on the top, but I don't think it looks too bad on the back. The one pre-planned aspect I did get right was to have these stripes facing the opposite to the 'books' on the front so there were seams lying on top of seams. For the spacing I just eyed the front of the quilt to try to make the lines look good against the 'books'. All in all I'm pretty happy with the results being this is my 2nd completed quilting project.

I will get some photos of the binding and the washed completed project up soon. I copied a technique I saw on an antique quilt in Perth where they had zigzag sewed the binding on. It looked so wonky & adorable I knew I had to try it. I won't lie - the binding did not go well as far as it being super equal all the way around. I cannot sew in a straight line to save my life. Hence all of the 'wonky' quilt patterns I like. I think more of the problem came from my squaring up not really being square, but who wants a cookie cutter quilt - right? This one has heaps of personality. Or so I keep telling myself.

Here is one of Crosby at the end of the day of sewing. One tired little guy.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Baby Quilt Beginnings

I got the fabric finally for the 2 baby quilts I am creating for the first babies of my sister and my sister-in-law. Exciting times as they are having the first sets of grandchildren on both sides. Craziness.
For my sister in-law in Australia:
She requested a red quilt, so hopefully she will like this combo of red, aqua, and grey. They are having a girl, and I think this is a good colour combo for the red room she will have. I'm going to make a pattern from Modern Quilting Bee Block Party. It will be the Uneven Coin block, but I'm going to call it a book block since my sister-in-law has a thing for books. Fingers crossed I can get it done in time to send it to Australia with my father-in-law to save on shipping!!

The second one will be for my middle sister. She is having a boy, so I've decided to bust out the brown Teeny Tiny Zoo I've been hoarding. I grabbed some solids from Perth on my road trip earlier today, and now I'm ready to go on it. Just need to decide on the pattern I want to do. Forgive the rubbish photo - need a new camera so I don't have to try to keep using Photobooth on the laptop. Not easy.

There is a brown, blue, green, orange and white solid to match all of the animals in the zoo fabric. My sister is doing a safari theme for the nursery so I think this is a good choice.

I will either be doing wonky log cabin blocks or rectangle blocks like on page 116 of the Winter 2010/2011 International Quilt Festival: Quilt Scene magazine. I've been waiting to try this pattern out, and I think I am always more successful at quilts that are irregular as I can never seem to cut a truly straight line. Just one of those things - I know my weakness.

Actually just looking at Moda Bakeshop I think I might have found something I like called Building Blocks. Love love love. I could alternate the teeny tiny zoo as a center & surrounding fabric. This could very well be the winner :) I might have to do them a bit wonky just to shake things up.
From Moda Bakeshop:

Will try to post updates as I get on with the quilts, but will be limited by the lack of a camera!