Tuesday, July 28, 2015

A Few Zippered Pouches

I've been itching to sew lately, but with my travel schedule the way it has been, that hasn't been easy. In order to finally have a finish behind my belt, I decided to make a few wide open pouches (the medium size). I feel like I'm past the wedding stage of my live and have moved onto the baby stage where instead of going to weddings every month, I'm going to baby showers instead. So having a few of these on hand for gifts will be good, especially since I won't have the time to make quilts for all of them even though I'd like to.

I love making these pouches because it's a great way to dig into my stash and use up some of those novelty prints or fabrics I'm not quite sure what to do with anymore. Sometimes they just make the perfect pouch or bag.

Now to dig into a quilt or two! 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

A little Rusty

Last week I finally put a quilt on my Handi Quilter frame to start quilting. I've got a massive backlog of quilt tops that need quilting. Now that I've graduated (yay!), I can finally spend some free time quilting some of these quilts.
To start and get back into the swing of things, I loaded this mini quilt based on my Dazzling Diamonds pattern on the frame to practice with.

A while back, I snapped this photo above. One of the things I love about paper piecing is that I can sketch out a few quilting ideas on the back of the quilt before I take the paper off.

Unfortunately, I discovered that my quilting skills are a bit rusty. I started doing that back and forth in the white, but I hated how it was turing out. I just couldn't get it to look right, so I ripped it out, twice. I then turned to my trusted loop quilting and liked that. I'm done with the white and started to move onto the blue, but I'm having tension issues. I'll rewind a bobbin sometime this week and will give it another go since I think the bobbin I'm using wasn't wound tight enough. I've got more unpicking to do to take the blue out, but fortunately it's all loose on the bottom, so it should go quick before I dive back in. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Spin Art

About a year and a half ago I designed this fun paper pieced quilt that some of you might have seen hanging in the Michael Miller booth at QuiltCon and Quilt Market earlier this year. I was obsessed with the color coral when I made this quilt and just had to incorporate the two shades of coral and soft blue into a quilt. I might have to make another quilt using coral and mint sometime soon, my new favorite color to pair with coral. 

This quilt is made using Michael Miller Cotton Couture solids, my favorite solids to work with. I just find their hand-feel to be so soft and a pleasure to work with. This quilt uses the colors Clementine, Peach, Vanilla and Powder Blue. The clementine color has to be one of my favorites still that Michael Miller puts out. That's saying a lot given that my least favorite color of all time is orange (followed closely by brown). 

I quilted it on my HandiQuilter longer using SoFine #50 thread. It's been so long since I quilted it, but I'm pretty sure I used #402, a soft white. 

The free pattern for this quilt will be posted to the Michael Miller website soon. And of course, it's paper pieced for easy assembly! 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Retreat 2015

Last weekend I attended the annual Boston MQG retreat up in Kennebunkport, ME. This was my fourth time attending retreat and I can honestly say I always have an amazing time with the wonderful ladies of our guild. I think we have a pretty awesome guild with a wide range of skills and aesthetics, which is always so inspiring.

My first order of business was finishing up my Prism Dust quilt top. I arrived with 33 out of the 36 blocks made. I finished the three blocks and got to work on piecing the top together. Because these blocks were paper pieced, I kept the paper on, but it becomes very heavy as you're piecing along. The benefit of keeping the paper on while piecing everything together is that you have less distortion because of all the bias and accuracy is improved.

Piecing the top took a lot more time than I thought it would. All together, I've definitely spent over 100 hours piecing this top, which I began last summer. Given my schedule, I've spent a few hours here and there on this quilt when I had the time.

My other finish for the weekend was this zippered pouch for our zipit challenge. ZipIt kindly provided a 14" navy zipper for us all to make a zippered pouch. I've wanted to use these cotton and steel arrows for the bottom of a bag for some time. I thought this was the perfect opportunity. I freehanded a flying goose pattern on some paper to paper piece for the top part and offset it. I was really happy with the result and blown away that I actually won the challenge. I can honestly say I wasn't expecting to win because there were so many awesome pouches. We have some seriously talented quilters in our guild, so I was honored to win.

I did work on a few other projects here and there that I didn't finish. One was a leaders and enders project with equilateral triangles. One was a quilt that I can't speak of. Not because it's secret, but because the pattern was such a PITA and poorly written that I had to put it aside I was so frustrated. I think I'm going to figure out how to paper piece the pattern instead. I don't have pictures of those yet, but stay tuned!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Prism Dust - January BOM

The Boston Moder Quilt Guild is launching a Block of the Month this year. I volunteered to do the January block. Well, after a bad stomach bug that set me back over a week, 90"+ of snow and all that comes with life, I have posted the January block only a few days late.

You can download this block for free on Craftsy: http://www.craftsy.com/pattern/quilting/home-decor/prism-dust/131313

This is a pretty easy paper pieced block, with only four pieces to each section. The hardest part is matching the seams when piecing them together, which us quilters are used to for most other blocks out there.

I actually started making a quilt with this block a number of months ago and decided to post this pattern after enjoying the process of how this quilt is coming together. It's going to be a rainbow, with red in the upper right corner, radiating down to purple in the bottom left corner. The corners will be black and will radiate to a very light gray in the center.

Here's a preview of how it's coming along. I'm up to the green now, and it's getting to be too big for my design wall. I'm hoping I'll finish this quilt top sometime this year.