Friday, May 29, 2009

My Second First Quilt

I made this quilt about 5 years after I made my first quilt.  Why is this my second first quilt? Because this was the first time I made a quilt top using a sewing machine and it was the first quilt I had made in about 5+ years and really got me back into quilting.  (Bentley just had to be in the picture)
What got me back into quilting, back when I was either a junior or senior in high school, was attending the Lowell Quilt Festival.  I picked up a fat quarter packet and this pattern and decided to give it a go.  This time, I did have a rotary mat and cutter, but I didn't know to use the ruler to measure and instead I used the lines on the mat.  I had never read any how-to quilt books or taken a class.  Considering that, I think it came out OK.  I think the placement of the fabrics and blocks was what impressed me the most after taking this out of a bag after several years.  Not had, eh?
With all that being said, there are quite a few errors.  Seams don't match up well and it doesn't really lay flat.  Oh well.  It's still fun to look back at where I started and see how far I've come.  

Thursday, May 28, 2009

My first Quilt

So years ago, when I was in junior high, I began this quilt top.  I would carry it with me and do some of it as I would wait for my sister to be done with her gymnastics practice, which was 4-6 times a week (she was really good).  I'd carry around a bunch of fabric in a plastic storage container and sew it by hand.  I had no idea what I was doing back then, but it was the gateway to my quilting passion, even though it took a little while after making this one to get going again.

I used to cut out the fabric using some scissors and a piece of paper cut to a specific size as a template.  It was in no way accurate looking back at it now.  To make the triangles, I'd fold the square of fabric from corner to corner and cut down the diagonal.  Again, not really accurate.  

I had no idea about fabric choices, color values, etc.  Man if I knew then what I know now...  There's a reason it's still a quilt top and not a finished quilt.  I wouldn't know how I'd even quilt it now.    

In this one, I didn't cut of the selvage and you can still see the holes.

And pretty much no corners match up... 

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Boxes, Boxes, Boxes

The boxes are everywhere.  I think the only quilting stuff that I don't have packed are my cutting mats, rulers, and my actual machine.  I might bring my mats over to my parent's house soon because I don't want them to warp in the moving truck or car.  I had that happen once a while back and will never leave a mat in my car during the summer again.  

Bentley's enjoying exploring all of the boxes...
You can see some of my fabric packed into those containers.  There's more in the bags above and blow.  I wanted to pack my fabric into bags that would breathe better seeing as though it's probably going to be pretty hot when we move.
Man am I itching to quilt, but we have so much work to still do between packing and moving soon.  

Friday, May 22, 2009

New Mystery Quilt

So recently, I've been working on the McCall's Magazine Mystery Quilt.  My husband got me a quilting magazine for Christmas, but after 3 months of receiving nothing, he determined that it must not have gone through because he canceled his credit card and couldn't remember what magazine he originally ordered, so he went online and ordered this one for me.  A week later, I received a different magazine, so now I get two.  
Here are a few pics of the first 20 blocks.  There are 10 of the green, 4 of the red with the brighter blue, and 6 of the other red.  I didn't have enough of the blue speckled background, so I ended up improvising.  I'm going to use mostly Mark Lapinski's Calfilon line of fabric for this quilt.  The one with all three best depicts the color of the fabric.  I didn't notice all the stray thread until now, so please ignore those.  
I've got most of my quilting room packed up at this point, hopefully I'll be able to get a little in, but we'll see.  We're spending time with my family this weekend and the hubby and I are going on a date on Sunday!!!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I'm Back...

I just got back from a week down in Orlando for work. Our company's annual trade show was being held down there this week, so I've been MIA for the past week because of that and the previous week because I was so busy getting ready for it, since my group was exhibiting at the show and I was responsible for organizing our booth there.

I did have half a day of free time that allowed me to head over to the Magic Kingdom around 1pm last Saturday. Some of my friends thought I was crazy for going by myself, but I didn't care. It was that or sit around in the hotel room. Hmm... I think I'll do something. Yup, I wasn't about to sit around and watch TV.

I had a fun time. Magic Kingdom is probably one of my favorite parks ever. The magic of being there, seeing the sparkle in all the kids eyes, being in such a happy place, is just wonderful and so enjoyable.

I arrived just in time for their afternoon parade as I was walking down Main Street.
I was surprised at how short the lines were. The longest wait was for my favorite ride, Splash Mountain, for 50 minutes, but I grabbed a Fast Pass and returned an hour later and walked right on. Besides that, the longest wait for some of the rides was only 20 minutes, and even then, there were many rides that I was able to practically just walk right onto.
I spent the day enjoying all the rides and shows and left after the Spectro Magic parade, which was pretty fun to watch. Hopefully I'll be able to do a little bit of quilting soon now that this major trade show is over, although we are really starting to pack up our place at full speed right now, so I'm probably going to have to pack up a lot of my stuff soon. I've already packed up some of it, but I'm probably going to need to pack up the rest of it fairly soon, since we close on the house hopefully next Friday, although I wouldn't be surprised it if got pushed back to the following week.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Adventures on the Quilting Frame

Yesterday, I went over to KK's to play with her new toy, a quilting frame that fits her Bernina.  She finally got it all set up and we decided to try it out.  Both of us have used a long arm before, so it wasn't that difficult to learn.  We both picked it up pretty easily.  To begin, we tried my Happy Hour quilt since it was the smallest quilt top that either of us had ready to go.  

Here it is on the frame partially quilted. 
Here's the whole thing finished and off the frame:
And finally, here's a closer picture of the quilting.  I stuck to a simple meandering since it's a stitch that I'm comfortable with, having done it several times before.  I originally wanted to do an all-over pantograph, but it just seemed easier to do a meandering the first time around on this frame.  

We both have a bunch of unfinished quilt tops, so hopefully we'll be able to make a dent in our piles.  One down, probably close to a dozen to go. ;0)

Friday, May 1, 2009

Finished Bento Box Top

I finally finished putting the borders on my Bento Box quilt.  Life's been crazy the past two weeks trying to get everything in motion with the house.  We signed the P&S this week, so things are finally moving along.  

Here are some pics of the final top.  I love how everything came together. The border has the exact same lime green as in the body of the quilt.  
I'm off to KK's tomorrow to play with her new toy... a quilting frame.  I'm hoping to quilt either my jelly roll braid quilt or my happy hour quilt.  We'll see how much time we have.  I'm also bringing a few projects with me in case KK has a quilt on the frame, that way I can do some quilting at the same time.