Saturday, December 25, 2010

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

NEMQG - Holiday Mini Quilt Challenge

Last weekend the NEMQG held a holiday mini quilt challenge with our pincushion swap.  I decided to make a small quilt using needle turn applique that we learned in our last meeting.  I knew that I was going to be busy traveling for work, so I saw that as the perfect time to work on a needle turn applique quilt. 

I designed the quilt myself after sketching up a few different designs and settled on a gingerbread house and a Christmas tree. 
I made it using the scraps that I had from the Fat Quarter Shop's Designer Mystery BOM except for the brown house.

Here are a few close-ups.
I added some crystals to the Christmas tree to look like ornaments.

Here's the house.  The windows and door knob are made of buttons. 

Here's the back of the quilt where you can see some of the quilting that I did. 
I was running short on time for the binding, so I ended up machine stitching it down using some metalic thread. 

Now for the competition.  There ended up being four quilts total entered into the challenge.
After seeing all of the quilts up there, I knew I had no shot of winning.  I mean, come on, look at some of those.  They're fantastic.  Everyone at the meeting was given a piece of paper to vote on their favorite quilt.  After the tally, quilts 3 and 4 (from left to right) were tied for third place and quilts 1 and 2 were tied for first.  I have to admit, I was a bit shocked when I learned I was tied for first.

Because there was only one winning prize, we had to have another vote off between quilts 1 and 2.

After the second tally, again quilts 1 and 2 were tied.  (I was shocked that I was still in it, much less tied for that awesome quilt on the left.)  Then, we realized that we were missing one vote, the deciding vote.  After all of the votes were recounted and the tally was final, MY quilt was dubbed the winner!!! Holy cow!!!  I seriously never expected to be the winner after seeing all of the cool quilts. 

So now this cute quilt is hanging in the hallway off our kitchen to our master bedroom. 

Monday, December 13, 2010

NEMQG Pincushion Swap

On Saturday, at the NEMQG, we had a pincushion swap.  It was a "bring a pincushion, get a pincushion" swap. 

Here's the pincushion that I made for the swap.
I made it using the leftover scraps from the Carol Doak Radiant Star BOM.  All of the pieces that I had leftover from trimming the paper pieced blocks became this pincushion.  I filled it with crushed walnuts.  I loved it and didn't really want to give it away, but I did.

Here we are swapping pincushions.
And this is the pincushion that I received.  Isn't it cute?
And here are all of the pincushions.  I wish I could have taken them all back with me, but if I did that I'm guessing I wouldn't be welcome back to the group.  So, I resisted.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Revisiting 2010 Goals

At the beginning of the year I developed some goals for myself for the 2010 quilting year.  I thought that this would be a good time to revisit them and see how I did throughout the year.

Goal 1 - Reduce the number of unfinished quilt tops needing to be quilted (9 at the beginning of 2010)
I reduced that number by two.  I now have 7 quilt tops that need quilting.  Goal = Acomplished!!!  (I have to say, before I went and counted, I was sure I was going to have more than 9.)

Goal 2 - Buy less fabric and use from my stash.
Hahahaha.  This is a funny one.  Yeah, about that.  I never actually took inventory of how much fabric I had at the beginning of the year, but I would be willing to bet my Bernina that I have more fabric now than I did on January 1, 2010.  That's saying a lot.  I don't think I ever thought I was going to have less fabric, but I wanted to consciously use some of the fabric that I already have.

Goal 3 - Reduce my UFOs (I had 9 quilts in progress at the beginning of 2010)
I now have 7 quilts in progress (from the cutting stage all the way to the binding stage).  Once again, I'm shocked that this went down.  If I had to guess, I would have also thought that I had more in progress.  Goal = Acomplished

Goal 4 - Continue Blogging.

All in all, I think I did a pretty good job of maintaining my goals.  I managed to finish 12 projects this year, 5 of those were quilts.  I'll showcase my finishes for 2010 after the holidays and when I can share more about some of them.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Turning 26

Yesterday I celebrated my 26th birthday.  Saturday my family and I went to dinner at our local Melting Pot to celebrate.
See that package in front of me?  Can you guess what that is?  I'll give you a hint... it's quilting related. 

Any ideas???

How about now?

It's an Accuquilt Go!!! Did you guess right?  (excuse the weird face in the picture)

So guess what I did yesterday?  I had to play around a little bit.
I also worked on finishing up my mini holiday quilt for our NEMQG challenge for our December meeting this coming weekend.  I'll share that next week since we're having an unnamed competition. 

I haven't had that much to share lately as I had some family in town for Thanksgiving and then I was traveling for work.  The few things that I have been working on are Christmas presents for folks who follow this blog, so I can't share those either.  Hopefully after the holidays I'll have more to share. 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Designer Mystery BOM - Block Six

Last weekend I finished block six of the FQS Designer Mystery BOM.  I love this block.  It's one of my favorites.
Here are the first six blocks.  I can't believe we're half way through already.
This is going to be such a great quilt.  I love it more and more as each block is made and added.  I can't wait for the next one (as always).

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Figgy Pudding - Finally Finished

So I finally got the binding finished on my figgy pudding disappearing nine patch quilt.  It's now hanging up in my kitchen just in time for the holidays.  YAYAYAYAYAY!!!!  (I'm a bit excited about finishing this one given my previous frustrations with the quilting.)
I used the green grunge fabric from the same line for the binding.

It's a great feeling to have a quilt finished.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

NEMQG November Meeting

Yesterday was the November meeting of the NEMQG and the first one I was able to attend in person.  It was great to be able to meet everyone that I've been talking to online and those that have been participating in the bee.

In this meeting we learned needle turn applique.  I was excited to learn this because I've always wanted to make an Aunt Millie's Garden quilt.  Joanna, the applique queen, taught this lesson using her tree tutorial.  Here's my tree in progress.
I also received my blocks back from my month in the bee.  Here are the blocks (one is missing).
I had asked for a star block and these are everyone's interpretation.  Now to think of how I'm going to put it together.  Hmm...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Quilters Gathering II - The Quilts and a Rant

On Sunday we went back to A Quilters Gathering to take another "class" (more on that later) and see the quilts on display.  I'm always inspired by the quilts I see in these shows.  After viewing some of the quilts though, I felt more motivated to enter some of my quilts in upcoming shows.  I'm thinking of entering my fire and ice quilt in a few shows once I get it back from the quilter.

Without further adieu, the quilts:

No my rant.  KK, Lynn, and myself signed up for a half day class on Sunday to make a poppy wall hanging. Prior to the class we were sent the supply list by the organizers of the show and we all went out and bought everything necessary.  In total, I probably spent over $100 in supplies for this class.  When we showed up, the teacher, Lenore Crawford, was wondering why everyone in the class had all of these supplies when this was just a lecture.  WHAT?!?  Um, we had all of our supplies because we were told that this was a class and we were sent a supply list to have for the class.  She then went on to blame the show for not communicating with us properly.  Then, she questioned everyone in the class as to whether or not we really expected to work on a project in a half day class and that it wasn't possible.  I then said that in our half day class yesterday we were able to finish our project from start to finish.  With a snarky remark, she then responded that people in her full day class hadn't even finished their quilt and she questioned whether or not we would be able to create a decent quilt in just 3 hours.  Needless to say, everyone was very put off with her attitude towards everyone and the clear lack of communication between everyone, between Lenore and the festival organizers, and the organizers to the participants.  On top of that, Lenore seemed very off her game throughout the lecture since this was her 4th or 5th day teaching in a row.  I can understand if you're tired, but don't commit to teach a class if you aren't able to handle it.  Basically, I was very disappointed with this "class."  I spent all of that money to register for the class and buy all of the "required" supplies only to listen to the teacher's history and how she does her technique without even getting to try our hand at it and ask questions in person. 

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Quilters Gathering - A Weekend of Fun

Last weekend was the A Quilters Gathering quilt festival up in Nashua, NH.  This was my first time attending this festival and I was impressed.  I took two classes with KK and Lynn, each half day classes on Saturday and Sunday morning.  We shopped a bit and saw all of the beautiful quilts.

Our first class on Saturday was with Kathy Kansier, Christmas in Hawaii.  KK ended up having to miss this class, but Lynn and I were still able to make it and had a great time. 

The class started with learning a bit about Hawaiian style quilts.  Kathy showed one of her quilts that she just finished and needs to have sent to the quilter.
Then, probably the most interesting and useful skill that we learned was how to design our own Hawaiian style block.  I really enjoyed learning how to design my own because it allows us the ability to do more of these blocks moving forward without being constrained to a particular pattern.  As you can see in the quilt above, Kathy made the blocks above for a particular person and each one tells a story such as the waving hands and the houses. 

We folded our freezer paper and designed our block using a pencil.  I decided to go with a flower and some leaves.  The pattern that I designed is above.  I then ironed the paper to the back of the wonder under on a piece of batik and then traced it.
Here's Lynn ironing on her adorable house and sailboat pattern onto her wonder under.  After ironing and tracing, we cut out our pattern and ironed it onto our white or black Kona backing and begin to sew around the pattern.

Here I am beginning to sew around my flower.  As you can see, I decided not to cut out the center of the flower.  I wanted to limit the complexity for this first piece and avoid any inner pieces. 
Here's my finished piece all sewn down. Isn't it cute?  I love that i was able to finish this in a three hour class. 
And here's what Lynn's block looks like.  She hasn't finished sewing around all of the pattern yet, but isn't it fun and cute?  She's making a sampler quilt with all types of house blocks.

More on the rest of the weekend in another post...

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Designer Mystery BOM - Block Five

After a slight mishap with the mail I finally received the fifth block in the mail and was able to make it last weekend.

While I like this block, I think it doesn't quite fit in with the others.  I forgot to take a picture of all of them but will next time.  At this point, I think it's my least favorite.  I'm trying to think of a way to spice it up.  Hmm...

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Fiesta! Revisited

I began to re-visit the Fiesta! quilt that I started a while back.  There are six different types of blocks in this quilt.  I finished making all eight of the "block 3's."

And here are all 8 of the "block 3's."

They won't be laid out in the circular design shown above but I thought it was a cute way to show all of them.  I began cutting the fabric for some of the other blocks and hope to continue progressing on this quilt.

Pattern: Fiesta! by Possibilities

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival

It's time for another blogger quilt festival courtesy of Amy. This time around I thought I'd showcase my newly finished Wonderland quilt.  I just finished putting the binding on last week so this is the first time I've show this quilt finished.

This quilt started as a get together with my aunt and friend Lynn.

As I continued making this quilt and just wasn't in love with it.  I continued to put it aside because I just couldn't get motivated. Finally, I finished all of the rectangles and arranged them on my design wall.

It spent about 3 weeks on my design wall where I moved things around to get an arrangement that I was happy with and I pieced it together.
At this point I still didn't love the quilt until it is that I quilted it using some straight line quilting.  It's the quilting that really turned things around for me on how i felt about this quilt.  After quilting it I loved it.

I then found some of the red dot fabric online to bind the quilt.
And now I have a finished quilt.  After making this quilt I really learned to not judge a quilt until after it's quilted.  It really changed things for me.