Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Quilts for Boston Quilt Blocks

Over the weekend I managed to make this block for the Quilts for Boston effort the Boston MQG is organizing. Blocks are to be 12.5" x whatever, so I made this block 12.5" x a lot longer. I totally forgot to grab the final measurements.

While working on another project that I hope to reveal soon, I made this block as a leader and ender project. This one finishes at 12.5" x 12.5" and uses a whole bunch of 2.5" squares that I had just lying around.

A huge thank you to everyone who has already made and contributed blocks. We have been overwhelmed with the outpouring of support and love. I've taken the lead on the sponsorship/donation component of this effort and personally, I have been blown away by the generosity of so many vendors and quilt shops.

Quilts for Boston

Fresh Poppy Design

Monday, April 29, 2013

To Boston with Love

Over the weekend I took some time to make a flag for the "To Boston with Love" effort put on by the Vancouver MQG.

I kept seeing all of these awesome "B" blocks pop up in the Flickr group, representing Boston and the Red Sox, so I knew I needed to make sure my beloved Patriots were represented. The logo is raw edge appliqu├ęd down to the gray background. While it's hard to tell in this picture, I took a little liberty with the colors of the logo to go more with the color scheme the VMQG provided. The red is actually a bit more coral and the blue is a bit lighter than the picture implies.

For those looking to make a flag for this wonderful effort you can read more about here

Friday, April 26, 2013

Pinwheel Party

I can officially call this quilt - Pinwheel Delight - finished! It was my goal to finish this one as part of A Lovely Year of Finishes, and I'm happy to report that my goal was met.

This isn't my usual color pallet - especially the mustard yellow. I am in love with this color pallet and might just need to make another one of these for myself. Or make another quilt in these same colors.

This quilt will be shipped off to my partner in the Modern She Made Swap this weekend. I'll be sad to see it go, but know it will be going to a good home. I've been a part of this swap since round one and have been impressed with the items created by the folks participating. There's always a catch - some element we need to incorporate into our items. This round we needed to include a star somewhere in our item.

I designed this block a while ago, so when the theme of stars was announced, I knew I wanted to make this quilt. I really love all of the secondary designs that are formed when you put multiple blocks together.

Overall, I'm really happy with how this turned out. All of the fabrics were from my stash but include: Kona Cotton, Quilters Linen, Oval Elements and Curious Nature.

I kept the quilting quite simple given the complexity of the front. Because so many pieces meet in one place at times, sewing over those areas would likely have resulted in a broken needle. You can really see the quilting on the back.

I created a pattern for this quilt with a 6" finished block like I used here in this quilt or a 12" finished block if you want to make something a bit bigger. You can find my pattern and others here:
Quilt Stats:
Pinwheel Party by Jen Sorenson of A Quilting Jewel
Finished Size: 18" x 18"
Fabric: Kona Cotton, Oval Elements, Quilters Linen, Curious Nature
Batting: Warm and Natural
Thread: Aurifil 50wt 2610

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

WIP Wednesday: MSMS Round 3 Progress

The shipping deadline for the Modern She Made Swap is fast approaching, and I'm rushing to finish my mini quilt for it.

I designed a paper pieced pattern a while ago, and when the theme of the swap was announced - stars - I decided to use this pattern for my project. I made 36 three inch blocks (above) which were turned into nine six inch blocks, below.

I finished piecing the top and quilting this mini quilt this week, I just need to make the binding. I'm leaning towards the blue for the binding, but I'm waiting to see what my partner prefers before settling on one. For the quilting, I just did three diagonal lines together around the yellow squares. It's a little wrinkled below because I haven't ironed it after having the quilt all bunched up while quilting it, but you get the idea.

I'm really liking how this is coming out and I might just have to make another for myself. Can you see the stars that emerge as a secondary pattern when you put multiple blocks together?

You can find the pattern in my Craftsy and Etsy shops.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Quilts for Boston

Quilts for Boston

As I mentioned yesterday, the Boston MQG has decided to do something for our community given the recent events surrounding the Boston Marathon bombing. The modern quilting community really stepped it up leading up to QuiltCon, and we are reaching out to the quilting community once again to help those affected by these tragic events.

We are asking folks to make quilt blocks in blue, yellow, gray and white - the colors of the Boston Marathon and The One Fund. Your blocks, like those made for QuiltCon, should be at least 12.5" wide by however long you decide. Below is a sample color pallet pulled by the talented Natalie of Greenleaf Goods. For the full details, please check out the Boston MQG blog post.

Please mail your blocks to the Boston MQG by May 24th. In addition, we are also looking for coordinating fabric for the sashing, backing and binding.

Blocks can be mailed to:
Quilts for Boston
P. O. Box 79225
Belmont, MA 02479

To help inspire you, here are some pictures of the many wonderful quilts created at QuiltCon using 12.5" quilt blocks.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Love from Boston

Many of you may have already seen the amazing outpouring of support from our friends in the Vancouver MQG: To Boston With Love. If you haven't read about this effort organized by the VMQG, please read more about it here.

Throughout this whole ordeal, we've seen images of love, courage and support. It's these images that we need to hold onto and remember years from now. It's the playing of Sweet Caroline at other MLB ballparks, even Yankee Stadium that need to be remembered. It's the pictures of those helping the injured without any thought of their own safety that should be remembered. It's the marathon runners finishing the race and continuing to run to donate blood that restore faith in humanity. It's the tributes pouring in from around the world, like at the London marathon, that show how truly amazing our society really is. And, it's efforts like those of the VMQG and other quilters that warm our hearts.

As a fellow member of the Boston MQG, I first and foremost want to say thank you to everyone who has shown their support and is taking the time to make flags. We met as a group over the weekend and talked about how amazing this gesture is and what it means to us. We're looking to do something ourselves as a guild, so stay tuned for more details.

Every one of us in the guild was affected one way or another. Many were on lockdown as the suspects were on the run. We knew people who were running or watching the marathon. So many of us went to school in the Boston area and frequented the areas where everything went down.

For me, I have watched that marathon at least half a dozen times in person. I've walked Boylston St. too many times to count. I went to college just outside the city and frequent it often. I was just there yesterday checking out my sister's new condo that she just purchased - not even 500 ft. from where the suspects lived. She's a teacher at the high school they went to, although she never actually taught them. Everyone I talk to has a similar story. This has hit incredibly close to home, which makes the outpouring love and support that much more meaningful and greatly appreciated.

Through all of this, I think we have shown the world how wonderful Boston is as a city. If you haven't visited our amazing city, I encourage you to come visit sometime. As you've seen, we're a very proud city filled with some amazing people.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

WIP Wednesday & A Somber Note

I swear, it is going to take me forever just to finish this quilt. I lamented on what fabric I would use for the binding, as I don't really have many of the colors of this quilt in my stash. Finally, I found a great piece of FMF that I deemed perfect for this quilt. This weekend, the first time I've had a free minute in a while, I managed to cut the binding and get it sewn onto the quilt. 

I still need to tack it down to the back, but it's one step closer to being done with the quilt. 

On a more somber note, I am heartbroken by the events that occurred at the Boston Marathon this week. As a life-long New Englander, I've gone into Boston too many times to count. I've been to numerous Boston Marathons as a spectator - three times going to the 11:00 Red Sox game and walking to the finish line of the Marathon at the end to cheer on the runners. I knew a number of people running or watching the Marathon, so needless to say, Monday afternoon was a very emotional time for almost everyone in the Boston area trying to figure out if their friends and loved ones were safe. My heart goes out to everyone affected by this cowardly attack - this hit so close to home for everyone in the area. If you are looking to help, there has been a fund set up, The One Fund where you can donate to help everyone affected by this tragedy. 

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, April 15, 2013

So this happened...

I spent Saturday at the New England Quilt Festival, formerly MQX. I forgot my camera, but I did post a couple of pics to Instagram of some of the quilts. The show features more traditional quilts, but with some phenomenal machine quilting that any quilter can admire. The vendors didn't have a ton of modern fabric, and I only came away with a couple of yards of fabric from Sew Fresh Fabric. 

I did come away with a new toy though... 

I had been thinking about buying a long arm for a little while now, and after test driving a bunch of brands, I narrowed my search down to Gammill and Handi Quilter. I spent quite a bit of time at both booths at the show, test driving the machines again and talking to the folks in the booth about the machines. 

I really liked both of them and probably would have been happy with either, but ended up going with Handi Quilter for several reasons. First, they had a REALLY good deal going on. Second, the rep and repair folks I would be working with were out of a shop I'm familiar with and have a good reputation for machine repair. Third, the Avante had a more flexible table. With Gammill, I could only set up the table to one size and that would be it forever. With HQ, I could set the table up at 4', 6' or 10' and can buy additional 2' sections if I needed it. 

So, I have to wait for this to ship to the store and for them to set it up, so I likely won't be able to play with it for a few weeks. So expect to see me practicing on a bunch of panels and the like. I have a bunch of old quilt tops that have yet to be quilted that I'm sure I'll practice on as well. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Secret Projects

I've been pretty quiet on the blogging front lately, but that's because I have a couple of secret projects in the works that I can't reveal just yet.

One includes using this stack of fabrics:

And the other project uses these yummy solids:

Oh, and I'm working on my Modern She Made swap item using these pretty fabrics (with the gray as the background, not the white):

Hopefully I'll have some pretty quilts/projects to share with you soon, but for now, you're stuck looking at some pretty fabrics. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

WIP Wednesday: Mod Hex 2 Quilted

This week I finished the final stitch in my Mod Hex 2 quilt.

I still need to make and attach the binding, but overall, I'm really pleased with how it turned out.

Once again I did a concentric circle quilting design, which I really love.

I really want to use something from my stash for the binding, but I'm not sure I have anything that goes with this. These aren't the typical colors I work in - they're much more earthy than I'm used to.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

A Lovely Year of Finishes: April Goal

Well I failed miserably with my March goal of finishing my HST quilt.
I don't think I even touched this one in March, but that was probably because I traveled three times last month for both work and pleasure and was then named a finalist in the Sew-vivor competition, so my sewing plans were thrown for a loop.

This month promises to be just as busy with work, so who knows how much time I'll have to get stuff done. That being said, I'm going to set a goal for myself to finish my Modern She Made swap item by the end of the month. I think this is a realistic goal since I need to have my item finished by early May. Of course, I haven't even started, but I did pull this lovely stack of fabric.
I will be making a mini quilt using these colors.  I'm going with the gray as the background instead of the white. I might even make two, one for myself and one for my partner. The only requirement for this swap is that the item must include a star - totally up my alley.