Tuesday, April 29, 2014

WIP: Hakuna Matata

Mostly for the last week my sewing machine has been sitting idle, and feeling quite lonely.  My motivation to sewing anything (my sewjo, as I've heard it called) is almost zero.  Ugh, I am in a sewing funk!  And why?  Because of these two trouble makers:

"Hakuna Matata" was stuck in my head almost continuously while making these guys.

The patterns are both from Fandom in Stitches and are made for a Disney-LOVING pay-it-forward gift.  The selection of Disney blocks on the site is so big I actually asked the pay-it-forward person what their favorite movie and/or characters were.  One of her many answers was The Lion King, and who doesn't love Timon and Pumbaa?!

But man, these paper pieced patterns were real hair-pullers.  I made Timon first, and thought I'd chosen the harder of the two to make first (though in retrospect he was quite straight forward).  Then I made Pumbaa--and it turned out I had many more issues with his pattern.  I accidentally sewed the wrong colored fabrics in several times, forgot an important piece in one of the eyes (had to start over completely for two of those mistakes, ugh), there are a few minor mistakes in the pattern, and then getting all the pieces to go together properly and everything line up nicely was impossible.  But he's done now, and the longer I leave him up on the design wall, the more he grows on me.

He's kind of charming now, though I do wish I'd chosen a slightly lighter brown.

I had been trying to finish ALL my pay it forwards (only 4 left!) this month, but as I keep choosing to make detailed, time consuming projects...the last 4 will have to be given out in May.  At least the end is in sight!  Note to self: stop signing for pay it forwards.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Butterfly Mini Quilt

Another secret mini quilt to show you finally!  This one was was made for my friend, Nicole at Snips Snippets.  She's also in the Birthday swap, and shares a fondness for greys and teal/aquas.  I fully intended to make her something from my collection of those colors, but then I bought a dresden ruler on a whim (I mean, I'd been eyeing it for a while, and finally it found it's way into my cart), and saw this butterfly block in her inspiration board and it was all over.  

I used entirely scraps on the front--just pulling out fabrics I thought looked pretty together for the butterfly, and the background is a patchwork of Kona Coal scraps (do notice how there is some variation in the background though--Kona dye lots can vary by quite a bit!).  The sunflower is made with Sunnyside scraps from another dresden I made that ended up too big, and too wonky.

When I made the flower (using 1.25" wedges), my 4 year old son told me several times "Not to forget the pollen", so with his inspiration I added the circular stitching to the center of the flower--technically it is the Seed of Life pattern, and it required quite a bit of practice in drawing, then marking and quilting.  And it's still wonky--but that's nature for ya.

I quilted in the ditch around the butterfly using Aurifil 50wt in #2530 (pink), #2545 (purple) and in a 28wt #1148 (light teal).  The flower is quilted using Aurifil 50wt in #1135 (yellow) and #2887 (olive green).  The background is quilted using 50wt #2605.  I free motion quilted the antenna using 12wt #4093 (teal) and 28wt #1148 (light teal).

The back is Bella Aqua.

 I love quilting in little bugs, and it was perfect for this quilt theme--there are six of them for her to find.







I bound it using Kona Charcoal.  It measures about 20" x 21".

 Also included in her birthday gift is this little bag I made from the quilting test quilt from this profanity quilt.

About 11"x 5".

 The quilting is Aurifil 12wt # 4093 (teal) and 28wt #1148 (light teal).  I seriously love these threads and use them whenever possible.

The other side.

There is a double layer of batting, and backing, and lining--so it is a well shaped little pouch! 

Color coordinated lining!

I've been saving the practice quilt just for her, and decided it would make a better bag.  I was kind of sad to see these gifts go, but I know they're in a well-loved home!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

AMH Feather mini quilt

I made this AMH feather mini as a pay it forward gift for Liz at Shush I'm Quilting.  She expressed such love for the teaser photos I put up on IG (I'm @quiltsnfeathers) that I decided to send it to her.

Measures about 9" x 18"

I quilted in the ditch around the feather and stem, then echo quilted it using Aurifil 12wt in #4093 (teal).  I used 50wt #2000 in the bobbin.  The background fabric is Kona Charcoal and the binding and feather stem are Kona Chestnut.  

The back is some scrap of a feathery batik I've long coveted.

Label from TagsToGo on etsy.

When she signed up for my pay it forward, she mentioned maybe something for her little Princess would be very much appreciated.  Especially if it was pink.  So I made a wide open zipper pouch using some scrap pack pinks I've been collecting.

Side A
Side B--love the girl wearing the glasses!

Inside strawberry sweetness.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Jessica's Sisterhood Quilt

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Quilts continues--this month I am adding to Jessica's (from Quilty Habit) quilt.  First it went to Ashley, she added the row of churn dash blocks:

I was really excited to work on another black-as-neutral quilt.  The last one was this prayer quilt.  The fabrics are so much prettier and brighter for this one--I love the contrast.

The first block I decided to make is this Radiant Splendor block.

I messed up making the flying geese right away (I made colored geese instead of black geese), and then saved the half square triangle trimmings--all the extras went to the "boneyard" on my design wall:

Photo courtesy of my 4 year old.

So my goal then became using the pieces from the boneyard wherever possible:

Layout from this blog.

And I also wanted to use some of the Echino Birds I ordered with a gift card I won during a Sew Mama Sew giveaway to Jones and Vandermeer:

I chose the fabric especially for adding a few birds to her quilt, so I was so thrilled with how well the colors worked out!

While debating what to do with all the boneyard pieces, I came across this tutorial on making a churn dash block with a tiny pinwheel in the center.  I started with 1.75" HST, and ended up with a 2" churn dash with an itty bitty (wonky) pinwheel in the center.  I then added more churn dashes to it to get this block:

I call it the "yo dawg, I heard you like churn dashes" block.
I used all but 5 of the boneyard flying geese, hurray!  Here's the whole quilt now, going to Laura next!

I really enjoyed working on this quilt--I think the birdy blocks are my favorite though!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

My quilt at a national show!

My Lone Star Reflections quilt was accepted into the MQX Quilt Festival in Manchester, New Hampshire!  The quilt show is April 10-12th--if you are going and see my quilt, I would love to get a picture of it hanging up!

You can see more photos of the finished quilt here and the process photos here (scroll down a bit).

Monday, April 7, 2014

Fishy Mini Quilt

I made this little quilt about a month ago, but forgot to blog about it in the secret-ness of it, and then the craziness that was March (mostly my daughter's birthday, then my husband's grandpa died, and a two weeks later his grandma on the other side passed).  Anyway, I joined an awesome Birthday Swap with some other bloggers, and this little quilt was made for Julie's birthday back in February.

The pattern is from More Quilts from the Quilt Maker's Gift--although if you make it, know there is a mistake and the Fish unit 2 reversed is not reversed and you have to use the back of that pattern to get the right piece!  

Julie mentioned not really liking batiks, but I couldn't get the purple-blue fabric I had out of my head--it just seemed so perfect for the watery areas!  Thankfully she liked the sneak peak pictures I posted on instagram (I'm @quiltsnfeathers).  I've wanted to make this quilt block for a while, and thought it'd be perfect for someone that enjoyed a lot of outdoorsy stuff. 

I quilted it using Aurifil 50wt in #5005 (blue), #2130 (orange), and #1135 (yellow).

Terrible picture, but you can really see the quilting on the fishies here.
 I sent it with some other little goodies and I am so happy to say that Julie loved this, batiks and all!  You can read about it and her other awesome birthday gifts here!

Label from TagsToGo on etsy.

Friday, April 4, 2014

D9P for Kenya Quilt finished!

You can read more about this quilt here.

Measures about 63"x 80" after being washed.

My friend Michelle pieced the quilt top, and I quilted it with a big, all over wavy pattern, loosely following this tutorial.  You can see the quilting a little better in this photo:

I quilted it using my walking foot mostly.  When there was a small island of non-quilted, I used my free motion foot to fill it in so I wouldn't have to rotate the quilt a million (more) times.

I used a Superior Threads in a medium blue.

Bound using some scraps that were already cut.

I love the texture after a wash!

The backing is not my favorite and was purchased out of desperation, haha.  

I had planned to get some wide backing for a fast, simple back.  I went to Hobby Lobby to get it, since it's closer than Joann's.  They have a selection of poly-cotton broad cloths, which I stared at for a long time trying to decide on a color.  Then, as I was reading a tag on one of the bolts I saw that the "broad" cloth was only 44" wide!  Why is it called broadcloth?!  Ugh, I was so annoyed.  But I had wasted so much time already, with both kids in tow and getting cranky, that I chose the first green-brown-blue fabric I found, hoping it would coordinate (it doesn't though, does it?  haha, oh well).

Lesson learned: Hobby Lobby doesn't carry true broadcloth!

Label on the back with a spare block.

I actually finished this on the 31st, right on schedule!  I wanted Michelle to see it first.  This quilt is now packed up, ready to be shipped to Kenya for the Lala Salama project--go check it out!

Posing with the cherry tree.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Hexagon Sewing Machine mini quilt

This little quilt was made as a pay it forward gift, and just today arrived in it's new home at Julie's house in New Zealand!

I made the 3/4" hexagons during a road trip back in December (I have a whole collection of hexagons made during road trips).  I had no plans for them until I remembered Julie saying one of her favorite colors was aqua.  I first played with random layout of the hexagons on the linen, but didn't like it.  Finally I came across this hexagon sewing machine and knew it would be perfect.

I machine appliqued the hexagons using Aurifil #1148, light teal in 28wt, and outlined the machine using Aurifil #4093, teal in 12wt.  I used Aurifil #2000 in 50wt to free motion quilt various patterns on the linen.  I also used it in the bobbin:

It was a fun little quilt (I think it measured 20" x 16" ish) to work on and really liked making a sewing machine that didn't require a bunch of paper piecing!  This last photo just shows off the texture of the quilting a little better:

So glad to finally be crossing off a pay it forward gift!  Hoping to get the rest of them finished this month!