Sunday, August 3, 2014

Birthday Quilt for My Dude

I've made quite a few quilts since I started quilting about 6 years ago. I've made quilts for some pretty special people, but I hadn't made one for the most special person in my life - my husband, aka my dude. What's up with that? He has actually mentioned on more than one occasion that he might be interested in designing a quilt for himself, so I guess I was waiting for that to happen. I finally decided to just start one myself.  I started it in time to give to him for Valentine's Day this year. But I started way too late, just like I always do. Then I messed up horribly on my quilting and had to set it aside for awhile while I decided what to do next.  I spent the next few months, off and on, unpicking row after row after row of stitching, all while trying to keep this a secret.  I thought I might finish it in time for Father's Day, but had another quilt that I needed to finish. Then I thought I might finish it for our 31st anniversary on July 2nd. Geez! Couldn't make that deadline either! I didn't think I'd ever finish it!!  Well, his birthday was on July 10th, and I finished it just in time ...... at 10 PM the night before his birthday.  I not only missed all these special occasions this year, but for the last several years.  My husband is my rock.  He should've received my very first quilt, and most definitely should've received a quilt before now. 

I knew I had to make the XO quilt using the Canoe Ridge Creations tutorial because Eric and I have been signing our texts and emails with an XO for years.  But the XO quilt is pretty small, and Eric is 6'2" and needs more than just a width-of-fabric quilt (42-44" for all you nonquilters reading this). So I used the XO quilt pattern and just added to it. 

And I also wanted to add a heart, and found this really cute one here

I didn't think I would ever be done with it.  I'll never ever quilt like this again. Just look at all that stitching - about 1/2" apart.  I must be insane. 

I remembered a post that I had seen about matched binding and just knew it would be perfect for this! If you haven't seen this, check it out at A Quilter's Table

I used Modern Solids by Jason Yenter for In the Beginning Fabrics.  I purchased these at, and even earned some reward points while shopping ;) 

I used Dogma Red Ikat Plaid for the back, which by the way hides all kinds of mistakes, just FYI :)  You're welcome. I got this at Winter Creek Cloth, too - even more reward points! Woo hoo! 

I finished it off with a label.  I used Amanda Jean's label tutorial.  Eric and I have this plan to grow old together, something we've always planned to do but this really impacted us when I was diagnosed with cancer in 2007.  It was our "plan A" and there wasn't a plan B.  

And of course it has to be tested by Giacomo, as always.  Check out that tongue! I think he approves. 

Eric absolutely loved his quilt.  It's the perfect size.  When he's in his recliner, it actually hangs down to the floor.  I just realized as I'm posting this at 10:15 PM that I don't have a pic of him with his quilt, so I'll do a follow-up post because he's sleeping right now and I don't think he'd be very happy if I woke him up for a pic. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Winter Creek Cloth's Blowout Sale Starts Today!

Remember when I recently reminded you to stay tuned for info on Winter Creek Cloth's big sale?  Well, here it is!  It starts Monday, May 26th, and goes through Friday!  Check out all the great deals! 

Winter Creek Cloth



Great prices on lots of new markdowns including a $5.00/yard in the SALE section
BlowOut Sale!



on all U.S. orders and $5 off all international orders



including charm packs, layer cakes, jelly rolls, fat quarter bundles, half yard bundles, yard bundles and quilt kits!



*****And don't forget to use the coupon code MAYSALE for an additional 10% off your order all week

Friday, May 23, 2014

I made a dress!

I actually made a flippin' dress!  Yes, you read that right.  Not a quilt.....but a dress!  If you're on Instagram, you may have seen #thestapledress by April Rhodes all over the place.  I'll admit, when I first saw it, I thought it was a bit loose for my style.  But the more versions that were posted, the more I liked it.  Some had posted that it ran a bit big, so they went down a size.  I hesitated doing that because I didn't want to mess up my beautiful fabric that I had purchased.  I started this dress almost 2 months ago!! Check out this fabric!  Awesome? Yes! I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it!  It's Bijoux Divine Gypsy Ivory by Bari J that I got from Winter Creek Cloth.  Serious love here, people! 
So, to be on the safe side, I started with an ugly dress with some fabric that I've had sitting around for almost 20 years. My husband may or may not have had some hang-around-the-house pants made out of this. Possibly my son, too.
It was too big through the neck.  I knew I could definitely go down a size on the bottom, but I wasn't so sure about the top.  So then I made another ugly one, but just the top this time. No one had pants out of this fabric. It's just super thin, and would probably fall apart after the first wash, so it was in my ugly pile. 
Perfect!  Now it was time to get out the pretty fabric!  
This dress even has French seams in the shoulders! Crazy! Way easier than they sound! 
I finally finished it on Mother's Day while my husband and son spoiled me rotten with a brunch of French toast, bacon, fresh fruit, and Mimosas! I asked my husband to take pics of me and the boy (Mother's Day tradition).....and then just me all by my pretty dress :)  

I used the elastic shirring in the waist on the ugly dress, but decided not to on the 2nd one, mostly because I just wanted to be done. And the belt works just fine without the elastic.  I put pockets on this one, but I think I might leave them off with the next one.  The neck is still a bit big on me, but I'll just wear a cami or tank top.  I didn't realize I was that narrow, but I guess I am.  I would definitely make this again!
Oh, and this just happens to match the cute little bag that I got from Dana (Winter Creek Cloth) in a brown bag swap at the Corvallis Modern Quilt Guild meeting.  Is this cute or what?  
Stay tuned for the big sale that Winter Creek Cloth is having starting on May 26th. You don't want to miss it!  You could probably still find some of this awesome fabric....if I don't get to it first :)  

Monday, May 12, 2014

Bright Sky Birthday Quilt

I started something and can't seem to stop.  I made a birthday quilt for my friend Alana when she turned 50.  I decided at that point that I would make a quilt for each of my friends and sisters as they reached this very cool age! Some of my friends and other family members have already passed 50, so they missed out. One of my sisters turned 50 last year, so of course I made her a birthday quilt, too. 

About two weeks ago, another very good friend turned 50.  As usual (and I wouldn't want to disappoint!), I was late getting her gift to her.  If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen some of my in-progress posts.  I absolutely love how quickly this quilt went together!  It's Bright Sky by Blossom Heart Quilts.  I used Flower Power by Studio e which I got from Winter Creek Cloth
I love using my Kwik Klip to pin baste my quilts! Saves my nails and my fingertips!  
I always struggle with how to quilt my quilts.  Because I haven't spent enough time practicing free motion quilting, I end up doing straight lines.  I asked my husband and son for their ideas on quilting.  They were both on the same page, and then my son drew it out for me (because I need that). I didn't follow his drawing exactly (by accident), but I love how it turned out!  
Love me some binding!  
 Wonder clips for binding!  Huge timesaver!  

I'm pretty sure that she loved the quilt....I mean, who wouldn't!  I would totally make this again! 

Oh, and if you already get Winter Creek Cloth's newsletter, you already know about this month's giveaway, and it's a good one!!  See below!  If you aren't signed up for their newsletter, just go to their website, sign up, and use "NEWSLETTER QUILTS" in the subject line rather than just QUILTS.  

Fun, Free, Quilting Accessory! Sign up to WIN

Dreamin vintage quilt
We are giving away a Golden Afternoon Quilt Kitfeaturing Dreamin' Vintage by Jeni Baker for Art Gallery Fabrics!
Reply to this email with QUILTS in the Subject Line to enter your name for the drawing by May 15.
Congratulations to Anne Jackson, the winner of last month's drawing for a Sylvia Fat Quarter Bundle by Lotta Jansdotter for Windham Fabrics!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Gettin' my SEWjo on

I decided to join Kim over at My Go-Go Life for SEWjo Saturday.  I think we all know how many projects I've started but haven't finished (I'm workin' on that). Well, I wouldn't want to disappoint so I started yet another one.  I wanted one that I could just finish in a very short amount of today! And let's face it, the Mini Swoon by Thimbleblossoms that I started recently is not a quick pattern like I thought it was going to be.  Look at all the pieces! 
So....I switched gears and cut into my Joel Dewberry stash of Notting Hill fat eighths that I bought from Winter Creek Cloth sometime last year.  I flipped through Quilting Happiness because I remembered a little project in there that I wanted to make.  These little churn dash blocks. Just too dang cute! 

I was able to sew these two blocks fairly quickly today.  I made a promise to myself that I would sew one block at a time, quilt it, and bind it and be done with it before I started the next.  Ummmmm.....yeah, that didn't work.  I pieced one, LOVED it, and then wanted to start another.  I'm afraid that if I don't stop and just finish these two that I might end up making enough to make a quilt, and that's not what I want to do.  These two blocks, along with others, will be hung around the house, maybe all in one place, maybe not. They're only 6.5 x 6.5 inches! So cute and so easy! 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

My Big Scrappy Dresden Quilt

I recently finished a pretty dang big quilt for the Riley Blake Basics Challenge for the Modern Quilt Guild.  All MQG members who signed up were given a fat eighth of six different fabrics....and these fabrics were not all from the same line.....and actually looked like they would never look good all in the same me.....because I have a very difficult time with being scrappy.
My favorite one was the orange!  Even Mr. QJ liked that one and said "We have to get some more of that one!" Since I always do what he tells me to do (ha ha ha! only when it has to do with fabric), I'll stock up on that one!  

I decided that I would make something small.  That way, I could finish it within a short amount of time since I'm always waiting till the last minute to get started.  We were allowed to use all of the fabrics or just some of them, and we could add any solid and/or any other Riley Blake print.  I started going through my stash and found several Riley Blake prints that worked!  Yay stash!  
I thought about making a small Dresden plate or just a scrappy postage stamp mini quilt.  But then I came across a few Giant Dresdens online and fell in love. One of my favorites is Rita's at Red Pepper Quilts. I just sewed together six 2.5" strips of fabric, then used my Fons & Porter wedge ruler to cut out each Dresden.
I worked day and night on this thing, and it seemed to take forever.  Here are a few in-progress pics.  Yes, I drink wine when I'm sewing, and I've been known to spill red wine on my quilts.  It always comes out or gets covered with an applique of some sort.  

I used a bunch of Madhuri as well as all of the donated fabric from Riley Blake (except for the solid gray), and also some Riley Blake Gingham and Sunny Happy Skies, Dress Up Days by Doohikey Designs, and Bake Sale by Lori Holt

I'm not quite sure how mine ended up with a much bigger center than Rita's. Must have been a different degree of ruler??  Then I had the challenge of how big I wanted it to be.  Would I ever hang this on a wall?  Did I want to just make it a lap quilt?  Or did I want it to be big enough to have as an extra quilt on my bed?  I went through my stash and found a ton of yardage of this beautiful Sugar & Spice green tonal flowers from The Quilted Fish.  So I made it big.....big and green. 
Now.....the challenge of attaching this huge Dresden to the fabric.  I remembered seeing a great tutorial for starch applique by Natalia & Kathleen @ Piece n Quilt.  I had a question or two about the process and sent Natalia an email.  I know she's a busy lady, and I knew that she would eventually reply, but I really didn't expect to hear from her within just a few minutes!  She was so helpful, gave me some tips, and also recommended that I cut all the excess fabric off the back of the Dresden after I sewed it onto the background fabric to reduce the bulk - brilliant!  

I used my handy little guide to quilt circles about 2 inches apart all the way around.  The center ones don't look all that great, so I'm not even going to show them to you up close, and I thought I might end up redoing them, but I'll most likely just leave them that way.  This thing was a pain in the rear to quilt, especially the center circles.  I really want/need a bigger machine.  One of these days.....

So, here's the finished quilt. The lighting isn't so hot in this pic. I have the best studio for taking pics in the daylight with a big 8-foot window, but this obviously didn't get taken during the day.  

 I knew I wouldn't win any prizes with this, but it was great to challenge myself with a scrappy quilt.  Heck! I even did a scrappy binding!