Monday, December 14, 2009

Hope Valley

Busy days here! I'm behind in posting some Christmas swap photos. I really want to show off the gorgeous pillow BJ Mama made! It is so adorable and just perfect for my home!

Things are hectic as I'm moving this week and my place is a jumble of boxes. I can't wait to just get on with it, get the move done and get on with unpacking everything into my new home. Setting up the kitchen should be my priority, but between us - I really just can't wait to set up a nook for my sewing machine and get some shelves so I can organize my stash once and for all.

I have it on good authority from the birthday fairy that I can look forward to receiving a bundle of Denyse Schmidt's Hope Valley collection!

*happy sigh*

I LOVE the colour-wave of DS's new line! So soft, feminine and pretty!

The best prices I've seen for a 1/2 yard of each fabric is over at fabricworm. Cynthia is selling 1/2 yard bundles for $102 USD. I've been looking around the net, and that's a sweet deal! If you've found the collection priced lower, please leave me a note!


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunday Stash #4

This is an older photo of some of my stash. I went through a black & white & grey phase last summer. I had big ambitions to do a Denyse Schmidt "Single Girl" quilt using this palette. I'd still like to, as well. Once I can wrap my head around cutting out all those templates and squares.

The fabrics are a mix of Anna Griffin, unknowns and a Heather Ross print. I do love Heather Ross! I love her sense of whimsy that comes through in all her designs.


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

String Quilt for my Dad

This is the first (and only) string quilt I've made. But I'm looking forward to making many more! Especially after being inspired by Penny at sewtakeahike. Love, love, LOVE her gorgeous rainbow-hued "With a Little Help From My Friends" scrappy string quilt!

The fabric in this quilt is predominantly Amy Butler Midwestern Mod range with an Anna Griffin and a couple of unknown others thrown in. The backing is also from Amy Butler 's Midwestern Mod collection.

I made it for my father for Christmas last year, mostly as a Christmas gift but also as a HUGE thank you for the awesome Pfaff sewing machine he and my mom bought me the year before.

After making this quilt, my eye grew very tired of muted shades and now I am addicted to working with brighter colours against a white background.


Monday, November 16, 2009

Sunday Stash #3

Ooops. I'm a day late but thought I'd post anyway...

I went through a pink phase a while ago and pulled these fabrics from my stash. It'll be a while before I'm back into quilting with pink but still, I find these really pretty to look at.

I've been steadily building up my stash over the last year or so (read: let my addiction run out of control), and started to collect conversation fabric. No idea what I'll do with the cupcake print but it might be fun to see a square of it in an "I Spy" quilt.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Christmas Gift Tutorial Swap: Reversible Apron

This is the Cottage Chic Cooking Apron tutorial I made for the Christmas Gift Tutorial Swap. I waited on posting a photo until after my swap partner, BJ Mama received it in the mail. I didn't want to spoil the surprise!

The reversible apron tutorial came from the amazingly talented Kathleen Doughtery at Grosgrain Fabulous. I am not half the seamstress she is, in fact I am quite a newbie. She suggests two hours to make this apron. For me? I needed, oh, twelve! Granted, that wasn't in one sitting and I also put it down to the fact this was the first time in my life I've ever sewn an apron, let alone reversible with a ruffle.

All in all, the tutorial is really easy and the instructions are clear, easy to follow too। When I made a second apron, it only took me four hours, so I'm guessing the more familiar I become with the pattern, and more importantly, the techniques, the faster everything will come together (within reason। If you can knock this off in thirty minutes, you are super-human).

Things that I changed on my second apron: I made the apron ties longer, the ruffle wider, and I cut the apron front & back in a bigger, more rounded "U" shape.

While the pattern doesn't stipulate using fat quarters, I found that you can easily use fat quarters and fudge the width by making your ruffle bigger (a look I like anyway).

I will definitely make a few more of these for Christmas gifts!


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Sunday Stash #2

I'm playing around with the idea of using these fabrics to make some more potholders and coordinating tea towels for Christmas gifts.

I'm in love with fresh lemon and zesty orange right now, punctuated with hits of bright turquoise, cool greys and sharp brown.

Last week I was all about soft orange, gentle green and baby blue. Funny how the eye needs change!

- k

Friday, November 6, 2009

Christmas Coffee Cup Cozy

When Starbucks rolls out its iconic red Holiday cup, you know the season is upon you.

But who wants to be like everyone else, running around with the same cup (or cup sleeve)? Not me. So I whipped up this baby the other night when my friend N came over for a potluck dinner (she made the best homemade pizza) and some crafting.

Bonus - I get to save a few more paper cup sleeves over the holiday


Monday, November 2, 2009

Block Party Quilt-A-Long!!!!!

Trust me, you do NOT want to miss out on this! Block Party is having a quilt-a-long and you know how I was just writing in my last entry about blogs that have inspired me and my quilting over the last year? Well this is one of them.

Block Party started as a virtual quilting bee for twelve women spread out over the U.S. and let me tell you, all twelve women are gifted with great eyes for colour and style.

They're having a give-away too, so if you leave a comment on their blog, sign up, and blog about it, you get a chance to win some fabric that will make your heart skip a beat.


Mom's Apricot Fence Rail

I started quilting three years ago. Well, that's when I first learned how to do a nine-patch and since then I've progressed quite a bit both in terms of my skill level and my taste. I do love the traditional patterns but over the last year I've really started to gravitate more towards modern quilting. I think it's the wonderful influence of all the blogs I read!! My eyes have been opened to a whole new way of looking at quilting.

In anycase, my mom is a more traditional gal, and after she and my father came together (they're divorced) to buy me a Pfaff ClassicStyle Quilt sewing machine three years ago, I knew the first quilt I wanted to sew would be for her as thanks for the amazing sewing machine (dad, poor dad, was 2nd on the list).

I did a little photo shoot when I was at her place over Thanksgiving, and here is her quilt.

The only problem? It still doesn't have a name! I feel so bad about it being nameless. It's almost as bad as a quilt being homeless.

Any and all suggestions welcome!

- k

New Year Challenge

Do you have a stack of UFOs? Would you love to end the year with a clean crafty-quilty slate?

I don't know about you, but I work best with deadlines and with only TWO months left in 2009, Jacquie's challenge is just the thing to help me get my butt in gear. My Capricorn nature seems to thrive on having a goal in my crosshairs, a mountain to climb, or in this case a few UFOs that I would love to finish up by the end of the year.

In typical fashion, I may have bitten off more than I can chew because I also made a personal vow to give handmade gifts this year (of course, they don't necessarily have to be made by *me*), and I am also moving at the end of November (yikes! And I haven't started packing).

As they say, "Aim for the stars and maybe you'll reach the sky."


Sunday Stash #1

Okay, so I'm a little late posting but here is some adorable fabric I bought this weekend. Well, I think it's pretty darn sweet.

I am in love with the David Walker "Oh Boy!" print! I'm going to make a baby quilt from this using the Cowboy baby pattern in Material Obsession. I love the cowboy prints used in the book but I'm going to a baby shower at the end of the month and I suspect my friend will like the zoo theme better (cowboy might be too edgy for her), plus ... this is what they had in stock at my LQS.

And here it is up close... Aren't those animals cute?! I could stare at the print for hours. I know. I have a problem. I wish I could get paid for staring at fabric and admiring it.

In any case... usually I get scared about cutting into my fabric as if somehow the act of slicing it up takes away some of its magic. But in this instance, I'm looking forward to it! Cannot wait to get cracking on this baby quilt.

- k

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Queen of Hearts and Alice in Wonderland Costume Set GIVEAWAY!!!!

Queen of Hearts and Alice in Wonderland Costume Set GIVEAWAY!!!!

Go here to see the MOST amazing Halloween costume. EVER!!

I don't know if Kathleen of Grosgrain Fabulous makes and sells a pattern for it, but it is the most delightful costume I've ever seen. I've never "hearted" a design so much.

It makes my ovaries flip faster than the Queen Of Hearts loses her temper.

- km

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Christmas Gifts A Go-Go...

Work has been crazy busy, but I'm carving out time to get on with making gifts for Christmas. I'm determined to make this a handmade holiday. It's so easy to buy something, usually made in China, and while that's fine and goodness knows, I've done that a lot in the past... This year I want to walk my talk of buying local or handmade, and better still - make it myself.

I can't describe how rewarding it is to have an idea then bring it to life. If you're a fellow quilter, crafter, baker, or anyone creative, then you know what I mean! And I'm not going to lie, I DO love the wonderful exclamation "You made that?!! WOW!!"

So... onwards. Here are some photos from my latest adventure in sewing. Jacquie from Tall Grass Prairie Studio has some wonderful tutorials, and I loved her kitchen set tutorial. I thought this would make a great gift set for a few of my friends. Since not all of my friends go made with decorating for the holidays, I thought I'd make the set in fabrics that can be in the kitchen year 'round. I made a trip to The Workroom to pick up "just one fat quarter" to round out my stash. Ahem.

I walked out of the shop with these:

There's something about the mix of brown, aqua, grey and linen that just calls to me right now. But then I realized I didn't really have a focal fabric. Not like the adorable Michael Miller "Holiday Hostess" print Jacquie used in her tutorial.

I decided to improvise and broke out my embroidery floss, grabbed some white Kona cotton scraps, Jenny Hart embroidery iron-on designs and le voila...

I made a couple of wonky log cabin blocks using the embroidered squares as my focal point, and cut a 10x10" square of the Robert Kaufman beater print for the back...

Then I sandwiched using warm and natural cotton batting and insulate -- a special batting for oven mitts and that type of thing.

My quilting... it needs work! I don't know how the fabric went wonky in that one place, but I am getting better with practice.

Here is the complete set -- two potholders and a coordinating tea towel.

I just need to put a grommet in each pot holder and this set is done.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Another Swap!!

The blocks from my teammates in the Scrappy Christmas Hedgerow Block swap are starting to arrive and they are just GORGEOUS! I have to post photos because they are so wonderful. I love them! Fingers crossed they are having the same reaction to the blocks I sent out.

And while I'm on a roll, I signed up for Fancy Peacock's Christmas Gift Tutorial Swap!

Check it out and sign up too!

There are a lot of crafty ideas I've seen perusing my (VERY long) list of favorite quilty blogs, but I think I'm going to do this Cottage Chic apron tutorial from Grosgrain Fabulous. I've been itching to sew an apron for a long time now and this is the perfect jump start!


Friday, September 11, 2009

Love by Amy Butler


Just when I vow to get control over my fabric addiction, I find out from True Up that this is coming soon!

I, well, just LOVE Amy Butler's new line! Check it out and tell me what you think.

- k

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

1930s Reproduction Stash

I love looking at this fabric! There are so many possibilities for it, I just can't decide where to start.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Cathedral quilt in the making

Now that I'm done my Scrappy Christmas Hedgerow blocks, I can get back to work on this.


Scrappy Hedgerow Christmas Quilt

I had so much fun making my blocks for the Scrappy Hedgerow Christmas Block Swap, that I made a few (ahem) extra for me to make a second quilt.

This week, I took advantage of having an extra day off and finished the candy cane blocks. Then, as you know, one thing lead to another and I started - and finished - sashing the blocks too.

This is one of my favourite blocks:

It brings back memories of playing with Barbies and colouring in "Gibson Girls" colouring books on family trips to Florida. I so love this quilt top and can't wait to get on with the next steps! Now the *only* thing I need to do is the backing, quilting and binding.

I certainly don't want to hurry winter along, but I am going to enjoy cuddling under this quilt come Christmas time.

- k

Monday, August 31, 2009

Scrappy Hedgerow Christmas Blocks Redo

I wasn't thrilled with the blocks I made and then I came across some fantastic inspiration! Michael Miller's "Holiday Hostess". I made three of each for the block exchange and then, yes, a few more for me. I cannot wait to see how this quilt comes together!

More photos to come!

- k

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Scrappy Hedgerow Christmas Blocks

I'm not sure if I like the blocks or not.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Christmas Fabric

It's a start!

Most of my Christmas fabric stash is at my mom's but I had itchy fingers today and paid a trip to one of my local quilting stores to supplement the small stash I had at home...

I'll be honest -- I'm going back and forth on whether I like the fabrics. I love a scrappy look, but this is the first time I've ever done a Christmas block so I feel a little unsure about mixing fabrics from various lines and different Christmas patterns. Maybe I'm too conservative for my own good.

So, I'm going to do a little experiment and see how all the reds and greens work with the candy cane focal fabric. I'm visiting my mom this week, so if I hate the look, I know I have a lot more Christmas fabric I can add to new blocks.

Wish me luck!


It's official! I'm participating in modernjax's Scrappy Christmas Block swap! I'm delighted. We're using this pattern from Elizabeth at Oh, Fransson! I've been itching to try it and now this is the perfect excuse (as if one ever needs an excuse to quilt!).

This is my first block swap and now the pressure is on. Must create something beautiful that my recipients will like.

I have some Christmas fabric in my stash, but oh darn... I'll just have to go buy some more. Rats. ;-)

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Summer Delight!

The photos are poor quality but the quilt is finished! This is the disappearing nine-patch lapsize quilt made from white and Moda "Sanctuary" charm squares.

I'm calling it "Summer Delight" and giving it to my favorite aunt and uncle. It just so happens their twenty-eighth anniversary is next week, but I also made this as part of my 101 mission (101 things in a 1001 days).

Inspired by Amanda Jean's work over at Crazy Mom Quilts, I pieced the back using a plain white muslin and more Sanctuary charm squares. I think I like the back better than the front! The fabric is so soft and cuddly. I loved working with the muslin so much (and the low price doesn't hurt either), that it's become my new favorite. In fact, I love it so much, I used the muslin for the front of my other disappearing nine-patch.

I quilted using "in the ditch" and just went around all the squares. Even though I took a free-motion quilt class a couple of months ago, I'm too chicken to try stippling on a big quilt. Guess it's time for me to get over it - but I'll probably start off with a baby quilt as my experiment and not something bigger until I'm proficient.

The quilt is labelled and ready to be delivered. I haven't washed it yet, though, and I'm debating whether I should before I give it to my aunt and uncle.

I love the crinkly look of a washed quilt, but is that the protocol? To wash the quilt before you gift it?

What do you do?


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sweet Peek!

I finished my Moda "Sweet" disappearing nine-patch top! I cannot wait to baste and quilt this baby, then snuggle under it some lazy afternoon. I love the look of a scrappy quilt with lots of white. The photo is from my i-Phone, so definitely not the best quality picture, but you get the idea.

Work has been crazy busy, but I finished the Sanctuary disappearing nine-patch for my aunt and will post photos of it too. I'm really happy with how it turned out, especially the pieced backing. I'm hoping to have time this weekend to at least baste this quilt. And, if I'm really ambitious and energetic, I'll finish the top on my double wedding ring (I only have the borders to sew), and baste it too.

Hope you're having a good week!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Ah... To Be A Quilter...

I guess I must be one when I have a pile of WIPs needing my attention WHILE I am making a list of the projects I would like to start (and finish) this summer!

Here's an inventory of what I have on the go:

Double Wedding Ring (lapsize)
Status: need to sew borders, sew backing, sandwich, quilt, and bind. Needs a proper name.

This one I want to keep for myself. In some ways, it's too special to give to anyone - hello! It's my first double wedding ring quilt. Also, because it's my first double wedding ring quilt, there are far too many mistakes in it to give as a gift!

Pretty & Prep (Lapsize)
Status: need to finish the top - I'm 2/3 done, sandwich, quilt, and bind. Needs a proper name.

This one I may give to my mom or I might auction it off for breast cancer research if I do the End Breast Cancer 2-day Walk again this year. I know for sure that one of my quilts this year will be donated to charity.

Santuary Disappearing Nine Patch (Lapsize) DONE!!!! (as of June 2009)
Status: top is done, need to sew backing, sandwich, quilt, and bind. Needs a proper name.

I wanted to keep this one for myself, I really did. But I found out this week that my fav aunt was diagnosed with stage 1 breast cancer, so it now has a new home. I know my aunt is going to pull through and beat the cancer, I'm not worried about that. But I wanted to make her a quilt and the colours are so summery, I think it'll give her the extra zing to put the cancer behind her.

Santuary Pinwheels (crib size)
Status: squares are cut, need to piece together for the top.

I think I may give this to my cousin and his wife to celebrate the birth of their second child, a daughter.

Project Wish List

Now! Here's a list of the projects I would love to start and finish this year! It's crazy ambitious given my work schedule and my desire to have a social life, oh and also enjoy being outdoors while the weather is nice!

Christmas Quilt

I need one!! I'm inspired by Amanda Jean at Crazy Mom Quilts, and may do a Candy Bar lapsize quilt or a stacked coins quilt, mostly because hers look so pretty and also because they look like a fairly easy and quick top to put together. Right now, I'm all about speed and wanting to get something done!

In an ideal world, I would also make one for my mom and another for my dad to give as gifts at Christmas (well, for my Dad, I would give him a neutral, year-round quilt because he doesn't decorate for the holidays the way my mother does).

Sweet Disappearing Nine Patch

I LOVE Moda's "Sweet" fabric line, just love it! And I also love how easy this pattern is. I mean, it is stupid easy. I was so delighted by how simple the Sanctuary quilt was to put together and by how it shows off the fabrics. So I just might splurge on another two charm packs or fat quarters, and make one of these for me. A girl can't have too many quilts, can she?

Quilt for My Aunt Mary

I am participating in 101 in 1001 days, and on my list of things to do, I have included making a homemade gift for my aunts and uncles, and delivering it in person to them (well the ones who live within driving distance). So if I give my other aunt the Sanctuary Disappearing Nine Patch, I would like to make something for Mary and give it to her before the year is over so she knows that I haven't forgottten about her. I need to repair my relationship with her - it's fallen by the wayside, but not because of any bad blood. We're just not close.

Fresh Cut Flowers Queen Size

I have two sample packages of Heather Bailey's Fresh Cut Flowers line and I think I know what I want to do with them! I am so inspired by the many quilt blogs I read, and when I saw this scrappy patchwork square (or rectangle) Ashley of Film In The Fridge made - I thought "Aha!"

I love the look of white accented by colour! This would be a fantastic design to show off my favorite fabrics. The pattern reminds me, too, of Denyse Schmidt's Single Girl Ring quilt, but will be so much easier to do with straight lines and no curves. Whew!

Aprons & Placemat gifts

I really want to make some home-made gifts for Christmas this year, and I'm thinking that aprons and placemats will be my signature present for the people near and dear to me (who aren't getting quilts). So I better start cracking on this because I am also moving this fall too, which will mean all my sewing will be in a disarray come holiday-prep time.

That's quite a to-do list!

Wish me luck.


Thursday, May 14, 2009

Disappearing Nine Patch

Photo to go here of Moda "Sanctuary" Disappearing Nine Patch quilt.

It's a lapsize quilt and I finished the top in record time. Started Monday evening and finished the top tonight. Just need to decide on fabric for the backing, then baste, quilt and bind. I could have this sucker finished before the end of the month if I am diligent.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Coin Quilt Pattern

From one of my fav daily reads, Cluck Cluck Sew, this is a pattern I am REALLY looking forward to trying:

Colorful Coins Quilt Pattern Colorful Coins Quilt Pattern cluckclucksew Colorful Coins Quilt Pattern, PDF

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Sanctuary Pinwheels

Photos of quilt in progress to go here.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Why I Quilt

A couple of years ago, my best friend's mom, Rose, taught me how to do a 9-patch quilt. I've been hooked ever since. Even as I was working on my first quilt, I was dreaming of the next quilt I'd make and the one after and the one after that one and so forth. That's when Rose declared another quilter had been born. You know you're a quilter when you think of five other quilts you want to make even before you start to sew your first block on a work-in-progress.

I attribute my love of quilts to being a former blanket-baby.

From birth to age seven (okay, longer than that), I dragged Ninnie everywhere. He was a yellow wool crib-size blanket with yellow satin edging. He was also my best friend, confidant, and comforter. Where ever I went, he went too, and he gave me a sense of home. Peace. Contentment.

Ninnie has long since been retired (although he still maintains a spot of privilege at my father's house), but I still get a profound sense of security from wrapping myself up in the comfort of a snuggly quilt. Nothing beats it, especially when that quilt has been handmade with love.

This is why I quilt - to create works of happiness and comfort that offer up warmth and love.

- k


Photos to go here of pink and green lapsize quilt-in-progress

Katie Jump Rope Double Wedding Ring Quilt

The photo quality is terrible (but actually kinda good when you consider it was snapped on a cell phone...), but this is the start of my Double Wedding Ring Quilt using mostly Denyse Schmidt's "Katie Jump Rope" line. I have a few prints from other lines, like Lecien and I think, maybe, Aunt Grace.

The wedding ring is raw-edge applique. I have the blocks all finished and now *all* I have to do is add the border (plain white), sandwich, baste, quilt and bind.

I'm thinking that this is a quilt I will send out for quilting - mostly because I don't trust my skill-level yet on a quilt this time-consuming to put together.