Sunday, June 26, 2016

lost socks

Almost a year ago, I was sitting with my friends Joellen & Carol eating lunch at a local quilt show, planning a block swap. We had all purchased the pattern, Lost Socks  and we thought it would be fun if we all made sock blocks then swapped them among the three of us. We wanted to use our stash, so there were no parameters on sock fabric. The backgrounds were all to be low volume creams.
 After we swapped our blocks, I buttonhole stitched around all of mine on the machine, then assembled my quilt top at our guild retreat in February. It was so much fun to put them all up on the giant design wall & play with the layout! I chose not to add borders to my quilt.

I took my quilt top to Lisa and she worked her magic on the longarm. She used five different overall quilt patterns on different sections of the quilt & it looks terrific! I put the last stitches in the binding this morning.

You might also notice that it's a BIG quilt! My handy dandy photo assistant (aka hubby) was not tall enough to hold it off the ground!
My finished quilt is 64" x 80". A fun finish! Also, the fourth and FINAL finish from my second quarter finish along list! Hooray! I came in under the wire this time....

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

ellyn's place makeover

After 2 years in our "new" house I've been reevaluating some of our spaces. One side of my studio space had a table & large bookcase that had become a huge pile-up spot. No matter how hard I tried, I could not keep the clutter straightened up. The table was basically useless. I realized what I really needed was more storage space!

Ikea to the rescue! Two KALLAX units later, I had regained floor space and cleaned up the mess!
Not only that, I managed to eliminate the ironing board that always seemed to be in the way. After seeing the pressing station on Sew Katie Did I knew that was the right solution for me too.
IKEA sells the wheels to fit the KALLAX units too! I followed Katie's directions and I adore my new pressing station. It fits perfectly against the wall, but can be rolled out if I need to iron something large. Perfect!
I used the rest of a vintage sheet to cover it, so it matches my mini ironing station that stays next to my machine. I have to admit, stripes were probably not the best choice as it was impossible to get them straight! Ah well, the way I destroy covers, I'll be making a new one before you know it. I think I will make removable covers from here on out, and just put them over the existing board.


This smaller unit gave me the perfect space to store many of my weaving supplies as well! I had been struggling to find a home for them.

Fingers crossed I can keep this space tidy more effectively now!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

rainbows

We've had a fun week at the Z house. In addition to Father's Day today, hubby had a birthday and we will celebrate an anniversary this coming week. Lots to be happy about! For hubby's birthday I decided to make him a mini quilt with his word of the year on it. When I saw Quiet Play's paper pieced squirrel pattern I knew it was perfect!
I had so much fun making this! It's all done in grunge from my stash (I had won a charm pack of grunge at a guild meeting months ago and many of the squares were perfect for this project!)
It was a one day project, start to finish (well, except for hand sewing the binding! I finished that up at Crafty Tuesday the next day). The pattern is fantastic and a good "advanced beginner" paper piecing project.

While I was in rainbow mode, I whipped up several heart blocks for the Modern Quilt Guilds Quilts for Pulse. Our guild hopes to assemble at least one complete quilt to contribute to the effort to provide comforting quilts to survivors of the shooting along with families of the victims. When difficult things like this happen in the world, I always feel so helpless. I'm so glad to have a way to contribute to the healing process.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

bears in the wild

Another baby quilt is done.... Bjorn Bear from Elizabeth Hartman's Woodland Animals Craftsy class. This was so much fun to make! Each bear had a zillion little pieces, but with her awesome tips & tricks, it was easy to keep them all sorted and labelled.
seriously, EACH ear has 10 pieces alone!
Ally chose all of the fabrics, a mix of blue/green/brown grunge & I love them all together!
My friend Sandy quilted paw prints which is just perfect! 

Today we have a nice cloud cover but no rain, so we headed to a nearby park with Hubby's truck to snap a few pictures. It was a bit frustrating as there was quite a bit of wind...

Poor Hubby's arms were getting tired holding up the bears & waiting for the wind to die down! 

But we did manage to get some fun shots!

Friday, June 10, 2016

weaving all the towels

When I got my rigid heddle loom for my birthday, my main objective was to weave kitchen towels. I'm excited to share that my quest to weave the perfect kitchen towel continues to evolve! Each set I weave becomes better and better, and I learn so much in the process.
with my loom warped with Peaches & Cream cotton yarn from Walmart and the weft in Love this Cotton from Hobby Lobby I wove this set....
Funny, I find that I like the inexpensive cotton yarns the best for towels. They weave into nice thick, absorbent towels.

When I get to the end of my warp, I like to experiment with different ideas. I only had a little bit of warp left from this set, and I proceeded to weave fabric selvages to see how I liked it. Pretty cool! I can see doing a whole warp of this for placemats or tote bag fabric in the future.
Ally has requested black & white towels for the apartment she'll be moving into in a couple of months. I decided to warp some stripes of black into the white warp for added interest...
I wasn't sure how I'd like weaving black & white. I'm a color girl after all. But, much to my amazement, they came out very cool!
done in waffle weave which I'm rather fond of!
Again, these are inexpensive peaches & cream yarn. I finished them with a bound hem which gives them a nice finish.

I had quite a bit of warp left from these. Enough to weave a whole extra towel. I pulled out my 8/2 cotton Valley yarn from Webs, a much finer yarn and created this very warp faced towel. It has a wonderful drape but is still thick enough to be absorbent! I'm keeping this one for myself & see many more like it in my future.
I did this in a plain weave and like it a lot
I think that makes 12 towels woven so far, with many many more to come!


Monday, June 6, 2016

another finish

Horray! this is finish number three for me in the second quarter of the finish along. That means I only have one more.... I think I can!
This baby quilt is my variation of a pattern in the most recent issue of McCalls Quick Quilts. I had been hanging onto several fat quarters of Amy Sinabaldi's Paperie fabric waiting for the perfect opportunity to use them and this sweet baby quilt was it! I mixed in one Cotton and Steel print, bordered it all in a sweet polka dot & I love the result.

I even quilted it myself, using the serpentine stitch on my Janome.
I went with a scrappy binding, using all of the prints in the quilt. I hadn't done this in a long time!
This one will go off to a new baby later this summer.
SaveSave

Friday, May 27, 2016

Everyday Hipster Bag

Recently my friend Mahriam from Three Owls Handmade asked me to pattern test her newest pattern, the Everyday Hipster Bag. Ok, let's be honest, she didn't ask. I begged. I fell in love with her adorable bag and pretty much snatched her rough pattern instructions out of her hand before she had even had a chance to make them pretty. And very quickly (seriously, this bag can be whipped together in about an hour) I had this gem and was wearing it everywhere...
 Peppered cotton and Cotton and Steel prints
And then I started making little piles of fabric and dreaming about having a whole wardrobe of these sweet bags. Suddenly the linen and Liberty Lawn I had bought at Purl Soho turned into this...


And then my sister mentioned that she'd like a black one...
black Moda Weave and Cotton and Steel prints
You could say I'm smitten with this adorable bag pattern. My favorite part is the gusset, which I totally love fussy cutting from prints
The bag is so lightweight you can wear it everywhere & not even notice you have it on. It's just the right size for some cash and your cards and the front pocket is perfect for your phone. M included measurements to adapt the strap length for your favorite kiddo too. 

The pattern is now available for sale here. You're going to want to make one of these. Or two. Or twelve. Trust me!