Saturday, April 19, 2014

getting ready for summer

Spring is here (FINALLY!) and summer is right around the corner. As much as I hate the summer weather in Texas, I am looking forward to some things. For one, our new house has a beautiful front porch. Yesterday we bought some new furniture so we can sit out there and watch the world go by (aka spy on the neighbors, HA!)

Another thing I'm looking forward to this summer is teaching sewing to the teens from church. It's been a while since they've come over. They're just so busy! I want to teach them some new quilting skills, but making a whole quilt is probably too much for their schedules. I came up with the idea to teach them some new things making pillows! That way they can finish up a project in a day or two. So far I have 2 pillow samples ready for them. This one, using 4 economy blocks to make up the front...
And this one, with half square triangles (which they can have great fun arranging in any configuration they want.)
 Did you see who is helping me in the studio today? Lexi loves the sun that comes in through my skylight!

I'm a fan of dressing up the backs of pillows too, usually with a little ric rac. The first pillow has contrasting ric rac tucked under a binding...
 I didn't have contrasting ric rac that worked on the second pillow so I used a matching ric rac along the edge....

So, in making 2 pillows they will learn to make economy blocks and half square triangles, do some straight line quilting on the machine and big stitch quilting by hand and learn to assemble envelope style pillow covers. Should be fun!


Thursday, April 17, 2014

pincushions

I'm blogging about pincushions over on the McKinney Modern Quilt Guild blog today....

Monday, April 14, 2014

little things

Hello friends. Yes, I know I've been a slacky blogger. One of those darned spring colds hit me last week and I was as lazy as can be! Ok, enough excuses. One day I did get it in my head I needed to play around with a tumbler template that I've had for ages. I dug out a charm pack of Wishes and put together this little topper....

 Cute, huh? Maybe it will become a pillow. Or a mini. Not sure just yet, but it was fun and easy to do. I also put my new paper piecing skills to good use one day and created this pincushion for an upcoming swap....
The pattern is in the book Patchwork Please and I just love it! It was fun and quick to do. There are several more paper piecing patterns in that same book that I plan to try out soon.

That's about it from here, pretty pathetic, I know! But, I am feeling better and will have more to share soon. I promise!

What have you been making lately?

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

chalkboard for the studio

I like to have a chalkboard in my studio space where I can keep a list of projects that need to be finished. In my old space I had a small chalkboard. When we moved, I decided I wanted a nice big chalkboard! I found this awesome frame at Hobby Lobby and purchased it half price....
 Bought a nice smooth board and had hubby cut it to fit. Also purchased chalkboard paint. I debated between the spray paint and the regular paint. In the end I decided rolling on the paint would be less messy...
 A small roller was definitely the way to go. The paint went on very smoothly
 I used four coats of paint (and have plenty left over for another project!)
Look how great it looks hanging in my space! The chalkboard space measures 18x20 inches. Plenty of room for my list (if I write small!)
 My minis wall is evolving too! I added the clock I bought at the general store when we went to the Jefferson Quilt show (I love how it looks retro even though it is brand new) and my word of the year, GRACE.

 I love how my space is evolving.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

learning something new

I like to do things that I'm good at, things that I've known how to do for a long time! I like to sit down to sew & zip through a project without thinking too much (and have it come out great!) Anybody else? Well every now & then it's healthy to step outside the old comfort zone and try something new. 

Yesterday some friends taught me to foundation paper piece. Mom had taught me once, years ago, and I never ever did it again after that. Let's just say it did not stick in my head! So yesterday I started from scratch. First, I made this simple block (just to build confidence and let me know I could indeed do this!)
 And then, are you ready? I tackled the paper pieced version of the Marcelle Medallion center! My friend Lisa had drafted it up for us and it worked like a charm!
I am so thrilled with my all-solids version of this incredible block that I am going to move on and put the borders on it. Yay! AND I am NOT going to let this new skill slip away like I did last time (sorry Mom!).

Have you tried anything new lately?

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Calendar journal

I can't believe March is over and April has already arrived! March was such a busy month here, it just flew by! Since moving to a new house was such a big part of my month I made "home" a focus for my March calendar....
 I had so much fun doing this that I have already created a calendar page for April. I decided to journal in raindrops hoping we will get some much needed rain this month....
Can't wait to see this page all filled up too!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

this and that

Yay! my wall of minis is beginning to come together! I put my three Thimbleblossoms minis up the other day and I must say, I love the way they all play together....
 As you can see, I have lots of room to add to this wall.... also, my fabric is all unpacked but looking rather messy. sigh.
 Has anyone else been contemplating making a Marcelle Medallion quilt from the Liberty Love book? Or am I the only one that crazy? Do a search for them on Pinterest, you will be amazed! I have to be honest, it's the center block that intimidates me the most. I decided to give the block a trial run, using some fabrics from my stash....

It's not perfect but it's not horrible, right? This was, most definitely the most difficult quilt block I have ever attempted. I will try it again. Perhaps in solids? Stay tuned....