Friday, December 21, 2018

Dalton quilt

Well. I sure didn't mean to disappear for a whole month, but here we are. I could blame secret sewing, holiday travel, sickness.... blah blah blah. You don't need to hear the details of all of that.

I've been waiting to share this quilt with you until it was safely in the hands of it's new owner. Leigh Anne, my oldest's best friend was married last month and I had every intention of finishing this up and getting it to her before her wedding. I actually started it in July! Plenty of time, you'd think. Well she has it now and I hope she and her new hubby enjoy it together for many many years.
The pattern is the Dalton Quilt, from Kristi Larson's book Southwest Modern. The fabrics are all Moda Bella Solids, sorry I do not have the color names. Oh, and it was beautifully quilted by my friend Diann at Happy Quilts...

Hubby and I had a great time with the photo shoot at a park in our neighborhood.
I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season! All of the Z Kids will be home in the next couple of days & I am looking forward to a house full of love and laughter.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Improv round robin

Yesterday was a fabulous day! Our improv small group (the comedy club quilters) had a sew day. We had been planning for quite a while to have a lightening round robin, like Sherri Lynn Wood describes in her book. We finally had the opportunity to do it yesterday. Six of us gathered at a retreat center and set to work.

Before we even arrived, each of us had prepared our center block....
Each person passed their block along to the next person, along with a basket full of curated fabrics (my fabrics were all black and white). Also, each person had a "signature fabric" which they added to each quilt that came their way (my signature fabric is the aqua print in the "center" of the black & white block). We allowed ourselves 30 minutes to work on each quilt (Sherri recommends 20 minutes but that didn't sound like enough for us). The only stressful part for me was that the girls bullied me into running the time clock! ok, bullied might be a strong word, haha, but they did twist my arm.

Gosh this was fun! I took before & after pics of each quilt I worked on (so prepare for photo overload!)

Here is Trae's beginning block:
I picked up on the red in the rooster & added my signature aqua:
Chris D's quilt came to me next:
and I added a strip carrying the orange print across:

Next up was Susan's very large quilt!

I sliced and diced a strip set to make a narrow border:
Chris's quilt had a spot that needed a set in, y seam block. I chose to ignore that and leave it for Bonnie to solve. Nice of me, huh?
she had a lot of gray in her box and no one had really dipped into it. There was also and orphan block which I added to my hashtag row:
Last up was Bonnie's quilt:
I thought it needed another big punch of that school bus yellow!
The afternoon went by so fast! I expected it to be stressful but it was so much fun. Here are our finished quilt tops....

I can't wait to see how everyone finishes them off.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

what to wear Wednesday, McCalls 7751

One of my goals for 2018 was to sew more garments. I've kind of gone in spurts with this throughout the year. Most recently garment sewing has stalled. Until last week! I had bought these Cotton & Steel lovelies when I was in NYC last month and wasn't sure what I planned to do with them.
I had three yards of the large print, clearly thinking it would be a great garment. Only one yard of the small print. It had not dawned on me when I purchased them that I might use the two together. Then I saw this pattern...
and I loved it. I didn't have quite enough of the large print to do the whole blouse, but that was fine with me. I used the small print for the collar, collar band and the side insets and I must say I am quite pleased with the results.
I love the asymmetry of the hem especially. The only alteration I made was to leave off the sleeve "cuffs". It seemed like a fussy detail that was unnecessary to me.
Look! It even has a faux button placket up the back. So cute.
you might be seeing me in this top a lot in the near future. maybe. Also, I think perhaps I'll make a couple more!

Thursday, November 1, 2018

fun with Sherri Lynn Wood

Last week the Dallas Modern Quilt Guild invited Sherri Lynn Wood to speak and teach for their guild members. Lucky for me, visitors were also welcome! Thursday night, a friend & I visited their guild meeting to hear Sherri speak.
If you don't know Sherri, she literally wrote the book on improv quilting. Her thought process is fascinating and her speaking style is engaging! If you ever get the chance to hear her speak, I recommend it (hint: she's the keynote speaker for Quiltcon 2019 in Nashville. Will I see you there?)

On Friday, my friends Bonnie, Anne & I attended her workshop on strip piecing and color theory.
It was a fun and interesting day. We did several "rounds" of strip piecing, each one based on different color parameters. 

Look how different all of our sets came out, even though we all used the same "rules". 

Here are my four strip sets:
I haven't figured out what I'll do with them yet! I do have a few ideas. 

Thanks Dallas Modern Quilt Guild for inviting us to play along with you!

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Michael Miller fabric challenge

The modern quilt guild issued another fabric challenge and I jumped on board! First of all, free fabric, duh! and second, I really enjoy challenges. We received three colors of the hash dots fabric and peach solid cotton couture, a fat eighth of each. Since it is ok to add other Michael Miller solids, I ordered some of the Marine Cotton Couture, which matched one of the hash dots we received. And, like always, it sat on my cutting table for weeks waiting for me to be inspired.

Finally, I decided to do a variation on my Funky Dresden pattern which I designed and shared here on the blog almost 2 years ago (gasp! where does the time go?).

We were told to use at least 2 of the three hash dots provided and the peach solid. The funny thing is, once I got to designing and sewing, the hash dot I left out is the Marine that matched the solid I had bought! I inserted a narrow piece of the peach into the other hash dot dresden wedges and only used the one background fabric, not two like I had in my previous Funky Dresdens.
My finished mini quilt ended up 13" square. I quilted it on my domestic Janome 6600 and left the wedges and center unquilted so they pop. 
It's fun to see what others have come up with! Check out the #mqgfabricchallenge on instagram to see more!

Monday, October 1, 2018

bee blocks for Tracy

It's October! New month means a new challenge for the Solid Seven bee. This month, Tracy requested 80s themed, neon solid bee blocks. So much possibility here.  I was traveling when she announced the theme and by the time I got home, many of the obvious choices had been taken. You really need to check out our hashtag, #thesolidseven, to see what everyone came up with. Here are mine, soon to be popped in the mail....

This one was a doozy! I plotted it out on graph paper then pieced it and appliqu├ęd the TV on top. Those center angled pieces were a challenge but I think it came out right. It's huge, almost 24" square, but I left to borders big so Tracy can cut it down as needed.

I decided to do something easy after I finished the MTV block. Tetris anyone?

She said she'd like words too.... I debated quite a few phrases and finally landed on Where's the beef? Who else remembers that cute little old lady in the Wendy's commercials? She cracked me up. Oh, I did embroider an apostrophe in "where's" but I forgot to snap a photo of that before I got my blocks ready to mail. You'll just have to believe me!

Pretty fun! I'm up next month. I've chosen a theme and a color scheme and can't wait to share it.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Fifth Saturday September

Today is the fifth Saturday of the month, which means it's time to present our next challenge projects at Boast & Toast, at Not Your Mama's Quilt Store. I'm not there for the fun today, but I dropped my project off ahead of time. I hope someone takes lots of pictures, because I love seeing what everyone has done!
This time the challenge fabrics were the cosmic print, the red tone on tone and the black grunge in the photo above. I added some extra black grunge and some pieces from my  stash that picked up the same colors. Oh and the tiny aqua border too...
My finished quilt is called "left out". Although the triangles are all the same size (cut with a ruler), I improv framed them so each square is different. The finished quilt is about 36 square. I quilted it on my domestic machine using one of the grid patterns from Jacquie Gering's Walk book, which I just love. Mostly red guetermann thread (my machine prefers guetermann) with a touch of aqua quilting. Can you find it?

Hope you're having a great, crafty weekend.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

wedding quilt

My best friend's daughter married her college sweetheart this weekend. We were so thankful to be included in the festivities. She had requested a quilt for their bed, mostly in blues, so of course I was happy to make one for her. I mixed in some greens and purples, mostly grunges and solids.
I used a pattern from the quilt book We Love Color which I had made before, but I enlarged the blocks so the quilt would be bigger. It's a fun pattern because the centers of the pluses are basically improved.

My pal Diann quilted it for me...

her quilting choices are always spot on.

 Wishing them all the happiness in the world.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

weaving more towels

I love having such a great assortment of colors of yarn to play and experiment with! I just finished up these towels using a combination of red and orange yarns...
I'm tempted to use these in my own kitchen... we'll see! The yarn is a combination of Valley 8/2 cotton from WEBS and  Bluegrass Mills cotton 6/2 yarn from The Woolery.
They are done in waffle weave using a 10 dent heddle on my rigid heddle loom. The binding is an Allison Glass quilting cotton that I love!
With my extra warp, I played around with learning how to do a clasped weft. This is something I look forward to exploring further! On the bottom is a clasped weft with doubled threads, on the top is single. I think I like the subtlety of the single threads much better...

I also wove some solid fabric to use for bag making. And now my loom is bare... time to warp up something new!