Saturday, March 29, 2014

My Quilt Bucket List

I’m one for making lists.  I make lists all the time – to-do lists, home project lists, quilt/sewing lists, wish lists, I love lists.  Sometimes, though, it’s nice to consolidate them down – my quilting list for example.  So the Quilty Bucket List Blog Hop got me inspired to think about what I really want to make. 
I tried to drill down, but mine’s still lengthy.  Some of the items could be combined into one quilt, or at least grouped together in categories.  I think I’ll make a bucket list page on my blog with the complete list (including techniques and my apparel/other sewing bucket list) so it’s centrally referenced for the future.  So, here it is. 

*note, images are from my Quilting Board on Pinterest but are referenced to the original source.  Please visit the original links for additional details on these lovelies.*

Specific Quilts
Dear Jane – it seems to be the holy grail of quilts.  I recently got a copy of the book after ogling it for years online.  This would for sure be a long term project, but it might be one I have to go ahead and start – a block a week or something like that?  I want to make my blocks 6” so the quilt will fit our bed, so at some point I’ll be getting the software.  Not yet, though.  There are more pressing projects.

Starry Night (from APQ) - I love both the antique two-tone version and the scrappy modern version.  

Genome Quilt – I have been fascinated by this quilt forever.  HST’s galore.

Scrappy/Stash Busting Quilts
Medallion Quilts - Marcelle Medallion or the Medallion Quilt-Along from a couple years ago.  

Star Quilts – Radiant Star, Lonestar, Lemoyne Star, I want to make them all.
Giant Log Cabin (just one huge block making a throw size quilt)

Vintage Inspired Quilts
Wholecloth quilt – I have a couple of ideas – one a simple diamond quilted counterpane for our bed and the other using a printed fabric or vintage tablecloth for the wholecloth.  But these fascinate me.
Two Color Quiltsred and white flying swallows and a cheddar and white quilt.  One day. 

Techniques to Try
Ruched quilt or pillows – love seeing them in decorating mags.
Dresden block

Braided border/quilt
Cathedral Window – I just saw this tutorial that made it seem doable.
New York Beauty – another quilt along I didn’t participate in but bookmarked and printed off instructions.   
                                Even if it’s just a block that turns into a pillow, I have to try it someday.   
Pine Burr block – inspired by original block from Scrap Quilts by Judy Martin, published in 1985.

Current Patterns
Steampunk by Jen Kingwell
Sparklepunch – quilt along instructions by Oh Fransson!
HST Overload pattern by Red Pepper Quilts.  I’ve loved this from the first time it appeared on my computer
Fly Away with Me by Marge George.  I saw this quilt on the Green Fairy Quilts blog and the block of the month from Material Obsession.  What I don’t know – is the pattern available anywhere?  It’s fantastic.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Almost Wordless Wednesday

Pieced a little Gypsy Wife - Hope from Hartford

Friday, March 21, 2014

Farmer's Wife Friday - 3.21.14

Progress was really sad this week because I came down with strep throat on Sunday morning.  I hadn't had that in 20(ish) years since I was a kid.  I swear it hurt worse and lasted longer than I remember.  Today (day 6) I finally feel almost normal again with just a slight tickle and soreness, so that Z-pak seems to have worked.  I think everyone at work (and in my family) is ready for some spring weather and spring cleaning.  We had about 1/3 of my office out sick this week, and it's been a nasty winter for sickness with my family.  Just one more possible snow storm (fingers crossed!).

- Bobbins Used in Quilting: I'm currently on #19
- Hours of Quilting: 28.25 so far (yes, just one hour of quilting this week)
- Blocks Quilted: 76 (plus four setting triangles)
- Blocks to Go: 52 (plus setting triangles and border)  

I have just been feeling bogged down, and as much as I want to finish this quilt and have it on my bed, I am feeling so inspired by kids clothes and Easter outfits right now.  So I have been thinking about taking a mini-break from the Farmer's Wife and getting some of these other things out of my system.  Before I did that though, I knew I needed to see how far I'd come, so I dragged the quilt outside this afternoon after work and took these shots.  THIS is what I've been trying to show you, but the sunlight is sooo much better than my basement sewing dungeon.  

It's funny, I see all the flaws when I'm doing the quilting (if you were a fly on the wall you'd hear the odd groan and curse escape), but in the sun, it looks gorgeous.  Sorry for all the pictures, but I kind of amazed myself this afternoon.  

I'm so close to having a corner done!

The back is so awesome!

As good as it was for me to see how far I've come and to be re-inspired on this one, I still think I need to take a break for a bit.  Not for long, but for a couple weeks maybe until I get irritated with garments and such.  It's how I roll.  

This weekend I'll be cleaning up my cluttered cutting table and piles and trying to get some things sorted.  The hubby is away this weekend, so the mama will play in her sewing room every minute the kiddos don't need me!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

WIP Wednesday - Strep Throat Edition

I’ve been a bum lately.  Last week I was just off my sewing mojo, and then Sunday I came down with strep throat.  Let me tell you, strep throat as an adult stinks!  I’m on day 4, and things are getting better, but man is my throat raw and sore.  It is a beauty when you look in there with a flashlight.  And my husband tells me I’ve been snoring. 

It’s been quite a ride the last three months in my house with various illnesses.  We’ve had the perfect storm for incubating all the germs.  My parents living with us after their chimney fire exposed us to all the germs they bring home from their jobs, the kids going to a new daycare for two months exposed us to all those lovely bugs, and I’ve brought stuff home from my work – plus the weather hasn’t been conducive to people staying healthy this year.  It’s been a hard winter both weather and illness-wise.  Hopefully we’ll turn the corner soon.
Anyways, where was I?  Oh yes, not much to show the last couple weeks, what with me being a sewing bum.  It happens.  I have done a little more chain piecing on my Burgoyne Surrounded / APQ Quilt-Along blocks.  I have nine center sections done and lots of other parts sitting around in various stages.  Truthfully, I’ve only worked on it in sneaky 15 minute increments here and there in the mornings.  But at least it’s progress (no matter how slow) and not sitting in a box like my other UFOs.

I bought the Small Fry Skinny Jeans pattern from Titchy Threads and got all the pieces cut out for both kids.  Material is selected, threads and most of the notions purchased (the notions about put me in the nuthouse poorhouse – jeans rivets and snaps are expensive!).  I still need to order a roll of buttonhole elastic, and then I think I’ll be set to try my first pair sometime soon.  If I don’t get to them before April, they’ll have to sit awhile – Easter outfits will take precedence then. 

The Farmer’s Wife quilt hasn’t made much progress this week, but we’ll talk about it on Friday. 

Here's a little #honestcraftroom for you.  This needs to get cleaned up big time before the end of the month.
If I can get this strep gone for good and get my mojo back, I’m mentally primed and ready to go full throttle. 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Monkey Butt (Baby) Pants

I’ve been wanting to make some monkey butt pants for Will for a while.  I’ve seen them on cloth diapering message boards, found and downloaded a pattern (in Japanese), have researched them more. 

Last week I couldn’t take it anymore – I’d been researching cute boy clothes – and got the pattern cut out and assembled.  I snagged a few t-shirts at the thrift store and Friday night I was off and running.  I hadn’t sewn much during the week, and I just needed something easy, an instant gratification project.  I’d say it took me as long to cut out the pattern and fabric and find my elastic as it did to sew the pants.  So cute!
These are size 80-90mm (12-24 months).  With this particular pattern you have to add seam allowances.  I used this old t-shirt and have plenty left for a coordinating top or another pair of pants.  I made sure to use the hem of the shirt so I didn’t have to hem the little leg openings.  The waistband is 1” elastic.  Oh, and I made the legs straight instead of slightly flared – they look like skinnies if you want that look!
This is the back side finished.
All sewn together (but the model was long in bed by that time).  
My Saturday morning photo shoot didn’t work so well – he wouldn’t stop to pose!   
**Note – these pictures are in disposable diapers since we were fighting some nasty diaper rash brought on by antibiotics (yay ear infections! – not).   

The back fit great but the front had lots of extra fabric, so I’d alter the pattern if we were a disposables-only household.  For reference, the model is just about to turn a year old, wears 12M clothes (but has short legs), and is 19lbs and change.

My husband thinks they are dumb and doesn’t believe they are all the rage (obviously he doesn’t frequent cloth diaper boards, blogs, or Etsy).  My mom thinks they are adorable. 

I need to bribe the model to wear them again so I can see how they fit now that we’re back to our cloth diapers. 

This is the link to the pattern, but there are no instructions.  There are construction tutorials if you search for monkey butt pants.  But basically you sew the insert into the back side, sew the sides together, then make a casing for an elastic waistband, and hem.  Very doable, and if you reuse old t-shirts or fleeces, very inexpensive. 

Next up (when I get the urge), I’m trying this German pattern (with instructions here – the last several pages are pictures of completed pants).  Children’s size conversion chart here – you’ll need it.  There are lots of possibilities with monkey butt pants – I want to try some fleece ones for winter and maybe try to make some in wovens (with a little extra room since they won’t stretch).    

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Farmer's Wife Friday - 3.15.14

It's another Farmer's Wife Friday.  I did better this week but am in the plodding stage.  I'm not in the first euphoric love but not in the hate stage yet.  I have to force myself to start, but once I do I enjoy the quilting. 

Here are the stats as of today:

  • Bobbins Used in Quilting: I'm currently on #18
  • Hours of Quilting: 27.25 so far
  • Blocks Quilted: 71 (plus three setting triangles)
  • Blocks to Go: 57 (plus setting triangles and border) 
The colors are all whacked, but my camera battery died, so these are from my phone. 



Sunday, March 9, 2014

Sunday Stash

For my recent birthday I received a little money, which I put to good use buying fabric 
(a girl can't have too much!).

Here are my spoils!
6 yards of Lecien Flower Sugar.  I'm going to use this as the background for my Gypsy Kisses quilt.  I've been thinking of doing a quilt along with tutorials, different techniques, etc. beginning next year (I've got to finish this year's projects first).  But I'd love to know if anyone's interested/their thoughts on that idea.
I ordered this Eco Twill in Stone for Sam's Easter suit and some fusible stabilizer for Will's Easter outfit and had to round out my order to get free shipping.  These goodies hopped on in and filled up my cart (Acacia, Bright and Buzzy honeycomb, and Geekly Chic glasses).
Another order had the green ducks from Country Girls, an Avalon charm pack, and that awesome Scrumptious dot.  I think I'm going to use it for the eyes of my Gypsy Kisses quilt.  Now that I have seen it in person, I think I need a bolt of it.
And lastly, I got these.  The Little Kukla dolls tell me they want to be a summer bag(?).  I LOVE the Sweet as Honey prints.  I'd get more of both.  My mom said the floral would make a great dress.  I have to agree - and I think that tiny touch of dark pink/red makes the print.  The Wee Wander - well, I seem to be on a blue kick lately.

Now I have to use these goodies - anyone know where I can get an extra secret two hours in a day?

Linking up to Sunday Stash with Molli Sparkles at A Stitch in Between!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Farmer's Wife Friday - 3.7.14

My second Farmer's Wife Friday update.

I busted tail last weekend and made great progress - from 30 blocks to 54 in a couple of days.  But then I burned out.  I don't have a very ergonomic setup for my machine right now, and all the quilting on the queen/king size quilt made my shoulders and back sore for a few days.  Plus, I've just been tired after work this week, so I've been lazy.

Thursday I managed to quilt one and a half blocks, but any more progress was stifled by Grey's Anatomy (my one TV show I watch).  I'll pick back up this weekend!

On to the stats:
  • Bobbins Used in Quilting: I'm currently on #14
  • Hours of Quilting: 22 so far
  • Blocks Quilted: 55 (plus 1/2)
  • Blocks to Go: 73 (plus the border)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Gypsy Wife QAL: March Blocks

I worked ahead on these – sewing them up in February.  I knew I’d be chained to quilting my Farmer’s Wife quilt in March. 

This month’s blocks were Pershing (main block) and more pinwheels and square within a square blocks (filler blocks).  Alhtough there are 7 blocks, you use some of the pinwheels for the center of the square in a square blocks, so there are really only 5 finished blocks when all is said and done. 

I decided to try and be a good blogger and take more process pictures.  Maybe they’ll help someone, as several of us have realized there aren’t step by step measurements.  That’s fine when your ¼” seams are perfect, but how many of us REALLY sew a perfect scant ¼” seam?  I know I don’t – I do pretty well, but I’m not perfect by any means. 

For that reason, I like to cut and kind of triangle block slightly larger and then trim to the perfect size after piecing.  With a block like Pershing and no step by step measurements, it’s not easy.  What to do? 

The answer lies in the points.  I needed to align on a straight edge and make sure I had my ¼” clearance on either edge of the points (plus a hair) and to ensure they wouldn’t get cut off when adding the next round of triangles and to keep my block square.  And then (of course) some careful sewing to make sure I didn’t cut off those points. 

It worked pretty well.  Then I got to the outermost edge.  There were a few mistakes in piecing this section.  Some stitch ripping.  Trying again, more stitch ripping, and finally a duh moment. 

In the end I persevered. 

Me likey. 

On to the filler blocks.  One economy block.

Those pinwheels were tiny!  I dug in my scrap jars for a few 2.5” squares to round out my block selections – I’m pretty sure that’s why I go to the trouble of cutting up my scraps and sorting into jars in the first place – so I can USE them easily. 

I pressed the seams to the side rather than open on these – just to try.  Not sure why I thought that was a good idea on a 2.5” pinwheel!  Lesson learned. 

I love the leopard print.  I need to use animal prints more. 

And now, back to Farmer’s Wife quilting.  54 blocks done, 74 blocks and a feather border to go . . .

For the full QAL schedule go here.

Awesome Flickr group with lots of gorgeous blockshere
The QAL blog hop schedule with links to pretty blocks in blog form
(and prizes for those who link up their blocks) – here



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