Saturday, August 30, 2008

July '08 Thangles Buck-a-Block

I'm a little late posting July's blocks. Actually they were done a few weeks ago, but I just plain forgot to post them until I was about to do the August blocks. My LQS (Local Quilt Shop) does the Buck-a-Block from July to June each year, and in two alternate colorways.

Last year I only did one colorway (the Batiks -- still a Work in Progress, but you can see it in the Labels). This year I decided to do both, I wish I would have done both last year as well, but I won't make that mistake this year.

Two colorways:

  1. Brights

  2. Blue, White and Yellow

Friday, August 29, 2008

UFOM #6 - The Really Big Kaleidescope Quilt

My last and final Miracle UFO! This was going to be a King Size Kaleidescope quilt. All done in purple. In retrospect, I find the color selection a bit dark. It's kind of funny how our tastes change over the years.

Everything was included here. All my notes, lots of fabric, Several finished squares, many more almost finished squares -- and even a marking pen.

Everything but the required ruler! The really irritating thing about that is that I remember seeing that ruler when we were moving. I remember thinking that it was out of place and ought to be with all my other sewing supplies. Then I got distracted, I didn't go investigate what the movers were doing. To this day I wonder if I would have stopped right then, would I have been able to salvage all my sewing supplies? All that fabric? All that work?

Now that ruler is gone, and so is everything else. Well, almost everything. Everything except my 6 little miracles!
Here I've placed the finished squares together on the floor (my design wall is already covered with my "real" work -- ha ha) I think it will look nice when it's all done. If I can find a ruler replacement, I might even make it a King size! Probably not though. We'll see!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

UFOM #5 - Woodsy Center

This block I was making for someone I worked with, back when I was expecting my first child (who is 11 now). She and I were quite friendly.

Then one day, she just didn't come in to work. When I inquired about her, they said she called in to quit with no notice and said she was moving to Georgia -- Atlanta I think.

So there this sat, for ages. Of all the projects I had sitting in my sewing room, if I had to choose among any of them, I must say, this would be the very last one I would want saved. It's very much not my style.

In this close up you can see my four-patch is a bit wonky! Probably better I didn't give it out as a gift I suppose! Maybe I can find a center medallion swap or something, although, now that I've highlighted my wonky squares, perhaps I should rethink that!

Well, this one is a puzzler. I've promised myself to finish all my UFOMs. Problem is, what to do? What to do?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Blocks in the Mail!

SockMonkey Princess (My swap partner at Swap-Bot) just sent me 3 blocks in the mail. Wasn't that nice of her!

They are such lovely blocks too. She was only obligated to send me 1 block, but she went and sent me three!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

UFOM #4 - Almost, Almost Done Christmas Wallhanging

This one is nearly done. And I remember very clearly why I didn't finish it. I couldn't decide what to put in the green panel. If you look closely, I've used scrap from my very first quilt (UFOM #1) for two of the trees.

That and I didn't have enough buttons to finish the trees. Now that is a silly reason, I know, especially because you can pick up buttons so easily!

I remember wanting not only the skin color of the angels to be varied, but the shading on their wings. So I took the doily, and tea-stained them in different shades. Then I was disappointed because I thought the stained wings didn't show up quite as well from the background. It doesn't bother me so much now. Maybe that was the real reason why I didn't finish it.

Now, what to put in that green panel. Mmmmmmm....

Monday, August 25, 2008

UFOM #3 - Flannel Crazy Quilt

It seems that all my 'miracle' finds have been from really early in my quilting career.

This one is a crazy quilt made entirely from flannels. I have all the directions and some templates that I made out of plastic. The directions say you should be a confident beginner or better.

I have a lot of fabric here that is uncut. It seems I wanted it to look very scrappy and not at all patterned, because I have only used the templates that I created on some of the "squares" and on many I just stitched pieces together.

I use the word squares very loosely, as none are in an actual square shape, and the sizes are somewhat nebulous. Aside from the fabric and templates, I do have several "squares" finished, and it looks like I was going for a Queen size quilt.

I also have two ziploc bags stuffed full of more fabric that has been cut according to the templates -- I guess at some point I was planning on using the templates, but then gave up(?) Who knows!

All in all, I think I'll like having this quilt around once it's done (finally) because Flannel should be very cozy. I still haven't acclimated to the cooler climate here.

I love the green, green, green of it all, the beautiful mountains and being surrounded with so much water. But it seems, after two years, I am still constantly cold!

Maybe I'll use wool batting on this one~!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

UFOM #2 - Yes, its a QUILLOW!

Right out of another one of THOSE bags! Yes, you've haven't heard about quillows in years! In fact, I think they were all the rage the year I started quilting and then immediately died out.

Well, I'm not sure about that. But I had forgotten I ahd even attempted to make one. And from the amount of fabric I have, I think I wanted to make FOUR!

These fabrics aren't really my style, and I don't think they ever were. But they are nice and I know that my daughters will love them. So, I figure I'll make two for my daughters and finish the other two off for a Linus Project quilt.

The only problem is that I don't know how to make a quillow. It seems I took a class at a quilt shop in a town I haven't lived in for more than 15 years! Well, I didn't get very far in the class because I've not even cut the fabric. I only have one pillow panel with an added ruffle.

The sheet I saved from the class only gives yardage requirements, but directions. Why on earth would I save yardage requirements but not the directions. I must have thought the whole thing so easy that I wouldn't need directions.

Either that, or I thought it too hard and I would never attempt to make them. I have no idea, but there is PLENTY of fabric here!

Anyone out that know of a good quillow pattern??

Saturday, August 23, 2008

UFOM #1 - My First Quilt

I've decided to call these UFOMs -- the M is for Miracle. (or You-Foms).

So my first find was this finished quilt top. It's the very first quilt I ever made. I was so very proud of it and I remember how much I loved the fabrics I chose. To this day I have a weakness for tree quilts and leafy fabric prints.

But the funny thing about this quilt is that I had sent it over to a long-armer (couldn't imagine myself doing the quilting in those days -- or even what a long-arm quilter was!)

Anyhow, the poor lady took one look at my quilt and sent it back! Said she couldn't do my quilt. I must have been her worst nightmare as a client (except that I was pleasant I'm sure)...

She had finished the edges on her serger for me and I just folded it up and dropped it into a bag. I haven't looked at it since.

It has some damaged bits, and if you look close you will see that the bag I kept it in has some mold on it -- never very good for a quilt.

Well I'm going to finish it up on my Pfaff machine. I grabbed some leftover novelty fabric of christmas pigs (Olivia if you have children) and it'll make a great lap quilt in winter for when the kids are watching t.v.

So that's it - My first UFOM is my first quilt! Ironic....

Friday, August 22, 2008

A Tragic Tale of UFOs

This tale starts about 3 years ago, when I moved household, cats, hamsters and kids across several states to the Pacific Northwest. When it came time to move, I did a little prep work and left most of the heavy lifting to the moving company.

By prep work, I mean, I kept out certain things necessary for keeping a family of five (+ pets) clothed and fairly comfortable for the stretch of time between our belongings leaving one state and arriving at another, in a fairly nebulous un-guaranteed amount of time. The only other thing I did, was to take all my stash, my UFOs and my sewing/quilting supplies and put them into ‘Space Bags’.

You see, all my ‘stuff’ was mostly organized and filed a bit recklessly in a loose translation of origin. And by that I mean, most projects and UFOs in their various states were kept in a few bags from the original quilt shop or fabric store where the supplies were first purchased and mostly kept close to one another.

Several that had reached ‘maturity’ in their UFO-ness were actually upgraded to a special bag that had nothing to do with Quilting and everything to do with the fact that I had almost 100 of these bags in my garage.

So when it came time to prepare for the movers I put all my bags of ‘Stuff’ into those space bags made infamous on infomercials everywhere! I didn’t want those guys to mistake my numerous bags of ‘Stuff’ for worthless junk!

When we arrived a week later and all our belongings showed up a week after that, we were anxious to get started unpacking and the moving company was anxious for us to sign on the dotted line.

They messed a LOT of stuff up. We had damage to most of our furniture; much of it couldn’t be salvaged! So finally after going through numerous appointments and many claims we signed off on the move after about two weeks.

Only problem: in that span of time, I had barely been able to register my kids in school, let alone unpack everything….

You might know where this is going. Yes, it’s true. The entire contents of my Stash – including more than 30 UFOs (some completed tops just waiting for quilting) were ALL GONE! ZIPPO!

Gone without a Trace!!

I was so distraught, I was physically ill. For months after I discovered the loss, just thinking about it left me nauseous and weepy.

It’s been 3 years now and I still get upset if I think about it too long...

I had a Burgoyne Surrounded in deep greens and burgundy, all in civil-war repro fabrics, there was another – it was cats made of brightly colored flower prints, the background was solid black and the cats really stood out. It was for my daughter, I was just deciding on binding (should I go with patchy flower prints, or with black? I was leaning towards the brights.)

But that’s all gone now.

Why do I bring this all up now you might ask. Well, a miracle happened at our house. A small miracle, but a miracle none-the-less!

Six ‘bags of stuff’ all stuffed into one Space bag, turned up in our garage! It’s interesting because it’s a small amount of scraps, but the 6 UFOs are from my very earliest of quilting. None of them were very important to me at the time, but it’s something, and I'm thankful for it!

So I’m taking a picture of each one, (you’ll see 1 a day over the next 6 days) and documenting their progress! It will be my winter “project” to finish each and every one! There is one I REALLY don’t care for anymore, and I don’t know what to do with it, but I will do SOMETHING with it!

And NEVER in my entire life will I EVER let my stack of UFO’s get to be more than 10! I promise my self!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

New Stichin' Post Challenge Block

So here’s the situation, The Stichin' Post (Quilt Shop in Oregon) has a block challenge every month. They provide the focus fabric and a pattern. We (whomever has signed up that is) provide the complementary fabrics and stitch up the block.

We send in our individual blocks and the shop draws from every twenty blocks. The winner gets to keep all twenty of the blocks. It's a sweepstakes of sorts. So you could go a long time and never win. It's always been fun, and I've never won.

But this month… Boo Hoo! I'm so sad to send this one in! When the challenge came in the mail I thought it would be such fun because I really love leafy print fabrics. (They provided me with the orange focus fabric and the pattern). You might recognize the pattern, it’s Road to California.

I had such fun picking out the coordinating fabrics. Finally I decided on a fabric from my stash. It's one that I've been saving for my Summer Trees quilt. I am going to do a leaf and/or tree quilt for every season.

The block came out lovely, just beautiful! I was so excited as I admired it, only to realize that now I must send it away! Mail it off to the challenge!!!

This time I was REALLY tempted not to send in my block! I wanna keep it!! (This is where I feel sorry for me).

Of course, I am going to do the right thing and send it off. I know what you're thinking. You are thinking: "Well, you better send it off because we've all been burned by flakers and you better not be one of them!"

Ok, I know. I better send it off today, and stop being a sniveling baby about it all!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Postage Stamp Quilt

I'm trying to decide on a design for my Postage Stamp Quilt. I've decided to do large color blocks because I want to actually get it done sometime in the near future (of course that's all relative isn't it).

Here are my 3 PS (For Postage Stamp) designs:

PS Rainbow:

This is a so-sew simple pattern but I am not sure what to do with the border. Mmmmm.... any thoughts?

And here is my second idea: PS Braid

I don't think the braid pattern comes out well enough though. Kinda difficult when I am trying to make my pattern from color blocks. (To make it quicker in the construction)

And Finally this last one is a bit bigger and I called it: PS I Love you! Great name huh! :-)

I've set up a survey-style vote on my Right-Hand-Navigation bar. (--->)

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Woo Hoo, my first Swappie squares have arrived!

I'm so very excited! I was a bit nervous, as I'm very new to the whole swappie thing. But I started easy with a basic 9-patch swap, and look what came in the mail today! Oh, lucky me.

Crystal, my very first swap partner, is an old-hand at it though and sent me a whole bunch of squares to get me caught up.

It's so very fun to get squares in the mail!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Latest Swap Square

Here is the latest square I did for a Swap on Swap-bot. I signed up for a few swaps, it's my first with Swap-bot and I've sent out a few. I haven't received any yet, but I'll post them when I do.

This is one I did for a swap that called for a 12" pieced square. The only condition is that it couldn't be a basic 9-patch. I should have ironed before I took the picture. Squares always look nicer when pressed.

I used the fabrics I'm using for my Botanical Quilt (one of my UFOs). I like the fabric. I hope my 'swapee' does too.

Keep Quiltin'

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Pacific Northwest Quiltfest

This weekend was the Pacific Northwest Quiltfest. It is a wonderful show put on by the Association of Pacific Northwest Quilters. It was held this year in Seattle washington. It was, of course, a wonderful show.

I had the great fortune to listen to Jane Moxey talk about her career as a Quilt show producer. She was brilliant and funny, it's a shame that most people don't know who she is or all the hard work she puts into her work. She does the ‘At Home with the Experts’ Series from P & T Publishing.

The quilts were fabulous and I've highlighted a few here. The pictures are small but click on them to get a better view. I’ve highlighted only a few, including my children’s favorites.

First Place for Handiwork

Summer Afternoon by Connie Ayers from Belfair, WA

It’s hard to see with my snapshots, but the hand stitching on this quilt is phenomenal!

Best of Show

Poppy Soliloquy by Sandra Leichner

This beautiful quilt took best of show. My photography doesn’t do it justice. This is truly a masterpiece of skill and artistry

Kayleigh’s Favorite

Emily’s Crystal Iris Garden by Dian L. Keepers and Jessica Schick from Centralia, WA

This quilt really sparkles, it has many crystals throughout.

Cricket’s Pick

Incoming Wizardry by Judy Eselius from Lake Oswego, OR

We’re currently reading the Harry Potter series… what more can you say!

Cameron’s Choice

Grandmother’s Garden Swing by Janet M Fogg from Lake Oswego, OR

Janet Fogg took Best of Show at the last conference two years ago. Cameron loved the quilted in letters and the Big ‘G’