Saturday, September 22, 2012

My last!

Most new quilters document their firsts. Today, I'm documenting a last.

This is the last time I will quilt in concentric squares. I will not squeeze, push, pull, tug a quilt of any size thru the throat of my machine 2 complete turn per square EVER AGAIN.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go research free motion quilting feet for my machine since there just has to be a better way.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

What I'm working on

I haven't gotten as much sewing done as usual this week, mainly because my friend and I went fabric shopping on Monday, which is normally my biggest sewing day. We met at Panera for breakfast after dropping our kids off at school and hit several stores. I was mostly there for fun, as I do not need to be buying any more fabric, but I did score some Denise Schmidt at Joann's - in the clearance rack no less!

The one on the left is actually a Legacy Studios Joann print. Yeah, no obvious color copying there...

Speaking of color matching, though, I pieced the back for the owl quilt yesterday:

I bought the owl fabrics for the top a couple of months ago when they first came out at Joanns. I got the dots for the backing at Hobby Lobby and I know for sure they have been there since before I started quilting, so over a year & a half ago. Crazy how well they match, isn't it? I don't even consider that a common color combination.

My biggest accomplishment this week was getting Aster Manor to a flimsy. I'm on the fence about borders, mainly because the prints are no longer available, so it would have to either be some type patchwork, scrappy border, or I'd have to find solids that matched. I just don't know - I may leave it like it is.

I also haven't decided whether I'm keeping or selling this one. I love the pattern, but I liked it so much better in Tracy's quilt, with more solids and lots of contrast in the colors. I can always make it again, right?

Go see what everyone else is doing this week at Freshly Pieced.

Edited to add: Also linking to Quilt Story, another great source of current project inspiration.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Fresh from the dryer

I finished my Granny Squares quilt on Monday:

I quilted straight lines in both directions, 3 in each block. So, it's pretty loosely quilted. Nice and soft.

I used a re-purposed sheet for the back:

Also nice and soft. And I bound it with Kona navy.

This was my first quilt using pre-washed fabrics, so I decided to pre-wash the batting as well. That worked beautifully. I soaked it in the washer, put it thru the spin cycle and just put it in the dryer. I don't mind telling you that it made me nervous. But it held up great, seemed softer for the pre-wash, and I sure didn't mind smelling it the whole time I was quilting & binding:)

I'm still really loving this pattern, but next time I will make the center square a 3rd fabric instead of just using 2 fabrics per block. Give it more dimension. The only regret I have on this quilt is that I didn't use setting blocks in the sashing. Some blocks are slightly off as a result, luckily only one bad enough to really notice. Setting blocks would have insured better alignment.

This quilt is for a friend undergoing radiation - I understand that makes you very tired. I'll be calling his wife today to see when I can deliver it. I hope it brings him some comfort in the upcoming weeks.

Monday, September 10, 2012

This is what I'm talking about!

I have pretty strong perfectionistic tendencies, so usually at the end of a project I'm focused on one seam, or one corner, but not this time! I'm not sure I've ever been happier with a finished project.

It's not because it's perfect - turning the corner with the gusset just wasn't the easiest thing I've ever done. Maybe it's just so darn cute that it doesn't have to be perfect.

My very favorite image in all the line. Exactly what is she planning to do with that hammer - you just have to ask yourself.

And despite the doll, this one just doesn't look too playful, does she?

I love the way the strap turned out.

Joanna from Fig Tree described the starch applique method that I used for all my recent projects with straps, and I have to say they turned out nice and crisp.

Are you thinking what I'm thinking? This just has to have a matching wallet!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What's under my machine

I bet you forgot about my granny squares quilt, didn't you? I haven't done anything with it in a very long time. Quilters ADD strikes again.

But I got some bad news about a friend last week. He has prostrate cancer and is undergoing 7 weeks of radiation. His wife tells me the radiation wipes him out and he needs a lot of naps. I figured he needed something to nap under, so I got busy.

I assembled the top & basted it Sunday, and this week I'm trying to get it quilted in my snippets of free time after work each day.

Here's a pic of the top, prior to basting.

 I do love the top, and since I have plenty of the fabrics left, I can totally see me doing another. 

Linking up to Freshly Pieced. Lots of good stuff on there already today - go check it out.