Monday, February 23, 2009

In the Works

My camera is broke so I can't take any pictures right now. I know a post without pictures is bo-ring, so here are some scans to look at.

This is my Project Improv quilt. It is a gift for a friend and he has this fish as a tattoo. I am almost done with all four of the fish for this design, and then it should go quickly as the squares are large. This is way out from what I normally do- there are NO girly colors at all in here, and I don't think I have ever made a square quilt either. Also, I have never made a quilt with wonky blocks. About the only think that I HAVE done before is make large machine applique blocks. So I pushed myself out of my comfort zone here and I am glad I did. I am going to like this quilt more than I originally thought.

This is what I am going to do with the cherry blocks I did not use in Cherry Surprise. I have some black prints with cherries on them for the setting blocks. This one will be much smaller than the first one, so maybe I'll even quilt it someday. HAHA!

The other thing I have been working on is ripping out that quilting in the Blossom quilt. I appreciate the kind comments on that and it helps to know that others go through the same struggles.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Just me and my seamripper

I have been trying to finish a few things before I let myself "play" with my fun wheelies or start anything new. In an effort to reduce my "tops to be quilted pile", I tried to to meander/stipple this couch quilt. I took a machine quilting class several years ago, but had not actually done it yet. I had made this quilt top for our living room and it's pretty small, so I thought it would be a good one to start with. I did not pin or baste it. Instead I tried that spray-basting stuff. Hindsight being 20/20, I can see where I went wrong there. My sister loves it and swears by it. Maybe it would work better if I was not meandering and only using a straight quilting line, like in the ditch or something. For this, however, it did not work. At all. I had huge puckers and folds and I had no choice but to rip it out. So I have been ripping and ripping and ripping. It is not fun. My stitches are so tight and I am afraid I am going to make holes in the fabric, so it's slow going. I sort of want to just hide it away and start on something else, but this quilt matches our living room so I would like to put it on the back of the couch. I have made progress, though, and am more than a third of the way done. Not quite halfway yet, though.
This is really putting a halt to my sewing. I find myself gravitating toward reading or decorating or other things instead of quilting now, since I hate doing things like this. I am a champion procrastinator, and that's really showing right now. My mom said to just put it away and work on something else for now, so that's what I may do. I really should finish my charity blocks for Project Improv, and also work on the fish quilt, but this unfinished, poorly executed project is just sapping my motivation. Do other people feel like this when something doesn't turn out? Or am I just being whiny?

Monday, February 9, 2009

It's here! And I'm the luckiest girl on the Internet!

Look what came today!! Mooch thought I was taking too long!
(He was very interested in this, as was Brady. Well, Brady was just jealous.)
This box was amazing! You cannot imagine the stuff in here! It was like Christmas. This was the first time I have ever won anything on a giveaway and I will be ruined for all future giveaways! Yards and yards of fabric and lots of little goodies. Ok, feast your eyes!
First, some novelty fabrics- cool retro-ey bowling fabric
and a Wizard of Oz fat quarter.
Cute flannels. (I couldn't get a good pic of these for some reason.)
The CUTEST (Summer) quilt, some assembly required.
Look at the cherries! How did she know I love cherries?
Daydreams jellyroll and yardage!!!
(Can you believe someone GAVE this away??)
Another fun bright quilt to be assembled. (I have some polka dots that will go with this!)
Orange and blue batiky brights!
Some calorie free Chocolat! (The best kind in my opinion!)
I eye up this embossed leather-type fabric all the time and never splurge on it.
I'm seeing a purse here!
You all know how I stack my fabric up for pictures.
Not to disappoint:
I used the red and white stripe fabric for a "backdrop" for some of the little goodies:
Fun scissors. Brady is REALLY jealous over these. (I may share.)
A pretty praying Willow angel:
Yarns and ribbons:
Cute buttons and "jewels":
The most darling polka-dot zippered bag full of fun pencils:
A pretty card and a pencil that took me way back! Remember these?? I had these in school! The sections of lead pop out so you can change colors.
And this made me laugh! A set of Dominoes from the BEST CHRISTMAS MOVIE EVER!!
You'll have to check out this post from Summer Sadie's blog. Her husband loves this movie, and she does not. At our house we all love it, so we make sure to watch it every year. Her hubby got this leg lamp and she feels a bit like the mom in the movie about it! I generously offered to take it off her hands, but in the interest of marital peace, she declined, and sent these instead! I got the biggest kick out of them. Paul used to play so we are going to try a game tonight. Fun!
So here is the whole pile! Wow, am I a lucky girl! I am just beaming over here!
(And a certain 5 yr. old is glowering and being very envious.)
Oops! After I put everything back in the box, I found this little bit of eyelet ribbon:
Thank you so much Summer Sadie! You have really made my day! (Week!)

WAITING!!! WAIITING!!!! WAITING!!!! (Not patiently.)

Did everyone get in on the big Stashbuster Giveaway last week, hosted by Katy? Well, I spent a large part of the day entering those contests and browsing blogs. (I was nice- if it was something I couldn't see myself using, I didn't enter and left more room for others. However, that did not leave many out!) My mom had come to visit and she and my husband were kind of laughing at me a little. WELL! I showed them! I won some fabric!

I was lucky too, because I won one of my "top" picks! I am anxiously awaiting this box from Summer Sadie! She loves estate sales and such as much as I do, and also has a pretty good sense of humor. I am thinking my prize will get here in the next couple days, and I am so excited.

Paul has given me a stern talking-to and I am no longer allowed to buy fabric for a while. He says a long time, but that's kind of like a while, right? And I figure that just means I can't buy yardage. Fat quarters are so small that they don't really even count. I guess this means I have to start winning more contests now! (Or- gasp!- even using some of what I have.)

Friday, February 6, 2009

Silly me, of course two kitties can fit in that box!

"Hey, my brother looks comfy in there."

"I can fit, too."

(wiggle, wiggle, wiggle)
"Move over, your head's in my butt!""Sorry, didn't mean to wake you."

I thought this might remind Jackie of someone!

In quilting news, I am working on this fish quilt. It is going to be a gift for a friend. (I was going to say one of Paul's friends, but he is my friend, too!) He has a tattoo of this fish, so I am trying to incorporate it into his quilt. I tried a bunch of different ways of making the fish and finally settled on this giant version using iron-on adhesive and machine zigzag. It was very hard to work with it when it was smaller as the spiny points did not want to stay tacked down.
(I included a toddler in the picture to show how big it is.) It has teeth which I am going to embroider, and I will use some dark and bright green batiks and "guyish" fabric to make the blocks. This is my Project Improv quilt, so I will try to make some kind of block I have never done before, or maybe, no blocks- just use the fat quarters like they are. Still mulling over that one. I have never made a quilt using giant chunks of fabric, and this would be a cool one to try it on. Some of the batiks are so pretty and could definitely stand on their own.
I linked my big cherry quilt finish to Lit and Laundry's Finished for Friday. She hosts this each week so people can motivate themselves to get things done. Her blog always makes me laugh. She has a sharp wit (just like me! Ahahaha!) and I really enjoy all her posts.
My children have informed me that they are "hungry reery bad!" so happy sewing and I am off to dig through my empty cupboards. Does anyone want to go to the grocery store for me?

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Such a good kitty, and so cute in his box.


Look at Mooch this morning! Sitting in that box by the sewing stuff all cute. He is just such a good boy!

Or not.
P.S. Go look at this quilt! I am in love with this blog!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Cherry Surprise!

For the past week I have been "up nort" (that's how we say it here in 'da U.P.) at my parent's house, visiting and quilting. We had lots of fun doing both and I even got to play some Pinochle. Of course, I had to pack before I could leave. Got the important stuff, so we were good to go. I also brought some fabric and my WIPs. Here is the drunkard's path as it is now- it's a top! I couldn't believe it when we measured it- IT WAS SQUARE! Well, it's a rectangle, but I mean it was not all crooked- it was the same size on one side as the other and the top and bottom were the same. I have never made a quilt that came out even before. I almost cried I was so happy- I really am getting better!

Now for the big news! Cherry Surprise is done! Well, the layers are basted and pinned anyway- it still needs to be quilted. I changed the name, too. I was calling it Cherries Jubilant, but now it has a new moniker. Here you can see where the cherry part comes from:
And here is the surprise! This is the back:How awesomely cute is this? I am just bursting at the seams! This quilt ended up being way bigger than I had intended at first- it's 92" x 103", so I guess that makes it Queen size. I had wanted it for a couch throw, but it got bigger and nicer and so now I don't know what I'll do with it. Roll up in it and giggle? Hang it on my living room wall and grin at it? Take a picture of it and put it on a t-shirt that says, "LOOK! I made this!"? Post pictures of it on the Internet shamelessly begging for compliments? Break my arm patting myself on the back? Hm. Not sure. Probably I'll do those last two.