Tuesday, March 24, 2015

I'm still here!

It's just been one of those months when I feel like I'm two steps behind and every time I take I step forward, I trip and drop everything I have in my hands.  Do you ever feel like that?  LOL

The best part of the month so far was our trip to Florida to see our kids.  Zach lives there and Megan flew in too.  We had lots of fun just hanging out...going to movies, the beach, and of course the trip wouldn't be complete without a trip to Universal Studios to see the new Harry Potter attraction!  

This was the only picture we got of all of us.  :(  Note to self...take more pictures!  Yes...it was packed there!

Remember this quilt from my last post?  The auction took place while I was away and it sold for $470!  I was thrilled and didn't expect it to go for that much.  We also put together a basket with various things to do in Cheyenne (hotel stay, concert tickets, restaurants, etc) and it went for $650!  That really surprised me too!  It's all for a good cause (scholarships for military dependents), so I'm happy!

Since we've been home, I feel like I haven't accomplished anything...but I did put together this little giftie for a swap....another note to self:  Don't sign up for swaps.  LOL  I always put them off until the last minute and then I'm mad at myself for rushing.  Oh well, it's done and in the mail.  BTW...it is a cat themed swap, which is why I caved and joined.  LOL  These, along with a few other goodies, are winging their way all the way to Australia!

This week, I finally had some quality time with my sewing machine and assembled all the "block one" blocks for the Texas Tumbleweeds quilt.  I promised myself I would quit pointing out my errors, so I won't tell you about the big fat boo-boo I made when putting these together and basically had to start the whole thing over.  But yeah, I won't tell you about that.... 

Today, I assembled these cute Bitty Blocks for the Quiltmaker Magazine quilt-along.  They are so cute and finish at 3".  They were a breeze to make...the choosing/cutting of fabric took longer than the sewing!

Ooh...I whipped up this little doll quilt for our great-niece.  Her mom (our niece) has had a doll all her life she called "Mimi."  It's been very well loved and frankly, looks a little worse for the wear and is actually a little scary.  Her husband doesn't want it to come out of the closet.  :)  Well, a few months ago, we found this tiny doll and it looks exactly like Mimi, just mini version of Mimi, so we knew we had to get it for our great niece.  Her birthday (she'll be 2) is coming up and I decided she needed a baby quilt for her new baby.  :)   It measures 10" x 12" and the pink squares are leftover from my Goodnight Irene quilt.

The next couple of weeks will be crazy with family visits and house hunting trips...but it's all good stuff!!  Meanwhile, I'm squeezing in quilting and sewing whenever I can!!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Add this to the list....

 ...the list of quilts I never thought I'd make...a "Jolly Roger" quilt!  The pattern is Simple Sashing & Rectangles, which is free on the All People Quilt website!  I think this is the third time I've made one.  You can see the others HERE and HERE.  I have a hard time picking just three fabrics for a quilt!  I much prefer "scrappy."  These fabrics are probably plan C or D....I kept changing my mind.

...the Jolly Roger is a mascot of sorts here at FE Warren AFB and if you're interested, you can read about the history of it HERE

Every year, the Spouses' group hosts an auction which raises money for scholarships.  This quilt will be donated to the auction. 

 I tried to get a picture in my favorite spot...but the wind would not cooperate!!

While I was there in my favorite spot on base I couldn't resist taking a few pictures of the pronghorn.  I'll never get tired of seeing these guys...so beautiful.  I think they are the prettiest at this time of the year because their coats are thick and full.  They shed in the summer and have really patch-y coats. 

I also finished another pincushion.  This one is from Primitive Gatherings.  I love it!

I think things are getting back to normal mode now that I have these TWO big deadline projects done.  :)  I have a couple more quilts that have deadlines as they are gifts and I need to stay on the ball with them or I'll be working at the last minute again like I did with this one!  LOL

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Monday, March 02, 2015

It's March already!!

I know everyone is saying it...but time is going so fast!!  I can't believe it's March already!  I realized yesterday, we'll be packing our house and preparing to move in less than three months!!  Yikes!!  I have a lot I want/need to accomplish in that time.  <>

I did get a big job checked off my list by the end of last week though.  A little bit before Christmas, I agreed to make TWO quilts out of baby clothes for a customer.  I've made tshirt quilts before and I feel pretty comfortable making them with no major issues.  So I figured, why not?  It would be a little extra money and wouldn't be too difficult, right?  Ha...famous last words!!  This was the most challenging project I think I've ever made and much more time consuming than I ever imagined.  I probably put 30+ hours into EACH of these quilts....really I stopped keeping track because it was too depressing.  LOL

Anyway...they aren't perfect, but they are done and the Momma was happy!!

I used flannel on the back and did the binding on my machine.  Not my preferred method, but I think it's better for this type of quilt. 

The second one.... 


I'm happy they are done and I can move on to other quilt projects!!

 I pulled out a wool project I'd like to finish up and I needed a couple of ideas for shapes and designs.  Pinterest is always good for finding the right thing...I found something I really liked, but it was a dead link...so I resorted to this.  I traced it right off my computer screen.  Oops...I hope that's okay to do!  LOL  I promise I'm not going to market it as my own design...it's just going on my own little project.  :) 
p.s.  Anyone know how to get Sharpie marker spots off your computer screen?  Oops again...LOL

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

9 patches and pincushions

Terry over at Terry's Treasures has once again come up with a fun sew along project...I've participated in the last 2-3 of hers, so might as well stick with it.  I'm no quitter!  :)

This time it's the 9 patch and snowball pattern.  I'm making 6" blocks and pulled out my bin of 2.5" squares.  I looked online for some inspiration...maybe to find a twist on the traditional pattern.  I found somewhere the idea to put a square in the center of the snowball.  Then Terry and her mom came up with the same idea, so I decided to give it a try too!

Here you can see I have four of the snowball blocks made and it made me go "hmmm?"  Not sure I'm completely thrilled with it.  I think I'll make a few without the center square and see which way I like better.

I kind of like how a star pops out from all the snowball corners...do you see it?  I started wondering how it would look if I made all the points one color so the star really popped?  Oh...decisions, decisions!!  On a side note...do you see that really light blue turquoise in the center 9 patch?  Ugh...that was all I could see!!


Here I swapped it out...there, much better.  LOL  I'll use that block on the outer edge somewhere.  :P

I also made two fun pincushions this week.  This Star Penny pincushion came from the Primitive Gatherings booth at Quilt Festival in Houston.  I wanted to buy everything!!  They had so many kits...it was just too tempting!  But I settled for this small kit as a souvenir of such an exciting trip!  I'm not sure if I overfilled this one, but all those little "tongues" kind of stick up in the air instead of laying flat on the table like the picture looks to be.  Mine is more similar to a sea anemone.  LOL  I should have taken a side picture.

I also finally assembled this patriotic star from a kit that was gifted to me a few years back.  The pattern is from Buttermilk Basin...I love her stuff!!  I really enjoyed making these two little kits....they really don't take too much time.  I don't know why I had them sitting around so long!

Hope you all are having a good week and staying warm!  Lots of snow all across the country!  Hurry up Spring!!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle



Friday, February 20, 2015

A February Finish!!

This month is just flying by, isn't it?  Part of me is happy to see the time pass quickly...it means we're closer to spring and personally, it means we're closer to knowing what the future holds for us as a family and where the next adventure will begin.  :)  

At the same time though...I want life to slow down so I can take the time and enjoy each moment.  I know it's up to me to make that happen, but life and all it's busyness sure seems to be the driver at the moment!

I'm still working on a big project for a client...but the end is very near!  By this time next week, I'll be yelling from the rooftops...it's done!!!  yay!!

I did take some time to quilt this beauty!  It's Narragansett Blues from Bonnie Hunter's book "More Adventures with Leaders and Enders."  The picture isn't the best, I was hurrying before the winds picked up.  I just love it with all it's scrappy goodness!

I also love that I cleared out some big chunks of fabric for the back...all of the fabric for the entire quilt came from my stash!  Awesomeness!!

I quilted it with a medium blue thread and one of my favorite designs called "Popcorn."

I also finished up block two of Buttermilk Basin's wool mystery project.  These are quick and fun!  Can't wait to see what March's design will be.

 Another finish for February is the Ornament of the Month.  I thought they were all going to be snowman...I don't know why I thought that...but was pleasantly surprised by this cute little mitten!

And what's Friday with out a little feline fun...Chloe is obsessed with Wonder Clips.  They are perfect size for chewing...but then they pop off and I don't want her to try and swallow it!  LOL  It's become quite the challenge when working on a binding! 

Hope you all have a great weekend!!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle





Monday, February 09, 2015

Bitty Blocks

So...we've already established that I'm having a impossible time resisting all the fun sew-alongs that keep popping up.  When I saw Quiltmaker Magazine's new project, I knew I was in...but I realized I forgot to share this project last month.  It's not too late to join in!

The name of the sew along is "Bitty Blocks"...so cute!  Each month on the first Monday of the month, they will announce a new block that is either 3" or 4".  They'll come together to make a throw size quilt...I think next month we'll hear some ideas for the layout.

January were these cute 3" bowties....perfect way to use leftover scraps and squares!

February was 4" baskets.  I used the EZ Angle ruler for those little 1" half square triangles and they were easy peasy.  :)

They are really promoting this on social media, so if you are on Instagram and want to play along, check out the hashtag #qmbittyblocks.

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle


Wednesday, February 04, 2015

WIP Wednesday

I think all the excitement and activity from the last week and a half has caught up with me and yesterday I just needed to be a hermit.  I ended up in my sewing room almost the entire day!  LOL  I didn't have the TV on or music, or anything.  Just quiet...except for the sound of my sewing machine...
I assembled all the "block one" blocks for the quilt I started at retreat, called "Star Trellis."  I had almost all the units completed by the time I left retreat, so it wasn't too difficult to get them all assembled...and it didn't need a lot of brain power.  There is a second/alternate block that produces a secondary design...I have to say, I like these blocks just like this too!  (and of course, I picked the obligatory quilt inspector photo)

While I was sewing the Star Trellis blocks, I made these 9 patches as leaders and enders...pretty good turnout, if I do say so!  These blocks will be used in a snowball and 9 patch quilt...which is a sew along over at Terry's Treasures.  These 2.5" squares seem HUGE to me...I've been working with smaller squares for quite sometime, and since I haven't used these in a while, I thought it was time to pull them out and give them some attention.  :)


Another sew along I'm joining (have I mentioned I really like sew alongs?  haha), is American Patchwork & Quilting's "Go Four It."  In the current (April) issue, there are three different quilt ideas using 4 patches.  This is the option I'm choosing to do...called Rainbow Rows.

I'm using my stash of 1.5" squares...I sewed all of these while watching Quilt Cam with Bonnie last night!  Woohoo!  I have about 100 made at this point...only about 650 more to go!  LOL  I'm going to have to keep up with cutting more neutral squares.

And as usual...I can't just make a "copy" of the original quilt..I have to put my own twist on it.  In this case, I'm switching the light/dark layout.  The other bonus...another chance to use my stash of 2.5" squares!  My neutrals will make the "rows," instead of the colors making the rows.  Does that make sense?  I'll have to come up with another name rather than Rainbow Rows.

Okay...so some of you asked me to share pics of the fabric that came home with me from retreat and the awesome quilt shops I went to!  Here we go!

I'm always on the lookout for neutrals....and at $5-6/yard, how can I pass them up?  LOL


a few more goodies...look at those blues!  Most of these are for specific projects...


 
And some cute fabrics for a baby quilt...probably will use the Yellow Brick Road pattern with these...


And the bolts!!  The Jo Morton on the bottom was $2.50/yard!  The red was $3/yard...who can pass that up??!!  Believe me, I would have come home with more if they would have fit in my suitcase!  :)

It's snowing today with 4+ inches so far...I think I'm seeing another sewing day today!  

Happy Quilting!

~Michelle