Thursday, September 27, 2012

Shower curtain finished

A while ago Rachel from Stitched in Color made a shower curtain.  I thought it was a cool idea, but had no good reason to make one.  But then we moved into a new house with a missing shower curtain.  (But the tub does have a lot of baby toys that I wanted to hide!)

I really like how it turned out, although it wasn't quite what I was expecting.  I had a small fiasco getting enough of the light brown fabric and not dying it while prewashing, so I ended up with two stripes on the bottom instead of one or zero.  (I was going back and forth on how many I wanted.)  The colors are also a little bit darker than what I was hoping for.  They still go very well with the room, but not quite as well with the towels.

The top is a disappearing nine patch.  It was my first time making button holes and they were easier than I expected.  On another note, I was disappointed in the selection of shower curtain hangers at the store.  I wanted some that clasped together so they wouldn't fall off, and it was the ones that I ended up with or the "ugly" clear ones.  All the fun designs were in the non-clasping style.

This is from inside.  I think it looks pretty cool.

Linking up with TNT Thursday, LAFF, TGIFF, Whoop-whoop Friday, and Crazy Mom Quilts.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

WIP Wednesday: starts

I love the end of the month.  I've usually finished my top three goals for the month and can work on whatever I want...and I seem to flit from thing to thing.  (I like the beginning of the month too as I'm fired up to work on my new goals.)  This past week I've managed to start several projects.

1) A duvet cover for my parents.

2) A baby blanket/pattern review.  I was going to mainly work on this until I ran out of one color of fabric.  I got more of it, but now it needs to be washed.

3) Sewing the I-spy quilt.  (The one bee piece doesn't get sewn to any other novelty fabrics yet, so I thought I'd include it in the picture so it didn't feel left out.)

Linking up with WIP Wednesday and From Blank Pages.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Let's Get Aquainted Blog Hop

I have long legs.

It means that I'm often letting down the hem of pants so they fit better.  I finally asked for a sewing machine to help me with this task, because I wasn't doing a very good job.  Then I made a table cloth for our long table.  It was I decided to make a quilt for our bed.  It was enjoyable enough to make another.  I thought about stopping at this point, but I happened upon the blogging community and haven't looked back since. 

Here are the things I've finished this year.
Upper left: Window Boxes.  Upper middle: quilting.  Upper right: November Stars
Middle: Tetris
Lower left: Baby quilt.  Lower middle: locked hearts (in progress).  Lower right: Don't Touch Me
A few more (random) things about me:
*I have my masters degree in mechanical engineering but am currently a stay-at-home mom.
*I'm a Christian.  My favorite verse is from Philippians - "Rejoice in the Lord always; I will say it again, Rejoice!"
*I really like to be organized, although my sewing area doesn't portray that very well.
*I like to read, play board games, video games, and Frisbee.  (The current video game is mine craft.  I'm breeding bees while my husband does all the hard work to make our base usable.)

Here are some of the standard Q&A from Beth.
*How long have you been quilting?  About three years.
*Favorite quilting tip(s)?  Listen to your sewing machine
*Favorite blogging tip(s)?  Put a link at the top to show your finishes.  (Also, I really like it when I can read the whole post in Google reader.)
*Favorite fabric (or wish list fabric)?  Bright solids at the moment.
*Book you are currently reading?  I'm reading "Magician: Master" and the Little House on the Prairie series.
*Favorite quilting tool?  The rotary cutter.  I cut my first quilt out with a scissors because I didn't want to invest much if I didn't enjoy it and it took so long. 
*Favorite music to listen to while quilting?  Actually, I quilt by the computer so I usually have Netflix playing.
* Binding - by hand or by machine?  Machine.  I did a doll quilt by hand and it was not pretty.

I have a reversible coaster tutorial for today.

Total fabric requirements:  13" x 4.5" in three different colors

Cut the following from each of three different fabrics:
*6 of  4.5" x 1.5" strips
*4 of  4.5" x 1" strips

Sew them together using a 1/4 seam so that you have every color combination as shown in the picture.  (The picture is organized by middle stripe.  The left two have a light purple middle stripe, the ones in the middle have a dark purple, and the ones on the right have a white stripe.)

I finished my coasters using a similar method to the tutorial from Throw a Wrench in the Works.  Put two blocks right sides together.  (I put all the blocks with the same middle stripe together as shown above.)  Put a piece of batting the same size as the coasters (4.5"x 4.5") on one side.  Sew a 1/4 seam around the outside, leaving a 2" hole in the center of one side for turning it right-side out. Before I turned it right-side out, I trimmed the corners to reduce some of the bulk.  I then did a small topstich around the outside and was done!

 Thanks again to Beth for hosting this blog hop!
 Plum and June
Make sure to visit the others this week too!  Amanda from Material Girl Quilts today and Vicky from Vicky K Creating and Francine from Mocha Wild Child on Thursday. 

Saturday, September 22, 2012


I finally managed to cut out all the pieces for the I-spy/matching/maze quilt that I'm putting together.

Here is the layout...there are two of each fabric, and I tried to fussy cut them exactly the same for the matching part.
The layout took a bit to get just right.  I had cut out way too many pieces, and I actually had a hard time telling those pieces that they couldn't be in the front.  I had spent the time cutting them out ever so carefully.  Oh well, many of them will probably end up in the back.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Stash Play

I thought I'd join Quilt Matters Stash Play today.  I used a picture that I had taken several years ago on a beach in Florida along with Play Crafts palette builder.  I also decided that I wanted to choose fabrics from what I had on hand - trying to find fabric online seemed overwhelming with all the possibilities.

 I don't really have a lot of fabric, so that added to part of the challenge for me.  But here's what I came up with...

Light brown - slightly darkened French General for Moda #13529.  The color catcher didn't work as well as it could have.  I really like the new color though.
Marbled medium brown  - Primative Gatherings Moda #1040
Dark brown -  There are small leaves on this one - Alliance for Moda, Pattern # 11056
Blue grey - unknown
Light grey - Kona (I don't know the actual color)

I also tried to find a dark blue, but all the dark blues that I had were too bright.

I know this is a different type of post than what I normally put up, but I had a lot of fun looking through my fabrics trying to figure out what might work. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

Behind the Seams - ugliest fabric

Welcome back to Behind the Seams!

First off, thanks to everyone that linked up this past month about a mistake that you've made.  While I hate making mistakes, it's also interesting to see how many different types of mistakes were made.  If you haven't checked them out, please do!

This month's topic comes from Corina...what is your ugliest fabric?

I had to think about this one a bit.  I usually buy fabric for a specific quilt and don't have any from a long time ago that shows how my tastes have changed.  But as I was looking through my fabric I found a good one.

Sheep with baby bottles.  I don't like those sheep at all.  I think they seem a little...tacky.  I got the cloth because there are also sheep without baby bottles and ducks and frogs.  I fussy-cut out the parts that I like for an I-spy quilt, but since I don't get rid of scraps I still have sheep with baby bottles.

So, what is your ugliest fabric?  Have you used it?  Where did you get it?

Here are the linky party rules:
1) The linky part will be open for a year.  I'd like to encourage you to post within the first month, as I'll be reminding people to go back and look at the posts, but it isn't required.
2) I'll be announcing the topic and opening the party on the 15th of each month.
3) Feel free to link posts that you've written in the past.
4) Please link back to this blog.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


As a reward for finishing my Tetris quilt, I got this great package in the mail.

Ok, they really had nothing to do with each other.  It just felt like they did.  I won the giveaway from Margret at The Average Quilter and it was so fun to open the box and explore what was inside! 

Thanks again to Margret.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Finished Tetris!

My quilt played video games all day.

So I kicked it outside to play.  Of course, it brought out a video game book to read.

But the quilt got bored reading it and so begrudinly let me do a photo shoot with it.


Front close up.  I did a double echo around all the pieces and FMQ squares and rectangles on the black part outside border.  I left the grey box and small border pieces unquilted.

Back.  I really like how the quilting came through.  I was a little worried that it would be a poor match for the back or wouldn't be square.  But it matched well and is square.  I worked really hard to get everything lined up, so I feel pretty proud of myself for that.  (The yellow pieces don't look great because of the wind.  It is an "organic" echo, but looks better than the picture portrays.)

(Here's a closeup of the back.)

Then the quilt wanted to go back inside, but I said it needed to spend a little more time outside.  It tried to climb a tree, but it turns out that quilts aren't very good at climbing.

It wanted to go swimming, but I said no because it didn't have a swimsuit.  It turned its back on me.

I finally relented and let it go back inside, where the first thing it did was go back to the video games.

Thanks to Melissa at Happy Quilting for hosting this QAL!  It was my first one and I loved it.

Linking up with Freemotion By The River, Quilt Story, Whoop-whoop Friday, TGIFF, Sew & Tell, LAFF, Plum and June, and Sew Modern Monday

Thursday, September 6, 2012


Problems.  Ugg.  Today I'm describing two that I've had in the last 24 hours.

1) The heart block.  I'm halfway through making these and still don't have the paper piecing template correct.  Most of them I've just fudged and deemed the corners close enough.  But with my latest change I managed to make the bottom points off by about 3/8"'s really obvious when looking at it.  (I put it in a red box below.)  I'm ok with trial and error, but I don't know exactly what my problem is and I get so excited for each new revision only to have it let me down. 

2) I didn't cut a long enough piece of batting for my Tetris quilt.  I was looking at it this morning coming off the rollers and realized I was about 5" short.  How in the world did that happen?!?  After contemplating that for a bit I started coming up with ideas on how to fix it...take the whole quilt off (yuck), hand sew batting on (I'm terrible at hand sewing), put my other machine on the back table and work it across (maybe), or just put another piece of batting in and hope for the best (sounds good in theory).  None of these sounded great, so I went with the most feasible...put my other machine on the back and walk it across.
I didn't have enough batting left to roll it over to the table, so I also had to get a box.  In the end, this was a really good option.  The box slid well and I had enough slack in the batting that I could do quite a bit without having the move the machine.  Although I wouldn't recommend cutting your batting too short, I would recommend this method if it does happen to you.  This also had the added bonus of letting me re-pin the top as it was getting wonky on one side.  I'm not sure if it helped yet or not.  The whole process only took a little over an hour, so it was annoying but not really a huge deal.  Hurray?

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Tetris, giveaway

First of all, thanks to everyone that entered my giveaway!  The random number generator chose RobbieJoy and Bethstrand.  I'm excited to work on their quilts!  Also, thank you for making my husband feel good.  :)  He really is a great guy, but he also really enjoyed reading all your comments.

Secondly...I'm quilting the Tetris quilt!  I need to get three rows done per day to hopefully finish on time.  I came into today a half row behind, but I'll be ending the day on pace or maybe a little ahead.  We'll see how the rest of the night goes. 

I'm doing a double echo in a coordinating color thread for each piece.  Let's just say I'll be really good at starting thread by the time this is done.  I've been enjoying watching it come over the take-up rail as all you see right now are colorful thread on black fabric.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

August accomplishments, Sept goals

Here's how August went.  (P.S.  I love lists.  They make me happy.)

My top three goals.
1. Stay up-to-date with the Tetris blocks.  Done!  I'm now in the process of putting the pieces on the quilting frame.

2. Finish the coasters.  So...I had been planning on doing the green coasters, only to discover a fatal design flaw.  Then I started some purple ones, and didn't quite finish them on purpose.  So I'm going to say that my goal was reached, even though it wasn't as expected.

3. Practice with the quilter. Done!

And the other things on my list:
4. work on the heart quilt.   Progress!  I'm now on the Halloween hearts.  I'm working on 11/ half-way done!

5. Make a pattern for the heart block.  I'm still trying to get the kinks worked out of the design. It's taking longer than imagined.  Hopefully by the 21st block I'll get it figured out.
6. work on the I-spy quilt.  No progress.
7. Come up with a design for the fabric I won.  I realized the purple fabric was an exact match for the office walls.  So I'm going to make a wall hanging and have narrowed it down to two design ideas.
8. Quilt my MILs quilt.  Done!  I goofed a little bit on the border so it doesn't go around in a loop but instead has a starting and stopping point.  Oh well.  I like how the seaweed matches the fabric.  (That's why I originally came up with that quilting design.)

9.  Shower curtain.  The fabric that I needed finally came in!  It's washed and ready to go.
Addition #1.  cloth book:  I got some small panels at the quilt show.  I've been using it as a leader/ender project.
Addition #2.  Scrap quilt: Once I get a few more scraps cut I'm planning on using this as a leader/ender project.  It has a very low priority.

For September...

My top three goals:
1. Quilt the Tetris quilt (hopefully finish by Sept 10).
2. Do "Let's Get Acquainted" Blog post and tutorial (Sept 25)
3. Finish the shower curtain.

The other things I have in the back of my mind:
4. work on the heart quilt.
5. Make a pattern for the heart block.
6. Work on the I-spy quilt
7. Make the wall hanging with fabric I won
8. Continue working on cloth book
9. Pretend to work on scrap quilt
10. Work on my parent's duvet cover
11. Quilt quilts for my mother-in-law
12. Quilt quilts for blog hop winners.  (If you're still reading this, you can still enter through Sep 3.)
13. Finish the green coasters.

Linking up with Fresh Sewing Day.  (And a happy welcome to all my new followers that are making me ineligible for the small blog hop!)