Wednesday, July 31, 2013

July accomplishments, August goals

July ended up being a little odd.  I didn't finish my main goal, which I normally can do, but did get several other things done.

1. Finish the T-shirt quilt. Well, I just got the quilting started.  I decided to piece the back, and that took longer than I was expecting.  I also forgot to order the thread in time, so had to wait a day or two to start quilting until that showed up.  This will end up on the list again for August.
2. Make the July Simply Solids block and the tutorial for the August block.  Done!  One bee block already arrived in the mail for me and I'm excited to see the rest.

3. Finish the castle quilts.  Done!  These were almost done in June; I just had to finish tying up some loose ends (literally :) )

4.  Finish countdown and rocket - Done!  But since I finished it tonight, I don't have final pictures yet.  Here's the rocket part.  (And I know the binding is terrible.  I'm not sure what happened at the corners, but didn't care enough to start all over.)

5.  Quilt the fractured quilt. Done, although I haven't posted pictures yet.  I even have the sleeve put on it.  We decided on rearranging our living room a little bit, so I'm waiting until that is all done to officially hang it up.  In the meantime, while I was trying to have a photo shoot my son decided to step on it.  Normally that would be fine, but I may have freaked out a little when he did it on this one.  I don't want to wash it.

10. Pillow for family room. I have four blocks done and almost no scraps left.  The pillow I got is bigger than the scraps so I either need to make more scraps or sash it.  Any ideas?

15. Rocket pattern. I made the rocket after some big design changes as suggested by my tester.  I like the result, so now I just need to get the pattern set up.

August...even though I finished some things on the list, it didn't shrink.  It seems like it is baby season again.  I probably have one good friend per month having a baby.  I don't need to make quilts for all of them, but it means that I have added some more baby quilts to the list.

1. The main goal, for The Lovely Year of Finishes, is to finish the T-shirt quilt.  And actually finish it this month.

I'd also like to try really hard to:
2. Finish the rocket pattern
3. Cut out everything for the one-up quilt.

And the other things that are still on the list, hanging out:
4. make the wall hanging for office.
5. pretend to work on scrap quilt.
6. finish green coasters.
7. Aunt's throw. 
8. Pillow for family room.
9. Jeweled floors.
10. Picture quilt (finish by Christmas).
11. Charmed baby quilt (October)
12. Lost piece (almost whole cloth quilt)
13. Baby girl daisy quilt
14. Surprise mini (Christmas)
15. Baby paper airplane quilt
16. Baby quilt - undecided pattern/colors

Saturday, July 27, 2013

A skinny quilt

It might be a little silly to put such a small quilt on the midarm, but I don't really have another good way of quilting it.  So on it goes!  It's about 5" wide and quilting it is going really quickly.  Probably less time than it took to pin the backing on.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Castle quilt

I quilted another quilt for my mother-in-law.  It is ultimately for my niece (and one for her doll).

Using a variegated pink/purple thread from King Tut, I put Leah Day's Lollipop flowers in the nine-patches.  Don't you love that name for a quilting design?  I probably still need some practice on doubling back on my quilting, but it wasn't too bad, especially if you don't look too closely. :)  The sides received some lollipop vines, inspired by Melissa Corry's sidewalk chalk.

The castle areas received meandering stars.  And the purple corners all received stars.  It seems to be my standard design lately, but stars are so versatile.  I used a light brown Auriful thread for this part.

Finally, here is the doll quilt.  I keep the cord in the picture for a size perspective as the whole thing is about 15" square.  I did the same quilting motifs, although the lollipop flowers didn't have as many leaves on them.

Linking up with Free Motion Friday.

Saturday, July 20, 2013


I finished quilting my Fractured quilt.  I wasn't really planning on quilting it this month, but the quilt I was hoping to have ready was still a long ways off.  I love it!!!

I was thinking something like this would be nice, and then I saw Michèle-Renée's.  She was nice enough to send me a close-up photo of hers I think mine ended up similar.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Simply Solids - July

I finished the block for my July bee.  It feels nice and summery to me.  And, bonus, it was nice and easy to make.

The block is called Square Knot and the tutorial can be found here.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Simply Solids: August tutorial

Next month (August) is my month in the Simply Solids Bee!  I've debated for most of the year as to what I'm going to ask for, but finally chose one.
(This is really only half of the block.)
First of all, various credits...I saw the original inspiration on You Know What I Love?  (You can see the final quilt here.)  She in turn was inspired by the Tumbling Blocks Pillow.

Colors: I'm asking for scrappy blocks.  However, if you could make the strips green I'd prefer that.  If you don't have enough green please use grey (or black or white).  If you don't have enough of any of those colors let me know.  Feel free to make the small colored strips any color you would like.

Final product: I'd like you to send 2x 6 1/2" x 12 1/2" blocks...basically just don't sew the final seam to make it the 12 1/2" square.  I could say that it is because I don't know exactly what layout I want yet, but really it is because I want to be able to move the half blocks around to evenly distribute the colors.

Ok, let's get on with the tutorial.

Step 1: Cut out your green strips.  The strips should be 7" long and 1.75" to 3" wide.  I can't tell you how many you'll need since it will depend on your strip width, but probably 6 to 12 per half block, so 12 to 24 total.  (Note: if you have two strips of the same color but individually they're too short they will still work if they add up to about 8".)

Step 2: Cut your pieces in two.  Make sure to do some angling top to bottom and some bottom to top.  Vary the angle so some are steeper and some are shallower.  Change where you start the cut, although make sure it is at least an inch from the top or bottom.  (Note: if you have the two pieces are mentioned above, overlap them by .5" - 1" and cut so that the cut is only in the overlap part. Discard the two tiny pieces.)

Step 3: Add the color section.  Please made the width about 1.5" and make sure to give yourself some extra on the sides.  Sew the colored strip between the two green pieces.  The first side is easy, but the second side includes a little guess work because you want to try and line up the two strips as much as possible so that it comes out straight.  It will probably not turn out perfectly straight (see step 4).

Step 4: Trim the strip so that it is straight.  As a rule of thumb, if the strip is going to be much less than 1.5" you might want to try and resew the second green piece.

Step 5: Arrange the strips and sew together.  I'd prefer that you try to put all of the colored strips in the top half or center area (see paint diagram below).  Mine ended up a little more center than top, but I still tried to keep all of them somewhat clustered on the lower part of the top half.

Step 6: Trim to 6 1/2" x 12 1/2".  Here are the two that I ended up with...

Questions?  Comments?  Let me know.  I'm excited to see how these turn out!

Monday, July 15, 2013


I've received some mail during the last week.  First up...a thread sample from Glide.  I was really excited to get so much thread,  It's a hard color to actually use to give it a good test.

Lisa from Hilltop House Creative Works sent me this lovely box of goodies (plus some chocolate) for sending her a partially finished pattern.  (I think I got the better end of the deal!)  I've never used zippers before, so I'm especially excited to try them.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Finished quilt

A bit ago my friend used my midarm.  The whole process went pretty well... I think we were both a little nervous, but everything went very well.  She was about to take some pictures of the back and what does my son do?  Sits right down on it and makes himself at home.

After it had been rolled up he tried to take it away for himself.  When that didn't work, he pulled me over to the quilt to take it.  That didn't work either, but at least he's coming to love quilts. :)

Monday, July 1, 2013

June accomplishments, July goals

June was a pretty good month for me, but I don't feel as though I got as much done as I normally did. But it was a fun (and busy) month in other regards.
Anyway, here's the round-up for June:
1. Finish baby quilt from jelly roll.  Done!

2. Piece the T-shirt quilt  Not done.  I still have some of center seams to put together and the borders.

3. June Simply Solids block.  Done!
10. Pillow for family room.  Progress is still being made.

13. Quilt castle quilt  The quilt is finished, although there are still a few threads to hide.  I also have a matching doll quilt that goes with it and that is about half finished.  

15. One-up mushroom I started cutting some of the blocks.
16. Rocket pattern I redid the pattern based on some feedback but need to make it again.

July is looking pretty busy too.  I tried to keep my main three goals reasonable, but am not sure that I did.  Furthermore, I added a lot of things that I want to make.  I figure it's good to have options.

My top goal, for a lovely year of finishes, is to 
1. Finish the T-shirt quilt.  Honestly, I'm not sure I'll be able to get it all done based on July activities.  But I'll try!

I'd also like to try really hard to:
2. Make the July Simply Solids block and the tutorial for the August block. 
3. Finish the castle quilts.

And the other things that are still on the list, hanging out:
4.  Finish countdown and rocket
5.  Quilt the fractured quilt.
6. make the wall hanging for office.
7. pretend to work on scrap quilt.
8. finish green coasters.
9. Aunt's throw. 
10. Pillow for family room.
11. Jeweled floors.
12. Picture quilt (finish by Christmas).

13. Charmed baby quilt (October)
14. One-up mushroom (October)
15. Rocket pattern
16. Lost piece (almost whole cloth quilt)
17. Baby girl daisy quilt
18. Surprise mini (Christmas)