Sunday, February 7, 2016

February OMG

It's month #2 of One Monthly Goal over at Red Letter Quilts and I'm going small and easy. February always sneaks up on me, being a short month and all! 


I bought this home dec weight fabric before the holidays to make new floor pillows for someone (being vague in case she reads this, as she might not recognize herself!). February is my month to get those pillows made! 

 



Sunday, January 31, 2016

January OMG - Complete!

My One Monthly Goal project this month was to machine quilt this baby quilt. I'm thrilled with how it turned out! This quilting project was also a great example of how 15 minutes here and 15 minutes there can be a productive way to work! 





I knew I wanted to do a crosshatch pattern in the background, but then at the GLMQG meeting last weekend, I was admiring the speaker's vest--it had two different sizes of crosshatching on it. So I borrowed that idea, doing a 1" crosshatch at the top and bottom, and a 2" crosshatch in the middle. 
Like my quilt model? It was too rainy to go outside, so he volunteered to hold it for pictures

I outlined the animals three or four times with free motion quilting, and then ended the crosshatch lines at the outermost outline. 

I love taking texture shots! 

So happy to finally have this quilted! 

Thanks again to Heidi at Red Letter Quilts for organizing OMG for 2016.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Around the Rail Fence

I'm excited to share another quilt I made that has been featured in a magazine. The quilt, which I named "Around the Rail Fence," uses pre-cut 2-1/2" wide strips and then solid yardage and appeared in Fons & Porter's Quilting Quickly magazine. It was super easy (and fun!) to make! 

Here's one of the ways it was photographed in Quilting Quickly: 
Photo courtesy of Fons & Porter's Quilting Quickly January-February 2016 issue
There's another photo as well that is only in the magazine and not online. 
Below are a few photos I took of the quilt after I got it back recently. For those not familiar with the magazine publishing process, there are typically 4-6 months between making a quilt and the magazine appearing on newsstands. That's definitely evident when you consider the magazine photo (fall leaves) versus my photo (snow!).



This past fall we had a gorgeous rock wall put in our backyard to help create a patio and terrace our hilly yard. Based on how this photo turned out, I think you'll be seeing this rock wall frequently as I photograph quilts in coming months! 
I (stupidly) traipsed down the icy stairs that lead from our deck to the bottom of this rock wall to take this photo and wiped out, bouncing down the last three steps on my butt (with camera in hand!).  So please take an extra moment to admire the photo knowing that it was literally a pain in the butt to take--I have the bruise to prove it! 

Back to the quilt: The fabrics used are from Paintbrush Studio's Marblehead Gemstones, Jewels & Quartz collection by Ro Gregg. This line is so rich with color, texture, and depth. And check out that gorgeous teal marble print on the back! Paintbrush Studio calls the 2-1/2" precut strips "Snack Packs." Isn't that a great name? 

This close-up shows off the quilting a bit. My friend and fellow guild member Diane Oakes quilted it for me. I love what she did--a geometric design in the white borders, and a more organic almost paisley design in the Rail Fence blocks in neutral thread. The quilting pops on the white and blends on the colors--perfect!


Here's what the magazine cover looks like:
You can find this issue of Quilting Quickly here.
There's also a free video tutorial for making this quilt. 
You can read more about this quilt on the Inspired by Fabric blog.
Thanks, Fons & Porter, for featuring my quilt! 

Saturday, January 9, 2016

One Monthly Goal: January

I'm so glad to have a monthly goal tracker to hold me accountable for completing something each month. Otherwise, like exercise, it's so easy to push quilting to the side when I'm busy. 

Last year I updated the quilt I made for my first baby's nursery with the intention of turning it into a pattern to sell. Here it is:
See the original post here

At the same time, I used the same pieces to design a second version--a more modern baby quilt. This top has been sitting in my studio since last January. My goal for this January is to quilt it!


Linking up to One Monthly Goal at Red Letter Quilts.



Thursday, January 7, 2016

Shady Directions

I'd like to introduce you to "Shady Directions." I designed this quilt for the winter issue of Modern Patchwork magazine. 

Here's how it was photographed in Modern Patchwork:

I designed the quilt before finding the fabric to use for it--my original plan was to use scraps from dark to light. When I saw the Essentials Gradation collection from Benartex, I knew I'd found an easier (and sleeker) answer. The fabric runs from dark to light in the center and back to dark. So every blue shape you see in the quilt was cut from the same piece of fabric--just cut from strategically valued places! 

I took the quilt outside today to photograph it--the snowy background helps it to pop, as do the vibrant blues and reds!

The quilt itself is easy to assemble--almost like quick corner flying geese--and I really love the sense of movement that the varying shades of each color creates.
I machine quilted it myself--straight lines on the diagonal to go with the pieced arrow designs. After I got it back (right before the holidays), I washed it--I wanted to see the crinkle effect, and you certainly can in this photo!

Here's a close-up of the units as well as the quilting. Love the value changes the fabric creates, as well as the vibrant hues! 


 And speaking of that, let me tell you--I laid out all of the cut pieces into rows to make sure that it truly was going from dark to light--there were many pieces of fabric that looked different depending on where they were placed! One good example of that is the 4th blue from the left above. I guarantee you that if I swapped it with the 5th blue from the left, which in the photo looks darker than #4, they would look "wrong" the other way too. I finally decided to stop making myself crazy and just go with it--the overall effect would be dark to light regardless of whether each individual piece was perfect.


You can find this issue of Modern Patchwork here.
Benartex also featured this quilt and a short interview with me on their blog, Sew in Love with Fabric.

And one last picture, just for fun...before I sent the quilt off for photography, I had to sew a hanging sleeve on the back. I had some "help" while I was working on it--he proclaimed the quilt "modern, yet snuggle-able!"  
:)

Thanks to Modern Patchwork for including my quilt in their winter issue! It's always a thrill to be published!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

ALYOF 2015 Recap

2015 was the third straight year that I participated in A Lovely Year of Finishes, hosted by Melissa of Sew BitterSweet Designs and Shanna of Fiber of All Sorts.

I achieved my goal in 11 out of 12 months this year, though my mosaic looks a bit boring because two different times I had the goal to machine quilt a project one month and then bind it another month. But hey, it's all progress, right?! 

ALYOF isn't continuing on in 2016 and I will definitely miss it--I need accountability to force me to make time for sewing! 

Here is my 2015 mosaic:


Here are the links for my finished projects:

January
Goal
Achieved!

February
Goal
Achieved!

March
Goal
Achieved!

April
Goal
Achieved!

May
Goal
Achieved!

June
Goal
Achieved!

July
Goal
Achieved!

August
Goal
Achieved!

September
Goal
Achieved!

October
Goal
Achieved!

December
Goal
Achieved!


I was happy to hear that another blogger is taking up the monthly goal challenge, since clearly goals that I set only for myself are not enough motivation. I'm popping over to Red Letter Quilts to check out OMG: One Monthly Goal.
And one last big thank you to Melissa and Shanna for all the time and effort they put into ALYOF!

Monday, December 28, 2015

December ALYOF: Stocking Complete!

Woo hoo! I finished my only homemade Christmas gift, which also happened to be my December ALYOF goal, in time! This stocking, for my new nephew, coordinates with his older brother's and his parents' stockings. Here's hoping Santa was good to him!