Friday, June 15, 2012

Granny Squares

The title of this post was going to be More Granny Squares, but when I think about it, I don't think I mentioned the original granny squares.

Some of the quilty girls and I got together and decided to do a Granny Square quilt block swap. We're doing 30's prints with kona white (ha ha, I typed konda white). We are each making 24 blocks, which will be three for each person in the swap. I finished mine up at the last retreat, but can't find a picture anywhere. I'll have to take some. In the meantime, enjoy this one of some of the quilty girls.
Ya, and that was before the virgin margaritas!

We're using the strip piece method following the tutorial from I'm a Ginger Monkey. It is pretty slick (to use one of Marion's words).

So here they are, more granny squares and more gingham.
Gingham Granny Squares
Next week I'm off camping with a bunch of teenagers - wish me luck!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Hanging

First of all, I have to share a funny story.  At the last minute, I joined Diego and Josh for an evening bike ride. When we were just about home, they decided to go get a snow cone. I didn't want one (or the extra sugar and calories) so I went home. I plopped down to take a breather and went on FB to see what people were up to.  Then I see this...

...posted 53 seconds earlier!  They were going for a walk and just happened to go by the snow shack. At least her mommy brought her over the next day to see me.

So, yesterday we hung the quilt show.  This is always labor intensive, but so much fun to see it all come together.

decisions to be made

getting everything even

and beautiful quilts to see.
Be sure to stop by if you are in the area and vote for your favorite quilt - it's free:)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Changing

As we get older, we learn things about ourselves.  One thing I've learned is that while I'm relatively good at dealing with changing situations, I love the consistency of my surroundings. In CA a friend of mine would switch all of her furniture around every few months.  Her apartment always looked so cute and it inspired me to go home and do the same. It gave me anxiety. When you come to my house, you will find the my couch in exactly the same place that it was when our family moved in.

Over the years this has transferred over into seasonal decorating, with the exception of Christmas.  (It also may be why I can only wear solid shirts, but that is a story for a different day:). My solution to seasonal decorating is my seasonal quilt rack.
Out with the old April Showers quilt (good for April and May) and on with the new summer quilt.
Summer doesn't officially start until June 20th, but this is more of a "the kids are out of school for the summer" quilt.
I made it way back in 2007, when I first started quilting.  It was one of those "let's try paper piecing" moments.  You know, back when you first started quilting and everything was new and exciting and you were naive to the amount of work involved :) It was also one of the first quilts that I had finished.
One of my favorite things about the seasonal quilts - you don't have to dust them:)

PS: I used these free paper piecing patterns for the frog and the turtle from Paper Panache. Then added borders and sashing that made sense at the time, but I don't remember the exact sizing.  All of the fabric was probably from Joann's because I didn't know about quilt shop quality fabric back then.


Friday, June 8, 2012

Cracker Barrel Run

We've finally gotten out the bikes, dusted them off and have hit the road this summer.  We haven't been very consistent until this week though.
Today is the Cracker Barrel Run, which sounds like a lot more fun than it is - it is fun, but the only thing we do at Cracker Barrel is fill up our water bottles and empty our tanks.
Konda invited someone she met that she thought would be a great fit for us as a bike partner. For some reason I took that to mean chunky.  She's not. In fact she is very thin. Dang, I'm tired of being the fat chick:) I've got to get back on the healthy eating bandwagon.  Part of the trouble is that I don't remember what I was eating during that time.  I went 3 weeks without any beef, chicken or eggs just to get to a healthy place, and I didn't even miss it much.  Now I can't for the life of me figure out what I was eating.

Happy trails to you!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Summer Time Sewing

A couple of weeks ago, I was gifted some a lot of gingham. Maybe a ton and a half!
This is just a small sampling.
With a sewing retreat in my near future, I knew just how to put it to good use - share the love!
I cut a bunch of 10 inch squares from all of the colors - not worrying about matching up the design exactly - and wrapped them up into cute little 24 count bundles. They were well received, even if everyone seemed a little puzzled as to what to do with them.  Marion has already put her's to good use and stopped by to pick up a little more for binding.

I took the leftover blocks that I had and cut a few more to make a 6x6 picnic blanket.
The backing was also a polyester blend that came along with the gifted fabric.
 With all of the polyester, why not stick with it and go with a poly batting?
I spent about 10 episodes of Doctor Who loosely hand quilting the edges and centers of the blocks.

It's perfect for dragging around the park this summer!
Who knew that all of this old gingham sitting around in someone's stash since the 70's would be so much fun! I'm thinking about making a belt with a D ring and attaching it to the end of the quilt - wouldn't it be great to wrap it up sleeping bag style for an easy grab and go?

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Blessing Dress

When little miss was still in her mommy's belly, I knew that I wanted to make her a blessing dress.  I sat in on a class in St. George a couple of years ago and saw some beautiful blessing dresses that the teacher had made.  She gathered vintage fabric, lace and notions and created beautiful dresses.  While I am not a dress maker, and in fact have a love hate (mostly hate) relationship with fabric, I knew that one day when I was old and gray and more experienced in sewing I would make blessing gowns for all of my grandchildren.

Well, as you know my first grandchild arrived years before I ever imagined she would.  While I did turn 40 and have the first of my gray hairs showing up, I am not any more experienced at making dresses.  I didn't want her to miss out on having a blessing dress, so I set to work.

The slip came first because it was just two pieces and didn't have any sleeves to deal with.
For the dress, I bought fabric that all ready had lace and pin tucking on it.  Cheating yes, but when you are a novice, you take what you can get.
Then I through caution to the wind and did a little pin tucking on the bodice myself.  It's really not as hard as you would think it would be.
I did hand stitch the little lace with pearls around the bottom of both the dress and the slip and around the bodice of the dress.

Overall, I was happy with the way it turned out and I only cursed a little when putting in the sleeves in.

I'm not sure if she'll wear the dress for her blessing or the one that her mom wore when she was blessed.  Either way, Avery will have a blessing dress that her grandma made to share with a daughter of her own one day.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

June Bug

Can you believe it's already June?  I can't as you can tell, i missed posting the June block on the first.

The instructions for the June Block of Hello Sun are now available.

Speaking of forgetfulness, we have a couple of give aways!  I never did post a winner for the blocks posted in April and now it is time to randomly select a winner the the blocks submitted in May.  Remember, the blocks are chosen via the random number generator.  

I am very excited to announce that the prizes for both April and May have been provided by Moose on the Porch quilts!  Konda is an amazing pattern designer and has offered her latest books as prizes.

Drum Roll please....

The winner of the April give away is Gail LV! She will be receiving a copy of Simply Charming Modern. 
The winner of this month's give away is budsman! She will be receiving a copy of Simply Charming Mini's - Konda's newest book that just made it's debut at Market.  So new in fact, that I can't find a picture of the cover. You can see a sneak peak in this post on her blog

Both of the books are chalk full of great patterns that can be made from Charm Packs, yardage or scraps. You can find a copy at your local quilt store or directly from Konda.