Monday, November 23, 2009

STUD November sent

I was on a roll this month and got my STUD "anything goes" mini-quilt out early, so it's already been received! Here it is in all its scrappy glory.

STUD Nov detail
I made this for Quiltedoma, who seems to share a lot of my tastes in color and fabric (and such excellent taste it is!). The quilt is based on this tutorial by Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts. I'd been wanting to make a mini like that since I first saw her quilt, and this was the perfect chance! I worked really hard to try to not have the pieces on a grid, but I can still sometimes see one. Oh well.

STUD Nov back detail
For the back I used a fantastic large-scale print to really show off all those little quilted squares. The binding is all from my scrap stash, too. You'd think I was able to make a dent in it, but you'd be wrong! It seems those pieces just multiply.

STUD Nov twin
Of course, I had to make one for myself, too. I spent a long time cleaning all the stray threads off both of these, and there are still some unraveling. I don't think this would hold up very well to regular use (unless perhaps the edges were pinked first?), but it's fine on the wall.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Tethered Threads: November

Tethered Threads November blocks
My blocks for the Tethered Threads November block party swap are done and have been received! I was on a roll last Saturday and got them both done. These are for Nicole, who is making the quilt for herself and just requested blocks that reflect our style.

Tethered Threads Nov 1
The thing is, I'm not really sure what my "style" is for patchwork, but I like doing more improvisational piecing for these block party things, so I went with that. For this first block, I really wanted to show off that awesome apple print! I also fussy cut the cat in the (off-) center of the block. It was too tempting!

Tethered Threads Nov 2
As much as I like that first block, I loooove this second one! That brown is just too fabulous here! I used it all up in this one, though. At the end I had a few more apple scraps, which I added to the bottom left side. LOVE! Again, Flickr group page is HERE to see the rest of what's being made. My month is March and I'm really getting excited!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Gifted: Wedding quilt

Brady quilt 4
This project has also been finished for a couple of weeks but it's taken me this long to finally blog about it. Trying to get better, I promise! This was a wedding gift for my friends, a couple I lovingly refer to as the Bradys due to their menagerie at home (animals, not kids) and their names being Cindy and Bobby. They planned a very small wedding over the summer and I only heard about it a couple of weeks before it happened, so it's not an issue that this was a belated wedding gift. They got it before Christmas, which was my plan!

Brady quilt 8
The quilt is about 54" square and made entirely out of Laura Gunn's Lantern Bloom fabrics (LOVE!) and is based off this pattern, although I made quite a few adjustments. First, I changed the background so that it was made up of 9" (finished) blocks of varying widths. I wanted to use the half yards I'd purchased more effectively, and I wanted to really show off these prints, because I think they're made to be used big.

Brady quilt 3
For the tree, I used another of those Moda Bella Solids (also LOVE!). I drew the tree on some fusible web, fused it to the brown, cut out the tree, and fused it to the quilt. I then quilted just inside the edge using brown quilting thread so that I could outline the shape and add reinforcement (my web didn't stick all that well, even with the help of a hot steam iron). After that, I fused web to a large patch of the red lanterns on cream fabric, cut out a bunch of lanterns, and placed them wherever seemed right on the tree. I like this effect better than doing the 3D lanterns the pattern calls for. I think this quilt will be used, and I think the fused lanterns make it more useable than the appliqu├ęd ones.

Brady quilt binding
I quilted the background in an all-over scribbly curlicue stipple, avoiding the tree and lanterns, but stitching around each lantern, just inside the raw edge. I bound the entire thing in the stripe from the line. The photos were taken at night after I presented the quilt to the happy couple (after a very rushed wash-and-dry) so they aren't the greatest. This whole daylight-savings thing is throwing me off, and only lets me take halfway decent photos on the weekends, which isn't always an option! Anyway, I'm really happy with the final product, even though the photos are kinda dark. Rob was very impressed with it as well, saying he thought it was my best work to date. I'm not sure I agree, but I do think it's up there...

Brady quilt back 2
More pictures of the quilt and the pieced back on my Flickr page.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Sequined belt re-do

Belt redo 4
Remember back here when I wrote about the crafty swap I did with my friend Hilary? What I didn't mention in that post is that Hilary also dropped off a bag of fabric scraps from a handbag designer (??) that she thought I could use as well as a sequined belt that she asked me to do something with. I came up with this bag! I had it done for a good month, but because the car died, I wasn't able to give it to her until this past Friday.

Belt redo inside
The outer fabric of the bag is some kind of a denim, though it unraveled really quickly, which made it a little difficult to work with. I just top-stitched scraps of the heavier cottons (they're odd, like cotton glued to duck cloth??) on to the one side, then pieced the entire thing together. The lining is a great cotton stripe that I had on hand that I thought would match perfectly!

Belt redo 1
The handles are faux (I think) leather, and I added them in when I stitched the lining to the outside, then top-stitched the entire thing. I added the sequined belt last. It was a little tricky, and I originally planned on hand-stitching it on, but I did some quick tests and decided I could use my machine. My machine was a little unhappy, but we all got through it, and the finished project was done in less than an hour!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Hunter's Star quilt top

Hunter's Star top
I took a class for this in the first week in October and am just now posting pictures of it! Ugh--life. The class basically teaches you how to use Deb Tucker's "Rapid-Fire Hunter's Star" ruler. I'm a visual learner, but just looking at the ruler kind of freaked me out, so I'm glad I had the class to walk me through it. Also, it was the first class I'd taken in a looooong time (a year? more?) and it was great just to spend a day at my LQS with my quilting friends!

Hunter's Star detail
The ruler lets you make the same pattern in up to 4 different fabrics, but I wanted to keep it simple and opted for a lovely sage green repro and a white Moda Bella solid. Oh my, are those solids lovely to work with! I usually use Kona solids, but these Bellas have such a lovely hand... Anyway. I'm very impressed with my points! I'm not usually a picky stitcher--my motto tends to be "good enough for who it's for"--but even I was quite impressed with those sharp points and the way even the star center came together so easily. It was said a number of times in my class that it's a very forgiving block, and I always thought, "Yeah, right," but it really is!

Hunter's Star border star
For the border I wanted to finish the stars (tricky, but worth it) but wanted to bleed them into my border fabric, a Kona solid in a 30s green that I like to use a lot. I like the way they look kind of floating there.

This still has to be quilted, and I may add another 1" or so of the green to the border just so there's some definite distance between the stars and the binding. When finished, I think this'll hang on the wall near my sewing machine. I have plans in the works for two more smaller quilts using the same ruler/technique, so it wasn't THAT bad!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

STUD October received

STUD Oct rec'd mini
Please don't take my delayed posting to mean my wonderful STUD swap package from Ryan was late! It arrived on October 28, which also happened to be an awful day (among other things, my car was pronounced officially dead). I received this lovely batik tree quilt...

STUD Oct pkg rec'd
...and all of these extras! Seriously, it was SO much! It really made my day. There's lotion, a notepad, buttons, floss bobbins, a magazine, a tissue cozy, and a bunch of 30s fabrics! I definitely felt spoiled, and it couldn't have come at a better time. So, thanks, Ryan, for being such a great swap partner!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Gifted: Another birthday hippo

Cynthia hippo 4
Apologies (again!) for being gone for so long. Between having to share Rob's computer at home and being swamped at work, I've definitely fallen behind in my posting of things. Not helpful is the fact that I've had gifts made but have not had a chance to give them to their recipients! But that has been remedied, so watch for a lot of posts from me in the near future.

Cynthia hippo 2
This hippo is one of those gifts that was completed and then sat in my apartment for a month before reaching its recipient. It's a birthday gift for my friend Cynthia. She's an artist, so I opted for a little more crazy combination of fabrics, but I think it's still adorable! I do love these hippos so much.

Two hippos
Here he is with my repro hippo. Aren't they cute together?