Saturday, January 28, 2017

Sew Days are Great Days

My applique group books a workroom for two days every three months.  My gf M and I come prepared with boxes of blocks.  The design walls are fantastic and we take full advantage.  Here are a few 'show and tells' from our sewing days.

Almost all of this are from Kim Diehl's first two collections that were used for her BOM patterns. MF decided to "cut it up and use it up". Great job.  She did get this top together that day!

Work stations quickly filled up with supplies and projects in the making.

Not all of us brought out the machines.  Several ladies worked on hand projects both days.

JB was working of Foxes, but I did not snap a picture. I will share it another time.
M stopped by on Friday and got a few blocks up on the design wall.  A fun baby quilt in the making.

KA started this Pies and Tarts quilt quite some time ago.  She has stayed on it and brought her blocks to use the design wall.

Here is the start of her layout.  I love the brown background and she has made her 'pies and tarts' from Asian fabrics.  Some are fussy cut, some random, and some are from a full circle of fabric.  A great way to let the design work for you!

CD has started on this project.  She took the plunge and trimmed the center section with all the beautiful embroidery and added the pieced border.  I thought this striped border was from one strip of fabric, but her work is so precise, it was hard to tell where the white strips were added. 

Here is her pile of blocks for the next round.  This is going to be a beauty when it's all finished.

GB was working on some EPP with some fun fussy cut centers on some of these blocks.

CO also brought her EPP.  She, and others have gotten hooked on Hexi's and they have been making some amazing blocks.  Again, our fabric designers have certainly helped us out with so many fabulous prints to choose from.  C also made progress on a Log Cabin project over the two days.

Here is a very sweet piece that MN put up on the wall.  Sorry, I don't know the source of this pattern but it sure is cute.  I remember those candies!

As for me, I have been packing this project to our sew days F O R E V E R!!! And this time I finally got it finished. This is Bonnie Hunters Mystery quilt, Carolina Christmas from years ago. I did not start it before I saw the reveal. I don't do mystery quilts well. I loved it and I also saw it as an opportunity to learn the Easy Angle ruler. Making this quilt was a big undertaking, if you've made Bonnie's patterns you will know why. So much piecing. Which means so much cutting. Which translates into so many seams and so much pressing and organizing. Unfortunately for me, and for the quilt, I cut the strips for the border piecing a 1/2" narrower. When I started on the pieced border it became apparent something wasn't quite right. Since this has been in the works for so long, the fabrics in the quilt are nowhere to be found. I did have some left over trimmings from a quilt back in this mottled green, and it was used in the center of the quilt. After opinions were tossed about, the red stop border was added. There is enough of the green to make the binding. Now to get it quilted! I do love it, I'm so glad I persevered on this pattern, and it finished at approx. 90 x 90. Perfect for the bed at Christmas 2017!

I showed this piece and wrote some details to hopefully motivate a reader or two. If you loved something enough to pull the fabric, cut your blocks and start piecing it, pull it out and re visit the project. Even if you only refresh yourself on the pattern and directions, make some notes to keep in the box so the next time it will be easy to start into it. I've refreshed myself on something too many times, and found that just that was enough to stop me from moving forward. Make the notes, put it back on the shelf, and next time you can just start in on it. Finished is SO much better than a box of cut pieces.

Keep stitching,

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Starts? or Finishes?

January is a strange time for quilters.  It seems some of us are caught between two forces.  Do we finish up some things we started in the past year(s)?  or put some current ideas into action and start something new?  Looking around FB and IG, it seems we are split.  Many finished have happened and it's only mid January.  Me? I pulled out a stack of books to plan a year long project, just for me.  But I know I have too much on my plate and I'm hesitating on even pulling the fabric. 
I've focused on this instead.  Sorry, apparently I can't rotate photos today!

Pattern is a Minnick and Simpson from a few years back.  I finally got the hand quilting, binding and a sleeve stitched on, so I'm ready for next Christmas!

Judi Madson, aka Green Fairy Quilter, has an iquilt workshop that I purchased a while back.  I had the samples made, but didn't get to the quilting until just before Christmas and now they both have binding and sleeves.  Here is her modern pattern for quilting.  This is pretty dense, certainly for show, but not for most of the tops that I quilt for my customers. 

And here is her idea of more traditional designs.  All the motifs are ones that I have in my toolbox, but it was fun to put them together 'her' way.  A new twist on good designs.

What's to not love, feathers and continuous curves with swirls. 

And just for fun, I stitched up a little table topper with some scraps of Xmas fabric that have kicked around for years  Now they are used up and I have a new to me piece for Xmas 2017

So......If you have a closet full of these.........

Let me help you turn them into these. 

Nothing is better then finished.  Start as many new projects that you want, but get those tops quilted up and use them.  If you don't love them for yourself, get an edge to edge, or for even less dollars, get a meander quilted on them and gift/donate them out.

We invest our hard earned dollars into the fabric, we put a lot of emotion into the 'start' of every project.  Don't let all that go to waste.  Every quilt doesn't need, or even warrant custom, higher priced quilting.  And speaking of prices, my E2E all over prices have not been raised in years. 

Now is the time to assess those tops. Contact me through the comments section if you need some help adding to your finished list in 2017.  I'd love to quilt for you.

Keep stitching,