Weekend fun and slow progress

4 Jun

I had most of last week to myself, as Seth went away to a music festival after work on Tuesday and only returned late Saturday night. Since he was gone, I…. well, I pretty much didn’t really do anything!

I did a tiny bit of sewing, as I began a Drawstring Quilt from the pattern from Tickle & Hide.  It went together really quickly, and by the time I went to bed on Tuesday, I had a top:

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I had hoped to finish it by Friday, but as I mentioned above, instead of finishing it, I lazed around and got some did some summer reading.

Over the weekend, I went back to my parents’ house, as both of my sisters were home. They currently live on opposite coasts, thanks to college and opera jobs, so it’s a rare day that we are all home (unless it’s Thanksgiving or Christmas!).

Friday night, we hit the First Friday Art Walk. It was my first one of these, and I’d like to make it back to another! Mom decided we needed a picture:

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From left to right: Lindsay (middle child, opera singer), Mom (embodiment of amazing), Annalise (baby sister, grad student), Lisbeth (me) (oldest child, quilter, breastedly-blessed).

Then Mom wanted some shots of Lindsay and her husband, Patrick, in the street in front of the train that was passing in the background:

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Never mind safety – we must have the train picture!

Back home, I’ve managed to get most of the quilting done on the drawstring quilt:

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The pattern of the quilting is, as usual, much clearer on the reverse:

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I love the hexagons and triangles on the back! This is the side that’ll show when the quilt is drawn up into a bag –  I think the print will work really well as the, as it’ll pretty much look like a purse.

I’m already planning to make one of these for myself. I may make another yet, as a coworker saw a picture, and immediately asked if he could commission me to make one as a surprise for his wife. I told him I’d be happy to, but he needed to buy the fabric. His favorite when I showed him a few options on Etsy? Flea Market Fancy – smart man!

Woo-hoo!!!

28 May

I won! You guys, seriously, I never win. But LOOK! I won! I have to go decide if this-week-Lisbeth still wants some Lark (I think I do), and if I want a jelly roll or a layer cake. I’m leaning towards the jelly roll, but I’m not entirely sure yet. Thoughts?

Also, even if I hadn’t won a single material thing, I added 38 new-to-me blogs to my Google Reader – that definitely counts as a win for me no matter how you look at it! Huzzah for Sew, Mama, Sew‘s Giveaway Day! I think I’ll try to remember to have something set up to giveaway myself next time!

In other news, thanks for the words of encouragement on the medallion blocks – I think that outside of my bee blocks and some baby sewing (oh, right – while I was gone from the blog I went and got pregnant! How totally awesome is that?), I’m going to focus on make a quilt-load of the medallion blocks. I’ve been thinking it might be really neat to have the fabric that creates the X (pink the one I made), be the same throughout the entire quilt. Or not. I’m still letting that marinate in my head.

Hey, wanna see some pictures?

These are all the blocks I’ve received so far for my month in the Modern Minx bee:

My Modern Minx blocks

I think there are still a few more on their way, but I absolutely love them all together. The pattern is Pinball Machine from 99 Modern Blocks. I love this block. I’ve used it for another swap, too.

Next up are the blocks I’ve received so far from the NuBees Monthly Block Swap:

NuBees blocks received so far

I think I may stick with this color scheme one more month. I have a couple more blocks on their way for May, and if I do this colorway in June, too, I’ll have enough for a quilt that 4 across and 4 down, with a few coordinating throw pillow. Or, who knows – maybe I’ll decide to redecorate our bedroom in orange and green and gray, and I’ll go two or three more months so I can make a queen-size quilt!

Mt. Medallion

25 May

I just finished a block that may be the most challenging piecing I’ve done yet.
Medallion Block, first attempt

I first saw this block over at elegantitus – she wrote about it way back in August of 2011: Mysterious Medallion Quilt Blocks. She’d seen it over at Sew Kind of Wonderful, where there was little to go on except that the block was difficult. So, the marvelous Cassie from elegantitus has recreated the block, and sent out the call for pattern testers. Having loved the block since I saw her attempt it, my hand shot up so fast, straining up high, hoping she’d call on me to try (okay, really I just emailed her. Work with me on the classroom analogy, mkay?). I had a reply the next day, with a pattern attached. Oh, man – I was so, SO excited. I was going to make it that night (that night was only last night, for the record). But… then a stupid migraine happened.

Luckily, I feel fine tonight! And lo, I have created a [somewhat unintentionally wonky] Medallion block! I don’t claim to have done it well, but it’s done, and despite the crooked seams and the fact that it fell short of a true 12″ square (heck, fell short of square, period – do you see those cut-off corners?), I love it. LOVE. I suspect there are more of these in my future (but likely not for anyone else for a while, as I’d hate to make anything less than square for any of my bees!).

I think some of my difficulty stems from the fact that I’ve never really worked with 45° triangles before and getting everything aligned correctly is a booger. What are your tricks for getting all the edges aligned so that the resulting larger triangles stay square and true?

WIP Wednesday: Fishes reappear

23 May

So, I got the brilliant idea to ask the new mama what fishy layout she liked. She’s going to be the one looking at it (and washing it…), so she should probably be the one with final say, don’t you think?

She voted for Layout 4, so that’s the one I went with.
Fishes in progress

Based on the rock star advice of some awesome ladies in my hive in the NuBees Monthly Block Swap, I sewed varying lengths of blue to each row to get them all to the same length. I’ve got the bottom four rows together in pairs, and that’s where I’m stopping for the night.I’m pretty happy with it so far – for a minute, I was a little concerned about sewing the rows directly to each other. I considered a thin spacer row between each fish row, but that plan was tossed out after I realized how much blue I have (not quite enough for my comfort, as it turns out). I think having the fish butted up against each other works (if you disagree, well….maybe don’t tell me, because I’m so not redoing it).

In other fun stuff, I discovered a fun pattern earlier this week when I was prowling blog land thanks to Sew Mama Sew’s Giveaway Day (so, so much fun!). It’s called the 1600 Quilt (the link that made me sit up and take notice, the actual pattern info). I decided to give it a try last night. Pretty easy, but I forgot one thing – you need a real jelly roll. I had a small jelly roll that I picked up at Tuesday Morning last December (for $4.99!!!). It turned out pretty well, but it turns out that if you only have 24 strips (instead of 40), you end up with a somewhat awkwardly long quilt top:

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My husband and sister-in-law (who’s holding it in the picture above) both voted to keep it as it is and use it on the couch or as a picnic blanket. Eh, who am I to argue?

It took me about 2.5 hours to piece it, which I was pretty happy about.

What do you guys think – would you keep it long and lean like it is above, or would you add some other fabric to widen it? Or maybe cut it in half and make a square-ish baby quilt with matching-ish front and back? Or do you have other ideas? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

A fishy layout

27 Feb

The fishes are finished! The quilt they will make, though, is not. I’ve had the general layout planned for a bit already, but it turns out getting the colors in just the right spot is a bit tougher. (Who knew, right?)

I have a few thoughts, but I’d love to hear your opinions: would you tell me which you like, and why? Or if you don’t really like any of them? Or just tell me your favorite way to deal with giving up diet Coke (I’m guzzling water, but I really, really miss it…)?

Layout 1:
Layout 1

Layout 2:
Layout 2

Layout 3:
Layout 3

Layout 4:
Layout 4

*Please forgive the photos: it’s nighttime, I’m using my phone’s camera, I’m not all that awesome at photography, blah, blah, blah… When it’s all done, I will make take prettier pictures, mmmkay?

Fishes!

24 Feb

So. My husband has this uncle. His uncle is only a few months older than my husband. They went to college together (for a little while, anyway), and Seth (<– that’s my husband)and I are pretty darn fond of him. This uncle is now married (we like her too!), and he and his wife are having a baby. This is all fabulously exciting, right?

So, since I now feel the need to provide quilty snuggles to all the small people in my family, I’m making a quilt. The baby’s room has an Under the Sea theme, but I wasn’t sure what to do to go with that.

Enter the MQG’s 100 Days of Modern Quilting, where I was introduced to Norma Cecil’s Leading the Pack. Fishes! Little, simply-shaped, paper-pieced fishes! I’ve made a few already:

Fishes! 1-6

So far, they’re all orange, but I’ve got a pile of rainbows just waiting to swim…

Future fishes

First Bee Blocks

22 Feb

Hey, so, I blinked and January was gone. So much for the consistent posting!

But enough about that – I’ve been sewing! I made some blocks for the Modern Minx Bee:
Modern Minx Bee Blocks
1. Envy – January Modern Minx block, 2. Stargazing – February Modern Minx block, 3. Stargazing – February Modern Minx block

Then, I made some blocks for my NuBees hive:
Feb 2012 NuBees Hive 2
1. Feb 2012 NuBees Hive 2 for Karen, 2. Feb 2012 NuBees Hive 2 for Jana, 3. Feb 2012 NuBees Hive 2 for Alyson, 4. Feb 2012 NuBees Hive 2 for Laura, 5. Feb 2012 NuBees Hive 2 for Nancy

I mailed all of those off yesterday. I can’t wait to see what comes for me!

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