Friday, January 23, 2015

Christmas Goodies

 I thought I'd share some of the fun Sewing and Crafting goodies I received for Christmas.  You know, to help you figure out what you need ;).

 A collection of hexagon punches from Fiskars.  The idea here is for me to cut my own papers for EPP.  Consistent and easy.
 (these I actually bought for myself)  Incidentally, the smallest hexie punch fits perfectly in these little hexie charms.  Lots of ideas for these...  The Reindeer was an experiment.
 Three Hexagon Rulers! 
 Some great bobbin storage.  I am in love with the rings.  IN LOVE!  The handibobs don't fit all thread spools, so we'll see how that goes.
The two Perfect Scissors from Karen Kay Buckley that I didn't have yet!  Yay!
 And two books on artistry/creativity.  The Little Spark is more of a work book to get you motivated.  I enjoyed reading through it, but I'm not really one for writing my negative feelings on paper and burning them, if you know what I mean.
 This is a great book.  My plan is to read it monthly.  Its not deep, but it is very inspiring and I wanted to just list quote after quote from the book for you.  Go buy your own.

 In other news.  I started quilting the Temperature Quilt last night, and then ripped it all out.  Now I'm thinking chevrons.  I shall do some cleaning of the house while I contemplate.  I am always productive when I'm in avoidance mode. :)

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Thursday Update

 I've finished up a couple of small projects so far today.  (real time blogging, weird)
 This is a 10"x10" patchwork square.  It was pieced when I made my pixel pumpkin quilt a couple years ago.  Decided to finish it up for a large hotpad/ trivet.
 Two layers of cotton batting in this one and quilted with the three-step zig-zag in Aurifil cream.

 This one is from left overs from the two feathered Christmas quilts I'm working on.  They are both basted and ready to go.  I went ahead and quilted this little thing, even though I never managed to get it square.  Has a strange curve on the sides.  Oh, well.
 It measures about 11" x 13".  Not sure what I"ll do with it, but at least its not a UFO.  I still love this backing fabric.  Got it from Connecting Threads 3? years ago.

Tonight begins the quilting on the Temperature Quilt.  YEEHAW!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

WIP Wednesday 1.21.15

WHAT?!? WIP Wednesday, again?  I have not whipped many WIPs this week.  Sigh.

 I do have this cute little finish.  After making a few house blocks for another project in darker Thimbleberries fabrics, I thought a bright house, with a fussy cut window would be fun.  I need to find a place to hang it up.  It just shouts "Spring!"  It is lightly outlined quilted and I even finished the binding by hand!

As for the rest of the list:
1. Sample Project - DONE
2. 4-in-Art - Started!
3. Temperature Quilt - Ready to Baste, Tonight!
4. D's Quilt - yeah....
5. Tree Quilt - Basted!
6. Wreath Quilt - Basted!
7. Red/White Mini - Basted!
8. DA Quilt
9. Hexie Baby
10. Guild Challenge Quilt - Thirteen
11. Central Park
12. Charm Parade

 And this, This, THIS!  Is totally my next EPP project.  I came across this picture when I was doing some research on violins. 
 Mid Sweden University has been studying Stradivarius Violins to find their "secrets".  This is an acoustic study of one. I think it will be a brilliant quilt.  So take that!  All you Epic Milliefiore EPP Quilters!  (not really, that is totally on my bucket list)

Linking with Lee.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Quilts and Sewing in Children's Books Part 2

 Today I'll share a couple pictures from the book Little Bear by Else Holmelund Minarik.  Pictures by Maurice Sendak.  There are actually three shorter stories in this book.  In the first one Little Bear keeps coming in the house for more clothes to be warm while he plays outside.
Mother bear is obviously busy trying to sew her new skirt!
In the second story we see Mother Bear sitting at her sewing machine, although not exactly set up to sew.  I think it is telling that Sendak could have had Mother Bear doing a variety of things in these stories, but for at least two illustrations, she was sewing. 

A reader left me a comment and a link last week when I shared my first installment of this series. 
It is a collection of books with quilts in them and the quilts that were made to accompany the books.  Such a wonderful idea.

 Just a reminder, if I don't respond to your comments you might be a "no-reply blogger".  You can Google it to find out how to fix it.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

WIP Thursday 1.15.15

Half way through January.  It always seems like such a long month, until suddenly its over!  I missed out on WIP Wed., so how about WIP Thursday?

 Last night I took a break from all the "I should finish this.... projects" and made my first Jelly Roll Race quilt.   Hmmm.  I actually don't really like them very often.  Too random in the value placement.  The only ones I've really ever liked were ones in a single colorway.  Anyway, I thought I would try and to break up the obvious strip changes I cut up two of the purple strips and used them as linking blocks.

 It's OK.  I admittedly don't like the lack of control.  The prints are all pretty busy, so its OK, but not my favorite quilt ever.  I won't be keeping it.  The measurements ended kind of awkward too, my roll had 30 strips, and I cut up two so in the above picture it is approx 39" x 62".
 In this picture I folded down the top three rows.  A little better visually, I think.  It's been moved to the "unfinished tops" box.
 In other news, all my hexies are in quads!  That makes roughly 500 units.  I think it may now be no longer a travel project, because as they are put into units of 8, they don't really fit in my box any more. 
 Now, for a list of things that I should work on.  In what I consider priority.

1. Sample Project
2. 4-in-Art
3. Temperature Quilt
4. D's Quilt
5. Tree Quilt
6. Wreath Quilt
7. Red/White Mini
8. DA Quilt
9. Hexie Baby
10. Guild Challenge Quilt - Thirteen
11. Central Park
12. Charm Parade

I could add more, but I think I'll stop there.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Temperture Quilts 2014 & 2015

 No, no, the 2014 Temperature quilt isn't done, but by the time you read this the back should be ready to go.

 I worked on the label.  I intend to make it a part of the back and so quilted in.
I think now I'm obligated to finish it this month!
The strip on the left is the fabrics and the assigned temperature ranges for the quilt.  The two strips on the right are for the two trips we took away from home.  The top is our trip to Florida and the bottom to Norther Michigan.
The backing will primarily be this batik that I got at IKEA.  $2.00 for 6 yards.  Can't beat that!  (I bought 18 yards)
 I have prepped for the 2015 Temp Quilt.  Many of the fabrics are the same.  Some have been replaced and some have been reshuffled.  I am still using the Fossil Fern line by Bernatex.  For those of you that might have seen this on Instagram, I swapped out two of the fabrics since.  The purple and pink both stand out to me right now, so they may go, too.  Although the chances of 100-104 degrees is pretty low, and maybe it should stand out!
 I have for sure decided to go with the half square triangles.  Even though it will be smaller than this year's quilt, it will be twice as much work - yikes.  I haven't started yet, as I haven't decided a size and therefore haven't done the maths for the triangles.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Sewing and Quilting in Children's Books Part 1

We read a lot of books in our house, as you can imagine.  We actually own more books than I can count.  Most of our bookshelves are two layers of books deep.

Over the years of reading books to my children I have noticed that sewing or quilts are often part of the illustrations - if not part of the story itself.  I think it says a lot about what quilts mean to our culture, especially as a subtle everyday kind of thing. To that end, I am going to start a little series called Sewing and Quilting in Children's Books.  I don't know that it will be particularly scheduled, or consistent, but as I come across the subjects in books, I will share them with you.

Now I know that you're thinking that Q is for Quilt - but I promise it will be more than that!

 The first one is from a book called How Animals Sleep by Millicent Selsam and illustrated by Ezra Jack Keats.
 What I generally find is that the quilts depicted are a simple patchwork (see below) but check out this one!  I think it looks like a quilt made up of a bunch of left over blocks from other projects combined with some polka dots and stars.  Isn't it wonderful?
 The next book is Andrew Henry's Meadow written and illustrated by Doris Burn.  I love this book in a lot of ways - it is about the creativity and individuality of children and really celebrates that.
 Here is Andrew Henry with his pulley system and patchwork quilt at the beginning of the story.
 His sisters "Marian and Martha liked to sew...."  One of them here is depicted doing some hand work.
 This illustration is the best, when Andrew uses the belts from the sewing machine to make his carousel work.  Note that one of the girls has knitting needles in her bag.