Monday, January 9, 2017

2017 First Quarter Plans

My ambitious plans for the first quarter of 2017 include the following projects.

1. Quilt, bind and gift this baby quilt to my nephew and his wife. Their baby girl was born in December and is my brother's first grandchild. Any clues for quilting this bias cut quilt.? It is very wonky, plus I chose a double gauze for the backing. Wish me luck, please.

2. With the remaining blocks from the above quilt I need to make another baby quilt for another nephew's baby daughter born in December, too. This one will have a different arrangement and hopefully won't be as wonky.

3. These blocks from my Stitch Tease Bee friends needs an arrangement. I'm planning on adding a circle or two of flying geese to it and then it needs to be assembled, quilted and bound.

4. I started this Find Your Fade Shawl and would love to finish it. I am anxious for it to grow so people don't think I am knitting a bikini.

5. My youngest son has asked me to make him some cactus plants for his baby's nursery. They are using a Mid-Century Modern/Palm Springs theme in the room. The baby is due in two weeks.

The felt and stuffing have been purchased.

6. Lastly, I would like to finish this quilt. I need to assemble this stack of 6.5" blocks into 12.5" blocks. Then I need to assemble the quilt top, quilt it and bind it. This might be an ambitious goal, but I'll give it a good try.

This is what the blocks will look like. The starry blocks were made by my Stash Sewciety Bee friends. I made the drunkard path blocks.

I'm linking up with the lovely ladies of the Finish Along. They all put so much time into organizing and running this fun link party. I really do appreciate each and every one of them.

Capitola Quilter

After some thought, I have decided to turn the comment section back on. Thank you to those who wrote me privately and expressed the enjoyment of my blog. I look forward to your comments and I always reply, so please make sure you are not a "no reply commenter" if you need an answer to a question.

Friday, January 6, 2017

2016 Q4 Finish Along...the finishes

1. Tropical Sunset 

This one only needed binding, so it was an easy finish.

2. Happy Fall Y'All

This quilt needed to be quilted and bound. I was so thrilled when my eldest son said he liked it that I gave it to him for Christmas!

3. Confetti Socks

Finished and gifted to my friend/hairdresser for Christmas.

4. Flowering Snowball Quilt
I finished this quilt with not a minute to spare. It will have it's own blog post with more photos next week.

2016 FAL

Monday, January 2, 2017

Tropical Sunset Quilt

This quilt came on a whim to me. I was looking at my solids stash and just started pulling pinks, yellows, oranges and reds. I then took out my GO! cutter and started cutting shapes using the drunkard's path die. After sewing together several blocks I decided to add blues and greens and I threw in some neutrals to give the eyes a place to rest.
I had so much fun making this quilt because I had no idea of where it was going or how big I would be making it. 
I decided very early on that this quilt would be named Tropical Sunset because the upper colors are the color of a sunset and the bottom are the colors of the Caribbean Sea.

I really enjoy sewing curves. Placing the 7" blocks in a random fashion created several different circle and semi-circle arrangements.

When it came time to quilt this piece I decided I wanted it to be done by a long arm quilter, so I sent it off to  Sometimes Crafter.  Christina and I exchanged several emails until we came up with a semi-custom quilting motif. The yellow/orange section is quilted with a sort of sundial pattern and the blue/green section is a waves and bubbles pattern. Each section has it's own variegated thread color, too.

I chose Tula's Free Fall wide back print in the Creamsicle colorway. I just love using this fabric as backing. It has a bit of a shine to it and it feels so soft.

The last choice to be made was what to use for the binding fabric. Lately, I am all about the striped binding and my favorite, go-to binding is this narrow black and white stripe from Timeless Treasures.

We took the quilt with us to Arizona over the New Year's weekend and photographed it at the Wild Horse Pass Resort, where we were staying. Some how a quilt named "Tropical Sunset" and the Arizona desert worked well together because neither one is stealing the other one's thunder.

This photo on the wedding lawn is one of my favorites of the photo shoot.

Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort

I could not have pulled off this photo shoot with out my trusty helpers...
Mr. Romance

and Martha Stewart Labradoodle.

Quilt Stats:
Name:Tropical Sunset
        Quilt top:All solids from stash
        Backing:Free Fall by Tula Pink, color Creamsicle 
        Binding:Narrow Black and White stripe by Timeless Treasures
Batting:Quilter's Dream wool 
Finished Size: 81"x82"

This quilt is another finish on my 2016 Q4 Finish Along list.

2016 FAL

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all!
This is our Christmas card this year.

This photo was taken in Dublin. I just love the festive look of the bar, with all the lights and the old world red building. The Temple Bar is a famous landmark in Dublin. We listened to some talented local musicians playing while there.
The family photo was taken at my mom's memorial reception. It was the last time were were all together in 2016. I look forward to every moment when we all gather together and try to take a photo every time. 
p.s....Paul thinks he looks like FBI in this photo. I agree!

I hope you all have a very Happy Christmas. For some this holiday does not bring joy, so remember to be kind to everyone you meet. I wish all my Jewish friends a very Happy Hanukkah, too!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Ugly Sweater Block Pillow

Several weeks ago I saw all these incredibly fun Ugly Sweater Blocks popping up on Instagram. I resisted for a few weeks but seriously, how can you resist making something so cute? 
The first one I made was in a plaid fabric by Jeni Baker. My gorgeous quilted Santa received a lot of comments. He was purchased in New Orleans in 1987 and is a family favorite Christmas decoration.

ugly sweater block

The next Ugly Sweater Block I made was with this cute panda print by Animaland.  Who can resist a panda butt?

ugly sweater block

Keeping with the "ugly" theme, my next block was made with a C&S print. The print is not ugly, but I would never wear a sweater made from this fabric.

ugly sweater block

The last sweater is an old strawberry print fabric I had in my stash. Enough said...this would be an incredibly ugly sweater in real life.

ugly sweater block

I decided to make a pillow with the four blocks. I know some have made enough blocks for a quilt; I am not that ambitious. These blocks are very time consuming. I can see making many more as a long term project, but that's a project for another time.
I asked Mr. Romance to take a photo of me holding the pillow...he thought Martha should be in the photo. 

ugly sweater block quilted pillow

Here's a better photo of what I asked him to focus on. I asked him to take a photo of the Feed Me Tacos sweater and the pillow; no make-up equals no face photos  please. My cute sweater was purchased from  my daughter-in-law's shop LolaJeannine.  Isn't it fun?

LolaJeannine Instagram

When it came time to quilt the pillow I knew I wanted to make the sweaters pop, so I quilted the white areas surrounding the sweaters quite densely, leaving the actual sweaters unquilted. I used a C&S print from the Tinsel line to finish the pillow front and used straight lines spaced appoximately 1/2 inch apart to quilt it.

cotton and steel tinsel fabric

I had this fantastic print from Carolyn Friedlander's Carkai line for the back of the pillow. It coordinates so well with the Tinsel fabric.

A zipper hidden behind a flap makes the pillow completely washable. I like to remove the pillow cover to store it in the off season. So now I'll need to make a second pillow cover to fit this form.

carolyn friedlander carkai fabric

The finished pillow fits a 14"x28" pillow form. I just love it so much. It will be gifted this Christmas.
ugly sweater block quilted pillow