Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Another Fine Nest

Because my February will be monstrous with work, travel, and dissertation, I'm getting a jump on the Birds of a Feather group project. Here's my second block:

I really like the way the zig-zaggy background worked here. I also discovered that fusible cut on the bias works just like any other bias, so I was able to whirl my vine around just fine. I'll now be able to take both blocks to my quilt retreat early next month to blanket stitch them. Here's how the two blocks look together--they won't be sewn in this order at all (and, in fact, go in different sections of the quilt), but it gives a nice idea of how the fabrics are playing off each other:

I'm happy I took on this project. It's pushing me to look at my fabrics in different ways and take some risks with patterns and colors.

Also, many thanks to everyone who wrote nice things about my dog--who's a girl, actually. I'd like to put in a plug for adopting rescued animals, especially adult ones. We adopted her about six months ago from a rescue group and couldn't ask for a more wonderful pet. She tolerates us all: kids, grown-ups, and cats.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

How I Know I Have Enough Fabric . . .

Because my rather large dog can sleep in it . . . and it doesn't even stop me from finishing a project because I have two other completely full storage boxes of repros to work with :) And, I didn't even have to break open the full box of plaids!

Empty and Full

This is an entry about my psycho Type-A tendencies--and how they sometimes do pay off.

Because I don't have enough to do :), I recently signed up for a Yahoo group on Primitive Folk Applique. Prior to my joining, the group had decided to do Blackbird Design's "Birds of a Feather" as a year project. Well, of course, I was several weeks behind, so I immediately ordered the book from Amazon and downloaded the first block from the KCStar website. I rewarded myself for finally whipping all my dissertation raw data into meaningful variables and finding that several of my independent variables are statistically significant (YES!!), and spent my Grey's Anatomy time tracing out all the Block 1 pieces. This morning, I set my daughter up on Stardoll and my son in front of Pirates of the Caribbean II--with the scary bits redacted by me during the watching--and got to work. By the time my husband woke up, I was done with this part:

I took a quick break to run to the grocery store, eat lunch, get the kids down for nap, and throw the roast together in the slow cooker. Then, managed to do this:

I'm doing it with fusible and blanket stitch, so now I have just the latter to complete. And, it's all from my stash! The only thing that I'm uncomfortable with is the brighter yellow/green on the big leaves, but I'll work it and the same tone into other blocks so that it stands out less. It also brings some light into the quilt to give it movement. Plus, it's from my stash (did I say that already?).

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Too, Too Much

I was reading around the ring the other night and found a post on someone's blog (I forget where, it was late) about having too much fabric. I immediately felt the shame of recognition! This is the fabric I pulled from my stash for a project at an upcoming quilt retreat. See how it all falls together (sort of, I'm still on the fence about that Fassett)--quite a coincidence :) Clearly, I bought most of this at some point for some project that I can no longer recall. And, it has been sitting, for who knows how long, in a plastic bin just waiting to be used. When I was finishing up the Welcome quilt (shown in a previous post), I pulled out a fabric that was marked 1997 on the selvedge. So, it had likely been been sitting around for 10 years! Good gravy! So, one of my resolutions for this year is NOT to buy any more fabric--or books--or patterns. I need to show some love to all of the glorious fabric that I just-had-to-have last month, or last year, or last decade. And, unlike my eternal promise NOT to buy any more shoes, I really mean this one. (Seriously, who can resist the allure of Piperlime, with the individually wrapped shoe boxes and the cute notes and the awesome clearance prices?)

Saturday, January 06, 2007

When the Welcome is Finished

Yay! It's done--and boo! I once again put the hangars in direct line with the white hanging hooks, making the top all wavy. But, it's already after 11, and I'm ready to crawl into bed to read and watch SNL with guest host the remarkable 2nd-act-er Alec Baldwin and the remarkable all-act-er Tony Bennett. So, I'm thinking it's fine for tonight. I really liked the way the border turned out. I had to think it through a bit to get the L's to align as I wanted, and I love the way these two burgun-reds play off each other. I also managed to take a photo of one corner (without flash-blinding it) to show the quilting.

I did simple echo channel quilting every 1/2 inch around the square, but it's been so long since I've done straight lines in my borders that I was quite proud of it. All in all, a perfectly satisfying small project that now serves as a lovely greeting for all who stop by (including my postperson, who leaves me extra JoAnn's flyers with nice notes about how she likes my quilts!).

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Welcome, New Year

This is my latest work in progress. I packed away "The Merriest" until next Christmas season, and wanted to put together something new--quickly--for the new year. I plopped down on the floor of my quilt room to run through patterns and found a long-ago purchased one from Little Quilts with a bunch of letters. I thought about spelling out "Welcome" but didn't want a longish banner. Then, I realized I could arrange the letters in a folky nine-patch with some fillers. By the way, the four patch fillers you see here aren't yet sewn, so don't fret about my seam matching ability. I just laid the whole thing out to see if the colors worked. I tried out about 10 different borders before deciding to split the difference and will go with "L"s of the two I liked the most. I really do like the way this is turning out; it looks just odd enough to have character. Currently, it's only arranged on my ironing board, and I hope to have it all finished by the weekend. Welcome, new year . . . just two days in, I'm already too busy for you but am willing to give it a go if you are :)