Thursday, October 16, 2014

Sew Sweetness embroidery pattern

I'm excited to share a project I got to work on this summer for Sara Lawson of Sew Sweetness. Sara put a call out on Instagram for testers for her new embroidery pattern, Fantasia. Since I love to do embroidery I jumped on the opportunity. I ended up making this mini quilt using one of her floral motifs....


It was such a fun project for m and I just loved the floral motif that was included in her pattern. I also tried out two tone binding on this project which was new to me. I've used it again & will write up a tutorial for it when I am able to share the project I perfected it on (more secrets. I know, I know).

Thanks for the opportunity to test for you Sara! I enjoyed it.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Dualing Asterisks

After much discussion on Instagram last night, I have decided to name this one Dualing Asterisks
 Made with my very first set of bee blocks. I love these asterisk blocks & love the way the quilt turned out! It was quilted by my favorite longarmer, Diann, with interlocking circles on top & rectangles on the bottom.

I also did matching binding on the two halves, which I learned from Debbie over at A Quilter's Table. Red binding on the red half....
 and blue binding on the blue half....
 So so happy to have my favorite photography assistant (son Steve) home this weekend....
Thanks Steve!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Bee blocks

I've been having fun making bee blocks for my friends in the McKinney Modern Quilt Guild. Joellen chose these awesome blocks for October. She gave us the yellow for the background and we added our own grays....
 Look at all of her blocks together on the design wall at the guild meeting! This is going to be a stunning quilt.
Bettepat wanted pink/orange/yellow bullseye blocks on text prints (she supplied some of the fabric and we added to it from our stash). These aren't due until our November meeting but I have such a busy month I thought I'd get them done early. They were fun to do!
Soon I will share my completed bee quilt with you!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

NYC!

In the spring, my oldest daughter Leigh Anne moved to New York City. It's been her dream since she was a little girl, to be a journalist in the Big Apple, and this year she made her dream come true. I couldn't wait to visit her there, to see her awesome apartment in Brooklyn (which is bigger and more beautiful than I ever expected!) to share some good food and meet her new friends. So, last Thursday, my buddy Joellen and I hopped on a plane and went to New York to see Leigh Anne!

yes indeed, we do often dress alike without planning it. always have.
While we were there we figured we might as well hit up a few quilt shops! Of course we made a trip (ok, we made TWO trips) to The City Quilter in Manhattan. 

 We found lots of awesome treasures there & the staff was so friendly and helpful. This is a shop not to miss if you find yourself in New York City.

Another, that I had been dying to visit was Purl Soho. As luck would have it, the shop is right near where Leigh Anne works, so we met her for lunch one day then walked around the corner to Purl Soho. Wow! Another wonderful shop. The yarn & wool are colorful and oh so tempting. And yes, I left there with a bag full of treasures too.

 Joellen found another prospective stop on the internet. Brooklyn General Store looked like a place we needed to see, so after brunch on Sunday near Leigh Anne's apartment, the three of us hopped in a cab and ventured there. I'm so glad we did!

never mind the closed sign! It was indeed open
Beautiful fabric (including lots of Liberty), beautiful trims, yarn and oodles of notions. While we were there, there was a children's sewing class going on in the back room. It was a busy, friendly place!


 You guessed it. I left with another bag!

Three awesome fabric/yarn/craft stores that you should check out. I know I'll be back.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

retreat fun

Last weekend I went with 7 of my friends from The McKinney Modern Quilt Guild on our first ever retreat. What fun! I was greeted at the door the very first day by this very smelly chicken
 We named him Bobbin. He was a pest ALL weekend!

I already shared with you my two major quilt top finishes.....
Asterisk bee blocks quilt top
Metro Hoops quilt top
I made two little zip bags (Suzy's Sacks by This and That). Here's one of them....
And when I ran out of projects, I started sewing 2 1/2 inch squares together for a future pillow cover....

One of our planned activities for the weekend was a mug rug swap. Here's the whole gang with the mug rugs they received.....
I received this gorgeous fall mug rug from Kristi, complete with a pretty red mug that matches my kitchen!
 I had made 2 mug rugs to bring in case someone didn't have a chance to make one (and I'm glad I did!) First this disappearing nine patch mug rug made with 2 1/2 inch squares....

hmmm it's sideways!
 and this one I made from some fun selvedges.....
If you want to read more about our retreat and see some of the other beautiful quilts and goodies the gals made, I blogged about it on the guild blog here.

Have you ever been on a crafty retreat?

Monday, September 29, 2014

World Wide Blog Hop


My friend Chantal nominated me to share with you in the World Wide blog hop. It's been so much fun reading everyone's posts and learning more about them. Even though I know Chantal (for real!) I learned some new things about her reading her post here. You really should go check out her awesome blog! So many beautiful quilting projects, lots of pretty crochet.... she inspires me all the time! 

Meanwhile, here are my answers to the questions for the blog hop.....

1.  What am I working on?

oh so many things! I'm playing with ideas for the Instagram mini swap. I'll share that with you soon. Lucky me, I was on a quilting retreat this past weekend with my friends from The McKinney Modern Quilt Guild.  I finished up TWO quilt tops that have been on my list for a while. First, my Asterisk Quilt top, made with the bee blocks I received:

The second top I completed is my Metro Hoops top, which I started at a class in August. This one is made with the Quick Curve Ruler. It's an awesome technique for sewing curves, but there are a million steps and I do believe this is a one time deal for me! I do love the finished top...

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Hmm I'm not really sure it does! I consider myself a modern quilter, though I do drift over into other types of quilting sometimes. I also love garment sewing. I rarely follow a pattern exactly as written (that metro hoops above would be the exception). I prefer to put my own spin on things, often creating my own layouts for quilts.

3. Why do I create what I do?

I've always been a creator, since I was a little girl! It's in my gene's I think..... my mom was always crafting when I was a child (she still is) and she encouraged me to create alongside her from a very early age. I'm so thankful for that! I try to create something every single day. It brings me joy! I have dabbled in many different crafts, scrapbooking, basketweaving (for real!), beading.... but for some reason fabric is my true love. I always seem to return to sewing and quilting.

4.  How does my creative process work?

This is a hard question! I'm one of those people who just jumps right in and tries things. Often my quilts and other projects evolve as I go. Sometimes I draw up ideas on graph paper. Here's the sketch I did for my Asterisk quilt:
I really love graph paper! Whenever I see a graph paper notebook in the store I snatch it up. Also, prismacolor pencils. A few years ago my husband bought me a tin full of every color pencil there is. I love them!

So there you have it. What about you? Tell us your answers!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Lila Lounge Pants and the Schoolhouse Tunic

Tonight I'll be teaching the Lila Lounge Pants class at Stitched with Love. I wanted a cute, easy pair of pajama pants that beginning garment sewers could make. I chose this pattern before I had tested it out (note to self, never again!)

Aren't they cute? I do think they are. And not hard to make at all. HOWEVER....

The pattern is, sadly, not well written. In fact, I rewrote the instructions so my students would have a clearer guide. The original pattern has steps missing and is very unclear. I was disappointed! 

I am happy with the finished garment however (this is the store sample which I made a month or so ago). I have added instructions to finish the seams with french seams which makes the pjs neat and sturdy for washing.

The other class I will be teaching beginning next month is the Schoolhouse tunic. I first made this pattern in 2011 and it was love at first make! I have made many since then, including this store sample....

As you can see, it fit Ally perfectly and put a smile on her face. Of course I made a second one, exactly like this one, and mailed it off to her for fall. And a new one for me to wear too.....
 I love it made up in teal grunge. Now if only cool weather would arrive here in Texas so I can wear it! The calendar says fall but the thermostat says otherwise.

What have you been sewing?