Tuesday, March 31, 2009

March Quilting Accomplishments!

I feel like I accomplished a lot this month, but probably because I had twice as much quilting time as I did last month.
Here’s what I set out to do in March:

  • Pay it Forward Gifts - Started
  • Paul's Deer Quilt - DONE!
  • Mom and Me Loralie Design Quilts - DONE!
  • Family of Wolves Wall Hanging - DONE!
  • Paul's Wolf Wall Hanging - All pieces are SAS'ed
  • Make Crown Royal Quilts
  • Courier Bag
  • I actually got more done than was on my list.

    Finished my Star Quilt
    Made Paul’s Deer Quilt
    Made a 1-2-3 Go Purse
    Quilted my Loralie Quilt
    Made a couple Black/White Thread Bags
    Made a Pink/Brown Ironing Pad
    Made a Loralie Quilted Tablerunner
    Made Paul’s Wolf Family Wall Hanging
    Quilted Mom’s Star Quilt

    I also taught my first Beginning Machine Quilting Class which was very well received and I really enjoyed.
    Mom and I taught our 2nd Bag Ladies Class and the ladies loved the Schlep Bag!

    April will be full of fun, adventure, and lots of quilting. I leave for retreat in just 3 weeks! In anticipation of the Quilt Retreat with my peeps, I’ll be preparing my projects and finishing up a couple gifts to take along. My projects for April will revolve around getting ready to go. All UFO’s fall off the list for April.

    April Quilting Goals

    • Thangles Buck a Block
    • Ingrid Barlow Boxed Blessings – Pop Parade fabric
    • Pay it Forward Gifts
    • Sassy Bag
    • Storm at Sea
    • Courier Bag
    • Quilt UFO & Bind

    Mom’s Star Quilt

    Tonight I loaded mom’s star quilt on the frame and practiced my thread choices a bit. When I had the tension adjusted to my liking, I started quilting away. I knew I had a hitch in my track’s get along, but wasn’t sure how to fix it. Tonight I was able to adjust it and it worked a lot better. It’s not perfect, but it’s way better than before. I used a variegated red/orange/maroon/yellow Rainbows thread on top and an amber gold/orange Bottomline in the bobbin. It’s the first time I have ever had to take out the stitching because the bobbin tension came loose and didn’t have to take out the thread because there was no top tension.  Yeah! This is the first quilt I have really felt comfortable with the tension issues on.  Here’s the finished quilt. It was a kit we had at the store as our co-worker Lu made her sample out of it for the class. I helped Lu pick out the colors for hers and I just love it.

    Mom's Star Quilt 002

    This is a close up of the quilting. I did a meander all over it.

    Mom's Star Quilt 004

    This is a very close up picture of the quilting and I can tell my stitch length is getting closer and more consistent. The variegated worked really well with all the colors in this quilt. I wanted to quilt it with lime green, but it would have really stood out.

    Mom's Star Quilt 013

    Loralie Quilt Tablerunner

    I have been setting the tension on several machines and while I was doing so, I sewed together this quick little tablerunner. I finally got the top finished on Sat. night. It was supposed to be made out of a charm pack, but I didn’t have one, so I used scraps from my Loralie quilt. Since it’s all from the same line, it goes together well. I changed the way I did it and used what I had, but I’m pleased with how it turned out.


    I quilted it with a black Bottomline thread as I was testing the tension so I could quilt another project with Bottomline. I did black loops and then later this evening put the binding on. I just need to do the hand stitching on it now.

    Monday, March 30, 2009

    Paul’s Wolf Family Wall Hanging

    Tonight I finished quilting Paul’s Wolf Family Wall Hanging. This is one of Chris Bumps newer patterns and I’ve had it since Christmas, but just never got around to finishing it. Since it was part of his present. I got busy tonight and finished it. I quilted it with Bottomline dark grey on the top and bobbin. Then I used a Mettler poly variegated on the wolf. I’m really pleased with my tension and how it turned out. I got the hanger and binding on. I just have to do the hand work now.


    These are a couple close ups of the quilting, before I trimmed the threads.  I used a dark grey batik and a light grey batik.  Finished size is about 20”x30”


    Pink/Brown Ironing Pad

    Saturday I embarked on a new project. I had seen these Ironing pad/ruler/cutting mat holders at a retreat I went to and decided I wanted to make one. I used pink and brown batik and quilted it with King Tut thread.


    It went from this on Saturday, to this on Sunday:


    I still have a bit of hand sewing to do, but this is the pad folded in half. I think it will work great for when I go to sewing events.  I definitely would prefer to use a pattern, but I’m okay with how it turned out.

    Paul’s 30th Birthday

    Today was yet another blizzard/snow day in SD. We had blowing wind, lots of snow, and plenty of snow drifts. The wind blew a bit differently, so the drift is in the neighbors yard instead of behind our vehicles. I hope we can get out in the morning. 
    We celebrated Paul’s 30th birthday. He was up early, but when we realized we couldn’t go to work, we had a big breakfast. He opened his gifts and then played computer most of the day. He got the Cabela’s Big Game Hunt game and he was sure enjoying it.  We baked a chocolate cherry cake for his birthday and he grilled steaks for supper tonight. We had sweet potatoes/ apples/ marshmallows dish, oriental vegetables, and steak which was great.
    I worked on some gifts for my retreat peeps this morning and then sewed and quilted this afternoon. The pictures are uploading as we speak.  Friday night I put the borders on a wall hanging for Paul’s birthday with a wolf family on it.

    Tuesday, March 24, 2009

    Blizzard Tuesday

    We were threatened with a blizzard from as early as last week, but yesterday it started. We butchered two beef on Sun. We started at 6:30am and got done at 8PM. Then we had to drive home, so it was 11PM when we got home and put all the meat away. We have a small chest freezer completely full of 1/2 beef. Should last us most of the year. I was exhausted Mon, but went to work and we were let go at 12 noon. It was getting icy and the wind was blowing the snow/sleet around. I took a very long nap! Last night I worked on a project for my peeps at retreat. I got quite a bit done, but finished up tonight. I helped my MIL put the blocks for a quilt together today, so she was really pleased. Tonight I traced out an applique for a wolf wall hanging for Paul while I watched the SDSU/Baylor womens bb game. State lost by 2 points, but it was an awesome game and I'm so proud of them. I also cut out the strips to work on some Thangles. I love a blizzard day, but I'm glad to be going back to work tomorrow.

    Black White Thread Bag

    Friday I finished up a couple bags. One for me, one for a store sample. I didn't like the handles on the one on the left, so today I took it apart and moved the handles. I'm much happier with it. I quilted loops on both bags with a verigated black/white Isacord thread.

    Friday, March 20, 2009

    Ready for the Weekend!

    I'm so ready for the weekend! I've had an incredibly busy week at work and am looking forward to working at my other job tomorrow. Since it's National Quilting Day, we have a special day planned at the store. Tonight I'm hoping to get a bit more done on my quilted tote bag. It's just going so slowly and I want to get it done! I'm also working on a special project for my peeps which I can't reveal yet, but they are coming along nicely. Only 1 month 2 days till quilt retreat!
    Paul and I are headed to my parents Sat. night. Sunday we are doing our annual butchering with the whole family. It's going to be a very long day, as we are doing two beef this year. It will be worth it to have several hundred pounds of fresh meat in the freezer for the coming year.

    Thursday, March 19, 2009

    Moda Bake Shop

    Since I found out about the Moda Bake Shop, it has become one of my regularly read blogs. This week I saw this cute tablerunner Petits Fours made out of a charm pack. Since I don't actually own any charm packs, I used the next best thing... my Loralie scraps. I cut 80 1.5x5" strips last night from my leftovers. I'm planning to sew them together when I get home tonight, so I can test the pattern and see if I like it.
    We have this new line by Moda "Objects of My Desire" by Sandy Gervais and we got both charm packs and layer cakes as well as coordinates from this line. I'm really looking forward to using this charm pack, but I want to check out this pattern with scraps before I make it out of a charm pack. I'm thinking a purse for my MIL out of it too. We'll have to see if she likes it.
    This is the charm pack.
    OofDesire Charm Pack
    This is one of the coordinates to go along with it.
    Objects of Desire2

    Tuesday, March 17, 2009

    New Retreat Projects

    This weekend I started gathering up projects I plan to work on at retreat. My first is a Thangles Buck a Block. I got the light aquamarine for the background, dark teal for the stars, and purple for outer pieces. The bear moose fabric will be borders and maybe squares in between or something. Who knows what will happen? I just love the fabrics. I'm bound and determined to learn half square triangles.
    My second project and the one I'm most looking forward to is Boxed Blessings by Ingrid Barlow. She's a SD designer and I love her modern patterns. I'm using the Pop Parade line from P&B that we just got in, the fat quarters are my blocks, and the swirly is for the inner blocks and binding.
    This is the pattern I'm using. Mom picked it up at the shop Ingrid works at. I first heard about her through my friend Nich. Nich works with Ingrid's husband, so I sent my mom on a wild goose chase to get one of her patterns for me. She got 3! I may do the other one at retreat too, but we'll have to see.
    I'm getting so excited for quilt retreat now! I just need to get this cut out and ready to send.

    Monday, March 16, 2009

    Loralie Quilted

    This quilt has been a long time in the making, literally! I've probably had most of the fabrics for 2+ years. I would collect more each time I went to Sioux Falls and mom would collect too. During quilt retreat in Jan. we both designed a quilt using the panels and accent fabrics. The girls made me sash mine, but because of the red heart sashing, I finally conceded and did sashing. I finished the top at retreat, but had yet to quilt it.
    I put a bunch of blocks together for the backing and finished the back Thurs. night. I loaded the quilt Friday night and did a pass, then more on Sat., more on Sun. and I finally finished it tonight. I used Isacord verigated black/gray/ white on top and masterpiece black on the back. I was having lots of tension issues, so finally switched to bottomline on the bottom. In reading Jill's post, I remembered I had black bottomline and then I talked to Jen and she suggested using it. It made all the difference in the world. It's not perfect, but I'm happy with how it turned out. I think I'll go back to my King Tut.
    Here's a bit of the up close quilting.

    Wednesday, March 11, 2009

    Aunt Eva Revisited Quilt Binding

    One of my coworkers made this quilt several months ago when we first got this tulip line in and it's been back from the quilter for a while, but she's had some health issues and hasn't been able to work on it. I offered to square it up and put the binding on for her, so she sent the fabric to the store, Paul picked it up, and tonight I put it on. It's about a queen size quilt so it took me about an hour and a half to put it on, but I know she will really appreciate it. I would have done the hand sewn binding too, but she has plenty of time to sit and do it, so I'll get it back to the store tomorrow so someone can take it to her and she can work on it while she's off work.

    1-2-3 Go Purse

    Sunday after work I prepared for the class I was teaching Mon. night. Then I set to work on this 1-2-3 Go purse from the Spring 2009 issue of Quilts and More. It was super fast and easy and I was done in under an hour. I used some fabric from the Moda line by Chi Moi and deco craft bond interfacing and I really liked it for purses.

    Paul's Deer Quilt

    This weekend my goal was to get Paul's Deer quilt done. I had the blocks all sashed, so Friday night I cut all the big sashing pieces, and put the entire top together, except for the top and bottom borders. I got up early Sat. morning and put the final borders on, so I could show it to a couple ladies at the shop on Sat. I bought thread and backing and went home Sat. night after work to quilt it. I couldn't believe after I loaded it, that I forgot the thread at work. I had a spool of it, so I started. I got all but the last two inches or so quilted before running out of thread. I finally just decided to cut it off a bit and no one would be the wiser if I hadn't said anything. I'm a bit unhappy with the tension, but I think I finally got that problem figured out.
    Tonight I finally got a chance to put the binding on it. As soon as it was done, Paul promptly put it on the bed and went to bed, so this is the finished quilt on the bed, already in use. He loves it. I increased the blocks to 8 1/2" squares from the pattern and adjusted accordingly. I have enough to make a second quilt, so someone in my family or friends might get one just like it.

    Tuesday, March 10, 2009

    I taught my first quilt class!

    The past two Monday nights I taught Beginning Machine Quilting at the LQS where I work. I had an amazing class and my students learned a lot. The first night we discussed machines, settings, needles, threads, battings, quilting techniques, and I showed a variety of each. I also showed other items, spray baste, safety pins, kwik klip, stencils, marking tools, dry erase board, and bicycle clips. Then we sat down and did echo quilting, cross hatching, and stitch in the ditch quilting. The students used the walking foot, which was a new experience for several. One even said she'll never go back... She loved it that much! They each got batting samples of Hobbs 80/20, Warm & Natural, and Wool to practice on.
    Last night we discussed patterns, videos and workbooks, and I showed how to pin baste a baby quilt. We basted one of the students baby quilts in under15 min. Then they worked on decorative stitches, using the walking foot for some, but especially using verigated threads. Then it was on to FMQ. The students did excellent for their first times. They practiced, got the tension right, then moved on to stars, loops, pebbles, and hearts. They did an awesome job. I used my 6600 to show them how I FMQ and they couldn't believe I didn't use the foot pedal.
    All of the students learned way more than they expected and one even said she would take it again, so she could practice more.
    I love teaching quilting classes! Tonight mom and I are teaching Bag Ladies. It's sure to be a fun night with lots of students.

    Sunday, March 08, 2009

    Quilty Weekend

    This weekend was very quilty! Friday night I worked on piecing Paul's deer quilt. I got all but the top and bottom borders on. Sat morning I got up early and put the last borders on. After a busy day at work, I spent the evening quilting it. I got it all done and just need to put the binding on it, which I'll probably end up doing tomorrow night. Paul went fishing this weekend and took the camera, so when he gets back, I'll have to take a picture. Tonight after work I cleaned up my sewing room, practiced my FMQ and packed for class tomorrow night. Then I made a cute purse from the Quilts and More magazine. It went together in less than 2 hours.
    This is a busy week for me. I teach the second half of Beginning Machine Quilting on Mon. night and mom and I teach Bag Ladies Club Tues. night.

    Thursday, March 05, 2009

    Happy Birthday from Jen!

    Last week Jen sent me the most awesome birthday gifts. I was so excited for the box to be coming that I had my hubby check the mail. When I got home from work, he said it hadn't arrived. I figured it would be here on Fri. then. During supper he pulls out the box from the closet and gives it to me. It was just like Christmas morning opening my gift.
    Jen sent me a Stitchin Chicks bag, a block roll up, a potato bag, needle holder, and scissor lanyard. I've already used the scissor lanyard several times and just have to remember not to pull on it when I'm cutting, since I'm used to a pulling clip. There were needles in the case and I've used both the machine and hand needles. I took my gifts to class on Sat. and the girls just loved them. Since the fabric is one we don't have at the store, everyone was digging it. Thank you so much Jen! I love it all!
    Birthday Presents 002

    Monday, March 02, 2009

    February Quilting Accomplishments

    I feel like I got a lot accomplished in February, even though I only got 56 hours of quilting time in during the month. I worked on all but one of my goals, and only 2 didn't get finished. I have figured out what I'm doing for the Pay it Forward gifts, so I at least have a plan for them now. I also worked on Paul's Deer quilt and got a few rows of it done.
    Here are my goals and what I accomplished:
    Quilt block Sample - DONE!
    Go Green Bag - Quilting Themed - DONE!
    SampleSchlep Bag - Sample DONE!
    Pay it Forward Gifts
    Star Quilt - Class using purple/teal/aqua/lavendar - DONE!
    Paul's Deer Quilt - Cut Out with two rows done

    In addition, I was able to get three other projects finished.
    Burp Cloth to go with Baby Boy Quilt
    Construction Baby Quilt
    Mini Miranda

    Since I'm not sure how much I'll get done in March, I'm going to keep my goals very light and see what I get finished.

    Paul's Deer Quilt
    Backing for Loralie quilt
    Moda bag
    Pay it forward gifts
    Buy and cut kits for retreat

    Other projects to be done:
    Family of Wolves Applique Wall Hanging
    Paul's Wolf Wall Hanging - All pieces are SAS'ed
    Make Crown Royal Quilts
    Courier Bag

    Sunday, March 01, 2009

    Star Quilt Finished

    In February as a present to myself, I took a Star Quilt Class from Lu at the store. She has done numerous star quilts and to take any of the advanced classes, I needed to take the beginner class. I had this fabric in my stash for another project, but decided to use it for thsi quilt. It's 46" square. I finished the top on Sat. and quilted it on Sun. I love the background fabric, but that's not easy to see in this picture. I put the binding on and just need to finish the hand work, but I'm so happy with how it turned out. The next class we're hoping to have a color lesson, because I'm not truly happy with my color selections.
    Star Quilt 003
    I stippled it with a bluish/purplish King Tut in the dark areas and a lavendar verigated King Tut in the purple area. I used a Dream Wool bat in it, so I'm anxious to see how it washes up.
    Star Quilt 005