Friday, October 29, 2010

blogger's quilt festival--a charity quilt

charity quilt lavender and brown
I made this quilt for a charity project that the KCMQG has been working on over the last few months. We are making baby quilts that will be given to NICU babies (to be taken home and kept) at a local hospital. I made the quilt top and did the binding on this quilt, and it was quilted by the wonderfully talented Angela Walters, who blogs at Quilting is my Therapy and does lots of amazing things with her quilting.

This main challenge for me when putting this quilt together was dealing with the limited number of fabrics. I like to use lots of colors and fabrics when I make quilts, and this quilt only has 5 different fabrics total. I really enjoyed making the improvised blocks--I wanted to make blocks that looked balanced and went well together, but I also tried to use up my scraps as I went. :)

Here are some close-ups of Angela's quilting. It is so beautiful! I need to find out what kind of batting she used because I really like how it fluffed up after being washed.
quilting close-up 1

quilting close-up 2

quilting close-up 3

quilting closeup 4

Here's a little sneak peek of most of the KCMQG charity quilts. Over the next couple weeks I'm planning on sharing photos of each quilt too. (We will have over 30 quilts to donate when we are all done... getting close!)
charity quilts
Apparently some of the Modern Quilt Guild leaders have some kind of friendly competition going on and I'd like stick my nose in and invite and encourage challenge the other Modern Quilt Guild folks to find a need in their communities and make quilts for a local charitable cause. Let's use our talents, our love of fabric and quilting, to bring some love and comfort to others in need!

Now if you don't already know about this, please visit Amy's Creative Side because she's hosting her 4th Blogger's Quilt Festival this week! It's a great opportunity to see amazing quilts and meet new quilting and blogging friends. Thanks so much to Amy for all your hard work putting this together!

Amy's Creative Side - Blogger's Quilt Festival

Sunday, October 24, 2010

spooky quilt contest--vote for me, please!

Gen X Quilters Spooky Quilt Contest

AnneMarie at Gen X Quilters is hosting a Spooky Quilt contest, and I've entered the Little Witch quilt I made last year.

Halloween doll quilt
This quilt was made for a mini quilt swap at; I should have made a twin of it to keep! I guess I can still do that one of these days if I really want to.

I would love it if you head over and vote for me. Or for someone else, if you like their quilt better. The winners get some cold, hard, fabric!

Also--last year when I made this quilt, I wrote up a tutorial on how to make the little wonky pumpkin quilt blocks. They are pretty easy, and cute too, I think. I'd love to know if you sew one up!

Friday, October 22, 2010


I spent some time this week making quilt blocks.
bee blocks for Block Swap 2, Sept 2010
bee block for block swap 2, Oct. 2010
A few for my bees. I started my very first Dresden plate block as well, but it's not ready to show yet.
blocks for Grandma's quilt
And I made 4 of these blocks. The others were made a few (or more) months ago. My husband's grandfather passed away 2 1/2 years ago and I offered to make a quilt from his shirts for Grandma M. I've been preoccupied with other things for a while but this project has finally made it to the top of my list again! I hope she will like this; I've been afraid that it might be a little too modern or not traditional enough for her tastes, but I think I'm sticking with it anyway. I will probably look for a nice dark red (and traditional) floral for the back though, which seems like it might be just her thing.

I'm linking up at Sew & Tell Fridays, go check out all the cool things people have made this week!

Monday, October 18, 2010

finished quilt top!

Here's my 9-patch quilt top, all done!
9-patch quilt top
I made it following the quilt-along at crazymomquilts. I have batting for it but still need to get backing and binding fabrics!

Next up--blocks for Grandma Kathryn's quilt. (If you know her, don't tell, ok?)

I've made some progress on L's costume... found a tinkerbell t-shirt at Savers that I'll be cutting up and making into something really cool for her. I can't believe I found it, it's just perfect for her costume.

Also wanted to share--I really loved this post over at zen habits today. I love the idea of relaxing and focusing on doing what you truly enjoy.

Friday, October 15, 2010

KC Modern Quilt Guild

Last night was the KC  Modern Quilt Guild meeting. (Yay, we have a website!) We were lucky to have Cherri House as a truly inspiring guest speaker. She showed us several quilts from her new book, City Quilts: 12 Dramatic Projects Inspired By Urban Views, told us some great stories about her quilting life, and had time for lots of questions and answers, too. I'm so glad I was there to hear her speak, and to chat with her a bit afterwards, too.

This meeting was also the early "deadline" for quilts for our group charity project. We've been making baby quilts that will be given to families at a local NICU. So far we have 25 quilts (a few of these still need binding).
NICU quilts1
NICU quilts 2
NICU quilts 3

Aren't they beautiful? I will take individual photos of all the quilts eventually, but wanted to show how we had them displayed last night. There are a few more that we are waiting on, and then they will be labeled and delivered to the babies. I can't wait!

There are a couple other things I wanted to share from some of our super cool guild members:
This quilt was made by Alex of Teaginny Designs, and she's created several free tutorials for making the little vehicle blocks. Check out her Busytown quilt, too! 

Also, I wanted to show you Lauren's Halloween birdy fabric.
Isn't that cute? You can buy some, if you want, at her Spoonflower shop. (There are 4 other colors.)

Next month at our meeting we will be having (the first of 2? maybe?) a holiday party complete with handmade gift exchange. I need to figure out what I'm going to make!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

my first pettiskirt

Here's my first attempt at a fluff-free fairy pettiskirt for Halloween:
Don't you love her hat?

I used the free tutorial from, but I changed the proportions. The waistband layer is 1.5 times her waist measurement; tier 1 is 2x the width of the waistband layer, and tier 2 is 2x the width of tier one. This is plenty of skirt for this little girl. I had a 24" piece of the shiny fabric from the remnant bin, and I used all of it. 

Here's the spinning shot:
action shot--spinning
The waistband layer looks a bit lumpy; I used a quilting solid I had on hand for that and it doesn't drape like the fabric recommended in the tutorial. Anyway, that will be covered by a shirt most of the time she wears it so it's not really a problem.

Also, I need to figure out what to do about the hem. For now the insane fraying is kept slightly in check by a wide zigzag. I tried to do a sort of wide rolled hem on the serger and it didn't work at all. Anyone have any suggestions for me? I could buy some narrow lace or something to sew onto that edge, but I'd love to hear your ideas.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

fabric, Halloween ideas, 9-patch progress

I've been making progress on my 9-patch quilt. I just might be able to have it done in time for the next Blogger's Quilt Festival. (It starts at the end of the month, are you ready?) I got the quilt top all pieced together yesterday, and pressed all those sashing seams too. There are 2 borders left and today I got the pieced borders all together, still need to take them to the ironing board.
border strips for 9-patch

The other day I got some more Meadowsweet fabric. It's so pretty. One day I hope to make a strawberry quilt for my girl with this strawberry fabric and maybe some of her baby clothes that had strawberries on them. (If I can bear to cut them up, sigh.)
meadowsweet fabric
And I've been thinking about Halloween. My middle child wants to be Indiana Jones and I'm hoping to find pants and a jacket at the thrift store. I found a hat on Amazon that I think will work for him. My oldest still hasn't decided what he's going to be, but we'll figure something out, I'm sure. And for my girl, well I was pretty sure she was going to be a girl garden gnome but then I got to thinking about how it would be cute if I put fairy wings on her with a gnome costume, and then I just decided she will probably really love it if I have her be a fairy. I wanted to make this skirt but I found some shiny lavender fabric in the remnant bin at JoAnn's today.
sparkly fabric for fairy skirt
I think I will make a tiered skirt from it and hopefully that will be good. I also found light green wings today; I might decorate them with some purple too. I have an idea for a top; you'll have to wait and see what that might be.

How are your Halloween preparations coming along? Are you making any costumes this year?

Friday, October 08, 2010

finally, some finishes!

finished leaf quilt, #2
I feel like I've finally made a kind of dent in my UFO pile! I finished up my little leaf quilt earlier this week--love it!

for Quilts for Kids
And I finally got this all done for Quilts for Kids. I washed and dried it after this photo was taken and now its all soft and crumply.

half of my 9-patch rows
This isn't a finish but I'm making good progress! This is half of the rows all pieced together. You can see I didn't press all the seams yet but I will, don't worry. After all 10 rows are together there will be a border of pieced squares and one final 2.5" white border. It will take me a few more days of work, which is going to be interrupted by something else that has a deadline, but I'm going to finish it! Soon!

fall mantle
I was at Target the other day buying a white t-shirt for an unspecified art project for the 5th grader, and I stopped by the dollar area and found these leaves and decided to get them. Yesterday I strung them on thread, with a knot tied in between each leaf to keep them spaced out sort of evenly. I did it in two pieces and used doubled strands of threads. They're tied together in the middle.

I am so excited to be able to link up to Sew & Tell again, it's been a while! Stop by and see what others have finished this week!

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

dutch oven cooking, and a quilt dream

dutch oven cooking
I've had these dutch ovens since my forest service days. Well, maybe I only had one back then. My roommates and I had a few really fun campfire cookouts at our CCC era forest service summer home. Great big tin foil dinners and apple crisp made in the dutch oven.

We recently got the dutch ovens cleaned up and ready to use; they had been neglected and rusty but it wasn't that hard to get them back in cooking order. 
dutch oven pizza
The pizza was really good but a bit overdone in the center. I definitely want to try making it again.
dutch oven brownies
And the brownies were perfect. Box brownies with added chocolate chips. My husband did most of the work, all I did was mix the brownies. Maybe we'll make something yummy in them again this weekend?
The other night I went to sleep thinking about this quilt. So yesterday I went through all my favorite quilt patterns saved from old magazines and found it:
quilt dreams...
It's from American Patchwork and Quilting, December 2001. I just love the color scheme, the blues, yellow/golds, raspberry pink and a bit of green. I love the scrappy background fabric too but honestly if I make this I'll probably use one solid fabric. And I really love that soft pink border.

The finished sawtooth star blocks are 5" square, and the pattern provides instructions for making 244 of them. Yeah, that's too many. I'm thinking about it, maybe I'll make a small version of it, or maybe I'll size up the block to 6 inches. I did the math and I could make a similar size quilt out of only 147 six-inch blocks. That sounds a lot more doable than 244. Does anyone want to do a quiltalong? Maybe in a couple months?

Saturday, October 02, 2010

where I'm at now... UFOs

I finished quilting the pink and green quilt today.
quilting finished
At the end, I was working on making the loops bigger. Maybe you can tell if you look close, down in the bottom left corner there. I haven't made the binding yet; I'll probably do that on Monday.

Here's another project I've been working on. Previously seen as a pile of fabric here.
leaf quilt 2 almost done
I wanted to have this finished before I showed it, but it's not there yet. I need to sew the binding down and do another round of hand quilting just inside the binding edge.

Here's the twin quilt: 
maple leaf quilt
This was a gift for a friend's birthday last month, and I had to make two... because I wanted one for myself and also because I make my half-square triangles in pairs and would have had extras if I only made one. Actually, I have extras anyway.

So--I think I'm going to extend my UFO week until the end of Monday and see if I can actually finish a couple more things and shrink my works-in-progress list. I am going to make myself a skirt next week though, and it's a new project. I already bought a sweater to go with it....

Friday, October 01, 2010

half way quilted

a little more than half way done

Plugging away.
I got the pajamas made too, didn't get a picture yet.
And I bought stripey binding fabric today.

Oh yeah, if you want to enter to win some cool games, go visit Jan's blog. My boys and I reviewed Mastermind and Mastermind Towers for her--pretty fun!