Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A gift and a finish!

In January, I went away for a quilting weekend with my girls. As always, we ate, quilted, and laughed a lot. I love spending time with my quilting girls!

One of my friends, Isobel, made me a yummy quilted bag:

Tiffany blue!

Isobel probably has the highest level of technical sewing skills of anyone I know. The fact that she used those skills to bless me with this bag humbles me.

As I was looking at the bag, I kept thinking it looked familiar. She showed me the pattern and I realized that I own that one (Amanda's Purse).

After the retreat, I went to my box of patterns and it was not there. So I looked on my shelf of patterns and it was not there. Then I looked on my cutting table. And my bookcase. And every other surface in my sewing room. Nothing. Days later I was in a box checking out some half-done project and I found the pattern. Why it was there I do not know, but it is so exciting to find something that is lost!

I pulled out some lovely limey scraps from my stash and pieced up this purse. I decided to show my Sweet Sixteen some love, so I quilted the purse on my baby.

If you quilt your quilts by pushing fabric through a machine, you need Machingers Quilting Gloves. Yes, you really do!

I decided that lime green fabrics deserved some whacky quilting:

After installing a zipper, discovering that the zipper was broken, and then un-installing the zipper, I finally finished the purse (serious amounts of time elapsed):

I have different applique projects in my two lovely bags. I will think of my darling Isobel every time I touch either one.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Design Wall Monday

A bug is running through the internet quilting community. Have you caught it? I have.

It is the Dresden Plate bug. I caught it from The Old Red Barn Flickr group. Deb from Works in Progress has a great tutorial on how to make these blocks. If you check the date of the tutorial, you will see that this bug took several months to incubate. Now that it has caught me, though, I have a very serious case and may never recover:

Is that cute or what? I am just auditioning the 4-patch center; it may be replaced with a solid circle eventually.

Head on over to Judy's blog to see what everyone else is doing.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


In February, I took a trip to New York City (PVSD -- sigh) to visit the NYC Metro Mod Quilt Guild. Victoria, the hostess, was as lovely as ever and I met a bunch of other incredible quilters. I could practically taste the joy of quilting when I entered the meeting. Such a different guild experience for me.

Check out what they had to say about the meeting here. Read a few posts before and after, too, because there was too much wonderful quiltiness to be contained in a single blog post!

Victoria has a charity called Bumblebeans Basics. Consider making a quilt for this incredible cause. I made a quilt for them at my quilt retreat in January. It is based on a Moda Bake Shop pattern, but slightly different because I cut the first block wrong and decided I liked it that way.

A scrappy front:

And a scrappy back:

Victoria posted about this quilt and others here. (her photos of my quilt are much better than mine)

I machine bound this one at the recommendation of my real-life, in-person BFF Kim. She sent me a link to this tutorial and it worked!

Do you machine bind?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Design Wall Monday

Did you see the red and white quilt exhibit in New York City last year? I did not and I am still very sad about that.

I have one of the greatest jobs ever: I get to travel to different quilt shops and quilt shows all over North America. My travel season is from March until November, so I am packing my bags. Every year I tell myself I am going to make a memory quilt with fabric from each place I visit and each year I neglect to get organized and actually do it.

Not so this year! I am making a red and white quilt with fabric from each place I visit. I have already visited Sew Inspired in Simsbury, CT. If you have not yet been to their store, you must plan a trip soon!

I bought a lot of things at the shop, but I bought a fat quarter of red fabric and a fat quarter of white fabric. I made these two blocks:

Each block is labeled with the shop name and location:

I always remember to buy fabric wherever I go, but I hope I remember to specifically buy red and white fabrics at each shop and show so I have a great 2012 memory quilt!

Head on over to Judy's blog to see what everyone else is doing.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Some days I really love my job

When I am not working at quilt shows or quilt shops, I am home quilting for customers. Some of my favorite customers/friends are the folks at Pinwheels. Have you seen them? You probably have. I am blown away by the number of quilt shows they vend at every year! They import Daiwabo fabrics and I get to touch them all. Be jealous! (I also own a bunch of them, but don't tell my husband.)

I just finished quilting a sample for them to take to the quilt show in Hampton, VA next week. Look for them there.

Just so I won't be accused of being a tease, here is a photo (used with permission) of the latest sample. The fabrics are so gorgeous you won't be able to resist when you see them in person:

For those of you who use Daiwabo fabrics or quilt for customers who do, consider using Quilter's Choice thread. They make so many different colors and some of them blend perfectly with taupe fabrics. I used 3025 Polished Pewter and 3019 Wicker Basket in this quilt.

I just put another customer quilt on the frame. The style is completely different and it's gorgeous too. I love my job!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

My Design Wall

I am proud and excited to announce that I am current on my local quilt shop's block of the month!

This will probably be the last month I can announce my "up-to-date" status. I leave for the first quilt show of the season in fourteen days.

The quilt designer asked me to quilt the samples, but I think she only asked me because she knew I would fall in love and then have to make both quilts:

If you fell in love, too, check with the Quilt Basket to see if they have any kits left.

Head on over to Judy's blog to see what everyone else is doing.

Monday, February 13, 2012

My sweet Sweet Sixteen

I declared Sunday a work-free day. That is rare for me.

What did I do on my day of non-work? I quilted, of course.

I found an old applique block made from the leftovers of my Hidden Star Sampler:

I showed this quilt when I appeared on Quilt It! Did you see that episode? I had so much fun filming with them and I love how the show turned out. They made me sound much smarter than I really am!

Back to my Sunday sewing: I pieced the appliqued block into a small quilt (approx. 20"x 20"). I layered it with cotton batting and wool batting. I went to my lovely Sweet Sixteen and fitted it with a super-fine needle to accommodate my 100-weight thread.

I did a little bit of this:

and a little bit of that:

Question: do those gloves make my hands look fat?
Answer: I do not really mind if they do since I would not quilt without them.

I did not finish the quilt, but here is the progress so far:

Can today be a non-work day, too, so I can keep working on this little quilt?

'fraid not.

Friday, February 10, 2012

A gift keeps on giving

Quite a long time ago, I made a quilt for my friend Marla. (She liked it.) I took all of the leftover fabric and put it in a box. In the spirit of finishing things this year, I pulled out the scraps and made a tablerunner:

Please do not tell Mom about this tablerunner, though, because it is not for her. It is for my friend Karen. I made a pink tablerunner for her before she moved away. Every time I visit her, the ladies at her church say, "Oh, you are the one who made that tablerunner. She puts that on the table for every coffee hour!" It sure sounds like Karen needed a second tablerunner, right?

So, I finished the tablerunner yet I still had scraps. I turned those scraps into a Potato Chip Bag and a Wonder Wallet just in time for my trip to New York City (PVSD -- sigh).

It was a great hands-free bag for vacation, and who doesn't love those colors?

The fabric is finally gone! What old project shall I dig out next?

Monday, February 06, 2012

PVSD explained

I just spent a weekend in New York City and had a fantastic time. That is good, but it is also bad because it has been known to cause PVSD, especially on a Monday. PVSD (Post Vacation Sadness Disorder) typically presents in patients on their first days at work after a fun holiday experience. Working at my desk was challenging this morning since only a few short hours ago I was doing fun(!) and exciting(!) things in Manhattan. Oh, the sadness that is today.

My trip highlights (short version):
  • MOMA
  • Korean BBQ
  • NY Metro Mod Quilt Guild
  • Jane
  • Rockefeller Center
  • Times Square
  • Rent
  • Ramen
  • Dim Sum
Our trip motto could have been Veni. Vidi. Vittles. (translation: We came. We saw. We ate.)

I'll share more in future posts as I work my way through this dreaded PVSD.