Monday, July 22, 2013

FWQ 13

Moose and I made a muslin of the Wiksten tank the other night.
I cleared off my desk in order the trace the pattern and then Moose didn't want to give it back.
After moving him to the ironing board, I decided to work on the next Farmer's Wife block.
This one is called Buckwheat.
I love how it came out!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Shopping spree

This was the second day of the Southern Wisconsin shop hop. Jaime and I went to 5 different shops! I think I might go to another next weekend, but certainly won't make it to all 13.

I planned to pick out white/cream and black prints for my Single Girl, but I only found about 4 prints I really liked. So, that decision is made. I will use the white sheets I already have.

Instead, I got some more 30s prints (note to self: JJ Stitches has a good variety at the moment), some penguins for Christmas stockings, and a couple blues to use in a fish quilt of some sort. There are 2 quite cute projects of the same theme I would like to try.
I also bought some Best Press. I think it might make tiny stars and the Grinch quilt easier.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Bragging Rights

I won a bundle of Jeni's new line, Nordika! (Picked it up tonight!)

Sunday, July 14, 2013

In which there is not a clever title

My Single Girl is coming along faster than I might have expected.
Perhaps it's due to my helper?
Anyway, since it's getting close to the time I actually need to make a decision, I've been debating whether to buy a bunch of different black/white/cream prints or just go with white. I like the idea of a varied background, but it would be more expensive and time consuming.
Option A: Varied patterns, more expensive
Option B: Plain white, less expensive
Which would you choose?

Monday, July 1, 2013

Busy bee

That actually might be a cool name for a quilting bee - for busy people of course. When I have time, I'll get it started...

Tonight I am skipping yoga because I have a headache and Excedrin is not helping very much. I might have tried harder to force myself to go anyway if my friend Katy was planning to go as well, but she went to an earlier class and let me off the hook.

In sewing news, I've completed the ring portion for 5 single girl blocks! Here is what my strategy looks like:
I cut 3.5" strips from each DS fabric (plus 1 other that seems to fit right in). Then I folded them and laid them in a circle resembling the pieces of the ring. It turned out I bought more fabric than I needed... I'm not entirely sure how that happened, but since it did, I decided to just use all of them and switch out a few each block. (Confession: I bought a new blue dot from JoAnn's yesterday to add in too.)
I traced and cut templates out of freezer paper. This is working out just as well as I imagined! First I iron the template to a fabric strip, then I cut it out. Once I've cut all the pieces for a ring, I peel off the templates as I sew them together. Finally, I shuffle the fabrics around and repeat. 
In the interest of curbing my spending on this quilt a little bit, I've decided to go with a white background. Or at least, I'm leaning in that direction. I suppose I still won't make the final call until I have finished getting the scrappy parts ready. I'm more certain that I will use straightish line quilting for it when we come to that.

The guild meeting was last Wednesday night. It kicked off a couple new activities (block lotto and challenges). We all received kits for EPP since our summer challenge is hand work. Last night I stitched up my little hexies and tonight perhaps I'll assemble them into flowers. For some reason it has reignited my interest in doing some knitting. Namely, the beekeeper's quilt, which is made of knit hexagons. I'm intrigued by the idea even though I'm not sure the finished product is quite my style.

Monday, June 17, 2013

FWQ 12

I meant to post this a few days ago, but work and house hunting took up a lot of my time last week.

This is one of the most complex blocks I've made so far.
I'm very pleased with how well my corners lined up. I was careful to press seams opposite directions while I was assembling the block which made it much easier than if I'd pressed seams open everywhere.
Broken Sugar Bowl

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Tuckered out

Today I've been cooking a lot. It probably would have been better for the electric bill if I had sewn instead. We turned the air conditioner on for the first time this season.
Want to see what I made?
We're having an Italian feast tonight:
Pesto Chicken Lasagna
Tozzetti served with Vino Santo (recipe from Bon Appetit)
I also made our favorite chocolate cookies. I use Hershey's special dark cocoa so they're extra delicious.
Rocky Road Garganchewas
The weekend wasn't completely devoid of fabric goodness though. I stitched up a name tag yesterday for the MadMod June challenge using lots of little squares.
I also contemplated starting my single girl, making another lotto block, and/or simply picking up all the fabric laying about on the carpet. Perhaps after dinner...

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Home Sweet Apartment

It's kinda nice to be back. I loved getting to spend some time with my parents last week (on the fringes of a work trip), but it was a pretty crazy week. This weekend Will and I have been recovering by sleeping in and sticking around the apartment for the most part. We took some time out to see 3 more houses and take a walk at the UW Arboretum, bus nixed plans for a bike ride or hiking at parks that are further away.

Anyway, in sewing news, the guild is starting up lots of exciting things this summer, including a monthly block lottery! I'm working on my second entry already!
Color combo 1
Color combo 2
We also allowed Moose out to see what he would do about a nearby squirrel - turns out, not much.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

FWQ 11

Finished up this block last week. I like it a lot. I particularly like the gradation of the neutrals.

It came from my wanting to use bits of linen, but not actually having quite enough. In fact, from the original linen pieces I could only have cut 5 or 6 of the necessary pieces. I like things to be orderly though (most of the time), so I decided to cut 4 pieces from each of 4 different neutral solids/near solids.
I think this block would make a really cool quilt. Maybe I'd make the pieces slightly bigger so I wouldn't need so many of them to get a decent size. Hmm...
The seams started to get bulky at the end, but not too terrible.
One hundred blocks to go. :)

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Grinchmas in May

Yesterday I made a map of the Grinch quilt layout. I don't want to have square blocks - they'll wind up being triangles and trapezoids instead.
I meant to take my bolt of muslin along to the Mad Mod sew day, but forgot it at home... Good thing I took along the last 7 medium star blocks to finish up or I wouldn't have actually been able to sew anything (without buying something new).
I'm slowly stitching away on this project - only have the little ones left:
Poll: Is it worth it to get Flickr Pro? I've apparently reached the storage limit and old stuff will not be available if I keep uploading new. I'm there are other perks as well, but I hate to wind up paying for it year after year. I might try weeding out some of the pictures I have uploaded first and see how it goes.

Purr from Moose. (I'm glad he doesn't try to get right on my lap/keyboard.)

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Up and at 'em

I'm not usually up at this hour on a Sunday, but we've got a foster cat for the summer who apparently is a morning cat. He's alternately playful and staring out the window from which he last saw his real owner.

He also keeps walking across my lap, fortunately not on the keyboard (yet).

In sewing news, I purchased a real free motion foot for my sewing machine. I tried it out last night to mediocre results. I'll need more practice, but it's not terribly fun to rip out stitches. I am starting on a smallish practice sort of project, however I still want it to look good when I finish. Dilemma.

I got the top to look alright, but the back still had some issues. It'd be nice to have stitch lengths be a little more uniform too...


Friday, April 12, 2013

FWQ 9 and 10

Pieces for block 9
This would be easier with a different half square triangle method
Pieces for block 10
All 10 blocks together

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

RIP Mini quilt

I know most people wouldn't have ransacked a completed project to scavenge scraps for a current project, but I did. This little mini quilt was sacrificed to create another 3 blocks for my latest baby sized quilt.
Scraps of Tula Pink's Prince Charming
Clearly, star blocks are one of my favorite blocks. I'm still plugging away on the vintage sheet stars too, just haven't taken pictures that actually show the progress I'm making lately.

My plan/hope is for the hypotenuse of each triangular point to fray. The other two edges are sewn into the seam.
I'm almost sure I want to do echo quilting around the stars and leave the centers blank. Does anyone else have thoughts? I'm not confident enough in my choice to actually start yet...

In the name of finishing up this little quilt, I made some online purchases. After assembling the quilt top, it seemed to require one of the pink/red fabrics from the line as binding. I found it on sale and then added some other stuff to my cart in order to get the shipping discount. I also took the opportunity to seek out Architextures.
Fat 1/8th bundle
I'm picturing something similar to The Local Quilt except with my own interpretations of modern residential architecture I learned about in college or happen to be fond of. I may even include a few buildings by my favorite architects that are not actually houses.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Springtime for Hitler

Will and I watched The Producers a few weeks ago and as I was contemplating possible spring related post titles, that song popped into my head.

I wanted to reference spring for a couple of reasons - first, it has finally arrived in Madison. I got a new bike on Saturday morning while the skies were still gloomy, but after lunch the sun emerged. Will and I live close to one of the major bike paths in the area so out we went.

I bought a Trek 7.1
The second reason spring seemed appropriate is my new 241 tote!

It really didn't take that long to put together. Here are some details I'm really pleased with:

Top stitching on the side pockets.
Interior zipper pocket that fits my phone and a pen.

Top stitching in yellow on yellow and white on neutral.

I'm excited to no longer carry my backpack to work everyday... :)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


Turns out I've been more productive recently than I gave myself credit for - I've got 2 farmer's wife blocks finished that I haven't shown you yet!

Here's the fabric I chose for Bouquet:

This one seemed really easy in comparison to the last block's tiny pieces.

I really like how this turned out and I was thrilled to start incorporating some of the fabrics from my most recent charm pack purchase.
Tonight I finished block 9 and started playing with some scraps I've had lying around for a while. I think I might rip out the beginning of a pin cushion so I can incorporate all the pieces I have from the line... It was so relaxing to leave work a little earlier than expected and then get an hour to sew. (Pictures soon, I promise!)