Friday, April 28, 2017

Beginnings and Endings

When my daughter started kindergarten I went around to area quilt shops to see if I could sew displays for them. I hit three before I found one that said yes. I was thrilled! Little did I know how that venture would snowball.
 A few months into this venture I was making a charity quilt and messed up on my math. In my attempt to fix the mistake I created a whole new quilt. I showed this to Ruth Ann, the owner of the shop and she said, "Make that into a pattern and we will sell it."
 So I did. A few more months of sewing for her and I had designed a few more patterns. My neighbor, heard what I was doing. She owned a wholesale fabric and quilting business that is now a little company you may of heard of, Riley Blake. She was having a vendor's mall and asked me to bring my patterns to see how I would do.
 I continued to sew for Ruth Ann until she retired and her daughter, Joani, took over the business. She wanted me to sew in the shop. I preferred to sew at home and bring in the quilts when I was done so we parted ways.
Fast forward  to today, Joani recently closed her store. All these beautiful tops she donated to Quilty Hugs. I just need to find tops and get busy quilting. Thanks Joani and Ruth Ann for a wonderful start and a beautiful ending.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Playing in the Mud

It's spring and I've been getting my garden ready. A few weeks ago I planted broccoli, beets and peas. Now they are starting to sprout. 
I remembered last fall Cynthia told me about some gardener's soap she had used and how great it was for washing the dirt off after gardening. I had just begun my soaping adventure and told her I would give it a try in the spring. Like a said it's spring, though a few moments ago it was snowing outside my window, spring that fickle girl. None the less I made my gardener's soap. It is full of great exfoliates to get you super clean after playing in the mud. It also has a wonderful blend of oils to keep your hands soft, and smells wonderful with a blend of citrus and basil essential oils.
I was telling my friend Carolyn about it while shopping at JoAnn's and I'll be bringing her a few bars tomorrow. She wanted some for her and her daughter. She thought it would make a great mother's day gift. I think she might be right. Find this and my other skin loving soaps here.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Tuesday Tutorial ~ Precuts

Precuts are a great invention. Especially for someone who is no so fond of cutting. There are tons of patterns, books and free tutorials available for these handy creations. Like this one from Diane of Stash Bandit. I first met Diane while working on the Scrap Squad. She is a joy to work with and so very talented.
 This charm friendly wonder came about when I needed a quilt for my nephew. It is quick and easy if you need a quilt in a pinch.
 This jelly roll friendly quilt makes a great picnic quilt.
 And this layer cake quilt looks difficult but is really a breeze.
I hope these have whet your appetite and have you itchin' to pull out your precuts and start sewing up a storm.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Moving It Forward

I've had such a pleasant time playing in my scraps. There is just something about leftover bits of fabric that speaks to my heart. Memories from past projects and the challenge of making something from those bits what's not to love? 
I not only made these blocks. But these scrappy log cabin like blocks.
 Another great thing about playing with scraps; your get the prettiest garbage.
Now it's your turn what have you been up to in the sewing room? What are you moving forward?

Friday, April 21, 2017

Finishing up

Last time I showed this quilt it was a flimsy. Now it'a quilted and bond. I love all the scrappy happiness in this quilt. The stars are leftovers from this quilt, that was also a scrap quilt. You know your a scrap quilter when you make scrap quilts from the scraps of a scrap quilt. I didn't have a real plan for them but while organizing some pre cut scraps this idea came to me. I'm pretty pleased with the results.
I quilted it on the diagonal through the rows. I used leaves, they are easy for me. Then tried the starburst in the stars. 
This next quilt is a group effort. It was made at my Quilty Hug Sew Ins. Sue cut it out. Shelly pieced it. 
I quilted with simple organic lines. Finally Sherri bond it. I like it's simplicity and fell it will work for a man. I often worry I don't make enough masculine Quilty Hugs. I need to work on that.

 After posting last week I made it to the fabric shop for matching thread and got this little wonder bond. I'm glad I held out for the matching thread. I love the way the orange binding sets off the quilt.
Dahlia pattern
Feeling pretty productive with this weeks results. Even if they were mostly done to begin with.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Piece and Love

I spent a lovely afternoon playing in my scraps. Oh, how I love spending time with my scraps. They always play so nice. I made me a bunch of nine patches and then a few string blocks. 
I also found a little time for a fun photo shoot with my All Natural Patchouli Soap. Despite my best efforts I still get dandelions in my yard. To make the best of this not so great situation I picked a bunch and made a fun peace sign to go around my soap. 
My hubby thinks I'm crazy, but since he calls me his hippy wife, I thought it fitting.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Tuesday Tutorial~ Different Size Blocks

I really like to play with scale in my quilts. Taking the same block and using it in different sizes can add interest. It may look difficult but it's really quite easy. 
 The secret is to use blocks with common multiples. My Bear Scraps quilt uses blocks with multiples of 3 (ie 3, 6, 9) This scrap busting log cabin uses 6" and 12" blocks. You could also do 5" and 10". You get the idea.
A little more difficult are my Plan B quilts. 
 Made from blocks intended for other quilts.  Test blocks because sometimes it's a good idea to make sure everything fits before you commit.  Orphan blocks, because some blocks are so fun you get carried away.  Mistakes, not failures, but lessons learned.  Healing blocks made by friends.  And scraps because when life falls to pieces remember there is always plan B.  And life is all about how you handle plan B.
These quilts use up all sizes of blocks. I like to put similar sized blocks together, add strips to build up blocks that are slightly smaller. 
 Pat Sloan has a tutorial for her method that is helpful.
These are fun quilts to make, kind of like a puzzle. If you haven't made one I would recommend it. My orphan bin is getting full. I think it's time for me to make another one.