Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sometimes I make other stuff

I like to make cards, they are quick and done.  (Quicker than a quilt anyway and much quicker than making a whole scrapbook).  Everyone loves to get a card in the mail.  I know I do.  I try to make more than one when I finally settle on something, if I've gone to all the trouble of setting everything out.
Sympathy Card

Quilt blocks and colors often inspire a card.

Aqua and Red Blocks

Aqua and Red in a card, first attempt.  I wasn't entirely happy with the way this one turned out.  Needed more oompphh.  But it was a beginning.

Like with a quilt, you often have to play around to find what suits you.

Second attempt has a little more flair, more embellishments and added grey.

Get well card for a man
 I love birds and I have fabric in abundance with bird prints, like this in this block for my Quilt Around the World II Bee. I chose a color theme from Design Seeds, and the bird fabric fit right in.

I made two of these cards for relatives that had birthdays in June.  Now, my cards almost always come late, that way they stand out.   I'm playing with bleach in this one.  I have to get Q-tips (how can I be out of Q-tips?) to control the bleach a little better.  Now card and stamping stuff has been put away so that I can go back to sewing.  Card making may be quicker than making a quilt, but it sure makes a bigger mess.  I could hardly think that was possible, but it is.

If you love card making or stamping, you can visit my site for Stampin' Up.  

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Zippidy Doo Dah

  • Husband:  What is in that package you got today?
  • Me:  Zippers.
  • H: Zippers?
  • Me:  Yes.
  • H:  How many zippers? that was a pretty big package for just zippers.  
  • Me:  Umm, a few.  Oh, plus there were zipper pulls.  And maybe a little fabric.  
  • H:  Are you going to start sewing clothes now, because I just don't see why you need a couple dozen zippers.  
  • Me:  I don't need them.  I just need to have them on hand for when I do need them.  For some things I am going to make.  In the future.  That I'll use zippers.  And since I haven't made it yet, I didn't know what color, so I got all the colors.
  • H:  So, you bought a couple dozen zippers....
  • Me:  And pulls.
  • H:  And pulls for some time in the future when you might need them.  
  • Me:  Yes.  I'm going to make stuff that requires zippers.
  • H:  Stuff?
  • Me:  Stuff.  
  • H:  .........walks away......probably to bang ahead against wall.
  • Me:  Maybe you shouldn't get the mail anymore. (loudly so he can hear over the banging)

Awesome zippers I ordered from Zip It!  They came super fast.

What won't I be able to make with this rainbow of zippers?

And pulls, don't forget the pulls!

And just because I had to show him I need zippers for stuff I'm going to make, I made a zip pouch.  A zip pouch which required a zipper and a pull.

I like the back of zip pouches to be linen.  I'll need more linen because I have a lot of zippers now.   I'll have to warn him about that package.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

I wish I never......

I caved.  I joined Pinterest.  Follow me if you want, I'm pinning stuff like this
I always wanted to be Laura.

And this
Or went to a quilt retreat

Ok, I am pinning quilty stuff too.
I knew Pinterest was going to be a time vortex from which there was no escape, and I was correct.  

I also wish I never started reading
Well, I don't really wish I didn't start, I just wish I could put it down.  Another time vortex from which I can't escape.  I saw the shows, and now I'm afraid I won't stop reading until I've finished all 5 or 6 books.  Not sure how many there are.  I love to read, and usually when I get into the book, I can't stop.  This is taking up all my sewing time!  Pinterest, damn you!  and Mr. Martin, well, you can just keep writing.  At least it isn't Jeal Auel, where I waited a decade for a sequel.  

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Sisters Quilt Block Challenge

I was on the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show site a couple of months ago, its a show I would like to go to one day.  All those quilts hanging from buildings, fences, windows, scrumptious viewing!  I noticed there were a couple of challenges, and one I decided I could handle.  The Westminster Fibers Quilt Block Challenge.  I bought the little kit, and in it were these 4 fabrics plus one more, you are limited to these fabrics to make a block, no additions, but you can take away.  I then promptly forgot all about the block challenge and the little kit I paid for.  I was doing some cleaning this weekend in the sewing room and came across the packet, just in time as the challenge block was due June 15.  

So, my idea was to make an owl on the block, machine applique, which was permitted as well as embellishments.  Because, really, these fabrics together?  It was a challenge to figure out how  time they could all go together,  I'm sure once I see all the other challenge blocks, I'll go, yeah, why couldn't I think of that?  Now, does this block look like an owl?  My idea morphed (see my previous post  about bee blocks morphing while in progress).  It was the fabric at the top of this elephant, while I was playing around with the fabrics, the curve reminded me of an elephants back.  My owl is now an elephant.  

Some fusing, some stitching, some embellishments, do I think the elephant is wearing a gold medal?  Or is it reins for a circus?  Maybe a fashionista elephant with a necklace?  I don't know, it is up to the viewer.  The block is 9 1/2" square.  The block won't be returned unless I'm a finalist and  I'm not sure if I'll know if I'm a finalist or not.  You didn't submit your phone # or email, just your address.  

I'm not expecting much from this block contest (I am keeping my fingers crossed, though), but I participated and that was the part that was important to me.  Too often I see challenges and contests, and I know it is something I can do, but I procrastinate (see above) and end up not having enough time to get my challenge finished.  This time I feel good about myself for being part of the event, even if I can't actually be there.    

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Bee Blocks That Torture Me

I've been in too many to count a few Bees on Flickr now, and I am not an inexperienced quilter.  But there are Bee Blocks that just stump me.  IT IS NOT YOU - it is me, 100%.  Take this block for example.  I saw many blocks made by me Bee Mates, they did it, they even made two, I should be able to do it. There was a tutorial with lots of pictures.  I must have seam ripped this block enough times to shred the fabric.  It is a gorgeous block, I have conquered it, I will never make another because I want to stay sane and live to sew another day.  If someone else picks this block, the fabrics are going straight back.  

And this one, Easy-Peasy, loads of people pick it, there is a very good tutorial.  This is mine after I used up all most of the Queen Bee's fabrics and had to dig around to find ones that were the same/similar to use for her actual block.  I love a challenge, I want to make blocks I have never made before, I want to think outside the box.  These blocks pull me back down to Earth, I make mistakes, leagues of mistakes.  

This was my second or third attempt at this block, see any difference?  Yeah, this one was the block high on bath salts.  I also cut it wrong. Twice.  I can now actually construct this block without mistakes, so feel free to chose this one.  I actually kinda like it now.  

I love my Bees, and I love having freedom to improv the block.  But when someone says, I would like a circle and a vespa in my block, I'm like Yay!  I love this block,  and then it takes me two months to come up with an idea that sticks.  It was a good idea, and I had fun putting this together, but when you just hand over the reins, I go through forty-seven ideas before I can settle on one, and then it usually changes while I'm working on your block, so the block takes me an extra two days, when I post I'm working on your block tonight -that means and the next night and the next night.  Again, this isn't you, it is me, my slow thought process, so if you say, oh,  you just pick something fun, your block will may be late, and there may be crying and a bit of head banging on wall involved.  

OMG, this gorgeous Christmas Tree, she probably wanted it before the next Christmas.  

And here we are at another late Bee Block.  Again great tutorial, I was able to use my own fabrics, I am an excellent piecer/ block maker, and the seam ripper is my friend.  

I made these sections three different times not keeping the fabrics the same in the chevron rows.  Three completely and totally different times.  I threw my rotary cutter at the wall.  Twice.  In my mind anyway, not for real, because I know I will really need the rotary later and my husband would go into convulsions if there were dents in the walls.  (those mini's are good for something, just saying.)  So, if you are screwing up your bee blocks, you are not alone.  I find that after screwing up a block twice, it is best to just turn the machine and iron off and walk away for awhile, sometimes a couple of days or a week.  And then when you come back, you can smile and not through gritted teeth at that pile of fabrics, and push them to the bottom of the Bee blocks pile and make someone a four patch.    

Friday, June 8, 2012

Bliss is a Bolt of Kona White

How much Kona White do you go through?  I am ALWAYS running out, ordering 2 yards here, buying 2 yards there.  I say, enough of that b/s!  I called my LQS that carries Kona, and asked if they had a bolt of white, they did, so I snatched it up.  I will never run out again!  At least not for a week.  Maybe two.

I was so excited to hold, rub, and pet my bolt, I took it for a little walk around the yard.  She loved the butterfly bush and day lilies.  But then I took her inside and brushed her off, there was a bug crawling on her and I had to real quick get her back into more sanitary conditions.  Also, she needed to be nearer the rotary cutter, I'm just saying, she looks good and all, but she is going in a lot of projects.

I was wondering what everyone else's sewing table looks like when they have a project in progress.  This doesn't even show the other side, which was also full.  or the floor, also full, and ironing board, umm, also loaded down.  I was working on my Modern She Made swap in this photo, it was late at night.  I love the iPad my husband gave me for Christmas, it is so much easier to have it handy for looking at tutorials and photos, rather than printing or lugging the laptop.  

This is the completed mini I made for Modern She Made swap, my partner should be receiving any second.  There were other goodies in the package, but no photos.  I have now commenced some organizing and re-arranging which was past due in the sewing room.  

I made it through some behind Bee Blocks today.  My cleaning progress inspired me to make a little mess.  These are stacked coin blocks for Shawn in my Block Party Bee.  I think I would be in a bee with any of these ladies at any time.  

Block #2 for Shawn.  She chose this Essex Linen, and I am. In. Love.  Next ordering that gets done, this will be on the list.  

I received my goodies from Jessica for Modern She Made Swap.  And O!M!G!  I totally love it.  I saw this bag in the photo stream, but never thought it would be for me, even though it is my colors and that Joel Dewberry bird, baby, so me.  Jessica so spoiled me!  I was so lucky to have her as a partner.  

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Design Seeds

Patterned Hues
There is a wonderful website called Design Seeds by Jessica.  On this site is a virtual chocolate cheesecake with strawberries, whipped topping, and hot sauce of color combinations to inspire you.  (Bonus, no calories!)

Tulip Color
All Color combinations that you could possiblly ever think of, Jessica has thought of first.  Yay for Jessica!  It's also just eye candy if you are bored and want something else on the internet to absorb your time.  
Critter Color
You can search by theme - for example I chose Autumn, and here is one that appealed to me.

Nature Fresh Hues
I'm in a new group on Flickr Quilt Around the World II, what can I say, I'm always stalking new groups to join.  This is the color palette I'm going to work with for my quilt top, Nature Fresh Hues.  I printed out the photo and matched up the solids with  my Kona Color Chart.  I have Medium Grey, Charcoal, O.D. Green, Mango and Khaki.  I'm going to send out my color inspiration with my block when it gets sent on it's way Around the World and the group will be able to see where I'm coming from.  Sort of.  At least for this block.