Monday, November 8, 2010

It's been a LONG time!

I know, what in the world have I been doing? Sheesh? Or may be I'm the only one that was thinking that. HA!

I took a break from quilting for basically the entire summer. And then part of fall, too. But the holidays are coming and I needed to get my butt back in gear. And I'm so happy I did! 

I finished the 'Big Wonky Pinwheels' quilt this past weekend. I like now so much more than I did at first. 

Meatball likes it too.

I also made a baby quilt for a dear friend in Germany...

I stippled it, and I think I'm getting better...

And the back.... I'm liking white right now.

That's it for now. Hubby is trying to watch more 'Pacific' and I'm holding up the showing... More later!

Sunday, June 6, 2010


I chose all of the fabric for the quilt - a lot of the blue and green fabric and cut four 5.5 inch squares out of each one. After putting them up on the design wall, moving them from straight rows to diagonal rows and adding a few extra squares I have this:

What a fun looking quilt so far! I'm sure I'll move some prints around but I like where this is going.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Process

Ok, so I got sick and basically stopped quilting all together for a few weeks but tonight it hit me that I N.E.E.D.E.D. to quilt again! Like, right now.

There is a friend that recently had a birthday and I want to make her a quilt because I know she will love it. I found out from her boyfriend that her fav colors are blue and green. Check. She's not a fan of pink at all. Double check.

I sorted through my stash and picked out some nice shades of blue and green. The greens are more lime-greenish but I think they will work out. I don't want to spend any money to buy more fabric right now (need to save for vacation in July) so they will have to do. A couple of the prints have both colors in them, too.

So now I have to figure out the pattern. I always think New Wave quilt first these days, followed by patchwork. I don't really want to do New Wave because of the white sashing and I don't have enough fabric of another color to swap for the white. Unless I use one of the lime-greenish ones? I'm not sure.

(Short pause to check this out...brb)

Hmm, yeah I have enough but I don't think it will look right. Maybe I can make a New Wave but nix the sashing? I'm not convincing myself very well. I'd rather test that brilliant plan on something I'm not planning to give away.

Maybe a brick path quilt? Yeah, I don't think that is right either. I think the simple patchwork of 5 inch squares is the way I'm going to go. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Friday, May 28, 2010

I'm still here!

Sorry for the long pause, but little ol' me got PNEUMONIA! I can't believe it, except that I feel horrible so it must be true. I'm on the up swing now, thank goodness. so I'll be back to being crafty and quilting soon enough.

Last weekend I made a couple more patchwork pillows for a friend. Her 15 m.o. has been carrying them everywhere he goes, so I'm gonna say they are a hit!

I hope everyone has a great 3 (or more) day weekend if you're in the U.S. I'm gonna spend mine sleeping if all goes as planned!!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Patchwork Pillows

Aren't they lovely?

Here they are in the (gray) sunlight I was able to catch when I got home today. 

They are similar, but not alike. Both of them have the same blue back.

I reinforced the patchwork-side of the covers with interfacing like Elizabeth from Oh Fransson! did here. I'm hoping it will help them look this nice for a while.

Training Days and Rain

This week is going to take FOR-EV-ER. I'm in a training course for a certification I want to get for my job and boy is this thing boring. Luckily I like the content. That's the only good thing I can say about it. And it gets me out of going into the office for 5 days. (which can be good or bad)

It's pouring buckets here today so being locked in (I'm joking) a basement room in the middle of the city doesn't seem as bad as it would if it were sunny out. Hopefully the weather will break so I can walk around during our lunch breaks. Here's for hoping!

This past weekend I finished two pillows for the living room. I'll post pics when I get home. They were supoer quick and easy to do and they look fantastic. I need to decide what to do to the larger ones still. I'm thinking big and bold.

I think this is the first weekend this year that I didn't start or finish a quilt. GASP. It seems wrong to say that now. It's ok, I still love you quilting. We will be back in full swing this weekend I promise.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wonky Pinwheels in Progress & completely non-quilt related banter...

You know what's funny? The fact that I assumed I would start this blog and talk less about quilting and more about random stuff. Like, we recently watched the Butterfly Effect 3 (who knew there where 3 of them) and it was not that good except for one this joke:

"What do you get when you cross a brown chicken and a brown cow? - Brownchicken browncooow" (said like that bad 70's porn music sound)

(This still makes me laugh out loud, btw)

Or that I really enjoyed Avatar even though I couldn't believe any of the hype and ditto about Twilight. Wow, this sounds a whole like like a movie blog right about now. You can tell what I do when I'm sewing on bindings can't you?

But I guess I always started this as a quilt outlet for me. A way to participate in the list of quilt blogs I read every-single-day. Thank goodness they all exist. They have made my journey through quilt discovery and learning a lot better since there is always someone answering a question I have, or showing me a new creation I can't wait to try myself.

ANYWAY, enough ramblings, back to the quilt-ness.

So I finished sewing together the top of the huge wonky pinwheels quilt today, created a pretty backing for it, pinned it all together then realized I didn't have enough thread to quilt it. Sigh. It was a good reason to by more thread, including clear this time, blades for my rotary blade and more ruler templates. I'll finish it next weekend.

Yesterday I went shopping with my friend Jane and picked up some pillow forms. Sean has been asking me to make pillows for weeks (months?) now. They were on sale this time (40% off!) so I bought two 18in. and two 16in. squares. I think I'll make the fronts small square patchworks for the 16in. ones and who-knows-what for the bigger ones. I'm sorta happy to work on them since I know I can finish at least two of them in one sitting.  Gotta love speedy projects right?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Monday, Monday...

It. Is. Done!

This weekend I finished the Odyssea Quilt:

I decided to go simple on the quilting and stitch in the ditch around the big squares and little squares. I think it turned out really nice! The back is just the print. Originally I had a strip of pieces from the front framed with white strips on either side to go on the back, but after I had them sewn together and everything laid out I didn't like it so much. I like the simplicity of it just the way it is.

And here is the big wonky pinwheel quilt on the design wall:

I think it is totally freaking awesome, and I hope to finish it before next week.  Now of course I can't be working on only one quilt at a time, so tonight it's time to choose new fabric and a new design to work on. I think I'm going green or blue this time. Not sure yet though.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Work in progress

Happy Friday! 

I chose I pattern for the purple and black and gray fabrics finally - wonky pinwheels! Not just regular wonky pinwheels for me... HUGE, like HUGE HUGE pinwheels. This is gonna be interesting... I hope it works out like I think it will. The one good thing about huge is, if I don't like it I can always cut the fabric and make them smaller or into something new. This is what I'm telling myself at least. 

So I don't know about any of you, but cutting fabric is the worst part of making quilts as far as I'm concerned. I wish I could go directly from idea to sewing, or even better, idea to binding. Putting the binding on is my new fav. I dunno why since it takes for-ev-er. Maybe it's the watching tv while doing it part since I don't get to do that too much. Or the sitting on the couch part, which I also don't get to do that much. Probably a little bit of both. 

I just looked at the table and my fabric is still not cutting itself. Boo. Another item to add to the list of things I want to teach Meatball to do...

Anyhoo, I don't want to leave this post un-pic'd, so here you go:

This was the second quilt I made this year. It was for my friend Amy who said, "I love pink...wink wink". So, she got a pink quilt. She thought I was kidding when I said I bought pink fabric. Silly girl.

I think this was the beginning of Meatball's fabric addiction. He'll never be the same... cute little Meatie!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Fabric in the mail is the best!

Guess what arrived today...

The fabric for the back of the Odyssea quilt! Yay! Fun times for this Saturday. :0)

In other news, I am trying to figure out what my next quilt will be. I picked out the fabrics:

Now to find a pattern for them. I've spent an hour or so combing through Flickr for inspiration. It still hasn't come. I want to do something simple but awesome. No pressure at all. At first I was thinking another new wave quilt (because they are awesome!) but my husband suggested I try something new. Sometimes he's right. (Shh, Don't tell him I said that)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Pics of the Scrappy Quilt

 Yay, Pics!

So Here it is pre-washing:

Pretty freakin' cool looking if you ask me. :0)

And here is what I meant by not so great quilting:

Followed by some better quilting:

It's not perfect (by FAR), but I'm getting there.

Scrappy Quilt Done!

Sorry for the short post without any pics. I'll post another tonight with some.

Last night I finished sewing the binding on the scrappy quilt. I spent several hours Sunday afternoon stippling it. By the end, my wrists H.U.R.T.! Does this happen to all of you? I'm assuming so - is there something you can suggest to make it less stressful on my wrists? I guess I should try to do the quilting in shifts, but when I get going I don't wanna stop! :)

I decided to use purple thread to quilt for a few reasons:

1. I had it on hand and knew I have enough
2. It's a scrappy quilt with so many colors in it already, so why not?
3. The backing is Kona plumberry - a bright fuschia color - and the purple quilting looks awesome on it
4. I wanted to see my stippling so I could measure how good (or not so good) I am getting at it

I have to say I think I'm getting the hang of it. I have a lot more curves than points (I'll show you want I mean tonight) and my stitch length is getting more consistent. The thing I have to work on now is having a plan as to how the quilting should look in the end, i.e. less totally random wanderings around the quilt and more planned wanderings that look random but aren't. Does that make any sense?

For the binding I used craps of binding that I had on hand. I figured it was appropriate since it IS a scrappy quilt, right? I love how it has come together and I like it more now than I did when just the top was complete. The stippling and the binding have truly made the quilt. It looks so flat and even.

Yay for me I had less mistakes learning experiences with this go around.

1. I had the backing fold under only once on an edge! Go me. It wasn't so bad, either, since I caught it early.
2. I had to clean the sewing machine towards the end again since it started that lovely skipping stitches/ bad tension thing. I was prepared for it this time so it was less of a pain to do.

That's it! I don't have any folds on the backing at all. I didn't burn anything, or prick my finger while putting on the binding. Awesome, awesome, and awesome!

I want to take pics before I wash it and after so I'll post them all for you to see. It looks so good right now I almost don't want to wash it.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Back chosen, on to stippling...

So after sleeping on it, and a nice suggestion from Stine, I think I'll ditch the mostly white idea for the back of the Odyssea quilt and go for one of the prints. I'm thinking this one:

Then a strip of white and other scraps somewhere. I'll figure that out once I have all of the fabric.

On today's plate is finally finishing the scrappy quilt. It has been a WIP for too long now.

I have a few more blocks to add to the bottom. I chose kona plumberry for the back so it is definitely one crazy quilt! And of course it gets my second attempt at stippling. Woohoo!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

What in the world am I gonna do for the back?

Yay, it's Saturday! :) Have I mentioned how much I like Saturdays?

Today I am making this quilt, inspired by a pattern by Oh Fransson! (sorry for the bad pic, but it's a work in progress so better pics will follow once it is done.)

I liked it at first, then didn't like it, now I'm liking it again. It took some trial and error to get the blocks in the right places. I ended up lining up the colors on the diagonal which seems to work out best. While the fabrics are from the same family (Odyssea by MoMo for Moda and some Little Folks by Anna Maria Horner for Westminster Fibers) some of them look weird next to each other. I think I should have used half as many fabrics instead of trying to have 21 different fabrics (plus white of course). Oh well, it is all sewn together now. My husband likes it and has been making comments about it all day so it looks like this one is his! Win!

So here is my question - what the hell do I do for the back? I'm thinking of mostly white with some of the left overs of the Odyssea fabric on there in some fashion. Maybe bars of different lengths stretching out from one side, or maybe all of the way across making a wide band? I don't want to make any more of those squares. I have this feeling that I should do that, so of course I don't wanna.  What's the fun in that?

Friday, April 30, 2010

My first *real* quilt

I finally did it, I stippled a quilt! I was going to use the scrappy quilt as my first try, but it is just sitting there waiting for me, so it was too much pressure. Instead, I made a new quilt on Sunday using Rainy Days & Mondays fabrics and some Kona white. It seemed appropriate since it was raining and almost Monday.

It was an easy quilt to piece and get ready for the dreaded quilting. I spent Monday and Tuesday after work quilting it. I'm not really sure why I was so scared to do it! Don't get me wrong, this white and pure looking quilt is definitely "R Rated" now after all of the cursing I did. I had so many things go wrong during the entire making of the quilt:

1. I slightly burned 2 squares while I was ironing it. What. the. hell. I think I need to clean my iron.
2. While I was quilting it, the backing folded under on one corner and I didn't realized for a little while. Crap. What a pain in the butt that was to fix. Then it happened again!! This has never happened to me before, and now it happened twice.
3. I was *almost* finished quilting, about to run out of thread, and my sewing machine decided to go ape-shit and skip stitches, have inconsistent tension, and generally piss me off. This is where most of the cursing took place. I stopped, cleaned the darn thing, then everything was fine again.
4. After ripping out all of those god-aweful stitches I didn't pin re-pin the quilt before finishing and I have a nice little fold (tiny-ish, but still!) on the back. Sigh. I left it since I was already running out of thread.
5.While binding it, I pricked my finger and got a couple of drops of blood on the back. Did I mention the back is completely white? BAHHH!!! Thank goodness it came out in the wash. I'm not sure how, but it did.

So anyhoo, after all of those mistakes learning experiences it is done! I washed it yesterday, and I love it. So does Meatball, can't you tell?

I definitely have some practice to do to get this stippling thing right, but for a first try I am really happy with it. I can't give it away because of the burn marks (you can hardly see them, but I know they are there) and that wonderful fold on the back, and like I said it is so full of curse words it would be wrong to give it to someone so I will love it as my own.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Quilt in action

Quilt from Erica
Originally uploaded by GirlKacey
Isn't it lovely? My good friend Kacey took a better picture of the New Wave quilt I sent her for her birthday. I love her photos. I say photos, because I take pictures, but she definitely takes photos.

I'm worked on two new quilt tops this weekend. I'll spend the week and next weekend finishing them off. I want to make another new wave quilt, too, but I need to pull myself away from that pattern so I don't get stuck there for too long. It's kinda hard, though, when it's such a great pattern!

Also, I need to get working on the two Raven's quilts I need to make. I ordered the official Baltimore Raven's fabric last week and now I need to find the perfect purple to go with it. I haven't decided what pattern I will use for the quilts, nor if they will be the same pattern or two separate ones. Any ideas?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Saturdays are my favorite

This new blog thing is going to take some getting used to. Like, I need to proof-read the hell out of my posts so I don't re-read them the next day and realize I forgot whole words or could have worded things better. Bleh! I would like to make the disclaimer to the world (and to myself) that I am not perfect and I will forget words and mistype or mis-spell and I'm not going to go back and fix them later because this is supposed to be a fun thing and not work. So there. Whew! Glad that is done.

So anyway, I love Saturdays. It's the one day of the week that Sean and I have off and we get to be lazy bums or motivated I-don't-know-whats if we want to. Yay! Lately they have been filled with quilt creations by mwah and him giving me creative help when I need another opinion. Oh and he loves to play video games so he does a lot of that, too. It works out well since we are both doing what we love to do when we waste time but we are in the same room so it's like we are doing both activities together but not. Good times!

I ordered a walking foot and a quilting foot for my sewing machine last weekend. I am finally going to try out this stippling thing I've been putting off for way too long. I'm completely afraid, but I really want to stipple a quilt (or a hundred, HA!) so I need to just DO IT. The quilting foot is staring at me so I guess I should get off of the computer and get to it. eeek! Wish me luck!

Friday, April 23, 2010

My Second New Wave Quilt

New Wave Quilt
Originally uploaded by emcquiston
I'm so excited to share this one! I made it for my awesome friend Kacey's birthday this week. Isn't it purdy? I wish I had a better picture of it. Well, I kinda have one as the banner for my blog, but when I cropped it to fit I cropped the original so, yeah. I asked her to send me a pic of it in her apt and she's better at taking pictures than I am so hopefully I will be saved. It was hard sending this one off. Like, I contemplated making something else to send off at last minute but I really did make this one just for her so I sent it.

So I think this is my new fav pattern from Oh Fransson! I added two add'l rows so the waves go up instead of across. I did the same to the first one I made, and I like the final size. I think next time I'll add those add'l rows and also two more colors and make it even bigger. I mean, seriously, how could you NOT love even more new wave quiltness?

This weekend I'm thinking more squares. I love quilt tops with squares. My husband makes of me (in a good, encouraging way) because I am afraid of narrow points. All in good time I guess, right?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The blue and gold one

The blue and gold one
Originally uploaded by emcquiston
Here is the quilt that started it all again. It now lives on our bed, and I L.O.V.E. it. There is one problem, though. It is huge. And I mean huge huge. Bigger than a king size quilt and it's on our queen size bed huge. I haven't made any this big since then, and I don't plan on doing it anytime soon. I'm sticking to lap quilts and baby quilts for a while.

That cute orange cat is Maceo. He's one of my 3 quilt inspectors, the other two being Meatball and Roxy. You'll meet them soon enough.

Ta Da!

So here I am. I have been contemplating this whole blog thing for a month or so, and I finally decided to take the plunge. I've started making quilts again after putting that hobby on the shelf for 5 years. So far I've made 14 since January. I think it's a crafty addiction that will be around for awhile, so I might as well document the journey. So here we go.