Wednesday, April 30, 2014

April Layouts

I do not know what happened to April.  I swear it was just yesterday that it started and now it is almost done.  It has been a busy month, but really not too bad.  I did get a few layouts done this month for Trixie Scraps Designs.

The first one I did was for the Photo Challenge on her blog. I was leading the challenge so I got to pick the theme and it was Spring.  There is nothing greater than all the wonderful spring flowers.  I  used the kit Love in  the Garden Value Bundle because of the cheerful colors.  I had a great bluebonnet photo I wanted to use and the blues in this kit were perfect for it.

Next I did a layout with my favorite furry baby...yep the one and only Tucker Joe.  I used the kit Best Year Ever, which I find myself going back to over and over again.  I think it is because I love the colors and elements in the kit.  And isn't that face just too cute!!

Next I did the font challenge at Ginger Scraps using Triumphant Value Bundle.  This is another kit that I use over and over because the colors work with so many photos.  The photos are of Sharla and Cooper.  I still miss that little grey ball of fur.  

And my last layout was for the Recipe Challenge at Ginger Scraps and I used the Nature Walk Value Bundle.  I really like this kit because of the colors.  I used this kit because I thought the colors really made the photo pop.  And yes because I love the little stick element...I know it is silly, but there are elements that I just love to use and that is one of them.

That is my Trixie Scraps layouts for April.  If you don't have any of these kits I recommend them highly.  I have used the all multiple times.  You can find all of her products in her store and each kit name is linked.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Friday Finish/ALYOF - Turning Twenty Kissing Booth

To love or not to love that is the question.  The quilt I'm showing you today has a long story behind it and it has come/gone/come again in my liked category.  Last year Sharla and I went to the Dallas Quilt show on Friday, which was just a mad house.  We were overwhelmed by the crowds, the quilts and the stuff for sale. But Sharla found the kissing booth turning twenty kit and purchased it.  I will admit I was a little jealous, because I really loved the colors, but didn't see the need for us to have matching quilts. We decide to go back on Sunday afternoon, hoping to have less people (and it was so much better) and look at some things we couldn't get to on Friday. We passed the kissing booth quilt again, and I stopped to look at it.  Sharla could see I liked it, so she told me to buy it.  What did it matter if we had matching quilts.  During the next month, I found backing fabric for both quilts and then they just sat and sat and sat.  For fabrics we both loved, they didn't get much attention. Now to be fair Sharla went into the hospital, and was pretty sick and we had the floors redone, and general life happened.

Still with me...told you it would be long.  In March Sharla decided she wanted to work on hers, so we pulled it out and cut it out.  While cutting hers I decided I wanted to do mine as well.  Playing with those fabrics just made me happy.  She finished hers and I quilted it.  And then I finished my top.  I was so happy with it, I loved the colors.  So it was time to put it on the long arm and quilt it.  That is when this quilt took a hit.

Yes some how I got a major wrinkle on the back that I saw as I was advancing the quilt.  I was heart broken.  There was no way to fix it on the machine...well none that I could figure out.  So I took it off the long arm and began the process of picking out the quilting.  Now I was beginning to not love this quilt nearly as much...ok maybe I was beginning to even dislike it. Picking out the quilting was a very tedious process, and in doing so the quilt got a lot of lint all over it. I finished it last Sunday and it went onto the Avante.

As I quilted it, I was constantly having to pick link and thread off of it.  I even ran a lint roller over it, but it didn't help.  I just wanted it done.  I got it quilted and bound and when I was done I didn't love it anymore. And that made me sad.  As I always do I washed it when it was done.  And this morning when I pulled it out of the dryer, I loved it again.  All the lint was gone (well 95%) of it, and it was crinkly and smelled so good. The poor lint trap was packed.

I used Signature's Cotton Candy thread, which is a lovely mix of pink, purple and orange, that blended well with the fabrics.  I did my typical all over meander.  I did find a nick in the binding, but I'm just mending it.  I am just so glad it is done and that I love it again.

Will this be my all time favorite quilt ever, probably not, but I know I will use it for years to come.  And it will be a reminder to me to stick with it, because in the end I will be happy that I completed it.

This quilt was my major goal for A Lovely Year Of Finishes - April.  And yeah I got it done!!!  I have also completed a quilt per week so far and should finish one next Monday as well.  What I haven't completed is the test quilt, but I have all the HST done and hope to work on it this weekend.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Friday Finish: My High Street Turning Twenty

I have to say I am so happy this one is done.  I love the colors and can't wait to use it.  Although a friend tried to steal it yesterday...bad Tina.  The fabric is High Street By Lily Ashbury For Moda Fabrics. The colors are just so bright and cheery.  You will be seeing another quilt similar soon.  Sharla did a turning twenty with the same line, but we didn't use all of the same fabrics.

I used Raspberries variegated thread by Signature which goes from a light pink to a deep dark pink and really looks great on the quilt.  I did cross over once, and of course it was on an orange square so it stands me.  But I didn't pick it out because I'm ok with it not being perfect.

The back and binding match the outer border.  This print is probably my most favorite in the line.  I love the deep pink with the bright yellows and oranges.  

These photos don't do the colors justice, but it has been a lot of cloudy days this week.  Maybe if it will be pretty this weekend and I can get better photos.  But for now I'm just glad I have another one finished.  My next thing is to get the test quilt I'm working on done.  I have everything ready, but had a bit of a rough week, so nothing got done.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Finish Along 2014 - Quarter 2

Ok I missed the sign up for the quarter one finish along, but have found making lists really do help me get things done.  So for the second quarter, which is April - June I need to get several things done.

First I want to quilt one quilt per week, which would be 13 quilts. The problem with that number is that I don't have 13 tops done...well I do but some are still packed away.  Plus I don't want to be so rigid that if something happens I feel like I failed.  So I'm going to say that I need to quilt 10 quilts in the second quarter. If I get more done, great. Below are eight that are done and laying on my Handiquilter frame.  I hope to get all of these done.

Second I have to finish the third test quilt. It is due May 1st, and all the HST are done, so it shouldn't be a problem.  I'm just hoping it turns out as cut as I am picturing it in my mind. I started assembling it, but when I sewed things together wrong I stopped again.  But it will be finished!!

Third, this is the hardest one for me.  I have to cut shirts for four memory quilts.  I have had the shirts for months, but haven't been able to cut into them.  I think it is just  being terrified I will mess them up and my friend will hate me. I know that she will love me no matter what, so I just have to force myself to do it.  The second part of this goal is to have at least one if not more of the tops completed by the end of the quarter. There it is writing, so now I really have to do it!!!!

And my last goal for the quarter is to get with piece at least one top from my stash of projects. Right now I am thinking it will be the PB&J fabric I bought at the Dallas Quilt Show this year. But I have several projects waiting that I want to do.  If I get more than one done, great, but I want to add at least one to the complete tops pile.

So that is my list.  I know it is a lot to do, but I have lots I need to accomplish.  If somewhere along the way, other projects jump ahead so be it.  But for now if I can get these things accomplished I will be a very happy camper.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Friday Finish: Cheaper by the Dozen Done!!!

I know it is rare for me to show the same quilt two weeks in a row, but last week the flimsy was done and Sharla really wanted it quilted so this week I quilted and bound it.  I will say it is a very pretty quilt.  It just screams spring time to me.

I used Signatures Iced Blue cotton thread for the quilting and it really looks good.  It blends with the back wonderfully and it does stand out on some of the dark blue blocks, but blends with the rest quite well.

I just quilted in an all over meander, and I don't believe I crossed over any lines this time....YEAH!!!  So I am making progress.  I did get very very close a couple of times, but that is all.  I struggled a little with the tension, but finally got that all fixed.  I do think I need to type up notes on what to do with each tension issue so I don't have to go back to the computer.  Maybe I can make it pretty and frame it for the sewing room. And lastly I want to point out that Sharla is getting better with her piecing....look at those matching seams.  

Friday, April 4, 2014

Friday Finish: Cheaper By The Dozen flimsy

Ok it has been a rough week for me and I don't have a finished quilt for the first time this year. I started on my kissing booth turning twenty and it had a big boo boo on the back, so I'm in the process of picking out the quilting so I can start again.  At the rate I'm going it is going to take me at least another week or two to get it ready to go back onto the frame.

But in the mean time, since Sharla doesn't blog I'm going to show ya'll her finish for the week.  And since I cut it out, I'm claiming at least part of it as my finish (hehehe).  The pattern is Cheaper by the Dozen and it is one of the kits we purchased at the Dallas Show. The fabric line is called Summer Breeze by Sentimental Studios and produced by Moda.  We normally don't do a lot of yellows, but this is two weeks in a row with yellow quilts...must be we want spring to be here.

The pattern is pretty simple, and it makes a nice sized quilt using 12 fat quarters plus a little more for the borders.  I know that Sharla is really happy with how it looks.  I think it will be the next one I quilt.  So hopefully you will see it finished next week.

And for those of ya'll that know where I live, yes we had rain yesterday and some hail, but no real damage at all.  The funniest thing was we lost power and Sharla was in her recliner which is an electric recliner.  It was fun watching her wiggle out of it.  But overall we missed the really bad stuff and the only one really scared was Hollywood.  I think it was his first big thunderstorm.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

A Lovely Year of Finishes - April Goals

I've been on a roll the last couple of months, but that has been added by other challenges that have me sewing every day.  I am definitely not planning on sewing every day in April.  I still plan on getting a lot done, but maybe not as much as before.

My one big goal for April is my kissing booth turning twenty quilt.  I finished the top last month...yeah and even started quilting it when I discovered a major wrinkle on the back.  I love this quilt and just can't let that pass.  So I've removed it from the long arm, and am removing the quilting, which will take me all month. And then I want to get it quilted.  I know seems like a lot of work, but it is worth it.  Here is the wrinkle...

It was just the start of a bad week.  But I'm shaking off the bad vibes and going to pick out the quilting until it is done.  Now I want to get more done than just this in April.  My other goals include trying to quilt one quilt a week on Monday/Tuesday.  I believe I will be doing, my high street turning twenty, Sharla's high street turning twenty, Sharla's cheaper by the dozen and my kissing booth listed previously.  I also want to get the test quilt I'm working on done, and by that I mean the top completed.  I may try to sneak in the quilting on it, but I'm not setting that as a goal. It is going to be a busy month, but that is ok, I prefer to be busy.  I'm linking up with A Lovely Year of Finishes 2014  with Melissa at Sew BitterSweet Designs and Shanna of Fibers of All Sorts.

A Lovely Year Of Finishes March Wrap Up - 30/30 Sewing Challenge Wrap Up

Since I set my goals for both of these challenges together, I thought I would do my wrap up post together too.  I am quite happy with my accomplishments for March.  I did get four quilts finished, so I averaged 1 per week, which was my main goal.  Here are the completed quilts

Week one I completed my first t-shirt quilt. It was a small quilt, but I'm using it on the back of my chair, and in the evenings when it gets a little chilly it is perfect for tossing over my feet.

Week two I did switch things just a little.  Sharla had completed her kissing booth turning twenty and really wanted it quilted.  I was planning on doing a turning twenty at the end of the month, so I just moved this one ahead just a little. She and I are just thrilled with how this one looks.  

Week three I did Sharla's disappearing nine patch quilt.  It was large, and bright and just made me smile when I worked on it.  I have to say these are Sharla's colors and it is almost neon.  I think my favorite part is the back.  It is busy so it hides any errors, but it is also just plain fun!!!!

Week four was my disappearing nine patch.  The colors are not something I would normally pick, but I really love the yellow/black/cream combination.  It just reminds me of spring.  I will be the first to admit I still need to improve on my quilting skills, but I'm so happy with how far I've gotten.

I also wanted to get my turning twenty kissing booth quilt cut out and pieced.  Which I did.  I was going to try and sneak it in as quilted as well, but on Sunday when I was working on it I found a major boo boo on the back.  So I've taken it off the frame and am removing what has been quilted, which will take me some time.  But since I love the colors of this quilt so much I'm not willing to just let it pass. Here is the finished top, followed by the boo boo that I found.

I also had the goal of getting the fabric for my next test quilt.  I've gotten the fabric, sewn a couple of test blocks (we won't go into how bad they were), and began cutting and sewing on the quilt.  I have lots of the half square triangles sewn, and hope to start cutting and trimming them today.

Overall I accomplished everything I wanted to do in March, so I'm very very happy with that fact. Could I have done more, sure, but there were some rough days.  I'm sure I will do other challenges in the future like the DaGMT or 30/30SC, but I have to say I'm looking forward to April where I don't feel pressured to sew everyday.  I'll be setting my goals for April later today, but for now I'm linking up with I am linking up with Shanna of Fibers of All Sorts and Melissa of Sew BitterSweet Designs for A Lovely Year of Finishes 2014 - March and Berry Barn Designs for the 30/30 Sewing Challenge Completes.