Thursday, July 31, 2008

Time Flies!

Oh my gosh! It's been over a month and I haven't posted, which means that a month has passed that I have not finished a quilting project. (This is how UFOs develop).

So to not look so lame, I'm going to post a photo of my Ugly New York Beauty challenge block which I created as a challenge project for my Yahoo quilting group last month. The object was to pick an ugly fabric and to make it look okay through the use of layout and color.

Obvously I didn't win this challenge, but I did learn how to paper piece, and I got to work with curves, spikes, and most importantly, I got in some practice with freemotion.

And since we're rehashing old projects, what better time to pull out the 'almost' quilts and the UFO....
This is fused applique with machine satin stitching. I made this from a pattern to hang outside my daughter's classroom door. It was fun, but tedious. Not exactly a quilt, but in the same family....kind of like chicken and cornish hen.

This is a wall hanging (also made from a kit) I whipped up for my sister who has a large Americana display. I thought this might go well with it. The cool thing about this was how all the little squares were pieced together. You stitched all the different red strips together lengthwise into a tube and then you cut them into strips along the width. Next you ripped out a seam in different places in the tube so the fabric patterns of the strips were now random and no two fabrics aligned next to each other. Really neat. Stitched in the ditch (do we detect a pattern here?)

Let's close this post with the granddaddy of all HGTV Strolling the Block quilt. The photo shows a pieced top. We are actually sandwiched, all the ditch stitching is done and we have started some freemotion. I'm not exactly sure what the problem is. Either:

a. I'm sick of it (it's been a work in progress for at least 5 years), or

b. I've got so much time and labor invested in it I'm afraid I'll screw up the quilting, or

c. I have nowhere to use or display this so what is the point?

This is fused applique, every single piece is meticulously hand blanket-stitched. There are major emellishments throughout (embroidery, buttons, charms, fishnet, etc.). More of a wall hanging (albeit it almost twin bed sized) rather than a snuggle under--all that 'charmage' does not bode well for comfort.

One day I'll look back on this and laugh about how long it took to complete (sigh)

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Finished My First Quilt

I fell in love with the Moda Posh fabric line a few weeks ago so I ordered a jelly roll and a pack of charm squares. ('Jelly Roll' cute is that!). Anyway, admidst all the various projects in progress I've got going on, I have managed to complete this quilt, which will be a cozy throw in the family room.

I really wanted to freemotion quilt it, but when I started it (on two separate occasions) I had trouble with skipping stitches. Now I am strictly a beginner quilter, but I just felt that something wasn't right, and it might have been the thread. Yet I really wanted ot use that thread because it was so perfect--the variegated thread that had all my colors in it, so I just whipped out the old Walking Foot and tediously stitched in the ditch along each strip and block.

I found the perfect pink already made bias quilt binding, so I saved some time there. Machine stitched down one side and practiced my applique stitch blindstitching the binding on the back side.

This was a happy quilt to work on because of the colors and the patterns, and I thoroughly enjoyed working on it

I'm so excited and can't wait to start on another. Hopefully I'll be able to freemotion my next project without having the skipped stitches. Maybe I should make a few sandwiches and practice, it could very well be 'operator error'.

Friday, June 27, 2008

We're Not in Kansas Anymore, Toto

Please allow me to introduce myself. I am....
  • A New Quiltmaker with Lofty Aspirations (I aspire to Baltimore Album greatness)
  • Santa Maker Extraordinaire (Jack Sparrow Santa--need I say more)
  • Lover of All Things Gingerbread
  • Crazy Christmas Lady (15 trees, 1 in each room. Any more than that and people start to wonder if you also have 300 cats in your house)
  • A Quixotic ('rash, lofty ideas') Crafter

and, most noteworthy

  • The Queen of Procrastination (life is short, why not wait until the last minute to do things--especially those things you don't really want to do)

which explains why it has taken me so long to jump on the 'blogwagon'.

But I have been having such a good time reading other people's blogs and enjoying the photos of their creative endeavors that I want to share my artistic pursuits as well. So here I am.

I feel like I've jumped into the deep end of the pool without a pool noodle. I can only hope that over the next few weeks, I'll find myself swimming with the sharks.