Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Sharing Some April Finishes

I worked in the office today, and after that I did some merchandising, and when I was finally on the way home at 7:30, I stopped to pick up a prescription only to find out that they had sent it back into stock because I hadn't picked it up sooner, so I've got to sit and wait for that. Obviously, when I got home, I really needed to do something fun to take the edge off the day, so I made this pincushion. A bunch of circles to cut out, a little hand stitching and it's assembled with a glue gun. Two hours with the tv on. Not bad. I like it. (And now that I look at it, this is what I should have made for the 'Bloomin'' challenge!)

This is the challenge quilt that went in on Friday. String piecing on muslin, piping, piano key, a little applique, thread painting, used a template and a pouncer for the first time. Not exactly my cup of tea, but it's done. I'm sure we'll find a home for it.

Next we have my favorite so far of the Aurifil Designers 2012 Blocks. April Showers (clearly). I'm really enjoying the embroidery experience (I think it's solely due to the Aurifil 28 wt thread I'm using. It would most definitely not be so much fun if I was separating strands of floss.

The long in-process Drunkard's Path with the decorative stitched fabric also went off to the show. It was renamed 'Broken Records'. There's a lot of different ways to view this...negative space, positive space, pinwheels, curves. I should have named it 'Introspective Stoner Quilt'.

Last week I caught a sale at JoAnn online and bought a holiday cartridge for the Slice Fabrique (it has an alphabet on it), and a circle die for the Accuquilt. Notice anything different about this die? I was excited when I took it out of the package. They've started using two colors of foam on the die so you no longer have to Sharpie around the shapes so you know where to lay your fabric. Way to go Accuquilt!

And when I was at Mimi's class last weekend, I picked up some batiks to use on my first mystery quilt. I'm going to do a Merry Mayhem mystery (it's already started) that's being played out on the MidAppalachian Quilters site. I figured as long as I was going to attend the conference and take two classes, I should also do the mystery. Maybe tomorrow night I'll start cutting. While I'm not entirely confident, I'm pretty sure I've represented a light, a medium and 2 darks with the stack of fabric above.

Along with this I've got a wholecloth project that I need to sandwich and get quilted and then have at with some metallic fabric paint--another first for me. I'll be sure to share all the gory details of that project with you.

Of course, it might be nice if I got those last few blocks prepped for one of the Baltimore Album quilts. Next class is in 2 weeks, I think. And I've got to figure out how to get pencil out of fabric. Any ideas?

Friday, April 20, 2012

What I've Learned This Week

That Valdani thread is super linty.

That Grey Goose Pear on the rocks makes you think you're really creative.

That the audible alarm on the BSR irritates the crap out of me.

That if you pretend it will be judged on total stitches it's a lot more fun.


 That it's not whether you win or lose, it's what you learned from playing the game.

And finally, that one bottle of Grey Goose Pear is just enough for a 40" square project.
I finished the 'Orange Blossom' challenge quilt tonight--except for the binding/sleeve and label ... I'm going to have to pull an all-nighter tomorrow, as turn in is noon Saturday and I've got 2 to bind, and 5 to label and sleeve.Yikes! (If you don't have any plans tomorrow night.....)

And now that it's basically done, how do I feel about it? Let's just say that 'Slow to Bloom's' redeeming quality is it's back, where you can see the 800 or so yards of thread used to quilt it.

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Week in Review

Which is precisely why I didn't take the hubs with me to the 'lost our lease' sale at the quilt shop in Frederick this week. Yes, I got lots (26 yards or so--most of it Kaffe Fassett) of fabric, and some Aurifil threads (I didn't get there on the first day, so by Day 2 they only had 3 colors left), a 1/4" foot with guide for my Bernina, and a dozen bobbins--but it was still so very, very sad. This is my Bernina dealer who sells all things Bernina for significantly less than anyone else around, and who is an excellent tech. I don't know what I'm gonna do come November when my machine is expecting her annual 'spa' visit. Guess we need to start looking for new places to live. :)

So, in the spirit of 'Keep Calm and Carry On', I pulled out one of my stash boxes...

And added the new Kaffe to it. I think it's about time I made a quilt (or three). Don't you?

And in the spirit of procrastination, I busied myself with anything but putting borders, hanging sleeves, and labels on the quilts that need to be submitted for the quilt show next Saturday. Just call me 'Goddess of the Last Minute'.

I was able to sign up for two classes at the upcoming MidAppalachian Quilters Seminar in July:

The first class on Friday is to make Gyleen Fitzgerald's scrap pineapple quilt. And I spent all day Sunday organizing scraps and cutting 4 pounds of strips to be used in this quilt.

And in the process, I came up with a couple of jelly rolls. Talk about hazardous working conditions. I was breathing fabric all day, and the fibers were flying with all the cutting. But when I hope in the car to head to that class on JULY 13th, all I need to remember is to grab the basket full of strips and yardage that is prepped and sitting in the studio closet.
(Go ahead, laugh).

And the other class I took was for Gyleeen's Glorified Nine Patch.

Now, I've got to do a little cutting before class, but that's pretty much all sorted out. I'm going to use the South African indigo I've been hoarding now for a couple of years. And because it's manufactured in South Africa (I ordered direct from DeGama Textile Mill), it's only 35" wide, so a fat quarter is just under 18". No worries, I've already emailed Gyleen to see if it would work to just cut more strips, and she's confirmed (and probably thnks I'm crazy asking questions for a class that's not scheduled for 3 months.

So, other than that, I've kitted up and started working on the Aurifil Designer 2012 block, I'm reallly enjoying the redwork-like hand embroidery on this. I've also got a seasonal wool applique banner to work on, and I'm trying to clean up the studio. (Note that I have yet to mention that I've got a class Sunday with Mimi Dietrich and have yet to figure out what I'm going to show her.)

Puppy's doing great. Today I caught him with a pin in his mouth, and it's not a pin I've used recently, so clearly he found it somewhere under the sewing table, embedded in the carpet. When unsupervised, Tucker T (for Trouble), likes to take all of the toys out of his toy basket and make himself at home. Good thing we don't have any big dogs, as at 4 lbs 1 oz (he's growing like a weed!), he'd easily be mistaken for one of those toys--afterall, he does squeak when squeezed..

It's bad enough an owl the size of a bulldog has taken up residence in the back yard, most likely waiting for the little black bunny to venture out unleashed and unsupervised but tonight there was an unexpected interruption to business when something (not sure if it was the owl, a fox, or a coyote) started making some very strange noises at the side of the house while we were out back having our last potty break.  Tucker flew back into the house. (Heck,whatever it was, it scared me back into the house too).

Please stop by over the weekend and leave comments scolding me to get back to work on the Guild Show quilts (Mimi is going to have to listen to some lame excuse from me again this month).

Happy Friday To All!