Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Scrap-A-Palooza! Quilt #12 Part Four Finish

With all the excitement of 2014 coming to a close, I almost forgot to share December's Scrap-A-Palooza finished quilt!  I admit it has been finished for a while now but a flu bug has zapped my energy and I am lucky if I can get a couple items a day accomplished on my ever growing to-do list!
  Hopefully I am over the worst of it!





We started this quilt with Part One, where we narrowed our colorways and pulled our scraps.

I chose a purple floral scrap from a previous quilt back to use as my color inspiration.










In Part Two, I shared the process for determining how to get the best yield from my fabric for the vertical bars.  I also shared how I determined how wide my coins needed to be to get the size quilt I was hoping for.






Once the scraps for the coins were cut to size, in Part Three, we simply sewed everything together and assembled up the quilt top.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 Well, here is the finished quilt in all of its scrappy goodness.

 
 

The colors in this quilt are some I would have not considered putting together in a project but I do find them pleasing to the eye.  I always learn so much using my scraps!


 
And I was able to make a backing from my fabric stash.  I had to use two different solids but I like how it turned out.
 
 
And now for a few statistics:
Lap Quilt
Size: 55 x 65"
Fabric: All fabric for the quilt top came from the scrap bin.  Many of the larger pieces were backing trimmings from previous quilts.



 And some older photos to share using this same concept:
 
 
Modern Lap Quilt in Beautiful Unique Colors, perfect for brightening a gloomy evening, Handmade in mint green, blue, purple, pink, turquoise
 
 For this quilt, I used a Jane Sassaman border print for the color inspiration and vertical bars.


Modern Quilt in Orange and Gray

And this one was also made from the back trimmings of a previous quilt.  The orange and gray pieces were what was left over when sub-cutting for a pattern.  They were already cut to width so I just sewed them together.



As I stated in an earlier post, Scrap-A-Palooza will continue into 2015.  Woo Hoo!  I am not going to commit to a quilt a month but I will continue sewing up my scraps and sharing the process with you!  Feel free to sew along any time!






And don't forget that starting January 4th, I will be hosting Oh Scrap!, a weekly linky party where you can link up your scrappy projects.  So don't be bashful, share your ideas for sewing those scraps!




If you are interested in more ways to follow me, you can find me on Craftsy, Facebook, Pinterest, Bloglovin', Feedly, Instagram, Google +, or get my blog sent right to your email inbox by entering your email address on the right sidebar! 
 
 
Scraptastic Tuesday
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Saturday, December 27, 2014

Snowflakes on Christmas

For an entire year, there has been a finished quilt top sitting right next to my sewing machine and for an entire year I have worked around it.  In fact some of you may remember photos of the top I shared in June of 2013!  All it needed was to have the final papers pulled out, the sides trimmed and the edges stay-stitched.  But because it was a Christmas quilt, I felt I could always put it off for another day.  Exactly why I missed finishing it for last Christmas!

Well, a few days before this Christmas I finally got around to doing this 30 minute job and immediately got to quilting it up!.




Christmas Eve was spent cuddled under the quilt finishing up the last of the hand stitching on the binding.  (For the binding I simply used the excess backing - which is a great frosty feeling turquoise snowflake print.)



The quilt was all ready to relax with on Christmas day!




 Thankfully few of the fabrics in the quilt are Christmas themed so I can enjoy this quilt for the rest of the winter.  The colors will certainly brighten the gray rainy days we get here in Oregon.


 This quilt was english paper pieced using 2" hexagons so the top was all hand pieced.  I really enjoyed making all the separate snowflakes. Fitting them together to make the quilt top was like a big puzzle!


Finish Along 2014

This quilt was the only item on my Q4 Finish Along list that I even spent any time on.  One of these years I am going to be on the ball and plan to finish my holiday projects earlier in the year.  In fact, maybe I should consider getting a few items on my Q1 list for the new year!


(A huge thanks to Katy at The Littlest Thistle for keeping me focused on finishing so many projects in 2014!)






 I hope all of you had a wonderful holiday filled with quilts and hugs to keep you warm!




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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Little Letters - Quilt #2 Finish

With all of my clients' Christmas quilts finished and delivered, I am finally finding some time to spend in my sewing room.  In an effort to finish up as many projects as I can before the end of the year, I am trying to focus on a single quilt and finish it to completion.




My regular readers know I have been working on three separate quilts of Little Letters (found at Temecula Quilts).  The first one I completed a few weeks ago.  I am happy to say the second one is now finished and ready for a home.




This one was also made from the scrap bin.  I restricted the scrap colors to soft blues and greens and the background is various white or white on white prints.




I initially had plans to just use a white for the outside border but I found myself with still a number of small scraps in these colors so I decided to just go ahead and frame up the quilt with a scrappy piano key border.   This choice also helped to make my decision on what color to use in the cornerstones.




You gotta admit this one turned out pretty cute!
 



My final set of Little Letters to get sewn up into a quilt I knew would be my most challenging.  There was really no rhyme or reason as to the fabrics I chose.  I simply wanted to use scraps and needed a light and a dark for each blocks.  I am really going to have to put my thinking cap on to come up with a fun plan.  It will be my Christmas holiday project!

Craftsy

I am looking forward to a nice quiet holiday with lots of much needed rest.  I hope all of you are able to spend your holidays doing what you love! 

If you do find yourself with a bit of free time, consider downlaoding a Craftsy class.  Classes are all on sale right now at a great price!




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Friday, December 19, 2014

Oh Scrap! : Deja Vu

Alright all you scrap quilters and those who have scraps and just don't know what to do with them.  There is going to be a new linky party starting in the new year right here on this blog where you can share what you are making from your scrap bins or just find inspiration on how to use the scraps you have.  
I am pretty excited!

Before I get into the details, I did want to share a small finish with you.  Remember the Scrap-A-Palooza quilt I shared in October?  The lovely large lap I decided to keep all for myself?




I still had a few more cut scraps so I decided to just keep sewing and make a smaller version of the same quilt.  This one finished out at about 40 x 48" and I didn't float the strips quite as much as I did in the larger version.




The background fabric I used was a bit darker but I did have enough of the same backing fabric to finish up this mini-me version! 




I love the wonderfully warm feeling of the colors in these quilts!  I have been enjoying the larger version every evening as I relax in front of the TV.




So what have you been doing with your scraps?  There is a now a place for you to share your ideas and projects!  Starting January 4th, every Sunday afternoon, I will be writing up a post called Oh Scrap!, and you will be able to link up those projects and share with others.  Also, if you are overran with scraps and just need some inspiration, this will be a great place to find some ideas on how to sew them up into beautiful items.  Hope you join in the fun!

Quilting is more fun than Housework
<a href="http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/" target="_blank"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-XTyeCeIcFJ8/VJSHulTzvkI/AAAAAAAAGCc/O_OPzksuV2s/s1600/Oh%2BScrap%2BButton.jpg" alt="Quilting is more fun than Housework" width="125" height="125" /></a>

Here are a few details:
  • This linky party is for any scrappy project - It can be in-process or a finished piece.
  • You can link up your blog post (not your homepage) or Instagram photo from the past week that features your use of scraps.
  • If you are linking to a blog post, I ask that you link back to my blog somewhere in your post. So if you are writing about scraps, just get into the habit of including a link as there will be a linky party available every week!
  • If you are using Instagram, please use the hashtag #ohscrap.
  • This is a party so remember to socialize and comment on the posts of others.
  • Following my blog is not necessary but it sure would be great if you do!

So if you love scrappy projects, feel free to grab my button for your sidebar and get ready to share all your wonderful projects from scraps.  And if you have a great idea for using scraps and would like to be featured, feel free to contact me!

For giggles, I have included a place this week for you to link up a post about a scrappy project.  It doesn't have to be from this week this time around - just something you would like to share. (Plus it gives me the opportunity to work out any bugs before we go live in January!)  Thanks!





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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Scrap-A-Palooza! Quilt #12 Part Three

Just what have I been doing while I should be sewing up a few more Christmas gifts this month?  I have been having a jolly good time sewing up this month's Scrap-A-Palooza quilt.  
Can I just say I LOVE the colors in this quilt!




Last week, I shared my process on determining the sizes for both the vertical sashing and the "coins" sizes.  As I cut the scraps to size, I started building the quilt on my design wall.










This week, I have been sewing all the "coins" together and cutting the strips to length.  I trimmed the vertical sashing and the pieced strips to a uniform 65" long.


You can see in this photo the lovely colors in this quilt all pulled from the colors in the floral strips.  I took some classes from quilt artist Jean Wells about color and the most important thing I took away from her classes is when using something for color inspiration for a quilt, whether it be a photograph or a fabric swatch, use the same proportion of each color found in your inspiration piece for your quilt.  I really tried to practice that in this quilt and keep the oranges, greens and blacks as small accents and make this quilt predominately purple.





Once you have everything cut to length, it is time to sew the strips together.  I do pin the strips together before I sew them.  You can see in this quilt I tried to get away without doing it on one seam and I ended up with some distortion near the black on the bottom. I really do know better but I always think I have to try!





...um, no...I didn't go back and fix it.






Here is a shot of the top with all of the strips sewn together.  
This quilt top sure has an eclectic mix of fabrics!




I searched in my stash for some fabric for the backing.  I had one piece that would work - the colors are perfect!  It just isn't quite big enough.  Hmm...this is going to take a bit of thinking!

As I ponder the backing and get this one quilted before the end of the month, I hope you check back tomorrow.  I will have information for you on Oh Scrap!, a new linky party I will be starting up in the new year. 

So dig in those scrap bins and make something fun so you can share it.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

2015 Blog Plans

Every December, I start thinking about what changes I want to make in both my personal and business life.  This December is no different.  And as this blog has become a big part of my life, I have been reflecting on what changes I want to make in 2015.

Below are some of the items I want to focus on.



1. Many of you have spoken loud and clear that you enjoy the Scrap-A-Palooza series so I will be continuing to share scrap quilt ideas in 2015. I may not keep up my rate of one quilt a month but I will continue to share the steps to each quilt I make. And if you missed an idea and need inspiration, past quilts will continue to be available in the Scrap-A-Palooza quilt gallery.

2.  Something new for the year will be a Scrappy link party I will be hosting. So many of my followers create some beautiful projects from their scrap bins and I would love to provide a place where they can be shared. Specific details will be released soon so stay tuned.  I really hope you join in on the fun!






3.  The year 2014 was really dedicated to sewing up my older stash. While I still have stacks of fabrics to sew through, in 2015 I am looking forward to creating projects using newly released fabrics. I am planning on a year filled with a nice mix of old and new with a little bit for everyone.  My most recent purchase is this stack of lovely Maureen Cracknell prints.  Yum!






4.  I really hope to carve out more time next year to write up some tutorials for quilt blocks and other projects to share with all of you.  I currently don't always take the time to photograph my quilts in process but I plan on changing that in the future!











5.  And speaking of photos, another goal for 2015 is to improve my blog photos. I have downloaded the Shoot It! photography class from Craftsy and have saved the wonderful photography how-to posts by Ruth at Charly & Ben's Crafty Corner so I can research and improve my skills. I also want to spend some time freshening up my blog.  Boy does it need it!




6.  Because I am not getting younger, it is time to start working on my bucket list of quilts. Many of the quilts on my list are very involved so they will all take some time to finish. But I hope to start with one and share my progress all the way through completion. Just a few on my list is a pine burr, wedding ring, pickle dish and a Charlie Harper influenced wall hanging.  I will be starting this process in January with a Pineapple Quilt.






7. Designing patterns is what I really love to do and I never seem to make time for it.  So in 2015 I am planning on showing determined focus in getting more of my patterns published, both in magazines and as independent patterns.












8.  I am so grateful that I make a living doing what I love. And to give thanks, I will continue to donate quilts to various organizations. In 2014, a total of 14 quilts were given and I hope to repeat or exceed that this next year.


 9.  I am also grateful for my readers and all those who support my blog by following along. I hope to host more giveaways in 2015. I will revisit taking on sponsors in 2015 to help make this happen.


 

10.  And because so many of you use other social media platforms, I hope to be better disciplined about posting to sites such as Facebook, PinterestInstagram, Google + etc, so you have lots of opportunity to see what I am up to.  I was doing really well there for a bit but have been slacking lately!


So those are my plans!  Speak up if there is something I missed or things you wished I would share more of.  This blog is for sharing so let me know what types of things you want to see.


15 Quilty Resolutions for 2015


Yvonne over at Quilting Jetgirl is responsible for getting me rolling on writing down these goals.  You can see what others have planned for the new year here.





Linking up with Anything Goes Monday.

FYI - Just informing you this post contains affiliate links.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Paying it Forward - SMS Winner

Getting fabric in the post is such a treat!  So I think I have almost as much fun sending off prizes as I do getting them!




The winner of the April Showers fat quarter blog I contributed to the Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day event is getting sent off to Catskill Quilter.   Congratulations Elizabeth!!

Thanks to all who dropped by and left comments.  It was great to read what everyone was sewing up for gifts this year.  I even got some fresh ideas for some last minute projects this year.



And speaking of gifts, I got one in the post myself last week.  Did you see the big giveaway the folks at Robert Kaufman fabrics had for celebrating Kona solids turning 30?  While I didn't win the main prize, they did decide to draw a second name and share some extra patterns they had along with a skinny roll and a tote.  Golly, yes, my name was drawn!

So as I was packaging up my fat quarters to send off to Elizabeth, I decided it was only right to pay it forward and draw a second name for another 5 fat quarters of April Showers.




This time I drew Casandra's name (who just started a blog last week at The (not so) Dramatic Life.) Congratulations to you also Cassandra!


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Friday, December 12, 2014

Little Letters - Quilt #1 Finish

I have finally found a bit of time to get into my sewing room and focus on some of the projects layered on my design walls.  And rather than work on a number of them at the same time, I have been making a concerted effort to only work on one quilt at a time.


So, I have a finish to share!
(Funny how that happens...)




 Here is the first of the three Little Letters quilt I am working on.  (The patterns for the letters can be found at Temecula Quilts).  This one was made entirely from the scrap bin - each letter is black with a light gray background.  The solids and cross weaves are all the last bits of various colors in my stash - many I am not even sure who the manufacturer is.  Most of these blocks used up the last bit of fabric I had so it was nice to clean all those solids out.

Because I had limited colors available, it was challenging to get the color effect I was going after.  I am glad I resisted cutting from pieces of yardage - then I just create more scraps!  And the quilt turned out just fine using what I had.


 If you recall in a previous post, I was not happy that I did not outline each letter with a bit of gray before I added the background.



So to give each letter an outline, I added some fun detail in the quilting.  With a light gray thread, I just surrounded each letter with some loopy quilting.





 Not too bad for a silly little scrap quilt!

And this quilt was my finish goal for A Lovely Year of Finishes with Sew Bittersweet Designs.  So I can strike it off my list!

I am now working on quilt #2 and hope to share it soon.  Each one of these little letter quilts is laid out quite uniquely!  Hope you come back to check it out.

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