Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Binding is not my favorite part of quilting.

Part of my problem is that my machine does not handle the bulk well.  I have to keep convincing the feed dogs to not give up.  And I have learned to appreciate the needle up\down button which I don't have!

Since a good portion of my quilting to do list right now involves binding quilts, I haven't been too motivated to get into the sewing room.  I usually end up putting off doing the binding until the very last second, but I refuse to be sewing binding the day before we leave for the holidays this year.

I wish there was a finishing fairy to come along and bind my quilts for me.   But since there isn't, or at least we haven't met yet, last night I made myself sit in the sewing room and get working on binding.

I managed to get the binding mostly sewed down to the front.  I felt so ridiculous trying to manipulate this monster through my itty-bitty Janome that I told my husband he needed to take a picture.  Though for all the trouble it was giving me, I'm not sure this picture does it justice!

All that's left is joining the ends and then lots and lots of hand stitching to finish it off.  Hopefully I'll keep this momentum going.  It only took me 4 months to get this far.

Linking up to W.i.P Wednesday.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Hand Quilting

My entry for the Blogger's Quilt Festival is one that I finished just recently, so I hope you will bear with me and enjoy it again.  I call it "Secret Garden."

Secret Garden was a mystery quilt made from stash fabric, which becomes irreplaceable as time goes on and fabric goes out of print, so I was especially nervous about cutting into this beautiful butterfly fabric.  I've had one hit and one miss when making mystery quilts so I'm not sure I will make another one, but I really like how this one came together in the end!

I fussy cut some of the center squares and the border is 5 inches wide to showcase the butterfly fabric as much as possible.  I used every last scrap that I could!  The border was even re-worked a time or two because I started with a design that used more than I had.  Whoops!  I hate it when that happens.

For my whole time blogging I have been quilting on the sly, because this quilt was going to a very good friend of mine.  It was awesome to give it to her for her birthday last month.  I love when I can bring a happy surprise to the people I like.  That's what makes all the hard work worth it!

Circles are my go to quilting shape and there are 183 circles of various sizes in this bad boy!

This quilt took about 145 hours and is approximately 62x80.  It is bound in light green.

Thanks for stopping by and make sure to enjoy some of the other pieces on display.  Submissions are open until Halloween and voting begins on November first.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

A Friday Finish!

My niece had to design a quilt pattern for a class.  When I heard about this I knew I had to see what the pattern looked like.  I thought it would be a cool gift if I could make something using her pattern.

When the pattern came I was worried.  Very worried.  When someone who is not a quilter draws a design... well, I took one look and was ready to run screaming for the hills!  It was complicated looking.  And all the shapes I had never dealt with before were intimidating!

But I was determined.

So I started designing.  And pulling some fabric.  And doing a lot of procrastinating.  Interspersed with a whole bunch of winging it.

The trees were not so difficult once I had the right rulers, but I completely and utterly made things up as I went on the mountains.  (It worked once, so I just crossed my fingers and wished until I finished the other three.  Seems reasonable, right?)

This wall-hanging has had more than its share of issues along the way.   And where there are seams coming together, there are a LOT of seams coming together.

But I think it came out pretty darn well at the end of it all!

If you look closely there are two different skies.  One on each diagonal

As you can see, I have already started auditioning some backs.

Linking up with Finish it up Friday.

Friday, October 4, 2013

On the Winds of North Carolina

That mini quilt challenge I had in my sights?  I managed to pull it all together!  In two days I designed, pieced, hand quilted, and constructed a 12x12'' pillow.  Phew!  But I'm very excited to show it off!  I may have done a happy dance after it was all pieced.  It came out better than I hoped.
The Glider

The challenge was to make a mini quilt based on a holiday memory.  I thought that was really cool!  Then I hemmed and hawed and got stuck.  I have lots of awesome holiday memories, but it was hard to pull something from them that could be made into a quilt in 2 days.  But after much struggling to choose, Wednesday morning my pattern just fell right out of my head.  Quilt plan and all!

Me in the middle!
This summer we went to the Outer Banks in North Carolina.  While we were there, we took the opportunity to give hang gliding a try.  There are some awesome winds in the Outer Banks (sometimes a little too awesome! Apparently 25mph is too strong to hang-glide on...) and sand dunes that at least made me feel as though it would be a soft landing.  I loved it.  If I lived near a gliding hill, I think I'd go once a month!

Family and friends tried too...

So without further ado...  I give you hang gliding, quilted style!
(I'm sorry the pictures are a bit dark, it's nasty out today.)

If you look closely, there's a needle in the arm of the chair!

You may notice that the sky fabric that I acquired the other day came in very handy.  I'm glad I bought extra!

I added a couple of clouds, a good wind keeping the glider aloft, and wind patterns in the sand.  The back is made from white polka dots, because who doesn't like a good polka dot?

It was a good trip, a great memory, and it became a pretty neat pillow!  I hope you enjoyed coming along on my trip down memory lane!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Gathering Momentum

After some helpful comments last week and a trip to my local fabric store, I came up with a plan to move forward.  I now have two different skies and I will be making two blocks with each color for this 4 block wall-hanging.
The new fabric is in the back

I was able to find this blue at my local quilt shop, which matches the original pretty darn well, if I do say so myself.  I'm not sure I could have gotten any luckier!  Also the color is called "sky", which is perfect.  It's now washed, ironed, and waiting its turn.

In the meantime, I ripped out the two large trees that were now in the wrong color and assembled the smaller trees for my first fabric sets.

I didn't quite make it to sewing it all together yet, but soon!  I've been too busy hiking mountains of late.  Eight mountains and an 8.5 mile run... all in the past three weeks.  But now there needs to be some recovery time, my body is demanding it, and so my sewing room won't be so lonely for a while.

And in true quilter fashion, I have found a mini quilt challenge going on over at Celtic Thistle Stitches that ends on Friday but has caught my attention anyway.  I have a block designed but I don't know if I'll be able to pull it all together in two days.  Wish me luck!

Linking up to W.i.P Wednesday.