Arrows Quilt

I’m so excited.  Today is my day to share on Christa Watson’s blog tour for her new book Piece and Quilt with Precuts.

I chose to make the arrows quilt a bit smaller than the one on the book.  I left two rows off the side and a row off the bottom so my quilt ended up being 66″ x 72″.  I used 7 fat quarters from Alison Glass 2015 & 2016 Sun Print collections and about 4 yards of various Grunge whites for the background.  Even after making the arrows, I still had enough of the fat quarters to make a scrappy binding.

yes I laid on the grass to take this picture

The quilt was super quick to cut and piece.  I think I have no more than 5 hours total in making the quilt top.  Quilting it was another story.  I chose to quilt it the same way Christa quilted hers – with free motion arrows and cursive L’s.  I had not tried either before so I decided this was a great time to learn something new.  The instructions provided in the book were very clear and made learning these two new forms very simple.

Look! The points match! A little bit of extra work, but so worth it in the long run

Her book mentions that both free motion designs are fairly intense so she suggests doing short sessions at a time.  I would agree.  The maximum time I could sit and quilt the arrows was 45-60 minutes.  And even though the L’s seemed easier to quilt to me, I could only keep the motion going for about 20 min before they started looking funky.  In total it took me about 10-12 hours to quilt the entire thing on my domestic machine.

I backed the quilt with this fabulous Allison Glass print from her Ex Libris collection that perfectly matches the front.  So three different Alison Glass collections in one quilt and they all go together like they were meant to be. It also shows some of the quilting.

GIVEAWAY CLOSED.  MaryD is the winner ** GIVEAWAY #1 **  I’m giving away an electronic copy of Christa’s new book here on my blog courtesy of Martingale Publishing.  Just leave a comment telling me your favorite quilt from Christa’s new book, and if you have a private account be sure to leave your email as well.  Giveaway open through August 31.

Or you can buy a copy of Chrita’s book from her shop.  Trust me  You’ll love it.

GIVEAWAY CLOSED ** GIVEAWAY #2 **  On my Instagram account, I’ll be giving away a fat-quarter bundle of the Allison Glass prints that I used for the arrows.  Check out my Instagram feed for info on how to win.  I am @monkeyneedle.

And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that you need to check out the other great bloggers that have participated in this fun blog hop.  A full list is below.

FRIDAY AUGUST 18 – SQUIGGLES

Kathy Bruckman Blog: Kathy’s Kwilts and More IG: @kathyskwiltsandmore
Kate Colleran Blog: Seams Like a Dream IG: @seamslikeadreamquilts
Sharon Parcel Blog: Yellow Cat Quilt Designs IG: @punkydoodle53

Click here to see Christa’s version of Squiggles.

SATURDAY AUGUST 19 – GRIDWORK

Sandy Maxfield Blog: Sandy Star Designs IG: @sandystardesigns
Joanne Harris Blog: Quilts by Joanne IG: @turtlequilterjo
Teresa Mairal-Barreu Blog Sewn Up: IG: @teresadownunder

Click here to see Christa’s version of Gridwork

MONDAY AUGUST 21 – FREQUENCY

Nancy Scott Blog: Masterpiece Quilting IG: @masterpiecequilting
Martingale’s Blog: Stitch This! IG: @martingaletpp
Lorinda Davis Blog: Laurel Poppy & Pine IG: @laurelpoppyandpine

Click here to see Christa’s version of Frequency

TUESDAY AUGUST 22 – S.W.A.K.

Sherry Shish Blog: Powered by Quilting IG: @poweredbyquilting
Michelle Bartholomew Blog: Michelle Bartholomew IG: @michellebartholomew
Allison Dutton Blog: Allison Sews IG: @allisonsews

Click here to see Christa’s version of S.W.A.K.

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 23 – STARSTRUCK

Lissa LaGreca Blog: Lovingly Lissa IG: @lovinglylissa
Sherri Noel Blog: Rebecca Mae Designs  IG: @rebeccamaedesigns
Sandra Healy Blog: Sandra Healy Designs IG: @sandrahealydesigns

Click here to see Christa’s version of Starstruck

THURSDAY AUGUST 24 – DOT’N’DASH

Laura Piland Blog: Slice of Pi Quilts IG: @sliceofpiquilts
Cheryl Brickey Blog: Meadow Mist Designs IG: @meadowmistdesigns
Jen Frost Blog: Faith and Fabric IG: @faithandfabric

Click here to see Christa’s version of Dot’n’Dash

FRIDAY AUGUST 25 – TWINKLING DIAMONDS

Jessee Maloney Blog: Art School Dropout IG: @jessee_artschooldropout
Jessica Caldwell Blog: Desert Bloom Quilting IG: @desertbloomquilting
Anjeanette Klinder Blog: Anjeanette Klinder IG: @anjeanetteklinder

Click here to see Christa’s version of Twinkling Diamonds

SATURDAY AUGUST 26 – WINDOWS

Terri Vanden Bosch Blog: Meanderings Along Lizard Creek IG: @lizardcreekquilter
Suzy Webster Blog: Webster Quilt IG: @websterquilt
Katie Joy Church Blog: Wild Prairie Studio IG: @katie_joyquilts

Click here to see Christa’s version of Windows

MONDAY AUGUST 28 – KITES

Pam Cobb Blog: The Stitch TV Show IG: @thestitchtvshow
Jen Rosin Blog: A Dream and a Stitch: IG: @adreamandastitch
Rashida Khanbhai Blog:  No. 3 Quilt Studio IG: @no3quiltstudio

Click here to see Christa’s version of Kites

TUESDAY AUGUST 29 – ARROWS

Lynn Kline Blog: Monkey Needle IG: @monkeyneedle
Kathy Bruckman Blog: Kathy’s Kwilts and More IG: @kathyskwiltsandmore

WEDNESDAY AUG 30 – SPOOLS

Jen Shaffer Blog: Patterns by Jen IG: @patternsbyjen
Sandra Starley Blog: Textile Time Travels IG: @textiletimetravels

Thanks for visiting!

Red Fox

It seems that I’ve disappeared from the blogging world again.  We are hoping to move to the mountains in a matter of weeks, so we have been busy making more repairs around the house, decluttering, and packing.  More about that another time.

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I wanted to show you a quilt I designed for my youngest grandson.  He was born last August.  I found this fabric at my LQS and fell in love with it and knew I wanted to use it for his quilt.

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The fox and tree are raw-edge appliqued.  And other than the background and the fox fabric I just had to have on the back, everything else is scraps.  I quilted bamboo onto the background, and filled in the fox, tree, and leaves with free motion quilting.DSC_0167 DSC_0161

Last but certainly not least, it’s somewhat hard to see, but in the tree trunk I embroidered my grandson’s initials.  I really love that part!

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I decided to enter  this quilt into the Blogger’s Quilt Festival at Amy’s Creative Side.  Head on over there and vote for all the wonderful quilts.  There are lots of fun quilty prizes up for grab, so we are all super excited about it.

Linking up with Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts, Link a Finish Friday at Richard and Tanya, and Can I Get a Whoop Whoop at Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

Wonky Star

A couple of months ago, March I think it was,  I took a class at Spoonflower with Nicole at Mama Love Quilts    Nicole makes beautiful quilts, so not only was it an opportunity to possibly learn something new from a great quilt maker, but I was intrigued by the sample quilt.  Here is her quilt.
8568723788_18519fb6fbAlso, if you’ve not heard of Spoonflower, check out my post here.

None of the seams for the stars lined up so I was very interested in how this pattern was written.  And the class was free, so I really had nothing to lose.  Imagine my surprise when I found out that it used improv piecing and wasn’t a pattern in the typical sense.  I have never really done any improv piecing, but it didn’t take me long to get the hang of it.  And it was quite fun and freeing.  There are no rules, and no pattern — in fact, the wonkier, the better.

I decided to use scraps rather than cut up some of my stash, so I pulled out all my bright scraps from past projects.  I also decided to make my quilt large enough to be a baby quilt.  What’s really exciting about this quilt is that I have fabric from at least 8 other projects represented here.    I still need to bind it, but that should be done later tonight.

DSC_0278I used scraps for the back.

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Also, one of my goals this year was to practice my free motion quilting and get somewhat better at it.  So I used 4 different free motion quilting techniques on this quilt.  By the time I got done with the quilt, I was certainly better at the FMQ patterns I had decided to do.

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DSC_0285DSC_0286Now to start the binding.  Have a blessed weekend!

Linking up with Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

 

 

 

 

Scrappy Trip Along

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Even with working 65 hours a week, I have been able to finish a small project.  One of my goals this year was to do a Scrappy Trip Along quilt.  This quilt pattern has really taken off — there is even a Flickr group.  Apparently this design has been around for 14 years.  Wow, I feel like I’m so behind having just recently discovered it.  But it’s still very popular, and pictures of new quilts made with this pattern are being uploaded daily.

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I used a 1/2 jelly roll of Moda Birdie that I had left over from a baby quilt I made a few years ago.  I had just enough of the jelly roll left to make this quilt 40″ x 40″, which is also a good size for a baby quilt.  I did have some problems with the strips of fabric stretching, so not all my seams line up correctly.  I hate that — but sometimes I have to tell that perfectionism thing to take a back seat.

I also used this opportunity to practice some free motion quilting.  I chose a design called Paisley Flower by Leah  Day and then adapted it for a larger quilt versus a 6″-8″ square.  My flowers ended up being 3″-7″ in diameter, with the average being about 5″, and it still took quite a while to quilt.  I still need to practice sewing over the same line more than once, but I am very pleased with how it turned out.

DSC_0701And look at the colorful pile of fabric scraps I had left over.  I think I might put this outside and lets the birds use them to decorate their nests.  Or maybe I’ll make one myself similar to this.  DSC_0683

 

This would be a great quilt to use with scraps.  I might just make another one another day. They all look great when done

 

Losing My Marbles

Well, this past week has been pretty bad for work. I’m working lots of hours; but it is tax season, so I guess it comes with the territory.  In fact, in the last 3 weeks, I’ve had just one day off.  If they were normal 8-hour working days, it might not be so bad.  But these have been 10-14 hour working days.  And I think I’m about to lose it – my marbles, that is!  So therefore, I think tomorrow will have to be another day off for ‘my sanity’.

Due to my crazy work schedule lately, I really haven’t had much time to sew.  I did finish up a baby blanket I was crocheting for a co-worker.  She is due in just 4-days so it really had to be done.  I forgot to take a picture of it though, so I guess I can’t show it to you.

However, I will share with you a project I designed and completed before things got crazy at work.  I am working on a pattern for a quilt and I wanted to make a few test squares.  They turned out really nice so I decided to turn them into a pillow.  I had it designed and made in part of a weekend, so I was very thrilled with how quick it all went together.  The flowers inside each circle are machine embroidered.

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I also decided to practice some free motion quilting.  This is an area I really need to work on, but I’m pretty pleased with how this turned out.

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2013 Goals — But NOT a New Year’s Resolution

Let me be very upfront about this. I don’t like New Year’s Resolutions. I honestly do not think I have ever seen anyone, and I mean ANYONE, keep or live up to their New Year’s resolution. I see it only as a way to let yourself down.

However, I do believe in setting goals. In fact, to quote a well-known financial guru, “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Plans and goals are essential. Otherwise, you live day in and day out with no direction; and without direction, in 10-years, you’re likely to be exactly where you are now.

Very seldom does want you want come easy. It usually takes hard work and dedication. But what are you going to work towards if you don’t know where it is you want to be. Setting goals will give you that direction.  Your goals need to be SMART – specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-sensitive.  And goal setting can happen at any time, not just on the first day of each year.

So here are some of my short-term goals.

Quilting/Sewing related:

Other goals:

  • Spend more time with family and friends
  • Make a photo book for 2012
  • Plant, expand, keep up with my garden this year
  • Lose weight – isn’t this on everyone’s list?  I need to lose at least 40 pounds this year.  60 would be better, but we’ll keep it real at 40.  In order to meet that goal, I will need to:
    • Stay away from sugar and simple carbs
    • Exercise 5 hours a week.
  • Stay on a budget every month.
  • Work with monkey #1 on Pre-K workbooks
  • Do Financial Peace Jr. with my 12-year old

Blueberry Pie, or Is It?

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Ok, so it’s not real blueberry pie.  But it does make you want one.

I decided to make a couple of these as I needed a couple of small gifts.  With a nice fluted pie plate and a really good pie recipe, I thought this would make a great wedding, hostess, or housewarming gift.  Or heck, even a Christmas gift for that person who likes to cook and has everything already.

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I found a free pattern at my LQS for this Pie Block Hotpad.  The red plate is layered with heat resistant batting and is free motion quilted.  The pie is ‘stuffed’ with a little bit of polyfil. And of course, you can pick your own flavor of pie.

This is not as ‘quick’ of a project as I was thinking it would be and that could have been for several reasons.  1. Mechanical issues — I do not have a ruffler for my Bernina, so I was trying to ruffle the fabric on the old Singer I have.  Let’s just say that after four attempts, it aggravated me to no end so I pulled all of it out and ruffled it by hand.  2.  The directions were not as clear in some areas as they could have been.  3.  I can be a perfectionist sometimes.  I played around with the spacing of the lattice for quite a while before I got it the way I wanted it.

The good news is now that I have worked out the kinks, the next one should go along much faster.  So that will probably this evening’s project.