Sunday, December 19, 2010

On Vacation...

Even though it seems like I've just started blogging I'm ready to take a break.  I'll be spending the next 3 weeks in Florida Keys with my family.  I'm just hoping the weather will cooperate, I'm counting on spending lots of time reading in a lounge chair. 

Since I won't be doing any quilting I thought I'd share something I made earlier this year with Key Largo in mind.  I made this using 2 Neptune jellyrolls and Crazy Mom Quilts tutorial.  I quilted it on the longarm with a seashell pantograph.

I was going to do a pieced back with a zig zag across the middle but decided to use the leftovers to make a baby quilt.  I hate to waste a single piece of Neptune: )  I tried using Quilter's Dream Orient in this quilt.  It's a blend of bamboo, silk, and cotton and has become my new favorite batting.  It doesn't get as crinkly as Quilter's Dream cotton but it has wonderful drape.  I highly recommend giving it a try!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

More Holiday Quilting

I know I always say this but I absolutely fell in love with Riley Blake's Be Merry holiday fabric when I saw it last year.  It's so me, a pink & green Christmas!  As usual, I bought a ton and stuffed it in a bin.  Then this summer I participated in a Christmas in July workshop and decided to pull this out and use it.  My initial plan was to make 2 throw size quilts for my kids but as I kept adding rows I realized they would be extremely long skinny quilts.  Inspiration struck and I split one in half added the polka dot strips to the entact quilt and then attached the halves to either side.  It turned out big enough for a queen size bed.  Since I was "only" doing straight line quilting in the ditch on each stripe I figured I'd do it at home on my Bernina rather than using the longarm.  I don't think I'll be trying that again, especially in August!  The words were raw edge appliqued in the center after the quilt was quilted.  I also made a couple of matching pillowcases to finish off the look.  Now we just have to decide which bed it will warm: )

Monday, December 6, 2010

Holiday Decorating

I was so excited to get my holiday decorations out.  I actually made this last year but didn't have it done in time to hang so this is it's debut.  The pattern is Lucy Goosey in 3D from MBS done with basic grey/figgy pudding.  I was especially pleased with my quilting.  I spent lots of time drawing holly and then practicing before I finally just went for it and free motion quilted the borders and sashing.  I used a metallic gold thread that gives it some sparkle.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

One down

I've finished the first Nicey Jane quilt.  After trying lots of different things I decided it worked best without borders just bound with Amy Butler solid blue broadcloth .  I quilted this on the longarm using a butterfly pantograph (angel wings).  It doesn't show up very well in the photo but it really pulled it together and made it sweet.  It ended up being crib sized so if I can pry it away from my daughter it will be a gift for a friend's new baby. 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Well my goal for Thanksgiving was to make 8 napkins and a table topper to match my Rouenneries quilt.  It seemed like a reasonable goal but I only managed to get 4 napkins made.  I guess there's always next year: )  For these I used Essex Linen fat quarters with wide french-fold binding around the edges.  They're awfuly fiddly to make and each one took about an hour which seems like a lot of work for a napkin.  I think I'll prep the rest and sew them when I'm stuck on other projects.  No telling when I'll get the table topper quilted.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


I generally have a hard-fast rule against what I refer to as domestic sewing.  Despite the fact that I rarely go 24 hours without sewing something I don't do practical things like replacing buttons or hemming pants.  At the risk of sounding pretentious, I'm an artist, I have to follow my vision.  So it's OK for me to create quilts for the beach house I don't have, not so much the house I live in.  In general, the less practical the product the more compelling the project.  Recently I had a change of heart.  Since we moved in to this house 5 years ago my husband has been begging me to hang a curtain in the bathroom.  Nothing fancy, just something to hide the ugly blinds.  Let's just say I was less than motivated.  Sure it was ugly but I don't use that bathroom.  And I tried a couple of times but I could never quite find the "right" fabric to go with the fishies on the shower curtain.  But sometimes things just come together and suddenly I was inspired... it started when I first saw the Robert Kauffman was coming out with Dr. Seuss fabric.  We LOVE Dr. Seuss, it's my kids' favorite and I can recite The Lorax from memory when necessary.  But I was still dreaming of the quilts I could make... until I saw Pottery Barn had come out with the shower curtain.  Suddenly I had a plan.  Of course like all my plans there were stumbling blocks.  First I had to wait, like forever, for the fabric to actually be released.  Then I thought I was going to use this but after ordering 2 yards of it and draping it on my window frame I decided the scale was off and I didn't like it for a valance after all.  Fortunately I had also ordered fat quarter packs of both Celebrate Seuss and The Cat in the Hat so I could sample to my heart's content.  Once I finally made the decision and tracked down the appropriate fabrics the construction was a breeze.  Here's the final result... the new valance and shower curtain.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Every quilt needs a pillow

I really love this fabric collection so once I finished this quilt I decided it needed a matching pillow.  I used Heather's tutorial over at House of a la Mode.  It really was easy!  The worst part was burned fingers from all the folding and pressing: )  There's still more of this floating around my studio and I found some of the matching chenille so I think there's at least one more Martinique quilt to come.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Making Progress

Well I'd meant to show work in progress on Wednesdays but this week my camera went missing and it's hard to show your work with no pictures.  Thankfully the camera finally turned up so I can get back to picture taking.  So, I've got all my Whirlygiggles made and just need to sew the rows together.  I threw in a couple extra blocks made with Heather Bailey's Bijoux.  I'm trying to decide if I want to add any borders to this or leave it as is.  I'd like to add a pink inner border to make it float a bit more but I'm out of pink so that would require more shopping: )

I've also pieced together all the strips I cut for my second Nicey Jane quilt but now I'm stuck.  This is busier than I'd imagined, I wish I'd dropped in a few solids.  Perhaps a solid border would make it calmer.  I also was imagining it as a picnic blanket but it's not big enough for that so I'd either have to add more or leave it as it is and go for a baby quilt.  I've lost my vision for this one but hopefully it'll come back to me.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

I'm done

The fun thing about starting a blog is I have lots of things to show.  Things I've been working on for a very long time are new to you.  So here is my latest finish... you probably recognize it since I got the idea from Jamie Muller over at the Moda Bakeshop.  This quilt is going in my beach house, when I get one.  I always love 3 Sisters fabrics and Martinique was no exception.  I saw it as being more beachy and the ruffles reminded me of waves so I turned it horizontally and made this with a bunch of charm packs.  In what can best be described as a moment of temporary insanity I decided to hand quilt this.  I wanted baptist fans to go with my wave image and I was pretty sure my machine quilting wasn't up to the task.  I also don't have a ruffle foot so that part was a bit of a nightmare.  In the end it was all worth it; )

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Inspired or Insane?

This summer I picked up a fat pack of Heather Bailey's Nicey Jane with the idea I'd use it with the tutorial over at Quilting on Turtle Hill and make a Whirlygiggle quilt.  So this week I finally broke it out of it's shrinkwrap and started looking at the fabrics.  Maybe it's the polka dots (which I love) but I saw it coming together as more of a stripey thing with circles.  I also thought it would look nice done like Teaginny Deisgn's Pure Baby Boy.  So after playing with it for a while I decided I cut pieces for all three quilts at once.  I hate cutting so I might as well take advantage of the fact that it's already pressed and ready to go.  Here's where I am.

Now with a 10" cut from each fat quarter I can get my whirlygiggle rectanges, different length strips for my stripey thing and some bonus 2 1/2" squares .  We'll see if I can actually get all three quilts made before I run out of steam.  The real challenge will be quilting them all!  My TBQ pile runneth over...

Monday, October 25, 2010

How Ghastly

Look what I've been up to...  I am all about pink and green so I instantly fell in love with Alexander Henry's Ghastly Manor and bought up every piece of it I could find. 

The theme print is huge so at first I was stumped as to how I was going to cut it up and put it back together without losing the cuteness.  I fussy-cut the motifs and went with a wonky log cabin.  I'm more of a precision piecer so this was a stretch for me.  I used Jason Yenter's Wintergraphix for the outer strips. I like the way it spins around and makes you a little dizzy.  The back and binding are Basic Grey Onyx Grunge which really picks up the pink.  Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Building my street cred

So sure, I told you I'm an obsessive quilter but I really haven't done anything to prove it.  Exhibit French General:
alidiza: Rouenneries Rail Fence Quilt
Rouenneries Rail Fence made with a bunch of honey buns.  These aren't usually my quilting colors but this line goes with my house so I bought a ton of it.  See how perfectly it matches my couch: )  There's a table topper made with some leftovers waiting to be quilted and a plan for some matching napkins.  The goal is to get them done in time for Thanksgiving... you'll hold me to that, right?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

To blog or not to blog, that is the question

I realize I'm a little late to the blogging party.  A few years ago when everyone started doing it I checked out a few Mommy blogs, followed my friends for a while, read some random stuff... but I didn't get it, at all.  Why were people so fascinated by the minutia of other people's lives?  Then I stumbled on some quilting blogs and I was hooked like heroin.  So for the last year I've been stalking you.  Not in a bad way, just checking out your latest creations, reading about your new fabric loves, and using your tutorials.  No comments, no give away entries, just quietly watching and quilting up a storm.  And thanks to you I've grown as an artist until I realized it's time for me to take the next step and start blogging myself.  I hope I can do for you what so many others have done for me: make you laugh, show you how to do a thing or two, and ignite your creativity.  Enjoy!