Wednesday, March 26, 2014

W.i.P Wednesday: Back to the Beach

It's hard to believe we've made it to Block 12 of our Toes in the Sand BOM at Quilter's Way.  I've pretty much abandoned using the fabrics provided for the month and just pull from the scraps from previous months to create the blocks I want.

No construction surprises...  at this point I can whip these up pretty quickly:-)  My only tip is to press the triangles around the center hexagon in the opposite direction of how you press the outer ring.  In my case I pressed the chevron triangles towards the center hexagon and the aqua triangles away from the floral hexagons.  That way your seam allowances will nest and give you pretty points.

We're going to take a month off and meet up again in May to show off our completed tops.  I can't wait to see this one finished!!!  It'll be perfectly beachy for summer... if it ever stops snowing around here;-)

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
Checking in at this week's W.i.P. Wednesday:-)

Monday, March 24, 2014

Quilting With A Modern Slant

A long, long time ago my dear friend Rachel had the idea to write a book about the modern quilting community and because she's totally awesome invited me along for the ride.

As part of this adventure I got to go to Quilt Market and meet lots of "famous" quilters, do a photo shoot at Gather Here, and have way too much fun hanging out with people who are as insane about fabric as I am.  This weekend I had the privilege of joining Rachel and the phenomenal Pippa Patchwork for a talk at JP Knit & Stitch.  It was such a treat to meet so many lovely quilters and hear their quilting stories at this adorable shop.  A huge thank you to Genevieve and the rest of the gang for inviting us to join them!!!

If you haven't checked it out yet, Quilting With a Modern Slant profiles an amazing array of modern quilters.  What I love most about this book is that it is less about a specific technique or quilt pattern instead choosing to focus on what inspires different artists and the quilts they create.  It is loaded with delightful quilty eye candy and stories about the makers.  Interspersed are great quilting tips and useful tutorials (including a few by yours truly:-).  Even Martha thinks it's a good thing!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

W.i.P. Wednesday: Unpacked

Despite yet another snow storm, Thursday morning I packed up my car and headed for Kennebunk, Maine for the Boston MQG's 4th annual retreat.

As usual I spent more time socializing than sewing but I did manage to pick away at a few projects...  I got the center section of this Pure Plus quilted but decided it would be easier to use my guide bars to quilt the negative space once I got home.

I also re-made the month 2 blocks for the Toes in the Sand BOM so I'll be all set to put together the top once I finish month 12 at Quilter's Way next week.

And I finally cut up my Central Park layer cake.

I'm making Garden Fence blocks based on the awesome tutorial by Hyacinth Quilt Designs.  It doesn't quite work for a layer cake because you don't have enough for the center 4 1/2" squares but I'm thinking I'll use coordinating solids for the centers mixed in with bits of yardage I also have.

As always we capped off the trip with a stop at Marden's to pick up a "little" fabric:-)  I'm still riding the contact creativity high I got from being surrounded by so many amazing quilters.  I'm unpacked and ready to get back at it!

Keeping up with W.i.P. Wednesday

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

W.i.P. Wednesday: Hemming and Hawing

I took the fabulous Skip the Tailor class last weekend at Gather Here.  Virginia is a gifted seamstress and does a wonderful job at explaining how to alter garments.  I was a bit worried about chopping up my new Lilly Pulitzer maxi skirt with it's fancy hem but at 5' 2" that was the only way I was ever going to get to wear it.  Virginia walked me through removing the facing, trimming the skirt to match the existing curve, and reattaching the facing plus hemming the lining.  Left to my own devices I definitely would not have done as professional looking a job of it.  She also helped me take in the straps off another dress so the top fits correctly.  I've got another skirt lined up to go back next month, it'll be such a treat to finally get to wear these fabulous clothes:-)

While I was at it I was inspired to also hem these pants that have been sitting in my mending pile for way too long.  It's so easy following this tutorial by Refashion, Repurpose, Redo...

I also got a start on Oh, Fransson!'s Sewing Circle Tote but it's not going to be ready in time for this year's BostonMQG retreat.  I'm packed up and ready to go so hopefully the weather will cooperate and I'll be sewing up a storm this weekend:-)

Joining the fun at W.i.P. Wednesday

Friday, March 7, 2014

Retreat Readiness Plan

It's hard to believe our annual Boston MQG retreat is less than a week away.  4 days of uninterrupted sewing time is bliss but to really take advantage of all that glorious sewing time I have to really plan out what I'm going to do... thus the RRP: Retreat Readiness Plan.

The plan falls in to two broad categories: things to do on retreat and handmade things to take on retreat.

From past experience I've found that retreat is a great time to tackle my towering to be quilted pile.  Having friends to talk to definitely makes it go faster and as long as my lines don't have to be perfectly straight I can still do it after a glass or two of wine:-)  I've got a whole stack of quilts basted and ready to go.

With that out of the way I made myself a new pair of lounge pants with the some Anna Maria Horner Coreopsis flannel I've been hoarding.

Then I decided I needed a little pouch to store my earbuds using the awesome Heart Shaped Pouch tutorial by Dog Under my Desk.

These things are addictive so I made another one to share with a friend...

and used the original Circle Zip tutorial and some raw-edge applique to make one for Audrey.

I'm still hoping to whip up Oh, Fransson!'s Sewing Circle Tote to carry my supplies (and I know anyone who has made one is laughing at me right now!).  When I first got the idea the pattern was no longer available.  Luckily for me I whined to the right people because my personal fabric enabler let me know that it is now back in stock AND at a discount no less:-)  Obviously it's meant to be:-)