Monday, May 23, 2016

Shoot for the Stars

alidiza: Shoot for the Stars iPad cover
It's hard to believe but this is probably my last year making teachers' gifts.  Dex is graduating from elementary school and at the Jr. High and High School with multiple teachers it isn't done as much.   One of Dex's favorite units this year was on astronomy.  Talking about it reminded me of these adorable embroidered constellations by Miniature Rhino and I was off a running...

I did get off to a rocky start with this idea...  I initially planned to use Dritz transfer paper but none of the colors made visible marks on this Ebony Carolina Chambray.  Next I tried using a light box and chalk pencil but now I couldn't see the dots thru the dark fabric.  I thought about making a plastic template but wasn't wild about having to punch out all those stars...

A few people suggested I change course but this is the fun part so after brainstorming awhile I came up with the idea of printing the pattern on these Wash-Away fusible applique sheets.  Since the design was simple I just fused the reversed version of the pattern to my fabric and worked from the back.  I find these sheets a bit too thick for quilting but this was perfect and saved me the step of adding fusible after I finished the embroidery.

After my success embroidering my old school cursive pencil bags with Aurifil 12 wt. I knew it would be perfect for this project also.  I love the sheen it has and it's so much easier to work with than multiple strands of floss.  With a plan in place I grabbed a glass of wine and kicked back for a relaxing afternoon of stitching in the sun:-)

Once I finished my stitching I loosely followed the pattern for my Patchwork iPad cover but sized it down a bit to fit the latest form factor.  For the back and flap I upcycled an old wool dress that's a bit too short for my current style and for the lining I had to use some precious Lizzy House Constellations.  She's a really special teacher:-)

alidiza: Shoot for the Stars iPad cover
I used this as an opportunity to try the new Pellon Flex Foam Fusible in place of the fusible fleece.  It bonds like a dream and is amazingly easy to sew thru.  My only complaints are I can't stack multiple layers to cut and it's very difficult to pull thru a small hole if you are using a pattern that births your bag.  It definitely provides a bit more protection for your electronics so I think I'll keep using it and switch to using a bound edge.

alidiza: Shoot for the Stars iPad cover
It's a bittersweet ending but I'm sure I'll find new excuses to make stuff;-)  What's your go to handmade gift?

May Is For Makers |

Friday, May 20, 2016

Sunshine Roses

I finally got some sunshine for a quilt shoot.  It's finally starting to warm up in New England and I am so ready for summer.  This quilt makes it feel like it's already here:-)

Back in February I found a couple Sunshine Roses charm packs while cleaning up my quilt studio hoping for a bit of inspiration.  I turned them into pinwheels thinking maybe they'd be a shabby chic Valentine's quilt. Didn't happen and they disappeared back into the mess.

Then April rolled around and I found them again when I was working on my Q2 Finish Along list.  I threw them up on my design wall and played around with layouts until I found something I liked and got them stitched together.

It's kind of amazing that I got this basted and into the quilting queue so quickly but after a week of rainy days quilting this was the closest thing to sunshine I was going to get.  I did mark my lines in advance and used a variation of this tutorial by Petit Design Co. for orange peel quilting using my walking foot.  Pippin Sequim also has a fabulous orange peel tutorial you should check out.

I love the added dimension and texture it adds to the quilt!!!

And I'm still crushing on striped bindings:-)

Soaking up some sunshine with this week's Finish it Up Friday by Crazy Mom Quilts and a finish for Q2 of the 2016 Finish Along.

Quilt Stats:
Finished quilt is 46" x 46"
Fabrics: Sunshine Roses by Tanya Whelan, Shabby Chic White.  Binding: Wild Rose by Marti Michell for Maywood Studios.
Batting: Quilter's Dream Orient Bamboo.
Thread: 50 wt. Aurifil in  Natural White (2021).

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

W.i.P. Wednesday: On Track

I'd have sworn I didn't get anything done this week but looking around my studio there's actually evidence that I did...

I finished up my second Island Life mini so now I have a neighborhood.  For this one I moved things around and extended the Carribean blue so I could be on the canal:-)

I also quilted my Briar Rose Stair Steps quilt.  I obsessed about doing these butterflies way longer than it actually took to do them.  I was inspired by the Flutter Bys pantograph and with a little practice mastered doing them free motion.  This is definitely a pattern I'll use again!

After a series of thread mishaps and multiple trips to Quilter's Way I've got the binding on and am ready for a good movie to hand tack it down.

And I got some La Pas prep work done in time for tonight's final Hand Sewing Happy Hour.

I've got plenty of handwork lined up just in time for things to heat up!!!  What are you working on now that warmer weather is arriving?

Friday, May 13, 2016

Island Life

I got off to a slow start with the May is for Makers campaign.  I did buy the pattern and pull fabric to make some Lakeside Pajamas... I just never made them.  This week I wanted to do something quilty so I purchased this collection of Mini Quilts by Cluck Cluck Sew.  I'd had an idea for a Florida Keys inspired house quilt ever since I saw the awesome Seacoast MQG QuiltCon Charity quilt so now seemed like a good time to experiment a bit.

I went a little crazy pulling a stack of solids.  The pattern has you make 4 fabric pairs so from each set you get 2 houses with the colors inverted.  I ended up making 8 pairings so I used each color combo once and I have enough left over for a second mini.

Of course I couldn't just stick to the pattern and since it's supposed to be an island I swapped the sky at the top for some ocean on the bottom and used the same Carribean blue for the binding.

I fell in love with these  wavy organic lines when I was quilting Preppy the Whale.  They're so quick and easy, especially after a glass of wine or two;-)

After I'd pulled my fabrics I spotted this awesome fishy print in the fabric graveyard on my way out of Quilter's Way.  It's like it was meant to be!!!  I love how the wavy quilting makes the fish swim.

And since I have way too much time on my hands...  a little freshly squeezed blood orange juice to remind me of home.

Stitching along with this week's Finish it Up Friday by Crazy Mom Quilts.

Quilt Stats:
Finished quilt is 12" x 14"
Pattern: Suburbs Mini by Cluck Cluck Sew.
Fabrics: Michael Miller Cotton Couture: Cloud, Carribean, Tangerine, Sprout, Shell, Mango, Seafoam, Canary, Love, Mist, Coral, Pastille, and Lemon.  FSDS McCaw.
Backing: Brandon Mably Shoal Fish Yellow.
Batting: Quilter's Dream Request Poly.
Thread: 50 wt. Aurifil in  Light Turquoise (5006).
May Is For Makers |

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Pineapple Passion

I have something of a passion for pineapples.  It started with finding the pineapple on Psych and then somehow became a thing... so when I saw Jackie Padesky's pineapple quilt and the craze she started on Instagram I knew I had to make one.

After my marathon quilting jag it was time for something fun so I raided my stash bin and got started.  Yellow isn't really my color so I was amazed how many scraps I had to choose from.

From there it was easy to pull the top together.  I had a lot of strips and squares precut to 2 1/2" so I used that as my base.  Do you cut your scraps to size a la Bonnie Hunter and Pat Sloan or just toss things in your scrap bin?

I was on a roll so I went ahead and quilted it with a simple crosshatch and for once didn't run out of thread.  I spotted this mint green P&B Linen Texture in my stash, perfect for the binding.

I may have had a little too much fun with last week's cocktail quilt shoot...  my new guilty pleasure.  Pineapple Mojitos were just the thing for a beautiful sunny day!

Since I already had all the HSTs I went ahead and made a second one that I turned into a pillow which Audrey promptly stole.  She's been growing her own pineapple for the last two years and it finally started to bloom...  she might be even more obsessed than me:-)

Scraptastic Tuesday
This one barely made a dent in the scrap bin but I'm still sharing it with this month's Scraptastic Tuesday.  Check out how others are busting their scraps.

Quilt Stats:
Finished quilt is 12" x 18"
Fabrics: Assorted yellows and greens from the scrap bin.
Batting: Quilter's Dream Orient Bamboo.
Thread: 50 wt. Aurifil in  Light Lemon (2110).

Friday, May 6, 2016

Mash Up

I was hoping for some sunshine and May flowers to do today's photo shoot but I had to settle for a break in the rain.  I'm sick of this weather but I can pretend it's summer with this cheerful quilt.  This was something simple I whipped up with some stash and most of what was left from a bundle of Briar Rose.  I might have gotten a bit obsessed with this fabric:-)

I kept the quilting simple... just straight lines 1/4" from the seams.  Absolutely perfect for when I needed a break from the chaos of vacation week.  I could just pop in to my studio and sew a few lines before we were off and running to the next activity.

And I got the binding tacked during family movie night...  I so love a striped binding!!!

As much as I love this a friend just had a baby girl so I think this one will be a gift.  If I'm feeling really generous I may even throw in a matching pillow;-)

Checking in at this week's Finish it Up Friday by Crazy Mom Quilts and my first finish for Q2 of the 2016 Finish Along.

Quilt Stats:
Finished quilt is 41" x 50"
Fabrics: Briar Rose by Heather Ross and Stash.  Binding Happier by Riley Blake.
Batting: Quilter's Dream Orient Bamboo.
Thread: 50 wt. Aurifil in  Natural White (2021).

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Throwback Thursday: It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere

alidiza: It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere...  Happy Cinco de Mayo!!!
As soon as I realized this month's Throwback Thursday fell on Cinco de Mayo I knew which quilt I had to dig out!  I added the mega-rita for scale...  I love it when a quilting photo shoot requires cocktails for props!

alidiza: It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere
I made this from a kit I bought at Keepsake Quilting back in the early 2000s.  A pattern, batiks, and raw-edge fusible applique... not really things I do much of anymore but it definitely makes for a fun quilt to have hanging around.

alidiza: It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere
My favorite part is the sign, those palm trees kill me!

alidiza: It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere...  Happy Cinco de Mayo!!!
Muchas gracias to A Quarter Inch from the Edge for hosting this fiesta:-)

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

W.i.P. Wednesday: Time Keeps on Slippin', Slippin', Slippin'

Your earworm for the day:-)  I don't know why I always think I'm going to get things done during school vacation week.  Even though we didn't go away it was a busy week of camps, practices, and family outings so while my plans for a marathon long quilting day didn't materialize I did manage fit in a little bit of quilting each day...

And those bits do add up!  I finished all the spirals on my Spellbound quilt but then ran out of thread with 3 snowballs left to outline.  Here's the problem with using thread your LQS doesn't stock...  I was trying to use up some old King Tut variegated which none of my local shops carry so now this is back in the queue until I psych myself up for a trip to Portsmouth or I break down and order it online.

With that on hold I switched to this Heather Ross Mash Up.  Easy peasy straight line quilting along the grid lines and the binding was on ready for some family movie night time to get it tacked down.

And then I moved on to quilting Sunshine Roses.  I wanted to go with something curvy so I'm doing an orange peel design.  I decided to mark the arcs which probably takes just as long as quilting them but I love how it's coming out...  I still have my Briar Rose Stair Steps variation and Houndstooth quilts TBQ but after 3 in a row I think I'm going to give myself a break and switch gears.  I'm sure you've heard about the May is for Makers campaign.  I'm going to join the fun and support the community of independent designers by trying out a new indie pattern each week.  Following a pattern is not my strong suit so stay tuned and see how it goes.
May Is For Makers |