Friday, May 22, 2015

May quilt #3--for a baby

As a break from the last quilt, I broke open a couple of charm packs of Ansonia fabric and finished up a quilt I had patiently waiting in a bin. I used a disappearing four-patch pattern, which is a four-patch cut up and rearranged as shown in this Youtube video by Missouri Quilt Company. It ended up at around 40" x 48".

It is raining again so indoor pics only:

I decided to go with a polka dot instead of a solid just because. I have liked quilts I have seen that used it, and thought it would work well with the Ansonia fabric.

The backing is also a Denyse Schmidt fabric from her DQ Quilts line at Joann. And probably from the red tag clearance rack since I had enough of it to cover the whole back.

I will probably sell this one, since I don't have any babies in mind for it. But I'll need it to stop raining long enough to get some better pics. {edit: it stopped a bit! now listed here} Too bad I didn't finish it yesterday. I think we only get one sunny day a week right now, definitely not typical Oklahoma weather!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

May quilt #2 - a king-sized commission

One of my friends commissioned me to make a quilt and I made it into quite a challenge for myself. She wanted a king size one and gave me some direction on the colors. Knowing all of that, I worked to find a quilt with a larger block size to make it a bit easier overall.

After looking through my options, I chose an orange peel block from the Ahead of the Curve quilt in the Scrappy Quilts book. I had been eyeing in for awhile but hadn't had the guts to try it yet. Choosing it meant I needed to cut all of the pieces with scissors instead of my rotary cutter because I would trash the template trying to go around the curve. That was a lot of scissor time. And then careful piecing around the curves (my first quilt with curves!). The best part was after I got it all pieced together, I liked it. That does NOT always happen.

With the storm cancellations all last week and weekend, I was able to finish the quilting and binding much more quickly than I expected. I did bag it up on Friday after I had sandwiched it together, when the weather started looking a little iffy again. It was going with me to the basement if I had to go there.

Modeled on my queen size bed:

I finished it with a solid binding to match the 8" border around the patterned blocks, as was shown in the original pattern. I omitted an inner border that didn't fit with what I wanted to do and added a few more blocks to make it king-sized.

And that's it! It's off to the owner and I have started another one. This one is squares--precut squares--and straight line cutting using a couple of charm packs of Ansonia fabric.
 It is good to mix it up a little and keep it fresh!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

May quilt 1: stripes for Riley

For the past two years I have been mentoring an elementary student through my church's Kids Hope USA mentoring partnership. She is in 5th grade this year and will be moving on to middle school, so this occasion warrants a quilt! Sometime a few months ago I hauled some magazines to the school and we talked quilts. She drew what she wanted, a zebra striped quilt with her name on it in blue glitter fabric for her bed.

So--here it is. I went with the Crazy Stripes pattern from the book Quilting Happiness, and modified the size to fit a twin sized bed.

The back is a polka dot from JoAnn.

I took the pictures inside my church today because it has been raining A LOT and I did not want mud on this. It also seemed fitting since I wouldn't have known her well enough to make her a quilt without this mentoring partnership between our church and her school. It is an awesome program and a great way for people who care about children to help them get a better chance in life by meeting with them one hour a week, possibly preventing poverty, high school drop-outs, teenage pregnancy, and even trafficking victims.

Hope she loves the quilt! We even match it!

Monday, May 4, 2015

time away

I have been sewing a lot this past week (finishes coming soon!) and haven't taken the time to post much on here. A couple of weekends ago, my son had a second soccer tourney, this time out of town. We were able to stay with grandparents--and they got to see a LOT of soccer.

From one of the Saturday games:

The flowers at my in-laws house were beautiful and inspired my daughter's creativity. In between games, my daughter had art time. She left the deck covered in glitter. Really.

Sunday was more soccer, with an early morning game, a long rest break and then the finals.

They won!

They are a great group of boys and they all had a great time that weekend. They get to play that final team again this weekend (maybe twice) as part of their regular season, and it will be interesting to see the outcome of those matchups. My daughter may have a mini-tourney this weekend as well, her first. I will do my best to finish up at least one of the three "almost done" quilts so that I can post something on here besides soccer before then!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

since the zoo

Since I went to the zoo, I attended six soccer games. Well, seven now. I just got back from one. That is a lot of outdoor time, and the weather was gorgeous for most of it.

I also went on a staff retreat. It was a mix of meetings and alone time and eating and a bit of craziness to liven it up. I liked being outside there too.

I also drew and painted. I have been inspired by a Creativebug class by Heather Ross called Drawing and Illustration Basics. It helps having other ideas of what to draw, with reminders to look at all the bits all around us. The blank white page is SO intimidating.

at Thursday night soccer practice

the sunset at the Friday night soccer game (finished at the retreat)

also from the retreat
I thought a while about taking some quilt things with me for our quiet time, but realized that although it is something I do for down time for me, that sewing machine is NOT quiet. So it stayed home to rest. It will get to work for me soon enough.

I also read The Dovekeepers (mostly at the retreat). I listened to this podcast called Disciples Disciple by Jen Hatmaker, although I had to break it up in bits because I was no longer at the retreat and did not have the three hours of alone time. I may try to listen again tomorrow, if the little "to-do" list I am making in my head doesn't grow too large to allow that.

Looking forward to the weekend and many more opportunities to sit outside (i.e. one more soccer tournament) and enjoy the sun and all that it is helping grow. I love the green of spring. Even if it does make me sneeze.

Friday, April 17, 2015

first zoo trip of the year

Thursday I met a bunch of 1st graders at the zoo and got to spend a wonderful spring day in the sunshine with three giggly buddies.

One of my favorite changes at the zoo was at the Island Life exhibit. They have taken down the giant wooden fence, so we can now see the flamingos up close.

The girls slowed down after lunch. We spent a while at the ape exhibit, watching the baby.
the newest gorilla, born March 24
They LOVED posing on all of the statues. Unfortunately by this time of day the metal was getting pretty hot. This part was in the shade though.

So thankful for the chance to go on the trip with my daughter, a speedy recovery from her stomach bug the day before, and rain clouds that decided to go elsewhere. And those awesome peacock feathers--amazing.