Saturday, February 12, 2011

My Block #5 for Bloggers’ Block-a-palooza Quilt-along

Here is the next block for the Bloggers’ Block-a-palooza. Block #5 Geesey McNinePatch was created and presented by Kaye of Miss Print. I think this block has been MY most challenging block to day in this QAL. Kaye brought us a block filled with flying geese as well as another technique for creating them which I always welcome.

Let me first clarify why I felt so challenged by this block. Well it was the geese. Even though I have been doing geese in almost every block so far I have not had so many in one row till now. I have to say that I like Kaye’s technique for making them, I’m just not sure where I went wrong. In the end my geese did not fly straight so it left my block very crooked.

Rest assured though this block has not beaten me. I will be redoing this block when I have a chance to before the end of the QAL. I love a challenge and this definitely is one for me. I will get those geese to fly straight.

I have to just stop and say here that I really appreciate this and other quilt-alongs because they are giving me a real chance to grow as a sewist and quilter. Learning new techniques and block layouts is always fun. I think that is what has inspired me to make some of my own variations on these blocks. As you will see I didn’t do a regular nine patch in the center but ended up with what looks like a snow ball from a distance.

I’m not sure if I will be going back to the regular nine patch in my redo or not we shall see, it all depends on how I feel at that time.

Ok I present my finished block #5.

Note this picture was not taken at an angle. You can see how truly off my block is.

Now head over to the Flicker group to see what everyone else is doing. See you there.

So until the next block, happy sewing!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Cherry House Quilt QAL Week 2: Pieced Columns

So we have entered week 2 of the CHQ quilt-along and things are progressing nicely. I am happy with my results so far and also surprised how straight my columns came out. Yes this week we did our columns and I have to admit I had fun doing them. They didn’t take a lot of time piecing them together and I helps me to be more patient when doing my piece work.

We are always in a rush to complete everything but some things in life like quilting you should take time and pay attention to details. I found that if you want your columns to be straight you can’t just zoom through them. All it takes is one set to be off and then you whole column is off.

I’ve had fun so far doing this quilt I am very much considering doing another on a larger scale, we shall see. In the mean time here are my columns. Below you will se a close up and full length pictures of my columns.

It is not too late to join in on this QAL if you go to the Flicker group you can not only see the pictures of everyone’s progress but Cherri has also put up the links to her blog to find the information to join in.

So until next Tuesday, happy sewing!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

My Block #4 for Bloggers’ Block-a-palooza Quilt-along

Here is the next block for the Bloggers’ Block-a-palooza. Block #4 Gingham Pinwheel was created and presented by Cherri of Cherry House Quilts. I love this block because she took those geese and turned them into a pinwheel.

I must say I have been having a lot of fun with this quilt-along and by the end if I am not a wiz at creating a flying geese piece I will be very surprised. This block kept things very simple but very versatile. It lends it’s hand to personalization without losing the effect of the original block. That is how I came up with my version of it. With very subtle changes I was able to achieve a double pinwheel affect that I love.

I followed the easy instructions she posted but changed the color layout for one piece to give me the look I wanted.

Here are my flying geese for this block.

Here is where I varied slightly from Cherri’s design. I used a contrasting fabric for the rectangle that sets adjacent to the flying geese which gave me a double pinwheel.

Ok there we go here is my finished block #4.

Now head over to the Flicker group to see what everyone else is doing. See you there.

So until the next block, happy sewing!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Quilt-along Number 2 with Cherry House Quilts

Ok as I wrote in my clean up post I am working to join as many quilt-alongs this year as I can to help me dwindle down the size of my fabric stash. Well here is my second quilt-along.

Cherri from Cherry House Quilts has set up a quilt-along that starts at the beginning of February. She says the quilt in this quilt-along was inspired by a pair of socks so she decided that the name will be the Socken (German for socks) Quilt-along. If you would like to follow along you can find information here, a schedule and shopping list here and cutting instructions here. There is a Flicker group set up for all of us to upload photos of our progress. There is even a button you can put on your blog found here.

The quilt design is very modern looking and it calls for solid fabrics. However, as I am working solely with my current fabric stash so my fabrics will be a mix of solid and print fabrics.

Here is the list and photos of my fabric picks:

Background: Tan (solid)

Binding: Muted Yellow Roses

Color Strips: Yellow Paisley
Mustard Scroll
Yellow tone on tone dots
Brown Stripe

Backing: Tan Fan Motif

Ok according to the schedule next will be PIECED COLUMNS on 2/8/11 so keep watching to Cherry House Quilts for the next part of the quilt-along.

I just want to thank Cherri for setting up this quilt-along I think it will be great fun.

So until next time, happy sewing!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Big Clean Up 2011

As I have gotten back into my sewing and quilting I am finding that I am not alone when it comes to having a fabric stash that is a little out of hand. I have to admit the amount of fabric is less than what I have seen of others but it is the fact that a lot of the fabric I have had for many, many years and something needs to be done. Ok I have identified the problem now on to a solution.

One thing I have been doing is trying to tackle a new project at least every week. Well I have to tell you it was going well in the beginning and then it came to a stand still until….I found other bloggers who have/are putting together quilt-alongs or other tutorial sessions for sewing projects.

I thought about joining a quilting bee at first but I think that was just to much for me to tackle at this time. However when I found my first quilt-along, Bloggers’ Block-a-palozza at Quilt Dad I thought this could be just the thing for me. I am working only from my current fabric stash which is helping me use it and it is helping me to time manage my quilting/sewing. I have to admit that if I don’t finish a project right away I can get bored with it and then I start a new one. My shelf is littered with unfinished projects but no more. I promised myself that 2011 would be the year I cleaned out my stash.

This year I will try to join as many quilt-alongs and try different projects such as pillows, bags, book covers, etc. that by the end of 2011 my stash will be next to nothing. I know that sounds weird but I think I need to start focusing on buying when needed or buying when there is a definite project to be made. No more buying just because it is pretty or there is a major sale going on (my biggest weakness).

So here’s to 2011 the year of the Clean Up. I will keep you informed on my projects and my progress.

So until the next time, happy sewing.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mama Tiger Pillow

A few weeks ago my daughter, who doesn’t sew, came to me and asked if I could help her send a package to her husband who is deployed at the moment. She wanted to make sure that she sent him a package so that it would arrive to him for Valentine’s Day.

Well I thought ok maybe I can sew him something but I knew something like a quilt would not be done in time so I looked though my fabric and had these panels with animals on them I was going to use several years ago but never got around to it. The funny thing is that the panels had a tiger motif on two pieces of and pandas on another. You may be asking “Why is that so funny Marisa?” Well my daughter and son-in-law have nicknames for each other and they just so happened to Mama Tiger and Papa Panda, go figure.

My Daughter Staci and her husband David

I have been sitting on this fabric for a long time and didn’t think much about it until I began reorganizing my fabric stash and voila.

Ok here is the pillow I made for my son-in-law. I didn’t take step-by-step photos but here is the finished pillow from a few angles.


The front is from a panel piece which included a border along the edge which I used fro the sides as you can see in the next photo.

Front and Side


The back was from another tiger fabric I had and the colors worked so well together.

It was just filled with fiber fill so it will be easily washed when needed.

I think this pillow came out really well now I have to make a panda one for my daughter. I don’t have a panda panel like with the tiger so I’ll have to find a design that will show off the pandas in the fabric. I will most likely be fussy cutting.

So until the next pillow, happy sewing!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

My Block #3 for Bloggers’ Block-a-palooza Quilt-along

On to block #3 which comes from Amanda at Sasikirana Homemade. Block #3 Shoofly Geese is her variation on the traditional Shoofly quilt block. It looks very simple and a great addition to the Bloggers’ Block-a-palooza.

Here is a look at a traditional Shoo-Fly Block Pattern [1]

Amanda’s pattern cleverly adds the flying geese in it and all of a sudden the block has movement, you can almost visualize those geese flying to some unknown destination.

If you have been following the quilt-along then you will know from the tutorials so far that even though blocks #1 and #3 have flying geese the approach to making them were completely different. I really like that because it gives us all a chance to learn something new or practice a technique we have not mastered yet.

Thanks Amanda for your work, I’m sure we will have loads of fun with this block.

Next you will see photos of my fabric choices and my finished block #3. I have also included photos of the layout of two versions of my block 3 because I wasn’t sure which one I liked better. In the first one I have the flying geese pointing inward toward the center like Amanda’s block and in the second one I have the geese pointing outward. I like the one where the geese are pointing outward but I feel that I may be straying to far from the block that was created by Amanda because the look is a total change.

Fabric Set

Amanda’s Shoo-Fly Variation and My Variation

Ultimately I did finish block #3 with the geese point outward as you can see below. In the end the finished quilt will be mine so I guess putting my own spin on things is ok now and then.

Ok there we go you can see my finished block #3.

Now head over to the Flicker group to see what everyone else is doing. See you there.

So until the next block, happy sewing!

[1] Image for traditional Shoo-fly quilt block pattern found here.