Sunday, March 21, 2021
Saturday, March 06, 2021
Saturday, February 20, 2021
I almost didn't start a project for this week's Project Quilting Challenge. All week, I just didn't feel like sewing or crafting. I did a bit here and there...a few blocks for a baby clothes quilt I'm making (for an acquaintance)...
|I decided to keep a few of the owner's baby clothes as is for this memory quilt. The dresses and little boy jammies are just too cute to cut up!
and playing around with an idea for spool carrots for my Easter mantel.
|These are still a work in progress, but I'm kind of smitten! Primitive spool carrots! Swoon!
But, several nights I just sat on the couch after dinner and looked at pictures of other people's sewing and crafting projects. It was a long week at school. Inside recesses, standardized testing, substitute teachers...all of those in the same week make things trickier than usual in my Special Ed world. Actually, my trickiest kiddos all had a really good week, but some of my "easy" kids picked up the slack. Things just felt off balance all week, and with a migraine Tuesday through Friday...I had no interest in sewing. I kept an eye on everybody else's "snail trail inspired" challenge pieces as they were being posted and hashtagged. I thought maybe inspiration would strike and I'd find my sew-jo and start a project around mid-week. It didn't.
On Friday night I decided I'd just make a few snail trail blocks and see where things went. I pulled burgundy and gold (mustard yellow) scraps and made a few 4 squares. The colors were inspired by our trip to Chicago last weekend to visit the Loyola University campus. I am thinking my daughter's wardrobe is going to be heavily populated by those colors in the next few months, as it's looking like that's where she's going to school!! There are still two other possibilities, but, we all liked the Loyola campus, and it just felt like someplace she belonged. She has loved Chicago since she was a little girl, and has thought about going to college there since she started high school. Loyola offers the Chicago experience without being right down town. So, I'm feeling pretty good about the possibilities.
On Saturday morning, I looked up a couple of snail trail patterns and tutorials. I couldn't find measurements that fit my blocks or my scrap sizes...so...I kind of winged it. I laid my 4-square patch on my mat along one of the diagonal lines to see how big my triangles for the next "round" needed to be. Then I cut squares accordingly, cutting those squares on the diagonal. It worked, more or less. My blocks were a little wonky, but, since I didn't really have a plan yet, I wasn't too worried. It was fun to figure things out as I went along. The block is kind of, but I don't think I'd ever make a quilt worth of them! It's been a while since I've made actual quilt blocks, and I had forgotten how laborious cutting, pressing, trimming, squaring up, etc. can be! These four squares took me a couple hours!
While I might never make a snail trail quilt, I think I WILL try spiral quilting again! It was perfect for this little mini quilt and it was SO fast! I love the way it looks on the front and the back, too.
As I was cutting my binding, I was dreading the joining step. It always takes me a few tries and on such a small project, I just wasn't feeling like putting in that much effort. I remembered seeing how someone used a bit of ribbon to cover where the binding ends meet, and decided I would try that. But, Instead of ribbon, I thought I'd put a little message in the binding for my daughter. I remembered a text print that I'd used on the back of a t-shirt quilt several years ago.
There were several words I could have used. "Persistence," "Wisdom," "Dream," "Accomplishments." But, "Possibilities" felt right. There are SO many possibilities open to her at this stage in her life, even if it feels like COVID takes something new away every week. She can use this as a large mug/snack rug, or a little wall quilt for her dorm room (fingers and crossed the world is somewhat normal by fall and she can move into a dorm room!). It will be a touch of home and a reminder that the world is FULL of possibilities.
I'm really glad I dug in and finished a project this week. Quilting, sewing and crafting are always the best therapy for me. I felt the balance returning and just felt happier as I worked. Plus, its such fun to be a part of the Project Quilting Challenges. There have been more than 200 entries each week so far this year. Isn't that awesome? More than 600 new "quilts" are out there in the world because of PQ. I can't wait to see what everyone does this week with their snail trail inspired projects. Thanks Kim and Trish for another fun week! Can't believe we're more than half way done with the season!!
Saturday, February 06, 2021
I am SO in need of a vacation, and I have been, for a very long time. This time last year, I decided it was time to do something about the fact that we have not taken a trip to anywhere but a neighboring state since my teenagers were in elementary school. I planned a California vacation that would have taken us along a good stretch of the coast over our 10 day Spring Break in early April, 2020 "Planned" is kind of a loose term. "Daydreamed" might be more accurate. My youngest daughter (who has cystic fibrosis) had been facing many health challenges for the past year, and I dragged my feet actually making travel arrangements because I just wasn't sure she was going to be well enough for us to go. I had an itinerary and figured we'd wait until mid March to find flights and hotels and a rental car and just wing it. Ha! Mid-March had other plans! We spent the 10 days of Spring Break at home, like the rest of the world. Fortunately, I had NO money tied up in my imaginary vacation. We lost nothing and have had no nightmares related to re-scheduling like so many. Sometimes, hesitation pays!
A year later, I am still very much in need of a vacation. The snow and cold we're having here is Wisconsin have me longing for the warm sun, the sound of the ocean, sand under my feet and the sweet smell of flowers in the air.
I chose to make tropical flowers the focus of my Project Quilting piece for this week's theme - Virtual Vacation. I thought about some specific destinations. But, the truth is, I'm not really picky at this point. My dream vacation right now is any place warm and tropical. I could have represented sand, sun and sea, but its the colors in the flowers that I'm craving most in our white covered world right now.
I cut the hibiscus flower shape from iron-on vinyl on my new Cricut. This is the first time I downloaded an image to use, and the first time I've used the heat transfer vinyl. There's a pretty steep learning curve involved in learning the ins and outs of the Cricut - or at east there is for me. So, incorporating the Cricut into this challenge piece helps meet my goal making one Cricut project per week until I feel like I know what I'm doing.
It was really easy and fun to cut the shape and adhere it to my fabric. And I love the way it looks with the favorite print from my stash. It's been quite a while since I have sewn a zipper pouch. I had to look up a tutorial to refresh my memory, and even then, I put the zipper in backward on my first try. But, its all good.
Pop over to Kim's blog to see all the marvelous places we Challenge Participants are dreaming of! Judging from the number of Hawaiian and beach themed projects, I think Kim and Trish should maybe plan a quilt retreat on Maui for 2022...ladies? You in?
Sunday, January 24, 2021
When I think of fussy cutting, I think of novelty prints. From the projects that have already been linked up to this week's Project Quilting Challenge, I am learning that I need to expand my idea! There are so many different ways to interpret the technique! My stash is limited in novelty prints, so I went with a large floral print to use for the challenge. I can't remember how I acquired this Charming Circles ruler. I might have bought it at a quilt show. But, seems to remember that it was part of a swap package years ago. In any case, I've never used it, and this seemed like a good time.
Its a fun little tool! I learned that stretch denim is NOT the way to go when using it. And, I don't love my final project. There's not enough contrast between the floral and the denim. And, the flowers aren't oriented quite right. And it doesn't lay flat. It will probably be scrapped and turned into something else. Oh well! They can't all be winners! I had fun, I used a tool that had been sitting around and finally touched some of the denim scraps that have been in a basket for a LONG time! Wins all around.
Now I'm off to link up to this week's post over at Kim's site. Then, I'll get back to my self declared Winter Crafting Weekend. Coffee, slipper socks, cozy clothes and my new Cricut to explore when I'm not sewing! Heavenly! Maybe I'll even come back to do a post when I finish some of my projects.
Hope you all find a little bit of crafty/sewing bliss this week!
Saturday, January 09, 2021
Sunday, June 21, 2020
| Assembly line sewing is supposed to make the process go quickly, but this batch felt like it took a week!
|First time making kids' sizes.
|This dress was a force to be reckoned with! More than 4 yards around the bottom and
|I watched a lot of home improvement shows while working on these little houses. Fitting!
|It was fun to watch this quilt grow!
|Looked down and realized that the zinnias in the bucket were a perfect match for the backing!
|I sat and stitched until almost 9:00 on the longest night of summer! Perfect!
|Happy, Scrappy Stars.