Saturday, January 30, 2010

almost there!

I'm in Chicago right now, waiting for the last flight of the day. the FIFTH flight of the day. 37 hours, 7 time zones, 2 hemispheres and 2 continents later, I'll be home on the same day I left. time travel blows my mind. :)

thanks to everyone who's been blogging away while I was gone...I have a blog reader on my phone that downloads posts and pix so I can read them without internet...which made my flight from san fran to here much more pleasant. :)

while reading through posts and challenges, I've found a lot of inspiration...obviously. :) however, I'm happy to say that I've also started finding the limits of what inspires me and started finding things that just make me go "meh. maybe in a few years but not high priority." wool anything, for example. blech, that just makes me itch...and I know there's merino out there (I know this now!) but that's expensive. and possum wool just makes me think of roadkill, sorry. :)

there's a star pattern...starts with an H, has 8 points, can't remember the name of it but I flagged someone's post about it...that REALLY got me going. I think that might be the pattern I used for Mai's quilt. we'll see.

they're calling my flight...more later!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Quick Update While I'm Waiting for a Towel...

I'm still in NZ, but didn't bring a towel with me...there's no point in buying one since I'll only need one (maybe two) more showers until I go home, so I need to borrow one...but the front desk doesn't open til 9.  It's still 830.  Quel fromage.  For now, here's what's been going on:

Queenstown was fun.  I went bungee jumping for the first time ever, off of NZ's highest jump (440 ft!).  It was incredible.  Feel free to watch me do stupid things here.  :-)  Dad's response was "You need a Mommy down there very VERY badly!!" 
After that, I went on a tour of the LOTR sites in the area...there are a lot around there, so it was a long tour.  We even got to dress up and play with swords (pix to follow, they charge by the MB for internet here). 

I found a store with local fabrics, which was cool.  I managed to stub my toe on the way up to the store, and took off a dime-sized chunk of skin from the bottom of it...not a good thing when you're about to embark on 8 days of cycling...the store owner laughed and gave me tissues and bandaids and antiseptic.  It healed nicely and didn't really hurt at all, just bled a lot.  I digress.  The fabrics I got are total (including the 3 I got in Dunedin), I have 8 fat quarters of NZ fabric.  I'm happy with that.  I also found some awesome Paddington fabric yesterday, but I'll get to that.

I met up with my coworker, Amanda, and headed off onto this 8-day trek.  I think I ran the numbers right, and I ended up doing about 190 miles across 5 days of actual cycling.  One of the days I did a metric century (102 km actually), which meant I made it the whole way...I was quite happy with myself, even if my bum was not. 

We went from mountains to fjords to lakes to farms to forest to ocean to farms to more farms (there are a LOT of farms here) and finally to ocean again.  We got stopped for a while because some farmers were trying to bring some lambs down to a new paddock, and they took up the whole road to do it.  I have video, I'll post it later. 

We stayed on a farm one night (a working sheep and cattle (NOT dairy) farm), which was fun...the food was incredible.  All the veggies were fresh from their garden...yummmm.  I could live with veggies that fresh always. 

Night before last, we stayed at Larnach Castle.  Basically, a guy with an ego and a lot of money built the only castle in NZ.  The food was meh, but the views were spectacular. 

Yesterday, I doinked around Dunedin and went to the Cadbury factory in town for a tour.  Best tour ever...they give free samples all along the way. I couldn't eat all of it, that's how much they give you!  The Speight's brewery is just up the street from my hostel as well, so I went and quality-checked some of their beers last night.  The summer ale seemed a little suspect though, so I might have to go inspect that one again tonight.  We'll see.  :-) 

In any case, it's 9 am and I need a shower like you wouldn't believe.  So I'm gonna go find myself a towel and update this more when I'm back stateside.  Cheers!

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Best airport ever!  (FTW = "for the win" for those of you not up on the nerd lingo)  I was sitting in the domestic terminal before, because I had a bottle of water and wanted to finish it before going through security again. I wandered around some, then found out that...bam!  No security to get to the international terminal! There's a secret passage by gate 75 that takes you right to the international terminal, close enough to security that you can thumb your nose at those poor suckers, but not actually outside of security!  w00t!  Now I just gotta chill out for 2.5 hours before I get on a plane and sit some more...for another...16 hours.  That's two full working days!  Yikes! 

Good news is, my plane is already here:

On the plane here, I started a new journal, daydreaming about quilts I'm going to make.  The list is as follows (in no particular order):
  • Quilts for Kids -  I just got the kit before I left, so I'm itching to get back to this one.  I think I'm going to try free motion quilting for the first time.  Tips would be appreciated. 
  • Alishia's string quilt - I still need to name this one, but I haven't figured out the pattern of the strings yet, so that's hard.  
  • Mai's graduation quilt - this one is going to be black, white, and red.  I'm thinking of doing a heartstrings quilt for this, but I'm not sure.  I have about 2 dozen fat quarters up for grabs for this one so far, as well as a few fun remnants.  It'll definitely be a work of chaos.  Suggestions for this one are welcome too...keep in mind that Mai is my 17-year-old mentee, who's graduating high school in June.  My mom made me a quilt when I went off to college and it helped me be not so homesick...I figured Mai could use the same. 
  • Alishia's donation quilt - This one has to be a HeartStrings donation, because I said so lol.  Should be fairly straightforward...I'll need new reds, but I have PLENTY of blues left over from my mom's quilt. 
  • Mai's donation quilt - I haven't decided on a charity for this one, but it seems fitting that it should be something that helps teens...specifically teens in trouble.  Maybe I'll find a shelter around Boston, sort of like here.
  • Mom's Paddington quilt - As previously described.  I won that panel, so that rocks.  I'll have to see how big the inside is when I get it, then plan the rest out from there.  
  • Arman's I Spy quilt - I'm hoping to find some flexible, toddler-friendly velcro someplace so I can make the pictures movable but still semi-permanent.  I'll keep you posted on how that goes. 
  • The t-shirt quilt - I think I'm not even going to plan this out until I have a better feel for the size of the shirt cuts. 
  • A crumb quilt - I've been seeing a lot of these in various blogs lately, and I LOVE the idea!  I want to make this one for myself.  I have a trunk that Nick got me for my birthday (an old steamer trunk) that really needs some quilts in it.  Sadly, everything I own is currently used to keep me warm at night, so I don't have anything in there!  
  • A memory quilt - this one I came up with when I was thinking about what I'll be doing in Queenstown.  There's a fabric store about 15 minutes walking from my hostel, which I fully intend to patronize.  I was thinking that it would be REALLY cool to get fabrics from there (and make this a tradition for every place I go), then make a quilt of them.  Each block would have a picture from the trip printed on fabric in the center, then the fabric I buy on the trip would surround it in some pattern.  Make a few of those blocks and bam!  You got yerself a memory quilt!  We'll see how that works out.  
Of those 10 projects, 7 I want to have finished by July.  Yikes.  We'll see how that goes.  Nick is apparently going down to Florida the week after I get back, so I'll have all night every night (except Wednesday, which is class night) to sew to my heart's content.  I'm absolutely looking forward to it.  (Which isn't to say I won't miss him, it's just I get to feeling guilty (ha! almost typed "quilty") when he's around and I'm ignoring him for the sewing machine.)  

On that note, I'm gonna hulu it up while I still can (you can't get hulu outside the US) and blow the next 2 hours watching TV and writing postcards (which I won't be able to send until I'm back because they no longer have mail boxes in airports...for security reasons.  Riddle me that.)

Hello San Francisco!

I bought myself a TMobile HotSpot daypass just so I could log on and blog (on), so I hope y'all appreciate this!  :-P  I have about 4 hours until my next flight, and I've already eaten whatever meal I was hungry for (I've been going since about 8 this morning, EST.  It's about 4 PST, which is 7 EST, which is my dinner time...I think. I get in to Auckland around 5 AM Auckland time, but that's 5 AM on the 18th...2 days from now.  BUT that's only noon on the 17th EST, so I'll be getting in for breakfast time but be craving lunch.  My poor poor body.)

In any case.

I was up finishing the binding on the pink one until about midnight last night, but I got it done...that's what counts, right?  Nick will put the boxes (one to San Antonio and one to Centerville, UT for Levi) in the mail for me on Monday.  I learned a very very important lesson last night.  Just because the kids' scissors are cheaper, it is absolutely worth the extra cash to buy the big-girl scissors.  Especially when all you need them for is to cut thread and "rag" a rag quilt.  Ouch. 

That's me up at the top of the board there!  

I'm going to cut this post short and move stations.  People, if you're eating a tuna sandwich and there's lots of chairs available, please do us all a favor...don't sit near, well, anyone.  Doesn't matter if you like it, tuna stinks.  Blech.

Friday, January 15, 2010

new project!

of course as soon as I'm leaving, a new kit comes in! this is for quilts for I have 2 weeks to scheme about how to quilt this one.

my books

yup, I have 60+ hours of travel time coming up...I'm going in prepared.

WHIM number 1

all these are tshirts from high school that I'm going to make into a tshirt quilt...any inspirational patterns?

kitty battles...

he wouldn't get into his carrier, so into the laundry basket it was. not a happy kitty.

Levi n Linus - Ready to Ship!

Phew, what a week!  I can't believe it's only the 15th day of this year and I've already gotten 2 baby quilts done and one to a point of "all I need is a few hours in front of the TV to finish this".  I'm so hoping to get all three done and shipped before I leave tomorrow morning...I wish it were socially acceptable to bring quilts to bind, to meetings that you're not presenting at anyways.  I'm pretty sure that's not a good idea though.  Sigh.

In any case, here's the picture I'm going to send with Levi's quilt, to Hannah:

I'm going to get boxes for both quilts (and the pink one, which isn't quite finished yet) so I can ship them out on the way to the airport tomorrow morning.

Here's Nick, modeling the I Spy quilt for me:

I spent my morning in a training seminar that didn't at all apply to me ( was for a whole other set of products, separate entirely from the ones I document), so my mind drifted just a tad:

I was daydreaming about the quilt I'm going to make for my mom to give away. I'm hoping to get this panel (or something similar) for the center, and use 9-square blocks to surround it.  I might do another small border around that, but maybe not.  I'm going to quilt around the outline of the bear (basically all the black lines in the picture, minus the eyes and nose, etc), then quilt along the seams of the blocks (I haven't decided if I'll do each and every square or just around the blocks themselves...I might even just do diagonal lines across the whole thing).  I'll put the binding on, but leave the last part (hand stitching it down) for her to do so she can own a part of it.  Then I'll send it to her (likely for Mothers' Day) with the idea that she needs to take it as a donation someplace...she was thinking about starting up a donation center at my dad's hospital (Seton in Austin), so maybe this can be the first donation to that.  I'll post details for that group if/when she starts it. 

In any case...I have 22.5 hours until I'm on the plane to New Zealand.  I'm mostly packed, but need to find books to's a LOOOOOONNNGGGG flight down there from here, so I'm not sure one (even a thick one like Cryptonomicon) will suffice.  Any suggestions? 

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

First Guild Meeting!

Tonight, I went to the monthly meeting for the Mothertown Guild, in Lancaster.  It was so much fun!  I learned to do English paper piecing:

Seems like it could be fun if I cut the pieces before a long road trip...not sure I can bring needles on a plane though, so I'm pretty sure I won't try this weekend. Actually...this makes it seem like I could bring needles but not scissors of any kind.  I'm not sure I want to bring sewing stuff to New Zealand, but maybe for the next trip. 

I had a lot of fun at Mothertown tonight.  Everyone was super nice, and they even invited me to their retreat!  I'm not sure if I'll be able to make it or not, but it would be nice to get away for a weekend...well, get away with other women for a change.  We'll see.

So some pictures of the latest projects:

Here's Alishia's quilt.  I was doing the numbers:

And figured out that, in order to make a twin-sized quilt it'd be best to add an inch of sashing between each block.  I was debating the darker fabric above, but I don't think I'll have enough.

Instead, here's the lighter fabric I's cream/tan roses (called "tea time" I think).

Here's the pre-hand-stitched fleece blanket.  With any luck, I'll have this and the I Spy quilt done by Thursday, in time to ship to SAPD on Friday.  

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Small Grumblings

So I played cards with a coworker at lunch today.  It was the second time I'd ever played, with the number of hands played still in the single digits.  Who could have guessed that I'd make a strategical error with numbers like that, huh?  (*rolling my eyes here*)  I always forget, the number one rule of Nerd Club is you do not screw up at Nerd Club.  (Number 2 rule YOU DO NOT SCREW UP AT NERD CLUB!!)  For those of you who don't know me personally, I'm a technical writer at a very very very (very) nerdy software company.  How nerdy?  We sponsor the Museum of Science.  That's how nerdy.  It's a great gig (for the most part), and I enjoy the work, but on occasion, the nerdiness gets to be a little much (which, if you know me personally, you're probably laughing at coming from me).  Some days, the word "algorithm" comes up a few too many times in casual conversation.  And when I say "casual conversation", I mean "what did you do this weekend, oh you had a date, how was it, I can plot the trajectory of this relationship" kind of casual conversation.  Yup, that's my life. 

What's great though, is that quilting (and sewing in general) gives me this sort of nerd release valve.  I won't pretend that I can do the geometric analysis of every block, but you know what?  There are doodles of triangles on my whiteboard at home...the one in my sewing room (incidentally, the one that fell and scared the bajeebers out of my poor kitty this weekend).  I'm finding that there is something so...healing...about putting on a movie I've seen a million times, warming up the space heater, and sitting down to do some good for someone I'll never meet. 

In college, I used to do a lot of volunteer work.  I used to identify with people, and I used to feel connected to the world.  Somewhere in my senior year, I lost that...maybe it was a bad breakup, maybe it was school kicking my butt, maybe it was something else entirely.  I don't know.  What I do know though, is that for nearly 4 years now, I've felt a sort of emptiness that wasn't there before.  I've been to church and I've done some volunteering, but everything just seemed like a square peg. 

Somehow...maybe it's because of the link between my mom, quilting, and spirituality...
...maybe it's because I can send my love for other people forward to them, without the possibility of rejection or hurt in return...
...maybe it's because of something much deeper that I haven't figured out yet...
...somehow, I've managed to start finding peace again, through quilting.  Maybe that's why I'm so hooked on buying fabric and's not the shopping that gets to me, it's the "seeing beyond" if you will...when I run my hand along a light blue flannel print, I can see a little boy wrapped up in it, standing outside in flashing lights.  It's a horrible situation for him, but in a strange way I feel like that flannel connects me to him, and makes it so I can give him comfort, without ever even meeting him.  Is that strange? 

I've been obsessively finding quilting bloggers over the past few days.  I think I've added something like 60 or so blogs to my Google Reader thingy.  So far, I haven't found anyone in a similar situation to me (mid-20s, single, etc), but I don't feel alone.  So many quilters out there (mostly women) are such good people, and I love that! 

Friends at work laugh that I've become so "domesticated" lately (see my cooking blog for proof!) but don't at all see the draw to this...even my boyfriend (Nick) just nods and smiles most of the time (except when he knows he needs to be excited about something I've just finished...he's good like that lol).  I dunno...I guess it's nice to find a community of people who enjoy doing things for the love of doing them.  There aren't very many ulterior motives to quilting, really.  It's possibly the most innocent hobby ever (except maybe in the old days, when they used it to communicate...which I think is so badass). 

I dunno.  I'm rambling. 

Oh!  One more thing, then I'll knock it off, promise!  I just got my first ever request for a commissioned quilt!  My friend saw the I Spy quilt I made (I showed him pictures on the decoy blog lol) and just went nuts over it.  He has a toddler son who's just getting to the age that he understands stuff like that, so he's SUPER excited to have something to "light up his face" as he put it.  :-)  I think I'll designate the pink blanket to be the donation match for Arman's I Spy. 

Monday, January 11, 2010

Picture Update

Finally, some pictures!  

The weekend's spoils:

This took less time than you'd think to iron and fold.  It's also bigger than it looks in the picture...this heap filled my hamper to the top and then some.  :-)

Now, the I Spy quilt for SAPD c/o Project Linus.

Starting the I Spy quilt:

More I Spy:

More I Spy:
The kitty spies (don't worry, I'll be washing this before I send it in...incidentally, if anyone has recommendations for what laundry detergent works best on pet allergens, I'm all ears):
The front done:

 I am TOTALLY in love with the blue stuff I used between's a batik from the remnants bin.  God, I love the remnants bin!  :-D

With batting and backing:

 The backing is a blue flannel with tugboats and lighthouses.  <3

Also for SAPD, here's the fleece rag blanket:

 The top three rows are sewn together.  The bottom 5 aren't yet. The pink edging is the same stuff I used for my mom's quilt.  :-)

After a 3-day binge of daily Joann's visits (three different stores I might add), my closet looks like this:

And, last but certainly not least, I got these strips in the mail today!  They're different Paddington Bear patterns.  This is about to be one of my favorite projects.  My mom is moving to Austin soon, after living in San Antonio for nearly a decade.  That might not sound like a lot of time to some of you, but we're a military family...this is the first place she's been for more than 4 years since before I was born.  Austin is only a couple of hours away from San Antonio, but it's far enough that she'll be making a whole new life for herself there (with my dad, of course).  My mom, as you can imagine from the description of this blog, is a truly amazing woman...her current concern with moving (aside from getting stuff to point B from point A) is finding a place to devote her time and compassion.  (That's right, she's really that amazing!)  So to help her out a little, I'm going to make a smallish quilt from these strips and give it to her to donate to someplace, so she can use it as a sort of ice-breaker. I haven't decided on a design yet, so I'm open to suggestions.  :-)  Also, in case you're curious, she reads my other "decoy" blog, so I can post this here and she won't know.  :-) 

So that's the wrap up for now. I'm taking a break from doing the binding on the I Spy quilt. I'm about halfway done...this is only the second binding I've done by hand (I did my mom's all by machine...epic fail), and already I feel way more comfortable about it.  I'm hoping I can get it done tonight so I can have something to show tomorrow night (maybe) at my first ever Quilters' Guild meeting...I won't be able to be a member, since membership is limited to 50 and this particular one is already full, but I really want to go make friends. 

Oh!  Speaking of friends, I totally gave advice at Joann's today!  This girl was asking about batting, and she was making her first quilt.  I was so excited for her (she was about my age), I wanted to hug her and tell her to come be my friend lol. 

And on that note, I'm off to finish this binding.  Night all!

Oh Darn...

So I was hoping that my last trip to Joann's (yesterday, Saturday, pick) would be my last for a while, but it turns out I don't have a needle big enough to tie quilts.  Oh darn.  Guess I'll have to swing by on my way home from work (it is SO bad that there's one half a mile from my office) and get a needle set...and maybe see what else is on the 50% off red tag rack...and see if they have more of the batting I like...

Good thing stakeholder bonuses will be out soon.  :-P

My goals for tonight are to get the I Spy quilt in hand-stitching shape (i.e., do all the machine binding so I can bring it up to Nick's and do the hand part there) and to get the latest idea going.  Oh right, the latest idea.  So I got 48x6-1/2" blocks of fleece that say "baby" all over them, in's kind of a goofy print, but it was ebay and it was cheap.  Anyways, what I'm gonna do with those is make a sort of mock-rag quilt.  I'll stitch the blocks together, cut the raw edges, and bind the outer edges with the same pink material that I used to bind my mom's quilt. 

Slight digression here.  I like that pieces of my mom's quilt have made it into every quilt I've made so far (minus the plaid rag quilt I made for Nick and me).  I have SO much left over from her quilt, it's hard to imagine a time when I won't have anything left, but it's kind of a fun little personal Easter egg to throw into each one.  The I Spy quilt will have the same binding as Levi's quilt (the dark blue cotton material).  I'll try to remember my camera tonight so I can post pictures later. 

I got a lot of red fat quarters this weekend, and once Valentine's Day passes, I'll be sure to stock up on reds on sale...I'm really looking forward to doing more string quilts for HeartStrings. 

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Perfect Timing!

I checked my mail today, and lo and behold, I had not one but two packages!  The first one was 48 blocks of fleece in baby colors.  Cool.  The second one though was my 100 I Spy squares!  And perfectly timed, too!  Today, I'm going to take a break from doing Alishia's quilt and work on a quilt for the SAPD (San Antonio) via Project Linus.  A friend of mine in SA notified the world that SAPD is desperately low on comfort quilts (they have 10 left) and really needs some ASAP.  I'm going to throw together an I Spy quilt today, and see if I can make another one (both 36x45ish, in case anyone's curious) sometime this week.  If you're reading this and are interested in donating something pretty immediately, they need everything from baby to full-sized.  Instead of sending donations to Project Linus, please ask for the address of my friend (I won't post it here, and I'll ask her first before giving it to anyone I don't know directly) so she can help expedite the donation.  They'll alert Project Linus that they've received a donation c/o PL, for tracking purposes.  The I Spy quilt will be the one I'll donate in Levi's name.  Pictures to follow!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

coming together

the first few blocks of alishia's quilt. seeing it come together like this makes it so much prettier than the doodles i'd sketched out lol. string quilts may be my new favorite kinds...they take some time, but they're pretty robust as far as room for error.

a few more blocks done

and a kitty to count them for me :)

Friday, January 8, 2010

the general state of my sewing room

a few blocks down, all strips cut, how I met your mother playing, dinner cooling, kitty wandering, and off the screen a glass of wine slowly draining. it's a great Friday night.

my first string block!

I am so hooked! this is your future, alishia! :)

finally, levi's quilt

here's levi's quilt, with alishia's in the background...still very much in pieces lol

binge shopping

So last night, on my way to Nick's, I stopped into Joann's.  Again.  This week they're having 50% off their red tag clearance stuff, and I've found a few fun fabrics there already, so my excuse was that I'd just see what they had and only get stuff red-tagged for $5 or less (so, $2.50/yd or less).  What a glorious mistake that was!  This whole bag (about 7 1/2 yards of cut fabric, 5 remnants, and 20(!) fat quarters) cost me around $22.  $22!!  Remnants are 70% off this week, and the fat quarters were 50 cents a piece!  Insane!  One of the remnants, which was almost a yard of fabric, cost me 30 cents.  Needless to say, I'll probably be peeking into the Natick shop on my way home from work today, just in case.  :-)

My criteria for picking out fabrics right now are this:
  • First and foremost, I'm looking for baby fabrics.  I have a lot of blues, so I'm focusing on pinks at the moment. I also need whites, since a lot of my blues are darker, so the whites will offset them in a kinda mod way. 
  • Next, I'm looking for flannels.  In particular, youth/kid/infant flannels.  
  • Finally, I'm looking for anything that catches my eye as being a fun pattern, a pretty color, or a neat texture.  That only seems vague, but I actually have surprisingly discerning tastes. 
Right now, I'm mostly working on building up a stash.  I figure it's best to buy while stuff is super cheap, then find a project to use the stuff later.  If I wait until I have a project in mind, it'll be way more expensive.  Most of these fabrics I actually have a vague idea of what I want to do with them anyways.  Really.  :-) 

Thursday, January 7, 2010

How CUTE is this???

I Spy Quilt Squares

I stumbled on this when I was trying to compare prices for a lot of 4" pre-cut squares of adorable is this woman's idea??  She fussy-cuts 100 squares of fabric (also available in 5.5" and 2.5") around images on novelty fabrics...the idea is that you'd use those squares to make a kids' quilt so you can play "I Spy" with them! 

Needless to say, this is going to be inspiration for at least one donation quilt.  :-) 

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Serenity Now!

I finished up Levi's quilt last to come as soon as I get my phone back (grumble grumble).  I'm pretty happy with it...the binding turned out way nicer than I expected (given my lack of hand-stitching experience), and the whole thing is really legs got noticeably colder every time I stood up without it covering me! 

I still haven't quite dreamed up what I'm going to do for my Linus quilt yet.  I have a bunch of flannel left over from Levi's quilt, and I have a few other little-boy-esque patterns (Curious George, blue Pooh) that I could throw in there.  If anyone has any suggestions for block patterns to try, I'm all ears. 

I think I decided last night that I will always hand-stitch the bindings.  Machine stitching is obviously a lot quicker, but hand-stitching really gave me a chance to sort of "bond" with the quilt...I feel like I left more love on it by doing it the hard way.  It seems almost insincere if a quilt takes you less than a couple of days at least to make it.

I've been dreaming of fabric a lot.  I know that sounds weird, but when the last thing I do at night is close my sewing room door (Grisgris (my cat) LOVES the chair in there, not to mention the piles of fabric that look just like a kitty bed to him), it's hard not to still have pretty colors in strange shapes on my mind.  And since there's obviously a lot of planning that goes into more intricate quilts, I find myself daydreaming and doodling a lot more lately as well. 

In any case, I should get back to work...just wanted to jot down some thoughts. 

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

stringing along the madness

I don't know how other people do it, but I'm using sticky notes to keep my blocks straight. this is half as many blocks as I'll need in the end. baby steps.

Monday, January 4, 2010

delayed gratification

One of the things I really like about quilting is that, no matter how you slice it, it's all about delayed gratification.  You might be able to throw together a decent quilt in just a few hours, but you still have to wait for the drier to go off before you can even use the fabric.  :0)  Right now, I'm starting a quilt for my friend Alishia, who just bought her first home.  In the spirit of firsts, this quilt will be my first "string quilt".  Its companion donation quilt will be made for Heartstrings Quilt Project.  The companion quilt will likely be a baby blanket (or at least a smaller one than I'm making for Alishia).  The reason I'm starting on Alishia's quilt instead of working on the quilt for Linus (or finishing the one for Levi) is because the fabrics I picked up for the Linus quilt are in the drier.  Levi's quilt just has hand stitching left to do, so I'm saving that for tomorrow, when I'm at Nick's (my boyfriend) where my sewing machine and cutting stuff aren't. 

Alishia's quilt is going to be called something like "Teal and Sandstone"...or something.  Basically, she loves teal.  So half the strings are teal.  The other half are roughly the color of the stone at Zion, which is a place she frequents.  Alishia and I met rock climbing a few years ago in Utah, and though I live on the east coast now, she is still one of the best friends I've ever had.  A couple of years ago, my other best friend, Jimmy, and I went to visit her in Salt Lake, and we all drove down to Zion for easily the best weekend of my life.  We went rock climbing, hiking, much physical activity, Jimmy and I literally couldn't walk the Monday after.  It was one of those vacations that I almost don't even want to try to repeat because it was just so perfect on its own.  Jimmy's in Maryland now though, and Alishia is in Utah and I miss them both like heck. 

In any case, I digress.  The quilt is for Alishia because she just bought her first house.  I'm aiming for it to be a couch quilt, but am making it big enough to fit a full or queen sized bed.  The fill (string) part should fit a full sized bed across, and the borders should extend it to make it fit a queen sized bed. 

On that note, back to work then off to bed. 

Sunday, January 3, 2010

levi n linus

doing the lettering...decided after 2 letters that I'm gonna leave it at the first name. I need more practice, but not on this :)

this is officially Levi's quilt :)

I decided to use the same fabric as I used on my mom's quilt, as the border. I like the little bit of darker sort of defines the edge very definatively.

my first mitered edge! I'm doing the binding by hand.

Friday, January 1, 2010

one for levi, one for linus

the beginnings of the quilt I'm making for my friend hannah, who's having a baby boy in march. I'm going to make a similar one for project linus

mom taught me this method of putting the top together

I got these templates at joann. theyr 5 inches high.

turns out the batting is slightly too small, so I'm going to have to pick some up tomorrow to finish this. if you look closely, you can see the outlines of the letters, as well as a couple of stars.

If I were a Trophy Wife...

...I think what I'd do is start a little business.  I'd make quilts and sell them, and the cost paid would include the cost of materials for two identical quilts (and a little extra for my time and other expenses), and I'd send one to the buyer and one to a charity.  I wonder if I could start a non-profit like that someday...maybe first I should learn to do bindings, huh?  :-)  Back to the sewing room.  Happy 2010!