Monday, January 9, 2017

2017 FAL Q1: Goals

Alright! On to the second part of my plan to tackle my unfinished projects this year! 

There is a wonderful and encouraging link up called Finish A Long that is hosted by multiple international bloggers. The year is divided into quarters, at the beginning of each quarter I will write a post listing my goals, then at the end of the quarter, I will post my finishes! There is also a week of tutorials leading up to the finish linky, and I'm excited about that too!

I have ambitious goals for this first quarter, especially considering that the first quarter of the year is when I work my 'day job'. But hey, if I don't make the goals, I'll never make progress on any of it, right?

So, on to the projects:

As seen before, I'll be finishing this Rainbow Baby Quilt. Right now it is in the flimsy (finished top) stage.

WhatsNextMa: Rainbow Baby Quilt
I have this great Summer Solstice Quilt flimsy to finish as well. 

Summer Solstice Quilt
Next up is my Southwest Saturday Sampler Quilt. It needs one more pieced border, then finished.

Southwest Saturday Sampler
My Positive Symmetry Pillow will be a free pattern/tutorial here on the blog, and the beginning of a series of mini charm patterns too!

WhatsNextMa: Positive Symmetry Pillow
I purchased a kit from Connecting Threads last year of the Sparkle Plenty pattern in Sedona Sunrise fabric, what can I say, Southwest themes make me smile! I've only barely started stitching the hsts together, so this quilt has a long way to go to be finished.


Another pillow to finish, a Hunter's Star that I made as a sample for a workshop that I taught last year (and just booked another one in April, yeah!)

Hunter's Star Pillow
A quilt made from leftovers is always a bonus! This is a Hst baby quilt. 

WhatsNextMa: Hst Value Baby Quilt
 Once again I find myself with an unfinished Christmas gift in January...really? I've already made good progress on this Hidden Stars quilt this week, hopefully I'll get it done soon!

Hidden Stars Log Cabin Quilt
Another project that was originally a sample for the workshop, my Scrappy Hunter's Star quilt. I know the picture shows it in blocks, but it has made it to flimsy stage.

Scrappy Hunter's Star quilt
And one more Hunter's Star project, a Black and Bright Hunter's Star quilt. There are sixteen different brights in this quilt with the black background, and it is stunning! Right now they are all in block units, I need to get them up on the design wall to decide on color distribution, then make the top and finish it.

Bright Hunter's Star Quilt
That should be more than enough to keep me busy for three months, right? 

With these projects along with some new sewing that I will be doing, I should be pretty happy in the quilting room!

I look forward to reporting on my progress, and I thank you for stopping by!

Meredith







 
 

Saturday, January 7, 2017

One Monthly Goal: January

What a fun an encouraging place the online quilting world is! I enjoy my interactions with my local guild members, no question, but it has been a surprise to me how much I enjoy the digital interactions too!

I've almost finished a review of my unfinished quilting projects from 2016 and prior years (an accounting for another post!), and part of my plan to move forward on them is to participate in the One Monthly Goal linky hosted by Elm Street Quilts.

My goal for January is to finish up the Rainbow Baby Quilt.

Rainbow Baby Quilt

It is currently in the flimsy (finished top) stage, so I need to choose a backing, sandwich, quilt and bind it.

The making of this top was a great deal of fun. One of my 2016 accomplishments was to make my scraps available for use, so for this quilt, I pulled out my 5" square bin and started pulling bright and happy colors. I only used one square from each fabric, so there are 100 different fabrics in the top!

It is a simple 10 x 10 layout, and right now I plan to do strait line quilting...we'll see whether I stick with that or try a spiral or something organic. I do know there will be lots of it, because it is intended as a baby quilt, so I want it to be able to handle many washings.

Thanks for stopping by!

Meredith

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Finished Projects: Made in 2016

Hello, hello! Welcome to the third and final post on my quilting adventures in 2016!

This post is dedicated to the finishes...and may I just tell you, I am so surprised with how many projects I actually finished this year!?! Granted, many of them are small...but I'll take what I can get!

I started the year by finishing a Christmas gift...tell me I'm not the only one? It's a simple pillow cover from a charm pack with some strait line quilting on each side of the seams.

Winter Pillow cover

Next isn't technically my finish, but I had a part in it, and I'm so darn proud of how it turned out! This is a New York Beauty quilt, Florida Keys style! I contributed two blocks. I don't personally have a picture of the finished quilt...but it is finished, and will be up for raffle at our guild show in February 2017.

Paradise Quilters Raffle Quilt

My husband had a coworker expecting their first grandchild, and he asked me if I could whip up a little gift...of course I could!

Hot Air Balloon baby quilt

We have dark leather furniture in the living room, and wanted to brighten up the look...quilted pillow covers to the rescue! On the right is the contact print pillow from Amanda at Crazy Mom Quilts, the second on the left is my original design.

Pillow covers for living room

And then, my crowning glory of the year...my very first commission quilt! You can read more about it here...and later on I made a pillow cover to match it!


WhatsNextMa: Improv Neutral Baby Quilt

WhatsNextMa: Improv Neutral Pillow Cover

My youngest (17) has discovered sailing since we moved to the Keys, and he loves, loves, loves walking to the sailing center after school to sail for a couple hours before it is time to come home. I made him a pillow to celebrate his new found hobby.

Sailboat pillow

For some more tropical color and brightness around the house, I made a quick batik table runner from a charm pack or two.

Batik table runner

And for Christmas sewing, I made a quick ornament from the tutorial by Amy at Diary of a Quilter. Too adorable!

Itty Bitty Tree Ornament

And just to round out the year...I made a pillow as a Christmas gift...only I actually finished it before Christmas, lol! This is for my youngest again...he loves penguins too!

Penguin Pillow

All in all, far more finishes than I would have originally thought! Now that I've looked at what I've accomplished, I get to plan on how to get things done in 2017!

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it up Friday!

Thanks for stopping by,

Meredith


Works in Progress: More of 2016

Welcome back! I'm continuing to review what I accomplished over the past year in my quilting...it's more than I thought!

In this post I'll cover the projects that made it to the top/flimsy stage that were not scraps...eight in all! There are quite a few more projects that I am still working on, so I set the limit of it needed to at least be sewn into a top.

I started the year by taking a fun workshop with my local quilt guild called the sawtooth star...I've seen it by several other names on Pinterest. This is a fun method because you don't have to worry about losing points as you stitch things together!

Sawtooth Star

Later in the year, I actually led a workshop myself! I used this tutorial to teach my guild members how to make the Hunter's Star block, and this quilt and pillow were some of my samples.

Scrappy Hunter's Star

Hunter's Star Pillow

During the summer, I participated in the Summer Solstice Quilt-along with Melissa at Happy Quilting. I loved the pattern and the pace of the QAL, and the color choices of the other participants was so fantastic!

Summer Solstice QAL

I'm trying to venture out of my bubble a bit...and I made up my own pattern for a pillow! I'm calling it the Positive Symmetry Pillow, and I'll be writing up a tutorial for you to make your own and publishing it in January, wish me luck!

WhatsNextMa: Positive Symmetry Pillow

Throughout the entire year, I've been participating in a Saturday Sampler through what was my local quilt store when I lived in Albuquerque, New Mexico. (If you are driving through on I-40, be sure to stop by Busy Bee Quilts in Edgewood...they are fantastic!) I chose the Southwest colorway, because I'm a sucker for turquoise.

Southwest Saturday Sampler Quilt

And right at Christmastime I was introduced to the A Little Bit Shorter Tall Tree wall quilt pattern...so I started two with big plans to get them finished and off to the intended recipients...it's a good thing Christmas comes every year, lol!

Tall tree wall quilt #1

Tall tree wall quilt #2

And that's it for today! Not bad progress for a fairly new quilter, right?

Linking up to Busy Hands Quilts: Finished or Not Friday

Thanks for stopping by,

Meredith


Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Accomplishments: Review of 2016

Hello friends!

As part of moving into 2017, I wanted to make a record of what I had done in 2016...so here goes! Today is the scrappy edition!

Oh, did I ever have such a great time with scraps! I was initially inspired by Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict and her i may have a scrap problem posts. Now, I don't have tubs and tubs of scraps...I don't even have as much fabric as she has scraps...but I did have one little medium size tub that was full of scrunched up pieces that bothered me.

Keep in mind that I live in a house that is less than 1400 square feet right now, and although I have a room dedicated to sewing/crafting, it measures less than 10 x 10. So, my little box and I became friends...over several weeks I pulled out a few fabrics, pressed them, then cut them up into 5" squares, 2.5" strips and squares, strings (strips less than 2.5" wide) and crumbs (pieces less than 2.5" square.)

Bin of scrap fabrics

Wonderful! I had made progress...now instead of one medium size box of jumbled scraps, I had four shoe size boxes of scraps in various sizes. It was progress, but not as much progress as I wanted...so I started sewing...

First up was a value hst (half square triangle) lap quilt top from the warm/cool 5" squares...

Warm/Cool hst quilt
 
A bit later I started sewing together the 2.5" squares into two-patches, then four-patches, then eight-patches. I got really good at swirling the seams! I added a rectangle to each long side and then had this twin size top...
 
twin scrap quilt
 
Next in the scrappy sewing it was back to the 5" bin for a rainbow baby blanket...
 
Rainbow baby quilt
 
Then it was time for the crumbs! I'd never sewn with crumbs or strings before, it's addicting! This top is twin size...
 
crumb quilt
 
 
Back to the 2.5" bin...and I emptied it! This sixteen patch quilt is a generous lap size
 
sixteen patch scrap quilt
 
And the final scrappy project of of 2016 took me right back to the beginning...remember those hsts? I made many more than I used in the first quilt...enough for a baby quilt!
 
warm/cool hst baby quilt
 
Now, these are all still in the flimsy stage...I have planned some backing for some of them, purchased some for others...so I have plenty of work to do...but this is some fantastic progress for the year! I definitely understand why some quilters work almost exclusively with scraps!
 
And it all started because Sarah had such a great series of ideas on her blog about scraps! Thanks for stopping by!
 
Linking up to:
 
Happy Quilting,
 
Meredith

Welcoming 2017: Quilting Goals


Hello! Welcome to my little piece of the online quilting world!

Like many, the new year marks a good time for me to make plans for upcoming months and how I would like things to progress. In my mind, planning always involves lists - not a list; lists, plural. I am an unabashed continual list-writer! 

With that in mind, let's take a peek at what I'd like 2017 to look like...

Personal Quilting:
  • Learn to free motion quilt
Business Quilting:
  • Learn to use the longarm and frame
Teaching Quilting:
  • Schedule another workshop/class
Website/Blogging:
  • Build website and migrate blog
Pattern Writing:
  • Share original ideas

That's where I'll stop for now! Because I love writing lists, I can sometime's feel as if in writing the list I have actually accomplished something...the real goal for the year is to get my ideas off the page and out into the world! That's what the list above is about...breaking out and going for it!

Thank you for the encouragement to figure out and commit to some goals for the year to Yvonne @ Quilting Jetgirl, and her 2017 Planning Linky Party

Happy Quilting!

Meredith


Tuesday, July 19, 2016

A Finish: My First...lots of things!

I am so excited to share with you today!

I started quilting in the summer of 2014, so there are a lot of things in the quilting universe that are new to me...and I am so enjoying the opportunities that I have to learn and try new things!

The quilt that I finished this week had a lot of "firsts" for me...



This is the first time that I've tried improvisational piecing...I was gifted the book "Minimal Quiltmaking" by Gwen Marston, and what a marvelous book it is! I had the best time using her suggestions to explore making this quilt, and plan to make several more! I planned out the front of the quilt (above), then had the idea for the vertical design (below)...but once made, couldn't decide which I liked better...so the recipients get to decide which is the front and back!


This was the first time that I have tried spiral quilting...and what fun it was! I read through a couple of posts on Pinterest about how to do it...the key seems to be realizing that you will be stitching just two or three stitches at a time for the first ten or twelve spirals. As long as you remember to be patient, it comes out so stunning!



This was my first attempt at glue basting...oh my, I am hooked!!! I like to bind my quilts completely by machine, first stitching the binding to the front, then folding it around the edge to the back and stitching in the ditch from the front and (hopefully) catching the binding. Even with careful pinning it was a hit or miss process, and I would often have to repin and restitch several sections that I had missed.


Well, with glue basting...I didn't have to do that!!! The binding stayed right where it was glued, and my stitching looks marvelous on the edge!!! And take a look at those corners...all four of them look this good!!! I am so pleased with this technique!



And the first for this quilt that has me hopping up and down with excitement? This was my very first commission quilt!!!!!! I am so excited that I was actually paid to design and sew this quilt for a baby that is due soon! How wonderful is that?! After it was finished I washed it up to make it all crinkly and soft, then packaged it up and mailed it to the grandma-to-be. Just two short days later she received it, and she loves it!




Oh, and I couldn't resist playing with the scraps a bit...I made a card that coordinates with the quilt to gift with it, if grandma wants to. I think that I'll do this for more of my quilts that are intended as gifts...it was so quick and easy, and it looks great with the quilt!


So that was my big adventure for the week!

Thank you for stopping by,

Meredith

Linking up with:
Blossom Heart Quilts
Quilt Story
Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Crazy Mom Quilts