Wednesday, November 30, 2016

November Sewing

November seems to have disappeared! Is anyone else surprised that tomorrow is December?  

Even though I don't know where the month went, I have been doing some sewing and I've actually FINISHED a couple projects! The Lincoln Modern Quilt Guild had a bag sew along at a sew day earlier in the month where we could make a wine holder bag, the Sew Together Bag or the Bionic Gear Bag. 

I made the Bionic Gear Bag. Thankfully, my friend Kristie had already made one and she helped me get started! It wasn't too bad to make, even though installing zippers is not my favorite. I just had to take it one step at a time. 

I love this bag! It holds A LOT of sewing supplies. I tested it out over Thanksgiving break at mom's and it kept all my stuff together. It works great in the car, too!

I made a nice stack of Christmas potholders for my Aunt's Christmas barn. I had my assembly line down this year and made 20! 

Here's a little peek at a project I made for my cousin, Kathy. I love how my circle improv turned out! I worked on quilting this over Thanksgiving and I can't wait to take some photos and share the finished product! 

While we were all together at mom's on Thanksgiving, my sister Becky and I had a discussion about the frayed edge napkins we made as little girls in 4-H. We both felt that the experience back in the day was stressful because Grandma V was helping us get these made for the fair and she was a perfectionist! We ripped and redid our stitches so many times, it's amazing there was any fabric left to sew! My sister says this napkin project is the reason she doesn't sew anymore ha! As it turns out, mom made some in 4-H, too, and she just happened to have all of our napkins tucked away in her tablecloth drawer. We thought a mother daughter photo was in order :)

So that was my November, sewing wise. I would love to see what you're working on!

Monday, November 7, 2016

Sunlit Autumn Shawl

My Sunlit Autumn Shawl turned out so pretty! Now if the weather would cool off so I could wear it! I had some fun taking shawl progress pictures with all the colorful leaves. For that last pic though, the day was windy and the park was busy, so I had several spectators watching me crawl through the weeds. Just slightly awkward haha!

I really enjoyed knitting this project, if you're looking for a fun knit, check it out!

Pattern: Sunlit Autumn Shawl by my friend, Naomi, at Sew Knit Create
Yarn: Patons Kroy Socks Fx in Celestial Colors

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

WIP Wednesday

Fall has arrived, even though it still feels a bit like summer. The linden tree in the back yard is dropping its leaves in heaps and the squirrels swim in and out of them, chasing each other with acorns in their teeth. The massive flock of grackles (a plague?) has returned to feast on the acorns as well. The cacophony they create is amazing! I love this colorful change of season. 

I began knitting this Sunlit Autumn Shawl over the weekend. The pattern is the first published by my friend, Naomi! She's done a great job with this pattern, I'm really enjoying knitting it so far! It's easy enough that I can remember the pattern for a section without looking but then the lace section is just difficult enough to keep me paying attention! Head on over to  Naomi's website, Sew Knit Create, for some inspiration, or join us in the knit along on Ravelry! 

Friday, October 14, 2016

We Are The Music Makers

This quilted wall hanging was created for two different challenges, the Lincoln Quilters Guild's "Celebrate Community" wall hanging challenge and Lincoln Modern Quilt Guild's "Make A Statement" challenge.

The Lincoln Quilters Guild held their quilt show last weekend. I don't belong to that guild but the wall hanging challenge was free and open to anyone and my good friend Kristie invited me to play along. As I thought about the LMQG's make a statement challenge, I started to get the idea that I could combine the two challenges into one project. For my community, I chose to depict the music community at North Star High School where I work as an accompanist. This quilt is inspired by the show choir, guitar class and jazz band that all happen at the same time. Specifically, 5th period! 

 One Sunday morning, as I brushed my teeth before heading to church, I got the idea to have a piano and guitar nestled together. I quickly sketched out the idea and headed to church, where I pondered the idea for the rest of the morning. That afternoon, I improvised the piano and then gradually added the rest over the next week. The guitar started out as a full guitar but in an attempt to make things fit in a 24" square, I cut the guitar in half. The starburst section is jazz or a tambourine or sound ripples escaping. Use your imagination!  For the layout, I was inspired by the look of retro travel posters. To make it fit with the "Make A Statement" challenge, I added the words as a border, which also gives it a poster feeling, I think.

I had a lot of fun with the quilting! I did both machine and hand quilting. Since the piece is small, I really stitched a lot. Working small is good sometimes, I was not overwhelmed by the quilting!

My mom and I attended the quilt show last Saturday and boy was I surprised to see that I received second place in the wall hanging challenge! How fun is that?! Isn't the ribbon super cute? It has Nebraska's capitol building in the middle. I guess winning was a big deal because someone stopped me while I was grocery shopping a couple days later and asked if I was the one who made the music makers quilt! Wow, that was a first! 

I had so much fun creating this wall hanging and I'm so happy with the colors and design. I'm excited to take it to our next LMQG meeting! 

Quilt details:
20" x 24 3/4"
Improv design by me 
Machine and Hand Quilted 

Friday, September 30, 2016

Exhibit Quilt

Finished Exhibit Quilt! Isn't it fun? It's been almost a year since I received these blocks, so I'm happy to finally have it finished.

This quilt is the result of a block swap that was hosted by a local shop, Crafthouse, using the Exhibit pattern by Eye Candy Quilts.  

The fabrics for each block were chosen by Crafthouse. All of the blocks in my quilt, with the exception of one, were made by other quilters. I love the fact that so many hands were involved in the creation of this quilt! There are so many fun fabrics in here, mummies and bunnies, butterflies and kitties! There's a huge variety of fabrics, many of them I probably wouldn't have chosen for myself, but I'm really enjoying the whimsy! 

This is the one block I got back of the blocks I sewed. I'd love to know who made the others! As I sewed the blocks together, I could tell that there were varying levels of sewing expertise involved. Some blocks were perfectly sewn, with the fabrics fussy cut so each piece matched exactly. Other blocks had uneven seam allowances and wonky edges. But you know what? I didn't care that it was a little challenging to make these blocks work together because everyone who made these blocks tried their best and hopefully enjoyed the process, just like I did! We all have to start somewhere and I love that my quilt has both perfection and imperfection. That's life. And probably par for the course when participating in a swap. 
You know what else happens in my life sometimes? Laziness. The pattern called for sashing between the blocks but I was lazy and decided to sew them together as is. I really like the diagonal pattern that emerged though, which prompted me to quilt on the diagonal. 

For the back, I used Anna Maria Horner's free Feather Bed Pattern along with this feather fabric I found. I think it was meant to be how the colors just happened to work together, since I made the feather blocks way before I found the feather fabric!

Quilt details: 
47" x 60"
Blocks made by many AWESOME people
Machine quilted by me

Friday, September 2, 2016

Strings Quilt

I finished a quilt! It's about time. This one is just fun. When I organized my scrap boxes awhile back, I realized that I had a lot of blue and pink scraps that were already cut into strips. I gathered them up and started sewing them together. My only vision was to have long vertical strips. 

I didn't square anything up as I sewed and eventually, things were becoming pretty wobbly and wonky. I wanted it to be that way but I did have to take in some seams to avoid a bulging center. 

Originally, I had machine quilted this but I ended up hating it. I ripped out the machine quilting and hand quilted it with perle cotton thread instead. I love how the quilt looks and feels now! Finished size is 55" x 66". What a fun scrap busting project!