VB Inventory Quilt – Part One

I was recently cleaning out my closet and realized the vast quantity of Vera Bradley bags that I have. There is a VB store nearby that would have a twice yearly Sidewalk Sale with incredible prices and I took advantage of that sale regularly. I wanted to hold on to them but put them to a different use. That’s how my VB Inventory Quilt was born.

Step one – Deconstruction:

I pulled all the purses, wallets, and wristlets that I wasn’t actively using out of the closet, removed any hard bottoms, and threw them in the washer.You know what happens when you put a bunch of purses in the washer? A tangled up pile of purses. That was fun and a little time-consuming to undo all the straps but the end result was worth it.

I kept note of each bag as I was deconstructing them with a seam ripper. Turns out I pulled 33 total pieces out of the closet. Now, I was never a pattern collector. I was an equal opportunity pattern buyer. If I liked it that day and the price was right then I bought it. That’s going to lead to a very bright, happy, scrappy quilt.I used my evening TV watching time to do the seam-ripping. It was super satisfying to tear those seams open and see the inside construction of the bags. I’ve always liked seeing how things are put together.

I separated the pieces into quilted pieces and lining pieces. My plan is to sew all the quilted ones together and then sew all the lining pieces together (add batting and quilt those) then put them all together into a big quilt. I also pulled out the straps and segregated them as well. Not sure how I’ll use those yet but I have some ideas brewing. I’m leaning toward a faux fur or something like that for the back.

Step Two – Block Plan & Cutting

Remember those hard bottom pieces I pulled out of the bags before washing? They inspired the block design for this quilt. They just fit together so nicely.It’s a simple design with a big impact. The bags are apart and the design is set. It’s time to cut the pieces. I can’t wait to see if it transfers to reality as well as I think it will. The first cuts look very promising.Sewing this together is going to be a blast!

Until next time……Happy Sewing!

Random Roundup #22

I’ve been working on some quick little projects so I have a lot of little things to share.

Midibag:

I was preparing for a minor surgery and had quite a bit of nervous energy so I made a Midibag the day before which worked great for holding my clothes, phone, and wallet. I also got a few compliments from the nursing staff.I combined 3 mini charm packs – one Modern Background Ink and two Just a Speck by Jen Kingwell. The bag turned out so cute and was the perfect size! You iron the squares to the supplied interfacing and then fold and sew it together. The pattern contains interfacing for 2 bags. I need to decide on mini charms for the second bag. It’s a great little bag for art and craft fairs or the beach.

With the remaining squares, I was able to make this cute little pouch which is now with my sister-in-law. It worked beautifully for transporting a selection of Peppa Pig figures to my nephew.

Microwave Bowl Holders:

My brother’s family requested some of these bowl holders last year when they were here and I finally got around to making them as a housewarming gift. I use a great tutorial from Happy Hour Stitches.

Fabric Swap Box:

My guild is setting up a fabric birthday box swap and I needed a box to use to turn in my bought or ‘curated from stash’ fabric. The accessory box from The Container Store can hold 15 to 18 fat quarters depending on how you fold them. So I created a fabric name label to fit that box. I used my favorite fabrics for this one.The letters are from the Just My Type – lowercase pattern by Kristy of Quiet Play. I used headbands as the straps and sewed them into the binding and it worked beautifully.

Summer Sampler 2019:

I have been wanting to join in on the Summer Sampler that is hosted by Lee at Freshly Pieced, Katie at SwimBikeQuilt, and Faith of FreshLemonsQuilts but I was always preoccupied. This year the theme is Piecing Bootcamp and I love learning new techniques or improving my current techniques.There are two different finishing options but I just adore this curved layout. I’m planning on rainbowing this thing up and chose to use the Ombré Confetti Dots that I’ve been hoarding. I’m combining that with Tula Pink Fairy Dust and a grey Essex linen and it’s going to be epic!This Sampler Series starts tomorrow (May 20) with a block being released once a week. Here’s the link to sign up through Katie’s blog – Summer Sampler.

Stash Enhancement:

Alison Glass Holiday arrived and I cannot wait to get started on the quilt I designed last year. These fabrics will just pop!

I also received Alison Glass Sunprints Light. No plan for those but I just had to have them to fill in my low volumes.Lots more to share but I will pause here to take a breath and get some more sewing done!

Until next time- happy sewing!

Trinket Progess

We’re at the end of week 2 of the Trinket Sewalong sponsored by Alison Glass Designs. I have all 8 weeks of blocks done and photographed and ready to post on the assigned day. I’ve actually also got my quilt top complete but won’t post that one quite yet. Here are the first few blocks.I booted up my computer and opened up my EQ8 software so that I could take the vision in my head and get it down on paper somehow. Christa Watson jokingly told me at QuiltCon that booting up the computer was the first step to really utilizing the program to its potential. I don’t tend to turn on my computer much since the IPad is just so much easier. I’m so happy I did as I love this design.My trinkets are one light and one dark of each pattern. The designs right next to each other just didn’t look right so I knew I needed to add the center sashing in the four patch blocks.The whole design turned out better than I had it in my head and I am super pleased with the result. Full reveal will be later but I did have time to start working on the backing which will be another Alison Glass fabric improv pieced backing. It’s going to be super colorful and fun!I’m having a blast looking at all the blocks under the #trinketsal hashtag on Instagram. There is so much fabulous creativity and diversity in the blocks. The finished quilts will all be wonderful.

Now to finish up that backing so I can quilt this thing.

Happy Sewing!

Trinket Time

I have been furiously working on the Alison Glass Trinket Sewalong. It doesn’t officially start until March 10th but I want to be prepared to post daily once it does. The blocks are foundation paper pieced, which is my favorite and they go together really quickly.I’m using all Alison Glass fabric which I have plenty of leftover from the Classic Meets Modern Finale quilt I finished in January. I did have to supplement some lighter prints and some dark charcoal that I’m planning to use for sashing. I was so happy to find exactly what I needed when I went shopping during QuiltCon in Nashville last weekend.I’m sewing ahead of schedule and currently have 68 of my 80 blocks done! The minimum to make is 40 blocks but I have a plan to do one as light/dark and then one as dark/light. Here are a few that I have completed so far which shows my plan in action.I’m thinking of doing 20 four-patch blocks and sashing in the charcoal prints and then arranging them however I decide on that day. The quilt top has to be done and posted (on the AG site) by May 20th in order to qualify for the grand prize.

I’ll start really thinking about the layout once all the blocks are done. I’m really excited for this one and can’t wait to start posting them on Instagram (@crystollyn).

Here’s the 68 I already have completed. It’s such a pretty stack.I cannot wait to get back to working on this project. So fun! Who else is joining in and sewing along?

Random Roundup #21

There is a lot of random sewing happening in my world.

Lori’s Epic Cat Quilt:

I was able to complete my cat quilt! Weather hasn’t been good so I need to wait for good sun to take a decent picture but I will leave you with this preview featuring quilt inspector #2 (aka Jasper).

Make Modern Beehive Gallery:

My Teal Fizz quilt top is a part of the Beehive Quilts Gallery article in Make Modern Magazine issue 26. Make Modern is a digital Australian quilt magazine with lots of great patterns and articles. I’m honored to have been asked to be part of this gallery. You can pick up a download of this issue here.

Blues Quilt Challenge:

There is a quilt show coming up locally that will feature blue mini quilts. The challenge is 24×24, predominately blue, 3 layers, stitched together. So, it doesn’t have to be fabric just 3 layers and blue. Information on the Blues Challenge can be found here. Mine will be fabric and I started with a light blue improv pieced heart and a pile of dark blue scraps. I can’t wait to see where this takes me.

Stash Enhancement:

I took part in a recent drop on Massdrop for the Michael Miller Fairy Frost fabric line. I was so happy when it arrived. It’s one of my favorite lines and I hadn’t seen all the colors before and they are just spectacular and so sparkly!Current drops include EQ8, La Pass templates for English Paper Piecing, Creative Grid Rulers, and a Rowenta iron. It works like a co-op where as more people commit to buy the price lowers and you can commit to only purchasing if the price reaches its lowest state. I use it a few times a year and have been happy with everything.

Perfect HST Sampler BOM:

I’m participating in the Perfect HST Block of the Month Sampler being held by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced. She created some foundation paper piecing templates to aid in achieving perfect half-square triangles. This BOM uses those templates. I’m using this fabric pull of mostly Cotton + Steel Basics with the grey hearts and arrows as the main background fabric.The first block was the Ridgeline Star which used 4 of the darker colors. There are leftover triangle blocks to use for later in the BOM, for some bonus projects, or for whatever I choose. I’m happy with the points on this one so hopefully that will continue through the year as more blocks get created.

New [to me) Toys:

I just picked up this Brother PQ1500SL from a quilt friend that had upgraded. I was just barely leaning into the market for one and could not pass it up. I’m happy so far but I’ve only pieced on it (but I’ve threaded it 3 times 🙂). I think we’re becoming friends. I did not have as much trouble today as I did yesterday. It always takes a little while to get used to a new machine but I’m excited to learn new things and improve my skills!

Anyone headed to QuiltCon next month? It would be great to meet some fellow Quilters and bind over quilting things! Happy sewing!

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Classic Meets Modern Finale

This Block-of-the-month took a lot of planning on my part due to some health issues I was dealing with in 2018. I needed to finish up as many blocks as possible before chemically induced fatigue set in. I got a little behind early on but had a break mid-year where I was able to gain a bit of energy (and my sewing space) back. Once that happened I was able to push through and finish up this quilt top way ahead of deadline. I put together the backing this last weekend and finished this baby up and it’s a beauty!I admit to taking a couple of shortcuts….I did not make the filler blocks of snowballs and flying geese. Instead, I used some focal fabric to substitute for those fillers and one of them actually has flying geese in it so I call that a win.This quilt was made using Alison Glass designed fabric only. It’s rich and saturated with color and dimension and movement. I used a conglomeration of her many different fabric lines and they all work so well together.

The backing was made using the scraps from the individual blocks and then pieced together improv style. I like it just as much as the front which really makes this quilt a reversible throw.I quilted it using a variegated rust from the Aurifil Tula Pink collection and I really like how it looks on these fabrics. The colors are so varied that it was difficult to find a thread color that looked good on all of them but this one fit the bill.The quilting is a V shape echoed from each corner. The binding is a scrappy mix of colors that are the same print. Honestly, I was a little unsure once the binding was made about this choice but it worked out really well as a calming frame to this piece.This BOM was held by Kelly from My Quilt Infatuation. The theme was classic quilt blocks using Modern fabrics and interpretations. The layout is also a very modern touch. These blocks can be reused for many different projects. I already have a plan formulated for that X-plus Block pattern.My goal this year is to finish up a bunch of projects that are already in the works. I need to get a ton of quilt tops basted, backed, and bound. It can be done. I have the faith!

Skating Through

I jumped on a daily special sale this week and picked up Vintage Christmas by Lori Holt and the patterns in it are fabulous! There are so many things that I need to make – yes I said need. The first one I chose to do was the Ice Skate Block for a pillow for my step-sister. She skated when we were kids and I have fond memories of hanging out at the ice rink while she practiced.I added the mitten blocks, which is another pattern in that book. One great thing about this book is that there are instructions for both 12″ and 6″ blocks so you can really choose what you want to do to make your design perfect for you.

I couldn’t decide how big I wanted this pillow to be so I played around with placement for a while and ended up adding another Ice Skate to the other side of the mittens. Well, it finally ended up at 14×36. I didn’t have that size form on hand so plan on ordering one tomorrow. I googled ‘pillow forms 30 inch long’ to find out the what sizes were available and that size was the closest to what I had already pieced. I added some borders to bring it up to fit the form. I quilted it in a cross-hatch pattern as I didn’t feel like it needed anything more than that.The backing is something I had on hand from Christmas’ past and worked perfectly with the colors on the skates.I enclosed it with a side zipper and cannot wait to get the form to put inside and make it all fluffy!

Now, the question is…should I keep this for next Christmas or send it as a ‘Just Because’ gift? It’s super cute and I hope she’ll love it!