Christmas is coming……

Just a few days to go and all my Christmas sewing is done. Yay!!

The 2 Christmas pillows turned out gorgeous.

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I found this cool sparkly trim to use as the ornament strings.

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I recently won a fabric bundle from Timeless Treasures. I must think of something wonderful to use it in . The good news is I have a full year to do so.

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It’s so darling with those cupcakes, candies, and lollipops.

After Christmas, the piecing of the Simply Style charm square quilt top will begin. But, you never know what kind of delicious fabric goodness can come and derail those plans.

Merry Christmas to all! I hope your holiday is filled with family, fun, and quilty goodness.

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Virtual Quilting Bee – reimagined

Today I finished the quilt top for the Virtual Quilting Bee by Amy Smart. I reimagined the final design layout because I didn’t want to go with sashed squares. Here is what I decided on after completing 15 of the 16 blocks.

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It was going to be uneven and wonderful in a non-symmetrical way. I also decided to add a thick sashing between the different areas of blocks to bring out the background purple in the blocks themselves. To get this type of top done I needed to do some measuring as well as a little eyeballing. I tried something along the lines of ‘measure twice, cut once.’ I didn’t have any mis-cuts so it must have worked out.

And the end result is……

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I like how it turned out a little even yet wonky at the same time.
Here are some of the interior blocks:

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I have the perfect backing fabric by Me & My Sister Designs that is going to be a wonderful accompaniment for this quilt.

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Bloom, Bloom, Pow complete!

I finished quilting the Bloom, Bloom, Pow quilt-a-long quilt designed by Lee at Freshly Pieced.

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I used some cool blues as the flowers and a blue/purple blender on the border. I removed my first border quilting (see previous ‘Oops’ post) and continued the interior quilting out. I used a variegated blue thread in the border rather than the neutral that was used on the interior quilt top. I love how it all turned out.

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I’ve also been working on some Christmas projects and my brain doesn’t stop thinking of new ones that I just have to make for holiday gift giving. My brain sometimes works faster than the actual time available to complete all these projects. However, all of the big quilts are complete. I’ve got work gifts to make, another stroller size quilt for dolls, and other random small gifts. This is my favorite time of year.
I also recently bought some gifts for me. New Fabric!!!

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Both are Robert Kaufman. The bundle on the left is Somerset Spring and the bundle on the right is Grandeur Jewel. They are both shiny and sparkly as well as dripping with beautiful vibrant colors.

I must come up with something wonderful to make with them. I can’t wait to see what my mind comes up with for those gorgeous fabrics.

Stroller Symphony

This week contained many projects finished, started, worked on, and designed. It started on Sunday with the design and start of the Stroller Symphony stroller blanket. I went with a large log cabin design and decided to border and back it with some Minkee fabric.
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I’d never worked with the Minkee fabric before so I did a little research and found a lot of tips to get the best out of the experience:
1. Cut with a rotary cutter to decrease shedding.
2. Pin and pin and pin and pin and pin and pin to avoid slipping while sewing.
3. Sew with the Minkee down so the feed dogs can grab it and pull it evenly.
4. If you must iron then put a towel over it so that it won’t melt (it is polyester and will melt with direct heat).
5. Keep a lint roller handy and do a clean sweep of all your implements after sewing the Minkee to de-fuzz your equipment and work area.
I pinned in a cross-hatch pattern so that it was pinned in both directions and would not move.

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After using all the tips, I didn’t have any trouble with the fabric at all. The blanket turned out so cute.

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I definitely won’t be wary of using that fabric in other projects. It is so soft and cuddly. It will be perfect for the musical family that gets this blanket at this weekend’s shower.

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Oops, let’s do that again…

Today, I was working on quilting the Bloom, Bloom, Pow quilt, a quilt-a-long at Freshly Pieced that occurred earlier in the year. I quilted it just as Lee suggested for her sample.

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It turned out great. I decided not to go into the border and quilt that in a different manner. Well, this is what happens when you intensely dislike border quilting that you just completed.

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And, this is the reward you get after completing that task, a task of which took 3 times longer to do than the actual quilting itself.

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I will say that the coldness of that bowl really helped the pain in my fingers after removing all that thread. 🙂

Now I have decided that I will continue the main quilting into the border and see how that goes. I hope to give my seam ripper a well-deserved break.

Until next time…..

Sugar Block Club….so far

The Sugar Block Club by Amy Gibson has one more block left for this year. Back in January, I chose a red, white, and black theme. As the months went by the color play got more focused and more dramatic. I love how these blocks are coming out and they are working so well together.

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I may decide to scrap the first ones, the ones with more orange-red and less white fabric, and re-do them with my updated palette. I’ll decide that after they are all complete. This is block #10:

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I just love the whole thing and Amy’s instructions are so clear and easy to follow. I’ve learned quite a bit from this BOM and from her 2012 Craftsy Block of the Month class. I love that quilt top, too. I have yet to quilt it. It’s for me and on the back burner from my other projects. It does hang on a quilt rack behind where I sit and sew and I get to stare at it whenever I want.

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This Christmas quilt, that I recently completed, is also an Amy Gibson pattern from Craftsy:

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This one was so simple and created such dramatic results. I took it in to work this week and everyone just loved it.

Coming up, a Bloom, Bloom, Pow finish is just around the corner. It’s the last quilt I have to finish before Christmas.

Inspiration, Design, and Paper Piecing

I’m blaming my new project on a design idea in my head, a fabric-looking trip to Hobby Lobby, and my Electric Quilt software program. So, I had this idea for a baby quilt – Pittsburgh Steeler’s inspired but not using Steeler’s fabric. Something a little more subtle than that. I had this Chevron baby quilt in mind and that Hobby Lobby trip resulted on the perfect color palette.

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I opened my Electric Quilt software program and started designing what I had in mind. I needed to incorporate the red and blue but only in small bits. Therefore, I added another small chevron line on a few portions of the quilt top.

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Here is where I state that my cutting precision leaves a lot to be desired and I was able to print foundation paper piecing templates. At this point, let’s go back a few hours to my visit to Quiet Play via the Freshly Pieced WIP Wednesday post. Katie was a guest blogger for Lee that day. She made a statement in her post that anything can be paper-pieced. So, with my lack of precision cutting and Electric Quilt rotary instructions showing some weird angle, like 43 degrees or something like that, I decided to go with Paper-piecing. So far, so good. I like how it’s turning out.

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