Saturday, August 31, 2013

Another (almost) finish--signature wedding quilt

You may remember that I've been working on a signature quilt commissioned by a friend for her friend's wedding album.  The idea is that instead of guests signing a guest book, they will sign individual blocks on the quilt.  

Well, it's finished!  Yay!  Actually it's only the top that is finished.  I serged the edges of the top so that it won't ravel and will look neater on the table.  The bride chose the colors and the client made all the other decisions, but because we are friends, I advised her on several points.  I also built a couple of designs in EQ7 so she could envision the finished quilt.  She was really grateful for the EQ7 pictures.

One reason that I wanted to write this post is that I made a huge oops! while working on the top today.  When I started this morning all I had left was to press the two halves, stitch one seam to form the barn raising design and add the borders.

But when you can see the end, you should look twice before taking a step.  (I've been reading a book with lots of proverbs, sorry.)  So I pressed and stitched, then realized that I'd stitched the wrong seam.  Aww, come's three steps from the iron to the machine: how'd I do that?  barn raising design  

Rip, rip, rip! and back to the machine, this time to sew the correct end of the quilt.  What'd I tell you: look twice before taking a step!
Happy Ripping Quilting,

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Friday, August 30, 2013

Friday Finish! Robust Bunting

Robust Bunting, how's that for a name?  It's robust because it is flexible and can accommodate paper, fabric, and small trinkets.

I made pockets out of heavy, clear plastic and strung them on a narrow bias tape.  Now all I have to do is put a little decorative something into each pocket.  When the party's done, or I get tired of the decorations, I can slip them out and slide in new ones.

 Good idea, huh?  I really like it and can't wait until the girls come for a visit so they can see it.  I'm thinking birthday parties--pretty letters in a favorite color to spell the name of the birthday kiddo. 

Oh, how about fall leaves at Thanksgiving? Or, maybe tree ornaments at Christmas, hearts for Valentine's, and so on.  With or without a background.  Yes, I'm liking this.  The ideas are so fun!  But you probably have a few of your own, so I'll be still. 

Creating this bunting is quite easy: just use clear plastic sheeting for regular fabric.  Once your pieces are cut out, stitch the outside seams to create a pocket.  Sew the pieces wrong sides together. You don't need to turn the bunting right side out.  The sheeting will work for any shape or size.  After all the bunting pockets are paired up and stitched, they are sewn to a long strip of bias tape.

When making your pattern, just remember to leave an extra half inch on the top of the back piece.  This is so you can sew it to the bias tape without having the front piece getting in the way.  I actually cut two pieces of paper the exact shape and size.  Then I added the extra strip to the top of one piece to make the back piece.

Put up on the wall or hang outside and fill with your favorite paper or fabric decorations.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Pin It Wednesday #32

Craft ideas

Origami ideas

Porch ideas
Although I do have a "front, porch" board that you are welcome to visit, the two that follow are not my boards.  The boards have so many beautiful photos that I simply can't pin them all.

I'll leave you with a few more porch pins to enjoy.  Our temps have dropped a few degrees so we were able to enjoy our porch one or two evenings.  They are rising again, of course, the summer isn't over yet, but one cool snap leads to another and before we know it, we're building a fire on the patio.  Ahh, relief!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Progress and Progress!

Fleur de Lis Quilts Milestone: 550 POSTS

I left you on Saturday with a post about the wedding signature quilt that was in all manner of stages--blocks, rows, and half sewn.

Sunday I managed to get into the studio for a few minutes and before I knew what was happening, I had this:  

Oh yeah! An almost finished quilt top.  The blocks and rows are all together with the exception of one center seam.  That's because I need to press the two halves and it will be much easier to do if the they are separate.  Once the two are pressed, I can stitch them together and press the one seam.

Of course I'll still need to add the borders and serge the edges, but those won't take much time either.

Another progress I pulled off this weekend was a delivery.  My sister Lee commissioned a red and white chevron for her new college graduate, Mandy.

We went to a party for Mandy on Saturday night and delivered the quilt at the same time.

Mandy was supposed to be surprised, but her mom was forced to tell her when she talked about getting rid of her ULL red and white now that she's graduated.  Then, when I posted the finish about the quilt on Facebook, Lee commented, Mandy saw and questions followed.  Poor darling, I think she's pleased anyway.  She's really excited about the chevron pattern and her grandma's fabrics!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sunday Quilt Inspiration: Fine Art

The museum at University of Louisiana at Lafayette (ULL) had a special Auguste Rodin exhibit several years ago while I was a student there.  As a student I was able to see the exhibit a couple of times and although the sculptures were the same each time I visited, I found new, interesting details and learned just a bit more about sculpture, art and, sure, quilting.

Of course, I wasn't an avid quilter at the time, nor did I realize that I would eventually use some of that art knowledge in my quilting.  I was just a mom and student and lover of great art.  I had to see this exhibit (and several others) while I had the opportunity.

It's amazing how Rodin was able to depict soft beauty in some sculptures and hardness in others.  Look closely at the difference in the skin texture of his works: the sculptures with a "soft" scene also have characters with smooth, soft skin, while those depicting a "hard" scene have rough, bumpy skin. 

Check out the fabric in the next one, entitled The Abduction of Persephone by Bernini.  It looks so sheer, with a soft, smooth hand, but remember that this fabric is actually marble.   

It's a small jump to a few paintings that include flowing, folded fabrics.

And so, a few draped, folded, piled up quilts.

Have a great week of quilting,

What a sew day!

I love those days when I walk into the studio with lots of time to sew!  You know, there's a project in the works and you make progress.  Those are my favorite, unless it's a day when I've cleaned and everything looks good.  Nooo, the progressive days are the best ones!

So, check out my progressive day--

This is what I started with at about 9 a.m. Saturday morning.  About half the blocks are complete and some are stitched into rows.

To fit all the rows I have to double them up, so the rows that are squeezed together in the middle are actually piled on top of each other with just enough showing so that I can count and keep track of what's going on.  The rows on the top and bottom are ready to stitch together.  

I like to make lots of blocks and put them up so I can arrange them, then when I run out of wall space I sew rows together.  This method helps me to focus on one chore at a time without switching between blocks and rows. (I'm too ADHD for lots of switching back and forth.)

You may also be able to see the yellow dots on one of the rows; those help me insure that I keep the blocks in order while I'm sewing.  It's just cheap sticky dots that I write numbers on.  (Look, I sew backwards, or lefty.)

Now we're getting somewhere!  The picture above is of the top half of the quilt top.  All the rows are sewn together.  This how I left it yesterday afternoon.  

Space is at a premium! In this photo I have some blocks that need to be stitched into rows (on the bottom), some rows that need to be stitched together (under the top half), and part of the complete top all on the same design board.  Notice that there are now two sets of sticky dots.  I want the rows in the right order, too.

If all goes well I'll finish the top this afternoon.  The goal right now is to keep all the yellow dots in order and in the right place.  Since I'm cheap and lazy frugal, I have only two sets numbered, which means I have to reuse the dots.  They are wanting to jump off the fabric and get lost in the clutter other WIP projects.  I'm having to fiddle with them to keep them in place.  Oh, I'll fiddle, but I won't take a moment to write numbers on another set....let's call that frugal "in the zone"!

What are you fiddling with today?

Friday, August 23, 2013

Linky Party of Studio Spaces!

Woo Hoo!

I discovered a linky party this evening while reading a few of the blogs that I try to follow.  The party is actually a "studio showcase" of 138 sewing spaces at Ellison Lane Quilts.  

I looked at a couple of spaces and read the posts, then decided that I'd link up, also.  It's a good thing I didn't delay, because I barely made it under the wire!  #138....that's me!  But better late than never, right?  

Maybe, except that late means there won't be as many visitors coming by, but all that really matters is that YOU did!  Thank you and I hope you enjoy my little bloggy space.  

Rather than find me there, go here to see the post with a few more photos of my studio.  This post is rather old and I have made a few changes, but you'll get the general idea of what my little piece of heaven on earth looks like.  

Now don't forget to go to Ellison Lane Quilts and check out the other studios....they are inspirational!
Happy Quilting,