Thursday, February 28, 2013

I Spy...A Donation Quilt

I wanted to share with you a little I Spy quilt I finished this week.  This quilt will be one of many donated by my local Irish Patchwork Society branch to the pediatric ward in the local hospital.  This is a simple charm quilt made from charms I received in Jennifer's I Spy charm swap, alternated with Kona White charms.  


As I don't know if this will go home with a little girl or boy, I tried to stay gender neutral in my colors and choice of prints.  You'll find a mix of woodland creatures, pigs, bugs, fish, dogs, sheep, campers, birds, turtles, cars and robots...a little something for everyone.



The border is a happy green filled with woodland critters like hedgies, foxes and a squirrel or two.


The back is a dotty white on a blue background mixed with Wellington boots, both from the shop (here and here).  It's quilted in a grid pattern 1/2 inch on either side of each seam, creating a grid pattern.  Thankfully there were no massive wrinkles on this back!



Our quilts will be handed over to the hospital in May.  I hope it keeps a little gal/fella warm during their hospital stay and lifts their spirits if they're feeling down.


Quilt DetailsName - I Spy
Made For - Donation to Galway University Hospital
Fabric - All 100% cotton charm squares with Kona White background, Kona Papaya binding, Dot to Dot backing with Jack & Jenny Wellies
Thread - Pieced and quilted with Aurifil 50 wt in 2600.
Batting - 100% cotton Simply Cotton
Size - Approximately 35x35 inches
Quilting - 1/2 inch on either side of the seams, creating a grid pattern
Pattern - made it up as I went along



Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Nothing Could Make Me Happier

than seeing this little lady enjoying the quilt I made for her.


Let me please introduce you to my first (absolutely gorgeous) niece, Nieve.  She was born just over a week ago in Boston.  When she arrived home from the hospital, Chaos was there waiting for her.  I'm sure her parents (my brother and SIL) are starting to truly understand the name by this point.  Anyway, she's been cuddling up with it since!

She's been thinking some deep thoughts under that quilt of hers.  We have a future Nobel prize winner I am sure.


I've made lots of quilts and given them to lots of people, but this quilt as a gift for this little girl has been extra special for me.  Here's hoping she gets lots and lots of use out of it.

Monday, February 25, 2013

A whole new cutting adventure

....has started in the FSQ house hold.  I am finally the proud new owner of a Sizzix Big Shot.  After trimming and squaring a gazillion HSTs in the past few days, I thought this little baby might save me a bit of agro.


When I started looking into buying something, I did a bit of research on the Go Baby vs. the Sizzix.  This just seemed to suit my needs a bit more.  Thank you so very much, fellow blog buddies, who gave me the pros and cons of your Go Baby or Sizzix machines.  You guys were incredibly helpful. 

When I started searching for an Irish vendor (you know - to help our economy AND save on shipping...), I found it to be incredibly difficult to buy both the machines and the dies in one place.  That shop doesn't appear to exist in Ireland.  With Laura Jane's help, I was finally able to buy one in Ireland on sale (woo hoo!!), but without dies (boo!!). 


In the end I made a purchase of these buddies from the UK:
4 1/2 inch finished HST
Now that I'm posting the photo of the die here, I see that this still has sharp edges...not like the blunted ones below.  I wonder if that means I have to trim these blocks.  I so so so hope not.
3 inch finished HST

A classic for the baby quilt.

DP circles
DP outer edges (what are these called?!?!)

I really love DP blocks, but hate making up a pattern then cutting the curved lines.  Maybe this will really get me going.  Anyway, I'll let you know what I like (or don't like) as this moves along.  Fingers crossed it will lead to a few pretty quilts!







  

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Liberty Star Top

I have been humming and hawing, shopping, collecting coordinating prints and auditioning backgrounds for ages now. Isn't it time I create something with these Liberty prints of mine?  How about a giant star quilt top, for example...



Again, the lighting is awful.  The evenings are getting brighter, but I still struggle to get a photo.  I should also say last night when I was taking this image, the neighbor's dog came over to investigate the top while it was flapping in the breeze.  He was not at all impressed and let me know barking and growling at it.  It's good he's cute.

Thank you all who suggested background colors the other day.  Rhonda suggested matching my background to one specific flowers in this print...I tried my best, Miss R!  It's Kona Bahama Blue.  I hope you like it as much as I do!  You can see the colors a bit better here.  The top really is prettier than it appears in the photo above....


Yet another quilt top to add to the pile of UFOs.  I'm on a roll piecing, but have little urge to quilt something this large.  That day will come.  For now I'll stay happy piecing away.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Pinwheels Quilted...Maybe.

I took a bit of time this past weekend to quilt my little pinwheel top.  In the end, I decided to go with many different colors of thread for quilting, all in a diagonal across the quilt top.  I like the overall effect, giving you something more to look at than just straight lines.  I thought before I trimmed it, I would take a photo or two to show you guys.


It was so windy when I was out there taking the photo that it was nearly impossible to get the whole top AND have it in focus!  So I just laid it all down to take a still photo.  How did I not see my foot in there while I was framing the shot!?!?  Goodness knows.  Anyway, you can see the various yellow, pink, aqua and green threads used for quilting a bit better here.



The back is Circa 52.  Here you can see the quilting a bit more...


All in all, I was quite pleased with myself.  I had this little cutie all quilted and ready to trim.  You see, I wanted a bit of hand work to do this weekend.

But wait...

What's this?...

How did I not see this before?...

NNNNNOOOOO!!!!



Total stinker pot.  Stinker stinker stinker pot.  There's a fold quilted into the back of the quilt.  Its about 3 inches long and quite deep on the one side.  I can get the tip of my finder in there!  (Sorry about the awful orange photos...we're back inside trying to get warm again.)  


Is there any possible way to unpick these few lines of quilting and smooth it out?  Do you guys have any experience here?  Or will I have to unpick a full half of the quilt to smooth it and re-quilt it?  Any suggestions are totally welcome.  Worst case is that I have to unpick half to re-quilt it.  Still gives me something to do by hand I guess :(


Monday, February 18, 2013

What's In A Name?

I have very exciting news!  There will be a new fuzzy member to the Fluffy Sheep household this spring.  We are bringing home a little golden retriever pup the first weekend in April.  I am so excited I am bouncing out of my seat just writing this post!


Our little girl is 8 days old today...just starting to open her eyes.  I am not sure which one she is in the cuddly cuteness above, snuggling with her mama Phoenix   We will meet the litter and get to choose her toward the end of March.  You better believe I will show you guys those photos!  

What does this have to do with quilting, you ask?  Well, I'd like to give her a quilty name.  I thought you guys might have a few ideas to share. It needs to be a two syllable name, but beyond that I am open.  The past few days I've been thinking about calling her Kona.  What do you think?  Any other suggestions?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hey Girl...

I haven't had a laugh like this in a long time!  I'm sure you have run into these Ryan Gosling "Hey Girl..." sayings before, but I just had a look through Pinterest for sewing/quilting related Hey Girl giggles.  Want to see a few of my favorites?

He totally gets Nicky!
He wants you to sew and chat, Emily and Mary!  Dinner is waiting!

Hadley won't need that little house in the back garden any longer!

Clearly he gets Sarah .

I'm pretty sure this one is for me.  Mr. Fluffy has closed his eyes more than once.
Trudi, take him shopping!

Oh, Susan, what a life you will have together.

Here is my question for you.  What would Ryan say to you?  I've already asked Mr. Fluffy and he says "Hey Girl...Those four points match perfectly!".  Oh, my heart flutters.









Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Pezzy HST Heaven

Did you see the last edition of Fat Quarterly?  It's chock-o-block with pre-cut patterns, which suits my recent fixation with charm packs and layer cakes perfectly!   Or is it dangerously?  Either way, I can't get enough.  Inside, I found a pattern by Svetlana for a baby quilt that made my heart flutter:

Photo from S.O.T.A.K Handmade

I pulled out my Pezzy charm pack and got to stitching!


168 HSTs later, I am up to my eyeballs in little blocks that need to be squared and trimmed.  Still, I'm happy as can be!


I am a bit focused on baby quilts as of late as A) I need to find a way at craft shows to demonstrate to new quilters what they can make with a charm pack and B) I need to make a few to sell in the shop.  I think this one, though, will also be used to teach me how to hand quilt while again, acting as a demo for the perle cotton in the shop.  I have high hopes for this little cutie!


Monday, February 11, 2013

All ready to go!

In the last 2012 Finish Along, hosted by Rhonda, I was lucky enough to win the give away from Clover and Violet including a bag pattern and a charm pack to use with the pattern.  It was PERFECT for me as my winning project was my Mouthy Stitches bag.  I love things that come full circle.  

I chose the Brooklyn Bag pattern (in PDF)...


And a tasty charm pack of Joel Dewberry Notting Hill prints...


They have both safely arrived in Galway now, so I am ready to get stitching.  I just need a quiet Saturday to get down to business.  Thank you so very much, Rhonda and Jennie, for such a great win.  I am absolutely thrilled!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Quiet Inspiration

I have been sewing, but I will tell you all about that later.  I am just in the mood for a bit of quiet inspiration.  My brain is obsessed with charm packs and layer cakes, so I pulled these out for a little flip-through.  We'll see what bubbles to the top.



This could only be better if I had a pint of Ben & Jerry's.  Yum.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Modern Stitching Bee: February Blocks

This month in the Modern Stitching Bee the lovely Miss Susan asked for churn dash blocks.  Perfect!  They're fun to make and will be a gorgeous quilt.  Susan wanted aqua, blue or purple blocks.  I don't understand why, but these colors are not always abundant in my stash.  I always love them.  Still, I found pretty prints to make one aqua block...


and one blue...


I found a purple too, but that eager beaver Sarah already made a block using it!  Overachiever :)  Susan, they'll be in the post this weekend. I hope you like them!



Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Pinwheel Quilt Top

Pinwheels are clearly a classic  block for a reason.  It is incredible how easily they come together, how they can show off a print and how much impact they can have.


Do you remember a little while ago I won eight 10x10 inch squares of fabric?  Well, I tossed in a ninth with a little background Kona and made a small quilt top.


This top is just under 1 meter square, making it really easy to use a single 1 meter x WOF for the back.  I have it layered  now using Pebbles in Pumpkin and am quilting it in straight, diagonal lines.


Sadly, though, I've run out of the thread I was using to quilt.  Just my luck!  If I can find a bit more in town I will quickly finish off this cutie.  It will eventually be for sale in the shop or at our next craft fair.  


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Electronica's Quilt Top

She's a bit vibrant; a bit in-your-face with its color and randomness.  She might not be to everyone's taste.  Still, I really dig her.  Let me show you Electronica's finished quilt top!  


This quilt top has been slow coming together, starting with fabric being shipped off to my Sew Bee Blissful ladies and a few test blocks in Feb 2012.  Unfortunately, the blocks were coming back to me just as I was trying to get the shop organized for opening.  I just could not pay attention to them and get them into a top.


But finally here they are, thanks to the Finish Along.  Each block is 14x14 inches square, making this a relatively large top.  It's going to be a great couch quilt.  


I have a bunch of siggy blocks and a few other full sized 14x14 inch blocks to go onto the back.  I just have to get that pieced and start quilting!  


Monday, February 4, 2013

And we call it Lazarus

Never have I been so happy to have my post returned to me.  Arriving home from work, what did I find waiting for me but this:


That's right!  My Mouthy Stitches tote that was sent off to its new home in Australia (back in October) has arrived back at my house.  I do not really understand why as the address was correct.  I am just happy to have it back.  This time it will be covered in tracking numbers so I can watch it on its journey.


I did have a replacement tote on my finish along list...guess I can check that off now.  Woo hoo!



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