Wednesday, February 29, 2012

WIP Wednesday: Two Quilts and a Block

Yikes! Wednesday again? That was fast. 

Here's the quilt top in Kate Spain's Terrain fabrics that I'm working on for a baby girl. The pattern is almost done, so get pumped! I'm excited to start adding in the sashing.

The Storm at Sea is waiting patiently by.

I'm ignored.

I miss working on my Rose Star blocks.

I miss you so!

I was curious about how much time it took to complete various parts of the quilt-making process, so I downloaded a Desktop Task Timer app to help me be more aware. So far I'm really loving it. It's nice to know where the hours are going.

I hope everyone's WIPs are coming along! I'm linking up with Freshly Pieced, Sew Much Ado, Someday Crafts, and Rae Gun Ramblings.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Terrain Heaven!

I'm so glad I didn't squirrel away these fabrics for some elusive rainy day. I love them! This Terrain line by Kate Spain just makes me smile. They're so full of life and excitement. 

I was able to cut and piece all of the little components that go into the quilt top for this one today. So far the pattern is coming along well, and I'm getting to take some pictures that should make the directions all the clearer.

I stumbled into Talkin' Tuesdays last night, and it was so much fun! I'll definitely be there next Tuesday. Mark your calendar!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Piecing a Baby Quilt with Kate Spain's Terrain

My quilt deadlines changed, so I'm starting another baby quilt today. I'm using this one to make the final run through on the pattern. Get pumped!

I love these Terrain fabrics by Kate Spain. I threw in a couple of other pinks as well. This is a girl's quilt after all!

I plan to finish this one this week, so stay tuned.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Empire Quilt Finished

This quilt is ready to go off as a gift to a little boy tomorrow! On Monday I had a pile of fabric in my sewing room. Today there's an heirloom. I love it!

I almost tried a new binding technique, but I chickened out at the last minute. I considered trying Rachel Hauser's zigzag binding stitch. (She had me at fast and easy.) I made a test swatch, but I decided against it for this quilt. I felt like stitching in the ditch was a better fit with the clean lines and sparse quality of this quilt.

I ended up combining aspects of both Sharon Schamber's and Rachel Hauser's binding techniques.

1) I cut my fabric into 2.5" strips: Rachel
2) Assembled the binding with Elmer's glue, sewing, and starch: Sharon
3) I sewed the binding to the front of the quilt with a 5/16" seam: I split the difference between Sharon's 1/4" recommendation and Rachel's 3/8" preference. If I had done a 3/8" seam, the binding would not have covered the stitch line on the back. 
4) I glued and heat set the binding to the back of the quilt: Sharon
5) I stitched in the ditch on the front: Sharon
6) I hand stitched the mitered corners in place on the front and back of the quilt: Sharon

If I had nothing but time and fingers of steel, I would have hand sewn the binding to the back like I did the last two baby quilts. I love how the binding seems to be magically attached when you sew it to the back by hand. 

I prefer the slightly larger binding created by the 5/16" seam on the front. There were a few places where I had trouble getting the binding to catch on the back as I was stitching in the ditch. I went back and sewed over the gaps again to get them to catch. When I bind like this again, I'll give myself some wiggle room and cut my fabric strips 2 5/8" wide. Otherwise, sewing a 1/4" seam with binding made from 2.5"strips would be fine. 

I forgot to measure the bound quilt before I put it in the wash, but I used the same Poly-Fil Cotton Classic Batting for them as I did with the other two baby quilts that I finished recently. It's 100% unbleached organic cotton with a 1/4" loft. We're probably looking at the same 3.6% to 4.8% shrinkage. This one came out of the dryer measuring 49"x36."

I'm linking up with Crazy Mom QuiltsAmy Lou Who, Sew Happy GeekCanoe Ridge CreationsShwin & Shwin, and JAQS Studio to see all of the other finishes. Happy Crafting this weekend!


{Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge Creations

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Empire Quilt is Ready to Bind

Quilted, squared, and ready to bind!

I need to hand this quilt off tomorrow, so I'm glad I'm nearly done. I did some chevron quilting and squared it up this morning. It looked so sparse afterwards, though, that I went back and quilted another row between each of the chevrons and stitched in the ditch along the vertical sashing.

The back has a little piecing for purely practical reasons. My measuring tape was missing when I first pieced the front column of blocks. When I finally unearthed the measuring tape in my sewing room, I realized I could remove a whole row of blocks from the column, and it would still be long enough. 

When I went to grab fabric from my stash for the back, I realized it was too short. I incorporated the row that I removed from the front with some extra Kona white, and the back came together perfectly. I love that it's all straight from the stash. 

I've been playing seasons of Sex in the City in the background while working on this quilt, so I'm calling it the Empire quilt.

It's back to the sewing room for me! I'm ready to get the binding on and get it in the washing machine. I'm linking up with Somewhat Simple and Between U & Me.

Somewhat Simple

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

WIP Wednesday: Three Quilts and Block

Wednesday again! Here's what's happening in my sewing room (aka The Clubhouse).

1) Baby Boy Quilt:

I used fabric from the stash for this one, so I could get started without having to run out to the store. I fought my instinct to save things forever and broke up a couple of Pezzy Prints charm packs. Now I'm in love with this color combination: Sky, Indigo, Aqua, Dusty Blue, and Gray. The background is Kona White.

2) Rose Star Blocks:

I. Love. Putting. These. Together. I should be able to get back to working on them soon. Well, March 10th at the latest. There's a lot going on between now and then. Check out Clare's tutorial at selfsewn if you want to make some of these English paper pieced blocks. It's a fun skill to have in your arsenal, and it makes for a great take-along project.

3) Storm at Sea Queen Sized Quilt:

WIP Wednesday definitely keeps me from forgetting about this quilt. It's got some problems, though, and they'll be tedious to work out. I definitely want to finish piecing the top and get this bad boy assembled. (It's one of my goals for 2012.) Realistically, it will be April before I can get to it, though.

4) Baby Girl Quilt:

Oops. I don't think this counts. I know I'll be using some Kate Spain Terrain fabrics. I can't decide if I just want to go ahead and pull from my charm pack or if I want to cut yardage. It will likely end up being some of both. Either way, expect to see this one come together quickly. I need to have it finished and washed by Sunday night.

I can't wait to see everyone's WIPs today! I'm linking up with Freshly Pieced, Sew Much Ado, and Someday Crafts.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Happy Mardi Gras!

I'd ask how much king cake is too much, but then Mardi Gras is all about indulging, so I won't. Mr. Pins and I are both Louisiana natives, so we're flying our purple, green, and gold flag high today.

In hindsight, it would have been so cute if I'd had a Mardi Gras project complete for today. I'll just keep that in mind for next year. As it is, I've been busy working on a baby quilt for a little boy. I bravely broke into a charm pack of Pezzy Prints yesterday. There's no saving for a special project around here. Every project is special, right? Yesterday afternoon, I had this:

Now I've got this! I opted to turn the prints when I was cutting the fabric, because I wanted more movement in the quilt top.

The colors look great! I really love how this one is coming along.

It's back to sewing for me! Throw on your Mardi Gras beads and get crafting!

Creative Itch

Tuesday To Do FEatured

Monday, February 20, 2012

Pack Attack

I'm have a hard time busting apart the pre-cuts. For some reason I like them all neatly bundled with their color cousins. It feels so safe.

We can't wait to cover you in lint someday.

I don't like this tendency, though. When I was a kid, I mostly squirreled away all of my stickers instead of sticking them to things six year-old girls should be affixing stickers to: artwork, sticker books, the back of your hand. (I made an exception for the bed frame. Sorry Mom and Dad.) It's sad to find your sticker stash twenty years later knowing it would have made you feel so much happier to use them when you were six. I'm determined my pre-cuts won't suffer the same fate. Queue the charm pack attack!

We're excited to cover you in lint today!

Oooh, that looks so nice all broken apart. I have to make a baby quilt for, um, Saturday, so I should get busy. It's for a boy, so I don't think I want to keep these colors in there.

Pink, brown, and black saved for later.

This is really fun, but I don't know anything about the parents or the nursery. This might be too loud for some folks. 

Why am I suddenly craving Skittles?

I'm crazy about this color combo. I think I've got something to work with!

Getting' quilty with it.

I hope your crafty week is off to a good start. If you've got the day off for Presidents' Day, I know you're already on a roll!

I'm linking up with Canoe Ridge Creations, Sew Happy Geek, Polly Want a Crafter, and Keeping it Simple.

{Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge Creations