Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Work In Progress Wednesday

It is fair to say that if a quilter does not have a variety of works in progress, something is gravely wrong! If this statement is true, my life is ALL KINDS of perfect! I have so much and then some!

The cold grey days of Winter have prompted new projects left and right for me.  This week I have added to my rainbow New York Beauties.  This is block 0.  The free patterns for these blocks can be found by visiting Ulas Quiltseite.  If you are new to paper piecing or are looking for tips for paper piecing angles without pulling your hair out, please read How To Paper Piece Quilt Blocks.
New York Beauty Quilt Block


My methods are not what I consider to be tidy. I have a 'Sew and Throw' attitude!  It makes a massive mess but overall it seems to work and keeps things hopping!


My New York Beauties are Alison Glass Sun Prints for Andover and the background fabric is Robert Kaufman Essex Linen Metallic Fog.  All of my blocks are pieced using Aurifil 50 wt thread.

Another project I have started is The Quilter's Planner BOM.  I recently shared a great list of 2018 Block of the Months and Sew Alongs for you to join to add to your fun for 2018.

The Quilter's Planner BOM starts off with this beauty! It took all of my strength not to fussy cut the center but I managed to not only to put the perfect images away ( I had four chosen and a massive mess to prove it), I chose PINK!

The background fabric is my all time...hands down...no doubt about it favorite Modern Backgrounds by Zen Chic for Moda Fabrics 💗💗💗



My tip for this week is one I have shared previously.  It is possibly one of my all time favorites! Using a pattern tracing wheel for marking fabric. No fuss and fret about lines reappearing. No trying to find a marking pen or chalk that may or may not wash out. Simple, easy and perfect!

A post shared by Kim Niedzwiecki (@gogokim) on

I would love to know what you are working on this week! 

Friday, January 12, 2018

How To Paper Piece Quilt Blocks ( free pattern link and video)

One of the things I adore the most about New York Beauty blocks or any paper piecing block is the ability to not have complete focus. You can create beauty without worrying too much about perfection.

Paper piecing are the best when you want to sew but are afraid to make mistakes. Being a visual learner, I take the following steps to make less mistakes and end up enjoying the process so much more!

                                        

Choosing the right tools for paper piecing success is step number one! The pattern is part of the New York Beauty Pattern that are free from Ulas Quiltseite. There are 10 patterns. The one I am making is a modified number 5. I am opting not to add the extra piecing in the middle.

I use Aurifil 50wt thread for all of my piecing and paper piecing.  It is thin and strong. Perfect for flat blocks! The fabrics are Alison Glass and Robert Kaufman Essex Linen.  The combination is gorgeous!


After printing out your pattern, prefold the paper at the lines where you will be sewing. This will create a great visual for when you are doing the next steps.



With the right side of the pattern facing away from you, take the fabric for section 1 and face it right side up ( or the pretty side looking at you )

for the fabric that will be covering section 2 place it right side down on top of the first fabric. make sure these two are about 1/4 over the first fold.

Bad photo! Set your sewing machine to about a 1.5 stitch length.

Flip over and, making certain that the fabric is not bunched up under ( it happens and is not pretty), sew directly on the line between the 1 and the 2 & sew a couple of stitches before and after the end for good measure.



Here is a quick video for those of you who, like me, need that extra visual help!



With these steps, I am able to have perfect paper piecing even with angles!


After the paper piecing, the curved piecing is as simple as mark your center , add a pin and then...

Secure the sections with mini clips. I love the tiny ones for this job!


This will have to wait until this weekend to be finished but I am so happy with the colors!


If you have more questions on how to paper piece, please let me know! 

Monday, January 8, 2018

Creative Life Unscripted and Crocheted

Creativity is a way of life, not a hobby.

Creative outlets can be found in many ways.  I sew, write, sing, dance and will pick up new things here and there.  I have found my zen place to be in the focus of doing something...anything that has a start, ( hopefully) has an end and ,most importantly, makes me feel something!  Happiness, sadness, anger...something!

One of the parts about embracing creativity is that it can bring you peace when you need it the most.

how to crochet

It has been about 16 years since a crochet hook has been in my hand. I knew how to when I was younger but somehow forgot how when I was pregnant with the youngest. Some people lose words, I lost the ability to crochet.

This weekend I went on an unexpected road trip ( Left Friday afternoon, returned Sunday evening 21 hours driving) and packed in such a haste, I forgot to add in hand stitching. I was with my sister and she asked if I wanted her to pick up a crochet needle an some yarn for me since she was going to pick out some new yarn for knitting.  My sister is one of those amazing people that has the creative morphing super power! She can do anything AND she makes it seem effortless.  I love her for many many reasons but this exceptional super power has always impressed the snot out of me!

I reminded her that I forgot how to crochet (  darn pregnancy amnesia) but she insisted that I would be able to pick it right back up.  Did I mention how much I love my sister?  She is very supportive!

She came back and handed me this beautiful variegated cotton yarn and a matching crochet hook.  I may have squealed a touch! So PRETTY

I played a bit with single chain stitching and had the hang of it ( YAY ME)! I went on youtube and found this great video to help get me started with relearning how to make granny squares. If you have some knowledge of crochet and need a good video for pretty granny squares, this is IT!




Now that I am back home, I will be able to see the video on a larger screen ( much needed for my oldish eyes) and I am looking forward to making more of these beautiful blue blocks! Creativity is in us all, even if sometimes we think we don't remember how! YouTube has EVERYTHING 😊






Wednesday, January 3, 2018

New Year's ReSEWlutions!

How are you starting off your New Year?



Do you pick a word?  

Do you make resolutions?

Have you planned out your days?

Have the closet purgings commenced?

Here it is just everyday stuff.  I tend not to make any sort of big ( or small gestures) to greet the days that the sunlight is lasting just a bit longer... maybe I have reSEWlutions 😀

I made the New York Beauty Block above↑↑↑

I was able to bind a mini quilt I made for a friend



And I made a dress from start to finish in about two hours! The pattern is The Wiggle Dress by Patterns for Pirates.

Lots of static and a few wrinkles but BOOM DONE!  Even with two kids home and a lingering cold, I was able to make it happen! 


Maybe I was meant to sew as I go or sew and throw ( if you have seen my sewing studio you would YELL YES to the latter).  Plans or goals are wonderful, if I could just get life and my kids to remember to read them 😂😂😂

Happy New Year and I look forward to spending more days sewing and sharing with you!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Block of the Month + Sew Alongs for 2018

Out with the old and in with the new!

Every year we look back to see what we have accomplished and look forward to what we will be taking on in the coming year.

In 2018 there is a plethora of fun Block of the Month and Quilt Alongs that will keep you entertained, engaged and inspired for the entire year!

Some of these are free and some are a paid subscription. All of them are incredible!


Block of the Month 2018


For something a little different, Gail Pan has an embroidery Block of the Month! Take some time to sit down and enjoy stitching up these precious embroideries! You can join this BOM or Stitch of the Month by visiting Gail Pan Designs.

Welcome to my new “i stitch” PDF Club.
I hope you enjoy the BOM “send my love” that I have designed for 2018.
Each month for 12 months, starting January 2018, there will be 3 embroidered tag designs as well as one small pattern that will use one of the designs. You may use whichever design you like for the small patterns. In December there will be a quilt pattern for all the designs.

embroidery

 

Kim from Persimion Dreams will be hosting a fun Sew Along for her Dresden Neighborhood Mini Quilt! You can join in by visiting Persimon Dreams!

In 2018 I’m going to run a #DresdenNeighbhoodSAL.  That’s right!  I’m going to sew 12 Dresden Neighborhood blocks in 12 months!  By the end of 2018 I’ll have a full size 72” x 96” quilt (at a minimum … there may be some border treatment options) and I’d love to have you join in.




My good friend Pat Sloan is back again with a FREE BOM called Let's Go Camping!  Pat always has the best BOM and stories to go along with them!  Start packing your camper with the details by visiting Pat Sloan's website!

When I think of my very first camping trip, it was with the girl scouts for a summer camp sleepover. That is my girl scout silverware set, did you have one of those?  I'll be sharing my original camping  ... mmm ... 'experience' with you in the near future..  Since my first camping was very woodsy, I went with outdoor colors, which will make a great guy quilt if you are planning to make one for someone special.
But.. truth be told... I'm more a glamper girl. So I can see this done is a totally different light color fabric way.

Pat Sloan




Kimberly and the Fat Quarter Shop Gang are hosting another charity BOM to benefit St. Jude's Children Hospital in 2018. Clementine is a beautiful quilt and the cause is very worthwhile! Find out more by visiting The Jolly Jabber.

Our Clementine Quilt Along benefits the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to help advance cures and means of prevention for catastrophic pediatric diseases. Fat Quarter Shop is happy to be partnering with Moda Fabrics to match up to $20,000 of donations for this awesome cause. And, on top of that, we will auction our Clementine Quilt Along quilt at the end of the program, and 100% of the auction proceeds will go to our St. Jude campaign. So please DONATE today!









Want to try Triangles? Becca Bryan from Bryan House Quilts has a the perfect way to use lots of color ( we all love color) and angles galore! Get your angle on by visiting Bryan House Quilts!

During the first 5 months we'll make 25 triangle blocks. The triangle patterns can all be found in my book, Modern Triangle Quilts. During the next 6 months we'll puzzle the colored triangles together into rectangle blocks. Finally, the last month will be devoted to quilt assembly and the final reveal. I'll also show how I colored the quilt and give you a few fun tips.




The Quilter's Planner has been a huge part of my life this past year and will be again in 2018! It helps you keep track of life ( no small task) but also encourages you to make the time to do what you LOVE the most!  

They hosted a lovely BOM last year and are doing it again this year! I am super exciting to be joining this one and hope you will too! You can find more information by visiting The Quilter's Planner!

 
We’re hoping you’ll join us on Facebook and Instagram as we sew the 2018 QP Sampler Quilt Block of the Month (BOM) pattern.  We’ve even made these free downloadable coloring pages to make it easier to plan your version of the 2018 sampler quilt (see below for the download).
 All you need to participate in our BOM sew-along is your copy of the 2018 Quilter’s Planner and the accompanying pattern magazine.
Check out our Facebook group and Instagram  for tips with you for sewing a beautiful sampler.  You can get support and help along the way by asking our QP experts and group members.  You can join in at any point during the new year.  It’s never too late.




Jacquelynne Steves always has fantastic BOM that feature a variety of ways to make blocks! I joined her BOM in 2016 and it was a BLAST!   I even taught myself to thread paint! Check out my How to Thread Paint


There’s still time to jump in on the fun!! The I Love Home Free BOM will have 4 different blocks, and it will start in August and run through December. Once again, you will have the following options for making your blocks:
* you can just piece them
*OR you can applique them (hand or machine – I did machine applique)
*OR you can do simple hand embroidery (just 2 super easy stitches – the backstitch and French knots – plus I have a YouTube tutorial for those stitches)

You will get my easy-to-follow step by step instructions, with lots of diagrams, to make all 4 blocks and to add borders to make this quilt (finished size 54 x 68″)




I LOVE this new product and quilt BOM from Heather Valentine and Amy Ellis!  Inspiring Stitches made its debut at Fall Quilt Market and was a very HOT item! This sweet calendar includes lovely quilt blocks!  Heather and Amy are hosting a fun quilt along to go along with their blocks in the calendar. Get your Inspiring Stitches Calendar and start planning your Heartland Heritage quilt!


The second Wednesday of each month, Amy and I will be posting our new blocks, made with fresh fabrics and a helpful hint or tip as needed. We are calling it our Sewday, and hope that you will join us. As you can see from the pictures above we both have a similar style but tend to pull from different areas of the color wheel. It’s really fun to find that we have the same fabric in different places in our quilts.




Cristy Fincher is bringing in the New Year with a stars! Lots and lots of beautiful stars! Join the Stellar Stars Club by visiting Purple Daisies Quilting!

Stellar Stars is a dynamic quilt filled with 16 different skill building blocks that will excite and challenge you. Each month, beginning January 12th, you’ll receive a new block (some months you’ll receive 2 blocks!) to create, as you sew your way to making your own Stellar Stars quilt. Whether you’re a new or experienced quilter, building your piecing skills and confidence is what this BOM is all about. By the end of the year, you’ll have learned some new skills and fine tuned a few old ones as well. Plus, you’ll have an amazing quilt to show for it! 



Becky from Patchwork Posse has a fun FREE Block of the Month! Three's Company Block of the Month is starting soon so be sure to visit Patchwork Posse to find out all the details! 





Katja Marek has a delightful Block of the Month for her book Distinctive Dresdens! To sign up for this Sew Along visit Katja's Quilt Shoppe!


Rainy Days and Sun Days is a free online quilt-along based on my book Distinctive Dresdens (the book is required to make the blocks). Monthly instructions will be posted starting January 2018.
This quilt-along consists of two quilts:
Rainy Day Umbrellas 72" x 84" a bed sized quilt easily made larger by adding a plain or pieced border.
Sun Day Parasols 42" x 72" a companion wall-hanging for the bed-sized quilt.



Sarah Fielke has a FANTASTIC new Block of the Month that is sure to make you happy the New Year has started! Fine out more about this sweet Block of the Month by visiting Block of the Month by Sarah Fielke!

Unlike most Blocks of the Month, a Sarah Fielke BOM starts from a hand drawn sketch. Each month a new section of the quilt is revealed through PDF patterns and instructional videos, hosted on a private website. The delivery format allows you to work with your own fabric, meaning your quilt will be a reflection of your personal style and colour taste - and it saves on shipping! Work through the quilt at your own pace with help from Sarah, while chatting and sharing with other quilters through a private Facebook group.








Ebony Love will be dazzling us in the Hanami adventure! Everyone needs an adventure every now and again!  Grab your passport and visit Love Bug Studios to board your flight to fun!

Join us on our Hanami adventure with a skill-building BOM and eight complementary quilt patterns representing each region of Japan, as breathtaking as the blooms themselves! You’ll receive a passport for your travels, and you may join us as a Guest, Tourist, or VIP!   The BOM quilt finishes at 58″ x 58″.




Pat Sloan has a second FREE BOM that is a great way to get through the Winter months! Visit I Love to Make Quilts to find out even more about what you will need to get warm in January!

Summer Time activities and memories are so sweet, and there is no better time than winter to keep pull out all our warm summery thoughts and stitch them into a quilt.
Each week we'll sew a block and celebrate a Summer Time activity.  It might be Old traditions, New Traditions, songs, favorite foods, or memories of childhood summers that pop up over the twenty weeks we sew together. 
At the end we’ll have a wonderful Quilt full of yummy memories just in time to celebrate Summer!

Pat Sloan



Fort Worth Fabric Studio's Block of the Month Star Spangled is a five month commitment to make a great quilt fully ready for July 4th! For more about this quilt, please visit Fort Worth Fabric Studio!

I really loved designing this quilt-along!  I put a little bit of everything that I love in this quilt design.  Star blocks, chains, and there's a pinwheel in there too! :) 






Do you love to paper piece? Claudia's Quilt has a FREE Butterfly Block of the Month that will be starting in February! You can find all the details by visiting Claudia's Quilts.

Because I love them very much and I wanted to have a quilt only
with them as motiv the next series again are butterflies.

This time the blocks will be slightly bigger (8 x 8 inch) and the butterflies
will be a little bit more colorful  than in my "Big Quilt of Nature" because I chose exotic species.

Alltogether there will be 12 different paperpieced butterflies
and one paperpiecing pattern for the sashings, if you like to assemble the quilt my way.



The Quilt Show is introducing a new Block of the Month program for their Star Members! When you join you will have access to monthly blocks by the fabulous Edyta Sitar! Visit The Quilt Show website for more information about making this stunning quilt in 2018! 

Join us on a TQS exclusive 12-month creative journey along America’s back country roads as we bring you "The Patchwork Barn Quilt," a fabulous quilt designed especially for TQS by Edyta Sitar. A spectacular sampler quilt featuring a barn nestled among rows of ‘crops’ (blocks). Edyta’s design inspiration was the result of observing the wide variety of quilt blocks painted on the side of barns while traveling across the country.
Known for her love of colorfully elegant scrap quilts, Edyta has this time used her magic touch by combining a wide variety of blue and cream fabrics set against a neutral background. The resulting design is a stunning, but quieter, scrap quilt that is sure to be a family favorite for generations to come. Each month we will provide photos, detailed directions for a portion of the quilt, and full-size patterns.

Edyta Sitar

Sue Pellan Designs  has a Block of the Month for a lovely traditional quilt using her specialized tools. My Magical Garden starts in March but you can join and find more information by visiting Sue Pellan Designs.






I will be adding to this list as I find more BOM and Sew Alongs that you will love!

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Holiday Hangover Giveaway!

Happy Holidays!  After the usual feast, gift exchange, clean up ( oh the dreaded clean up) there is inevitably a let down...a noticeable lull...it is the holiday hangover!

This year I decided to host a little giveaway to keep the fun going to get into the New Year ( HELLO 2018)!

The giveaway includes:
A fat quarter bundle of Black Tie from Moda Fabrics, Mollie Makes Patchwork and three spools of Aurifil 50wt thread.

One winner will receive this bundle  ( YAY! )  You can enter for your chance to win by visiting my Facebook Page, My Go-Go Life.

The giveaway ends 01 Jan and a random winner will chosen or or about 01 Jan ( depending how well we all are!) and the winner will be announced on Facebook.  Good luck!




Tuesday, December 19, 2017

It Takes a Tomte Village ( link to pattern )

When I started making these blocks, I did not realize that I would become addicted to them.  These special little Tomte are all made with a pattern by Sue from Moss and Lotus and can be found by visiting here.

Each of the ladies and gents come to life while creating them.  They are all so individual. I am pulling from my stash for the blocks. It is a variety of whatever comes together.  They all seem to have one thing that pulls me in and then I build from there.  I am stitching all of these paper pieced blocks using Aurifil 50wt  thread. 

The thin thread helps to keep the blocks flat! That is something everyone LOVES!!!!


Meet Nickolai:


Nikolai is a planner. He planned ahead for the collection of fireflies needed to get him through the Winter months as he knew they would be an absolute necessity for his upcoming tasks.
 
See, Nikolai cannot go out in the sun during the day and does not get the chance to be out with all of the Tomte villagers so he makes lists all day. He watches people and makes lists of who is good and who is not so good...
 
In his spare time he also happens to be a woodworker and some say even a toy maker 😉
 
In December under the cloak of dark skies, one night out of the year, he packs up his special craftsman's items, puts his fireflies in a lantern and heads out to secretly give gifts to the villagers to show his appreciation of those that are particularly kind or generous to others.


Today I made the first of the ladies of the village.


Klarissa made her own ensemble from bits and pieces of what she had in her home. The black fabrics are vintage flour sacks and she grabbed little bits of red to bring it all to life.
 
Although her given name is quite lovely she prefers to be called Klare. She is a simple girl with her nose in a book and her hands in the 🌏. 

 
Klare has no time for frivolous activities nor romantic involvements with the villagers. Many of them are nar do wells or Tinkers ( as her Irish relatives would say). There was that one boy, many years ago now, named Franke but he became quite the rebel ( so she has been told) and has taken to motorbikes and wearing silly dots! Of all things to wear...DOTS!


So Klare has chosen the life of minimal objects and intrusions. She focuses on real things like hand crafts and written word. Those will never let her down...not like Franke...
She often wonders where he is now...


You can see that I am more than a little taken with this entire community of Tomte.

I will be making more leading up to Christmas and I would love for you to join me on Instagram ( I am gogokim) where I post about all kinds of sewing and other things because my life is much more than sewing ( but not by much).


 
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