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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Unexpected excitement

I have been getting some unusually good mail lately but I was very surprised at what arrived in my post box today...

Let me share what I had also received the past two days because they are also very cool :o)

First, Brooke at apriltwoeighty and I had another little swap and she sent me some to live for fabrics...drool!!! Thank you Brooke! And if you have not seen Brooke's new is a must see!!!!

I also received this sweet package from Sukie  and I already have plans for that cute little charm pack! Thank you so much,you are awesome!!!

Now, I knew Sara was going to be in the new publication Modern Quilting...

My copy came in the mail today and I was running back to the house to tear it open to see this...LOVE this bag Sara!!!! Congratulations :o)

Then I was reading the rest of the magazine while waiting in the parent pick up line at Katy's school and mentally planning out how to budget in fabric for the Amy Butler and Kate Spain ( I am in love with Good Fortune) quilts featured. Both are very good! I got to page 57 and...ummm...OMG!!!!!!  Right there, next to my sweetie Sara is MY GO-GO LIFE...WHAT!?!?!  I had no idea and I was GOBSMACKED !!!!  If you know me in know that is HUGE!!!  I am very excited to be able to say that I will be in the magazine again with a super sweet pattern to share :o)

I am going to scrape myself off the ceiling and, make some more quilt steps and giggle a whole bunch :o)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Time to get READY!!!!!

I was sewing most of the weekend and this is one thing I could not wait to share!!!!! I first saw her on Heather's blog and fell in LOVE!!!! Katy said I should leave her faceless, I am undecided. You can buy the pattern to make this sweet thing here.

Are you all ready? I am very excited that it is only one week until we start the New York Beauty QAL. The first in the series will be right here on March week from today!!!!!

This is the block we will be making

 I have chosen Joel Dewberry Heirloom for the blocks.

If you have not chosen your fabric yet or just love more fabric hop on over to Sara's blog and enter for a chance to win this beautiful fabric.

Finally, this is my submission to the Aurifil thread contest for Alex's timeline :o) There have been some really good ones! So many creative people :o)


Thursday, February 23, 2012

How very cool is this Aurifil contest!

I cannot tell you all how much I have loved using Aurifil thread.  I have been able to use the same cone since December. Every project that I have posted {and some that I 've not been able to post} has been sewn with Aurifil. Now is your chance to win FORTY EIGHT large spools of your choice of weight a rainbow of colors!!!!

{photo snagged from Aurifil Buzz}

The contest particulars are here on the Aurifil Buzz blog. So bring out your mind reading skills and create a fun and fantastic timeline header for what Alex is thinking :o)

I submitted mine and my fingers are crossed.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Blocks and snow!

Block progress!!!!!!! I am committed to finishing this quilt and the couple of others I have going BEFORE I start anything new. Okay, except for the New York Beauty Blocks...oh and maybe the Granny Squares...GAH!

Six more this week!!!!!

Super horrible night shot of the board :o)

There was also sledding this week!!!!!

And who can have sledding without hot chocolate with whipped cream :o)

But this was the best thing about this little LOVE...

Monday, February 20, 2012

First Finish Fishy Friends

Thank goodness!!!!! I finally have a finish for 2012!!!!! Fishy Friends was completed on Saturday and I was also able to finish Darth Vader's poorly constructed cape collar on Sunday. It was a very happy weekend of sewing for me:o)

This is also the first quilt that was completely made with Aurifil thread. I am completely lovin this thread. 

The back has a whole small sea of those cute guys!

The front  is simple lines so the wonky fish will be the highlight { that is my hope anyway}

I did a randomish diagonal grid for boyish fun. The binding is machine sewn.

I love Bjorn :o)


Saturday, February 18, 2012

Saturday sharing

I had mentioned that I was red and purple scrap challenged and Meg at The Mad Quilting Librarian let me know she had some and would be willing to do a swap with me. Oh how lucky was I...

Oh how I LOVE these purples!!!!

Stunning reds!!!! I cannot wait to get these into more steps!!!! Many many thanks Meg!!!!!!!

I bought some  Loulouthi that is still on sale {really incredible sale} at Crazy Quilt Girl and they showed up in my mailbox this week . I needed solids but these were TOO fabulous to pass up!!!!! Solids will have to be in next month's budget ;p

Finally, my first finish of 2012!!!!! I will post about it this week :o)

This is the second one I was able to sandwich up on Friday and is next on the quilting list...

I hope everyone is having a great weekend!!!!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

New York Beauty Quilt Along!!!!!!

I'm very excited to announce the New York Beauty Quilt Along! This quilt along is all about paper piecing. If you've never done paper piecing before, it might sound a little bit scary, but trust me, you can do it! The quilt along will feature step-by-step photos and instructions for each block by some very talented quilters, to give you the confidence to get off and running!

New York Beauty block from Kati of From the Blue Chair

We will be working with 10 New York Beauty blocks, and you can get a preview of the blocks here. Each block instruction makes one 8" x 8" block (as shown in the graphics); you can either assemble 4 of the same block to make one large 15.5" x 15.5" block (as pictured above), or you can mix and match to make something beautiful!

Here are the approximate fabric requirements if you are planning on making all ten 8" x 8" blocks:

- 10 fat eighths for main fabrics (or 5 fat quarters or scrap fabric)
- 1-1/2 yards background fabric

Sew Sweetness

And here is the schedule for the block tutorials:

March 5 - Kim from My Go-Go Life {Block 0}
March 12 - Sara from Sew Sweetness {Block 5}
March 19 - Megan from Canoe Ridge Creations (Block 1}
March 26 - Kati from From the Blue Chair {Block 8}
April 2 - Jeni from In Color Order {Block 7}
April 9 - Amy from Sukie Don't You Know Who I Am? {Block 6}
April 16 - Katy from The Littlest Thistle {Block 2}
April 23 - Lee from Freshly Pieced {Block 4}
April 30 - Amy from Amy Lou Who {Block 3}
May 7 - Lindsay from Lindsay Sews {Block 9}

If you are thinking about participating, please join the Flickr Group!
We'll be sharing fabric choices and help along the way!

So...are you game?! Grab a button and we'll see you on March 5th for the first block of the series!!

{stolen from Sara's page, LOVE YA Sara!!!!}

Monday, February 13, 2012

Courthouse Steps {a tutorial}

These courthouse steps are a wonderful way to start paper piecing if you have never tried. These blocks are also a great scrap buster. I hope you will give these a try. If you do not want to make a whole quilt you can always make a pin cushion!!!!!

I was able to check the book out at my local library and it does have some other beautiful blocks too! I found an online free pattern here but does not have a conversion to a 6.5 block, the chart on the bottom of their page has conversions to other sizes that you might find useful. The pattern for an 8.5 block is here .  For this tutorial all the measurements are for the 6.5 in block in the book. All seams are 1/4 in.

This will be pic overload since I am gong to try to walk you through each and every step that I do. I apologize for the bad night photography and the amount of photos. By the time you have finished your first block I know you are going to say..." Is that all there is to this" at least I hope that is what you say ;o) 

If any step is unclear please shoot me a msg so hopefully I can explain it better.

What you will need

printout of your block trimmed up
glue stick
rotary cutter, 
small cutting board {if you have one}
small ruler

Fabric needed:
block 1:                2x2 in print
block 2 and 3:      2x2 solid
block 4 and 5:      3.5x2 print
block 6 and 7:      3.5 2 solid
blocks 8 and 9:     5x2 in print
blocks 10 and 11: 5x2 in solid
blocks 12 and 13: 7x2 in print 

Set your stitch length to about 1.5 . This will help when you tear the paper off at the end.

Take your first square 2x2 and put a wee bit of glue on the middle of the back of the fabric

Pop that sucker right in the middle of the center square

you can hold it up to the light and see that you are well over ALL the lines and that is where you want to be

I am sure there are many ways to do this but this method has been working for me because I cannot get the "where the heck do I put the next piece of fabric" thought outta my head...I need some visual cues to go by.

I prefold the lines. Then when I flip that paper over I can see where I am supposed to be next.

See the two lines? I cut the the white a bit too big ( it was a 3x3) but it will work. You can see where you need to place the white to make sure you have that 1/4 in seam. Since the print is glued down I just hold the solid in place when doing the flip in the next step. just make sure that the solid does not fold when you are sliding it under your foot ( that is what the seam ripper is for).

Flip the paper over and sew between the number 1 and number 2 line.

Take your paper out, trim your threads and fold at the seam you just sewed

Take your ruler and trim to 1/4 in

Flip that first solid step over

Take your second solid step and lay it on top of the the number 1 step. You can see the fold on the opposite side to be your guide.

Holding the number 3 piece on place...flip and sew...

trim, fold at the seam and trim to 1/4 in...

Flip them both open...FIRST round DONE!!!!! WOO HOO!

Time for more prefolding.  pre fold the 4,5 and 6 lines

To make the lining up of the fabric steps easier, I also pre-trimmed my previous steps. You can do this by folding down the line between , for example 3 and 7 in this photo, and with the previous step fabric flap out just trim to 1/4 in.

Where the 1,2 and 3 meet for you can pre-trim also using the same technique

When doing this make sure your flaps are out

 This will make lining up SO DANG EASY!

Next round of print steps and you already know that when you place this piece of fabric on it will already have 1/4 in ;o) Isn't that nice!

I forgot to take the sew in between the number shot...sorry :o(  Sew between the 1,2,3 and 4 line flip and if you want to check your 1/4 in this is a good time.

Add number 5 and we are on to another round!!!! Already looking GOOD!

More pre-folding

Fold down the edges and I flipped it so you can see how much difference pre-trimming can make

Next round of solid steps. Lay your fabric on top...

Sew on the 6 line

Repeat on the 7 and you are over half way DONE!!!!!!

Pre-fold and trim up for the next round

All trimmed up and ready for the next print steps

lay the fabric down

Sew the 8 line

Turn and flip down...

Add you next step and sew on the 9 line, sooooooo close to being to the end

Pre-fold then trim

Last round of solids!!! I do not trim on this round. The final trimming will be when the last set of solids and prints are on.

Sew and flip!

Add the other side and sew on the 11 line...

Okay, the last round of steps is here!!!! Number 12 my friends!!!!

and then lucky number 13...

All done sewing!

Give a quick dry press with the paper still on the back

Then trim around the outside line. Never ever use your good rotary cutter! I have two. This step can be done with scissors too.

All trimmed

Now carefully pull off the paper back. I try to fold first to make it easier

 The sections that are not on the outside edge you can either use your nail or a little nudge with the seam ripper helps too ;o)

Then you are done!!!!! Time to go make some more!!!!!!

I hope this is helpful. These blocks have been addicting to me!

If you find yourself making some too, I'd love to see them!!!!! Just add them into my Flickr pool. and even though it says Cathedral Windows, I really like seeing ANYTHING that you guys do, so please share!!!!!

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