Falling Leaves All Around

Yesterday, our magnolia tree in our yard had almost all of its leaves. This morning, it had two. TWO. My 5 year old kiddo had a BLAST jumping in the piles my husband made. My husband did not have a blast making the piles. Meanwhile, I made cookies inside where it was warm while the baby napped.

I also just recently finished a very topical quilt called Falling Leaves, from Connecting Threads. I love them because their fabrics are always super soft and the kits are always reasonably priced.

When I saw this quilt I fell in love with the soft, warm colors of the leaves and the plaid (which I immediately bought 7 and a half yards for the backing).

IMG_2140The kit isn’t actually available anymore, since I bought it in fall 2017 and just this year got around to making it. This turned out to be an issue because Connecting Threads didn’t give me enough of one of the fabrics needed (although when I called they let me pick a replacement fabric and sent it to me ASAP) and there almost wasn’t enough for yardage for the backing even though I bought exactly as much as they said to buy. The lesson I learned is check your kits when you get them. (Not that I’ll ever follow that lesson…)

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My quilting mom (my mother-in-law who taught me to quilt) was extremely generous inletting me steal her long arm and use it to quilt this quilt. At first, I envisioned doing some real fancy quilting, but when it came down to it… I chickened out and just did an all over loopy meander. Which, to be honest, I loved the look of once it was finished. I’m pretty proud of how “circular” my circles actually turned out.

I bound the quilt with a yellow plaid and borrowed one of my new neighbor’s front yards (and their mums and their pumpkins) to take a few photos of the quilt before the good weather disappeared for good! I was trying to hold out to find a tree with low hanging branches and beautiful leaves, but… I didn’t find one in time. I also stuck it in our magnolia

I’ve been doing a few quilts in the past few months, but life is finally starting to slow down enough where I can find a few moments in between life to quilt a bit more. Hopefully I can pick up posting them as well.

Bonus picture of our cat enjoying the quilt just as much as us (if not more!) Enjoy the rest of your fall and stay warm!

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Caribbean Waves Quilt (Craftsy Kit)

A friend of mine from Virginia was getting married; and so of course I had to make her a IMG_2099quilt! I met her at work, my last year. (Of course). And over that year, we hung out several times a month outside of work; she quickly became my best friend. I was so sad that I was leaving Charlottesville after JUST finding her!

But after she got married she moved down to New Orleans, and I’m sorry love, but no matter how much I like you, I am NOT moving to where you walk outside and it isn’t air but humid soup you walk into.

I had gotten this kit for myself in purple (still isn’t finished, of course), and loved it so much I got it in the blue as well. I *almost* kept both of them.

This quilt is a pretty simple design, made out of just two IMG_2100blocks that alternate; but the result is a gorgeous effect that gives an insane amount of depth to the design.

The purple quilt makes me think of space, and I almost did quilting to reflect that in this quilt, but the blues put me in mind of the crystal clear waters of the caribbean. So I chose a swirl to try to mimic the waves, and I’m pretty pleased how that turned out.

IMG_2090The fabric line was a new one that I haven’t worked with before- Boundless Fabrics from Craftsy. I love how soft they are, but MAN do they put out some crazy lint! I had to clean my machine pretty much each bobbin change there was that much lint/fuzz. But the fabric was easy to work with and the colors were oh-so vibrant. I’d definitely buy them for another project in the future.

Since I had met this friend down in Virginia and her wedding was there, I knew on the way down there was a scenic overlook that I knew would be PERFECT place to take the photos of the quilt. And indeed; both quilt and backdrop are spectacular.


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This quilt was also one of the first times I put my tags into the binding, and I have to sayit was much faster and easier than hand sewing them on afterwards. And I think they turned out well! Maybe for future quilts I’ll have more professional looking labels made for the corners from Etsy.

 

Hopefully I get the purple version done soon so I can show you both versions completed! (Although the background for that one will not be nearly as gorgeous as this!)

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My “Special Snowflake” Quilt

I’m baaaack! It’s been a long time since I’ve made a post! Almost a year, in fact. Life was quite busy, what with moving from Virginia to Ohio and having a baby 6 months after that. Quilting took a back seat for awhile, due to my pregnancy making me super tired and taking a little bit  to set up my sewing room. But I finally got back at it… just in time for my daughter to be born. And Athena loves to be held and is a light sleeper, so quilting fell by the wayside a little bit after she was born. But I have a couple completed quilts to show over the next few weeks and hopefully will have more as time goes on!

And yes, I’m referring to my husband when I named this quilt “Special Snowflake.” He loves me anyway. Mostly because I made him this quilt!

This quilt was done using Rob Appell’s take on the 3 Dudes Quilt. It’s a really great tutorial, and he’s pretty precise on his directions. I like it because you only need one jelly roll of your choice and one 1.5” roll of your choice of solid color. I chose white because husband asked for a winter-esqe quilt, and I thought the white would stand out nicely against the blue. Plus it reminded me of snow with the blues representing ice.

While Rob makes the quilt look easy, it was definitely a learning experience for me (and not always a fun one!) When you put the blocks together, the seams meet up and get VERY bulky if you aren’t careful. As well, I had some blocks that weren’t quite the same size, and had to be stretched a bit.

I’ve never done a border like the one on this quilt (and no, I’m not talking about the solid border, but the pieced one.) I knew from previous quilts I had to be really careful about the strips stretching when I ironed them out, but they still weren’t even.

By the time the quilt was done, when I tried to lay it flat on the ground, the borders were so wavy they wouldn’t lay flat. I was a bit bummed but sent it off to the long armers anyway… and the quilting helped. It was near perfect when I got it back!

I’m really happy with how it turned out at the end, and got it done just in time to give to my husband for Christmas! He enjoys it, and uses it often (at least when I’m around!)

I’ll try to get the next post up in a week or so. See you then!

Elephant Baby Quilt

IMG_2011Another baby quilt; this time it’s for another little boy and my instructions were as follows: navy blue and lime green colors. The rest was up to me.

I had recently obtained a tumbler template from Missouri Star Quilt Company, and hadn’t had a chance to use it yet, so I decided this would be a perfect time to do so! Using some different shades of white/grey/off white fabric from my stash and some navy and lime green yardage, this came together quite nicely! (Especially since it was my first time using the template.)

Originally I had wanted to do triangles instead of the tumbler block, but I don’t have a triangle ruler and it was shaping up to be pretty confusing. (I’m sure, eventually, I will wind up doing a triangle quilt and I will find it much easier, but today is not that day!)

It turned out looking pretty modern – I have to say, when I heard the colors “navy blue” and “lime green” together, I was a bit nonplussed – I had never thought to put them together before.IMG_2013

But after this quilt… yeah, this is high on my color choice combos for boyo quilts from now on. It’s so striking, I absolutely love it! Not to mention the quilting, which is elephants marching from row to row. My LAQ even managed to get them marching around the corner instead of doing a simple edge-to-edge.

Fun story- I actually didn’t have this quilt finished in time for the baby shower, which actually turned out perfectly! When I went, the theme was green, blue, and elephants, so that decided me on the quilting pattern! (Oops!)

I’m just head-over-heels for this quilt! I think it turned out absolutely stunning!

It’s hard to believe we’re just a few weeks away from our move. I’m about two weeks behind right now on my 365 Challenge, but I’ve been feeling really under the weather lately, so hopefully when that clears up I can get caught up again!

365 Challenge – Weeks 13 & 14

Yay! After this we’re all caught up! Just in time for me to fall drastically behind again! (Really, though, I’m not planning on it. But it’ll happen at some point again this year, I’m sure.)

This post is a little late- life has been crazy and I’ve been absolutely exhausted after school each day, so not much gets done at home! But there’s only 4 weeks left of school so that will be a nice break soon.

As always, you can find directions for the daily blocks here.

Week 13
March 26 – April 1

This week was a bit interesting. Finishing off March and starting on April – officially a quarter of the way through the challenge! Hopefully I can keep up with all the moving and whatnot!

Week 14
April 2 – 8

This week we finished up the borders for the central medallion! And I put it all together; I really enjoy how it turned out. I actually picked the colors in the corner blocks to match one color each from the adjoining borders.

Because of that, though, my center medallion doesn’t quite match up with the directions for a couple of reasons. A) I did the grey differently in one of the borders to match the first flying geese border. B) Because I picked the colors each day, the arrangement of the borders and corner blocks is different than in the directions. Oh well.

Here’s a picture of the final center block all put together!

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Yer a wizard, ‘Arry! (Harry Potter Baby Quilt)

A good friend of mine at work is having a baby this June, and so of course I had to make her a baby quilt. It was super easy to come up with a theme- she absolutely loves everything Harry Potter. She mentioned once or twice that she liked the chevron pattern, so I thought it would be fun to do a chevron pattern with the Hogwarts’ House colors.

Originally that was going to be it. But as I was piecing it, I decided it needed something more. And I wanted to add her kiddo’s name- Liam. Now, Harry Potter has a very unique font associated with it- and it’s got lots of jagged lines. But I was determined!IMG955163.jpg

I freehand drew the letters of the name out, got them all traced and cut out, and then realized that there were font generators online where I could have TYPED it out in the font, printed THAT, and then traced THAT. So I did that with the date, but there was no way in hell I was redoing the name. Plus I was kinda proud of how it came out. Yes, the ‘m’ is slightly smaller – but nobody knows until I point it out.

Wait. Shoot.

Anyways, moving on – the IMG955155backing is just simple black because I REALLY wanted the quilting to stand out. My LAQ had a Harry Potter themed edge to edge design, and it was PERFECT. I chose a silver/grey thread to really pop on the back and somewhat blend on the front without blurring the lettering. I finished the quilt off with black binding.

I’m absolutely in love with this quilt. It turned out unbelievably well! I know it’ll be treasured for years to come- hopefully the little one likes Harry Potter!

I did forget to take pictures of the quilt before gifting it, but my friend was super nice and took some pictures of it at her house and sent them to me. So there isn’t a traditional “hung up” one, but they’re quality photos nonetheless! She has an awesome camera and a pretty good eye for photography. Maybe someday she’ll let me borrow the quilt for a couple minutes to snap a couple more.

 

365 Challenge – Weeks 10 through 12

So I’m behind on keeping the blog updated on the 365 Challenge. I’m actually up to date on the actual challenge, so I have all my blocks, I just fell behind on the photography part. Don’t even get me started on the Solstice Challenge- I’m ACTUALLY behind on that one. Only by two blocks, but still. Feels like a lot more.

The good news is that since this is my spring break week (yay!) I had time today to take pictures of all of my blocks and I’m going to post three weeks at a time. Since we’re on week 14 right now, that’ll catch us up in just two weeks or so. Maybe three, I don’t know, I’m not a math teacher.

My to-do list as far as quilting is SO long. I’ve got a baby quilt I’m finishing up and then a doggone (this is a pun, you just don’t know it yet) commission to work on!

And this on top of working and getting ready to move. We’re moving back to the Midwest in less than two months, which is crazy town! I can’t believe how fast time has flown by this year!

Anyways, to the whole point of this post- you get three weeks of blocks today! Although I’m super excited for this current week – we’re finishing up the center portion of the quilt! It’s really quite pretty! I may have to sneak it in with its own post so I can show everyone.

Week 10
March 5 – 11

My favorite this week was either the Art Square or the March Basket. The toughest was definitely Birds In The Air (first one) due to using the techniques used for the large black triangle. It was pretty tricky to get the hang of, but by the second block I had it down pretty well. The tiny HSTs of the March Basket (last one) were… actually kind of fun.

Week 11
March 12 – 18

I can get mitered corners pretty well, but when it comes to Y-seams, I cannot get it to come out flat! There’s always a little ripple! You’ll see what I mean in some of the blocks coming up this week and in later weeks.

However, I do really enjoy the mitered corners method. For some reason I can get those to lay PERFECTLY. God only knows why. That being said, my favorites this week were the Pinwheel Star and the Lattice Square (1 & 5 respectively).

Week 12
March 19 – 25

There were so many classic blocks that I got to try for the first time this week! Log cabin, pineapple block, snail trail… also, this week I happen to have no less than 5 favorites that  I can’t choose between. I guess my top two are Sarah’s Favorite and the Buttercup blocks (1 & 3 respectively). I absolutely love checkerboard patterns, and the flower is just darling.

The log cabins are a struggle for me, because for some reason I can’t get them straight. It could be my cutting or my piecing. I’m not sure and I can’t figure out why. This week also came with a bonus block, so there’s eight this week instead of 7!

Anyways, time to finish up that baby quilt.