Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Secret Project is Complete!

I literally just finished the last stitch. I turned off my machine and went outside to take pictures. I still need to wash it and then do some better photos. Excuse any threads you may see.

I ended up doing all straight quilting. I was going to do stippling on all the white but changed my mind. I'm glad I did.

The back. I was just a little short and had to add a bit.

Love how it looks on the back too. 

So, what's the big secret about this quilt? After I wash it and take some decent photos tomorrow, I am entering the quilt in this. I'm a little nervous but excited. Voting starts next week. I am going to make a button for my sidebar so voting will be easier (especially for you, mom). Phew, that was a hard secret to keep but I love this quilt and I hope some other people will too.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

March UFO Finally Done!

It's still March, right? Oh well, I fell behind on this one, but here it is finally finished. I got the hanging sleeve sewn down yesterday afternoon.

Definitely not perfect, but I like it. I don't usually wash wall hangings but I might wash this one since it is so heavily quilted - everything is quilted except the windows and doors. 

Some of the fabrics on the back. Since I knew this quilt was going to be for me, I tried to use up some scraps on the back. There's at least 7 fabrics in the photo above.

Its new home... for now. It's a little long for behind out bed but we are moving at the end of May (to be closer to school) and there's a big wall in the living room that is perfect for this quilt. This will be our 6th home in 10 years, so the houses quilt seems appropriate. 

Go here to see all the other completed March UFO's. I know my April UFO won't be done in time but I got 3 more fabrics ironed and cut yesterday so hopefully by mid May it will be finished. On Sunday, Judy picks the number for May - I'm not sure which number I'm hoping for.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

More Progress!

Finished the top on Thursday night. Lighting inside is terrible.

So, I took it outside and hung it on the line for a couple pictures.

I admit, I really love this quilt. The yellow fabric pops and I ended up using the hst's that I first made that were too small for the final border. Love it!

One problem... I need to quilt it and all my pins are in the Houses quilt and Glow Happy. I figure I had 3 choices. 1) wait and buy more pins. 2) take the pins out of the Houses quilt, use them and then put them back in the houses quilt (a lot of work) or 3) just finish quilting the Houses quilt!

I'm working on option 3. Got 3 houses quilted the other night. Took about an hour so I hope to finish it this weekend. Above is house #3.

House #6. It lined up everywhere except the bottom right of the door. Oops!

House #9.

I also ironed and cut 3 more fabrics for the Lantern Bloom quilt and made 4 more blocks (on the left) and parts of another block.

The last few weeks we have been pet-sitting a gecko. She went home last night. I made her this little friend - a ballerina gecko to keep her company. I might have to make some more of these for the shop.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

No TV Week Progress

Monday evening I made some progress on my secret project (the secret is what it is for, not who, so I can show pictures). Discovered that I had made 120 hst's, 2 inches too small. I was a little pissed since most of my fabric is limited (1 yard of the hand-dyed yellow and 2 yards each of the purple and green - and I don't think I can get anymore). So, my design had to change. I could have made my original design with a few minor adjustments, but as I made the blocks I didn't like the layout and decided to play around a bit. This is what I came up with. Just need to make 3 more blocks and add borders. The 120 hst's I made last week aren't going to go to waste though, they are going to become one of the borders.

Hopefully by this weekend, or early next week, I will be able to reveal why I am making this quilt. The finished size will be 56 inches square.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Quilt Show and My Monday Morning

This weekend, the local quilt guild had their annual quilt show (I'm a member but I've only been to one meeting and didn't submit a quilt . The kids and I walked down Sunday morning to take a look. The quilts were amazing but I didn't get too many pics since I also had to keep an eye on my son who was hopping around and touching the skinny beams that were holding the quilts up. Luckily we were each given a sheet to vote for our favourite large quilt, medium  quilt, small quilt and other. This kept my son a little busy, as he kept changing his mind and crossing out the numbers.

My son picked this quilt for his favourite large quilt. It is beautiful. (I didn't use flash on any of these pics but this one turned out pretty good). He wanted to sit by it and try to draw the whale on the back of his ballot. I took a picture instead.

One of a handful of antique quilts that were on display.


My son liked these circle quilts and asked me to take pictures of them.

My daughter's favourite large quilt.

This was right when you came in and after looking at all the quilts, I still really liked it so I voted for this one. My son wasn't very happy to pose for the picture. Oh well, at least he wasn't hopping.

What's a quilt show without vendors? I restrained myself to a few charm packs. I got 2 origins since they were a good price. I wasn't going to get the Central Park one but my daughter begged (just a little) so I bought it too.

Each kid got to pick a bag of buttons ($1 a bag) and I ended up getting 4 new pens. You write on fabric, iron over it and the ink disappears (I was thinking this would be great for embroidery). One might end up with my sister.

Today is the beginning of No TV week - in celebration of Earth Day - so I am hoping to get a lot of projects done. Or at least a lot of progress. I was able to pick up the 3 yards of white I needed for my secret project. Ironed and cut it this morning and sewed some yellow and white strips together. Hope to get these cut and pieced into blocks tonight.

Isn't the yellow lovely? It's hand-dyed and was given to me by a fellow Ann Arbor quilt guild member a couple years ago to thank me for being their librarian for 3 years. I've been waiting for just the right project and I think this is it.

I also ironed and cut the first 3 (of 14) fabrics for the Lantern Bloom quilt. I figure I will work on this in stages as I have so many other projects on the go right now. I was able to get 6 blocks pieced. Hope to iron and cut a few fabrics each day.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Friday Night Sew-In Results

 Last night was another Friday Night Sew-In.  I got a little bit done on a few projects. During the day I pin basted the Glow Happy and Houses Quilts, hoping I'd be able to get to one of them.

I started quilting the Houses Quilt after the kids went to bed. I sewed along the rows to outline each block and stippled the sky. I have selected about 5 different coloured threads to do the rest of the quilting, which I hope to finish this weekend.

Picture of the whole quilt. 

I also started a secret project last night. Ironed the above fabrics and made 120 hst's. Also cut some 2 1/2 inch strips from the yellow. Need to go buy some white today to finish the blocks. Hope to reveal this quilt by the end of the month.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Getting ready for Friday

 Finally quilted this baby quilt I made in March. Stitch-in-the-ditch around the blocks and then free-motion stippling.

 Green fabric for the border and the back. This picture was taken before it got washed (which happened yesterday). Now I am just waiting for some nice weather to take its picture and then it will be in the etsy shop.

Final fabric selection for my April UFO - Lantern Bloom. Backing for the houses quilt and the Glow Happy quilt are also ready. Need to quilt the houses quilt first and then I can get started on Lantern Bloom and quilting Glow Happy. Either way, I think I have enough to keep my busy for Friday Night Sew-In. Have you signed up yet? There's already over 120 signed up already!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I was a little busy yesterday

 I found my quilting mojo last night. I had cut all the pieces for "Glow Happy"over a week ago, (find pattern here), last night I finally got around to piecing most of it together.

Lantern blocks waiting to be pieced into rows.

I'm sure many of you might already do this, but to save myself a step down the road, before I trimmed off the corners of the main lantern blocks and the border pieces, I stitched a second line. Cut apart between the lines and  have a hst ready to go.

Here are my 48 blocks from the borders (bigger ones) and 100 from the lantern blocks. What am I going to do with them? Not sure yet... maybe my sister would like something?

My son enjoyed playing with them while I ironed the blocks this morning.

He spread them out and discarded the pink ones.

Final block. 

He even made a sketch to remember what the block is suppose to look like.

And 45 minutes after all the above pictures were taken...

... quilt top is pieced. A little bit of applique still needs to be done to complete the lanterns but I love this quilt! I will iron it before I quilt it (maybe for Friday Night sew-In this Friday?). I have 2 other quilts that need to be done first -including my house quilt from March's UFO challenge, so I guess I have some more work to do.

Monday, April 11, 2011

This blog is called "Rachel's Quilts", right?

I have barely touched the sewing machine this past week. My hands have been busy with yarn. I finally finished the second sock of this pair. I love them. I've already worn them twice and since they are in the washer right now, I guess I get to wear them tomorrow too.

Close-up of the beautiful sock. My husband doesn't like the little holes. Oh well. It was nice to do a pattern instead of a basic sock, but it takes longer and you really have to pay attention. Have already cast on my next pair which are for my sister-in-law. Going to be basic socks since her birthday is next month. 

I knew I couldn't stop at one circle pillow - especially when my son kept stealing it. So, I offered to make him one. He didn't want any yellow yarn used or buttons in the middle.

And yes, I made a third one. This one is for one of my niece's birthdays in June. I changed the design a little bit. I didn't really like the look of the decrease side so I made 2 "front" sides, single crocheted them together and added the ruffle edge. My kids picked a purple button for one side and a blue one for the other, but other than that the sides are the same.

Hopefully I will do more sewing this week since I only turned on the sewing machine last week to make the pillow forms for the above pillows. Maybe I need to consider changing the name of my blog to include my love of yarn and fabric. Any ideas?

And it's that time again... time for another Friday Night Sew-In. It's this Friday. So go sign up and join in on the fun.
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