Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Another Quilts for Boston Finish!

After being separated from my Juki for two weeks, I finally got it back from it's tuneup!  So I immediately wanted to quilt something.  I got backing all pieced together for one of my Christmas gift quilts, but when I was laying it out to baste, not only was I out of 505 Basting Spray (the greatest product ever! For real) I was also two inches short on my batting!  Arg.

Luckily, I had this one all basted and ready to go for after I finished off my gifts.  It got booted to the front of the line, and I got all my productive energy out on this one!

I definitely didn't want to go completely all out on this Boston quilt like I had the last one.  Because I have a lot of holiday quilting, I didn't want to burn myself out on this one or get too sore (that FMQ is a workout!).  I also just didn't think this quilt would look as good if I quilted it like the last one.  

So I decided on an all over wave pattern.  I just picked a spot to start in the center(ish), and worked my way across the quilt, aiming for about a half block down from my starting point.  The blocks don't completely line up since they were pieced in columns instead of rows, so I just sort of winged it.  Then I echoed the line all the way down, shooting for about a half inch to an inch between my lines.

(I know, washed out picture, but I love the texture!)
I really love this style of quilting, and will be adding it to my (growing) list of favorite patterns.  The lines are just as dense as the straight line quilts that I love, but the wave is so much more forgiving and fun to do.

And it brings all these blocks together really well.  They were pretty similar in shades, but the blocks were all so different, I had a bit of work making my mind up about how to quilt them.  I think it worked out!

Linking up with Blossom Heart Quilts for Sew Cute Tuesday!

  Sew Cute Tuesday

Friday, November 22, 2013

A Cozy Sock Finish!

I'm so excited to have finished up my first pair of socks!!  I had a little trouble deciding on what pattern to use, but finally settled on a really basic sock pattern, Socks by the Numbers from On The Needles. There's no need to get really fancy on your first pair, especially when the yarn stripes itself. 

I'm kind of in love with knitting socks now. They're pretty quick, but so comfy to wear!  And I can make them just how I want them, wide for my giant feet and calves, but not too tall. These are perfection. 

There will definitely be more of these in my future, and there's just enough yarn left to make a tiny pair for my daughter!

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish It Up Friday!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

WIP Wednesday!

So much happening around here, but I think I'm on the home stretch of my crazy crafting!  I finished my knit-for-gifts projects, so I'm starting my second sock!  Can't wait to wear these.  After this I've got a cardigan lined up for the little girl.

Here are the two tops I've got waiting for quilting.  I'm delaying these since my Juki is getting clean, but I should get that back this week so I can knock these out quick.  I've also got another Boston quilt ready to be quilted, but I may just do that on my little machine so I can get it done by the end of the week.

And then there's the Pinkie Pie quilt I posted about yesterday.  That's my fallback project when I get bored of doing the rest of my projects, because there's always squares to sew together!

And these knits are ready to be turned into a shirt (dress if I have enough of the gray) for me, and the bottom will be a couple pairs of Parsley pants for a friend's son.  Luckily, the knit pants sew fast since you don't have to worry about ironing or doing the flat fell seams.

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Pinkie Pie Progress!

This project started off kind of weird.  I fell in love with the Pinkie Pie quilt that Svetlana at S.O.T.A.K. Handmade made, and making one was something that was on my list of things I wanted to accomplish eventually, but I started mentioning it to people and suddenly it was happening.  I love having sewing friends that you can mention craziness to and they just jump in and help make it happen.

So, that up there is a cross stitch pattern for my daughter's favorite My Little Pony, Pinkie Pie.  She's kind of amazing, has an emergency stash of pirate eye patches, and owns a confetti canon.

I know, right?  Amazing!
We started raiding stashes for pink fabric, and did a run to Joann's for more pink fabric, because there's SO. MUCH. PINK!  And then we started cutting and piecing.  The squares are 1.5" and finish to 1", so it's going to be a generous twin size quilt.  
Here's a little taste of what we've go so far.  All the crossed off squares are done, so we're almost halfway there.

That's one whole leg!  I love how all the fabrics are playing nicely, and will hide every little stain.  It's for a toddler, stains are her forte.  

This week we'll finish up the tail and cutie mark and then it's just the head and hair!  We'll totally have it done for Christmas!

Sew Cute Tuesday

Friday, November 15, 2013

A Boston Quilt Finish!

Finished my Quilt for Boston!  I love getting these quilts because they're all ready to be quilted, and they're all different blocks.  The first one I did, I just quilted loops all over to get it done.

I had a little bit of a problem with this quilt.  I meant to just do a simple all over quilting pattern, but it just begged for something more awesome. And because I wanted to get it done for Friday (an entirely self-imposed deadline) that meant I needed to pull an all-day sew-a-thon!

I started around noon, and finished sewing the binding on at 1 a.m.  Then I hand stitched the binding down while dropping off the dude at school, during a playdate/lunch, and then while picking up the boy from school.  It was my own little sewing speed race.

This is the first block that I did.  So many little spaces for different designs!

I managed to use all the different spaces to practice some things I've never done before, like this pattern my friend Jess rocked in a quilt a while back.  I love all the wavy lines and the strings of pearls.  It really grew on me, and I may have to do this more and in bigger scale on another quilt.

Love this little goldfish.  He needed scales.

I LOVE doing those wavy, echoing lines.  They're so easy once you get the arm motion down, but they pack such a punch!

Here's another block with those wavy lines.  They're the best.  And the figure eights are another really easy, but beautiful pattern.  Love putting them in squares!

I loved this plus sign block.  I think I'm going to have to do a whole quilt of these, because I get a kick out of blocks that make designs when you put them all together.  See how the corner pieces will make more pluses?  Awesome.

And you may have noticed all the pebbles.  I kind of love the look, but hate quilting them because I don't think I'm really good at it yet.  My arms just don't move that way naturally.  So I decided to pebble all my backgrounds and teach myself some muscle memory!  Take that pebbles!  I win!

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish It Up Friday!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Late Night Quilting and Impossible Knitting

So I went to load the Boston quilt into my machine and do some easy and quick loops, and this was the first block to quilt. It just looked like it was asking for more than just loops!  So I ended up doing some crazy dense quilting, using all those different blocks to practice some patterns I don't quilt as often. 

I had a lot of fun and just didn't stop until the whole thing was quilted. (Thank goodness for caffeine and kids who don't mind watching tv all afternoon!). Today I'll get the binding sewn on and hopefully post it for Finish It Up Friday tomorrow. 

But before I get back to the sewing, I'm taking a break and working on this möbius cowl. It breaks my head, but is so fun. 

Linking up with Kelly for Needle and Thread Thursday!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

WIP Wednesday!

So what am I up to on this WIP Wednesday?  Productivity!  Boo-Yeah!

I think the reality of the Christmas countdown really set in, and now I'm just churning out projects like there's no tomorrow!  My goal for the day is to get this quilt finished.  It's one of two Quilts for Boston that I've been pretty lazy about finishing because there's no solid deadline, but I'm going to get them off my stack!

There's also the last bit of knitting to get done before Thanksgiving, and I think I might be able to get that off my needles in the next few days!  Pictures after I give the gifts!

And I splurged (really, $3, woo!) and finally got a loop turner!  I was buying a pile of fabric to turn into pants and saw this next to the elastic.  There's really no excuse for not getting one until now, but I'm pretty excited to never have to fish 1/4" elastic through a waistband with a safety pin ever again!

Linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A Super Productive Long Weekend!

Finally, just got down to it and got some stuff done over the long weekend!  There's just been a bunch of little things piling up, but I finally started crossing things off.

Like these little snack bags for a friend.  They don't take long, but they just kept getting pushed to the back of my mind.  So I decided to take an afternoon and just do it.

They're two different tutorials.  The ones that lie flat are from this tutorial from Owen's Olivia.  And the stand up ones are from a tutorial at Mauby's.  We use both constantly, so I'm sure they'll get plenty of use.

And I got to use one of my favorite fabrics.  It's from Robert Kaufman.  I love it, but it just never seems like the right project for it, but this is perfect.  I might end up making a few more for myself.

After the bags were so quick and checked of the list, I then finished another gift quilt top, made pants for a friend's kid, tidied the area I've taken over with my sewing in the dining room, and cast on some socks.

Why knit socks?  Because I don't know how.  Can't wait to get these done because they're super warm and I keep trying this one on and loving it.

Here's hoping that the rest of the week is just as productive!

Linking up with Blossom Heart Quilts for Sew Cute Tuesday!

Sew Cute Tuesday

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Another Multi-Tasker Tote!

Finally delivered this bag to a friend who was in desperate need of a new diaper bag.  (I also totally forgot to take pictures of it until I was outside her apartment.  Yay! for camera phones!)  I've had it finished for a while, but I was hung up on a few tweaks to the pattern, and had to stare at the bag for a while while I figured out what to do.

I, of course, used the Multi-Tasker Tote pattern, because it's awesome, and added a couple elastic pockets to the inside.  I switched out the interfacing for fusible fleece because it stands up so much nicer, but isn't super stiff, and outlined the butterflies and flowers in gold thread.

The big tweak was that purple pouch inside.  She wanted a place to pack an extra set of clothes, but she wanted it to be removable.  It seems obvious now to just add a couple buttons to the bag lining and buttonholes to a velcro pouch, but I had too many ideas at first and couldn't settle.  So I just made the whole bag and left it to the end.

My favorite part is the key chain.  I found clip hardware at Joann's and now have to add the strap to every bag I've ever made.

Linking up with Kelly for Needle and Thread Thursday!

  My Quilt Infatuation

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

WIP Wednesday!

So here's the big project that I'm working on right now.  Cutting and piecing these 1.5" squares for the Pinkie Pie Pixel Quilt.  Right now it's more cutting than piecing, because there's a ridiculous amount of cutting involved.  This bit is from last night, there's probably around 500 squares here?  I'm totally guessing because we stopped counting.

And this is just the pinks.  I probably cut just as many white squares as well.  Completely insane, but so much fun to put together!  It's going to be an awesome quilt.

And I finally pulled my fabric for the Penny Patch Quilt-a-long.  I'm supposed to be into the sewing stage already, but I'm just chugging along at my own speed.  The teal and yellow are my main colors, and the plums are my pop of color.  I love that top plum fabric, so I'm glad that I finally get to use it.

I'm hoping to get these cut soon, because the piecing is super easy, and would be nice brainless work to do one evening with a cup of cocoa.

And this last bunch of fabric I'm just staring at right now.  It's a scrap bundle I got at our Guild's auction over the weekend from Laura (she blogs over at Little and Lots, and has the best fabric!), and I should just dump it into the scrap bin, but I love how it's already in a rainbow.  I might add more to the mix and do a simple patchwork with it.

Linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday!!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The System is Down

 Computer has decided to take a day off, so instead of blogging, I'll be sewing today. Be back soon!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Finished Hats and an Invisible Quilt Finish!

So, it's Friday, and I have a finish to share!  But it's a gift, so I can't really show a finished picture of it, but it's so awesome.  I'll have lots of pictures after the holidays wrap up.  I'm pretty excited about so many handmade gifts this year.  

Instead of quilt pictures, I'll show you some of my knitting finishes for the week.  That bucket of yarn I pulled on Wednesday has become three hats.  The first is this one for the little girl, the kitty hat!  It was super easy to make, just a tube with some rib knit at the bottom.  No increases, or decreases, so no chance of getting weird cone-head hats, and since I've never made hats, that was a big fear of mine.  Who wants to bind off, then realize your kid looks like a Smurf.

The ears are the best part of it.  I just did a kitchener stitch across the top to bind off, and then did some whip stitch along the bottom of the ears on the inside of the hat.  And the yarn is a super soft baby alpaca and acrylic blend, lucky girl.  

This one is for her brother.  He went to school before I could get a good picture of him in it, so she'll model it for him.  Of course, she's modelling under protest, because it's not purple or cat shaped.  

This is the Chunky Dean Street Pattern that I showed you on the needles yesterday.  It's a really fast knit, and those cables are just right front crosses (not real cables), so you don't have to stop and whip out your cable needle every couple stitches.  I was a little worried about the decreases because I only had a circular needle to work with, but it seems to have worked fine.  I used Wool-Ease, so it's super warm and has plenty of stretch, so he'll be able to wear this at least two winters!

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish It Up Friday!