Thursday, June 28, 2012

butterflies are everywhere

Here is an update on the butterfly quilt. I have all the fun butterflies finished now slogging through the background squares and the batting. Like almost all my quilts, this one is quilt as you go, so each block is completed including the quilting when the appliques are applied. Makes the quilt very fast and has a very beautiful backing.

At least it would be fast, but I have 5 kids at home this summer and usually  at least a couple of their friends hanging out here. At least the air conditioning is running because it's 95 degrees fahrenheit. That's hot!

I love this fabric-- It's Dr. Seuss really neat!

 Here's another favorite fabric:

 Here are the butterflies in progress:

Sunday, June 24, 2012

mixing and matching to catch a butterfly quilt

I've been hard at work planning my butterfly quilt. I've actually spent a lot more time planning this quilt than I thought I would initially. The biggest problem was that I had about 4 butterfly quilt possibilities fluttering around in my mind. I had the idea to make a traditional quilt like my parents have with blocks and borders and pastels. Then the cool modern butterfly idea with large prints in bold colors. Then the new modern 50's fabrics were an option. Then should it be a rag quilt or just an applique one?  I was having trouble deciding.

Finally, I had to tell myself I could make one of each but I had to do it one at a time or it would be a weird looking mix match of styles. I decided to make the bold butterfly quilt first. Even now I'm still fussing with the design. I made a pillow cover as a sample block to test the design, see if the ragging looked right.

Here is where I am now:

Friday, June 22, 2012

a little work and lots of play

You all are going to think all I do is play. In fact, I guess I play more than I think I do, less than I want to. That was a couple of confusing sentences.

The summary is, I was out of the sewing room on a family trip to Capon Springs, West Virginia, USA. My parents and my sisters and their kids and now the kid's kids have been going to this get away in the mountains for over 40 years! It has healing water from a deep spring, supposedly. I tend to get fat when I visit. It's probably the food, not the water. haha

Here is a photo of some of my kids and some cousins at the pool:

I did manage to squeeze in a bit of sewing on the return. I finished the heart throb quilt and pillow for the lovely lady. Here it is:

Now I plan on being virtuous all of next week, losing the 5 pounds I gained on vacation, a bit of exercise and lots of sewing. I'm starting a butterfly quilt because I have so much really cool fabric I want to mix together and see how it turns out.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

field trip with the girls

Took an afternoon off yesterday because the girls were getting bored and the weather was just too perfect to stay at home. We went to Wheaton Regional Park which is only a 40 minute car ride from our house. It has beautiful gardens, playgrounds, a carousel and train.

As always, part of my mind is seeing quilt ideas everywhere. Maybe a froggie quilt or a gnome or fairy quilt.  Flowers and trees constantly inspire me.  After we returned home, the evening was spent quilting (yes!) the heart quilt commission. Really, the day couldn't have been better :)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

mermaid sketch by Elizabeth

A wonderful day today but not productive at all. In the afternoon we went to the park and enjoyed the perfect summer weather, not too hot, not too cold. What do I have to show for the day in regards to my quilt passion?

My lovely daughter, Elizabeth, and I designed this mermaid quilt on a park bench in the shade while my littlest daughter, Evelyn, played on the swings. Close to heaven:)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

rainy last day of school and new heart commission

It's a rainy last day of school here in Maryland. I took my daughter, Rebecca, to get her drivers license learners permit. She passed the written exam! yippee:) Now comes my teeth gnashing, fingers clenched, hair turning grey as we speak first driving lesson with her behind the wheel. If I survive, I'll write about it. If you don't ever see another blog post, either we died in a fiery explosion or I'm committed somewhere for evaluation. lol

Good news-- I have been asked to make a baby quilt and pillow for a lovely expectant mom. Here is the pattern she requested:

Going to get started on it asap! G'day  (Is it okay to say that at the end of a conversation, or only at the beginning, Liz?)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Lush Flowers quilt is listed on Etsy

Here it is -- the blooming quilt is finished. I love the name Liz suggested for this quilt but I was already committed to Lush Flowers as the title.  The quilt turned out pretty good, with the addition of Jennifer Paganelli's Crazy Love fabric for the border, no quilt could look bad. Her fabric is amazing!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Inspector Gadget blog post

 Here is a copy of the blog post I just finished for my Etsy team, Quilts,Quilts,Quilts. I liked it so much and it took so much time to write, that I thought I would post it here, too.

I am writing a post today on my favorite quilt gadgets. I have to start with a pic of my favorite gadget of all time:
 Inspector Gadget has nothing to do with quilting but he always comes to mind when I think of gadgets, so I had to add him :)

I have a lot of quilt gadgets. In fact, I have a drawer full  of stuff that I've never or hardly ever used. I'm only going to share my favorite tools I use for almost every quilt I make.

My favorite kind of quilt to make is a rag quilt. I love the texture of the clipped edges and the way it surprises with the layers of colors in the seams. I love how fast they are to complete. They are only fast to clip, though, if you have the right gadget. I love these ergo-metric scissors. The small ones are perfect for rag clipping. I bought mine at Joanne fabrics.

 Another gadget I love is actually an accessory for your sewing machine. It  is a free-motion quilting or darning foot. You probably have one that came with your machine. What I love is to put this foot on, lower the feed dogs and then the skys the limit for what you can sew! You can make swirly loops, practice your cursive, attach appliques, draw with thread, and on and on.

 My last favorite gadget is actually more of a crutch. I seem to have no ability whatsoever to make a perfect square on my own. If I try to make a square with a ruler and measuring, forget it. It always turns out being some weird crooked diamond. So I have a collection of squares that are so easy to use and guarantee a perfect square every time. I have these fancy plastic grid squares and then the homemade cardboard ones. One day I'll probably have a square in every possible size for a quilt block.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

What's a great name for an over the top flower basket quilt?

Well, I guess I was in the mood for an explosion of color. Cause that's what I created. I kept hearing the words "sis boom" and here it is:

 So much fun to make-- now I'm rushing through to see how it turns out at the end. I'm not much of an 'enjoy the process' type person. Does anyone have any ideas for a name for this quilt?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Here's the kind of gardening I like to do...

My newest quilt design is in the works. The very best parts of quilting for me are the very beginning and the very end. Here is the very beginning of my flower quilt. I'm so happy!

This is the background and the vase. Now I get to fill it with flowers. The flower prints I'll be using are some really beautiful bright prints from one of my favorite designers, Jennifer Paganelli. The fabric is called Crazy Love. Tomorrow I should have some blooming for you to see.

Monday, June 4, 2012

an unexamined life part 2

Here's an update on the condition of my garden and my unexamined life. I thought about it some more and came to the conclusion that, although it was enlightening to realize that I didn't like gardening, I couldn't conclude that I should leave my garden in the state it was in.

Just because I don't enjoy the task at hand doesn't release me from the commitment already made to complete the task. In other words, suck it up, Jamie,  and weed and plant your garden. :)

Friday, June 1, 2012