Thursday, October 28, 2010

Schnibbles and bits

I missed out on the outrageously fun Year of Schnibbles so I'm making up for it by participating in La Petite a year of small projects. Our first assignment was the new Schnibble pattern Paganini. I chose the first variation. Enter, the HSTs.

The thing is, you can hate them all you want but they're a necessary evil. I used to twitch and go all foamy at the mouth when I thought about having to make half square triangles. And then I realized what my issue was. I started cutting my squares way bigger than they should be, turned the steam off on my iron, and used the bejeebers out of some spray starch (I make my own, it's awesome! Cheap and smells just like I want.) and all was right with the world. Sometimes they still came out a little wonky but because of the increased initial size I just trimmed them down.

One of the things I appreciate most about Carrie Nelson's patterns is that she seems to embrace the notion of go-big-then-trim.

I welcome that. Here's my pile of trimmings after I finished the HSTs in the Paganini blocks. What's that you say? You'd like to see the wide shot? Of COURSE you would. Because you're a reader of style and class, you care about these things.

Here you go:

Rotary cutters, rotating mats, piles of trimmings, reruns of Top Gear. These are a few of my favorite things.

I'm not 100% sure about the outcome:

It's not hollering at me. I think if I'd had another charm pack I might have done one just out of the blues and green in this collection and that would have really done it. But the pattern was super fun and I'm going to do some of the other variations for sure. This one needs the rows sewn together (put the blocks in rows this morning) and then needs a border on. I may never quilt it, but I'll get it done enough to make the deadline!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Falling in Love Again

I finally got back down in to the sewing room for a good long while and got some actual work done. Nothing is 100% finished but I'm so happy with the work that *is* finished.

With Friday night and Saturday to myself I started off with a good tidy. I didn't get everything I wanted done but I got a good chunk. Some reorganization done on the shelves, more fabric folding, and some time getting the UFOs put in to boxes and labeled. I have an obscene amount of fabric coming in the next few days and I wanted to make sure it had a place to live. Then I got sewing.

I finished piecing an Irish Chain from a charm pack of Blush and it will be the perfect snuggly lap throw. It needs a containment border and then a nice big white border so I can put the last four 9-patches in the corners. I think I will proabably just do a nice fun meander quilting stitch. It'll be a picnic quilt so it doesn't need anything fancy. Containment border fabric is due on Wednesday or thereabouts so perhaps I can be quilting on it next weekend.

Then I looked at my boxes of unfinished projects and dove for the easiest one. A simple brick with white sashing. I fell completely in love with the California Dreamin' line from Jenean Morrison and I wanted a big block piecing that would let the pattern really show off. This setting is just the thing. It still needs the outside border on it but for that I need to get more white muslin. This will probably be my first experiment with straight-line quilting. Wish me luck!

No place in the house is big enough to lay this out (except the beds, and I couldn't be arsed to clean the beds off) so I dragged it outside on to the lawn and I think the sunlight really made it since the big medallions in some of the prints look like sunbursts.

Now I'm on to my own version of Vickie's Hello Yellow made out of Riley Blake's Bloom and Grow. I got the fat quarter set at Lancaster. Vickie is a godsend with this pattern. I've been looking high and low for something that was modern enough to work with the fabrics but still fun and not too severe. Yay! Plus I've been dying to make a tumbler quilt but it never occurred to me to use my Dresden ruler. Huge fun. The pieces are all cut and now I'm slapping them up on the design wall to see how it looks best.

So what's coming in the mail? An absolute ton of Fig Tree Quilts fabrics. I've always appreciated the soft vintage colors but something about fall just makes me want to curl up in Breakfast at Tiffany's and a good book. However, with a birthday coming up I'm holding off on buying Breakfast at Tiffany's until I see if any family members are looking for suggestions. *wink wink* Thankfully the fantastic Kimberly at Fat Quarter Shop has been good enough to make it easy on us (or possibly hard on us because omg how do you pick!?) with lots of precuts.

While I wait, I got jelly rolls of Patisserie and Fresh Cottons last week and finally got the courage to cut in to my Gypsy Rose layer cake. I picked up some yardage from Fig and Plum on sale and I so completely fell in love with the colors that I ordered a whole bunch more. I have patterns of hers also coming and it's going to be gorgeous. I can't wait! Thank you, Joanna for the gorgeous and inspirational fabrics!

I also have some Bliss coming in, a wonderful half yard bundle of reds and blues that I want to roll around in before I make it into something. I've got some Sanibel by Heather Mulder Peterson coming as well and I'm not sure what that's going to be yet but whatever it is will be fun and probably a little old fashioned. I read my way through ALL of the archives of Nicole over at Sister's Choice Quilts and it really put me in the mood to make some more traditional quilts. I'm falling in love with this hobby all over again.

Anyway. Back in to the basement!