Friday, November 30, 2012

Mountains Managed Quilt

You might remember seeing this quilt in my last post, as it was one of the three that I submitted to the QuiltCon Quilt Show.  I've named it Mountains Managed.

I sort of feel like this quilt was a perfect marriage of inspiration and opportunity. 

Some time ago, I had come across the below illustration on Pinterest.  I don't know the original creator; but have linked the image to it's first appearance.  Thanks to MarJay, she found the original creator...check this out.  While the shape was simple in nature, it had an interesting look about it and I pinned it stating "wants to be a quilt".

Now about the same time, I had heard about the Dear Stella "Maasai Mara" challenge.  The rules were pretty simple, you could only use prints from the "Maasai Mara" collection; but could combine solids from other companies.  I was always a little intrigued by the collection; but didn't have any in my stash, so I hoped over to SewMamaSew! at the time and picked up 3/8 yds of several prints that I liked. 

When the fabric arrived, I pulled out my RK Kona Color Card and picked out a handful of solids that matched.  It was trial and error of course; but eventually I settled on Cactus, Marine and Ash.

I wouldn't even know how to try and explain how to piece this quilt.  I had no plan and actually it took me 2/3rds of the quilt before I figured out a proper method of piecing.  Yet, I think that is what made it interesting. 

I started by cutting out random triangular shapes and then adding strips of solid to either side.  When it was time to add another triangle, I cut into the neighboring solid as needed.  It worked great for the first strip; but became a challenge when I had triangles going both up and down.  

Eventually, I figured something out (trial and error) and the last 2 rows were a breeze to put together.  I decided on vertical quilting, 1" apart as I didn't want to interrupt the bold horizontal blocks of color.

The back was pieced from the leftover fabric, along with scoring 1.5 yds of one print on super sale at Fat Quarter Shop.  I decided to bind the quilt in the same Marine blue; which helped to define the bold blocks of color.

Quilt Name:   Mountains Managed
Prints Used:   Several from Maasai Mara (Dear Stella)
Solids Used:   Kona colors Cactus, Marine and Ash (Robert Kaufman)
Finished Size:  44" x 72"
Started/Finished:  Nov 20th, 2012 / Nov 29th, 2012

QuiltCon Quilt Show

By now you've heard of QuiltCon, the first inaugural Quilting Conference by, for, and about Modern Quilting.

The wonderful Modern Quilt Guild folks are hosting a Quilt Show in collaboration with the conference and all entries are due Today, November 30th at Midnight CST. 

While making a quilt in a week and a half isn't necessarily how I like to operate, it is unfortunately how several of my quilts have been made in the past.  The good news is that I only had 1 quilt to make for this submittal, the others were ones that had been completed long ago.

So, wanna know what I submitted?

Mountains Managed
This was completed Nov' 2012, blogged here.

Chocolate Covered Strawberries
This was completed in Feb' 2012, blogged here.

Confetti Amongst Friends
This was completed in July 2012, blogged here.
For those who submitted quilts to this event and know the photography rules, don't worry...these aren't the actual photos submitted :-)
There is lots of pretty stiff competition out there, so it would be an absolute honor to be included amongst the ranks...Fingers Crossed!!!
So, did you submit anything?

Thursday, November 29, 2012

UN-Traditional Black Friday Shopping

My Sister and I went out on Black Friday as millions of others did; but we took an untraditional approach and honestly we both agreed that we really enjoyed this "new tradition" instead. 

We said NO to places like Target, Walmart and the Mall...rather heading to smaller and more unique venues instead. 

First stop...a local antique mall.

For those who have been following me for a while, you certainly know my love of antiques.  Usually it's furniture that finds its way into my home; but once in a while I'll come across something that is much smaller and certainly easier to take home. 

Can you imagine my glee when I came across this piece of sewing history for only $25? 

It's a New Home Sewing Machine; which a little follow-up research has dated between 1900-1910.  This tredle machine was sitting in an inconspicous booth with an original price of $80; but the booth's owner certainly hadn't seen any movement on it, so they marked it down to $25.  SCORE!
Now, what I bought was just the cast iron machine in all it's unleveled glory.  It would have originally been housed in a sewing cabinet/table; but clearly that was no where to be found.  As I had wanted to display this antique, I asked my Dad if he wouldn't mind constructing a small box which the machine could sit down in and a few short hours later he created the above box, stained and everything.

What I love about this machine is the exquisite ornamentated motifs covering nearly the entire surface.  While it does have wear and tear (read: over 100 years old), it's amazing how crisp the designs still are. 

This machine was made in the good ol' USA, Orange Mass. to be specific.  While the New Home company is no longer around, I'm glad to own this little piece of sewing history. 

Second stop...Rock & Roll Craft Show 9.

For those unfamiliar with the Rock & Roll Craft Show, I highly recommend that you check out their blog, facebook page, etc.  This event was held at the Third Degree Glass Factory; which is a wonderful place all its own. 

So what exactly is the RRCS?  Just as the poster above says, it's an Alternative Craft Show and Music Event.  The entire venue was filled with art/craft of all varieties from tons of local artists.  I dare you to walk out of there without having bought something, if not a handful of things. 
There was Jewelry, Christmas ornaments, Home Decor, Totes and Wallets, Kitchen items, Clothing, Paintings, Pottery, etc, etc, etc.  If you love Etsy, you'll love this show. 
There is a cover charge to get into the event; which was $3 on Saturday and Sunday; but if you wanted VIP access (first day access and a giftbag with goodies), the charge was $10 a head.  It was worth it! 
While my Sister and I hadn't planned to stand in a line on Black Friday as we were going the un-traditional route.  We actually didn't mind standing in line to get into this event.  I for one was really excited to see that there WAS a line.  Art/Craft Power!!! 

Both my Sister and I picked up a few things for Holiday gifts, so I can't show you what I bought; but I LOVE that they included these tags in the giftbag.
I hope your Holiday festivities have kicked off to a great start and while we will all go to Big-Box stores at least once this season.  I do hope that you will certainly take the time to check out smaller opportunities like your local independent retailers too.  

Monday, November 26, 2012

Christmas Tutorial Freebie - GiftCard Holder

Just a quick little post to let you know about a freebie tutorial that I recently
We all could use a few GiftCard Holders, especially this time of year. 
Why don't you head on over and check it out on their blog, SewTimeless.

As you can see, I really enjoyed making these and ended up with a nice little handful of them.

It's perfect for the holidays or for anytime of year really.
P.S.  I'll have another tutorial up later in the week too :-)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving, Black Friday & Fun Stuff

I'm looking forward to this coming 4-Day Holiday Weekend, more then you realize.  Let's just say a 16 hour work-day Monday got the week started off right :-(

Obviously it all starts with Thanksgiving.  I'm in charge of the Pumpkin Pie and the supplies have been bought, said pie will be made Thursday morning.  The "ironic" part is that I don't even eat Pumpkin Pie, nor do I eat a majority of the things that I bake including Pineapple Upside Down Cake, Lemon Meringue Pie, Pudding Pie, etc.  It's a good thing that I have a Family which does, otherwise my Baking would tend to go to waste.

Now, let's get something clear.  I'm NOT one of those crazy Black Friday shoppers.  While I have for many years ventured out, it's not for the reasons you think.  Only once did I ever get up at 4am and that was to hang out with my Sister in line, who was eyeing something on Super-Sale that she had been saving for months to buy.  The rest of the time was just to get in the Holiday Spirit and by that I mean being surrounded by the cheesy Holiday Decorations, and who can forget the random Holiday Classics coming through the speakers and sometimes...yes, sometimes if you pay close enough attention the day can bring out kindness in Strangers too.  All of it just gives me goose-bumps :-)

Do you know about Small-Business Saturday?  If you are one of the millions planning on dropping some dough this weekend, let's not forget all of the Small-Businesses out there.

Don't know what Small-Business Saturday is all about, check out this video to learn more.


Sewing-wise, I do have alot to finish and some approaching deadlines.  Here's a few things on the good-ol' To Do List. 


  • How about a little Dear Stella, Maasai Mara fabric.  I don't have a fancy Design Wall, so the floor tends to hold my in-process projects.  I'm entering this one in the QuiltCon Quilt Show IF the rest of the fabric I ordered comes in and IF I'm able to finish it in time. 

Finally, do you ever hear one of those songs that just makes you happy no matter what's going on.  Well, thanks to a trial of XM Radio, I found an artist by the name of Gin Wigmore.  This song has been on constant repeat on my drive to work every morning.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Paper-Pieced Pillow - Done

Some time ago I signed up to participate in the 9th round of Pillow Talk Swap, one of my favorite swaps on Flickr. This will be the 4th time that I've participated and I love it because...well, who wouldn't love an awesome pillow for their place. 

This go around I tried a little (scratch-that) ALOT of Paper Piecing, courtesy of this book which I checked out from my local library.  Don't you just love the library.

If you like paper-piecing and paper-pieced stars, I highly recommend this book. 

Now, onto what I made.

It all started with this.  This "set" was a pain as it was the first;
but it got smoother and faster as I went along.

After I completed 4 sets, this is what I had. 
I was glad that I stuck with it.

This is the back of the pillow "front". 
It's a bad photo overall; but does show the quilting
And here is the finished pillow

This will be mailed off to it's new owner this week :-)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

How is it November 8th?

I don't like this. 
No, not one bit. 
Someone please tell me how it is November 8th already?

All I can think about is how many days there are until the end of the year...ugh! and how much that is still on my To-Do List. 
I thought I would share a quick photo I took 2 weeks ago of the table that is in my studio.  Would you believe that there are the fixings for 4 different quilts sitting on that table.  That's on top of the various projects including 2 handbags, and 1 X-mas tutorial.   The good news is that at least one thing has been finished and removed from said table :-)

Rachel from Stitched in Color asked if I would take over one of the unfinished quilts for the Trust Circle of do.Good.Stitches.  I was honored to put together the arrow blocks, even if it meant putting everything else on hold.  Good causes always trump everything else :-)

I did have one other quick finish; which coincidentally was also for do.Good.Stitches.

Melissa (CraftyMamaD on Flickr) asked our group to make 2 wonky log cabin blocks using green, blue, orange and white.  I pulled out a novelty print for the center and then built two fun blocks around them. 

I finished my pillow for the Pillow Talk Swap; but since it's after 9pm...taking decent photos is out of the question.  I'll save that for this weekend.

Now, if you'll excuse me...I better get back to that table.

Friday, November 2, 2012

INDEX Quilt Pattern Winner

Thank you to everyone who left me a comment on my initial giveaway post. 
I appreciate all the feedback that I've been receiving too...keep it coming.
Now, onto the WINNER of the PDF copy of my INDEX Quilt Pattern
Random Generator chose #24

Congratulations, Becky !
I'll be sending you an email momentarily.
Now, if you'd like to pick up a PDF or Paper copy of INDEX, head on over to my Etsy shop.

Blog Hop nearing it's end

Today is the final day for my INDEX Quilt Pattern Blog Hop. 

I certainly could not have done this without the help of all of the
wonderful Pattern Testers and willing BlogHop Hosts.
Make sure that you hop on over to their blog if you haven't already done so, each of them is offering an opportunity for you to win a PDF copy of INDEX.
Sunday 10/28 -- Kristy Daum

Monday 10/29 -- Annie , Andi

Tuesday 10/30 -- Shelly , Nancy

Wednesday 10/31 -- Halloween

Thursday 11/1 -- Beth , Jess

Friday 11/2 -- Sara , Jacey
You have until today (Friday) at 9pm CST to get in on my particular giveaway. 
Some of the others hosts are running theirs into next week.
Good Luck!!