2016 APQ UFO Challenge List

Monday, April 30, 2012

Design Wall Monday

I didn't have anything to share for the stash report yesterday as I had no change in fabric in or out last week. I am working on a few things today, so should have something for next week. I did have a great weekend when it came to finishes though, so I thought I would share a few of those in a design wall Monday post. 
First up was completion of my firecracker pillow that I started on retreat in March. I had trouble with the metallic thread and had to get a metallic needle from my mom. It sat in my sewing room patiently waiting for me for about three weeks, and I finally got going on it this week. The pattern has you back the applique with freezer paper, and I forgot to take mine out before quilting it, so not only does it look like a firecracker, but the pillow crinkles too ;)
Next up was getting two snowman blocks made since I didn't finish one in March. I still need to do the detail stitching on them, but the fusing is done. I might get these finished up today...if not, I will put them by the couch and work on them as I watch tv at night. 
Third on the list is doing a little quilting on the donation quilts made by the group at retreat. I loaded the first one Friday and quilted it on it Saturday, then loaded and quilted the second on Sunday. I have them both in my room to bind, so am hoping to get them done this week. There is one more to finish, but it hasn't come back to me yet. 

I also have a partial quilt top on my design wall, but it is a gift for someone who reads my blog from time to time, so it will have to stay under wraps for now. 

So, all in all, I had a really good week and got several things done that I wanted to finish. The big activity over the next few weeks will be moving from my 2nd story sewing room to the basement. That should keep me pretty busy for a while!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Snowmen for Susan

Last weekend, my mom brought me a rush job (and by job, I mean quilting for the joy of it and in exchange for childcare!). It is the project she started at retreat - an appliqué snowman quilt for my sister in law.

She wanted a custom quilt job, meaning different thing in each border and the blocks - yikes! I am least confident with this type of request, far preferring pantos or all over designs, but I also know that this is what I need to do to stretch myself. I was able to visualize what I wanted to do on all but the outermost border....which is where I needed to start.

I finally flipped through my Leah Day book and decided to go with the Trailing spirals design. I started at the top and worked my way down until I got to the top set of blocks, then started on them. I put on my micro handles and really enjoyed the control they gave me, not just within the blocks, but across all the borders. I wound up using them for the rest of the quilt.

I was fairly pleased with it by the end and really happy that I didn't have any tucks (I rolled back and forth a lot!). I got it back to my mom on Monday morning and she was able to bind it and take it with her this week and give it to Susan, who says she is going to hang it up all year!

Next up on the machine is the first of the charity quilts - I am hoping to get it finished this weekend - fingers crossed.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Stash Report - Week 16 2012

It is really nice to have a week where I am rocking the stash report! I got my stuff in gear earlier this week and counted borders, made two backings, and cut borders for another quilt, so I used lots of fabric! I almost made up for it yesterday when my mom and I went to a garage sale of a fabric rep (she had fantastic prices on bundles of fabric), but I was able to resist, mostly because I didn't want it to show up on my report! 

Here are the results from this week: 
Fabric added this week: 0 yards
Fabric used this week: 7 3/8 yards

Fabric added year to date: 14 5/8 yards
Fabric used year to date: 25 yards

Net fabric used: 9 5/8 yards

It is nice to be a little more into the black! Hope you had a great week with your stash. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Quilt Show Purchases

Just a quick post this evening to share what I bought at the quilt show this weekend. There was, as divulged earlier, one fat quarter of fabric. That isn't in the picture since it a birthday present for Debbie in my bee. 

So, since I was trying to avoid buying fabric, I went for all the loopholes instead ;)
There are five different kinds of thread, most of which I will try on my HQ. One thimble, two packages of needles, a cute little needle storage case, a project back, some stabilizer for purses and a new purse pattern round out the purchases. There were many more things I could have bought, but then I would think of all the things that I have at home to work on, and I remembered that I will see a ton more new things next year :)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Stash and Show Report

Just a quick report on the stash and the show. I was lucky enough to be able to drive over to Cincinnati on Friday night and spend the night at Jill's. We went to the show (Quilt Festival in Cincinnati) together on Saturday and had a great time. There was a big poster board at the entrance with new rules about what you can and can't post on your blog from a picture perspective, so I am just going to show a few here that don't show too many quilts. 
Jill and me hamming it up at the entrance

Jill and her quilt Fade to Red
 It was so fun to see Jill's quilt hanging in the show! I embarrassed her several times as we walked around, especially when we were near the exhibit with her quilt! 

The Twelve by Twelve Exhibit
 Probably the most enjoyable part of this show for me was seeing quilts that I have followed on blogs I read. I really, really enjoyed the Twelve by Twelve exhibit, as well as seeing quilts in person from Laura Wasilowski and Susan Brubaker Knapp

The show seemed bigger this year, and it was definitely laid out better. Despite the larger size, I came home with only one fat quarter, which will go out the door in a few weeks for a bee friend's birthday. I did have a good time buying thread though! I will try to get a picture of all my purchases tomorrow, because I am too lazy to go up and do it now!
Shops and quilts in the distance
Other side of the catwalk - all vendors!

I am so glad that I decided to go over to the show and really enjoyed it. As usual, I come home from a show totally inspired, but also totally tired! I am hoping to get a few things in the works this week so that I can make some kind of progress on my April goals. 

And a quick stash report so I don't fall too far behind: 
Fabric added this week: 1/4 yard
Fabric used this week: 0 yards
Fabric added year to date: 14 5/8 yards
Fabric used year to date: 17 5/8 yards

Net fabric used: 2 1/4 yards

Hope you had a great week with your stash! Let me know if you attended the show too, and what your favorite part was or the best purchase you made. If you didn't attend this show, what is the next one you'll go to? 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Sunflowers from Sisters

I am so happy to share a project that has been in my stash for almost 4 years and is now done! I purchased a kit at the quilt shop in Sisters, Oregon when my mom and I went to see the show there in 2008
I am so glad I waited to make this project! It involved templates, applique (which I did by machine), satin stitching, beading, two rounds of quilting, and final assembly. I think if I had actually started it in 2008, it would be in my UFO pile right now! I also think that having it as a challenge project made me power through and get it finished sooner rather than later. 

I learned a lot while doing this project - mostly about my Janome and free motion quilting. I had a few tension issues with the sunflowers, but got them resolved when I changed the bobbin thread. I was having issues with pokies on the top and the only way to resolve them was to loosen the tension to the point where it looked bad on the back. I am not sure what made me do it, but about 1/2 way through, I changed the bobbin thread to bottom line (by Superior Threads). It was wonderful!!! I was able to get the best tension I've ever had on my 6600! Once I got that issue solved, I was actually looking forward to getting it all quilted. 

I also learned a little about following instructions on this one. There were a few places in the pattern where I was seriously questioning the instructions, but I just went with them...and guess what? It all worked out the way it was supposed to! 
I assembled the final pieces last night. And I love it. 

March in Review

March was a really great month - sewing and weather both cooperated and I was able to balance the time between the two. I had 43 1/2 hours of sewing this month, 25 1/2 of which was at retreat. I started the month prepping for retreat and finished the month by getting a couple projects to the finish line (or really close). Here's what I completed in March: 
- 2 Halloween table runners at retreat
- Charity top (made with fabric from all the retreat attendees and assembled with Kathy)
- Pieced, quilted, and bound Lovely Jacks wallhanging

I also made lots of progress on my red and white snowballs and my sunflowers quilt. I didn't get a snowman block made, so I will catch up this month by making two.  

In April, my goals are to: 
- Finish the sunflowers quilt
- Make 2 snowman blocks
- Make backs for and quilt three charity tops
- Finish firecracker pillow
- Start on my Q2 PIG - Wonky Trees wall quilt

I am also going to be heading to Cincinnati this weekend for a quick overnight to see the International Quilt Festival Show (yippee!). This week is a busy one for me, so most of the quilting will have to come later in the month. 

Hope March was good for you and hope you're enjoying the warm weather so early in the spring. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

Lovely Jacks

About a year ago, a new Schnibbles pattern was released called "Jacks." I liked it from the first time I saw it and thought I might make a wall quilt for my Jack. That hasn't happened yet, but I did get one made for our family room. I decided shortly before retreat that I wanted to make a new wall quilt for the wall above our couch - I had two that I rotated - one Valentine's and one for the rest of the year. I really wanted a few more choices for that wall. I prepped my kit and took it to retreat, where I got the whole top done in a day (why we retreat, part 2 -- this quilt would have taken me weeks to put together if I'd done it in the evenings and weekends at home). 

I want to tell you about my favorite new tool that I used in the construction of this quilt to speed things up. It is a vinyl cling that you put on the top of your machine bed that helps you feed in pieces that need to be sewn on a diagonal - think half square triangles, flying geese, etc. I bought it several months ago and hadn't taken the time to pull it out and use it, but I thought retreat would be a great opportunity. I did some other work with it first, then used it for all the pieces in the middle of this top. It took a little practice to be even, but I love it! The nicest part is that it is easy to pull up when you run out of bobbin thread, and then it goes right back into place. Here's a picture of what it looks like - you can either find it at your local quilt shop or at New Leaf Stitches. I paid $10 for mine and it was worth every penny just for this project. I plan to use it a lot more in the future!  

As soon as I got home, I found some good fabric for the back and loaded it on the frame. I quilted it with a stipple all over and used Isacord thread in the top and bottom line in the bobbin. It was a great combination and sits really nicely on the quilt. 
Over the past couple days I have stitched down the binding. Just need to stitch down the hanging sleeve and it will be ready to brighten my family room! It has been named "Lovely Jacks" to represent both the name of the pattern and the fabric line used in the top. 

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Stash Report - Weeks 12 & 13 2012

The last two weeks have seen me get close to finishes on two projects. They could have easily fallen into the UFO pile if it weren't for my stubborn determination not to add anything else to that pile! 

The sunflowers quilt is quilted and in assembly phase - you quilt the sunflowers separate from the background, so now I am working on binding the sunflowers so that I can attach them to the background, which is already quilted. I am hoping to have a picture of that to show no later than next Monday. 

My bright wall hanging that I put together on retreat made it onto my frame this week and I got it loaded and quilted all in one day. It is now trimmed up with binding attached by machine, so I am hand sewing on that one. I even remembered to add the hanging sleeve when I put the binding on, so I only have to sew down one side of the hanging sleeve. I hope to have that one done (at least for pictures - still need to label it) tomorrow, and will post a picture when I have a chance. 

Both projects were good for my stash report :)

Fabric added last 2 weeks: 0 yards
Fabric used last 2 weeks: 2 1/4 yards

Fabric added year to date: 14 3/8 yards
Fabric used year to date: 17 5/8 yards

Net fabric used: 2 1/2 yards 

It sure feels good to be moving in the right direction! Hope you had a great week with your stash.