Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Construction Phase Is Now Complete

 The sawdust has finally settled around here and construction is now complete on my Full House quilt!  This one was so much fun to put together.  I used the brand new Reunion fabric line by Sweetwater and it ended up being quite a whimsical neighborhood. The fabrics in this collection were so much fun to put into this versatile and addicting pattern created by Carrie Nelson. I just didn't want to stop making houses!  And I never really considered myself a house quilt person.....until now!  My favorite prints from the Reunion line are the different years and the bright red Xs.  How can you not love such cheerful fabrics?

I couldn't stop making houses or watching sitcoms!

I mentioned in a previous post that I took Carrie's suggestion and used the Fit to be Geese ruler to construct the roofs.  Quilters have been posting recently about their favorite quilting tools, and I have to say that this ruler is one of my favorite quilting gadgets!  Making a flock of geese was something I would avoid like soccer boy laundry until I was introduced to this amazing ruler last year.  Have you tried it yet?  Making the unit a little larger than necessary and trimming it up with this easy to use ruler yields perfect flying geese.   

There are plenty more neighborhoods to see, so be sure to head over and visit Sherri and Sinta in the next few days to see the entire community in the first Schnibbles parade of the year! Thank you so much ladies for planning another year of fabulous quilt parades and fun! 

Monday, January 23, 2012


Recently I've been working on catching up on my quilting.  I've got lots of quilt tops around that are ready to be quilted.  I've even picked out binding and backing for many of them too! After getting some technical difficulties with my machine worked out and doing more research about using a quilt frame, I'm getting some of these completed! 
Swirling snow around my Prairie Point Christmas Tree
designed by Cara Wilson found on Moda Bake Shop.

Watching longarm quilting DVDs and looking at lots of quilting designs has gotten me inspired to get going on these tops. No to mention, to justify making some more quilt tops I should probably finish the ones I have! Problems with my machine and learning to use my new frame held me back from quilting for awhile. This is supposed to be fun isn't it? Have you ever run into a quilting road block? Or maybe even a few? I'm happy to say I think I've pushed past mine and I'm ready to continue. Now my quilting spirit is renewed and I'm ready to go!

I quilted flowers in the large border, an X pattern in the brown border, and swirls and wavy lines in the background for snow.  I also quilted in the ditches around the borders and above the prairie points. I decided I liked the dimensional look of the prairie points not stitched down at the tips.  

I was kind of planning on having this done before Christmas, but I just ran out of time and inspiration. I couldn't decide how to quilt it, if I wanted to quilt it on the frame, or if it would turn out the way I wanted it to.  It was tempting to just put it back in the pile unfinished after the holidays had passed, but I decided now was the time to finish and be ahead of it for this Christmas!  It was quilted with my Bernina 820, not on my frame though. Yesterday, I quilted another project from last years LePetite with my 820 on my frame and I'm really pleased with how it turned out.  Once I get that one trimmed up a bit I'll be sure to take some pictures to share.     

Monday, January 16, 2012

Mortar Monday

My first house blocks ever!  And I'm loving them!

The sawdust is flying around here today because I'm putting together my Full House Schnibble.  These houses are going up so quickly!  Now I see why everyone is saying they're just so addicting!  I can't stop building them.  Dinner and soccer practice are quickly approaching, so I do need to get a grip on this. Using the Fit to be Geese Ruler by Open Gate Quilts and also pressing all of the seams open, is making this project go together so smoothly.  At any rate, I will surely finish this 'Another Year of Schibbles' project with plenty of time to spare!  A great way to start off the New Year.

Getting ready to cut into Reunion.

Speaking of 'Another Year Of Schnibbles', I was lucky enough to win an amazing prize in the Grand Finale Le Petite parade in November from Carrie Nelson.  During the 'I'm-getting-ready-for-the-holidays-and-I-have-so-much-to-do-that-I-don't-know-what-to-do' season I didn't get around to posting about it.  Now that the decorations are down and I'm pretty much recovered......but still discovering those things that have been neglected because of the holidays......here it is.  Thanks so much Carrie, Sinta and Sherri for a fun year of LePetite in 2011!! I'm looking forward to 'Another Year of Schnibbles'!

 Beautiful Nine Dots fabric designed by Carrie,  lots of lovely circa 1934 fabric, and a fun pincushion kit.......that was a good mail day!! Thanks Carrie :-)

I'm taking the plunge and I'm using the new Blogger interface today.  So far, so good!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Border and a Twist

I just love the purple in these Lilac Hill fabrics!
With all boys except me in this house, purple is hard to come by! 

My Blessings From The Hollow quilt is finished! A Christmas break completion! Pieced border and all! That border really ads some pizzazz to this quilt.  I did have to scooch some of the border pieces together a bit to get it to fit on perfectly.  I'm pretty picky with my piecing....I use lots of pins..... and really try to get everything to fit together just right.  This pattern was wonderful.  I'm going to run over to Kim Brackett's flickr group and post this picture along with the other great quilts that have been made with patterns from the book Scrap-Basket Sensations. You should go check them out! Picnic might be next on the list for me. I've been thinking about that one for awhile!     

Twists and turns built in less than 12 hours!
This is more than 5 feet tall!!

My son Aidan had a completion of his own over Christmas break.  Actually, he had more finishes than I did! He is quite the Lego builder too...the more complex the better!  When he was finished building this original creation with K'nex by combining a set that he already had with one that he got for Christmas, he asked if I would take a picture and put it on my blog.  He was sure all of my blog friends would love to see what he had created too!  Thanks so much for taking a look at this amazing roller coaster of his own design :-)

I've been doing some quilting and I'm also ready to start some cutting too.  I'll be back soon with more to share!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Are You Ready To Swap?

Kris from Dandelion Quilts is having a super fun bag swap!  It's not too late to sign up, so if you're interested go HERE to read the details and email her if you want to participate.  This will be my first swap so I'm really excited about it!  I just got a cool, new bag pattern when my LQS had their Market Review in December and this will be the perfect time to use it!  I hope you'll join us!

After reading the questions and comments, there a few more things I want to mention about the Primitive Pinwheels pattern from my last post.  First off, this pattern was so fun and easy! I think I mentioned that the single fold binding was easy, but I didn't say anything about the difficulty level of the pattern....definitely easy!  And lots of fun!  oops! I forgot to unclick italics!  There we go....Anyway, because the cutting involves using the small rotary cutter to cut all the way around a square template without moving the fabric, I would suggest wearing a protective glove.  Although I didn't come close to my hand when I was cutting, I was glad I was wearing it. Just to be on the safe side.  I have to admit I don't wear it all of the time when I'm cutting, but I probably should. Do you usually wear one of these gloves when you use your rotary cutter?  I'm just wondering.

I also wanted to mention that I quilted this project in the ditch, around the pinwheels.  By starting in one corner and working my way through the ditch diagonally to the other and then continuing to go back and forth diagonally, I was able to go around each pinwheel without double stitching. I just had to go back and fill in a few of the ditches on the edge when I had finished the middle. Got that?  I started freemotion quilting this in black thread and although I love freemotion quilting, it just wasn't giving me the look I wanted for this mini quilt, so I started frogging and then I went back to the drawing board.  Very fine, smoke monofilament thread is what I ended up using on the front, and red thread to match the backing fabric on the back. I'm not always a fan of monofilament thread, but I think it does have a place in quilting, and for me, this worked wonderfully!

Well, I'm off to make some Spicy Cheddar-Stuffed Burgers that the boys have been asking to have for a few weeks. I found this recipe in Southern Living Magazine in July 2010 and its always a hit at my house. Have a great weekend!      

Sunday, January 1, 2012

A Change Of Plans

I was planing on finishing up my Blessings From the Hollow Quilt last week, but I made this very tiny quilt instead.  For Christmas my mother-in-law gave me the Primitive Pinwheel pattern from Primitive Gatherings.  My laundry basket full of scraps called out to me to get started......and finished!  

I've never used any of the Lil' Twister tools before and this 11x13 inch quilt was just too cute to resist making during the holiday break.  Christmas Day I sorted scraps and came up with a few possibilities, so there will be more of these on my cutting table in the near future.  The squares for this version are just 3 1/2 inches before they are sewn together with borders. My boys were really interested in how this idea worked.  

 Using the plexiglass square tool to cut out the pieces for the pinwheel, left this interesting scrap on my cutting board in one piece.  

I even got to dig my small, unopened rotary cutter out from the bottom of my sewing box to use for this project! It had never been used before, so when I read that a small rotary cutter was necessary, I was thrilled to have a chance to use it!  Do you use a small rotary cutter a lot?  Maybe I should be using it for other things. Just wondering.       

And a single fold binding was new to me too!  I had always wondered about it, but I just never had the need to make one until now!  After doing a search on the internet, I figured out that it wasn't too different than the double fold binding that I normally make. I just needed to put the binding strip on the quilt without folding it first, then make a small fold as I attached it to the backing.  Not difficult at all!  I was amazed at how many new-to-me techniques and tools I used on such a small quilt!

The quarter in the top right corner of the quilt gives you a better idea of its small size.  Just a warning though, if you decide to give this pattern a try it's a lot like potato chips!  It's difficult to stop at one!

Happy New Year!