Work-in-Progress Girl


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Sunday Stash

This post has taken me a ridiculously long time to write – I spent half my day fighting with lighting and colour of the photos, as you’ll see below. Most of these fabrics came from Sew Sisters via a gift card from the very lovely Michelle at Factotum of Arts. Michelle had a giveaway for her top commentors and I was one of them! She gave me a gift card to a Canadian shop so that I wouldn’t have to worry about the shipping costs – how sweet was that?

Sew Sisters was one of the first sites to have Carolyn Friedlander’s Doe fabric in stock… but somehow I managed to avoid buying it from there and instead spent the card mostly on discounted fabrics. (You get a lot more that way…)

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On the left is natural light in the morning, from the north east and then on the right is natural light in the afternoon, from the south west. Neither of which is remotely close to the real thing.

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I started trying different settings in my camera, to see if I could sort something out. The left is was “vivid colours” – that bit of carpet left in the photo is actually beige, so you can imagine how much effect there was on the fabric colours. And yet it’s still not as egg-yolk yellow as the actual fabric should look. On the right was a “snowy scene” setting on my camera and it’s the closest I managed to come up with.

I don’t even know how the same piece of fabric could come out so wildly different! Anyway, it’s a Living Elements fabric from Art Gallery Fabrics, and if you go here to their website you can find their picture, “Old Yellow,” which is certainly a better representation.

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When I’m buying fabric without a specific purpose in mind (buying a certain line because I like it or buying for a particular project), I tend to look for fabrics that will fill gaps in my stash – colours I don’t have a lot of or print types that I don’t tend to buy. Considering the size of my fabric collection, I have a surprisingly small amount of orange fabrics, so that’s how this print from My Sunshine by Zoe Pearn wound up in the purchase.

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This orange wasn’t from Sew Sisters, I forget where I bought it, but it’s adding to the orange collection too. This one is from Petal and Plume by Bari J. Really great print.

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But back to the Sew Sisters fabrics, here’s a bit of Pepe in Paris from Riley Blake Designs. I picked it up in two different colourways. I was drawn first to the blue one, below, but I liked this low volume version of it too. The one downfall I would say is that the print is quite large, so I think it’d be hard to really showcase the print in a quilt. It’ll work just fine in small pieces, but it’d be harder to show off the whole row of houses.

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Anyway, I really love it in blue. I should have photographed the selvedge – it’s so cute on this line! The colour marks (why can’t I think what those things are called?) are of a little man in a beret. So cute.

I also picked up a bit of sale priced Carolyn Friedlander, from her older lines Botanics and Architextures. This blue didn’t come out so well in the photograph. It’s a tough one to capture:

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Just like the yellow print, I tried photographing this one in a few different locations and levels of sunlight. It just didn’t take well to photographs. I probably already had some of this (I haven’t put it away yet, so I haven’t even checked!) but Botanics is such a great line and it’s so usable in pretty much everything. So you know. Why not? Despite my enormous collection of blue fabrics, I don’t have a ton of dark blues. Actually dark anything – dark orange, darker yellows, dark purples, etc. This one is probably a bit of a medium blue, but it’s still darker than my usual sky blues and aquas.

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These stripes are some of the best low volume fabrics out there. Love love them.

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And of course a bit of text fabric from Architextures.

I think I’d also got some Aurifil thread, but I can’t remember where I put it, so I didn’t photograph that!

Anyway, it was a pretty good fabric shop. I don’t really love Sew Sisters that much – their fabric focus just doesn’t line up that closely with mine (which is fine, I’m sure there are hundreds of quilters who’d turn their noses up at my favourite fabrics) and their website is also unwieldy at best. I think I’ve been spoiled by sites like Fabric Spark and Mad About Patchwork and Hawthorne Threads that let you search in several different ways – colour, designer, fabric line, etc. Anyway, they do have enough bits and bobs I like that I’ve bought from them a handful of times – most recently during a 20% off yardage sale (which might not be over yet, depending when I get this entry posted), when I ordered a few metres of some Kona cottons and a little bit of Cherie fabric – and I’m certain I’ll be back again in the future (especially with the Canadian dollar so low – I don’t see myself buying from American sites, anyway!).

Anyway, I’d shown an orange print above, which didn’t come from Sew Sisters, and when I bought it, I also picked up a few dark blues. (I forgot where I got it from! They were all in the same plastic bag though.)

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This is one of Art Gallery Fabrics new Prisma Elements fabrics. It’s got a metallic silver print over the blue. Very pretty! I like that the metallic is pretty minimal – I find it makes for slightly stiffer and less comfortable feeling fabrics when it’s applied too heavily.

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This is Metro Living Diamonds in Navy. I’ve had a few different Metro Living prints over the years and they’re always great. And good solid colours – navy, orange, red, etc.

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And finally we’ve got Deco Geo in Navy from Michael Miller. Another good navy, though there’s a lot of white in that print.

So that’s kind of an enormous collection of fabric being added to my shelves instead of taken away… I almost hate to add up the yardage and see what it comes to!

Linking up with the always fabulous Molli Sparkles for Sunday Stash. (Link and blog button on the right.)

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Sunday Stash: Strawberry Patch

Winter for a Year

So I don’t know if you know this about Canada, but sometimes we get snow. And sometimes it lasts forever and ever and ever and ever. It’s May, yes, but it’s been snowing again. Normally when we get snow in May it hits the ground and melts, but it’s only melting on pavement and sidewalks, so the trees and grass are all white and wet and it’s gross and depressing and this winter just won’t end. A month ago I kept taking pictures on Instagram and labelling them #ohmygodawinterforayear, which was a reference to an Arcade Fire song, Winter for a Year:

But the other day I had some mail arrive from China with various different cuts of strawberry print fabrics. Summer in a brown envelope! I’d ordered it because I was participating in a Strawberry Dumpling Pouch swap on Instagram/Flickr (#strawberryswap or Dumpling Swap), but it didn’t arrive until after I’d finished sewing the project with non-strawberry fabrics. Sigh. Thanks, Canada Post, for holding it in Richmond for a couple extra days after saying it’d been processed through customs!

Strawberry fabric

Now that I don’t have a need for strawberry print fabric, I’m wondering what the heck I’m going to do with the stuff! I need a second strawberry swap just to use it up… But then again… WordPress is telling me that yesterday was my 3 year anniversary on WordPress and this is going to be my 222st entry (which I’ve been watching/waiting for), which means it’s time for a giveaway!

Per usual, I’m going to do two giveaways and they’re going to be as follows:

1. A $25 giftcard to my favourite Canadian fabric shop, Mad About Patchwork. You could pick up this Mormor bundle from the Designer Bundles section or Spring Forecast from the Curated Bundles section or, you know, you could get five-sixths of that Shot Cotton Sampler from the Stash Bundles section. (It’s really too bad there’s not a $30 gift certificate option – it’d open a few more doors!) Or you could do like I always do a throw in a little of this and a little of that. I recently picked up a selection of Essex Linen blends and you could too!

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2. The second possibly more boring giveaway will be a hand-made pouch or drawstring bag made with some strawberry print linen, as seen above. It’s not made yet, so you’ll just have to imagine it in your mind’s eye! The winner can choose between a zipper pouch (likely the wide-open pouch from Noodlehead, but it could be a dumpling pouch if you’d like something tiny) or a drawstring bag from the In Color Order tutorial. I will also include some charm squares, cut from my own stash, in the colours of your choosing and, well, who knows what else… something, surely.

I’ll be drawing two names, the first one drawn will get their choice of prize, so if you prefer one giveaway over the other make sure to mention it in your comment. (If the first winner doesn’t mention a preference, than the second name drawn will get their first choice.) Otherwise just leave a comment of some kind and something other than “thanks for the chance!” You could tell me about the weather where you are (though maybe I won’t want to know, if this snow doesn’t go away…) or you could tell me why raspberries are better than strawberries or you could give me your favourite strawberry-based recipe or you could tell me about your favourite place to shop online or what kind of swaps you like to participate in or share some of your favourite music with me or whatever….

The winners will be drawn on Saturday, May 10 and will be announced on Sunday, May 11 in my next Sunday Stash post, so enter the giveaway by Friday, lest you miss out! You don’t need to be a follower of any kind of be entered, so if you’re popping by from Molli Sparkle’s Sunday Stash or from Fabricholics Anonymous, feel free to enter.

Molli Sparkles FabAnon

And speaking of Fabricholics Anonymous? Well…… this was an April purchase and it’s not something I pre-planned and it’s not something I “needed” to finish a swap requirement (I’d planned to use it for a swap, but I got by without it when it didn’t arrive in time and would have got by without it if I hadn’t bought it at all). So I guess that’s another month in the failure zone. (And if you’re a close reader, you might also have noticed I mentioned recently buying some Essex Linen blend fabric. So you know. There’s that.) I’m really not very good at this not-buying-fabric thing. Maybe May. Actually, no, not maybe May, because Pink Castle Fabrics had a big sale on all their bundles and I am weak. Maybe June.


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Lime

[Edited to say: Is anybody else annoyed with Flickr for changing yet again? Where did all my pictures go? Note to self: it now overrides to an embed code automatically (or it is right now…) and I need to change it to HTML and the size I want every frigging time, instead of it remembering what I asked for the last time I got an html code from them.]

So last week in my Sunday Stash post I alluded to the fact that I had a package of fabrics coming from Hawthorne Threads, which contained I couldn’t remember what… well, I actually had two packages coming from them. The first one was illicitly bought (illicit because I was supposed to be fabric fasting), but the second was a gift from the ever lovely Michelle at Factotum of Arts – she sent thank you giftcards to her top commentators when she reached 500 followers. Even though they were ordered and sent about a week apart, they both arrived on the same day last week, and so I’ve gotten the two bundles of fabric all mixed up. In any case, I decided to spread out the sharing of these fabrics, so hopefully if I’ve got something new to photograph and look at all month, maybe I won’t keep wanting to buy more…

So this week it’s all about the greens. I was clearly feeling in a very lime sort of mood when I bought these. I had a bath yesterday that smelled like a pina colada (something from Lush) and my sister thought maybe I’ve turned into a secret drinker, downing cocktails in the bathroom on Saturday evenings, but maybe I’m just in the mood for something tropical. Because it’s snowing. Again. Or maybe I should say Still.

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From the left, we have Squared Elements in Lime and Nature Elements in Lime Sherbet both from Art Gallery Fabrics and Cherries in Key Lime from The Henley Studio’s Retro Bake line for Andover.

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Okay. I’m going to have to stop saying that I hate florals. Maybe I’m just picky about florals? Maybe I just like occasional roses? Whatever the case, from the left we have Vintage Rose in Lime and Featherleaf in Green from Heather Bailey’s Lottie Da and Delhi Blooms in Lime from Amy Butler’s Soul Blossoms.

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In slightly quieter greens, I picked up Finery in Cream from Heather Bailey’s Freshcut line, Confetti Dots in Grass from Dear Stella (I think I should have gotten lime, this is a bit of a dreary green in comparison to the others), and Boho Stitches in Sand from Pat Bravo’s Rhapsodia, which is nearly not green at all.

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And then finally, one very dark emerald green, Foliage in Fern from Carolyn Friedlander’s Botanics line. This one feels quite different from anything else I picked up in these two bundles of fabrics, but it was bought with a specific purpose in mind: to be binding on a quilt I’d eventually like to make, using the Botanics charm pack (and the charm pack of Kona cottons matching the Botanics line). I don’t know what size that quilt will wind up, but I’m thinking I should have bought 3/4 of a yard (instead of the half I did get) just in case. Ah well… I do have some other cuts from that line, so I could just piece it, if I wind up needing to do that.

Linking up with Molli Sparkles for Sunday Stash:
Molli Sparkles

Later this week I promise to be back with, you know… posts about things I’ve sewn, rather than fabrics I’ve bought.

Oh! Oh, also! I should say who won my giveaway from last week’s Sunday Stash! The winner was lucky #13: Cristina from Pretty Little Quilts.


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Sunday Stash: Totalling the Diet Train

If there’s anything I’ve learned from 15 years of failed attempts at dieting, it’s that I’m not really very good at dieting. Chocolate, fabric; it’s all the same. I did great in January, I crashed and burned in February, and now in March I’ve… well, crashed and burned again? I don’t know. Certainly the fabric diet train has been totalled by this second crash, if it wasn’t already written off in the first.

Well, this week I’m hosting Molli Sparkles‘s Sunday Stash link-up and giveaway – arriving a day early here because it’s already tomorrow in Australia 😉 – so I guess it’s good that I’ve got a lot of things to show you…

Molli Sparkles

The Mad About Patchwork Stuff:

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I was looking for the pattern on the left and came away with it and the pattern on the right (which, omg, SO MANY PIECES… it turns out the answer to the Enigma – how to make this quilt without y-seams – is all the Half-Square Triangles EVER… seriously, making this quilt will use up your yearly quota of HST).

And somehow all this stuff hopped into the envelope as well:

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The top two are Anna Maria Horner prints from Field Study and as with so many AMH prints, whenever I look at them I wonder WTF I was thinking because I don’t have one sweet clue what to do with them to make them turn into something good. But then someone else will use them and they’ll be brilliant! and amazing! and I’ll have to have them! And so now I do, but right now… I kind of hate them. I suspect I’ve actually bought the bottom print before, one of the prints from Sarah Watson’s Indian Summer line… I really need to clean up my sewing room and get my fabric back in order by colour so that I can actually see what I have.

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There was also a bit of Joel Dewberry love going on because I also bought two different Tile prints from his Notting Hill line as well as the Frames print. Love the colours in these ones. I always say I hate pink, but I LOVE that pink print ridiculously.

The Hawthorne Threads Stuff:

This is still en route and I’ve deleted the email with the invoice so …. it’s a mystery. But I bet it’s good.

The Fabricland Stuff:
I shit-talk Fabricland a lot because mostly it has a lot of not terribly great fabric, but I went there looking for hardware to construct a bag and discovered that they have a new collection of fabrics they’ve got labelled “Anna’s Fabrics” and if you read the selvedges or even the bolt ends under the Anna sticker, they are actually designer fabrics from companies like Andover and Robert Kaufman. I don’t actually love any of the fabrics I picked up from that line, but I was so weirded out that I somehow walked away with .5 metres of each of these:

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Ric Rac Rabbits by Marissa and Creative Thursday for Andover fabrics

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Fiesta by Jennifer Sampou for Robert Kaufman.

They also had a section for fat quarters:

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I picked up a handful of different things, aiming mostly for ones that had the printed side of the selvedge. No info on the blue strawberries or roses. The blue and white is from Paris & Company by My Mind’s Eye for Riley Blake. The grey with dots is something Christmas related also for Riley Blake (the selvedge is too hard to read). No info on the elephants, I just thought they were sort of fun and weird. The next two are both Rocket Launch Club prints by Sarah Jane and the last one is Ombre Dots from Riley Blake.

And finally… The Craftsy Stuff:
It’s just that Craftsy is having a Tula Pink workshop and and and… I barely like most of the prints in this line, but it’s Tula Pink! I love Tula Pink!

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And it involves a lot of 2.5″ strips of fabric, which made me wonder if the mystery is going to be something like her pixelated Anchor quilt! Or maybe it’ll be something like the butterfly quilt! I do know that, no matter what, my quilt will have a lot of horse’s asses in it:

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A 2.5 inch strip is apparently NOT the thing to do with that print. Besides horses’ behinds, there are also hoppy bunnies, which feel like a weird addition, as they’re too sweet and simple and graphic compared to the more realistic style of the rest of the animals and the… busy-ness of many of the other prints. It’s like some kind of Easter novelty fabric that accidentally slipped into the mix. It’s pretty cute, though. Wouldn’t it make a great skirt for a little girl?

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Love that geometric print too. I’ll have to dig through those jelly roll bundles and see what I think of the other fabrics, because I didn’t really like Acacia much either until I saw it in person and then suddenly all those bits I thought were weird seemed to come together.

Anyway… that’s it for this edition of Kristel Has No Self Control. Except that there is a giveaway to go along with the link up! Link up any time this week and you’ll be entered to win…

A fat eighth of the only sparkly fabric I own, something or other from Kokka:

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Two charm packs of Parson Gray’s World Tour line (they only have 12 charms each! why so stingy, FreeSpirit?!), because we all know how Molli feels about David Butler:

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And one charm pack of Amy Butler’s Belle line:

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Now, show us what you got!

1. Link up a blog post welcoming any new sewing supplies to your stash.

2. If it is fabric from your existing stash that you’ve showcased before, please use new photos with as much natural light as possible, and provide as many manufacturing details about the fabric.

3. Try to leave a comment on at least two other links. We want this to be a safe space for sewing supply collectors, after all!

4. Grab the button from Molli Sparkles, and proudly proclaim you endorse Sunday Stashing!

Sigh. I wish WordPress would let this be hosted on site, rather than sending you away to link up! In any case, I’ll let Mr Random pick a winner – you can be from anywhere – after the link up closes at the end of the week. Best of luck and can’t wait to see what’s new in your stash!


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Sunday Stash: Crash. Burn.

I’ve kind of been missing in action for a while – and the important things I’ve missed talking about: the winner of my giveaway was Sarah at Thrift Store Crafter and although I’d said the Gypsy Wife link-up would be happening here at the end of February, plans changed and it’s actually being held by Jo at Riddle and Whimsy – and that’s mostly because I sometimes wind up a depressed headcase in winter (I don’t say that to make light of depression, but to try to downplay it for myself a bit because I’ll do whatever I can to talk myself out of sinking further into all this), it’s a depressing season and I haven’t really been capable of doing much the last couple weeks. I’ve got a couple half written entries spanning all sorts of random topics (for example: why I don’t go look at the blogs of Dudes who favourite my blog – sorry if there are any dude quilters out there who have avatars that looks like ‘dude’ is the only appropriate word to describe them: you know, fedoras, sunglasses, goatees… – I just assume you’re all trying to sell me on your 10 point plan for making mad bank via blogging), but anyway… I’m back for now at least. Hopefully for a while. Hopefully I’ll even have something to talk about and show you that isn’t just fabric I’ve bought. Fabric I’ve illicitly bought. Fabric I’ve bought even though I’m on a fabric fast.

When I crash, I crash hard. Fair to say.

It all started on January 31. I was looking for a copy of the Gypsy Wife pattern because I wanted to run the aforementioned giveaway and I was hoping to find a copy that was actually in Calgary so that I wouldn’t have to have it shipped to me and then have to turn around and ship it away again – why pay shipping twice, you know? So anyway, I went to a local fabric store – Traditional Pastimes – which is (was?) doing a once monthly get-together for people working on Jen Kingwell patterns (Gypsy Wife and… the medallion one that I can’t remember the name of right now). I thought to myself that if they were doing a Wednesday night thing on the subject, then perhaps they’d have the patterns in stock. They didn’t, but as always happens when I walk into a brick and mortar fabric store, I got a bit sucked in.

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Just in the door they had a display of Parson Gray fabrics, the Vagabond line, and a gorgeous quilt using it, and then I conveniently remembered that I’d been buying some Parson Gray fabrics to eventually make a quilt for my dad and bam, 30 more FQs!

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It’s a kind of interesting line. There are a lot of bits of it that I don’t really love, but it works together really well and of course it’s a bit more masculine than your standard fabric choices. Which is exactly what I was aiming for. And I’m hoping that these prints will mix in with another FQ bundle of Parson Gray fabrics that I’ve got (World Tour) so that I can get a nice mix for the quilt, whenever I make it.

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I think I’ve at least half-ways settled on a quilt pattern, even, but I need to fiddle around with the concept. It’s a pattern by… Ashley of Film in the Fridge (oh, I hope I got her name right, wouldn’t I feel like a dick if I’ve misnamed her!) that was in a recent quilting magazine – Quilty? or something else… I bought two magazines in the same day and forget which it was in) which kind of looks like flags, I guess, or pennants, rather. But I want to make a paper-piecing pattern for it, rather than the pattern’s general idea of Just Wing It and Trim Off the Excess. I just can’t with all that fabric waste. Yeah, there’ll be a lot of weird, lost triangle points either way, but at least the background can be a bit less wasteful.

Anyway, then I kept looking, which wasn’t a great thought because a 30 FQ bundle is already a lot when I’m supposedly fabric fasting.

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Back when I’d been to Traditional Pastimes for the first time I’d run across this long quarter roll of fabric from the Styl Mod line by Newcastle Fabrics and I hadn’t bought it because I was trying to be well-behaved… (and that was BEFORE my fabric fast even started).

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I caved and bought it. Another 29 quarter yds/metres of fabric. And then, you know, since I had an uneven amount, 1 FQ short of a full 60 quarters…

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I bought a FQ of this Amy Butler print. From the way it was a folded, I thought it was a different AB print than it turned out to be. This one is Twilight Peony in Amaranth from Soul Blossoms. It’s not bad as florals go, but they’re still not generally my favourite type of print ever.

When I opened that last FQ up and realized it wasn’t the print I thought it was, I talked myself into finding (online) and buying the print I really, really loved so that I could use it for the backing of my Gypsy Wife quilt:

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Sketchbook in Spring from Alchemy. Love the colours, love the sketchiness of the print, just LOVE. Anyway, Hawthorne Threads didn’t have enough to back a whole quilt, so I bought what they did have and then decided that even though I didn’t love it as much, I could instead use the other colour way of the same print for the quilt backing:

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Sketchbook in Fresh. I did get enough of it to back a quilt, so that’s what I’m going to do. But the idea with buying quilt backings it that I’ll only buy backings for FINISHED quilt tops, not ones so far from finished it’s barely beyond the infancy of the idea! (Seven blocks do not a Gypsy Wife quilt make.) I’m still a bit back and forth on this blue and green version of this print. I find it appealing but strange. (And I have a huge hate for blue roses — they just spray/dye them that colour, it’s not like nature produces this sort of blue in a rose!)

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Anyway, since I was already shopping Hawthorne Threads, why not throw in a little bit of extra goodies? I had thoughts about these, but I forget what those thoughts were! I should really write these things down when I think I have a genius idea for something. (These will come back later, anyway, because there are certainly new plans for them.) These are World Tour and Belle, from Mr and Mrs Butler.

So my bad behaviour at Hawthorne Threads over, I turned my wicked eye toward Mad About Patchwork instead. Because my February Stash Bee block was posted and the recipient asked for something in the Radiant Orchid line…

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I didn’t have much that could even charitably be called Radiant Orchid, so I ordered these and then posted a photo on Flickr of the 3 or 4 choices I did have in my stash, which I was sort of hoping my recipient wouldn’t like, so that I could justify having bought these. My recipient did okay a couple of my choices and then when these arrived I decided that they were too pink from the top (Oval Elements in Crocus) and from the left (Diamonds in Raspberry from Tula Pink’s Acacia) and too green in the middle (Pixel Dot in Pomegranate, also from Acacia) and too lavender from the bottom (Deco Dots in Aster from Amy Butler’s Gypsy Caravan). So I wound up using my stash anyway.

Anyway, whenever I shop at Mad About Patchwork I always find myself adding extra because, you know, there’s a flat shipping rate, so I might as well get my money’s worth, right?

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Why not add a charm pack of Botanics? And the matching charm pack of Kona solids? (These were intended to be a giveaway for my 200th post, but it passed unceremoniously, so maybe I’ll save them for a different giveaway. Or maybe I’ll keep them, because I’ve been all about the Emerald Greens lately and there’s a colour I don’t really have in my stash. Like, at all.)

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And how about Pippa in Citron from Michael Miller’s Citron Gray. (Which, by the way, is not citron in colour at all.) Lovely.

You might think that was all that I managed to buy in my two day reign of fabric buying terror, but it wasn’t. No. No, I also hit up Etsy to see what could be seen from the Canadian sellers.

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I finally bought a collection of fabrics I’ve been eyeing (from a destash seller, Liette at Coudsdonc) for a long time. First up, 5″ strips of a selection of Nicey Jane prints. These strips are intended, eventually, for the Gypsy Wife quilt, where long pieces of fabric will become my friend. (Come December. But hey, let’s buy them in February!) The white is a half yard of a white on white dot from Lakehouse Fabrics – hard to photograph!

Also, I picked up a mixed lot of Atelier & Akiko prints from Lecien. I don’t know the name of the line/lines these came from, but first there are these four fabrics, which are not quilting cotton but feel like… I don’t know, kind of like gauze, I guess, so maybe this is double gauze fabric?

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I had been charmed by the hand-drawn, children’s art aspect of these fabrics, but as it turns out, I don’t really love them up close. The lines look kind of… like they were badly rendered. I don’t know. They’re kind of made of dashes or slightly jagged lines, rather than smoothly drawn lines. (Even accounting for crappy children’s drawing, it looks odd.) But it sort of looks (to my eye) like when you have a flaw in printing and every line is just ever so slightly offset so that nothing quite matches up. I don’t know.

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These are the regular cottons from the same line. Fat quarters and cut squares and all sorts of bits and pieces. I still like the idea of these ones, but I definitely like them better from a distance rather than up close where the jagged lines stand out so much to me.

So that was two days worth of Grabby Hands buying of fabric. I wish it had stopped there, but it didn’t. Because I mentioned at the top of my entry that I’ve been kind of depressed and I mentioned back in January that a part of the reason I want to fabric fast is that I often fabric shop when I’m depressed because it’s that brief high of Oh Pretty! which feels good for about five minutes, until I remember I actually have to pay for it all and then it just re-depresses me because it’s wasteful to shop just for those brief bursts of joy. Well. Let’s leave alone the ridiculous psychology of why people shop for happiness (because it IS a ridiculous cycle!) and instead look at some more of my later February purchases. There were only two, so I think that’s not too bad, but I wish there weren’t any, so that’s not great, but I’m trying not to beat myself up, so let’s just say I’ll do better in March.

First, I finally had an idea as far as the whole 2014 Pantone Quilt Challenge, which I won’t talk about, lest I decide not to do it. This whole Radiant Orchid thing is really mystifying me because if you go to Pam’s Colour of the Year page at Mad About Patchwork and then compare the Pantone swatch on the lower left of the page to the photo at the top of the page…. there’s a whole world of difference between them! I don’t know which is the “right” colour and every single fabric I see that’s somewhere in that pinkish-red purple range somehow feels right until I compare it to either of those two images and then they just all seem wrong. Anyway…

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I still think none of these are quite right, but I’m planning to change their looks by heavy application of coloured threads. The print is Tangle in Lavender from Anna Maria Horner’s Dowry, and I think I probably won’t use it for this project. Too busy. The other three are Kaffe Fassett shot cottons in Grape, Granite, and Lilac. (Lilac is the palest colour, Grape the darkest.) I think I’ll just use the three shot cottons for this idea, with the binding in the darkest colour. The Dowry print… it intrigues me, as AMH prints often do, but also makes my brain hurt because it’s not the sort of thing I can really imagine using. I really don’t tend to buy these busy prints too often because I find it hard to mentally place them into projects. There is just so much going on that I can’t figure out how to give them room to breathe.

Anyway, I think I mentioned flat rates and always adding just a little more to “make it worth it” so…

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I also added Pam’s most recent Low Volume Bundle. From top left: Botanics Leaves in Curry, Botanics Graph Paper Garden in Curry, Stitch Squares in Sea, Pearl Bracelet in Glacier (LOVE!). And again from the left: Sun Print Text in Mulberry, White on White Basics Medium Dot from Riley Blake, Prisma Noir from Minimalista, and La Creme Swiss Dots in Red. I also bought a couple yards of an off-white Kona cotton… or maybe that was with the other Mad About Patchwork purchase, but either way it’s a basic and too boring to photograph.

And so was the couple yards of Moda Bella cotton I bought in an off-white from Fat Quarter Shop along with these two half yards:

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On the left is Cherry Candy in Robin’s Egg from Fig Tree & Co.’s Avalon line and on the right is Mezzanine in Seashell and Coral from Fig Tree & Co.’s Tapestry line. These didn’t photograph too well, the blue should be more blue and the off-white should be more creamy.

And that, my friend’s are the full depths to which I crashed this month on the whole Fabric Fast. But as I said somewhere in all this mess: I’ll do better in March.

Linking up with Sunday Stash, hosted this week by Sarah at Mila + Cuatro and Fabricholics Anonymous:

Molli Sparkles FabAnon


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Fabric Fast

I’ve been trying for a while now to talk about this fabric fast that I’m doing this year (first half of, anyway… we’ll see about the rest), but I keep crapping out a couple paragraphs in. Here was the most recent attempt:

I was in my sewing room trying to clean up the space a little because I’m going to have to sleep in there over Christmas (my family – parents, younger sister, and Grandma – are coming up for a week) and I was shovelling fabric by the armload into available nooks and crannies on the shelving unit I never wanted to out-grow when I finally felt relief, instead of a vague sense of terror, about my fabric fast next year.

I’ve said it before, but let me say it again: I have too much stuff. I have too much fabric. I have too many projects in progress. I have too many future projects. There’s just too much.

It seems like enough to say that, but there are so many reasons beyond the STUFF that make me want to fabric fast, and every time I sit down to write those out, I run into problems. I’ve talked about it so many times in so many places (every other blog where someone talked about doing a fast or why they won’t do a fast) that I can’t seem to sort it all out in my head any more. It’s… you know,… because… Reasons.

Here’s one very practical one: I may have to move soon, and likely into a much smaller place, where I will almost certainly no longer have a sewing room.
Here’s a head-casey one: I shop when I’m stressed or depressed and I hate that about myself and the shopping makes me more stressed/depressed, which starts the cycle all over.
Here’s a rage against consumer culture one: I hate that I somehow feel pressured to buy things now because What If I Can’t Find It Again When I Need It. (Here’s a true fact about the current quilting world: the number of designers and fabric lines that appeal to current day sewists is expanding, not contracting. THERE WILL BE MORE AND OTHER BEAUTIFUL THINGS. Do I need this beautiful raspberry print today? Probably not because three years from now, there will be five beautiful raspberry prints. Or perhaps I won’t like raspberry any more anyway, but there will be fifty beautiful *insert colour of choice* prints. If I’m not planning to use it now, why am I worrying about not being able to find it later? I’ll find something different later and I might even like it better.)

These aren’t all the reasons I’m fabric fasting, but I think they’re enough to be getting on with.

FabAnon

Making Rebecca Lynne and Jess at The Elven Garden came up with this idea of Fabricholics Anonymous, for which they’ve created the following list of goals and rules:

GOALS:
– To use the Stash I already have!
– Finish UFOs without distraction by shifting to other new beautiful fabric
– Stop the insanity of constantly buying the latest and greatest fabric
– Save the $$ I spend on stashing
– Destash the fabrics that I realize I am never going to use

FABRIC FAST RULES:
1) No fabric purchases for 6 months beginning January 1, 2014
2) At 6 months re-evaluate status and decide whether to keep going for full year – evaluation July 1, 2014
3) Create a UFO list and complete them!
4) Exceptions:
Backing: purchasing a backing to finish a quilt top is permissible. However, attempting to use fabric in your possession for a backing is preferable.
Books and Magazine purchases are allowed as they are not fabric. Notions acceptable too.
Swap Mama Fabric: if hosting a swap you are permitted to by fabric to execute swap duties, but you may not join a swap simply for the sake of being able to buy fabric!
Quilts for Publication: if you are making a quilt for a publication and need certain fabric to execute it correctly then that is a major exception – who can blame you?

Here are my exceptions:
1. Backings, borders, and solid white fabric if necessary. Also, I have a $75 gift card for Mad About Patchwork, which I want to save until I start feeling a bit wibbly about the whole fasting thing. (Rules for using that? I can’t spend more than the card plus the cost of shipping/tax.) Also notions are allowed, but only necessary items like thread or needles, not items used in the creation of new projects, like zippers for zip pouches or whatever. I want to finish/use up, not start/add to the collection.
2. No magazines or books: I don’t use the ones I have. Also, no more Craftsy classes: I don’t use the ones I have.
3. No joining swaps if it means buying fabric. (I can make an exception if necessary for my only bee, Stash Bee (I’m in Hive 12), but I have a pretty extensive stash, so there should be no issue there. And I should try to swap for fabric, rather than purchasing fabric, if necessary.)
4. Quilts for publications or teaching classes is not an issue.

As for the UFO/WIP list, that’s a tough one. I have a very incomplete list on a permanent page, but I’m going to try to make a list based on what’s in my Flickr acct. This might get hella long. Forewarned is forearmed. (Honestly, I won’t mind if you just close this down here. It’s going to get embarrassing.)

In Progress (Includes Embroidery WIPs, at the bottom)
Catvent quilt top — blocks in progress
Sunshine cushion cover — top finished, needs to be quilted and then sewn together
Confetti Go Lucky quilt — needs to be basted, quilted, bound
Pushme Pullme quilt — needs to be basted, quilted, bound
Churn Dash quilt — needs more blocks made
Doctor Who quilt — need to finish borders
2 Trip Around the World baby quilts (one, two) — tops finished except borders, will be donated as tops to a Linus charity (I have no backing, so don’t intend to finish them) — borders complete and tops sent away
Mendocino Posh Tot quilt — needs to be basted, quilted, bound
Checkerboard quilt — need to baste, quilt, bind
First Quilt Ever! — baste, quilt, bind
Curio quilt — finish blocks & top
Mendocino Mod Times quilt — finish top
Christmas quilt?? — Do…. something with these blocks
Pink Bento Box quilt (Meant to be a charity thing for my work) — finish blocks, top, etc.
The Poppy quilt — Baste, quilt, bind
Eva’s Paintbox quilt — Finish blocks
Amy Butler Pink Pink Pink BOM — finish blocks
Oranges and Browns BOM — finish blocks (assuming I still have this one? Might have given the blocks away…)
Stupendously Ugly BOM — burn and salt the earth
Sunlight and Shadows quilt — ugh, piece top, etc.
Green Amy Butler QAYG quilt — finish quilting blocks, piece together
Blue and Orange Big Block quilt — baste, quilt, bind
Random Blue Blocks quilt (do I still have these?) — create a top, etc.
Hated Houses wall-hanging (something started for my mom before I bought my sewing machine — ie. it’s all hand-pieced so far) — salvage into a small wall-hanging
Plume quilt — baste, quilt, bind
– Christmas table runner (No photo) — Meant to be a gift, can’t recall where I was at in the creation of it
Saturday Surprise Sampler — finish top, etc.
Blue and Brown Improv Block quilt — need to piece remaining blocks, etc.
2012 Modern BOM from Sew Mama Sew (couldn’t find a picture of the finished top) – baste, quilt, bind
Summer stitching club wall-hanging — need to finish embroidery, cut out backing fabric, etc.
Stitch Sampler Along — need to finish embroidery, piece mini quilt, etc.
Tulip Slip cushion — need to do appliqué and create cushion
Daisy Chain embroidery — need to finish stitching
Nesting Place embroidery — need to finish stitching, build needlecase, etc.
Molly Mutante wall-hanging — embroidery done, need to do everything else

Haven’t Started/Wish List (Includes embroidery projects, at the bottom)
Bear Paw quilt repair — at the request of my sister, she doesn’t care how I repair it or with what
– Sunburst table topper — have kit
– Cori Dantini mini-quilts — have fabric
– Birdie Sling bag — have fabric
– Quilt for my Dad — no particular plan, just to use Parson Grey fabric
– Hourglass quilt for my sister — have fabric
Acacia quilt (Craftsy class quilt) — have fabric
– Valori Wells Hexagon quilt (Rosalie) — have kit
– Ugly Welcome Wall-hanging (for my mother, her request) — have fabric
– Oh Canada quilt — uses scraps + white
– Embroidered wool wall-hanging — have wool and pattern
– Gypsy Wife quilt — have fabric
– Bird of Paradise wall-hanging – have kit
– City Quilts purple quilt — have kit
– Pale Blue and White Quilt — have kit
– Reunion quilt — have kit (Is it Reunion? I forget now…)
– Tufted Tweets reflection quilt — have fabric
– Matryoshka doll ornaments — have felt, need to make two for my cousin and her husband
– Varga girl mini
– Talliaferro crewel embroidery — have kit
– Mellerstain parrots embroidery — have kit
– Crewel Twists embroidery — have kit
– Little Garden embroidery sampler — have kit

Did I say this would be long? It was long. Did I say it would be embarrassing? It’s embarrassing. I really need some Off-The-Puter Quilty Friends who would slap me round the face if I ever start talking about starting something new. (Also, I feel the need to disclaim and say that these are projects leading back 10 years. It’s not like I’ve generated all these unfinished things in the last year or two.)(Still, it’s embarrassing either way.)