Work-in-Progress Girl


16 Comments

APQResolutions 2017

So All People Quilt runs a yearly UFO challenge designed to get people working on old and unfinished projects. And I’ve got plenty of those.

apqresolution

I haven’t been updating in a while, so I’m hoping to get back to updating at least a few times a month and some of those posts will hopefully be about me working on (and finishing?!) some of my UFOs. This list contains just twelve (of many!) and each month APQ will choose a number and that number is the project I’ll attempt to finish in that month, so here’s my twelve…

ONE
All Solids Churn Dash Quilt

Churn Dash

This project was begun as part of the Simply Solids Bee in… 2013 (?) and then again in the Stash Bee in 2014. I can’t remember how many blocks I have, either 30 or 42 and they’ll be pieced together like this, staggered with partial blocks on certain columns. I’ve got all my blocks, but need to piece them into a top, which then needs to be basted, quilted, and bound.

TWO
Baby Moda Love Quilt

Moda Love

A baby quilt (or very large mini quilt?) using the Moda Love Charm Quilt pattern. It looks brown in this photo, but it’s actually a burgundy/maroon sort of background. I wanted to put a border on this – it’s only 32″ square – but wasn’t able to track down any of the prints that I thought would work best for a border (namely one of the burgundy/maroon-y ones), so it might just stay a small quilt. Needs to be basted, quilted, and bound.

THREE
Blue Nine Patch Quilt

First Project Ever

This was my first project ever and has been a UFO for over 10 years. The top is pieced (the blocks by hand, even!), just needs to be basted, quilted, and bound.

FOUR
Blue-Orange Big Block Quilt

[No existing photo?!]

My second oldest UFO, this was in progress when I moved to Calgary almost 10 years ago. I might be wrong, but I think it’s basted and just waiting to be quilted. For all I know, the pins are rusted into place. I think I won’t like this one much when I fish it out from the closet again, but it’d be good to knock such a long-standing project off the list!

FIVE
Carolyn Friedlander Rando Patchwork Quilt

Botanics Random Patchwork

A truly dreadful photo – I should pull this one out of storage just to get a better shot of it. Needs to be basted, quilted, and bound.

SIX
Charity Quilt-as-you-Go Quilt

QAYG

This quilt doesn’t look like much in photos because I’ve got so little of it done – 1/6th of the rows – and couldn’t think of a good way to photograph a single column of a quilt. It will be donated to a charity that benefits my younger sister (who is disabled). It’s following a slightly modified Herringbone quilt pattern from Maureen Cracknell’s Craftsy class, Quick Quilt As You Go. I need to finish sewing up the columns of fabric, then piece them into a top, which then gets lightly quilting to hold it and the back together.

SEVEN
Dad’s Quarter Section Quilt

Quarter section quilt

This one is further along than the picture implies – all the blocks are sewn, they just need to be pieced into rows and then a top and then to be basted and bound.

EIGHT
Doctor Who Quilt

Dr Who Quilt-in-Progress

I had big plans for the border on this quilt, so most of the quilt is pieced… just the side border needs to be finished. Maybe the answer will be to scale back the border idea,… but I like that border idea. I guess we’ll see what happens! Once the border is worked out, then it needs to be basted, quilted, and bound.

NINE
Halloween Plus Quilt

Halloween Plus Quilt

I usually don’t go for holiday specific quilts, but this one is pretty subtle and in slightly unusual colours – rust, teal blue, deep purple. I don’t have a good photo of it, but the top is completed, it just needs to be basted, quilted, and bound.

TEN
Midnight Mystery QAL Quilt

Midnight Mystery Quiltalong

I really don’t like to finish quilts, do I? This is another, yet another, that just needs to be basted, quilted, and bound.

ELEVEN
Mom’s Hexi Quilt (Confetti Go Lucky)

Q1 FAL projects

This one is getting to be a pretty long standing UFO of mine, and as it’s meant to be a gift, I’d really, really like to get it done! It’s partially quilted, but there’s still a long road to go (because I had the GENIUS idea of quilting it with quarter inch spacing around all the main units.. quarter inch!!). Quilting and binding is all that’s left.

TWELVE
Plume Quilt

Fabric Friday: Tailfeathers in Lime

I seem not to have a picture of this quilt top, which is about throw sized and has been laying around for several years. I wanted to try to quilt feathers on it, but was terrified of trying. I think I’m finally ready to just give the feathers a go, whether they turn out good or bad. So basting, quilting, and binding is all that’s left.

apqresolution

So that is where that is at! Twelve projects desperately in need of finishing! All People Quilt has already revealed their pick for January, so I suppose I can reveal that Number Six – the Quilt as You Go Project is my goal for January! Just as well because it has a due date early in the year, if I’m going to donate it to my charity of choice!

I’ll also be participating in One Monthly Goal, hosted by Elm Street Quilts, and so that same project will be my goal for that linky as well!

OMGjan


4 Comments

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…)

046045

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.

047048

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.

065

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.

067

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.

062

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.

064

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:

036

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.

051

050

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

037

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.)

073

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.

069

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.

074

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.)


4 Comments

Sunday Stash: Lime Flannel

So if you follow me on Instagram (@clumsykristel), you’ll know I’ve been working on some brown and green hashtag blocks. They’re going to be put together into a baby quilt for a friend of my sister who is having her first baby… sometime soon. She doesn’t know if she’s having a boy or a girl, but has been doing things up in browns and lime greens, so that was the direction my sister asked me to angle in. I love backing baby blankets in flannels, so I was fortunate to already have a flannel in my stash that I thought would work perfectly…

Flannel

This fabric is Erin McMorris’s Birds from Irving Street (if Irving Street is the name of this fabric line – it’s really tough to read the printing on the selvedge). I also have another chunk of it in yellow, which is pretty awesome too. But I’d kind of forgotten about the pink… We were going to go ahead with it anyway because even if she has a boy, what’s a little pink the grand scheme of things? And if you follow many fabric loving people on Instagram, you know there’s a big push to use stash fabric this year (tied to the hashtag #SewMyStash2015) and I was kind of excited about this because the whole thing was going to be made from stash – all the fabric on the front is straight off my shelves (and scrap bins) and of course this flannel was too. But I went to the fabric store for thread. And that was my downfall, because you know what I found at the fabric store? Fabric. Fabric without pink in it. And it was 50% off, so who can walk away from that?

Flannel

I’d been wanting this Ann Kelle flannel for a long time, but didn’t buy it because I didn’t have a use for it. But now I do! Sure, it’s floral, but what’s a little floral in a (potential) little boy’s life? Not much. But I was pretty sure my sister wouldn’t like it, so I had to pick up a second choice too. Give her some options, you know?

Flannel

My sister likes cute things for little kids (which I usually don’t – I generally avoid children’s prints though I have got a few), so when I found this elephant flannel, I sort of figured she’d prefer it to both the floral and the birds. And she did. I try not to buy these cheaper flannels because they shrink at a greater rate and are far more shred-happy than the nicer flannels you get from the bigger companies (the birds are FreeSpirit and the floral is Robert Kaufman), but I just bought a little extra and if I need to seam it, I’ll probably make a wider seam allowance than I usually would, just to combat possible shredding. Anyway, it’ll be a cute addition to the quilt (and there’s one hashtag block with elephants, so you know… it fits). Now I just need to focus (and get my Juki back from the shop) and get it quilted up so it’ll be ready for the baby shower.

Linking up to Sunday Stash with Molli Sparkles.


26 Comments

30/30 Sewing Challenge: Month End

You know, I keep thinking I should have more to show because I’ve spent SO MUCH time crafting this month, but so much of it was absorbed in the beginning of the month with the Radiant Orchid challenge mini-quilt, that once I was finished with that, nearly all my time went into making things I had to make – bee blocks and swap projects. Which, hey, nothing wrong with that, but I still have so much more I wanted to finish this month!

It’s the last day of March, for example, [or the first day of April, even… I fell asleep before I could finished editing this post yesterday] and I didn’t even touch my Gypsy Wife booklet! Not a single Gypsy Wife block sewn in March! But if I get them done by the weekend, I’m still linking up with Ashley at Wasn’t Quilt in a Day.

Beginnings of two #quilts -- lowish volume and loud for the #gypsywifequiltalong

This (rather dreadful Instagram photo in a too-dark room) is where both my Gypsy Wife quilts are at. I’m really, really wanting to get working on these, but that Pershing block is really kind of scaring me – I’ve been having issues with details lately and none of my blocks lately have been working out quite like I hope. Pershing is not a good one for when you’re feeling wibbly about your sewing skills.

I’m also six blocks behind on the Layer Cake Sampler Quiltalong! Six blocks!

Layer Cake Sampler QAL... so far...

This is where I’m at though! Loving how this is coming together, although I do feel a little bit like it’s too pink. I’ll have to wait till I have more blocks together, but maybe I’ll need to sash it in a dark purple or burgundy or something. I think I have a bunch of yardage from this line (Eva by Basic Grey), which was meant to be used as backing for a different Eva quilt-in-progress, but depending what the fabrics are, maybe I’ll be able to use it for finishing the quilt.

So what have I gotten done since finishing my Orchid quilt? Well… a couple bee blocks:

Stash Bee Hive #12 March Block Stash Bee Hive #12 March Block

Neither one of them turned out exactly as I’d hoped – I don’t know… the first one came together pretty well, but that second one is a mess of bad points and it’s a little too small and I was really not happy with it. But I kind of love the colours – that domino dot was a great match for that centre print, although I think it’s a lot more green than the recipient was looking for. In any case, I had changed the needle (and thread) in between sewing the first block and the second and it was just a fight to get anything to work properly. I’m not sure what’s the culprit – maybe the bobbin is wound crookedly, maybe the needle has a bad point or it’s slightly misshapen or the wrong size or maybe I’m a poor craftsman who is blaming her tools. In any case, I’m going to start swapping things out and see if something helps.

I also finished a few things for the 4S swap on Flickr… I don’t want to write a full post about those yet, but here is a shot of the drawstring bag I created and the pincushion I tucked in along with some other treats (fabric and candy and chocolate…):

mosaic5574cfc68196e492b4700c6faf416cc886004dc2

I feel like there must be more, but I’m drawing a blank on it, so I guess that’s what I’ve been up to with all my 30 minutes (and more) of crafting every day for the last while! Truly, the majority of the month was taken up with this guy, time hog that it was:

Radiant Orchid mini quilt

Linking up with Sarah at Berry Barn Designs for the 30/30 Sewing Challenge. In general I was pretty successful with the 30 minutes a day thing, I think I only missed once on a weekend when I was unexpectedly working nights (but had expected to have time off). It feels like not very much stuff, considering the time I put into it, but crafting really can be a huge time suck. I enjoy it, don’t get me wrong, but it is not a speedy thing, even when something moves along quickly.

Berry Barn Designs

Linking up also to WIP Wednesday at Needle and Thread Network and WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced and Let’s Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts:

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced Sew Fresh Quilts


10 Comments

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.

011

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.

002

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.

008

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.

005

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.


52 Comments

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:

004005

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:

030

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.

028

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:

026

Ric Rac Rabbits by Marissa and Creative Thursday for Andover fabrics

025

Fiesta by Jennifer Sampou for Robert Kaufman.

They also had a section for fat quarters:

024

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!

015

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:

010

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?

020

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:

022

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:

002

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

004

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!


25 Comments

Fabric Binge

So I haven’t really talked about it yet, though I’ve kind of hinted around it I think, but I’m going to try to challenge myself to a six month fabric diet. I’m still not going to talk about it much, because I’ve got a half-written, insanely long draft post on the subject that I need to weed down into something manageable before I really do. But there’s a button off to the right that reads Fabricholics Anonymous, and that’s what I’m talking about when I talk about a fabric diet. (If you’re interested.)

The funny (and slightly pathetic) part of this whole proposed fabric diet is that I’ve spent the last month or so in a vague sort of panic about What I’m Going To Miss (Botanics! Which, yes, I know can already be bought, but I don’t know of any Canadian shops that are already selling it and I do try, generally speaking, to buy from Canadian sites if I can) and What If I Need Colour X and all kinds of ridiculousness. So there’s been a little bit of binge shopping.

This is the first wave.

001

Oh look, it’s more quilt patterns! Just what I need! But I REALLY love that Gypsy Wife pattern and I’ve seen a small quilt-along for Midnight At The Oasis, which is producing some really interesting quilts and and and… I just couldn’t help myself. Every year I have lots of little goals about how I hope my crafting will go for the year – 2014 is meant to be the year of One Step Closer – and making myself a Gypsy Wife quilt is one of them. What I love about it is that it’s slightly crazy, but it should never be boring because it’s made up of a pile of different blocks (so none of the repetition that turns into work instead of play). Midnight at the Oasis? Well…. I liked it better when I was reading about it but not realizing that those Churn Dashes are actually 52 churn dashes, 3″ tall each. ACK. That’s a hell of a lot of work right there! And then after that comes the million and one Nine Patch blocks, also, I think, 3″ tall (I’d have to go fish out the pattern to be sure, but that’s A LOT of 1.5″ squares to be cutting out – and it doesn’t even recommend strip piecing! Which I’d totally do, just with lots and lots of colours, so as to minimize the amount of bitty little squares to be piecing). Anyway, if that one ever happens, I think it’d have to be a in a leader and ender type project, where all those little squares get pieced as you’re doing other things.

This next group of fabrics is really the fault of Sarah at Sarah Quilts because, you know, she held a gun to my head from all those miles away and MADE me purchase this fabric:

006

Sarah made a Pushme Pullme cushion cover featuring this fabric and if you read through the comments there, you’ll see me asking her just what that fabric is… See. Her fault. I just kind of love that it looks like an illustration in an old encyclopaedia. I bought two yards of it. Sarah’s fault. Also her fault? I had to fill up the shopping cart to Make The Shipping Worth It.

004

I always feel like I don’t have enough neutrals for using in the backgrounds of blocks, so there’s this bit of fabric from the Little Black Dress line (which I think was produced by Moda). It’s not true that I don’t have neutrals for backgrounds… I just tend to use solid neutrals all the time instead of prints, so really I’ve got a metric tonne of unused neutrals going back to the dawn of my quilting career, as it were. Just one more for the pile.

Three yards of fabric does NOT a full shopping cart make, so I added a few pre-cuts as well:

003

Two Simply Style honeycombs. The Confetti-Go-Lucky quilt pattern, Confetti by V and Co., was designed to feature this particular pre-cut. I haven’t decided if I’m going to make another Confetti quilt to use it in that way (although, the temptation is there, so long as I’ve got enough background material because I won’t be able to buy it, come January) or if I’ll make something more traditional with it, like hexagon flowers or whatever. The two mini-charms are Road 15 – another thing I’ve not no particular plan for. I just thought they were cute. There was also a third mini-charm pack of Kate Spain’s Sunnyside fabric, but it’s already pulled apart for use elsewhere.

008

Then I had to hit up Hawthorne Threads because they sell Emily Herrick’s Technicolor line and I wanted to get a little bit more of that green and navy tile print on the right side of that photo. That was my favourite print in the Double Hourglass quilt I made and so I used it as binding, but then I didn’t have any left! Since I was buying just that little bit more, I also picked up the same print in orange and then the two leaf prints, also from the same line.

010

And I thought, well, since I’m here… maybe I’ll also pick up those two Joel Dewberry honeycomb prints I’ve been wanting for ages. (Actually, it might have been the other way around: stopping by for the honeycomb and adding all the rest.) These were another case of being surprised by the scale of Joel Dewberry prints – somehow I’d imagined them being quite small and actually the overall print is quite large. It’ll work either way; it just surprised me. And, well, since I was there, I also picked up those four prints from JD’s True Colors line. (Man does it hurt to take the U out of the name of these fabrics! Technicolor. True Colors. It just looks WEIRD.)

011

And then finally it was the sale section. Subway tiles! A gorgeous purple print! Chartreuse! And some grey variegated Aurifil thread for a future project. I’ve used Aurifil off and on for a few different projects now and I’m still not convinced it’s the best thing since the rotary cutter and self-healing mat. It’s fine and has a nice sheen and my machine likes it well enough, but it makes WEIRD fluffy lint in my bobbin case. (I mean, all thread leave some lint, this is just sort of… different textured lint.) I’ve always had good results with Guttermann thread and it’s cheaper and I can pick it up at a store two stops down the train from my work, so I’ll probably mostly go on using it for regular piecing and if I need to colour match. I’ll use the Aurifil if I’ve got it or if I find a good deal for it (or if I someday buy a new machine and it doesn’t like the cheaper thread!).

Linking up with Sunday Stash at Molli Sparkles:

Finding Fifth


4 Comments

Sunday Stash

When I was thinking about writing today’s entry, I was just going to show you my newest influx of fabric…

Sunday Stash

I’m always buying something. No matter how often I say I’m going on a fabric fast or whatever, I always wind up stumbling over a 30% off sale or I just need a red stripe for a binding or in this case, I’m just super uncertain what to send for a Fat Quarter swap and so I wind up buying a pile of stuff to potentially give away. My swap partner didn’t give a lot of direction as to what she was hoping to receive and though she commented on several pictures, she didn’t really comment so much on MINE, so I compiled a great big list of stuff she mentioned liking and then thought, ‘oh god, I don’t own any of that!’ Some of it I knew I could get from Mad About Patchwork, so I started loading up a great big cart of potential fabrics.

Starting on the left is Folkloric Blooms in Fuchsia (Robert Kaufman), Architextures Scribble Notes in Navy (Robert Kaufman), Architextures Landscape in Grass (Robert Kaufman), and Architextures Blueprint in Grass (Robert Kaufman). Then from the top right, a Pepper print (don’t know it’s name, by Robert Kaufman), Waterfront Park’s Domino Dot in Clementine by Violet Craft, Just My Type’s Letterpress in Red by Patty Young, Waterfront Park’s Domino Dot in Jewel by Violet Craft, and Just My Type’s Grosgrain in Red by Patty Young.

Interestingly, I didn’t wind up using any of these new fabrics that I’d bought with the swap in mind. Nope, I wound up pulling things that have been in my stash for a little while:

FQ Blender Swap pkg

I don’t really recall the names of the fabrics or the lines they come from and it’s already in the mail, so I can’t even go look it up. The bird print on the bottom is by Aneela Hoey and the red is a Cosmo Cricket print. The other two, I don’t really know. I wound up choosing three fabrics that my partner had specifically mentioned liking in a couple of different posts and the fourth one, the Cosmo Cricket print just felt like a fun choice. Of course, looking at the photo now, I really don’t think that red print is a very good choice because the point of it all was to swap blender fabrics and I think there is too much contrast in that print for it to be strictly a blender print. Anyway, as long as my partner likes it, I guess that’s all that really matters.

As for the rest of it… it’s always my goal to have my stash get smaller (through use) rather than bigger, but maybe I’ll succeed a little better another day… (That won’t be for a few weeks at least, though. I’ve got two packages coming from within Canada and one from without. Ahem. And I may have a cartload of stuff at Super Buzzy that I’m trying to talk myself into hitting the “Remove” button for because I. Do. Not. Need. More. Fabric.)

Anyway, few days ago though I got talking with Paula from The Sassy Quilter about some of Moda’s business practises. I mean, she brought it up in one of her posts, that they only print a fabric line once and then when the fabric is gone, it’s gone. I think it’s a kind of crappy thing to do, a bit of a bully’s move. You have to buy it now, even if you’re not 100% you want it, because if you don’t, it might be gone and you’ll never have a chance at it again. It’s just like Disney and their films in the supposed vault: it’s a way to pressure people into buying Just In Case. I understand the thought behind it, it’s supposed to make the fabric seem more special, more precious, and therefore make it more likely that you’ll buy it early and in greater quantity. Moda seems to be doing well, so I think it’s working for them. On the other hand, it’s really damned annoying.

I didn’t start buying fabric online until a couple years ago – I didn’t have a credit card until about 4-5 years ago (because I had a paranoia that if I had one, I’d just spend a ton of money on dumb crap and then wind up one of those people with $10,000 credit card debt and nothing much to show for it, which I should say hasn’t happened, thank god), so most of my nice fabric was bought within the last couple of years. But there are a lot of really lovely fabric lines that I either didn’t know existed (because I lived a long ways off from good fabric stores, and still do) or that were already hard to find by that point. I think of fabric like Tula Pink’s Neptune line, which I didn’t like very much to begin with and so ignored until it was too late to get the “good” prints. At some point you’re just left hoping you’ll stumble unexpectedly over something amazing in a random store somewhere.

So a few weeks back I was in Lethbridge and went to a couple quilt stores there. I posted photos back then of the stuff that I’d bought, including this bundle, which was labelled as a 12 FQ pack of Amy Butler prints:

FQ Bundle

I had laughed a bit at the time because that lime and white print in the middle is actually a Heather Bailey print, but what I didn’t noticed when I pulled it apart at the time was that that pink and blue print on the bottom row is actually a long out of print Tula Pink fabric from her Hushabye line:

Hushabye Bunny Damask

I was never a really big fan of the Hushabye line, mostly because it was too Children’s Fabric to me, so that’s not one of those Out of Print lines that I pine for (I might still buy the Circus Dot in Sage if I could ever find it, I find that print oddly attractive, but ONLY in that colour-way), but it’s kind of hilarious to me that tucked away with those Amy Butler prints was this one OOP HTF fabric that some people probably do pine after and wouldn’t ever get their hands on because Moda’s got it Locked In The Vault. (If someone has that Circus Dot in Sage and wants to do a trade, this FQ for that one, I could get behind that. Just saying.)

I wonder if some day they’ll make the (probably sound) business decision to Unlock their Vault and reprint either selected lines or select prints from some of their old lines, just to make another stack of money to swim around in like Donald Duck, before locking it all back up again. Anything you wish they’d reprint?

Linking up with Finding Fifth’s Sunday Stash, this week hosted at Blossom Heart Quilts:
Finding Fifth


2 Comments

Pencil Case style Zipper Pouch

Yesterday my sister and I went out to do all the things:
I went book shopping while she got her hair cut, we got manicures, we got our eyebrows threaded (this is like… high-speed plucking, but with a string rather than a pair of tweezers), we went junk food shopping (ahem), and… I forget. All I know is I hadn’t slept, because I worked the night shift again, and then we did all the things ever and then I came home and slept for an hour and a half so that I wouldn’t pass out in my dinner, and then I made my sister a little zipper pouch in the space of time it took me to watch the last 15 minutes of the Shakespeare episode of Doctor Who, plus the episode that came after. (Cats + traffic jams + other weird aliens.) (I’d forgotten how much I loved the season with Martha Jones. She doesn’t get that much respect in a lot of the online forums I read, but I really liked her and there were a lot of fun episodes in her season.)

Anyway, the book store that I went to, like a lot of book stores, has had to put more and more home decor and personal care items into the store alongside the books because book sales are tanking, and so I spent a long, long time looking at all the ridiculously tempting things they had there. (I bought some Polaroid style greeting cards and a Chuck Klosterman book, but otherwise avoiding spending money on anything.) When my sister came in, she found a zipper pouch, which was this great purple colour, but had ugly gold lettering on it, which she was tempted to buy to use as a passport/receipts carrying pouch while in the US next week – she and her husband are taking a road trip to California, leaving tomorrow and returning in September – and she’ll need to collect all her receipts for purchases that she might have to declare when coming back into Canada.

Honey. You live with someone who has a sewing machine and too much time on her hands. (I’m on vacation this week too! But I’m not taking a road trip to California 😦 )

Pencil Case-Style Zipper Pouch

So I made her a super simple lined and divided zipper pouch. I didn’t follow a pattern – it’s really basic! I just figured out the size she wanted (large enough to hold two passports, plus some room for receipts) and found some fabrics in colours I knew she’d like. I didn’t decorate the outside in any way – it’s just Essex Yarn-Dyed Linen in Black – because my sister is not into anything very fancy or cute or whatever. Even simple patchwork would have been more than she’d have wanted. She pretty much likes red and black and white, so there’s the black (and kind of white…) with a red zipper from Zipit. (The zipper pull is also from Zipit. I have a pile of Octopus ones, but this one with the robots in love was attached to my last order of zippers from Zipit. It seemed to fit the black white red theme a little better than any of my octopuses.)

Zipper Pouch

The interior is lined with a red MoMo print and then I put in a divider in a red Kona Cotton. It’s not perfect – somehow the divider feels loose, but I don’t know how to make it more taut? I did it the same size as the lining pieces, but should I have made it a touch smaller and then stretched the bejeezus out of it to make it fit but stay taut? I also messed up the zipper/seam somehow at either end – I’ve done it with my last two pouches and I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong, but the zippers are winding up all lumpy on the ends and I couldn’t even top stitch this pouch because I didn’t think I’d be able to get the sewing machine to stitch over the lumps at the end where the zipper opens. (The end of the zipper isn’t quite so bad.)

Anyway, this pattern free sewing didn’t go so bad despite the few little issues and my sister is happy – it saved her $25 or whatever that one from the store cost and it’ll get the job done. (The photos are pretty awful though. I should go steal it back and take some better pictures now that I could use natural light instead of the garbagey yellow overhead light in my sewing room.)


23 Comments

Work in Progress Wednesday

It’s work in progress Wednesday and I’m a little torn on what to post about because the thing I’m actually working on is something I don’t really want to talk about! It’s a project for a swap and if the recipient sees it she’s going to look at it and know immediately that it’s for her. But I’m pretty sure she doesn’t read my blog, so I’ll just lock the photo on Flickr (where she might see it) and post it here:

Untitled

What is it, I wonder? Well, not much to see there, but I like it that way. For now anyway!

I’m also thinking about working on my Star Surround quilt, but no photos because I haven’t gotten past the thinking stage yet. (Haha. That’s how I am with everything. My work has decided not to give me the boost in pay that my new job requirements entitle me too, which means I SHOULD be emailing the guy at the union so that he can have that fight with them – which I anticipate losing, but feel the need to fight anyway before stepping down and thinkingreallyhardabouttellingthemwheretoshoveit going back to doing my old job because hell no they don’t get my work for free – but I don’t like making phone calls so I’ve been sitting on the info for a week now and just thinking about calling the union guy.)

Instead, let me tell you about the work-in-progress that is 1. the spending of all the money ever and 2. the acquiring of increasing amounts of stash. And stuff. We can’t forget the stuff, no. Stuff like these shoes, made with Liberty of London fabric:

Liberty Shoes

Cutest shoes ever. Am I wrong? Because I don’t think I’m wrong. As a general rule I don’t like Liberty fabric all that much – it might be the bomb to work with and feel better than any substance known to mankind, but I find so many of their fabrics to be stuffy little florals that just don’t appeal to me. But this stuffy little floral is so sweet it could rot my teeth. Also, they were 70% off at The Bay and for $23, I didn’t have to work hard to talk myself into buying them. (I didn’t have to work too hard to talk myself into buying Lush’s Ocean Salt Face and Body Scrub or their Sweetie Pie shower jelly or a Stila eyebrow pencil either, yesterday. It was a spendy day. I got my hair cut and coloured too.)

It’s a good thing I didn’t get over to the Japanese store full of weird and wonderful things like paper balloons and washi tape because a couple weeks ago I found a couple great Canadian online sources for washi tape, Omiyage, which has gotten even more and an even awesomer variety since I bought the tape below, and GreenMunch, which I haven’t bought from yet, but which has some of the coolest eco friendly things I’ve seen in ages alongside a fairly impressive collection of washi tape and bakers twine.

Washi Tape and thread

The thread didn’t come from Omiyage, but from Hawthorne Threads. It’s more drinking-the-koolaid: Aurafil thread. I still haven’t tried either of the spools of it that I’ve got, but I bought this one for quilting a project that I haven’t started yet. (A quilt for my mom, using honeycombs of Happy Go Lucky fabric.) I didn’t order the thread on it’s own. No. No… I bought another pile of fabric to try to put together that baby quilt for an old friend that I talked about in the early days of this bout of stress shopping. On the last go around, I started with 12 fabrics plus a backing material and then only liked 4 of them enough to put them to use in the quilt top. And I’d said I was going to try “shopping my stash” to fill out the rest of the quilt, but I didn’t do that even a little bit. Nope. These were the 12 fabrics, of which only the four in the centre row were going to get used (and four of which have since been re-purposed into the aforementioned Star Surround quilt):

009

And these are the new purchases, of which… some, but not all, will get used:

Fabric Stash

The obvious outs are:
– the white with green loops, Bekko by Trenna Travis for Michael Miller, which feels more like home decor weight (and is 50+ inches wide, so probably is) (and I have no idea what I’ll do with a half yard of home decor fabric in those colours, it doesn’t match anything in my house!)
– the blue and white cross-hatch fabric, from Mini Mikes for Michael Miller, which is just the wrong sort of blue, somehow
– the aqua text print, from Remember by Carina Gardner for Riley Blake, which is also the wrong sort of blue
– the blue running stitch print, from Michael Miller (I forget which line), which is also (say it with me) the wrong sort of blue

I’m left with this batch of fabrics (including the original four):

Fabric Stash

…which does come out to 12 fabrics and which, despite it’s range of blues and reds (the rope letters one is a very orange red compared to the more blue reds in the rest), somehow feels a little more cohesive to me. I may yet dig through my stash for a third green and another orange to tie those colours in a little better or maybe I’ll throw in a scrap or two here and there of fabrics that play with two or more of these colours, so that it’ll all feel a bit more like it fits, but overall, I think it’ll work (with all the extra white fabric that I’m planning to introduce). Now I just have to get it started!

[The unnamed fabrics, for the curious, in that last circle photo are, from the centre, then up and around clockwise from the green/navy circular print: Spot On in Red, wide width for Robert Kaufman; Tile in Navy from Technicolor by Emily Herrick, Michael Miller; Stamen Stripe in Navy from Pure, Stof; Half Moon Stripe in White and Navy from Uno, Stof; Medium (?) Chevron Tone on Tone in Navy, Riley Blake; Small Dots in Navy, Riley Blake; Medium (?) Chevron in Boy, Riley Blake; Bubbles in Orange from Full Moon Lagoon by Mo Bedell, Andover; Small Dots in Red on White, Riley Blake; Sailors ABC in Flame from Out to Sea by Sarah Jane, Michael Miller; Pirate Stripe in Flame from Out to Sea by Sarah Jane, Michael Miller; Side Step in Green from Ikebana, Dear Stella.]

Does that seem like 1. Spending all the money ever and 2. acquiring increasing amounts of stash? Well, the second, certainly, but the money situation hasn’t shown itself to be too out of hand yet… but that’s only because that’s not the end of it all!

This also came from Hawthorne Threads and Bobbie Lou Fabrics, an Etsy shop that happened to have the elephant print in blue:

Fabric Stash

I stumbled over the elephant fabric on someone’s blog a couple weeks ago when I was checking out various Work-in-progress Wednesday posts. I am not a particular fan of elephants, I mean.. I’m all for elephants being in the world, but they affect me not at all. (Except that I really, really loved this elephant statue at the Calgary Zoo and I wonder how it fared in the flood in June.) But I have a friend who has an elephant obsession. She’s one of those people who owns jewellery and figurines and cookie jars and napkins and table trays and every other thing with an elephant on it. She loves them ridiculously, but only if their trunk is facing up. So I stumbled across that fabric and thought, Mandy will love that, I should make her some pillowcases.

All of the prints are from the Madhuri line by The Quilted Fish for Riley Blake. The two solids are Michael Miller’s Cotton Couture, in two colours who’s names I’ve forgotten. (Aqua and…?) I don’t know why I had to get SO MUCH of that fabric, I only needed two yards (one each of two prints) and a bit of something else to make two pillowcases, but instead I have two yards each of the elephants and one yard each of the prints and a half yard of the solids. Whatever thought was rolling through my brain at the time, I really can’t say. (And you’ll note I still haven’t made the pillowcases. So. Go me all around.)

That still still wasn’t the end because one thing I actually needed was enough fabric to make the binding on a quilt I’m working on, so I bought that from Mad About Patchwork, and since I was already there, I added a little more fabric to make it worth the shipping price. (That’s an old, old trick of mine. “I should just add a bit more to make the shipping cheaper per yard of fabric.”)

Stash

I forget what colour it is, but that beautiful red Kona Cotton is going to be a binding (maybe a boring binding, but it’s going to look stunning). The stripe is Kortek from Glimma by Lotta Jansdotter and the yellow is Dandelion from the same line. I saw a guy walking up the street wearing a windbreaker that inspired a mini quilt I intend to make with these two fabrics. (I have it drawn out an everything. Just need to get around to it…) (His windbreaker was not yellow, but black and white. Yellow felt more interesting.) And the final print is that lovely Pebbled Path from Indian Summer by Sarah Watson. That one was just because I like it and because it feels like it’d work for a low volume quilt.

Anyway, 1600 words later, I should really wrap this up. (I talk too much. Mostly its because I don’t have people in my day to day life to talk to about fabric and quilting and to spend time with on these hobbies, so I spew it all out here, where even if people are skimming they’ll still get it in a way the people I know don’t.)

Also, if you’ve made it this far, you should know that yesterday’s post about the Flags for Lac Megantic was my 150th post here at WIPGirl and as such, I’m going to run a give away. If you’d like to be entered, just leave a comment. Maybe you can tell me about something you’ve stashed recently – yarn or fabric or thread for some future project – or… whatever really. Just a comment of some sort. You don’t have to be a follower or anything, if you’ve popped by from one of the Work in Progress link-ups, you can feel free to enter as well. You’ll have to put in your email address to comment, so I’ll be able to contact the winner that way. The giveaway will likely be for something I’ve made, but to be honest… I haven’t really decided yet. (Let me know if you don’t fabric craft – if the winner doesn’t, I’ll make sure not to send fabric :D) Edited to say: I’ll draw a name next Wednesday, so you’ve got a week to get entered, if you’d like to be.

And finally, I’m linking up to The Needle and Thread Network and WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced:
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced