21 September 2015

Uncle Frank's shirts

My mother came to the States from the Philippines in the early part of the 1960's to study.  Her Uncle Tony (my godfather) was the only member of her family who was already here (at that time), but he traveled a lot.  Frank and his wife Sarah were close friends of Uncle Tony.  They had 3 daughters of their close in age to my mother, and so she was taken under the wing of the Reyes family and became part of their family.

Uncle Frank passed away earlier this year.  My parents were heartbroken, as they were in the Philippines at the time.  Uncle Frank's daughters gifted my dad with a few of his woven shirts, and my parents offered them to my husband, thinking he might wear them.  I quickly stepped in and told Ken to take them because I knew what I wanted to to do with them.  I think I'll add two more rows to make it a little longer (pardon the horrible cell phone picture):

It's harder than you think cutting up the shirts of someone who meant so much to your family and is now gone.  It took a while for me to take the rotary cutter to them.  And it was quite emotional cutting and then piecing them together.  I know they're just shirts, but they're not just shirts.  Does that make sense?

Anyway, I'm pleased to make a quilt for my parents to remember a dear family friend.  There is a sense of urgency for me to complete this quickly because my dad will begin radiation therapy in a couple of weeks.  I'd like him to have a quilt to snuggle under while he rests in his recliner in front of the television.

15 September 2015

Let me esplain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up.

This little old blog has been collecting dust.  Much has happened since my last post: we took the kids on vacation to several national parks and to a family reunion; my husband and I went to Bavaria and Prague; I ran a half marathon; I went back to work for 4 months then "retired" again because we moved to Texas; more travel after our move to Texas, and the little one started kindergarten.  This left so little time for blogging.

Now that you're caught up, here's a quick rundown on the status of things I was working on and finished, or started and completed since the last post in May:

My "41" quilt, which was my epic Sis Boom fabrics project, which I finished and it lived on my bed until we moved.  It has since been appropriated by Martina for her bed, since she claims it looks better in her room than in mine.  Here it is looking gorgeous on the lawn:

My Delectable Mountains quilt top for do. Good Stitches was pieced together at a retreat in June.  Quilting it is at the top of my sewing list.

My Friendship x and + swap blocks were temporarily lost, then found again, as I was unpacking my sewing paraphernalia after the big move.  Hooray!  I finished all 64 blocks and sent Jennifer her half. Jennifer finished her quilt (see her beautiful work here) while I completed my quilt top.  Pardon the grainy photo... I took it with my iPhone, which got wet when I slipped into a creek on a hiking trip this summer.  It hasn't taken a good photo since.

I participated in *a few* swaps.  It got to the point where my whole family was exasperated that I would start another swap item immediately after finishing one, and my little one was ever on the lookout for a swap package delivery from the postman.  I won't post photos of all of the completed swap projects because they are so numerous, but you can find them on IG (I'm @little_mama_d) if you have the inclination and patience to scroll through my feed.  Here are a few of my favorites:

I designed and made this mini quilt for the #AnnaMariaHornerMiniQuiltSwap on Instagram .  It was terribly hard putting this one in the post.

This mini and zippered pouch were designed and made for the #cottonandsteelminiquiltswap on IG:

This mini was designed (loosely based off of Aunt Rachel's Star quilt block) and made for the IG #rainbowminiquiltswap.  This was the first time I'd used variegated quilting thread.  I will definitely be using it again.

I hope you enjoyed this little recap of my makes over the past year.  Have you participated in any swaps lately?  What is your favorite swap item that you've made?

14 May 2014

In the works

The Bay Area is in the midst of a late spring heat wave.  It's 93˚ as we speak.  My poor tomato plants have wilted, causing an emergency run to the nursery for row cover.  Thankfully, the house stays pretty cool, thanks to many mature trees in the yard providing shade.  Luckily, the forecast shows temperatures cooling off by the end of the week.

My do. Good Stitches quilt has sat basted and ready for quilting since Friday.  The thought of handling a quilt in this heat is unbearable, so I've kept myself busy working on quilt blocks.  Aren't those japanese x+ blocks (tutorial at Badskirt Amy) all over blogland, flickr and instagram so cute?  They've been on my to-make list since I first made a trio of them for Ara Jane's do. Good Stitches quilt.

I'm finally getting around to making my own quilt based around those ubiquitous blocks!  Jennifer and I decided to join the Friendship x and + Swap party (albeit really late).  We are using only Art Gallery fabrics in our friendship quilt, which is fitting since we first bonded over Art Gallery fabric a couple of years ago.

Here is the first block:

Doubles are made so one can be kept, the other exchanged.  Two down, six more to go for this month's blocks.  Maybe more if we decide to accelerate the block-making process so that we can finish the quilt tops in September along with the other members of the Friendship x and + Swap.

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.  Head on over there to check out some really inspirational projects in the making!