17 February 2012

Flowers and bees

Remember the Retro Flowers block for the Love Circle at do. Good Stitches?  It has been unsewn, has had seams pressed open (they were side-pressed) and has been sewn back up again.  It has also been  joined by a sister block:

I pieced those lovelies last night while watching old episodes of The Office (US) and Saturday Night Live with the hubby.  We usually watch old episodes of Being Human (UK) or Walking Dead (we got our fix earlier this week now that new episodes are being aired), but last night I was in the mood to be amused.

Today's agenda involves whittling down my other bee/swap commitments.  This includes, but is not limited to, making a test block, then cutting into this lovely Rendezvous fabric for the Aqua and Red Bee (I may save the gray and black dots for the binding, but the jury's still out on that decision):

and cutting up these old work shirts my husband was going to recycle (due to various stains and tears) for the Design Camp [think outside the block] Swap:

All will be packaged tonight and will go in the post tomorrow.  Some of the packages are going overseas, so there may be tardy arrivals due to the short month.  

11 February 2012

So much to do, so little time

February is busy, busy with bee/swap commitments, charity and retreat planning for the BAMQG guild, and chairing Girl Scout cookie sales for Martina's troop.  Egads, why is February a short month?  

I managed to eek out a couple of bee blocks, but neither are ready to be shipped off.  In my previous post, I shared my Retro Flowers test block for the do. Good Stitches Love Circle.  I didn't press the seams open, so I'm either going to make the block again, or take the test block apart and re-sew with seams pressed open. 

February's Piece Bee theme for Lynne is tropical fish.  My inspiration was this picture of an Emperor Angelfish.  Lynne wanted bright colors and indicated batiks were okay.  I raided my stash and found some fabric I bought for my brother-in-law's Deadhead quilt (which I have yet to design, much less start).  The block feels very murky instead of the bright and colorful block Lynne requested.  I think I'm going to start over.

Blocks for Aqua and Red Bee (Flying Geese for Dawn) and Design Camp Swap (shipping containers for Jaime) blocks are also due this month.  Plus, I've also got to make test blocks, then cut up and ship out fabric for these same two bees, since March is my month for both. Thanks goodness the BAMQG retreat is coming up- it's going to be all about the bees and swaps for me.

Amidst all these deadlines, Jen and I have been trying to organize quarterly projects and track the piecing, quilting and binding of the guild's charity quilts.  When we first met to discuss the program launch in December, we settled on a target of 2 quilts per month.  We've got such enthusiastic members that 3 completed quilts are already done.  We've also got 6 quilts out amongst guild members in various stages of completion, and the first quarter isn't even up!  We are a guild of over-achievers!

03 February 2012

This is only a test

The past few nights have been spent working on the February block for the Love Circle at do. Good Stitches.  It's from the beautiful Retro Flowers Quilt pattern, donated to the group by the designer herself, Christina at The Sometimes Crafter.  Thanks for your generosity Christina! 

Because the construction involves curves, I decided to make a test block first to smooth out any difficulties.  I'm not afraid of curves (this quilt was the second quilt I made and has curves galore), but it's been awhile since I've sewn them.

The block turned out fine, but I think I'll have to give myself a little more wiggle room when cutting out the solid corner pieces of each sub-unit.  Also, I'm a press-to-the-side quilter, and I didn't see the bit about pressing all seams but the curved seams open until after I finished the block.  It never occurs to me to press open... old habits die hard.  And there are some tension issues that need to be addressed (a result of my two year old fiddling with the stitch tension knob).

So back to the cutting mat for me.  Guess I know what I'll be doing while the little one naps this afternoon.