30 May 2012

Dash to the finish

Not one to buck the system, I find myself sewing like mad to finish up my monthly sewing commitments.  Going into this last week of May,  I still have an apron for a swap with a fellow guild member, and blocks for Piece Bee and Design Camp.  I've been blocked (har-har) coming up with ideas for the two remaining bee blocks.  It was pretty much anything goes for both, and I find that challenging. 

My Design Camp block is hot off the machine.  Christine requested playful "bumper sticker" blocks.  Something to make her smile or giggle without being too raucous.  Tough one.  There were a few phrases I considered, but my sense of humor leans towards the inappropriate.  After much dithering, I settled on "Cheers!"  Because I'd waited until just about the last minute to start, there was a steep learning curve on free-form piecing the letters.  A few mistakes were made, but all in all, not too bad.

I'd gotten as far as C-H-E-E, then suddenly this Mike Meyers character popped into my head.  Twist!  I just had to make this:

It came out a *tad* large (10"x21"- yikes!) because of the change-up.  Hopefully, Christine can make it work.

I'm still agonizing over my Piece Bee block.  Alli's theme is "Favorite thing."  How to narrow it down to one?  I love so many things, and I honestly can't decide what one thing is THE favorite.  Probably over-thinking this one.

I suppose I should get started that apron.  If I could just remember where I (mis)placed the pattern and fabric...

23 May 2012

What's a Girl to do?

So much eye candy coming in on flickr and blogland from Quilt Market!  I have spent some serious time living vicariously through anyone who posted photos from the weekend.

Sample Spree sounds like madness.  I love fabric just as much as the next gal, but I don't know that I want to go into the fray for it.  But to those who braved it, kudos to you!  I guess if you're lucky enough to go to Market, you should experience Sample Spree at least once.

Seeing previews of upcoming collections has me in a bit of a quandary.  I've been wanting to buy a few OOP collections I've found on Etsy and a couple of online fabric shops.  But the photos from market have me drooling.  My quandary is this: do I spend my small fabric allowance on the sexy new stuff, or do I buy the FQ bundles of older collections not widely available anymore?

In sewing news, which I have to keep short because of an adorable 2-year old demanding attention, here are a few bee blocks I've finished:

For the Love Circle of do. Good Stitches, Deb pointed us to this tutorial and asked for Patchwork Wheels in bright prints.  I love scrappy blocks, and these were really fun to make.

Robin sent pre-cut squares and asked for Granny Squares for her Aqua and Red Bee blocks.  I had a little bit of a discrepancy after squaring up the blocks, which I'm sure is obvious in the picture.  I used a scant 1/4", so I'm not sure why they didn't square up correctly.  Anyway, I love the fabrics she sent- very pretty!

14 May 2012

The happy campers return

Mother's Day weekend was spent camping with Martina's Girl Scout troop.  It was the first time Martina and I had ever been camping, and it was great fun.  I love the outdoors, but when all's said and done, I like to be safe from bears and other wild animals, have access to running water, flushing toilets and such.  The trip to Live Earth Farm in Watsonville, CA was the perfect way to ease non-campers, such as Martina and myself, into communing with nature.

The previous weekend was the monthly meeting of the Bay Area Modern quilt guild, which I always leave feeling so inspired.  Afterwards, I felt the burning need to buy fabric, start a new project, and organize my stash.

The urge to buy fabric actually came before Saturday's meeting.  An hour before, to be exact.  I carpool with Julie of the Intrepid Thread, and I met her at her shop.  I purposely did not bring money in a paltry attempt to avoid buying fabric.  While we were waiting for the third person in our carpool to arrive, I saw Rhapsodia from Art Gallery Fabrics.  I fell hard. After the meeting, back at the shop, I found myself telling Julie "Paypal me, please."  I left with the beautiful bundle below.

I feel compelled to admit I had no intention of buying Rhapsodia.  I'm a huge Art Gallery Fabrics fan, but I thought I'd wait for the release of Indie for my next major fabric spree.  A SAHM has to carefully consider her purchases.  When I saw Rhapsodia face-to-face though, it was over.  This collection is gorgeous, and the photos online just don't do it justice.  I bought 1/2 yards of my favorite prints from the collection, plus enough yardage of this print to make myself a summer dress.

Last Sunday afternoon, I started cutting fabric.  Not Rhapsodia, which needs to be petted and admired for a while first, but Poetica.  (Remember this post?)  Martina bought a FQ bundle as soon as it was released.  This quilt at the BAM quilt guild meeting, made with Bespoken, was the push I needed to start her quilt.  Poetica has been petted and admired long enough.  Here's a sneak peek at what it will become:

Half of the blocks are done, and the remaining will be done in coordinating colors of Pure Elements.  Fingers crossed that I'll have the quilt top done by next month's guild meeting. 

As for the stash organization, that fell to the wayside.  Sleeping bags, flashlights, mess kits and a tent had to be acquired for the big camping trip.  Maybe this week.  Maybe.

01 May 2012

Potholder Envy

The last of my April swap/bee commitments was finished at the eleventh hour.  I started them Sunday evening, thinking I had plenty of time, that they didn't have to go out until Tuesday.  As I was sewing, that old calendar mnemonic popped into my head- "thirty days hath September, April, June and November..."  Panic!  I sewed into the wee small hours, turning in when all that was left was the binding.

I forgot that the two-year old always has separation anxiety from daddy and the big kids on Mondays, so I couldn't start the binding until his afternoon nap.  So you see, it's really Kieran's fault that I didn't finish my potholders in time to mail them by the deadline...

All kidding aside, I love the potholders and wish I was keeping them for myself.  My swap partner didn't post a mosaic and left it pretty open as far as requirements go.  She did mention the colors in her kitchen, so that was my starting point.  I then stalked her blog, mosaics she posted for other swaps, and her Flickr favorites.  Here's what I came up with:

They were paper-pieced using this block pattern.  I hope I'm not too much off the mark with the design.  These would look so perfect in my own kitchen.  I may just make them again.