Wednesday, October 1, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Round Up

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
I have so much to tell you guys today, so let's get right to it!


1. I finished my Modern Solids Challenge quilt! I'll be posting more about it very soon, but here's a sneak peak.

2. Yes, I am doing a Fair Isle sew-along! I'm dying to make one with a red background and white and gray design elements—and I can't wait to make it along with you all. At this point I'm thinking the first post (which covers the cutting) will be up on Oct. 23 and the final post will be on Dec. 4, which means you'll have it finished in time for a few weeks of Christmas enjoyment. I'll have an official announcement of the sew-along in the next week or two, along with all the details you'll need. In the meantime, you can buy the pattern here.

3. This week I'll be getting this stack back out, for another quilt-along that I'm doing on We All Sew, Bernina's blog. I've got such a fun design planned for this one too, in Bari J's lovely Emmy Grace line for Art Gallery.

4. And. And. As the Modern Solids Challenge winds down, why not give myself another challenge, right? My friend Jemellia of JemJam and I have decided to have our own little "Bernina-Off" during the month of October. Jemellia and I have the same machine, a Bernina 750, so we thought it would be fun to try making some the same things this month to see who can do it faster/better/stronger/amazing-er. The catch? Jemellia wants to make clothes. Yes! Clothes! Okay, deep breaths. : ) But the truth is, I have long wanted to make more clothing, and this seemed the perfect way to force myself out of my little quilty box. So I am (gulp) going to make some clothes in October. I don't under any circumstances expect to make clothing faster/better/strong/amazing-er than Jemellia, but I'm looking at it as a sort of garment-making boot camp. Stay tuned! I promise to post the results even if they are disastrous! You'll be able to follow our progress both here, Jemellia's blog, and on Instagram (here's my feed and here's Jemellia's).

5. Finally, I just have to share something with you guys: My September was pure insanity. It really was. I was way overcommitted, especially given that I was still trying to catch up from being gone so much over the summer. As a result, many things (both quilty and personal) seemed to slip last month, and I've struggled with the thought that I haven't been doing everything to the best of my potential. But it's a new month—a fresh start. And see that stuff up above, items #2 through 4? That's all I'm committed to for the whole month of October, and it feels pretty good. I'm always trying to hit the right balance of work and family and "just for me" stuff. I was way off balance in September. But all we can do is tell ourselves we'll do it better next time, right?

I can't wait to see what YOU'RE working on this week! Here's how to link up:
1. Link up any blog post or Instagram photo from the past week that features an unfinished work-in-progress (WIP).
2. To link an Instagram photo, click the Instagram icon at the bottom of the link-up screen, and use the URL of your IG feed as the link (for example, my URL is www.instagram.com/freshlypieced). Please hashtag #wipwednesday and mention me, @freshlypieced
3. If you are linking to a blog post, please link back here to my blog somewhere in your post.
4. Comment on at least a few of the other WIP Wednesday links, either IG or blog—commenting on the two or three links directly before yours works well to make sure everyone gets comments!


Friday, September 26, 2014

Playful Petals Blog Hop

Some of my favorite quilt books lately are the ones that take a basic concept—like, for example, a simple petal shape—and turn out all of these amazing, innovative, inspiring designs using that concept. That's why I'm so excited to be part of the Playful Petals blog tour today! 

Playful Petals, by Corey Yoder of Little Miss Shabby, is a perfect example of all the creativity and beauty that can come from something as simple as a petal shape.

When Corey asked me to be a part of the blog tour, I was a little nervous. I'm no appliquér. I've done a few small appliqué projects here and there, of course, but it's hardly my thing. But. Such cute projects! Such an inspiring book! How could I say no?

Fortunately, every single project in Playful Petals has a full-size quilt design and a mini/pillow design. So you always have the option to make something small. As a novice appliquér, I especially love that. Much less intimidating. : ) I made the Daisy Fields pillow from the book. Corey's use of bright, scrappy prints throughout the book is always inspiring, so of course I had to go in that direction with my version as well. 

And you know what? Appliqué is much easier than I remembered it being. I followed Corey's suggestions in the "Appliqué Basics" chapter of Playful Petals—she gives some excellent tips there. I probably complicated things for myself by deciding I had to blanket-stitch my petals—straight stitch would no doubt have been easier. But with the yarn-dyed linen background, I wanted to do something that complimented a more home-spun look. 


Bikes! So cute!

I think my Bernina 750 helped make the appliqué task much easier as well. That machine does some seriously beautiful blanket stitching, despite my minimal expertise. This blanket stitching isn't perfect, of course, but I think this is my first time attempting it in at least three years, so I'll take it! 

I'm so pleased with my finished Daisy Fields pillow! 

Be sure to check out blog posts about Playful Petals from everybody on the hop. The schedule is below:
September 15: Amy @ Stitchery Dickery Dock
September 16: Melissa @ Happy Quilting
September 17: Jessica @ Quilty Habit
September 18: Faith @ Fresh Lemons Quilts
September 19: Amy @ Diary of a Quilter
September 22: Sherri @ A Quilting Life
September 23: Amber @ Gigi’s Thimble
September 24: Lori @ Bee in My Bonnet
September 25: Amanda @ Crazy Mom Quilts
September 26: Lee @ Freshly Pieced - Me!!!
September 27: Corey @ Little Miss Shabby - blog tour wrap-up and giveaway!

Thank you, Corey, for having me on your blog hop today! : )

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Color and More Color

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
September is rolling right along, and I'm down to just two deadlines left for the month!


My Modern Solids Challenge quilt is coming along nicely. I paper-pieced these pyramids and I'm really liking the look of them.

And applique is something I rarely do, but I'm tackling it this week as part of the blog tour for Corey Yoder's book, Playful Petals. The projects in this book are irresistible, even for a non-appliquer like myself. : ) So now I've got these beautiful petals all cut out and ready to go. Come back on Friday to see what they turn into!


This week's WIP Wednesday is brought to you by Marmalade Fabrics, always one of my favorite fabric shopping stops. Marmalade has both solid and print bundles as part of their "Around the Color Wheel" monthly bundle subscription service, which is wonderful for those looking to build their stashes! (You can also buy the bundles individually.) Marmalade also has tons of gorgeous Cotton + Steel prints just in.

And now, what are you working on this week? Here's how to link up:
1. Link up any blog post or Instagram photo from the past week that features an unfinished work-in-progress (WIP).
2. To link an Instagram photo, click the Instagram icon at the bottom of the link-up screen, and use the URL of your IG feed as the link (for example, my URL is www.instagram.com/freshlypieced). Please hashtag #wipwednesday and mention me, @freshlypieced
3. If you are linking to a blog post, please link back here to my blog somewhere in your post.
4. Comment on at least a few of the other WIP Wednesday links, either IG or blog—commenting on the two or three links directly before yours works well to make sure everyone gets comments!


Thursday, September 18, 2014

Modern Solids, Traditional Inspiration - A Challenge

Remember this yumminess? Denyse Schmidt's Modern Solids from Free Spirit Fabric. I admit, I was reluctant to even take these fat quarters out of the box! They were just too delicious all together like that.

But eventually I did take them out, because you guys, I've got a challenge to win. : )

Free Spirit and Coats and Clark are sponsoring a friendly little throw-down among some of your favorite quilt bloggers: The Modern Solids, Traditional Inspiration Challenge. We've been tasked with making a modern 60" x 60" quilt, based on a traditional design. And you blog readers will all get to vote on your favorite quilt at the end! My competitors are:

John of Quilt Dad
Latifah of the Quilt Engineer
Heather of Olive and Ollie
Holly of Bijou Lovely

Ha ha. No pressure, right? : )

Of course, you can't hand me a rainbow box of solids and not expect a color-gradient quilt to come out of it. My plan is kind of what you see above, but it's kind of more than that, too. Stay tuned. ; )


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Disclosures

In addition to my paid sponsors, I sometimes accept free fabric, notions, or tools in exchange for posting about it on this blog or my other social media platforms. But I pledge that this practice will never change one of my product reviews or lead me to use fabric or other items that are not "my style."

I also am an Amazon Affiliate and receive compensation for items ordered via my Amazon links.

Copyright and Permissions FAQ

Can I make a quilt that looks just like one of yours? Of course! You don't need my permission for that. But remember, it's polite (and helpful to others) to credit your source of inspiration.

Can I share one of your photos on my blog or website? Probably! But please contact me for permission first. Use of my photos for commercial purposes is prohibited.

Can I pin your photos to Pinterest? Yes, please do! I love Pinterest!

Can I sell individual items made from your tutorials or patterns? Yes! But please don't open a factory and start churning out hundreds of them. : ) And please do not reproduce or sell the patterns or tutorials themselves. Thank you!