Showing posts with label mini quilts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mini quilts. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Shimmering Birch Trees for the Shimmer Blog Hop

Hey there! Welcome to my stop on Jennifer Sampou's Shimmer blog hop!

You know, once upon a time, I thought I would never like metallic fabrics. But I also once thought I would never wear skinny jeans and never get tired of chevron prints. Never say never in fashion or quilting. : ) Metallics are totally on trend these days, and I'm loving them. Jennifer Sampou's new fabric line for Robert Kaufman, Shimmer, is metallics done right! 

Maybe it's the long, cold winter we've had here in Wisconsin, or maybe it's just the repeated viewings of the movie "Frozen" with my daughters, but when I saw the Shimmer line, I immediately thought of white on silver. A quick scan of my Pinterest inspiration boards led me to this lovely, minimal graphic composition, and suddenly I knew just what I wanted to do!

So I made this little birch tree mini quilt. It may seem an odd project for me to whip up at a time when winter is finally releasing its icy grip on my 'hood, but I guess this is my way of bidding the season goodbye. : ) The trees were very easy to piece improvisationally—I cut a large background square of silver Shimmer fabric and then slashed through it on angles to place the tree trunks. Ditto for the birch bark notches, with more Shimmer pieced into to those.

It was only when I was piecing the third and final tree that it hit me—what is the perfect counterpoint to a birch tree in the snow? Why, a cardinal sitting in its branches, of course! Even though the quilt was already almost done at that point, suddenly I had to have a cardinal.

I wanted the cardinal to be just a small accent, which meant I needed a relatively simple paper-pieced block, so that it was doable when reduced way down. This free block from McCall's (minus the bird's legs) fit the bill. I printed the templates at 30% size. Crazy small, but sure enough, it worked! I love itty bitty paper-piecing! The beauty of it is that you can do paper-piecing this small, and it's just as easy as when it's normal sized.

I finished my mini off with more Shimmer prints on the back and for the binding, plus some wavy line quilting. But I think the luster of the silver background print is really what makes this mini special. It shines. Literally.

Want to try some Shimmer for yourself? I'm giving away a charm pack of Shimmer prints—just leave a comment on this post to enter. I'll draw a random winner at the end of the week. And keep following the blog hop for more inspiration using this fabric line, and more chances to win! Jennifer is giving away a full fat-quarter bundle at the end of the hop!

April 1: Robert Kaufman/Jennifer Sampou
April 2: Janice Ryan- Better off Thread
April 3: Alissa Haight Carlton- Handmade by Alissa
April 4: Julie Herman- JayBird Quilts
April 5: Natalie Barnes- Beyond the Reef
April 6: Stash Books- C&T Publishing
April 7: Amanda Jean Nyberg- Crazy Mom Quilts
April 8: Me! You are here
April 9: Cheryl Arkinson- Naptime Quilter
April 10: Christina Cameli- A Few Scraps
April 11: Elizabeth Hartman- Oh Fransson
April 12: Faith Jones-Fresh Lemon Quilts
April 13: Gemma Jackson- Pretty Bobbins
April 14: Katie Blakesley- Swim Bike Quilt
April 15: Amy Smart-Diary of a Quilter
April 16: Laura Nownes, Jennifer Rounds, Pati Fried, Darra Williamson- See How We Sew
April 17: Holly DeGroot- Bijou Lovely
April 18: Jennifer Sampou-Wrap Up

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

WIP Wednesday: Sewing Summit Prep

It's been all about prepping for Sewing Summit around here this week. And I'm not even talking about all the work Elizabeth and I have done for the class we're teaching together!

Soon-to-be lounge pants
I got this adorable flannel for half-off at Joann's the other day. Can't wait to make myself some foxy lounge pants in Jana's class.

Maxi skirt fabric
This charcoal heather knit will soon become a maxi skirt in Leanne Barlow's class. I'm just glad to finally have this fabric in my hot little hands—I ordered it from on September 21, and they didn't ship it until yesterday. And that was only after I made a threatening phone call demanding that they overnight it, or else. What is up with them lately??

Curves mini quilt fabric
I picked out this happy stack for the Curves Mini Quilt class with Christina of The Sometimes Crafter. Most of these prints are from Art Gallery's fun new line, Floressence, paired with a texty background print from Mama Said Sew by Sweetwater.

Shapes and Angles pieces Last but not least, I can't wait to learn how to machine-piece hexagons, partial seams, equilateral triangles, and more with my friends Kati and Faith. For their class, I'm using some of the yummy new Kona colors, like Carrot, Citrus, Peapod, and Azalea.

I'm off to Salt Lake City later today, and I'm really looking forward to seeing friends both old and new! So if you're attending Sewing Summit, I would love for you to introduce yourself. I'll be hanging out in the sewing room during open sewing time most nights, and I would like nothing better than to see some of your WIPs in person instead of on a computer screen for once! So don't be shy. :) For those who didn't get into my Foundation Paper Piecing class with Elizabeth, I'll be doing a short informal class on foundation piecing in the sewing room on Thursday night at around 10 p.m.—come join in!

And even if you won't be at Sewing Summit, you can still share. Here are the linky rules:

1. Link up any post from the past week that features at least one unfinished work-in-progress (WIP).
2. Somewhere in your post, you must link back here to my blog. (Or grab my WIP Wednesday button for your sidebar.)
3. Comment on at least a few of the other WIP Wednesday links. Because what fun is a linky party without comments? : )

Can't wait to see some of you in Salt Lake City! Safe travels!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Lifesavers Quilt Places Third

Lifesavers mini quilt
Remember my Lifesavers quilt from the EZ Dresden Challenge blog hop? Well, guess what? It took third place in the challenge!

I am just floored that out of all the fabulous, creative, beautiful quilts entered, my little quilt placed. Even third place had the most amazing prize package—100 spools of Gutterman cotton thread in every color of the rainbow, a Sidewinder bobbin winder from Simplicity, two fat-quarter bundles from Robert Kaufman, batting from Fairfield, and rulers and a book from Darlene Zimmerman. And my quilt will be displayed in the Simplicity booth at Fall Quilt Market. Wow!!

It's been quite a month for me. My Supernova quilt went off to Houston to hang at International Quilt Festival, an honor I still can't quite believe. A quilt of mine is appearing in a new book coming out from Martingale. And now this. Seriously?? I can't believe all of this is happening to me.

Lifesavers mini quilt
I love designing and sewing quilts. I would do it even if this blog didn't exist, and even if I didn't have these amazing opportunities to see my quilts published or be selected for awards. Most of the time I feel like I just lucked into all of this. I mean, take a look at Pinterest or the Fresh Modern Quilts Flickr group—there are so many talented people out there, making some incredible quilts. The fact that my quilts have been singled out for some of these honors feels like it's due as much to happenstance as anything else. I was just in the right place at the right time. Or maybe my blog was. : )

But at the same time, I know I've worked hard on my quilts and on this blog, occasionally wondering why exactly I put all this time and effort in. I've stayed up until the wee hours of the morning sewing and blogging, because that midnight-to-2-a.m. slot was the only time I had that day to get anything done. Then things like this come along to make me feel like that time and effort was well-spent. So thank you, Salt Lake Modern Quilt Guild, the EZ Dresden Challenge judges, and the sponsors. You made my week!

You can see all the other EZ Dresden Challenge winners right here. The grand prize-winning quilt by Jenny Cameron is stunning! Congratulations to all.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Modern Mini Follow-Up

Woo-hoo! I'm a finalist in the Modern Mini Challenge! Thank you to Jennifer and the judges for selecting my quilt. I'm honored to be in such amazing company. The contest is now open for voting, so head over there to vote right now! If you'd like to vote for mine, of course I would be grateful, but all the finalists are phenomenal, so please vote for whichever one grabs you the most.

And Mr. Random says that the winner of my extra HSTs is comment #65, eamylove. Congrats, Amy, I'll send you an email. Thanks to everyone who entered. Although I have to say, the people who commented along the lines of "No way in HELL would I want those HSTs!" cracked me up the most. Can't say I blame you for not wanting to follow in my HST insanity! : )

Monday, March 5, 2012

Modern Mini Challenge Quilt: HST Extravaganza

Queen of the last-minute finish—that's me! My mini is done, with just a few hours to spare.

In the spirit of using what I already have, more than half of the HSTs in this mini were made last year—they were the "bonus HSTs," leftover from when I made my Supernova Quilt-Along quilt.  I trimmed them up, added a few more (mostly the greens), and ta-da, a mini was born! (But yes, it still took forever!)

The background and binding are Kona Coal, and I quilted it with simple straight lines along the seams. The completed mini measures about 20" square and the HSTs are 1.75" finished. I couldn't be happier with it! Thanks, Jennifer, for organizing this great challenge!

And one more thing—would you believe, after all of that, I still have more than 80 of these leftover HSTs? I think I've had my fill of them at this point, so would anybody else like to play with them? They're mostly blues, pinks, oranges, and yellows, and they need to be squared up (I squared mine up to 2.25" square). If you would like to give these HSTs a home, just tell me that in a comment, and I'll pick somebody tomorrow. (THE GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

WIP Wednesday: A Happy Week

Ah, it's been quite a week around here, in more ways than one! Lots of exciting things are afoot, but here's what I've got for you today.


Solids quilt. This is my first finished quilt of 2012—and I can't show it to you. How annoying. But I'm very pleased with it, and even more pleased that it's finished!

New projects:

Challenge mini quilt - Mark Cesarik was nice enough to send me a little preview of his upcoming line, Cosmic Burst. These vivid colors practically leaped out of the envelope all on their own–they're so fabulous! Can't wait to finish this mini and enter it in the Modern Mini Challenge at Ellison Lane Quilts.

No progress:
• Hexy mini quilt
• Do Good Stitches Asterisk quilt
• Gen X Quilters' Charmed Prints QA
• Halloween quilt
• Farmer's Wife QA
• Skill Builder QA
• Figgy Pudding quilt

This week's stats:
Completed projects - 1
New projects - 1
Currently in progress - 9

Your turn—link 'em up!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Modern Mini Challenge Inspiration

Welcome to my stop on the Modern Mini Challenge blog hop, hosted by Jennifer of Ellison Lane Quilts. We're here to inspire you and get you ready to make your own mini masterpiece for the Challenge!

My favorite mini that I've made? Definitely this little guy, which I made for Suz of Patchwork and Play as part of Doll Quilt Swap 10:

DQS10 quilt finished

Complexity. It's one of my favorite things about mini quilts. You can do things in an 18" square quilt that wouldn't be possible at a larger scale. A full-size version of this quilt would be stunning, no doubt about it. But would I have the patience for 30 or more 9"-square paper-pieced New York Beauty blocks? Hardly. : )

DQS10 quilt finished

But in my opinion, what really makes this quilt special are the fussy-cut centers—the beautiful swirly circular motifs from Tula Pink's Parisville collection. Without that fussy-cutting detail, this mini would be pretty standard. But those centers give it movement and drama. Which brings me to another thing I love about minis: A small detail like this might get lost in a larger quilt. But here, it's the star of the show—as it should be! Fun, right? So many design possibilities in something so small.

Okay, so are you getting ready to make your own modern mini for the challenge? Don't forget what's up for grabs—gift certificates to the Fat Quarter Shop and bundles of Flea Market Fancy! Squeal!! You have until March 4 to sew your own mini to enter in the Challenge. Click here to learn more about the schedule, the requirements, and the prizes!

And don't forget to keep following along with the blog hop. Happy sewing!

Feb. 6 - Stitchery Dickory Dock
Feb. 7 - Fairy Face Designs and Amy's Creative Side
Feb. 8 - Lily's Quilts
Feb. 9 - Patchwork Notes
Feb. 10 - Don't Call Me Betsy and Flying Blind on a Rocket Cycle
Feb. 11 - Sukie, Don't You Know Who I Am?
Feb. 12 - Freshly Pieced
Feb. 13 - From the Blue Chair and Poppy Makes
Feb. 14 - Needles, Pins, and Baking Tins
Feb. 15 - Mon Petit Lyons and Felicity Quilts
Feb. 16 - LR Stitched and Random Thoughts Do or Di
Feb. 17 - Life's Rich Pattern and Twin Fibers
Feb. 18 - Cut to Pieces and Sew Sweetness
Feb. 19 - Swim, Bike, Quilt

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Modern Mini Challenge

I'm sure you guys have heard about this by now, but just in case you haven't ...

Jennifer of Ellison Lane Quilts is having a Modern Mini Challenge. Inspiration, creativity, a giveaway, and Flea Market Fancy. Need I say more? Probably not, but I will anyway!

The Modern Mini Challenge is a 5-week series that kicks off with a blog-hop of inspiring minis by your friendly neighborhood quilt bloggers. I love mini-quilts because—I admit it—I'm a paper-piecing nerd. I love complex piecing. If somebody thinks I'm insane for trying a project, then I know I'm doing it right. : ) But the crazier a block is, the less likely I am to make a lot of them, so minis are perfect. And even if you don't see yourself tackling a New York Beauty block, minis are the ideal place to try something new and think outside of the box.

So, after we've got your creative juices flowing, let the challenge begin! You'll have two more weeks to create your own mini masterpiece and link it up at Jennifer's blog. And it better be good, because there are gift certificates to the Fat Quarter Shop and bundles of Flea Market Fancy on the line.

Click here to check out the schedule and all the details, and don't forget to follow along with the blog hop. Can't wait!

Feb. 6 - Stitchery Dickory Dock
Feb. 7 - Fairy Face Designs and Amy's Creative Side
Feb. 8 - Lily's Quilts
Feb. 9 - Patchwork Notes
Feb. 10 - Don't Call Me Betsy and Flying Blind on a Rocket Cycle
Feb. 11 - Sukie, Don't You Know Who I Am?
Feb. 12 - Freshly Pieced
Feb. 13 - From the Blue Chair and Poppy Makes
Feb. 14 - Needles, Pins, and Baking Tins
Feb. 15 - Mon Petit Lyons and Felicity Quilts
Feb. 16 - LR Stitched and Random Thoughts Do or Di
Feb. 17 - Life's Rich Pattern and Twin Fibers
Feb. 18 - Cut to Pieces and Sew Sweetness
Feb. 19 - Swim, Bike, Quilt

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

WIP Wednesday ... And We're Back!

Ah, it's good to be back to the normal routine, isn't it? My daughter is back in school, the hubs is back at work, everything's right with the world again. And, I have two completions! Considering that I took a month off from WIP Wednesday in order to complete them, it's a darn good thing. 

Completed (since last WIP Wednesday):

Summer Sampler Quilt
You saw this one here—I finally got motivated to finish it off and give it to my mother-in-law, who was recovering from surgery. It's nice to get this one off the list, and I no longer have any projects in the "Completed Tops Awaiting Quilting" category! Woot!

Mystery Quilt #2
Another big completion checked off the list.

New projects:
Mini-swap mini quilt
This mini was promised a while ago, and is part of a little private mini-swap. I'm not entirely sure where I'm going with it yet, but I'm digging the colors! (Hopefully the recipient will too.)

Pumpkin the elephant
I'm starting to teach my 5-year-old to sew! She really wanted to make a softy. I've never made a softy myself, so it's a learning experience for both of us. : ) This is from a Melly & Me pattern that I bought several years ago and never used until now. I was a little confused by the legs, but other than that it seems to be turning out okay (knock on wood). I've done the cutting, pinning, and applique stitches, but E. sewed all of the seams herself, with my guidance. She's doing fantastic! 

No progress:
• Gen X Quilters' Charmed Prints QA
• Halloween quilt
• Farmer's Wife QA
• Skill Builder QA
• Kaleidoscope QA
• Figgy Pudding quilt
• Wonky Log Cabin

This week's stats:
Completed projects - 2(!)
New projects - 2 (sigh)
Currently in progress - 10

Link 'em if you got 'em! You all know the rules - link back here, comment, etc. etc. Have a great week—it's good to be back!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

One More Summit Swap

I have one Sewing Summit swap item that I made, but unfortunately didn't complete in time to actually swap it in person at the Summit. Happily, Elizabeth's mini is all done now, and she has received it, so I'm free to share it! This was for my "roommate swap" with AnneMarie and Elizabeth. Elizabeth's mini is the same design as AnneMarie's (which you can see here), but in different fabric/colors.

As you might remember, each star is from Carol Doak's 50 Fabulous Paper-Pieced Stars, which features stars named after each of the states. So I went for the hard-core symbolism and did four stars: Wisconsin, Florida, Ohio, and Utah. One for each of our home states, and one for the state where we all met. I really love how both of these minis turned out!

I used yellow thread to quilt Elizabeth's, a decision I questioned after it was done. But now I like it and I'm glad I broke out of my usual thread rut. : ) And I love love love the stripey binding. I usually like to do striped binding on the bias, but this one just called out for straight-grain, and I'm really happy with the end result.

Here's the back, with several iterations of Dena Designs' Tarika. I love these prints.

Yay for roommates, sewing buddies, and friends. Thanks for a fun swap, ladies!

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Sewing Summit: Swaps

My two favorite things about Sewing Summit: Friends and fabric (in all its many forms). Happily, the weekend offered plenty of opportunities to combine the two!

Elizabeth of Don't Call Me Betsy, AnneMarie of Gen X Quilters, and I arranged a little in-person roommate swap. How often do you get the chance to exchange swaps in person? It was so fun to receive things made by my closest blog-friends-turned-real-friends. : ) From Elizabeth, I got this adorable hexagon zippy pouch with hand-quilting around the hexy. I'm determined to learn how to embroider someday soon, and this pouch will be perfect for my supplies!

The back is one of my fave blocks, the x and + block!

AnneMarie made me this gorgeous paper-pieced pillow from Heirloom. I LOVE Heirloom, so she definitely nailed it with this. It looks great on our couch too, as you can see. And guess what—there's a zipper in this, too. You ladies are totally putting the pressure on me to figure out those darn things! : )

Speaking of AnneMarie, here's something else she made me a while back, that I have yet to share, and which came in handy at the Summit. This sweet linen lingerie bag! How could you not love that underwear print? And the linen and decorative stitches are the perfect finishing touches.

And here's what I made for AnneMarie—yep, I'm still obsessing on the paper-pieced stars from Carol Doak's book 50 Fabulous Paper-Pieced Stars. Since all the stars in the book are named after states, I thought it would be symbolic and meaningful and just plain cool to use the Wisconsin, Florida, Ohio, and Utah stars in my mini-quilts for the girls. One star for each of our home states, plus a star for the state where the Summit was held. (No, that's not my awesome carpet in the photo. That would be the carpet at Little America hotel.)

I wanted Elizabeth to get the same thing, but in different fabric. Sadly, this plan was far too complicated to execute in the time I had available before leaving for the Summit. I knew I should try to come up with a simpler plan, but once I thought of the state-stars idea, I couldn't unthink it. I had to do it. But I'm hard at work finishing up Elizabeth's and I hope to get it in the mail to her in the next few days. Thanks for your patience, E!

Moving right along, Kristie of OCD gave me this insanely cute framed clutch while we were at Summit, as payment for creating a couple of blog buttons for her recently. LOVE the fabric, the flower, and the blue doodads on the frame. Also, this particular clutch is famous, because it's straight from Kristie's framed-purse tutorial for the Moda Bake Shop! Click here to see my clutch's 15 minutes of fame (and learn how to make one yourself!)

The inside of the clutch, with Kristie's cute label.

Here's a stack o' goodies I scored at the Summit FQ swap, organized by Kaelin of the Plaid Scottie. We were all expecting the swap to be a full-contact sport, but everybody was super calm and orderly. After the swap, several of us used our FQs to test Elizabeth's Rain-Man-like knowledge of fabric lines. That red and orange print in the bottom-right corner was the only one that stumped her! Anybody know it?

Yet another swap I participated in was the Color Wheel charm swap organized by Kati of From the Blue Chair. I would love to make a pixelated color-wheel quilt like Kati's, and with these charms, that should come together nicely.

I think that about covers the swaps. Come back tomorrow for my final Summit-related post: The swag, plus a swaggy giveaway!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Swap Happiness

Make Mine Modern swap, received:
As soon as I saw the name on the return address of the box my mailman dropped on my porch, I knew exactly what was inside and I did a little happy dance! I got all of these incredible items from Kaelin of The Plaid Scottie:

She made this pretty little mini in colors that were inspired by my sun pillow for Fat Quarterly. There's lots of Central Park in there, which is one of my fave lines! I love it!

I put it up in my sewing room right away, and as you can see, it's already getting along famously with my DQS quilt from Jess. : ) BTW, thanks to those of you who suggested hanging mini-quilts with good old straight pins. That's exactly what I did. I have a feeling I'll be adding to my wall collection over time, and that will require frequently moving around the existing quilts. So I needed something easy and simple that wouldn't damage the wall.

Kaelin also sent along a coffee sleeve and this incredible bag. She mentioned that she didn't know if I like linen—are you kidding me? How could I not love these? It's funny, I've never used linen in any of my projects, but I'm always in love with it when I see it used by other people. I guess I just haven't had the right project for it (yet), and I'm not quite sure what exactly to buy or where to buy it. But this bag makes me want to get my hands on some linen ASAP! Anybody have any linen recommendations?

Anyway, check out the adorable farmer's-market fabric she used in the hexies, and the hand-stitching, and that apple! It's all too sweet! Kaelin shared that when she lived in Chicago, they used to drive up to Wisconsin to go apple-picking, so that was her inspiration for this bag. Just lovely. : ) And I'm so happy to get a bag, because I'm just not much of a bag-maker. There's no way I could have pulled off anything nearly this cute and well-made!

The coffee cuff says, "Fuel," which is so spot-on for me it's not even funny, and she also threw in a Starbucks gift card. Thank you, thank you, thank you Kaelin! Everything is just perfect, and I guarantee the bag and coffee cuff will get loads of use.

And Make Mine Modern swap, sent:
Now that my partner's got her goodies, I can reveal that my rainbow placemats were for Kelly of Kelby Sews. Kelly's got a thing for rainbows, so I wanted rainbow colors to figure in there somewhere. And placemats were one of the things she mentioned wanting. When I saw that we had both Flickr-favorited Angela's Pink Lemonade quilt, I knew I had my plan!

I wanted to do two colors per placemat, so that meant I needed to make five of them. But these went quickly and they were so much fun to make! Anyway, when it comes to placemats, a larger set is just so much more useful. Plus, I liked the idea that if Kelly was using fewer of them, she could color-coordinate to her dishes, the season, her mood that day ... whatever.

Most of the fabric I used came from my scrap bins—I only had to supplement the red and the purple (I guess those must be the colors I use the least). The backs all came from my stash. I echo-quilted each one with the two colors used in the placemats, and that turned out to make a very cool pattern on the back.

Instead of traditional binding, I just wrapped the back around to the front and sewed it down. The corners were a little fiddly, but other than that, I think this method turned out okay—each one I did looked better than the last. And what a huge time-saver! I don't think I would use this method for quilts, but you might see it again from me for things like wall-hangings, placemats, etc.

Along with the placemats, I sent two little fabric baskets (more about those here), some fat-quarters of Circa 50 and Heather Ross's Spoonflower prints, a rainbow of thread, and some chocolate and local coffee (roasted just up the road from me).

And last but not least, I also got this today:

My first ever fabric postcard! This is from Becky of Becky's Blabber, as a thank you for the Supernova quilt-along! So sweet, thank you, Becky! It's beautiful! I believe that's going to find a place on my inspiration wall as well. : )
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