Sunday, June 30, 2013

Cosmo continues...

Whilst the other Squares were working away on their quilt-y projects (more on that later), I opted to continue my love affair with Cosmo! Luckily for you, I didn't snap a pic of every single step, but here are a few highlights.

The point where it actually looked like a bag instead of a pile of scraps with a tonne of interfacing!

 Moving on to a new colour - Bahama Blue lining! It even has pockets on the inside... a technological wonder that I don't think I've ever managed to include in previous bags!

I covered a button! Way easier than I ever imagined. Q-B and Q-D had a good laugh that I'd never done this before. What can I say? I don't make much in the way of clothing! The colour of the button was a controversy in itself. The pattern called for it to match the straps. Unacceptable to Q-D.

I have to say I'm pretty pleased with myself on this one. As I said in my last post, I've wanted to make this bag for a long time, but when I looked at the instructions, I felt overwhelmed! I can hardly wait to use it. Himself has decreed that it should be the new beach bag... only I should make another one with crabs all over it.... sigh... followed by shaking of the head.

So, back to the Squares!
Q-A was working on a project using another of her Sew Sisters fat quarter bundles. This one started out with strip piecing, as shown in the pic. The strips are then cut down into squares which are sliced on the diagonal and then re-assembled in a scrappy way. I suspect she'll plan that scrappiness. It'll be a plappy quilt?! 

Somehow, I didn't get a pick of any of the projects Q-B brought with her (and there were a lot!) She finished a souvenir from her Australian adventure... lots of cool Aboriginal inspired fabrics. I think she might even have decided that it's no longer destined to hang on a wall in her office! And she got to work on a zillion and one placemats!

Q- D continued the madness that is her confetti quilt (which I would actually call her spreadsheet quilt). This quilt is sponsored by MSExcel. Or by Pinterest. Yikes... so much planning. But it will undoubtedly be beautiful. I don't think I'm going to convince Q-D to join an improv group any time soon!

Another lovely day sewing with the Squares... can't think of many better ways to spend a torrential downpour!

And in case all this wasn't enough, my latest Kona bundle arrived. Berry inspiring!

That's raisin, eggplant, crimson, and berry.  I don't know what's better - wondering what will come this month or finding out! More about that here.

Keep calm and sew on, my friends!


Friday, June 28, 2013

Cosmo - Bringing two loves together...

So, we all know I have some issues with Kona solids...

When there's no more room in the cubby, does that mean I have to stop buying them?

What about the scrap bin... it's not truly full if I can still get the lid on.

But did you know have a thing for Amy Butler prints? I've been trying really hard to use up my Amy stash. I covered my fabulous ironing board cover, whipped up a thread catcher for workshops, and made a queen size qui-vet (more to come on what exactly a qui-vet is!) With so many of my current projects hitting the unwieldy quilting stage, I thought it might be fun to switch it up a little.

Enter more Amy Butler... this time from her book, Style Stitches.I've been coveting the bag on the front cover ever since I first bought this book... we all know that would have been sometime in 2011! Here's where my two loves come together. I chose a floral print A.B print (Water Bouquet in midnight) and two Konas: Peapod for the exterior accent and Bahama Blue for the lining.
 After 2+ hours of cutting, I finally had all my pieces ready to go last night. I decided to save the iron on interfacing for this morning when my brain was a little fresher! A good plan, since it took me another hour to get them all fused!

Now, on to the fun bit - sewing! If you've never used an Amy Butler pattern, you should know that they are DETAILED. The Cosmo bag has 14 steps, each one broken down into anywhere from 6 to 11 sub-steps. And it's listed as being easy. God help me if I ever decide to make the difficult patterns!

Here's one of the early steps that I'm particularly proud of... pleats!

I called it a day at Step 6g. Honestly, I don't know what to do next and am in desperate need of my Q Squares to help me figure out Steps 6h to k!

But here she is so far... glamorous, non?

Hope the sun is shining where you are and that you're sewing up something fun these days!


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

WIP - The summer begins...

How is it that summer has finally arrived just as I get to the sweatiest (sorry, people) part of the quilting process in the majority of my projects? For those of you who have never quilted a queen size quilt in 25+ degrees with 80% humidity, you haven't lived. I'd like to think it has weight loss effects... 

Mme S-S's retirement quilt - Tonnes of progress has been made! I finished the blocks for the top over the week-end and even pieced a back with the remaining fabric. I've even got it layered and ready to quilt. I'm a little stumped - suggestions welcome!


K's Dare - Went on a FART (Fabric Acquisition Road Trip) last Friday, but was unsuccessful in the
search for backing fabric. I ended up buying a whack of Kona (Peacock). It's not exactly what I had in mind, but options for fabric shopping in person are pretty limited in my city! I had to get a move on since the birthday looms large on the horizon!
And yes, I do measure and label all the fabric in my stash! Early on in my quilting, I got tired of measuring pieces of fabric to see if I had enough. I won't go into all the details, but there is colour-coding (those who know me would not be shocked by this!).

 Transformer - No progress
Ocean Strata - No progress
2013 M1 quilt  - Top is completed, layered, and ready to quilt. Part of me wants to get this little job out of the way even though it doesn't really have to be done until September!

Warm/Cool HST - No progress.

And two new projects for the list...

Lunch Box Challenge (mine) - Batting and backing are purchased, just needs to be layered. I think I'll wait until I have K's Dare and Mme S-S's quilts well in hand before I layer and quilt!

Lunch Box Challenge (not mine)  - Why do I have two Lunch Box Challenge quilts, you ask? Well, a member of our guild became ill this year and passed away just after the Lunch Box Challenge reveal. Her quilt was homeless... her intent had been to donate it to someone with mental illness. When the call went out for someone to quilt it, I put my name forward. I didn't know this sweet little lady well, but I'd like to think that someone would do the same for me! I'd show you the full quilt, but it's already folded/rolled and ready to quilt. If you look carefully, you'll see what happens when you don't plan carefully when buying backing!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

She's back!!! and a WiP

It's two-two-two posts in one!

I am pleased to say that I'm back in the studio. With report cards, class trips, and everything else work related finished, the summer can officially start. Though Mother Nature seems to be disagreeing with me around these parts!

Mme S-S's retirement quilt - I admit it. I gave up. Not fully, mind you, but I did abandon that lovely/cursed Paris map print. It just didn't play well with others. The new fabric arrived two days ago and is already washed and ironed. I chose fabrics from the Bonjour Mon Ami by Amanda Murphy. It seemed fitting from one amie/prof de français to another! My plan is to make a Wonky Stripe block à la Elizabeth Hartman. Mme S-S officially retired this week, so her present will be a smidge late... I think she'll forgive me!

K's Dare - Found out that Miss K is rockin' a queen size bed and got to work on more blocks. Have now finished the quilt top. Just need to buy backing and batting to move on... less than a month to go to the big day!

Transformer - No progress
Ocean Strata - No progress 
2012 M1 quilt - COMPLETED and already on display in my classroom!
2013 M1 quilt  -Top is well on it's way to done, just need to create the panel for the class name & year

Warm/Cool HST - No progress. Oddly enough, it seems I need more fabric scraps. How can this be possible?! I may need to call in the Squares to help me out on this one!

So that's what's happening with all those "hurry up and finish it" items... I have the say that I'm feeling the urge to start some fresh, new projects. With only two quilts with clear deadlines, who knows what will happen!

Happy Wednesday all!


Monday, June 17, 2013

Lunch Box Challenge

Remember a while back, I mentioned that I had finished a quilt for my guild's Lunch Box Challenge? And that I couldn't post pics because it was top secret? Well, the reveal has come and gone, so it's safe to release pics into the blogosphere!

Here's how it worked:
1) Place two metres of fabric in a lunch box.
2) Hand it in to the coordinator.
3) Get a different lunch box back.
4) Make a lap-sized quilt top, adding fabric as needed or desired.
5) Reveal months later!

I received a metre each of the red floral and the striped fabrics. They're not what I'd choose, but honestly, that's pretty much the challenge! I figured I just had to combine my style with these fabrics... since I really didn't feel like I could take on techniques (think endless appliqué) that just weren't me and have a successful piece come out of it.

I took the block (Pinball Machine) from Modern Blocks. When I first made it, I really didn't like it! But I had already cut the fabric and there was no chance at a do-over. So on I went! When I determined that I didn't have enough fabric to make enough blocks, I brought some of my trusty Kona. It makes the whole thing less busy as well. That's Sunflower (in case you were wondering!)

I love the quilt top I got in return. Nurse M (ret) and I have known each other for a while through a certain nursing home that will go un-named and Girl Guides. We chat fairly often at guild meetings. I had NO idea she had my lunch box... sneaky, sneaky Girl Guides! I gave her one metre of floral batik along with a half metre of co-ordinating batik dots and a tone on tone orange.

Not too shabby! I am really looking forward to quilting and using this one!

Ever done a challenge like this? How did it turn out for you?