Monday, February 21, 2011

Innocent Crush - kaleidoscope quilt

My kaleidoscope quilt is finished!  I can't believe this is already my second finished quilt of 2011.
It was awfully cold out, but my sweet husband helped me grab a couple shots of it outside this afternoon.
I started with a fat quarter set and did not have quite enough to make it as large as I wanted it to be.  Though I rarely add more than one border, I added three to make the quilt larger.  I'm happy I did, I think it calms down and evens out the busy pattern.
I pieced the back in a couple coordinating solids paired with some small pinwheel blocks framed in gray.  I was glad that I could use some of the scraps on the backing.
The binding is another print from Innocent Crush.  As always, I use 2.75" strips, and then machine sew it to the front and then handsew it to the back.

quilt stats
fabric - Innocent Crush by Anna Maria Horner, Kona cotton in ash, egglant and navy
pattern - traditional kaleidoscope in a two block style
size - approx. 65" x 73"
quilting - machine quilted by me
As much as I want to keep it, this is a gift for a family member.  It'll be hard to give away, but I know she'll love it.

xo, Angela

Previous posts on the making of this quilt:

A later post about who I gave the quilt to:

Friday, February 18, 2011

back in business

My thread arrived yesterday afternoon.  I am done whining, I promise.  For now at least.  Now I can get back to my AMH quilt.  I can't wait to have it finished.  It may be my favorite quilt that I've made.  Do I say that about every quilt?  Oh, probably.


I am still chugging along on those Hope Valley string blocks.  I decided to take a break from them the other afternoon (the monotony of them sometimes drives me nuts!) so I made another Single Girl block for a second pillow.  This will go on Finley's twin bed along with the string quilt.  I also have some pink pom pom trim to use on this one.  Since so many of you asked for it, I'll try to take a few shots while I make the pillow and whip up a little tutorial on the art of pom pom trim installation.  I hope you sense the sarcasm in that statement, it is rather simple. :)


I hope you have a great weekend and that you get to squeeze in some sewing!

xo, Angela

PS - Here's the first Single Girl pillow, in case you missed it!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

being patient

I am having trouble being patient this week.  I am so anxious to finish up my Innocent Crush quilt.  As you can see, I decided to do use a meandering pattern, and it sure takes a lot of thread!  I only had a half a spool of gray thread, so as soon as I decided to quilt it this way, I quickly ordered some gray Gutermanns online.  But a week later, it is still not here.  Sigh. 
In the meantime, I've pulled out the string blocks I started last spring when I was still pregnant with Finley.  While I was planning her nursery, I originally thought I'd design her room around this line (Hope Valley by Denyse Schmidt).  Then I saw Joel Dewberry's Modern Meadow and all my plans went out the window.  The berry palette was my favorite, just perfect for a baby girl's nursery, and I ended up making this quilt instead. 
I'm excited to be working on these blocks again.  I am hoping to make a twin, and it will go on Finley's bed when she outgrows her crib.  The walls in the room she will move into are a soft gray, and I think this will look perfect in there.

Okay, off to get a little sewing in while she is snoozing.
xx, Ang

Monday, February 14, 2011

babycakes


It has been too long since I've shared some pictures with you of my little sweetie pie Finley.  She turned seven months this week, so we snapped a couple quick photos of her before we left for church this past Sunday morning.


I love these pictures.  She is at such a fun age, and her personality really shines through here.  And how cute is that little owl dress from Old Navy?  I bought that a couple years ago, thinking that I'd save it for the future, just in case.  We had two little men in the house at the time.  I do love owls, they make me think of my Mom.  She has had a collection of them in her house since before she had children.  Whether they are hip and trendy or outdated, I'll always like them because of her.


Doc snapped this shot just as we were leaving, and I love it.  Finley is so funny.  She has been crawling since 5 months and pulling up to standing position for a couple weeks now.  As cute as it is, I just wish she'd slow down!  These baby days go too fast.

Speaking of the baby, time to get moving.  Someone is ready for a nap.


Happy Valentine's Day, friends!
with love, Angela

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Single Girl pillow


Here is my first finished Single Girl block.  As much as I like the vintage sheets and Kona cotton in bone finished here with this pattern, I don't want an entire quilt with this much white in it.  I live in the country with a house full of boys, so this would be clean for about one day.  So what did I decide to do with it?  If you know me at all, you know the answer right away...


This is a pretty huge block, and I added some narrow borders to make it 24 inch square.  Then I layered, basted and quilted it (straight lines an inch and a half apart in my favorite design) and made a pillow!


I bought some of this Riley Blake pom pom trim a bit ago from Sew Deerly Loved, and I figured this pillow was just right for it.  The lime green with the vintage sheets in this patten is a perfect match, right?


The back is a simple envelope closure made from Essex linen/cotton blend in natural (I think).  Rather than folding and hemming the edge, it is trimmed in bias tape made from one of the sheets.


I only had 20" form on hand, so the pillow looks a little limp (for lack of better word, sorry!)  With the correct 24" form, it will make nice, oversized pillow for the couch or bed. 


I really do love the vintage sheets in this gorgeous pattern, and I think it would look great in a large Single Girl quilt.  I'm thinking about making a small version for Finley, but I might substitute it with a quilter's linen by Robert Kaufman.  I just ordered some swatches from Simply Solid Fabric, and I can't wait to see them in person.


Hope you are having a nice Saturday!
xo, Angela

ETA - I included links above to where you can find the pom poms and quilter's linen for those of you who are interested.  I know many of you will ask, so I'm one step ahead of you for once. ;) 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Single Girl practice block


I've been working on cutting out the templates for my Single Girl quilt the last couple of evenings.  It has been fun- Steve has been practicing guitar (he is self taught and recently began formal lessons) while I work on them.  I realize that some people find that kind of thing tedious, but I love it.  Maybe it takes me back to my teaching days (I taught elementary school before having babies).
  

I thought I'd make a test block, just to give it a try.  I didn't want to cut bunch of fabric for the quilt and then realize that I really didn't like it.  Or even worse, what if I really was terrible at sewing curves?  A test block was necessary, and I'm glad that I made one.  I cut into some beautiful vintage sheets from my friend Jeni and paired them with some Kona Bone leftover from my Flea Market Fancy quilt.  The creamy white compliments the pastels from the sheets perfectly.


Everything came together nicely, and I feel a little more confident with the pattern.  Now if only I could decide on the fabric, I'll be all ready to go.  I snapped these shots during the making of the block, but I ran out of sunlight before I was finished with the entire thing.  Gotta love those short winter days, hmm?

with love, Angela

Monday, February 7, 2011

Innocent Crush quit top


I finished up my Innocent Crush quilt top this weekend.  Let me just tell you, I am completely in love with this fabric.  I adore every single piece in this line.  The colors are so rich and vibrant, and the patterns play together nicely.  I really enjoyed every minute spent working on this.


Though I hadn't planned on it, I ended up adding three borders.  I usually don't add more than one (probably because I'm lazy and ready to be finished with it at that point), but this one really called for it.  I'm very happy that I did, it was worth the time and effort.


Now I'm almost done piecing the backing, so hopefully I'll get it basted by the end of the day.  I am thinking I might stipple this one.  I'm a little apprehensive about doing that on a quilt this size.  I've done it many times on smaller projects, but I imagine it is a little more difficult on a larger quilt.  Hmmm... I'll have to think about it some more.

I have to admit, this quilt is supposed to be a gift.  But I'm having a problem... I don't know if I can give this one away!  I really like it alot, both the fabrics and the pattern.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do.  Have you ever had that problem? 

Have a great Monday!
xoxo, Angela

PS - Keep your eye out for a fun giveaway later on in the week for all of you lovely readers who follow along over there <== in my sidebar.  I"m excited for this one!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

goals for 2011

This is one of those posts that I have been meaning to write for awhile.  But here it is, February 3rd already, and I'm just getting around to it.  I'm not quite sure where January went!

I love setting a couple goals for myself each year.  These generally are projects I hope to accomplish.  I try to be reasonable and only set a few goals that I think are achievable, and this year I have two. 


In terms of sewing, I'd really like to make a Single Girl quilt.  I bought this pattern by Denyse Schmidt early on last year, and other than pulling it out to look at it a couple times, I haven't done anything with it yet.  I have pieced several different blocks with curves over the years, but never an entire quilt.  Am I a little intimidated by this pattern?  Oh yeah.  Apparently I'm not the only one.  There is a new group formed by a few of my sewing buds called the Single Girl Support Group.  Starting this month, we are going to make this pattern together, whether it is a pillow or a full out, king sized quilt.  I am hoping for a twin, but if I really love it, maybe a larger one for my bed.  I have yet to decide on fabrics, but I'm leaning towards scrappy with some type of gray background.  Seeing that it is already February, I guess I should decide soon, right?  Who knows, I may like sewing curves so much, I may even tackle a pickledish/double wedding ring!  Make sure you check out the support group if you are interested in joining us.  Are any of you participating?  This is my first quilt-along, and I am rather excited.


 Goal number two for 2011 is to keep a journal.  I was one of those kids growing up that loved writing in my little diary everyday. This lasted well through college, and my little notebooks went with me everywhere. Before my husband and I were married, we kept a joint one.  We were in the midst of a long distance relationship (I was teaching, he was several states away in chiropractic school) and we took turns keeping the journal and writing to each other about our everyday life.  It was a really special way to keep each other updated daily when we couldn't be together.  Since having children, journaling is one those things that has taken a backseat. 


After seeing this post by Camille, I knew I had to get my hands on one of these books.  It is called "One Line a Day - a five year memory book."  There is only enough room to write a sentence or two each day, so it is quick and easy.  Each page is for one day and has five sections (one per year).  For example, today's page is labeled February 3, and tonight I will write something in the first section, and then next year on this date I will write on the same page in the second section, and so on. Make sense?  It will be fun looking back each year to read what was written on that page during the previous years,  and I think it will be a great keepsake for my family.  If you are interested in one for yourself, you can find them HERE.

There you have it, my goals for 2011.  How about you?  Any special goals for the year?  If you've already blogged about your own, please share a link to them in the comments for us all to enjoy.

xo, Angela

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

finished - flea market fancy quilt


I finished my Flea Market Fancy quilt last week!  It is has been living on our bed for about 5 or 6 days now, so yesterday I thought I'd bring it down for a quick photoshoot.


I love the finished result.  Everything about it is so bright and happy, which is definitely needed this time of year.  Lots and lots of pictures, I know.  I couldn't help it.  I really like this fabric, and it is so nice to finally have a quilt made completely out it.

 

Here it is crumpled up on the bed before I brought it downstairs.  Is that bad that I was too lazy to spread it out for a picture of the whole thing?  Whoops.


quilt stats
fabrics - Flea Market Fancy by Denyse Schmidt, Kona solid in Bone
binding - Kona solid in aqua, hand sewn
pattern - rectangular bulls-eye design by me
size - approx. 100" x 105"
quilting - echo/shadow quilting by me



Phew.  That is a big quilt, my largest by far!  A quick note on the white solid that I used, since I had many questions and comments about it.  I rarely ever use an actual white solid.  I have three kids plus a dog that lives in the house.  White would never last, so I only use it in items that are for show rather than use, like minis for the table, wall hangings, etc.  For my quilts, where I'd like to use whites, I often substitute Kona Bone instead.  It has the appearance of white when it is paired with other fabrics, but it is more of a creamy, ivory color.  I find that it hides so much, and it washes nicely as well.  I make quilts to be used and loved on, so I prefer to use colors that hide the multitude of messes that come its way.   

Okay, that is it for now.  Hope you are having a great week!  If you are in an area being hit by this big snowstorm, keep warm and safe.

with love, Ang

Previous posts on the making of this quilt: