Sunday, July 31, 2011


As I continue to work on my ABC quilt, I have come to a dilemma.  I am not sure if I want to add sashing between the letters or not.  I am at a standstill on making letters while I wait for some friends to send me a few other pieces and for fabric I ordered to arrive, so I thought I would go ahead and start adding the sashing between the letters for those that I have.

Once I did, I am not sure I like it this way.  I think the extra white may detract from the letters themselves, which is what I want to stand out.  Plus, it is 75" across without the sashing.  With the sashing at 2.5", it will be almost 90" wide and crazy long, which will be harder to quilt on my own machine.  Without the sashing, it will be 75" x 90", which is a good full size quilt.

Any opinions?

I have decided on how I am going to make the back, so I spent yesterday during nap time cutting around 40 2 1/4" x 5 3/4" blocks of some of my favorite fabrics.  I am really excited about the back!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

WIP: ABC I-spy quilt

I didn't mean to be gone from this space for so long, but I have been working on a few things including my ABC quilt!  I am so excited about how it is coming together, and I am now in the home stretch.

"K" is for kites, kisses, kangaroos, keys, king, and koala.

"O" is for oranges, owls, and octopus.

"J" is for jellybeans, jigsaw puzzle, jacks, jewelry,  jack-o-lanterns, and "jump, puff. jump, jump, jump."

"I" is for ice cream, iguanas, ice cream shop, India, Italy, and Ironing board.

"L" is for lions, lemons, lettuce, leaves, lobster, ladybugs, letters (mail), other letters, and lawnmower.  I love the lawnmower! 

"N" is for nurse, numbers, and nest.

I still have g, q, v, x, and z left to go.  Plus, I am going to write out my daughter's name, so I need another e,r,a, and h.

I wish I had some of the Heather Ross volkswagon bus print for "V".  I am going to try some of the printable fabric to draw out some designs for v, q, x, and z.  All I have for y is a little bit of yarn fabric, and I can't think of anything else except including some yellow fabric.  For Z, I am using zebras and pictures of my daughter.  I have a little x-ray fabric and a xylophone, but it isn't enough for the entire square.  I did find something that may work for q, but it is in progress as well.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Yo-Yo Quilt is finished!

I sewed the last two yo-yos together this morning, and it feels so good to have it be finished! My daughter thinks the yo-yo's look like flowers, and she points at it and says, "flowers" which led me to take the quilt to the park and rose garden this morning to snap some pictures of it.

I first started this quilt in 2003, and it is the first quilt I ever started. I really didn't realize what I was getting myself into when I started making it; I just knew I wanted to make a quilt, I didn't have a machine, so it would have to be all done by hand. I am so proud that it is completely pieced together by hand without using a machine at all.

I could also call this my "traveling quilt" because it has definitely traveled. When I started the quilt, I was living in Birmingham, AL, then I got married and moved to Ft. Payne, AL where we lived for about a year. We then moved to Denver, CO, which is where we live now. It has traveled across the country with us as we have moved several times. I have worked on it while driving from Denver to Hobbs, NM to visit my brother, sister-in-law, and new niece, and it has been to Destin, FL several times over the summer to visit with my family. It traveled up to Newport, VA one New Year's Eve to go to a concert, and it has also been to San Francisco, Dallas, Atlanta, and New Orleans. I even worked on it on the ten hour drive from Denver to Yellowstone National Park several years ago. Many of my friends have seen me working on this from time to time over the last eight(!) years, which is so different than the quilts I have worked on with the machine. I like that it has traveled so much, and it was easy to take with me since it was hand sewing.

It is fun to look at and see how my fabric choices have changed over the last eight years. When I first started it, I was working at the Birmingham Children's Theatre as the charge scenic artist, and I would use scraps from the costume shop. This led to realizing that corduroy isn't the best choice to use for yo-yos! I have several 4x4 sections that are made that didn't make it into the final quilt from these early days due to the material I used; I didn't know that wool, silk, and cotton might not be the best mixture of fabrics if you wanted to wash it at home. I plan on using those yo-yos for a doll quilt for my daughter, so they can still be used and loved.

The final quilt is 56 yo-yos across by 56 yo-yos down with the yo-yos being approximately 1-5/8 inches across. It is 90" square, which I think makes it a queen size quilt. It has 3, 156 yo-yos!

Honestly, if I had known eight years ago that it would take so long, I don't know that I would have started it, but I am so glad that I did!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Fancy Block #1-Gnome and Mushroom

I attended a quilt retreat in Ft. Collins back in April taught by Penny of sewtakeahike on paper piecing.  I left confident that I would be able to conquer paper piecing (which is due to Penny's awesome teaching), but then I didn't really practice my skills and started forgetting what I had learned, which is never good!  Amanda and Melinda came up with the idea of making a fancy block each week to practice the skills we learned over the weekend.  They have been showcasing their beautiful blocks over the past two weeks, but I had not had the chance to make one yet.  This week I was determined that I would be able to play along, so I made this gnome and mushroom block!

The pattern is a free one from Sonja at Artisiana; isn't it so cute?  If you aren't familiar with her patterns, you should definitely stop by and check her out. She has such cute ones! It took me a little while to get back into the swing of thinking the way paper piecing goes together, and I did pull out my seam ripper several times to fix a piece sewn on backwards.  Overall, I like my little gnome, and now I need to decide what to do with him.  Pillow?  Mugrug?  Placemat?  Hmmm.....
Go check out Amanda's block at crazymomquilts and Melinda's at quirkygranolagirl!

I made this yesterday, and it is so good!  I have never used Mt. Dew in a recipe before now, and I would never have thought of that!