Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Mini QT "3D" Swap Update

Well, as I mentioned in my previous post, my partner in the Mini QT Swap "3D" round hadn't sent me anything. I don't really know the details, but suffice it to say she received a quilt and other goodies from me, but decided not to send something in return. Of course, I was bummed. But then, I found out that Ruth was making me an 'Angel Quilt' and I was thrilled. I'd already swapped with Ruth and her work is gorgeous (check out this post for the details). Well, a few days ago this came in the mail...

It's stunning - she really did her research. I've got some little mushrooms in my flickr favorites. But wait, there's more. Who is hiding behind that door? (forgive the cheesy rhyme - it wasn't intentional, but it's staying in the post)

It's a little garden gnome. Adorable! Thanks so much, Ruth. I love this little quilt and appreciate you for going out of your way to make sure I had a good great experience this round.

But, the fun doesn't end there. The very next day I had a package waiting for me. I recognized the flickr name (DeeRoo G) on the return address and went into panic mode. Had I forgotten I was in a swap? I wasn't expecting anything in the mail and worried that I might have missed a deadline. I opened the package and here's what was inside...

Turns out that Dee felt badly about my fate in the swap and put together a package of goodies for me. Some lovely fabric, some patterns, velcro tabs, a cute mug rug, and a lovely note. How sweet is that?!

Thank you so much, Ruth and Dee, for making this round so wonderful.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Tale of Three (and a half) Swaps

So, I've been keeping pretty busy with swaps lately. First up was the Scrappy Mug Rug Swap. This was my first time participating in this swap and I really enjoyed making this little mug rug (and receiving some beauties in return).

Here's the quilt with some of the goodies that I sent along (not pictured are some pieces of the batik fabric that I also sent along). I really love that orange swirl glass and will have a small plate made of the same glass to show off soon.

And here's what I received from FlossieBlossoms. She wasn't happy with the aqua and red mug rug (really?!?!), so she made the little hedgie and sent them both. I also got some wonderful little extras of cocoa, chocolate, hedgie fabric (the same fabric is on the reverse of the hedgie mug rug) and some postcards from her area. I am just thrilled with these goodies!

Next up is the Mini QT Swap. The theme this time around was '3D'. This swap is a direct swap (not a secret swap) and, although the deadline was March 31, I haven't received mine or heard from my partner. Hopefully everything is okay with her. Normally I don't post a picture until my partner lets me know the package was received, but I think that I'm safe after 3 weeks. So, here is what I sent out, It measures about 9" x 11" if I remember correctly.

The DQS10 (Doll Quilt Swap Round 10) is the big one... The DQS is the swap that first got me interested in flickr and in swaps. I wanted to join in, but needed to show that I used flickr and had experience in swaps before they would accept me into the lottery. I'm hooked now. I made this little quilt (approximately 16" across) for needles-n-notions. I knew that she liked the aqua/red combo (as do I) and decided to go with this octagon shape. I didn't remember that she had made an octagon Doll Quilt for her partner in the last round of DQS (didn't remember even though I 'favorited' two pictures of it). I included a fused glass pendant with flecks of aqua glass in it and a fat quarter of some of my favorite red batik (not pictured).

Amanda was inspired by a Storm at Sea quilt that I had favorited. She used Anna Maria Horner fabrics (yummy) in the mini. The fabrics have a lovely sheen to them. She really nailed it, it's a gorgeous little quilt.

Finally, the most recent swap was the Make Mine Modern Swap. This was my first time participating in this swap and it's a little different from the others in that the swap item doesn't have to be a quilt, just something sewn (bag, table runner, pillow, etc). There are some extras that are required in this swap also - in other swaps the extras are completely optional. So, onto what I made. I was creating for N. Ramirez who mentioned that she would like a sewing machine cover. I went with linen and bright colors. The ties are tacked onto the sides, but could easily be taken off if she wanted to use it for a wall quilt or table mat. Here it is on my sewing machine which is quite a bit smaller than hers, thus the awkward fit.

My partner mentioned that she liked shot cottons, so for the 1.5 yards of fabric that I needed to include in the package I purchased some Carolina Chambray from Lolly's in Shipshewana. I might have taken the opportunity to buy a little fabric for myself also. I also included a fused glass pendant with a modern design in her package.

Now, here's what I got in the swap. Gknittinknam pulled my name and he really spoiled me! I mentioned that I would like either a quilted pillow cover or a table runner. I guess Rick couldn't choose because he made both (and then some). The pillow (sent with the pillow form, so the box was huge) is made of scrumptious silk and came along with the neatest quilted magnetic board and a matching cushion. The workmanship on all this is just exquisite!

Color me spoiled...here is a partial shot of the table runner (it's quite long and difficult to get a picture of the whole thing while still focusing on the details of the piece). The batiks perfectly coordinate with my formal dining room. The fabric origami is gorgeous and, as with the silk pieces, the quilting is spectacular.

Additionally, I received some gorgeous fabric, a couple of postcard patterns, an aqua (!) rotary cutter, and a bunch of Smartees. Thanks so much, Rick, for your generous and beautiful work!

Now I've got to get to work on my next two swaps...the Mini QT Swap theme this time around is Circles/Swirls and I'm also participating in the Scrappy Mug Rug Swap again.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Grandma's Quilt

For my grandma's 80th birthday I decided to make her a quilt for her living room. It needed to be something fairly simple because I might be a little overextended at the moment. I settled on a Chinese coin quilt. For this quilt I used two charm packs of Moda's Fig & Plum line (I had one charm pack in my stash and ended up ordering another pack from an ebay seller). I cut the 5 inch squares into varying widths and paired the prints with Kona bone.

I machine quilted this with a variegated thread that really picked up the colors nicely from the various prints.

I pieced the back, placing a row of the coins about one third of the way down from the top. This used up almost all the fabric from the two charm packs.

Charm packs are definitely not the ideal way to go as there are a lot of seams. It would have been faster to create this with yardage, sewing together long strips and then cutting them. Regardless, I'm pleased with the finished quilt. I gave my grandma the quilt today and she seemed to really like it as well. The quilt measures 43" x 63".

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Up, Up, & Away

Here is the quilt that I sent to quiltinkimmie in the MiniQT Swap on flickr. Our theme was Take Flight. My pictures are quite terrible since it is winter in Indiana and a blizzard was about to hit us when I was taking my pictures. So, indoor lighting it is.

The balloon was strip pieced and then cut at angles and sewn back together. I then fused that piece to some double-sided fusable and ironed it on to the quilt. I machine sewed around the balloon for a little extra stability. The basket is made from one inch strips of fabric that I folded in half (wrong sides together) and sewed a seam along the side. I then trimmed the seam and inserted a bias bar and fiddled the seam to the back before pressing open. I ironed the heck out of the little tubes and then cut them into smaller lengths and wove them together. I sewed the woven pieces on top of another piece of the same colored fabric just in case there were any gaps. Finally, I sewed that piece onto another piece of the same colored fabric and sewed the whole lot to the quilt by hand. I finished up with some embroidery and both hand and machine quilting. There's a little 'faux piping' (flat piping without the puff) in red along the egdes of the quilt before the binding went on.

As you can see, the basket is 3D, so you can add a little something (or someone) in there for a ride. In this case, I added a little Wicked Witch of the East doll for Kim (she loves The Wizard of Oz). I also sent along one of my fused glass pendants in coordinating colors.
Here's a close up of the pendant.

And, finally, a look at the gorgeous quilt that Kim sent to me. It is simply stunning. I love everything about it. So did my daughter, so it is hanging in her room. Eventually that kid will run out of wall space and I'll get to hang a quilt in my sewing room...

Thanks, Kim. I had a great time playing along in this swap!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

New in 2011

I was inspired by a bit of embroidery that I saw out on flickr and decided to make my own version of the design.

I've actually added a little French knot to her bow since I took the picture. I'm thinking that I'll make a little mini quilt using the embroidery as the centerpiece.

I made it into Doll Quilt Swap 10 on flickr and I'm so excited! I haven't settled on a design just yet. Many of the participants have finished theirs, so there is a lot of inspiration to look at over on flickr.

In addition to DQS10, I'm also in the Mini QT Swap, Scrappy Mug Rug Swap, and the Make Mine Modern Swap. I just sent out the December/January Mini QT Swap quilt, which had Take Flight theme. As soon as my partner indicates that she's received it, I'll post a little bit about that one. Next up for the Mini QT Swap is a 3-D theme. My daughter is convinced I'm a little crazy for participating in four swaps at once, but I'm confident that it will be a fun experience!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Slug Bug - Silver

I forgot to take 'before' pictures (and the in-progress pictures, for that matter). I didn't think of it after it was way too late. Anyway...I made this shirt for my daughter. She loves the layered look and really liked this old shirt of mine (which had a hole in it).

I started with a plain black t-shirt in her size, my old shirt, freezer paper, and some silver paint. First, I cut the sleeves off my shirt and sewed them into the sleeves of her shirt. I then cut the bottom off of my shirt. Because my shirt was wider than hers, I cut a front piece and a back piece and finished the edges before sewing the pieces onto the bottom of her shirt. This also provided a nice little vent on each side. I didn't have to hem the pieces because I used the existing hem from my shirt. Next, I cut out a stencil from freezer paper and ironed the stencil onto the shirt. Finally, I just applied a few coats of the silver paint (mixed with a little textile medium). Iron to set the paint and you're ready to go.

My girl loves it and has worn it already. In fact, this picture was taken after a run through the washing machine.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

2010 in the Rear View

Well, 2010 is almost over. Frankly, I'm ready to put it in the rear view mirror. Despite the bumps in the road, I did accomplish quite a bit of quilting. The year started with an online quilting challenge. I also jumped into Flickr and the world of online swaps. The challenge and the swaps really pushed me to try out some new techniques and finish more than I would have otherwise.
The above mosaic displays the quilts that I finished this year. Let's see, I've got 15 quilts there...
  • One was made to hang on my daughter's wall
  • One was a charity quilt
  • Two were made as gifts that I gave away
  • Two were commissions
  • Four were made for an online challenge (those remain in my possession until I find them a new home)
  • Five were made for swaps

There are two Lorax quilts in the mosaic and, no, it's not a mistake. I made one for a swap and a friend commissioned me to make one as a gift for her daughter. Of the 15, six are baby to lap quilt sized, while the other nine are sized from 8" x 11" to 25 inches square. There are a few others that were started and not finished, so they'll have to wait until next year. Included in that list of unfinished quilts is a second Peso (the penguin) quilt for my daughter. Hopefully I'll be able to tick that one off in the early days of January.

So, 2011 is going to be better, right?

I'm imagining good great things for 2011. For 2011 I'd like to accomplish the following creative/artistic goals:

  • Open an Etsy store - yeah, that was supposed to happen in 2010...
  • Continue working with fused glass
  • Learn to work in stained glass
  • Continue to participate in quilt swaps

Here's to 2011 and new opportunities. What are your creative goals for 2011?