August Stash Match

05 August 2013

You guys have to go check out the August edition of Stash Match over at Ali's Blog, a.squared.w.  Every month she picks an inspiration fabric and then she finds 6 different bloggers to create a fabric bundle off of the chosen fabric.

Well I happen to be one of those 6 bloggers this month.  I have put together a bundle from my stash and I am planning to give you a little hint to help you figure out which one is mine!  So here you go ...

My bundle contains a variety of colors both bright and dark.  And for those of you who know me .... it also has a print from one of my most favorite designers!

Good luck!  Make sure you go check out the other hints and enter to win a beautiful AMH fat eighth bundle.

The Scrappy Trip Quilt Is Finished!

10 July 2013

It feels like forever since I have completed a quilt.  I think I was on a small project binge for a while.  So beware, this post will be picture heavy!  I am loving this quilt and am actually using it as I write this post!

Normally when I make a quilt I am very precise and intentional about fabrics and color placement.  This time I wanted to stretch myself.  I didn't want to worry about color placement and I swore to myself that I would only use scraps!!!  This is actually the first quilt that I have completed entirely from my scraps.

For those of you who might not have heard of the scrappy trip along, it was a quilt along that started earlier this year and is based off of Bonnie Hunter's Scrappy Trip Quilt Tutorial.  There have been some amazing quilts that have been made and you can see some of those in the Scrappy Trip Along flickr thread.

So without further ado ..... here's my lovely!

I will be honest, it was really difficult for me not to plan anything with this quilt.  But I have to say that I am pleased with the final result!

Have I mentioned that I love how this turned out!

So there you have it!  I am not the kind of quilter that makes a quilt a second time, but I would love to make this quilt again.  I think it's because there are endless possibilities with color placement and the eventual design or pattern. I might have to give this another go!  And thanks to Bonnie Hunter for a spectacular pattern and tutorial!

Third Quarter Finish-A-Long 2013

08 July 2013

As the third quarter begins, I am looking around my sewing room seeing all of the projects that I need to finish!  This is the quarter of the year where I have the most time for sewing, therefore, I'm going to pile on my projects for this quarter!  So here we go ....

1. I need to quilt and bind my scrappy trip along quilt.  I know I can finish this one.  It's already basted and since I used basting spray it needs to be quilted asap!

2. The next quilt that I really want to finish this quarter is my Single Girl Quilt.  I have all my pieces cut and several blocks done but there is a lot of work left to be done!

3. I really would like to finish two pillows for the Christmas season this year.   I love the polar bear and penguin FPP patterns in the Pretty in Patchwork: Holidays book.  They will look great on my couch!

4. I have sketched out plans for tote and I am really wanting to try my hand at writing up a pattern so this is definitely on my to-do list this summer.  I have all of the blocks pieced, now I need to construct that bag and figure out how to write a pattern with the software that I have.

5. Jessi from Inside the Paper Box showed her amazing Birdie Sling at our last McKinney Modern Quilt Guild meeting.  After I saw hers, I knew that I had to make my own.  So I purchased some fabrics and will be starting on this project tomorrow!  I want to be able to use this bag this week so I should have a quick turn around time.

6.  And of course I have my sewing kit that I need to finish.  This has been on my list forever!  I just can't seem to get motivated to finish this.

I am sure there are many more projects but I think this is a good start.  What projects are you working on?  Are there ever any projects that you just can't get motivated to finish?  Please tell me I'm not the only one who has that issue.  
she can quilt 
I'm linking up over at She Can Quilt!

A Lovely Year of Finishes: July Goal

05 July 2013

I totally missed linking up during the month of June but I'm back on track and have a finish that I absolutely need done before the end of July. 
At the beginning of the year everyone was working on the scrappy trip along quilts and I thought they were absolutely amazing.  I had to many projects going on and I didn't want to start another one at that time but the quilt definitely went on my to-do list.  Well over the past month, I have been working on my very own scrappy trip quilt!

I started by pulling fabrics from my scraps. I didn't cut into any new fabric!

Then I started piecing my blocks and then laid them out.

I basted the quilt last week.

I just started the quilting last weekend.  My goal is to have the quilting done by the end of this weekend!  Now I need to find the perfect binding!

I linking up at Fiber of All Sorts!

It's the End of the 2nd Quarter: Finish-A-Long

03 July 2013

I can't believe we are over half way through the year!  And now it's time to link up my 2nd quarter finishes.  You can see my 2nd quarter goals here.

she can quilt
I had 5 projects that I wanted to complete. And I definitely completed at least 5 project over the past three months but they weren't necessarily these 5 projects. :(

1. I wanted to finish a tote but that didn't happen. I have the fabrics cut and blocks pieced though. I just have to finish the construction. At least there was progress.

2. I did finish the QAYG pouch. In fact you can see my post about that here and there's a tutorial!.

3. Absolutely no progress on these. Ugh!

4. I was able to finish my FPP pillow! And I have to say I love how it turned out!

5. And as for the project that has been on my finish-a-long list for the past year .... still not done. There has been progress though. Maybe next quarter I will get it done.

Let's Stay Connected!

30 June 2013

Well the time has come and Google Reader will be shutting down tomorrow.  Make sure you take some time today to transfer all of your google reader info over to another reader!  I have heard that feedly and bloglovin' are the two most popular readers at the moment.  I personally use bloglovin' and I really like it. 

If you need some help getting started, Diane @ from blank pages, wrote a great post walking you through the process.  So, go take a few minutes and find a new reader!  I would hate for you all to lose track of all of the amazing blogs that you follow! 

As always, thanks for being great friends and followers! Until next time ....

Cross Block Tutorial

17 June 2013

I have been loving all of the cross block projects that have been floating around flickr.  Rachel made a gorgeous quilt with this block but in a larger size which you can see here.  I believe the original inspiration came from Ashley's (Film in Fridge) Marcelle Pluses quilt, and Alexia Abegg's book, Liberty Love.  I had a hard time finding a tutorial on how to make them so I thought I would put one together for you guys!  This tutorial is for a 5" finished block.  I was able to make a 20" pillow cover with 16 blocks and I loved how it turned out.  Here's how I put mine together!

To make one block you will need:
Background Print:
  • (4) 2.5" x 2.5" squares
  • (4) 1.5" x 1.5" squares 
Main Print:
  • (2) 1.5" x 1.5" squares
  • (1) 1.5" x 3.5" strip

I started by sewing a 1.5"x1.5" background square to the 1.5"x1.5" main fabric which made the top of the cross. And then did the same for the bottom of the cross. Then I sewed the 1.5"x1.5" background squares to the 1.5"x3.5" strip.  When you are finished with that, you will have something like what is pictured below.

Then, I sewed the rows together.  I started with the 2.5" background square and sewed it to the top of the cross and then to the other 2.5" square.  Then, I did the same for the bottom row.  When that is done, your block will look like what is pictured below.

All you need to do now is sew your rows together and you will have a finished block!

I made 16 of these blocks to make a 20" pillow cover.

Just in case you want to make a 20" pillow cover, here is what you will need...
Background Print:
  • (64) 2.5" x 2.5" squares
  • (64) 1.5" x 1.5" squares 
Main Print:
  • (32) 1.5" x 1.5" squares (in sets of 2)
  • (16) 1.5" x 3.5" strips (each one matching a set of 2- 1.5"x1.5" squares)
And then finish however you like.
Here is a great tutorial for an invisible zipper.
Katy of i'm a ginger monkey also did a great 5 part series on how to finish a pillow.  You can check it out here.

Modern Mini Quilt Challenge

14 June 2013

I have been debating over the past few days about which mini I wanted to enter into Ellison Lane Quilts Modern Mini Quilt Challenge.  I decided to go with the mini that I made for Tiffany in the Modern She Made Swap.

I have seen this pattern around but I ended up drawing my own foundation paper piecing pattern to use.  The mini measures 24"x24".  If you haven't checked out the other entries you should really take some time to do that.  There are some gorgeous projects over there!

Successful Swapping!!

14 June 2013

Another round of the Pillow Talk Swap was recently wrapped up, and it was a successful swap for me!  I am trying to limit my swapping this year but I couldn't resist the Pillow Talk Swap, it really is one of my favorite swaps of all time!

For my partner, I went with the jewel tones that she requested.  And I came up with this ...
I think my partner appreciated it, and she mentioned her husband even like it.  That would be a huge success in my home, that's for sure!  I think my husband believes our house is going to be overrun with handmade goods.  I'm not quite sure why that's a negative thing.

Anyway ... the pillow I received was perfect for my home!  Gina made the most perfect hexagon, low volume pillow that goes wonderfully with our bed.
She even incorporated text prints which are my favorite.  And one of them even has the word "Texas" on it which is where we live.  It was very obvious that a lot of time and thought went into making this.  I really do appreciate everything she did to make this pillow special for me!  She also sent a cute little pouch and some tim tams.   I was really spoiled! 

So another swap is now done .... I have one more swap that is still in the works.  I signed up for the Fabric Basket Swap because it was a small project and I didn't have any fabric baskets around the house.  So when my basic arrives I will definitely share it with you guys!

Simplicity 2274 Duffel Bag

07 June 2013

Have you guys seen the Simplicity Duffel Bags that have been popping up around the quilting community?  There are so many amazing bags out there, and I needed one for our trip that we took to San Antonio.  I love the idea of traveling handmade and that was my goal for the trip!  So I picked up the pattern and found some great fabrics and got to work.  

I did the pattern pretty much as described except I added a lining.  I also quilted it differently and added some reinforcement to the pull tabs by the zipper, but that's about it.  

Let me tell you, this bag is huge!  It's definitely big enough to hold anything you could ever need for a weekend getaway.  I opted for a Melody Miller print, I wanted fabric that was a little more sturdy than quilting cotton.

 That typewriter is one of my favorite parts of this print!  My mom said she typed on a typewriter just like this when she was younger.  So there you have it!  If you have ever thought about tackling the Weekender Bag by Amy Butler, I would start out trying this bag first!  This would be a great way to get into bag making!

Scrappy Trip Pillow!

03 June 2013

At last month's McKinney MQG meeting I mentioned that I would be making something handmade for a prize at the June meeting.  At that point I had no idea what I would be making but I managed to whip something up.  

I have been watching the Scrappy Trip Along Quilts pop up over the blogging world over the past several months.  I was not able to participate at that time due to being overwhelmed with other projects, but I have been thinking and dreaming about making a scrappy quilt.

So I decided to give the scrappy trip block a try with the hopes of incorporating it in the handmade prize I needed to make.

As I was working on the pillow cover I was not liking how it started out.  There were so many colors that didn't necessarily work well together.  In fact I about chucked the project right in the middle of making it, which is sooooo not like me!  But I plugged away and kept working just praying that it would turn out half way decent at the end.  And I have to say now that it's finished I really really like it!

The blocks were so easy to make, I can see how a quilt made with this method could be put together so quickly!  You can find the block tutorial here, it's by the fabulous Bonnie Hunter.  

So basically, after I finished this pillow, I was in love with the process of making this block.  I have realized that it's been a while since I have worked on a quilt, so I have made it my mission to work on three quilts over my summer break.  As you can easily guess, the scrappy trip quilt will be one of the three!  I will fill you in on the other two soon.

Hopefully whoever wins this pillow cover will love it as much as I have grown to love it!

Life is Busy but Life is Good!

09 May 2013

Oh my goodness ... I feel like I have been going non-stop lately, but it's definitely in a good way!  Although you wouldn't be able to tell it by my blog lately.  I have spent the past couple of weeks  planning and planning and planning.  Unfortunately not a whole lot of sewing has taken place but that will change soon.

I have a couple of quilt shops that I absolutely love in McKinney, TX about 35 minutes south of where I live, and I am lucky enough to be teaching at one of those shops!  I have just solidified my teaching schedule for the next four months and I am going to be one busy lady.  During the day, my full time job is to teach music to elementary kiddos, but now on some evenings and weekends I have the privilege of teaching sewing/quilting!  I have begun teaching already and absolutely love it!

I'll be teaching classes and leading sewing groups like:
Foundation Paper Piecing
Gum Drop Pillows (an Amy Butler pattern)
Bridgette's Bagettes (an Atkinson's Designs pattern)
A Single Girl Quilt Along Group (a Denyse Schmidt pattern)
A lecture on how to get connected with the online quilting community.
Modern Stitchers (a group who learns a new sewing concept paired with a quick technology demo)
and ....

wait for it ....


That's right!  I have joined up with several amazing ladies to bring a Modern Quilt Guild to McKinney, TX.  We had our first meeting last Tuesday and we had almost 40 ladies show up!  I couldn't believe the attendance!  I'm not going to lie, I was pretty overwhelmed but I quickly realized who I was in the company of.  Let's be serious, all quilters are amazingly sweet people and these ladies were no exception!  Seeing this many people show up for our first meeting really solidified the need for a group like this.  What I thought would be a casual thing at first has turned into a legit organization overnight.  So over the next few months I will be working my little tail off to provide some great opportunities to these amazing women.  I can't wait to get to know all of them and to learn about their "story". 

As I looked at everyone at the meeting I just kept thinking about all of the knowledge that was sitting in one place and how excited I was to learn more from them as well!  So here we go, I truly believe it will be a wild ride and I am ready!  If you are in the McKinney area we would love for you to join us! You can check out the McKinney Modern Quilt Guild website here.

Quilt As You Go Pouch Tutorial!

22 April 2013

The hubs and I don't take vacations very often but we have finally made plans for a mini vacation!  We will be exploring the wonderful town of San Antonio next month.  So if any of you know some good quilt shops let me know which ones I should plan on visiting while we are down there.

My goal for this trip is to travel with as many handmade goods as possible.  I have my Weekender Bag that I can use.  And I have also thought about making the Simplicity 2274 duffel bag.  As I was contemplating what I would need to take with me I decided I could whip up a pouch for my cosmetics.

And here's a little tutorial about how I made mine!

To get started you will need:
A variety of scraps in your preferred colors!
(2) 10"x14" - Pieces of cotton duck
(2) 10"x14" - Pieces of batting
(2) 7.25"x10" - Pieces of fabric for the lining (I used laminated cotton so it can be cleaned easily)
(1) 8.5" Zipper
(1) 2"x4" piece of fabric for the zipper ends

1. Start by basing the cotton duck and the batting.

2.  Place a scrap on the center of the batting and sew down.

3. As you can see, I used straight lines about 1/4" apart for my project.
And I only sewed over the scrap.

4. Place your next scrap right sides together matching up the edges.  It helps if the scrap you are adding is the same width as the piece you are piecing to.

5. Sew a 1/4" seam down the side.  

6.  Press.

7. Quilt your new piece only!

8. Place your next scrap along the edge of what is already there.  Again, it helps if the piece you are adding is the same width or length of what you are adding it to.  Sew a 1/4" seam down the edge.

9. Press and then quilt that piece only, however you desire.

10. Continue that process until you are finished with two different panels. 

Keep in mind you don't have to do just one piece at a time.  If you like, you can do sections at a time.  For instance, I pieced a section before I added it to my panel.

11. When your panels are finished, trim them to 7.75"x10".  Then gather your other materials, it's time to assemble your pouch!

12. We will start by preparing your zipper ends.  Press the 2"x4" piece in half lengthwise.

13. Using the crease you made as your guide, press the long edges to the center.

14.  Press in half.

15. Trim your zipper to 8.5".

16. Cur your zipper ends to make two 2" pieces.  Place one piece around one end of the zipper.

17. Stitch in place.

18. Trim off excess to make the edges even with the zipper. And complete with the other end of the zipper.

19. Next we will attach the zipper.  Layer one quilted panel right side up, then center the zipper with the zipper facing down!!!  Finally place the lining right side down.  Make sure all of the top edges are even before stitching!

20. I usually clip my layers in place before I stitch them together!  I love my wonder clips!  They are the best invention ever!

21. Using your zipper foot, stitch closely to the zipper coils.  It would be similar to a 1/4" seam.

22. Flip the lining around and top stitch.

23. Place the second panel right side facing up. Then place the zipper/panel even with the top edge.  Both quilted panels should be facing each other.

24. Then place the second lining piece face down, even with the top edge.

25. Clip or pin in place.

26. Using a zipper foot stitch like you did in step 21.

27. Flip the lining around and top stitch in place like you did in step 22.  You should now have a large piece that resembles this.

Isn't it pretty?  Now you can take a second to admire your beautiful creation.

28.  IMPORTANT: Open your zipper half way!!  Next, we are going to make sure that the right sides of the quilted panels are facing each other.  And the right sides of the linings are facing each other.

29. Now you need to stitch a 1/4" seam around the edges of the pouch.  But leave approximately a 4" opening at the bottom of the lining so we will be able to turn our pouch right side out.  It's hard to see my 1/4" seam because the white thread blends in but I promise it's there.

30.  Pull the pouch through the 4" opening you left!  If you didn't open your zipper half way in step 28, you won't be a happy camper during this part.

31.  Keep pulling until it looks like this!

32.  Top stitch the opening closed and stuff the lining into the pouch.

And voila your pouch is complete!!

Now that I have my cosmetic pouch done, I am contemplating making the Simplicity 2274 duffel bag.  Hmmm ..... I might have to go purchase some fabric .... aww shucks!

I am linking this up with the 2nd Quarter Finish A Long with she can quilt!

she can quilt

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