Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Fox Hollow Finish!

I finished my Fox Hollow quilt this week. I cut six simple blocks (6x11") from each of 13 FQs. I decided to leave out the cute cheater FQ and use it for something else. The backing is a simple green dot and the binding is Kona Cotton in pink. The quilt is 63x72". Amazingly, I was able to quilt this on my Singer Featherweight 221. I sewed down either side of the seams about 1/4". I hope that this is enough; I'm a bit of worried that I needed to do a line down the center of each block. I'll have an expert quilter (aka, my mom) look at it and see what she thinks. I think it turned out great.

Now that the weather is getting chilly, the finished "Living Room" quilt is getting nightly use during reading time. I have fabric to make another and am still waiting on the Mastermind quilt (still at the quilter's).

Here's the fabric for the next quilt. It is Rocket Scientist and fits so well with our family. I'm thinking of adding in some solids (red, blue, green). I still need to figure out what to do with it. I was thinking of pluses or something other than blocks, but can't decide. The text is really cute, and the numbers are a countdown.

I have been reading my new book: Sunday Morning Quilts. I don't have many scraps yet, but the book is great.

On the knitting front, I have finished two sweaters: Plucky Primo and Aran Cashmere. So happy to be knitting more productively again. I still need to finish up 3.5 skeins of Sundara before the end of the year for a KAL.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Sewing up a storm

Lots of new FOs, of the fabric nature...

-1 scrappy pillowcase from a stripe from Connecting Threads and the leftovers from my Ten Little Things binding. 9/10/2012

-3 Mastermind pillowcases 9/14/2012

-3 Mastermind journal covers 9/17/2012

-a scrappy Mastermind wall hanging for my husband's office (my sneaker toes for scale). I used the remnant of the grey fleece from the Ten Little Things quilt. 9/19/2012

And for a big project: first days of fall, cooler temperatures, and a finished quilt. Pretty awesome.
This was hand-quilted weeks ago, but I had to wait to get a walking foot to finish it. The binding on this was much easier to sew on, now that I have a bit of experience and the correct tools to work with. Finished size 68"x84", 9/23/2012.

I actually finished another quilt top using the Mastermind fabric using a modified Turning 20 pattern (9/14/2012). I forgot to take a picture of it when it was done, but here's a bit of in-progress.

Currently, the quilt is at the long-arm quilter's house. I should have it back in November. I hope it looks great. The pattern was pretty simple and hope that the fancy quilting will spice it up a bit.

I also cut out the pieces for my Fox Hollow Quilt and picked out the binding (pink), backing (sage dots), and batting (warm & white) this past weekend. Trying to maximize my FQs. I decided to use the 13 (4 solid, 9 pattern) to make a simple brick pattern. Each piece is 6x11. I prewashed my fabrics. There was a lot of white and red in a few of the pieces and I wanted to see if any thing would run (it didn't). I'm saving the cute "cheater" FQ for another project. That pattern wasn't squared up on the fabric and it annoys me to have warped lines on an angular project. This quilt will be a bit smaller than twin size. I'm thinking I'll either hand-quilt again or have it machine quilted.

Once this quilt is done, I am planning on starting either a king-size (probably in blues) or a queen-size picnic quilt (in reds, greys/blacks, or greens.). I think that will be my 8th quilt (4 baby size, 3 twin). I love the larger sizes. They seem much more useful, but I'm going to have to figure out the quilting part (i.e. long-arm or buy a machine that I can use for free motion). I don't know if I can hand-quilt those big sizes.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

More Fabric, more quilting, and sock knitting

I've been working on hand quilting my "Living room" quilt for the past two weeks. I decided to do diagonal lines on the blue and green blocks and squares in the browns/tans/striped blocks. That took me about a week. I was stumped about the border and then settle on two simple straight rows of hand quilting. The border will be 6" and I did the lines at 2 & 4" from the edge. I like how it looks and was simple to do. Next up: trim the extra backing fabric and batting, sew on the binding, and then decide on whether to sew it down by hand or machine.

I've done a bit of fabric purchasing, for future quilts.
Mastermind Fat Quarters (Connecting Threads) for a quilt and 3 pillowcases
Mastermind Fabric 16 FQs

Bookish Charm Pack (Connecting Threads) for a hexagon project
Bookish colors

Fox Hollow Organic Fat Quarters (Monaluna from Pink Castle Fabrics) for ??? I love the fabric and it was on sale. Every once in a while I need something cute in my life.
Fox Hollow 14 FQs

and a swatch with 4 quilt labels and a custom FQ from Spoonflower:
Spoonflower FQ-words we like
I love this so much because I made it with my kids. They gave me a list of things they like and I made a text fabric with it. I wish I would have set the block differently, but ended up with 3 full blocks and one that was split (top and bottom halves). I think I'll make each of them something using a block of the fabric

I have been making socks lately, but little progress on the sweater front. Still pretty warm here and not great weather for inspiring sweater making. It will be cold soon, and hope the mood will return then.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

And now with the Catch-up Edition

Well, it has been a long time since I've posted anything here on this blog. Over a year!?! I have been busy writing knitting patterns: Spiralini
Plucky Spiralini
and Scraptastic.
Plucky Scraptastic
Lots of knitting was done as well. Many sweaters, socks, toys, and accessories.

Last fall, I got back into spinning. Here's a favorite from Unwind Yarn Company (Falkland)
Unwind Yarn Company Falkland
I knit with my handspun, which was wonderful. These are some socks from FatCat SW Merino:
Handspun Frankenstien Socks

And this summer, I got bitten by the sewing and quilting bugs. Crazy. When I was in high school, I sewed a lot. Lots of clothes, even a swim suit! Then I sort of stopped sewing during college (mostly) and didn't pick it up until I was pregnant 10+ years ago. Unfortunately, I bought a terrible machine that ruined sewing for me. It was a pain to use and made ever sewing project frustrating. So, this summer, I sold it and went back to an old favorite of mine. My mom bought a Singer Featherweight 221 in the late 1950's and it is now the machine I've been using. It is not big, but I love it so and enjoy working on it.

Here's what I have made so far:
a baby quilt out of a "Ten Little Things" charm pack.
Baby Quilt-TLT

I've been making a twin size quilt for our living room. Colors chosen by my 5 year old. That may sound scary, but he actually has a pretty good eye for color. I'm hand quilting it, but here's a QIP picture.
Living room quilt, basting

I made a pair of gift project bags from this tutorial. They are on their way to two knitters.
Knitting project bag

 I also have started making cute hexagons from my tiny scraps collection. I made a needle book out of felt and 1.5" hexagons from a tutorial.
Hexagon needle book

There is also a bunch of fabric on the way from Connecting Threads. They have a techie line of fabric and one with books. Pretty much sums up our family in a nutshell. Pictures of that when they arrive.

I took a dye class as well. Fun!
my yarn-at peace
Zombie Pumpkins
Sprinkles at Sea

Hopefully I'll be able to use the blog again more frequently. I think I started it when my oldest started kindergarten. Next week my youngest will be going to kindergarten. Time really flies!

I think I've realize this past summer that I want to be more "well rounded" in my crafting. I forgot how much I enjoyed sewing and that I'm actually pretty good at it. A bit rusty, but I know what I'm doing at that machine. Same for spinning. I spun some fiber 8 years ago, then finished it up last year. It was nearly an exact match for what I made before. Consistency. I sort of went crazy with my yarn purchases when I first was introduced to hand-dyed yarns and collected quite a stash. Now, I'm trying to avoid that pitfall with fabric purchases. I understand a need for fabric on hand, but also know that it is not good just to buy things because I'm having a bad day or without a project in mind. I also realized that I have a lot of sweaters, socks, and hats and really need to make other things that my family can use. Hopefully my hobbies will not feel like they are a chore to use up materials, but be creative outlets that make me happy. My goal is a usable supply of materials, just enough to inspire and not too much to make me feel guilty.