Sunday, February 7, 2016

Sunday Stash: Some New Patterns

I like to buy new patterns and read/admire them for awhile before I buy the fabric to go with. 

First up is a new bag pattern from "Lazy Girl Designs," the Sweatpea Pods. Cathy brought back a sample of the special zipper required for this bag from Fall market. Isn't it cute?

I showed you this layer cake and "City Blocks" pattern last week -- now the Moda Bella Solids that I want to use for the background has arrived, so this will be my next "new quilt" start!

You know how I love "strip quilts." This new book from That Patchwork Place has lots of great patterns that use 2½" fabric strips. I can't decide which one to make first!

This was a "just because it's pretty" purchase. I have a growing collection of text prints, and I think this block will make a great pillow for my grammar nazi friends!

Being an Idaho native, I couldn't resist this embroidery pattern. Even though I haven't embroidered for years!

Do you ever buy a pattern that you'll never make up, just because you like it? Elder Son says "It's OK to buy it just because it's pretty!"

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

WIP Wednesday: Mystery Quilt Catch-Up

Three snow days in a row means lots of quilting time!

I now have all the blocks finished for the English Manor Mystery Quilt Along. All I have left is the sashing, quilting, and binding.

This mystery QAL celebrates the 2015 season of "Downton Abbey."

It was designed and hosted by Ebony Love of LoveBug Studios. I was lucky that Ruth's Stitchery offered the entire line of Andover's Downton Abbey fabrics, and I chose the "Team Carson" colors.

I really like the darker colors of the "Team Carson" quilt. All I have to do now is find a guy who is a Downton Abbey fan, and is "quilt worthy!"

I am also stitching along with Ebony's "Little House on the Prairie" Mystery QAL. The Accuquilt Go! dies I ordered got caught in the midwest blizzard, so I skipped step 3 and went on to step 4.

I have to admit, it's a lot easier to piece precisely using the die cutter!

Although it's been nice to sew all day for three days, I'm ready to return to the shop tomorrow!

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Monday, February 1, 2016

February 1 UFO Parade

UFO challengers did so well finishing their favorite UFOs in January! The year is off to a great start, with 19 finishes.

If you're ready to start your next UFO, the number is:

And now, on to the parade!

A new challenger, Erin, sent this photo of her gorgeous scrappy Log Cabin. She writes:
I’m so excited to participate in your UFO challenge this year.  I made a list at the beginning of the year, and I had 28 UFOs.  Yikes!  But I finished one today (to Flimsy stage).  It will be a quilt for my new niece, born just before Christmas.  I blogged about it today at My Patchwork Life.

Welcome to the challenge, Erin, and I hope you get those UFOs pared down to a reasonable number this year!

Friend Martha and her daughter, Shannon, have had a busy January. I love the story behind this quilt:
My daughter made a quilt of over 100 leaves and a tree trunk she designed for a woman in her on-line mommy's group. The woman's one year old had died and the group wanted to do something for her. Most sent in signed leaves and Shannon appliqu├ęd them. I quilted it and the woman loved it!  There is nothing like a quilt for comfort!

The Boise Modern Quilt Guild had a "tote exchange," and here is the tote Martha made. What a great idea for a swap!

Here are some more bags from the swap. I spy a "Sew Everything" bag there!

This pattern is from Quilt Expressions in Boise, and is called "Last Dance." I'll be shopping for this pattern next time I'm in Idaho!

Martha's DH calls this quilt her "circus quilt," but she says the real name is "Fair and Square." Love these colors!

You're right, Martha -- it's been a busy month in your household!

Joy certainly earns "a jewel in her crown" for this project. Here's what she told me about it:

Whew!  It is finally finished!
I went back and very first submission of a UFO was a t-shirt quilt for a friend in January 2014. When she gave me that quilt to reconstruct, she also gave me this quilt to repair. It needed many new diamonds, repairs to seams, a new border, new batting, and a new back.
We would have just made a new quilt, but this was sentimental to her, and she wanted it repaired. When I unquilted it, I found more repairs were needed than I originally thought. At that point, the task seemed impossible, and I set it aside to work on other projects. And I kept putting it off...for two more years. I finally decided to just get it finished. I spent my days of being snowed in to complete it. She was glad to have it back. Now I'm spending more time in my sewing room because I can sew whatever I want...Guilt Free!
Thanks so much for the "free" month!  I think it was just the motivation I needed to prioritize what really needed to be done.

Sue's "favorite UFO" is not a quilt but a group of blocks. She says she doesn't want to sew them together until she has them made in all the colors. This may result in multiple quilts! Read all about it on her blog, Quilty Bits and Bobs, here.

Oh, look, here's another one from Martha and Quilt Expressions!

Martha made this quilt from a set of 10" squares. No waste with this clever pattern!

Deb's submission this month is the "Zipper Quilt" from Missouri Star Quilt Company. She says a sewing buddy taught her friends to make this quilt, and Debra just had to make her's in red. 

So cheery, Deb, your photo really brightens my grey, snowy day!

Betsy received a Kaffe Fassett kit from a fellow quilter, and made this beauty for her brother. Lucky guy!

She practiced her long-arm quilting -- here's a closeup -- and I think she did a great job!

Susan sent a funny story with her finish:

This is my oldest UFO - Back in 1988, I went to the first NSW Quilt Guild's Quilt Symposium. One of the classes I did was machine quilting - using a walking foot - we had to pre-prepare a panel and in the class we quilted.  This was all before fabric markers that vanished, so it seems we marked in pencil.  I finished the panel at the time and it has been sitting / hiding ever since.(One interstate move and one house move)
It was meant to be a finish in my first (?) year of your challenge but couldn’t find it when the time came - so had to do another project. Finally, it's a cushion!
And a lovely cushion, too, Susan. Thanks for the chuckle!

Ohmigosh, that Martha! Here is her 5th finish for the month, a cute baby quilt called Fancy Foxes.

 Kerry has two lovely finishes for January. The first is in one of my favorite color combinations, blue and cheddar. It's called "Survivor," and Kerry started it in a class with Joyce Weeks at the San Diego quilt show two years ago. She says the class sample was pink and blue, but Kerry and I both love the cheddar and blue combination.

Next is Woodland Wildlife and is a leftover UFO from 2015. It is for Kerry's Granddaughter.

So cute, Kerry, she will love this!

Another new UFO challenger, Jennifer, is off to a good start for the new year.

She sent in photos of two finishes for this month.  First, Jennifer's "coffee quilt." she says she started it in 2004 or so with swap blocks. More blocks were added in 2009 or 2001, and now it's a lovely finish!

Jennifer's second quilt has a touching story:
The second one is one for my mom.  She was diagnosed with Stage 4 liver cancer in September, and we were told to brace ourselves for the new year.  I've had the top done for a a year or so, but never quilted it because I was afraid. It's done now. I just finished the binding.
Irene finished two quilts for others this month. The first is lap quilt for a friend battling ovarian cancer. The pillow shows the backing that she used.

Irene's second  quilt is so clever!
The second one is from an old pattern book I have had in my UFOs for over a year. It will be in a silent auction fund raiser for  our church’s Child Development Center next month. It is a wall hanging organizer for papers, pencils and notes, etc.

Sandi sent the first finished "Aliietare" from Bonnie Hunter's newest mystery. Here's what she told me about it:

Each Black Friday now for six years I've been looking forward to Part 1 of Bonnie Hunter's Winter Mystery.  Bonnie is so gracious every year with all her followers providing a FREE design.  For me she's never disappointed in the reveal that takes place right at the New Year.  This year, as she has done previously, is a design in the colors of one of the many trips she takes while lecturing and presenting workshops.  The 2015 Mystery was Allietare created to commemorate her visit to Tuscany.  I coined my project Kontentment inspired by the meaning of GLADDEN, to REJOICE, to become CHEERFUL.  I love the colors of gold, red, black, a constant gray and the very necessary neutrals.  So without further ado here is my Kontentment.
You can also read a bit more about putting it together on my blog:  under the heading LABELS on the right side bar select Kontentment to get every post from the first part.

You make me wish I had done this mystery, Sandi!

My #9 UFO is the Downton Abbey mystery from year-before-last. What's yours?

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Sunday Stash: My Newest Squee!

It's a little late in the day, but my computer crashed this morning and would not respond to any commands. Including the (colorful) verbal kind!

Thanks to the DH, we're back up and running -- and I can show you the photos of the latest quilt kit at Ruth's Stitchery. It's "Fancy Forest" by Elizabeth Hartman and Robert Kaufman Fabrics.

I am just so excited about this collection, I arranged all 40 fat quarters on my cutting table so I could admire and photograph them. I love that EH designed the prints to complement Kona Cotton solids.

Here's the background fabric , Robert Kaufman's Essex yarn-dyed linen blend.

I love that texture for the background!

Here is a photo of the completed quilt:

I can't wait to start on this lovely! Maybe if it snows enough tomorrow, the schools (and hence, the shop!) will be closed!

Come back tomorrow for the February 1 UFO parade. See challengers' "Favorite UFOs!"

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Friday, January 29, 2016

Friday Finish

This Jelly Roll Party quilt was a big hit with Ruth's Stitchery customers. Five "jelly rollers" made their quilt with the same fabrics as the sample!

The fabrics are "Cold Spell" by Laundry Basket Quilts. I love this collection particularly, because it has both batiks and cottons. For years, we quilters thought we shouldn't mix cottons and batiks. Edyta Sitar proved that rule to be wrong wrong wrong!

The pattern is "Winter Solstice" from Cozy Quilts. The only change I made to the pattern was using my favorite "Corner Clipper" ruler rather than sew and flip triangles for the star points.

Oh -- and the white "patches" in the border are class information signs for the shop!

Big snow predicted for Colorado this weekend. It's a "sew-day!"

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

WIP Wednesday

The  January UFO "number" is "pick your favorite." My favorite UFO is "Ryokan."

Ryokan means "Japanese Inn." The pattern is from ThimbleCreek Quilts, designed by Joe Wood. I started this quilt at a Block Party at Ruth's Stitchery in 2013.  I had the twelve blocks in the pattern finished when My Little Sailor announced, "You know I have a full-size bed now, Mom!"

So I added eight more blocks. Each of the blocks I added means something to Jacob. The bottom two rows are the blocks I added.

From left to right, starting with the second row from the bottom:
Jacob's Ladder, Port and Starboard, Blacks and Tans (summer Navy uniform), One More Block (because I needed a 20th block!), Centennial Star (Colorado is the Centennial State), Martha Washington Star (his Mom's name is Martha, and he was born in Washington), Chinook
(the wind that blows down the mountains), Waves of the Sea.

The sashing is a Daiwabo fabric (from Japan!). It is an ombre design, going from dark to light to dark across the width of the fabric. It's cut into 1½" squares and set in a checkerboard design. I think the sashing looks like cobblestone streets. Because the pattern only has 12 blocks, I didn't buy enough to sash all 20 blocks. Friend Cathy to the rescue, she donated 1/2 yard of her sashing fabric so I could have the same sashing throughout! I have four more borders to add, then it will be ready for the quilter.  My plan is to take it to Japan with me in August when My Little Sailor re-enlists in the US Navy.

What is your favorite UFO?

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Sunday Stash

I'm learning what my co-workers mean about spending one's paycheck before it is earned! Seeing the new stuff come into the shop every day makes it hard to resist!

Although this post will look like I've done nothing but shop this month, most of the "stash enhancement" is from Christmas.

I have so many photos to share, I think I'll only show the fabric this week. Next Sunday, I'll show off the patterns.

One of my Christmas-prezzies-to-myself was this fat quarter bundle from Minnick & Simpson, "Crazy for Red." I bought it thinking I would use some of it for my "A Quilt Block a Day" challenge. But it's so pretty, I can't bear to untie the ribbon!

Remember how I added the Tula Pink mystery to my 2016 UFO list? I was thrilled to find this Tula wide back in coral and pink. I love it so much, I've left it on the cutting table to admire!

My family home is in Melba, Idaho. Emma Jean Jansen designed the "Melba" collection for ella blue.

Emma Jean is an Australian designer, but we have these black-and-white Magpies in Idaho, too!

On my return from the last post-holiday airport run, I stopped off at Sew-Ciety in Castle Rock. It was hard, but I limited myself to this "Canyon" by Kate Spain charm pack:

and Amy Ellis's "Chic Neutrals" layer cake. Dona at Ruth's Stitchery made a sample quilt this month using the "City Blocks" pattern. I think it will be perfect for this layer cake!

Included in my Andover fabric for Lovebug Studios' "Dear Laura" mystery, I scored this "Fresh Cut" charm pack from BasicGrey. My favorite line of blenders! Westwood Acres Fabric offered a "mystery charm pack," so I didn't resist!

Today is "Staff Sew-in Day" at the shop. I'm determined to finish my January UFO! What are you sewing today?

From the desk of your auntmartisignature