Saturday, December 22, 2012

Saturday "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas" Stash

Elder Son and I have a theory that there are two kinds of people in this world as far as gifts are concerned:  Those who want what they want, and those who want to be surprised.  ES and I are of the "want what we want" school of thought.  Younger Son wants to be surprised -- with exactly what he wants.

This theory makes Christmas easy on DH.  I just buy what I want and say "Look what you got me for Christmas."  He did particularly well this year.

See this?  It's a Moda Bella Solids color card.  Since most of my Jelly Roll Party quilts for 2013 will be made from Moda Jelly Rolls, won't it be nice to see what solids go with?  This is the kind of gift every quilter would love, but probably wouldn't buy for herself.

In addition (and to take advantage of Hancocks of Paducah's discount and free shipping offer:

If you buy an entire bolt, the cost is less than $6 per yard!

I also completed my Madrona Road collection with the help of Sew Fresh Fabrics:

Can't wait to start on my Front Range Modern Quilt Guild challenge pillow.

Some people send "fruit of the month club" gifts.  I prefer the "Stash Stack Club" from Pink Castle Fabrics -- brown this month.

This is the second year in a row I've scored Lizzy House's holiday bundle.  It even has a bit of her newest collection, "Constellation!"  I can't bear to unwrap it, they look so pretty stacked up.

If you're buying it to make gifts, does it still count as a gift to yourself?  This is "Type" by Julia Rothman for Windham Fabrics.  Got the first few pieces from my favorite etsy shop, FreshSqueezedFabrics, and completed the collection with further help from Sew Fresh Fabrics.

Stay tuned in January to see what they will become!

One of the BOM clubs I joined for 2013 at Ruth's Stitchery is "Ryokan."  A Ryokan is a Japanese Inn, appropriate for My Little Sailor who is stationed in Japan.  I thought I had some leftover Japanese Taupes from two graduation quilts, but I must have used up all the scraps.  High Country Quilts had a few Daiwabo prints:

I'm thinking I'll use these prints from Sew Fresh Fabrics for the borders:

Has anyone heard if Sinta and Sherri will continue Another Year of Schnibbles in 2013?  I'm ready, if they do!   Who could resist BasicGrey's new collection, "Kissing Booth?"

One of my great-nephews missed out on the "12th Birthday" quilt, so I picked up this beauty at Suppose quilt boutique in Preston on my most recent trip to Idaho.  Unfortunately, the kit doesn't contain enough fabric for a queen-size quilt.  Lucky for me, Kathy had enough of the Kaffe Fassett stripes to make up a second kit, sans pattern.  Also lucky for me, his birthday is in December, so I have a whole year to make this quilt!

I pre-ordered this book from Amazon and it about killed me not to buy it when I saw it in the store before I received my copy:

So fun to look through and say "Hey, I read her blog!"

Can you believe the newest Miss Rosie's Quilt Shop pattern requires Flying Geese?  I tell you, the Universe is conspiring against me:

I ordered the rulers that Carrie recommends.  We'll see if they can make me like Flying Geese!

Now, I didn't buy ALL my own Christmas prezzies!  Look at this adorable chicken made by friend Mary:

It's a pincushion!  Can you see the matching pink scissors?  Too cute!

I ordered these Fimo people from the daughter of Randi, owner of FreshSqueezedFabrics.  I planned to give them as gifts, but really, they are so cute . . . .

Aubrey even made an "Aunt Marti" figure.  DH says the purple one is a teletubby -- Tinky Winky.  We won't say why he knows that!

Here's hoping Santa brings you just what you want -- surprise or not!

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Friday, December 21, 2012

A Friday Finish: Happy Solstice!

Each season, Karen Snyder of Anna Lena Land hosts a "Block-a-Day" QAL challenge.  For Autumn 2012, the block is "Tessellating Crosses."  This is an easy block, conducive to strip piecing and using up a lot of scraps!

I made mine in black-white-and-yellow, based on a Jelly Roll from Benartex fabrics, "Lemon Tree."

Ninety 8" blocks and borders resulted in a quilt that measures 92" X 82" -- big enough for a full-size bed.

When I first started putting the blocks up on the design wall, I thought the tessellating pattern wouldn't show. But with all the blocks together, I like the secondary pattern of light crosses:

I am searching for a black, white, and yellow quilting weight thread to quilt this.  If I can't find it, I'll use black.  Or maybe yellow?  What do you think?

To celebrate, I'm linking up to Thank Goodness it's Finally Finished Friday, hosted this week by Karen at Sew Well Maide.

Getting caught up in piecing my Block-a-Day quilt, I have fallen sadly behind on my 30 Quilts in 60 Days goal.  Only one quilt quilted this week, and it's a baby quilt for my nephew's new baby girl:

There are 10 days left in 2012, and I have six more flimsies to quilt in order to meet my goal.  Can I do it?

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

WIP Wednesday

A helpful hint:  If your BOM quilt has a "finishing kit," or sashing or setting blocks, make a few each month as you go along.  For one thing, it is fun to watch the "finished" quilt take shape.  For another, it's too easy to toss the blocks in the UFO cupboard and never finish the quilt when faced with (shudder) Flying Geese sashing!

I don't know how many quilters are making Fat Quarter Shop's Designer Mystery BOM, but I bet it's a lot.  I love Bonnie and Camille's Vintage Modern.  So much, I'm thinking of adding some more blocks to make a Full-bed sized quilt and redecorating my guest room to match this quilt!  The turquoise in a lighter shade would be so soothing, and the room already has green carpeting that matches the green in this collection perfectly.

As of this morning, I am all caught up on my Designer Mystery BOM.  Here is the December block, Block 7, Moonlight Serenade.  It was designed by Sandy Gervais of Pieces from my Heart.  I even made the sashing for this row:

Here are all my blocks and the vertical sashings for the completed blocks:

More than halfway there!  Posting to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced:


Now I need to get back to quilting and binding -- I've only quilted one quilt this week!

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Tuesday Tool: The Dreaded Flying Geese

It's no secret that I don't care for Flying Geese blocks.  It's not that I don't like the way they look, or that they are hard to make, or that they take a little extra care to make them perfect.

It's that, not matter what technique, ruler, or method I use -- the "wings" never come out even across the top.  

Today, I want to share with you a method of making Flying Geese that requires no math, no measuring, and makes four geese at a time.

The Lazy Girl's "Flying Geese X 4 No Math Ruler" doesn't make sewing Flying Geese blocks easier.  It just makes it faster.

The Flying Geese X 4 ruler is marked for twelve sizes of geese.  Simply select the size geese you need, and cut one square on the corresponding solid line:

This will make the "body" part of the geese.

Next, cut three squares on the corresponding dotted line:

These are the "wings."

For the "Easy Street" mystery, I wanted "scrappy" geese, so I cut the two larger squares from different fabrics, and used six different blue fabrics for the wings.

Place the smaller squares on opposite corners of the large square and draw a line diagonally from corner to corner.  Then sew a scant 1/4" on either side of the line:

Cut on the line and press toward the small triangles (the "wings" of your geese):

Again, because I wanted "scrappy" geese, I made two sets at once.  That way, I will get eight different geese.

Next, place a third smaller square at the "empty" corner of the geese "body," matching up the raw edges.

Draw a diagonal line corner to corner on the smaller square and sew a scant 1/4" seam on either side of the line.  It is important to begin your stitching line exactly where the small squares meet -- this will improve the chances of your geese's "wings" being even:

Cut on the line and press toward the smaller triangle:

Remember, each large square makes four geese units, so count accordingly!

It will be easier to sew your geese together if they are trimmed to the exact size.  Eleanor Burn's small Flying Geese template is the right size to trim the geese for Easy Street.

Even taking all these photos, I had my 64 geese in less than one hour!

Did you know a group of geese is called a gaggle?

Tomorrow is WIP Wednesday, and I have another Designer Mystery BOM block to share, along with some of the setting blocks.  

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday Mystery and BOMday

I know I'm not the only one following Bonnie Hunter's "Easy Street" mystery.  There were more than 240 participants in last week's linkup!  So before I share the ubiquitous "purple flying geese" photo, I'll show off my most recent Designer Mystery BOM blocks.

I ordered the setting kit.  Guess since I'm now halfway finished with the blocks, I should start on the setting, huh?  Except it has a whole bunch of -- you guessed it -- FLYING GEESE!!

I'm quite proud of myself for keeping up with the Easy Street mystery.

Yesterday I made another gaggle of flying geese, using a new method:

And cut 145 squares from the green fabrics.  My greens aren't quite as yellow as they look in this photo:

Linking up to the Easy Street Mystery Part 4 linkup.  And also Plum and June's "Let's Get Acquainted" linkup.

Plum and June

Tune in tomorrow for a Flying Geese tutorial, using the Lazy Girl's "Flying Geese X 4 No Math Ruler."

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Sugar Block Club Winner

Before I announce the winner of the Sugar Block Club membership, a word about comments.

The server for my computer is housed at a University which has a very strict "spam" filter.  Any comments that come from a "no-reply" commenter are automatically placed in the spam folder.  Any email that has "forward," "FWD" or "fwd" in the subject line is automatically placed in the trash folder.  Anything the University server just doesn't like is automatically placed in the spam folder.

I reply to every comment and every message.  So if you haven't heard from me on your comment, you might be a redneck.  I mean, you might be a no-reply commenter.  Karen of Sew Many Ways has an easy tutorial to fix the "no-reply commenter" problem. Just click here and follow her easy directions.  At this time, I have not disabled "anonymous" comments -- but if you don't include an email in your comment, I can't answer you.  And I can't find you if you're chosen as a giveaway winner.

And most importantly! you can't receive your membership in the Sugar Block club if you win!

It was interesting to count your "favorite" blocks.  The "winning" most-favorite block among my readers was "Log Cabin."  One of my earliest posts was a Log Cabin tutorial, using Marti Mitchell's log cabin ruler.  Hmm, that quilt is still in the UFO collection.  Guess I'll have to add that to the 2013 UFO Challenge!

Log Cabin was closely followed by "Stars" as the "favorite block."  As I search back through the blog history, I find I have never written a tutorial on a star block.  Last year at this time, I did show off my little Star tree ornament, from Betz White's tutorial.

Those two are the only blocks that received more than 10 votes.  It was fun learning what your "favorites" are, as well as seeing some unknown-to-me blocks.

Maybe Amy will have some unknown-to-me-blocks in the Sugar Block Club!

And so, without further ado, Mr. Random Number Generator:

Who is Nurse Jessi, who said:

Jessi lives in Texas and blogs at The Rusty Nail.  Congratulations, Jessi!

If you didn't win, you can go here to sign yourself up.  It's gonna be great!  Amy says "12 months 12 blocks 12 sweet recipes."  Thank you, Amy, for not asking me to test your recipes.  It wouldn't be "a good thing!"

From the desk of your auntmartisignature