Friday, January 31, 2014

Celtic Solstice Mystery Quilt Finished!

Yay...I'm happy to say that my Celtic Solstice quilt is finished!  This is the 5th mystery I've done with Bonnie and I can honestly say that I love all of them.  I love using fabrics from my stash and finally putting them to use!

While shoveling snow this morning, I decided to take the quilt outside for a quick picture...it wasn't as easy as I thought it might be.  LOL  We have 6" or so of new snow on top of the remainder of the last snow storm.  It seems many parts of the country are getting a good amount of this white stuff.  I think this is pretty typical for this area.  Hubby has been out of town for a few weeks and he's bummed to be missing it!

The snow is really dry and powdery, so it didn't stick to the quilt much, but it's going in the washer after the photo shoot, so it didn't matter if it got a little wet.  :)

Okay...shoveling is done...back inside.  I did a fun swirly quilting design called "Blowin' Wind."  It's hard to see in the picture, but the black border and binding are "scrappy" made using the same blacks from the pieced center of the quilt.

I did buy the backing new...but it was on a clearance sale, so that's okay right?  LOL

Thank you Bonnie, for another great pattern and quilt to add to my collection!  I'm not sure if this one will be gifted or kept for me...I'll have to think on that one for just a little while.

My mom has gone home now.  :(  It was a great week with her and we had lots of fun sewing, chatting, shopping, etc.  I was sad to see her go.  Here are a few more projects we worked on...I made this cute mini spools wallhanging from Thimble Blossoms.  It measures about 14" x 16".  I used a charm pack called "Round Robin" and I love it!  So fun!

While at the LQS, my mom noticed a shop sample of these Snap Happy bags...she had never seen them before and thought they would be good for the craft show her neighborhood does in the fall.  She whipped up all of these, except the one with stars and stripes...I made that one.  Didn't she do a great job!  

Can't wait to see the progress on everyone's mystery quilt!  Be sure to check out her page to see all the progress...click HERE!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle
Monday, January 27, 2014

Weekend Sew-a-thon

 My mom is visiting this week from California and part of our plan was to spend as much time sewing as we could possibly squeeze in...and so far, we are doing a good job of it!  

This weekend, she made this cute tote bag using the Charm Party Tote pattern.

I finished the binding on this quilt for my nephew...I used all outdoor type fabrics with the Yellow Brick Road pattern....(you can click the picture for a closer look)...

and had a little fun with the quilting...

 You might remember I participated in Terry's sew along last year called "Scrappy Stars," I finally got my stars set in to a top.  I tried lots of different options, but decided simple was best.  I think my mom has claimed this one!

 I also assembled this quilt for another nephew...he loves soccer and "dark yellow" is his favorite color, so I hope this quilt makes him happy!

I also got the binding on my Celtic Solstice mystery....and had a little "help."

We're sewing again today...we had planned a day of shopping and lunch, but we woke up to over 4" of snow and it's still coming down, so we decided to make it another sewing day!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

First finish for 2014

Well, we are 2/3rds of the way through January and I finally have a finish!  This is a block of the month I did last year called Warm Winter Blessings, by Primitive Gatherings.  I just love it!  I think I quilted this just after Christmas, then I was really pokey doing the binding...but I was determined to have it finished so I could hang it up in January...heck, it may stay up all "winter," which lasts until March or April in these parts.  :)

I really enjoyed working with the wool on this one and didn't want to see it end!  I tried my hand at a little "custom quilting" on this one.  I have sooo MUCH to learn and need to improve my skills, but I'm happy with it.  I had fun trying a few different designs in the background behind the snowman.

A bit of a wonky picture...but this is one of my favorite blocks and then I was pretty happy with the quilting design I tried.

I braved the freezing temps to get an outside picture (miraculously, there is no wind!), just to see if I can get a better pic of the true colors...by now you've likely seen the Snowman Gatherings fabric line that is used in this BOM/kit.  Love the blues!

The pattern calls for a 5" border all the way around beyond the checkerboard border...that made it a little too large for a wall hanging, in my opinion, so I left them off.  I had a perfect spot to hang it here in the foyer.  Love it!!  Someday in my "forever house," I'll buy a quilt hanger/rack for it...but for now, my trusty 3M hangers will do.

Hopefully I'll have more finishes soon!  I have been making progress on a few things, so if things go as planned, I'll be sharing more soon!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle



Sunday, January 19, 2014

Weekend Check in

We had a great week away helping our son move to his new duty station.  He was assigned to Columbus AFB in Mississippi and now he is in Florida at Patrick AFB.  I've never paid too much attention to where this base was located, although we did visit once before about 10 years ago.  I guess some things just don't stick in your brain...but this base is literally right on the beach with the Banana River on the opposite side.  

Zach is excited for this new adventure and plans to fully take advantage of beach life!



This picture was taken standing in the driveway of his new apartment...cross that road and you are on the beach!  It was amazing the difference in rent prices to live on the beach side of the road compared to living across the street.  LOL  He's a smart boy...

No sewing going on this week, but I wanted to share some info I received through email.  I'm sure most of you have heard of the "Farmer's Wife" sampler quilt/book.  I started this project a 2-3 years ago.

I am piecing them using Marti Michell's templates...she has made conversion charts for almost all of the blocks in the book.  I think there are only 10-11 that she wasn't able to convert to her templates.

I received an email saying that they were starting another email series of the charts again and if you'd like to receive the charts, click HERE to sign up.  You must go through their Facebook page right now to sign up as they are having a glitch in the sign up through their website.

Seeing this project again, makes me want to pull it back out and work on it.  I don't know that I'll make ALL the blocks...but I need to finish it one way or another.

Hope you all have a fun, quilty week!
~Michelle
Saturday, January 11, 2014

Goodnight Irene Sew Along

New year, new projects...right?  Honestly, I'm trying to keep new projects to a minimum, but when Terry at Terry's Treasures announced a new sew along back in November, I caved.  :)  I've been wanting to make a one color quilt for forever and I thought this would be a good option!  The problem was, I didn't know which color I wanted to start with.  Red and blue are always good, but I've made a few quilts with those colors recently and I have plans for a couple more, so I really wanted something else...and maybe even outside my box a little.  I asked my niece what her favorite color is and she answered "hot pink!"  So hot pink it is!  LOL

But first, I wanted to make these portable design boards after seeing them on JoAnne's blog.  I usually use my 12 1/2" square ruler to layout my block units...then I don't have my ruler handy to use should I need it!  I made these 12 1/2" and used leftover binding strips for the edges.  I think I will need a couple of larger sizes next!  They were pretty easy to make...a little more time consuming than I expected...but maybe I just get bored easily.  As you can see, I put them right to work!

I laid out squares for four blocks, then stacked them up and took them to the sewing machine.  I generally sew one block at a time like this, mainly because I'm a little OCD about what fabric is next to what.  :P  This picture was taken the earliest in the day, so with the good lighting this shows the colors pretty accurately.  Very pink!

Here are my sew along blocks for January.  I'm going to make this quilt a little larger than Terry's, so I'll make 7 blocks each month.  Man, those black X's really stand out, don't they?  I hope this combination works!

I was tempted to keep going as I really wanted to see the pink square blocks start to pop out...but the truth is...I need more pinks!!  I cut up everything in my stash and have enough to do about 1/2 the blocks I'll need.  I do not have any pink yardage left.  Yay!  Of course, it was probably the color that I had the least amount of...but still, it feels good to be using this stuff up!  I think I'll look for a couple more HOT PINK fq's to add in.

Of course, in true Bonnie fashion, I made bonus triangles...and had to play a little.  Love these chevrons that are popping up everywhere these days.... 

or just a straight setting is very dramatic...(I -thought- I was taking a straight picture....apparently not)

And of course, I have to try a star...

Thanks Terry for a fun sew along...it's not too late to join in!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Celtic Solstice Update

(Click here for Bonnie's linky page to see everyone else's progress)

In past years, Bonnie has given us a bonus clue sometime around New Year's Eve or Day...and this year she did it again!  At midnight on NYE, eastern time, which was only 10pm for me...she posted the final reveal and layout.  Wowsers...I was so happy to see the final quilt...I love it!!  Mysteries are always a gamble, but Bonnie's are usually a sure thing, so I don't know what I was worried about.  :)  

I'm so happy with the colors I chose....I wouldn't change a thing.  Except maybe the name.  Celtic Solstice doesn't seem like the right name for mine...I'll have to see if I can come up with something.  
I love the circular design that pops out after sewing the blocks together.

I sewed my border just a bit different from Bonnie's...I think this diamond effect works nicely with the colors in my quilt.  I added the square in a square block in each of the corners to finish it off a little bit.  I even got the cutting directions for a 3" square in a square block from one of Bonnie's tutorial pages!  She is just awesome!

It's a little smaller than I had expected it to be even though I knew it was going to end up 75" square...in my head I thought it would be bigger.  Silly me.  I REALLY, really, considered making a few more blocks to fit our queen size bed, but then looked at my pile of other projects to finish.  Reality set in and I decided I better stop here and call it good.  It's a good "couch" size as my daughter would say, and I agree!

This picture shows the colors pretty well, except the blue seems to be "glowing" a little more than in real life.  :)

Little Nick was getting acquainted with his new job as quilt inspector...he seemed quite eager for the job!

By the way, our daughter is home visiting from England this week.  I brought my sewing machine to the dining room...this way, she can work on papers on her computer or play games and I can sew...but we can still visit and we're not in separate rooms.  It's been lots of fun having a companion while I sew!

Thank you once again, Bonnie, for an awesome mystery quilt!  The last few weeks have been fun and something I look forward to every year!

Don't forget to see everyone else's progress on Bonnie's page when she posts the linky on Monday!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Happy Twenty-Fourteen!

Can you believe it?  It's 2014 already.  14 is my favorite number...so maybe that means this will be a good year?  What am I saying...every year is a good year because I am blessed with good health, a wonderful family and a nice size fabric stash!  LOL!

We woke up to a light snow falling...it looks so fresh and pure...a great way to start the new year!

I've had a couple leisurely days this week, so plenty of time to sew up a couple projects.  These blocks are for our local guild.  A couple months ago, they had packets made up with fabrics and a block pattern...if you chose to take one, you sewed up as many blocks as you could with the fabric inside.  This is the fabric/block I chose...it's called Crockett's Cabin.  I wasn't particularly excited about the fabric choices, but since it wasn't something that wasn't really "mine," I just went with it....and I was pleasantly surprised.  It's a great block!  The blocks will be assembled with other blocks to make sampler style quilts for charity.

I did switch up the placement a little to make a dark and a light version.  I think I prefer the dark version.

Although these blocks won't be assembled together, I wanted to see what they would look like....

 Hmmm...I really like that secondary design that comes out.  I'll definitely have to keep this block in mind for the future...it would be a great scrap quilt too!

Remember this UFO from just a couple of days ago?

Ta-da!!  I just whipped up a few more Scrappy Trips blocks and I have this 44" square baby quilt.  The border strips are made from the leftover sewn strips from the center blocks.  So quick and easy!!  Now it goes on the "to be quilted" list.  LOL

But the best part...an empty bin!!  woohoo!!

Hope you have a wonderful first day of 2014!

Happy Quilting,
Michelle