Thursday, March 25, 2010

Frame Quilting

Ah! Back to quilting on my frame.

After quilting on my Bernina with the really tight quilting I did on Cinderella's Dream it is such a relief to move back to big quilts on my frame. They go SO much faster and it is rather soothing to quilt.

My shoulders don't ache as much as I don't seem to place them in my ears like I do when quilting on my regular sewing machine :)

This is my cousin's quilt. She sewed it together on our family retreat last month and sent it home with me to quilt. I used a meander with freeform dragonflies to quilt it. I freemotion quilt, so they are random and very freeform :P

This one is done and I've got a challenge of a quilt on the frame now. It is from my sister. She started hand quilting a log cabin a long time ago and realized she would never finish it, so she handed it off to me. I'm working from the center out as she didn't want to take the time needed to remove the hand quilting (located in the center) as she would just like the quilt to be DONE. I'm enjoying the quilt, just had to wrap my mind around how to quilt it without distorting it too much!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


we have been on the go for way too long. I'm someone who recharges when alone and not pressured to get things done. So, I'm exhausted and need to recharge.

Last week The Peanut and This Guy were here for Spring Break. We had a great time and they were not any fuss...we just added them to our hectic week! I did have to run The Peanut over to Ohio to update her ID card, that took a big chunk out of one day.

We did celebrate her birthday when she was home...she decorated her own cake, let me put all of the candles on and light them. It lit up the room! No smoke detector went off, though ;)

Well, off to bed so I can sleep. Tomorrow I hope to finish quilting my cousin's quilt and put my sister's quilt on the frame. So I need my beauty sleep ;)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


I have finished my challenge quilt, and it is all packed up and ready to mail out. WHEW!
This is for the Create a Bali Keepsake Challenge and I am sending it off, crossing my fingers that it gets there before the deadline on Monday. 
I have named this quilt Cinderella's Dream. I started out with a design inspired by a rug and when the fabrics came I revamped my design (simplified it mightily) and with the pink...I knew it had to have a princess name! While working on the quilt I had an earworm from the group Silverwind (an 80's Contemporary Christian band) and the song was Cinderella's Dream, so the name of the quilt was born.

I spent over 20 hours on the quilting. First I did machine trapunto, then outlined the trapuntoed areas with invisible thread and then I did this micro quilting...I mainly did McTavish inspired quilting, but also did some pebbling. There is a ring of feathers in the center, just because that area was calling out for it.

Using dissolving thread helped in the trapunto process, but then I had to do more than a light soaking to get the thread out of the quilt. My first try left the quilt feeling like cardboard sandpaper, so I had to agitate it in the front loader to really work out the dissolving stitches.

The back is pretty neat. You can see the quilting so much better because of the great contrast between the navy batik and the pink quilting thread. BUT it also shows all the oops moments *sigh* I've been informed that oops moments are common experience for quilters, it is just hard when you are sending a quilt off and then you see them (and know that there is no more time left for fixing them).

I have the back prepped for the challenge, that is why there are two squares of fabric pinned to the back (the fabrics I added) and you can see the top of the entry form peeking up at you in the bottom left.

Off to the Post Office!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Entering the Home Stretch

I've almost got the challenge quilt quilted. Just slightly over 1/4 of the borders to finish quilting. I gave up for the day as I was getting a tension headache and a very stiff back from quilting...

I also started prepping the binding. I'll be doing the Ricky Tims' method of piped binding, so I cut and made the piping and cut the binding strips.

Hopefully, I can get it in the mail on Monday or Tuesday at the very latest! And post pictures of it ;)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Snow Dyeing

Before the snow melts away, I thought I would try snow dyeing. I've seen snow dyed fabric for sale, seen tutorials on the internet and decided to give it a try.

First I prepped my fabric and scrunched it up in the container. Boring picture, white fabric in white picture is boring, too, it has white snow on white fabric, in a white dishpan :)

I mixed up blue and red dyes and poured them over the snow. I poured the blue in one direction and the red in the other, making a crosshatch...why? because it looked nice for a while.

Then it was a waiting game. Wait and wait and wait for the snow to melt.

It was the next morning before the snow was melted away.

I took out the fabric, rinsed until the water ran clear, washed the fabric with some dye fixing stuff (can't remember which I used), and then dried it...and took these pictures out on the snow:

My conclusion? It is a pretty piece of fabric, but I'd rather do regular Low Water Immersion Dyeing as it gives similar results in much less time. I'm impatient and didn't like waiting for the snow to melt. The difference in the end product is not great enough for me to continue to snow dye (plus it is looking like spring is on it's way!!!!).

Monday, March 8, 2010

Design Wall Monday

Nothing new on my design still looks like it did last Monday.

Why? Because I have been spending hours and hours doing micro quilting on my challenge quilt. I have 3/4 of the field quilted and almost half of the borders quilted. Then I will have to dissolve the wash away stitches, block and bind it. I have a deadline that I hope to meet without paying big bucks to ship!

I have been looking at shipping options and think I will be using a mailing tube. This quilt is stiff as cardboard from all of the quilting and if I roll it, it shouldn't have crease marks, right????

To be inspired by other quilters on Design Wall Monday visit Patchwork Times.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Am I allowed to feel old?

The Peanut turns 21 tomorrow. Where has the time gone? I still remember all the goofy things she did when she was tiny. Are you sure this is that same little one?

This birthday we won't celebrate together. Spring Break starts next weekend, so we will celebrate on Sunday. She has asked for Roast Beef (she says mine is WAY better than institutional food) and I'll bake a cake :) I'm not sure if she will decorate her own cake or if she will let me...what do you think? Should I just go ahead? Maybe make a princess cake? Or a Barbie Cake, wouldn't that embarrass her?

She is bring home "this guy..." from school. We haven't met him yet. Should be an interesting Spring Break :)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Design Wall Monday (and belated stash report)

This is another project I worked on at the family quilt retreat. I've been unsewing part of these blocks as I got the HSTs the wrong way on some of the sashing strips. I am really excited about how this is turning out in batiks :) At first I thought maybe my dark and light background fabrics were too close to one another, but in the photo (and on the design wall) I'm seeing they have just enough contrast (good, I'd rather not recut one of them!).

The pattern is called Lacy Lou and is in Judy Laquidara's new book Weekend Quilts.

I've been neglecting my stash updates (shame on me!) so I'll tack it on here. I have purchased 7 1/2 yards of fabric (EEK!) over the last couple of weeks and I have used 4 yards (I'm not counting a quilt until it is further along than the one on my design I'll catch up soon!).

Check out other design wall updates at Patchwork Times