Thursday, September 22, 2016

quilt guild challenge

Well hello friends! I honestly didn't mean to take a blogging break. To be truthful, I've kind of been jumping from project to project lately, not really finishing anything. Until today! Whew. I finally have something to share with you.

At our last meeting of the McKinney Modern Quilt Guild, we were issued a new challenge. First off, we all brought a one yard piece of fabric that was one of the two Pantone colors of the year. (let me just say, WHY ARE THERE TWO? pick one, silly people! Also, seriously? I feel like I'm back in the 80s with mauves and blues. Ok. I'm done ranting.) So, anyways, everyone brought a yard of fabric in either rose quartz or serenity. Then we had a "one yard rip off". Has your guild ever done this? I know I've told you about them before, but seriously, so much fun!  And you go home with a fun stack of fabrics to make a challenge item out of. Awesome, right?

Until Alice comes out with the dreaded bag of paint chips & adds a twist to the challenge. UGH! I pulled out a bright yellow paint chip that I had to incorporate into my challenge item. Oh joy!

I wanted to do something modern and learn something new. I had been eyeing this tutorial  for a modern wonky churn dash block, so I started cranking them out. Combined with lots of negative space, some simple straight line grid work quilting and some matched binding and this is where I ended up....
Not horrible, right? I mean, in better  colors, it might actually be a cool baby quilt. I especially love my tone-on-tone churn dashes that kind of disappear into the background fabrics. 

Something I learned..... although Jennifer at 42 quilts (the blogger who wrote the block tutorial) says it's ok if you lose your points off the edge of your block, the blocks I like the best have all of their points in tact. If I were to do this again, I'd be more deliberate in my cutting. Personal preference, that's all.

So there you have it. The challenge isn't due until November, but mine is done! Now I can move on to other fun things (and hopefully check back in here sooner rather than later). 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Triad meets McKinney swap... received!

A couple of weeks ago I shared the quilt I sent to Kim in the Triad Modern Quilt guild for our swap. Well Tuesday night, it was finally our turn to receive quilts! I couldn't believe Alice, our swap queen, kept that box from NC taped up tight and opened it in front of all of us. Seriously, if that box had arrived at my house I would have peeked! No kidding.
Look how happy we all are with what we received! Those Triad gals pulled out all the stops.

Of course I was incredibly happy with the fabulous quilt I received from Katie! She took my favorite Squirrel pattern (found here, by Quiet Play), shrank it down and made not one... but FOUR squirrels!

Katie said the way the colors popped reminded her of an Andy Warhol painting, and I totally agree! such fun. 

The colors and fabrics she used are so great. This is going to make me smile every time I look at it.
There was some talk at our meeting about making this swap an annual event. I sure hope we do! It was great to connect with a sister guild. Thanks Katie! You rock!

Monday, September 5, 2016

My Small World - a finish!

Last year, the quilting world was in a tizzy. Everyone was searching for the special issue of Quiltmania that had Jen Kingwell's My Small World quilt pattern in it. Add me to that list. I searched every Barnes & Noble I had access to. Had friends looking. I couldn't find it anywhere. I was bummed. Then I heard that Jen Kingwell was going to release it as a stand alone pattern in the fall! Hooray! I bought it the day it became available. I thought "someday I'll make this" and I tucked it away. That was that. Or so I thought.....

Toward the end of the year, Nicole announced on Instagram that she'd be hosting a quilt along after the first of the year. I only hesitated a minute. The pattern is daunting.... but maybe, with the encouragement of other quilters. I could do it! Yes! Yes I could. I started digging in my fabric stash. Bought a few novelty prints that I knew I'd love to add and off I went!

Yesterday I put the final stitches in my binding. I'm so excited to share it with you!
My friend Sandy quilted it for me. I love how the swirls look like wind blowing through the sky...

I'm so happy I added that little rainstorm! And a smattering of yellow sunshine.
Those arched triangles were daunting! But I used @sewwhatsherlock's paper piece pattern for them and it worked like a charm!
I just love how you can add little fussy cut details to make this quilt your own. Some of my favorite details are my ballet studio and the Happiness Hotel in section one.
I used almost all fabric from my scrappy stash. Thought it would make a huge dent in my scrap bins but, no. There's still plenty in there.

This is my final finish in the third quarter of the 2016 Finish Along. A whole month early!  I'm so glad I tackled this project. It was great fun!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Triad meets McKinney swap

I'm so happy I can finally share a finish (and one of my third quarter goals for the finish along!) Earlier this year, the McKinney Modern Quilt Guild (my guild, here in Texas) set up a mini quilt swap with the Triad Modern Guild in North Carolina. It was fun to be assigned a partner in another guild who I had never met! When I got Kim's info, I learned that she liked foundation paper piecing (among other things) and loved the colors "plum pink and pickle green" Hmmm! Not colors I had a lot of in my stash, so off I went shopping! Also, I had been dying to try lillyella's Take Wing pattern and this seemed like a great time to do that.

Now that Kim has received her quilt I can share it with you here! I love the way this turned out. The pattern stretched me (and perhaps proved to me that I have finally somewhat mastered paper piecing!). It's a complex pattern but totally doable if you take it one section at a time.
I took my lead from lillyella's pattern and machine quilted radiating lines around the butterfly, which matched my quilting skill level (aka beginner) and made the butterfly look like it was in motion which I loved.
I would love to make this pattern again and highly recommend it to all of you.

I can hardly wait for our September 6 meeting, where we will receive our minis from the swap!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016


This year the theme of the Row by Row Experience is Home. I always collect a handful of the patterns from nearby shops & have been known to incorporate portions of rows into projects, but I've never actually made one of the rows before (much less made a whole quilt of them, but that's still true).  When I saw the row at Urban Spools this year, I knew I wanted to make it. Of course, the fact that it was designed by my friend Melissa made it even more special! And, I LOVED the fabrics they had chosen for the row, so I actually bought the KIT! People, that is something I NEVER EVER do.... I'm totally not a kit person. I like to put my own spin on things. So you KNOW it was awesome if I did this!

This Dallas skyline is all paper pieced (and some of the pieces were teenie tiny! scared me to death) but the pattern was super easy to follow and I love the way it came together. Dallas has been our adopted home for 14 years now, and though I miss my buddies back in the midwest, I honestly can't imagine ever living anywhere else! I may grumble a bit on the 100+ degree days, but when my pals are shoveling "white stuff" in January & freezing their noses off, I'm quite happy in the south!

And now I'm happy to have this finished row to hang in my studio. Thanks Melissa for your awesome design!

Saturday, August 13, 2016


Another finish for my third quarter finish-along goals!Six pillows for Ally's apartment done and happily hanging out on her couch.
Fabrics are all black/white/gold cotton prints from Hobby Lobby (with added kona black in the patchwork pillow). Two 18" pillows, one 16", one 14" and two 12"x16" rectangles. They look so good in her happy new home!

Just one more finish to go for this quarter for me.... and it's a doozy! I've been cranking away on My Small World quilt & hope to have the topper done very soon.... whew!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

matching dresses

I haven't made matching dresses for my girls since they were little. Really little. As in, say one and seven? I do believe the last matching dresses I made for them had bunnies on them. So when they asked me to make them matching San Francisco Swing dresses in gray I thought they were nuts. And then I thought, what the heck? I mean, they live clear across the country from each other so the likelihood of them wearing them together is slim to none. 

So, the dresses are made and delivered and they both love them! Yay! Ally & I went out for a bit of a photo shoot today. She found this quote on a building that made her smile....
And Leigh Anne sent me this great shot from New York City (seriously, they have THE BEST graffiti there!)
 These dresses are my third finish in the 2016 Finish along for this quarter. I'm really happy about that. Oh, and if you need a giggle, check out these shots of Ally....

Have a wonderful day!