Friday, February 25, 2011

nyb giveaway...

As promised I have a giveaway to help you get down to business with some New York Beauty blocks! One of my favorite parts of making this quilt was digging into a pile of bright colors and black and white prints. So up for grabs, courtesy of Old Country Store Fabrics, your choice of fat quarters! There are two bundles to choose from - each set has 8 fat quarters.

Do you need more brights? Check out the Happy by Moda bundle!

Do you need more black and white prints? Check out the Bali Batiks by Hoffman! [a note on these: YES they are batiks, but they are very subtle as you can see in the photo. Though I am not usually a batik kind of girl, I really like these!]

All you have to do to enter is JUST LEAVE A COMMENT ON THIS POST! Let me know which bundle you like best and make sure there is a way to contact you. If you use blogger, make sure you have an email address connected to it [Great tutorial here].

I will pick a winner next Friday morning. [3/4/11]

Thursday, February 24, 2011

new york beauties...

Has it hit you? You know, that moment of craft inspiration. You are poking around flickr, reading blogs, at a quilt guild meeting and it just hits you... "I NEED that" says the little voice in your head. That moment of inspiration hit when I saw Jennie's gorgeous New York Beauty blocks. The love was so intense that the fact that I had never successfully done any paper piecing didn't even phase me. I had been bitten by the quilt bug. Next step: load up on more brights and small black and white prints.

It was a labor of love - and some of the blocks were completed with the help of my block swap friends. I couldn't help but add the paper pieced flying geese border. All of the little prints make it feel almost like an I spy quilt - which is pretty cool in my book.

Now, like many a project before it, this little quilt will be stacked on the to-be-quilted pile. Are you tempted to start work on some New York Beauties of your own? Stay tuned - I have a giveaway coming up in the next post!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

extrinsic motivation...

I'll admit it; gold stars were an important part of elementary school. Generally I am a pretty self motivated person - doing things because they are right or should be done, but occasionally I am encouraged by the promise of extras. John posted on the Blog-A-Palooza page that there are midpoint giveaways in the works. The fine print: all of our blocks, #1-#8 must be posted in the flickr pool. Now I have been doing pretty well keeping up with this quilt along [my block 8 was finished on Saturday] - but what I don't do well is take pictures, edit said pictures, upload, and blog about my projects in a timely manner. The promise of possible free loot is what made this post happen. Above is block #7. I like to think of it as a personal gift that Heather gave to me. Boy did I need a little break from flying geese and tiny squares! The block looks great and is easy to put together [there was a moment of pure bliss when I realized the relatively low number of seams I had to deal with when sewing rows together :]

Block #8 required the use of some applique muscles. No needle-turn here, thank you. Simple Heat and Bond Lite did the trick and I machine stitched around the shapes. Angela's basket is a little different. It isn't at all that I am super creative [especially since I borrowed this arrangement from someone else!] - my choice to change the layout was because I couldn't seem to fit all those triangles in a pleasing manner.

So there you have it... Block #9 will soon be awaiting my attention already :)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

i'm a joiner [blog-a-palooza update]...

As I shared with everyone a few posts ago - I got the bug and am swimming right along in the fast current of online swaps and quilt alongs! Here are the latest blocks I created for the Bloggers' Block-A-Palooza quilt along. I am doing fairly well keeping up with the blocks [just not so well with sharing them online!] Above is block #3 designed by Amanda over at Sasikirana Handmade. I love the incidental bear paw pattern that forms in the corners! It is like a tricky little optical illusion :)

Block #4 is the brain child of Cherri. The simple look of this block is really nice - love how it highlights the pinwheel fabric.

Moving right along is block #5 by Kaye. Did I mention they like flying geese in this quilt along?

And the flying geese just keep on flocking in with block #6 by Monica. Click on over just to see how fab her tutorial looks - amazing what a talented artist can do with Adobe Illustrator!

The sun may be out and about today - making it a record breaking TWO DAYS in a row! It never ceases to amaze me who exciting a 40 degree day can be as we approach spring.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

animal house...

There are a few creatures that I have been working on. The first is a model for work, showing off some of the new Max and Whiskers by Basic Grey for Moda. I was inspired by the scotties Denyse Schmidt posted. Since I was using a charm pack, I used 2 1/2" squares and a 2 1/2" strip. I think he turned out well. For a brief stint I was obsessed with organza flowers. I made 4 of them for headbands, pins, and barrettes - they really jazz up an outfit. My singed fingers need a break though [to finish the edges, I melted them with a lighter].

I will leave you with a sneak peak of a little mousie project that I am working on for a friend's wedding. Can't wait to show them to you all finished!

Friday, February 4, 2011

summer dreamin' with tula...

I can tell it's February... the longer winter lasts, the colder it gets, the more snow and ice that pile up, the more I dream about the sun, the ocean, the beach... With that in mind I want to share my latest fabric purchase. A lucky find of some Tula Pink Full Moon Forest!!

I can't get enough of those jumping fishies and the gorgeous bright [sunny] colors! I am just dreaming and doodling what they could become.

Do you need a little sunshine too? I put some fat quarters in my etsy shop :)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

boots made for walking...

We are still in full on winter mode here in Ohio. The last few days we have been dealing with ice, lots of ice. Sophie is not a fan of this weather - poor thing, her back legs slip out from under her on the sidewalk and she falls through the ice when she tries walking on the snow piles.

Snow, ice, and the salt used to melt said snow and ice, are bad for little puppy toes. Armed with fleece, non-skid fabric, and some elastic I put together some simple boots to soothe Sophie's frozen feet. I loosely followed the general pattern found here.

She was a little skeptical of her new footware for the first couple of days - the shoes underwent some chewing and attempts were made to lose them on our walks. Now she has settled in quite nicely, and it is great to have dry feet when we come back in [less footprints on our sofa and bed!]

This is day three with no school. I have a love/hate relationship with being snowed in. It is nice to not be able to go anywhere, but since I can do alot of work from home it just means extra hours in front of the computer. Plus I am going a little stir crazy and running dangerously low on white thread [again!] Hopefully the winter blues will pass soon... can't wait for the sun to return!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

new year, new swaps, new blocks...

Blame it on the crazy number of snow days so far this year, or missing my online family, or the need to experiment and try out new blocks... Whatever the reason I am ready to get back into the quilt along and swap scene over on flickr and around the blogosphere. The block swap group I was in last year came to an end in December, so I was quick to find a new swap for 2011. The Nittany Block Party [and Heidi] welcomed me with open arms. Heidi took on January and sent us some beautiful Bliss fabric and Modify Tradition Magic Cross tutorial. I enjoyed this tutorial - fairly simple and great step by step instructions.

I am also excited that the Scrappy Pincushion Swap is entering round 3! I put together this mosaic to give my partner some inspiration. Can you sense that while my feet are in snowy Ohio my head is definitely at the beach?? Summer can't come soon enough!

Moving on to my current quilt along... I jumped on board with Quilt Dad's Bloggers' Block-A-Palooza - a 17 stop tour of some very talented bloggers. Each of the block tutorials will be completed using Sweetwater's new line Sunkissed. I, on the other hand, NEED to do some stashbusting [really, I prefer to collect and drool over fabric than actually use my beauties]. Nonetheless, I did it, I cut into my Amy Butler Lotus stash. So far I am not regretting it. The last stop on the tour is the actual quilt layout - I am thinking that I might want to set this one on point though. I think it would be fab to alternate the finished blocks with solid blocks of the tree peony fabric.

John put his creativity to work coming up with block #1. He calls it Flying Over Fields. I chose to put my flying geese together a little differently so you get a star-like design.

Then over to the amazing Oh, Fransson blog for Elizabeth's amazing block Word Play. True to form, she had us cutting [& re-cutting] lots of little squares for this patchwork. It definitely has an interesting look.

How 'bout you? Any exciting new swaps you are joining in this year?