Thursday, May 29, 2014

2014 Umbrella Prints Entry

Here is my entry for the 2014 Umbrella Prints Challenge.  I purchased a Soft Pack of scraps without any clear plan on what I would make.  All I knew is that I love Umbrella Prints fabric and wanted the chance to work with some, so what better reason to buy some and participate? 

Because I'm terrible at naming quilts this is simply called Tiny Heart.  This quilt measures 10.5" x 8" and is made up of teeny-tiny half-inch blocks.  I love the finished product! I was inspired by the deluge of pixelated heart quilts I'd seen recently popping up in the blogosphere recently and wanted to channel some of that into this quilt.  


My goal for this challenge was to create something that used all of the scraps in the pack with minimal additional fabrics.  So when the back arrived and realized the tiniest scrap in my pack measured 1" x 3", I said, "One inch squares it is then!" and got to work cutting.  I decided to try hand quilting with perle cotton again and am very happy with the results.  They came out much better than my first attempt.

Front Detail

The back is pieced using the rest of the larger scraps from the pack.  I had just enough to make it work!  


Here is the Tiny Heart quilt in it's new home with the rest of my mini's that I hang at my desk at work.  Thanks for visiting!

To vote for my quilt or any of the other entries in this years competition, visit the 2014 Umbrella Prints Trimmings Competition Pinterest page between June 1st and June 5th and leave a comment on/repin/like as many or as few as you like.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Umbrella Prints 2014 Challenge Update

So back at the end of March I told you about the Umbrella Prints 2014 Trimmings challenge.  You can read all about that blog post here.  Well in usual fashion I've left it to the last minute (entries are due by May 30th) and on Saturday night I pulled out my Soft Pack and got to work. I started with this fun and soft palette and decided that I wanted to try to use every single scrap of fabric I had.  That tiny mint heart scrap was my starting point.  It's only 1" wide.

And I ended up with this.  Those are teeny-tiny 1" blocks, 62 of them to be exact, on a background of Kona White.

I had to make some adjustments to my background blocks because I didn't account for seam allowances when I cut them all but that was no big deal.  I got to work sewing and was pleasantly surprised by how quickly it went.  I even had success lining up all the little seams!  Those little blocks finish to only a 1/2" square.  This is by far the smallest thing I've ever made.

I decided to try hand quilt again using some perle cotton in white that I picked up at Joanne's a few months ago.  Several tries/epic fails later I'm echo quilting the heart.  Now to get this baby finished in time for the May 30th deadline to submit!  I've got 48 hours.  No biggie.  Stay tuned for the big reveal of the finished product!

I'm linking up with this weeks WIP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Blogger’s Quilt Festival - Friendship Quilt

Its time for the 2014 Blogger's Quilt Festival, and though I'm a little terrified, I've decided to participate this year. Link ups are open until May 23rd (this Friday) and then voting is open from May 24th (Saturday) to May 29th (Thursday) with winners announced on May 30th and 31st.

If you follow my blog, you've seen these quilts before.  I was inspired to make them after being asked to make two larger versions for one of my hive mates in the We Bee Learning bee.  She asked for wonky pinwheel blocks (using this tutorial) in green and aqua with accents of grey and yellow.  I loved the colors and the look of them so much that I decided to make a mini version for myself.  When I got all the blocks done, I didn't like how big it all was and decided to split the blocks up into two matched mini quilts instead.

These quilts measure 20" x 12" and were made entirely using scraps from my scrap bucket, with the exception of the solid white background.  Since I was on a role, I decided to dive in and try my hand (pun intended) at hand quilting.  I picked up some aqua and lime pearl cottons and dove right in.  Granted it's not perfect but I couldn't be happier with the final products.  The hand quilting adds just the right amount of texture to them and really helps ground the otherwise free-spirited pattern.

The backs are pieced using larger pieces of fabric I had left over from the front of the quilt.  I love the little added interest it gives them.  The one on the right is bound in solid, light green of unknown origin, and the one on the left is bound in a citron/chartreuse print on white.  And my absolute favorite part is that these were the first quilts I got to sign with my married name.  

I called these quilts Friendship Quilt 1 and Friendship Quilt 2 because the matched set reminded me of the matching friendship bracelets we used to make and exchange with our best friends when I was in grade school.  One of these quilts went to live with my good friend Jenn and the other one resides on the wall above my sewing machine.  It serves as a little bit of eye candy inspiration for when I'm feeling uninspired.  I hope you enjoyed this trip down memory lane!  Be sure to check out all of the other entries for the 2014 Bloggers Quilt Festival.  You'll find these two in the mini quilt category.

You can read more about these quilts here, here and here.  Happy Quilting!!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Spring 4x5 Modern Quilt Bee

After months of waiting I was finally lucky enough to get a spot in the spring round of the 4x5 Modern Quilt Bee.  It's hosted on Flickr and happens quarterly so if you miss sign ups you have to wait 3 months to try again (which is exactly what happened to me).

I choose the classic Ohio Star block and tried to make it fun and modern with my fabric placements.  I've been steadily sewing away for the last few days and just managed to finish up my blocks on Sunday.  Here are the finished blocks:

This elephant print is one of the first fabrics I bought when I started quilting a few years ago.  I'm glad to be able to show it off in this block.
Block to keep

I love this tea bag background print.  It's called Tea Bags in Cream, part of the Cream and Sugar collection from Windham Fabrics.  The cream print isn't available any longer but they do have the same pattern printed on bright orange.
Block for Flickr user Karriofberries

I used some long horded little red and white birdies in this block.  I have no idea what project they are from or where/when I got them.
Block for Flickr user 1toefeather1

Found the perfect Kaffe Fassel fabric for this block (and to selfishly use in my pink/yellow quilt as well) called Lotus Leaf in Yellow.
Block for Flickr user Jennicakes

I adore the little sheep/sheep dog fabric in the middle of this quilt.  I've used it in several bee blocks but have yet to use it in anything for myself.  That will have to change soon.
Block for Flickr user Texasquiltinggal

The large scale background worked beautifully in this block.
Block for Flickr user Principiessa

And here are all of the blocks together.

I'm linking up with Stitch by Stich for anything goes mondays.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Year to Date Progress on the Sugar Block Club

It's a short one today folks.  As I promised on Monday, here is the picture of my year to date progress with the Sugar Block Club.  Aren't they fun?!  My favorite blocks so far are from January (top left corner), February (middle, top row), and May (top, right corner).

Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

WIP Wednesday - Playing Catch Up

As you may have read on Monday, I've been playing catch up over the last few weeks with my ongoing block of the month commitments.  (I use the term commitments loosely because, in reality, I can quit anytime and the only one I'm committed to is me).  Today I want to share my newly completed Aurifil Block of the Month blocks for March, April, and May.  

You can find the pattern for the March block, designed by Emily Herrick, here.  This was a fun and easy block to make.  I had fun choosing fabrics and eventually decided to fussy cut some hoarded Heather Ross bicycle fabric for the center square.  I'm in love with block; I absolutely love how it came out, especially the little bicycle in the middle.  I'm thinking a quilt made up of fussy cut bicycle blocks could be really fun!

March Block
Angela Yosten designed the block for April.  It's a modification of the traditional bear paw block.  I have to say that this isn't my favorite block.  I generally don't care for blocks that aren't centrally weighted however I am happy with how it came out.  It will definitely play nicely with the other blocks in this quilt.  Sorry for this crappy picture courtesy of my phone.

April Block
May's designer was Amy Smart from Diary of a Quilter.  You can find the pattern for her block here.  I had fun picking fabrics for this one too and ended up going with a peach/coral dominated palette for this block.  I'm happy with how it came out.  It's a little wonky because of the bias edge setting triangles but I'm thinking that will all smooth out once I have it in a quilt top. 

May Block
Here is how my blocks look all together:  

Year to Date - May, Aurifil Block of the Month
Aren't they fun?  I'm still very much loving this color palette and can't wait to see what's next!  Happy Quilting!  I'm linking up with this weeks WIP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced.

Monday, May 12, 2014

April and May Sugar Block Club

I have been so far behind on all of my block of the month projects recently.  I was two months behind for Sugar Block Club, three months behind in the Aurifil BOM and 4 months behind in Pat Sloan's Globetrotting BOM.  Luckily this weekend I was able to change some of that.  I'm now caught up with the rest of the Sugar Block Club gang and manged to get two of the three blocks for the Aurifil BOM done also (I'll share those later).

This is my version of the April block, called Presence.  It was fairly simple to construct and came together quickly.

In April, Amy challenged us to be more present in our daily lives.  In this day and age of technology it can be difficult to spend quality time together without the distraction of screens.  I was especially sensitive to this, having just upgraded to an iPhone in April.  Often I'd find myself spending more time with the people on my phone than I was with the people around me.  Now I try to put the phone away when I'm with someone so that they can have my full attention.

May's block was a unique paper-pieced star called Joy!  I had fun choosing directional fabric to carefully place in this block and I think the final result is pretty nice.

For the May Beyond the Block challenge, Amy challenged us to find the joy in every day.  Simply to live a positive life.  This is something I struggle with sometimes, having fought with depression for most of my life.  And for a long time I was very unhappy.  But one day I woke up and decided I didn't want to be sad any more and started down the long road of looking for joy in the everyday and overcoming the sadness that had gripped me for so long.  So I challenge you, can you find the joy in today?  Today, it was the sound of the birds outside my window this morning when I was getting ready for work.  It was the feel of the sun on my face.  It was the knowledge that I have a job that I enjoy and pays my bills.  What is your joy for today?

Unfortunately the picture of all 5 blocks together thus far is on my other camera so I don't have that to share with you yet.  I've also got a few other blocks to share with you later this week so stay tuned!  Happy Quilting!

I'm linking up with Stitch by Stich for anything goes mondays.