Sunday, May 30, 2010

Peekaboo Blush

Saturday morning, I finished piecing the quilt top that I started at our family quilting bee last Saturday, Peekaboo Blush (which is what I'm calling this quilt with a square in square design using a Blush layer cake). I had finished all the blocks last Sunday, pieced them into rows on Tuesday, then pieced the rows together and added a two-inch border Saturday morning.

To make the blocks, I separated the layer cake into high-patterned and low-patterned prints. Then I cut the layer cake squares so that the border or outer square of each block would be the same fabric. Halfway through, I thought it would add a bit more visual interest if I used four different fabrics for the outer square on the rest of the blocks.

One of the solid outer squares.

A high-patterned, scrappy outer square.

A low-patterned, scrappy outer square.

When I pieced the top, I tried to alternate between solid outer squares and scrappy outer squares, but it didn't turn out that way. I thought I had the same number of each type, but I had some spots where I had to put the same type of block next to each other. Oh well, I think it turned out just fine.

For the back, I originally planned on just using the fabrics below, but then opted to add some red. Cutting the correct sizes for this was a challenge this time around; for some reason I kept miscalculating and had to add more to the ends here and there. This back is definitely more "pieced" than it should have been.

My mom recently got new floors put in her kitchen/dining room so I headed over there yesterday to take advantage of a non-carpet place to baste this quilt (I usually baste on my living room floor). Oh man! What a difference it makes to have a hard floor surface for basting. My sister helped me and I think we got this whipped out, ready to quilt in about 30 minutes.

As of now, it's ready for quilting. I hope to get to it this week. I'm doing free-motion again to see if I can get more practice. Plus, free-motion seems to go a lot faster than straight line.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Finally Finished: Life Is What You Make It

Sunday was a great day! I got so much sewing done. At my family quilt bee on Saturday (more on that when I get the pictures from my sister - I forgot my camera!), I didn't do a ton of sewing on my own projects as I was busy helping others or letting others use my machine. So on Sunday I wanted to make up some of that time. I finally finished my Life Is What You Make It quilt. And just in time for Amy's Blogger's Quilt Festival, and I'll have something to contribute to Amylouwho's sew & tell this week too!

This quilt measures about 67 by 84 inches. I opted to use a wavy stitch in parallel lines about an inch and a half apart for the quilting. I really like how it turned out. I'm learning though that the "quilting" part of quilting is not my favorite because of how time-consuming and awkward it can be. I love the look of it and feel that the scrunchy look is what makes a quilt a quilt, so I guess I just need to keep practicing and hope that I improve my technique over time.

And here's the back.

I did the binding a little bit differently this time. I made it 2 1/4 inches wide instead of 2 1/2. I definitely liked the smaller binding, but it was a beast when I got to the corners. Two of them I had to stitch by hand because the bulk wouldn't fit under the foot. I also found it helpful to make the binding ahead of time - not at the beginning of the process, but after the quilting was done. In the past I've pieced the binding, pressed it, and added it to the quilt all in one night. But this time I made the binding the day before and then wound it up. Then, the next day, all I had to do was pull out the roll and get to work binding the quilt. I think I'll do it this way from now on.

I really love how this quilt turned out. I was starting to get sick of looking at this fabric for so long and on a few separate projects. But, now that this quilt is finished and put to use (first time snuggle on the couch with the mister last night while we watched the LOST series finale), I love it as much as I did when I first saw it. Thanks Missouri Quilt Co. for the quilt idea.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Quilt Story

I'm being featured today on Quilt Story. If you have a minute, head on over and check it out. Heather and Megan saw my Make Life baby quilt and thought it would be fun to hear the story behind it. After all, every quilt has some sort of story, right? They created Quilt Story and will feature a new quilt mostly every day.


Monday, May 24, 2010

The Process Pledge

Sometime last week while I was perusing the World Wide Web, I came upon R0ssie's blog and read about her Process Pledge. I decided this would be a great way for me to document my quilting processes.

Basically, the pledge deals with talking more about how you go about making your quilts (choosing fabrics, design inspiration, decisions made along the way, etc.) rather than just showing off a finished quilt and doing a little write-up about it. I especially wanted to do this so I can learn more about photography and get in lots of practice by taking pictures of each quilt-making step. The mister is an amazing photographer, so I make the excuse that I don't need to be. But, there's nothing attractive about a quilt when the picture of it was taken by a novice. The challenge for me lies in the time of day I do my sewing. With two kiddos underfoot, I don't quilt until they're in bed, which means less natural light. I'm still brainstorming how I can overcome this so I can capture more in-process shots, but I'll be sure to discuss all these challenges and the solutions I come up with along the way.

I've started two new quilts while finally finishing my Life Is What You Make It quilt. It's in the dryer as we speak. Over the next couple of days, I plan to talk about the finished quilt, our family quilting bee day, as well as some process posts about the two new quilts I'm starting.

And, here's just a cute picture for you. My little three-year old makes a great baby quilt model, don't you think?

Friday, May 21, 2010

This week's sewing review

I had so much fun with the giveaway this week, but reading all those comments and entering in giveaways myself really took it out of me. And I've got some sort of cold to boot! Needless to say, I didn't get much sewing done this week.

I managed to make a nametag for our quilt guild meeting last night that I was actually rushing to get done Wednesday night. I needn't have stressed though because I was the only one who remembered the assignment for the month.

I used some Make Life scraps and opted to hand stitch my name. I'm not really pleased with the way it turned out and will probably redo it for next month. There wasn't enough contrast between the black thread and the blue fabric. I ended up writing my name on the back with a Sharpie just so my name would at least be visible somewhere.

The rest of my sewing time this week was used on verifying my instructions and diagrams for making a square in square block. My sisters, nieces, and a cousin are getting together tomorrow so I can teach them how to make a quilt. I thought it would be a piece of cake because I'm a technical writer by profession, but it was a little tricky to make sure I had all my measurements right and included every step (even the little things you don't think about when you're a step above beginner).

I'll make sure to post about our family quilting bee day. But for now, I'm off to get rid of these annoying highlights I got done a few months back. Wish me luck that my hair will return to its natural dark brown color...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

May Giveaway Day Winners

I'm too excited to wait till tomorrow to post the winners of my giveaway. Thanks to all 516 of you who entered! I've contacted the three winners so check your email if you're listed below. Anyway, without further ado, here are the three winners.

The winner of the Verna charm pack is flygirl 07.
flygirl07 said...
love the fabrics!

The winner of the Jessica Jones yardage is Kristen.
Kristen said...
Wonderful fabric choices!!

The winner of the Hip Holidays fat quarter pack is Jessica.
Jessica said...
Wow, what an amazing giveaway. The fabric is all lovely! Thanks for the opportunity!
Congratulations to the winners! I'm glad I was able to participate in May Giveaway Day this time around. Thanks for stopping by to say hi, and come back often!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

May Giveaway Day Is Here! Wanna Win?

**Giveaway closed**

Hi all! Welcome to Pitter Putter Stitch. If you're new here, I hope you'll come back often. If you've been here before, welcome back! As part of Sew, Mama, Sew!'s May Giveaway Day, I'm giving away three prizes to three lucky readers.

First is a Verna charm pack.

Next are two cuts of Jessica Jones yardage in Green and Blue Stacks and Blue Leaflet. Each cut measures about 16 by 54 inches - perfect for making your own Buttercup bag, like I did, from Made by Rae.

And last is a fat quarter pack of Hip Holidays by Barbara Jones of Quilt Soup for Henry Glass and Co.

I met Barbara at HMQS and she's great (and local)! You can use this fabric to make her Hip Holidays quilt using her free pattern. I saw her quilt in person and absolutely fell in love! Note to self: Must make this quilt for Christmas.

So, wanna win one of these goodies? You have three chances to win.

First, simply leave a comment.

Second, become a follower and then leave a comment letting me know that you're a follower.

Third, grab my button (top left sidebar) and leave a comment letting me know you did so. Include your blog address so I can check it out and meet new blogger friends.

(Make sure I can contact you through your profile.)

I changed the closing time for this giveaway (from midnight to 10pm - I don't want to stay up any later).

This giveaway will be open until May 20 at 10pm MST. I'll announce the winners Friday, May 21. Unfortunately, I won't be able to ship internationally this time.

Good luck! And make sure to check out the other giveaways over at Sew, Mama, Sew!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Quilting finally done

I spent the evening last night finishing the quilting on my Life Is What You Make It quilt. I know what you're thinking, She isn't done with that quilt yet? Sheesh, she must be a slow poke! And you'd be right. I started this quilt a couple months ago. My quilting time is limited and although I had a few evenings I could have spent sewing/quilting this week, I just wasn't feeling in the mood. It's funny how I can go days without sewing while other times I feel like there aren't enough days in the week. I have to say though that I'm starting to get sick of looking at Make Life. I'm ready to start using new colors and patterns. I bought some more fabric to make another Make Life baby quilt for my cousin, but since it's a gift for her baby and she isn't pregnant yet, I can put that off for a little bit and come back to it after I've had a break.

I'm trying to decide if I want to turn all those strips into the binding (so as not to waste any fabric - I hate wasting pretty much anything), or if I should just give in and buy some more fabric that won't take as much time. The mister thinks I should just get over it and throw those strips away, but I'm not sure I can do it.

In other news, another cousin asked me to teach her how to make a quilt, so we're having a family quilting day. She picked out the design she wants and I wrote up the instructions and drew up the diagrams of the blocks. Our big quilting day is in a week and a half. I'll post the instructions and diagrams here after that.

Don't forget to tune in this Monday (May 17) for a chance to win some great prizes.

Oh, and thanks for voting for my ugly quilt. I took second place!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

May Giveaway Day

The amazing folks over at Sew, Mama, Sew! are hosting the May Giveaway Day on their blog again this year. I didn't participate last year, but I want to this year. I went to HMQS this last weekend and picked up a few goodies for some soon-to-be lucky winners. That's right, I'm doing more than one giveaway. So, click here or the May Giveaway Day button on the left sidebar to read more about May Giveaway Day. Then, come back here Monday, May 17th for my giveaway! Till then!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Sew & Tell: Make Life Baby Quilt Is Finished!!!

Holy smokes, a quilt started and finished in eight days! Granted, it was a very small quilt, but I am so impressed with myself for finishing something in a relatively short time frame. You have no idea. That never happens.

The binding for this baby was nearly the death of me. I must have just been missing my sewing mojo this week because I struggled with the binding and then with piecing block 5 in the jelly roll quilt-along.

Here are a few shots of the finished binding, pre-wash.

Those mitered corners are a little less than stellar.

After the quilt came out of the dryer. It's amazing how much washing really does hide so many of my free-motion mistakes.

Despite a request to gift this quilt (sorry Megan, but I will make you one just like it when you have a baby), I'll be keeping this for baby #3 (that's not an announcement...just thinking ahead). I like how it turned out way too much to part with it. Maybe once I have more finished quilts under my belt I'll be able to make quilts and then give them away. Someday...someday.

If you're interested in participating in Sew & Tell Fridays too, visit Amylouwho's blog and link up your projects with the rest of ours.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Block #5

For some reason, I really struggled with this block for the Jelly Roll Sampler Quilt Along. I like the color combination, but I had to unpick a few pieces several times. Ah well, chalk that up to gaining experience.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Oakley's rag quilt and Make Life baby quilt update

A friend of mine had her second baby yesterday, a little girl named Oakley Jo (isn't that cute?). I had some flannel left over from my daughter's rag quilt so I brought it out last night, cut it up, and made a rag quilt for Oakley.

I didn't have enough full size pieces so the back is made up of some rectangles instead of just squares.

Once I finished the rag quilt, I finished practicing free motion quilting on my Make Life baby quilt.

Although it looks a little scary in some places, I'm pleased with the overall result.

Especially because it's starting to have that scrunchy look that I love.

Tonight I plan to piece the binding, which will be the green dots and white paisley. Then I will finish quilting my Life Is What You Make It quilt and get to work on piecing the binding out of these babies...Yeah, I know. I'm a glutton for punishment, but I can't bear to waste any of this fabric.

I'm sure I won't get to it tonight, but another friend sent me this fabric from Portland to make her a bag, but not a Buttercup bag. She serves as the Relief Society President in her area and needs a BIG bag to carry all her Church stuff around. I'm excited to try my hand at a different style. Cross your fingers that it'll work out.


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