December ufo wrapup

I did finish my December ufo in September: Paul’s quilt.

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I am very pleased with it and showed it at my work.

I succeeding in finishing more than half my ufo projects: seven out of twelve!  Judy is changing her ufo challenge, so I will also be changing the way I do my thing.  Next week I will write a goal list for 2012.  I plan to start some new things and finish some old things.

Happy New Year!

 

Published in: on December 29, 2012 at 8:16 am  Comments (2)  
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Paul’s quilt – Blogger’s Quilt Festival

I am entering Paul’s quilt in a competition: Blogger’s Quilt Festival.  If you would enjoy seeing some real show stopping quilts, head over there and scroll past the prizes.

Amy's Creative Side

The Quilt Stats:

  • Quilt Measurements : 84×84
  • Special Techniques used, if any: improvisational piecing
  • Quilted by… Roberta Brooks
  • Best category: Scrap quilt, bed quilt

Now for a brief history of Paul’s quilt:

Paul is my younger son.  I had already made my older son a quilt for his bed, and I wanted to make one for Paul.  I asked him for input and he mainly had two stipulations: red and black.  He has been going through a black period with his clothes the past few years (not goth, more jazz musician style). Many of the t-shirt panels and much of the grey and black denim are his own outgrown clothes.

It is fun to work for me to work on a “sampler” quilt since I can use so many different ideas and improvise all the way to the end.  I tried to incorporate a lot of different elements that all related back to Paul.  He has only really worn black jeans for the past few years, so those crazy denim blocks were my first ideas.  For a time I thought I might have two or three quilts: one denim, one t-shirt and one pieced blocks, but the color palette was enough to unite the different blocks.

I also love the quilting motif I used – circles with straight lines.  As usual, I did a combination of hand quilting and machine quilt.  I did machine quilt in the ditch on the horizontal lines between rows for extra stability.  I used several different sized plates as templates and then used a white pencil to draw the circles on for a guide for my hand quilting.  I love the landscape effect that evolves from these shapes.  I decided to leave my knots exposed ala Alabama Studio Sewing.  It is difficult to see, but I used embroidery floss, in red, black and grey as well as  metallic thread to create the hand stitching.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t photograph well, but there are multiple sizes of wales of corduroy in the black jean blocks.  It adds a lot of texture. In the upper center, the ripped area is a pocket that I pulled up partially.  I really love dimensional sections like this.

In the upper right corner is a block I call the Christmas cow, a partially completed block that I had from my grandmother.  I try to add a little fabric from the materials I was given when she passed to all my quilts.  The black pin polka dot fabric in the frame is from my Aunt Lou.  I love to add these layers of meaning to my quilts.  It evokes the generational history we all have from the fiber arts.

I love the way the back turned out.  The bottom is musical instruments, then black on black music notes, then dragons, then lobsters on newspaper, finally music on white.  All in all, I think it is one of my best quilts and I am really glad that Paul ended up with it.

Paul’s quilt wrapup

We had  a great weekend camping but I’m running a little late.  Here is the wrap up of Paul’s quilt. Now, I don’t generally like working with a client, even when he is my own son.  However, he pretty much had two stipulations: red and black.  Many of the t-shirt panels are his own clothes.

It is fun to work with these “sampler” quilts.  I tried to incorporate a lot of different elements that all related back to Paul.  He has only really worn black jeans for the past few years, so those crazy denim blocks were my first ideas.  For a time I thought I might have two quilts, but the color palette was enough to unite them.

I also love the quilting motif I used – circles with straight lines.  I did machine quilt in the ditch on the horizontal lines between rows for extra stability, but I did quite a bit of hand quilting.  I used several different sized plates as templates and then used a white pencil to draw the circles on.  I love the landscape effect that evolves from these shapes.

I also like the black corduroy. Unfortunately, it doesn’t photograph well, but there are multiple sizes of wales of corduroy in the black jean blocks.  In the upper center, the ripped area is a pocket that I pulled up partially.  I really love dimensional sections like this.

Again here is the Christmas cow, a partially completed block that I have from my grandmother.

I love the way the back turned out.  The bottom is musical instruments, then black on black music notes, then dragons, then lobsters on newspaper, finally music on white.  All in all, I think it is one of my best quilts and I am really glad that Paul ended up with it.

Published in: on September 17, 2012 at 6:55 am  Leave a Comment  
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he likes it

Yes, he likes it!  He spent the whole evening wrapped up in it! Sorry about the picture, but I snapped it in the middle of present opening, so he wanted to move on.

slowly slowly the ant crawls over the quilt

I was thinking yesterday about one of Steve’s college professors who said that as a painter he tries to paint like an ant crawling on the surface.  Such is quilting.  I did get five more squares quilted.  It took me three hours.  Not that this was unpleasant, I spent most my time on the phone with my mom.  My mom has the awesome super power of always being awake when I am awake.  She must have learned it when I was a baby.  Anyway, if I wake up at 5:30 am in the morning and can’t get back to sleep, I can call my mom.  After I got off the phone,  I thought to myself, it took me 3 hours to quilt five squares, the quilt has 36 squares, (insert math here) : 21 hours for just the hand quilting part of the quilt.  Obviously, this is only a small part of how much I have worked on this quilt.  Now, making quilts is a great joy for me, so I obviously am not in it for the money or the fame. This is why I don’t sell my quilts, I could never make enough money to compensate me for my time and really make them the way I want them to be.

Anyway, I am also making progress on my stockings.

One done!  Yes, it is mine.  I have learned to do mine first because if I usually make them better as I go. Anyway, I made a monograms, edged the monogram with fur and paint.  Then I attached it with a button.  I added lace around the cuff and (hard to see) little gold beads at each quilted seam.  They are turning out great. I’m having a hard time motivating myself because I have three projects that all need the same thing right now: hand work.  For that reason, I will be glad when these are done.  However, these stockings at least have the added bonus of being portable. However, I only have eight days to complete them.

On another more delicious note: for those of you who live in Minneapolis-St Paul, the Minneapolis Farmers’ Market is open! It technically doesn’t close but in the winter, there is only meat, eggs, and seafood and they only come every other week.  Now, they are open every Saturday, and there is more variety. Don from Heinel Farm  was there with spinach and green onions.  There were already some bedding plants, chocolate and, also, Joe of Caribbean Heat.  Anyway, the big surprise was morels!  Paul and I had picked another five on the parkway.  We were really excited to get a quarter pound at the Farmer’s Market, only slightly overpriced.  We had a delicious dinner last night of morels and pasta.

progress

I got a lot done this weekend so I have a lot to show you! I am making good progress on my Christmas stockings. I have the monograms done and ready to sew to the stockings.  I am on track to finish my first ufo for 2012!

On Friday night, after much complaining and irritation, and after I had every single person in my family try to put them together, I finally decided to put these together in flowers.  In my mind, I would put these together in rows like I would squares.  For anyone doing one of these quilts, which I definitely would not recommend at this point, you have to put them together in flowers.  What I will do next with them is still unknown.  But I did get one done already!

Lastly, I am most excited about Paul’s quilt.

I am now working on the hand quilting, which besides the binding, is the last part of this quilt!  I am so excited!  I am also very excited about the way it is turning out.  As usual my hand quilting creates a landscape that interacts with the surface but also floats above it.  By the way, I plan to leave my knots showing on this quilt, since I just read Alabama Studio Sewing + Design: A Guide to Hand-Sewing an Alabama Chanin Wardrobe.  I am still on the fence, but since my some of my hand quilting knots that I popped through the top of the quilt on some of my other quilts didn’t stay, and this quilt will get heavy use from a teenage boy, I’m going to try her idea of leaving the knots exposed as a design element.

Easter vigil

So like the women at the tomb, I am having a day of waiting, which always puts me at loose ends.  We always participate in a big Easter breakfast our church, so I am waiting and praying a little that it will all go off without a hitch ( and without too much of my personal craziness coming out at the seams).  I’ve done all that I can do.

I have several project at near finish including Paul’s quilt and Steve’s shorts but I don’t really have the presence of mind to finish them, so I am on a tangent today, just waiting out the day.  It’s raining, but besides that my bike is in the shop.

There, all my complaining out in the clear blue air.  As usual, I only have minor inconveniences to complain about. So, because I am a Christian, I will the say the one thing that is the beginning and the end, the irrefutable:

He is risen!

Happy Easter!

Published in: on April 8, 2012 at 5:36 am  Comments (2)  
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finished apron skirt

Yes! I made this yesterday.  I was particullarly proud because I have been very sick all week with a head cold.  But yesterday, I just barely well enough to make this.  Patti had given me a gift card to the fabric store for Christmas this year and this was one of the fabrics I bought.  I am excited to wear it to church today.

Steve and I also went to the fabric store and bought the fabric for the back of Paul’s quilt.  I especially love the lobster fabric.

These were two fabrics we picked up in the clearance area to make shorts for Steve.  By the way, never go the fabric store with your husband when you are sick.  You will buy three times your budget (even with all of your coupons) and volunteer to make shorts.  This is actually not everything we bought. I shouldn’t complain.  He was willing to drive me there when I was sick and walk around for an hour and even sort through the fabrics I picked out for Paul.  He even knows if there is more than one roll of fabric to pick the one with the least yardage so I can get the end piece at half off. I’m also secretly a little excited to make the shorts.

January ufo wrap up

Here is what I have of the ducky quilt, my January.  I also have many more cut including some different flowers: tulips, pansies and roses.  I also have the actual ducks ready to be appliqued.  This isn’t a finish, that wasn’t my goal since this quilt is so new. Judy said to set reasonable goals, so my goal was only significant progress. If Judy would have drawn it later in the year, it may have happened and still probably will in 2012- but probably the fall.

Paul’s quilt on the other hand is nearly done.  It would be awesome if Judy drew it for next month because all it needs is the border for the top to be done.  I will continue on it anyway because I’m on track.

By the way, I just posted a new book review on my other blog: Shadows in Flight by Orson Scott Card.

Paul’s quilt

I finished all the blocks for Paul’s quilt.  I’m really pleased how it turned out.  It’s very teenager-like and just like Paul. He has mostly worn black with a little red for the last year or two so, of course, when I asked him what colors his quilt should be, he said black and red.  It has several of his t-shirts.  It is really a very interesting combination of fabrics: jersey knit, rayon, cotton quilting fabric and, of course, my old stand-by denim.  To me, it is too diverse, perhaps structurally unstable.  It’s funny, my husband loves and said it is one of my best, most cohesive quilts.