Archive of ‘Creative Process’ category

Sewcial Bee Sampler Sew-Along

I’ve been following Maureen Cracknell on Facebook and am interested in her Sew-Along program.  It’s going to be difficult to keep up with a new block every week for 25 weeks, but I’d like to try to do a few of them.  Her fabric choices are often modern and colors that I don’t usually use but are appealing when all put together.  I’m sure I want to use fabric from my stash, but not sure yet which ones.  Tonight is the first block reveal, so let’s see how it looks.  Feel free to follow along with me!

sewalong-block

Challenge Quilt for 2016

The challenge quilt for our guild this year is to create a small quilt using at least one 9 patch design and based on page 9 of a book.  I wanted to use scraps from previous baby quilts and choose a book from our nursery.  Turns out, I already had squares in my stash that look great together and remind me of the play mat baby loves, with it’s bright colors and patterns.  Then, page 9 of Sylvester and the Magic Pebble references a red pebble and I noticed that there are red dots in some of the fabrics.  Perfect!

New Hobby Room

This fall, we moved into a new home, and it’s been so exciting to unpack all my craft/sewing supplies into a new space.  There’s cabinets for candles, finished quilts, areas to hang design boards, and baskets of in-progress projects.  Half of the master walk-in closet is full already of fabric, ready for future projects.

This display includes a small sewing machine that my mom gave me from Grandma’s house.  The needle moves up and down but would need a new bobbin and repairs to be actually used.  It’s nice to have a place to show some of my sewing related trinkets.

displayThis display includes two of my first quilt projects. My mom tells a story that when I was three, we lived in Eugene and she sewed little girl clothes for me and for resale in a local shop.  While she worked on them, she gave me scraps to play with and eventually to learn to sew myself.  She kept one of the first pieces (on the left) and framed it for me to hang in my sewing room.  I found the other piece (on the right) and it too deserves a place on the wall.  The basket holds some other in progress ideas/fabric for projects to make for baby.

in progress

Preparation for Baby

We’re so excited to announce that Baby Boy is due in April!

Only two months away now and my sewing room is full of ideas and fabrics ready to make into something great for him.  People also have been generous with handmade gifts!

My Aunt sent me this quilt that was in my Grandma’s linen collection.  We’re not sure of it’s age, maker, or recipient, but it’s a great reminder of the heritage of quilts and will be displayed in our nursery.

(pictures coming soon)

One of the fun projects was at my baby shower.  I prepared fabric, pens, and onesies so guests could decorate an outfit for Baby Boy.  They were so creative and the final products are super cute!

(pictures coming soon)

I also have been making some items for friends with babies.  Swaddle blankets, pacifier holders, and burp cloths are fun to personalize and quick easy projects to sew.

zach

Bonnet Babes and Cowboys

We’re going to participate in the Oregon Trail 5K in Oregon City next weekend, so I’m making bonnets for the girls to wear and bandannas for the boys.  Found some fabric in my stash purchased in Amish country and also picked out some free fabric tonight at the quilt guild meeting that will work perfectly.

bonnet fabrics

 

Pinterest offers a bunch of ideas of patterns.  I’ve decided to use this one from the Waag Blaag that uses less fabric than some of the other patterns and offers helpful photos of the process.

First two complete!

Summer Shop Hops

Summer is a fun time to do the Sunshine and Stitches Shop Hop as well as collect patterns and license plates from shops participating in the Row By Row Experience.  The SS is an Oregon two week long event and the RR lasts all summer and includes shops across the United States.

The Sunshine promoters asked us to take selfie pictures in front of their shop signs to promote the event.  It was a fun way to see who else was participating and log which shops we visit. I’m looking forward to a road trip with my friend Ruth and visiting some shops with my mom this week!

The road trip turned out to be just me, but I still really enjoyed touring 8 shops in one day!  I listened to an autobiography of Oliver Sachs thanks to a free audiobook at the library.  The scenery, especially on the way there, was so beautiful! Per tradition, I stopped for “fuel” along the way!

The first four shops were Boersma’s in McMinnville, Grandma’s Attic in Dallas (my favorite shop of the tour), Greenbaums in Salem, and The Cotton Patch in Keizer.  Second four shops were Bernina Stretch and Sew in Keizer, Sewn Loverly in Wilsonville, A Common Thread in Tigard, and Tea Time Calicos in Tigard.  The shop hop asked people to take selfies to post on their facebook page, so I tried to find something unique to do at each shop.

Each shop really does have their own collection of fabrics, personality in decorations, level of hospitality, and sample quilts that make it unique.  Since there were not many people in the shops, I tried to make conversation with the employees and enjoy each shop even if I didn’t buy anything beyond collecting the free patterns.

At the end of the day, I had collected some cool patterns, new projects, and lots of creative ideas!

lootI just found out that I won a gift certificate from Bernina Stretch and Sew in Keizer!  Looking forward to going there to find some treasures for new projects.

 

 

Graduation Quilts

front

This year, I made two quilts for high school graduates.  Lauren, a long time family friend, is going from Glencoe HS to Oregon State.  Katie, our oldest niece, is going from North Medford HS to Southern Oregon.  Both girls have played soccer in high school and are really great people.  They do have different personalities though, which I wanted to reflect in the different quilts.

For Lauren, I chose to use a package of coordinating fat quarter pieces that I bought on Craftsy.  The modern, fresh colors reminded me of her, even though they’re not her favorite color (purple).

After seeing the patterns from Sam Hunter at a quilt guild, I bought the “faster fourteen” one and put together the 14 fat quarters that I thought would look best. Here’s Sam’s version that she uses on the pattern’s cover.

Sharon at Sharon’s Quilt Attic quilted it for me.  She used a new long arm machine that is connected to a computer and we chose a design that reminded me of waves.  It was mesmerizing to watch the quilting happen automatically, evenly paced and quickly completed. She recommended a bright color thread so it’s “less boring” and I do love how the orange pops and draws out the Oregon State colors for Lauren.

I finished sewing on the binding and mom finished the hand sewing to close the binding and finish the quilt. This top went together in just one day and I love the look of the final product, even though the fabric turned out to be a little busy. It’s definitely a pattern I’ll use again!

For Katie, I chose batik fabrics.  For her 16th birthday party, Katie had used squares of blue and purple batik fabric from Joann’s for bandannas for the dueling teams of friends and family participating in her birthday “Olympics”.  I asked people to give me their bandannas with the hope of making something for Katie someday.  Then last summer, I won some free yardage at the Quilter’s Corner Store as part of the Row by Row Experience. Deb helped me pick out coordinating fabrics. I think it suits Katie’s mature, calm, friendly nature to have a colorful quilt that doesn’t look like the normal bright kid friendly colors I usually use, but rather something more for a young adult.

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The pattern is Vice Versa from Karla Alexander.  She is a talented quilt designer and teacher based in Salem, Oregon.  I decided that I want to use this pattern to make a graduation quilt for each of Aaron’s nieces & nephews, but change the fabric to fit their interests or favorite colors.  It’ll be fun to figure out what to do for the others next in line!

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AnnMarie from our guild quilted it for me.  I’ve always admired her work which is also often modern with unique color palettes and straight line quilting.  For this project, I asked for some leaf designs to mimic the leaves in the pattern and to remind Katie of her Oregon roots.

Here’s how both quilts looked the day the girls received them, and pics of the girls too!  So proud of their accomplishments and life path so far, and looking forward to seeing what next adventures are coming up for both of them.

April Sewing Saturday for Charity

Each month, the guild hosts a Sewing Saturday where we come together to work on projects.  Once a year, the projects are all to make charity quilts.  This year, we teamed up in pairs to complete a Scrabble Patch pattern with the help of designer Karla Alexander.  She gave each of us help with our Scrabble Patch and also a copy of any pattern we wanted for later.  I picked the tumbling blocks (seen below).

My teammate, Ruth, met up with me at Sharon’s Attic Quilt Shop to cut up our pieces (mostly from Ruth’s stash) ahead of time, so when we arrived that morning, we started right away designing our quilt.

Other people used sports fabric, Hawaiian, floral, and many other color palettes. I took some pictures in black and white to see the contrast and how it helped with designing.

At the end of the day, we had finished our top except for adding the borders, which Ruth did at home and then together we sandwiched the quilt (using spray adhesive) while enjoying the company of others in my Piece and Quiet group.  I used a straight line quilting pattern on it and Ruth completed the binding.  It looks great and is ready to donate to a community organization!

charity final

 

 

Wedding Quilt

I’m working on a quilt to celebrate our marriage this spring.  Usually when I work on quilts, I pretty much document them when they’re finished, but this time, I decided to write along the way about the process and progress.  Just like a relationship, there’s lots of learning done along the way, and it comes together slowly piece by piece until you see the big picture.

I found the pattern in a magazine awhile ago and picked out fabric in blues/greens/purples.  I was thinking it would be a quilt for us, but now that we’re engaged (and the colors of the wedding will be white/cobalt blue/silver-gray) then it fits perfectly.  I like how the block is seven strips together, like counting the days of a week.

(end of Jan 2015) One night was spent cutting apart all the colorful strips.  The next night I worked on it, the white squares and the first block came together.

blue pieces

(1/26/15) Tonight I put together a second blue themed block and created one using the green and purple fabrics.  To keep track of things, I decided to take a picture and refer to it when piecing everything together.  Can you tell that it didn’t get sewn together quite like the picture?  At least it still follows the pattern of long/short pieces and looks just great.  I guess it adds to the randomness of the design process.

I’m sure that at some point in this project, I’m going to sew something off from the pattern and also stitch in a white block upside down.  Both are relatively minor in the big scheme, but it’ll be noticeable to me.  Part of what makes quilts personal are the mistakes though, the human touch.

(April 2015)

The wedding took place with the finished quilt top on the unity table, and it was beautiful!  Aaron was surprised that was what I had in mind, and it added again to the personal touch of our wedding.  Here’s some more in process pictures and how it looked on the remembrance table at the wedding.

Jami and Mary from my quilt guild serged the edges of pieces of white/gray/silver fabric that I used for centerpieces and will end up being the back of the quilt.

centerpieces

UFO’s: unfinished projects

In the quilting community, UFO’s are “unfinished objects” or projects that are in varying degrees of needing to be completed.  The guild issues a challenge each fall to members to complete their UFO’s.  At the November 2014 meeting, we can pay $3 into the challenge to submit our list of projects, and at the August 2015 meeting, we’ll reveal the results.

Here’s my list with pictures:

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