Monthly Archives: November 2012

HtbaS - Episode 106

This week I talk about two sew-ins, finishing the final Star Wars quilt, the massive Very Scrappy Christmas Quilt, the first Weekender Bag, and a myriad of other little projects. I give a mini tutorial on a composition notebook cover (full tutorial to come in later post). Thanks to everyone who’s given the podcast an iTunes review!

And here is Penny the cat on one of the Elvis tabletoppers I made:


A Very Scrappy Christmas Quilt: Revealed!

Remember those vague references to a gianormous quilt I finished but couldn’t share details of?

BAM! Of course the pictures I took are held hostage on my laptop, which is currently disassembled, but my mom sent me a picture of the quilt on their bed. Also, this is Cinder, helper cat extraordinaire; she got first dibs on sitting on it.

I made this quilt over the past year using Bonnie Hunter’s Jared Takes a Wife patterns.  The four patches in the blocks (there are 36 12″ blocks with alternating red and green centers) are made with 2″ squares, so those were my leaders and enders on lots of other quilts.  Each block has 53 (!!!) pieces in it, which is 1,908 little pieces. in the 36 blocks. Plus the sashing and the cornerstones and the 3″ checkerboard border I added to make it nice and BIG for their king sized bed.

That’s a lot of fricking pieces. And what’s funny is that I made that quilt because I had all those hunter greens and burgundies in my stash that didn’t mix with my modern fabrics and I wanted to use them up. Guess what I’m using for Easy Street? Same dang fabrics because I only used up a third of what I had in my stash. Sheesh.

But I knew that my parents would like a traditional quilt. And hey, if they didn’t like it, it’s a Christmas quilt and they only have to look at it once a year.

It was so big that I opted to have my friend Chris quilt it on her longarm for me.  Here’s a good shot of the checkerboard border.  She did a great job with swirling and adding in some holly leaves and berries, too.

I’m hopeful I can recover some of my pictures of the quilt to add to this post, and my mom just took these for me to post. The centers were constants, either the burgundy or the green Christmas fabrics.

I just couldn’t sit on this anymore! I’m really happy with how it turned out.

WIP Wednesday: Wrong Acronym

I had a killer, knock-down, drag-out migraine yesterday. Two of the special pills didn’t even make a dent (nothing like practically flushing $20 down the toilet, since they are $10 each).  I finally told my boss at 3pm that I just needed to go to bed to try to shake it.  The good news is that I woke up at 5pm and it was better. The bad news is that I woke up because Jett had sat on my nightstand, and then launched himself off of it to get to a ladybug on the wall, knocking my laptop off the nightstand onto the floor, cracking the display. Really, it’s more of a SHATTERING of the display since the only visible part is the recycle bin in the upper right corner, which is sort of amusin.

Bad news: My cat is an asshole.

Good news: He at least has a well developed sense of irony, and not that crappy Alanis Morrissette sense of irony.

(I’ve ordered a replacement display. It should be here later this week, and I can use the laptop if I hook it up to my external monitor in my home office).

Anyway, the result of the migraine and laptop debacle is that I feel like I lost a day, and it feels like What-The-Heck Wednesday.  So here’s what’s going on in my sewing room.

Assholes, the lot of them.
He helpers with his butt.

I’m working on a zipper pouch to go with the pink houndstooth Weekender bag I just finished since I had extra fabric. I’m also gathering the fabrics for the next version of that bag I’m making in the patchwork style.  The fabrics next to the green box Morelli is sitting in are the base fabrics for the bag.

And finally, I’m working on a small twister quilt for the top of the cedar chest in our bedroom using two different charm packs from Sweetwater. Reunion, and one from last year.

Pink Houndstooth Weekender - Finished!

My fingers are sore, and my voice is scratchy from all the cursing. But I’ve finally finished the first Weekender tote. This one is actually a commission for a Christmas present for a friend’s daughter.

The pink houndstooth is a canvas fabric from Hobby Lobby. The grey dandelion print came from  There are lots of other blog entries with tips for tackling this undertaking, so I’ve only got three extra tips to share.

  • I used 1/4″ Steam a Seam to fuse my piping.  It went quicker than sewing it, and left me the option to pull open the ends and cut out some bulks at the seams for the pockets when the time came.
  • Rather than do the piping the way the pattern calls for at the overlap on the bottom of the side pieces, at a friend’s suggestion I used this method for a neat join (instructions courtesy of Husqvarna Viking).
  • The bottom corners gave me the most problems when assembly time came.  I have the Clover red clips, which worked find for the straight sections, but I ended up hand basting the pieces together and then machine stitching them.

I’ve committed to do another bag for my mom, but I’m doing that one as a patchwork project, and expect the assembly to be a bit better without the Peltex in the sides.

Sunday Stash: The Big Push

A couple BIG finishes this week thanks to various sew-ins! Some projects I can’t quite reveal yet, but should be able to in the coming weeks.  These are the 6 blocks I’ve finished for the Quilting Gallery block drive for Hurricane Sandy.

I got a donation of some fabric for pet beds, and some of it can also be used for actual quilts for Project Linus, so that’s in the intake tally. I’ve got 6 more bags to fill up with trimmings to turn into pet beds eventually, and with 3 already filled and covered, it’s time to make a trip to donate them!

    • Used this Week: 39.25 yards
      • 20 yd for the scrappy quilt (pics after the recipient gets it)
      • 10 yd for Star Wars, Return of the Quilt
      • 1.25 yd for 6 Sandy blocks
      • 4 yd for the pink Weekender (pictures coming soon!)
      • 3 yd for pet beds to fill with scraps
      • 1 yd for Black Friday FQ giveaway
    • Used year to Date: 483.25 yards
    • Added this Week: 8 yards
      • 8 yards given to me for charitable sewing (3 yd went for pet beds, other yardage will be used for Project Linus)
    • Net Used for 2012: 185.5 yards
    • YTD Used for Charity: 153.25 yards (32% of total used)

See more stash reports at Patchwork Times!

Star Wars, Return of the Quilt: Finished!

At long last, the final Star Wars quilt is DONE! I finished it during the Black Friday Sew In yesterday (thanks for entering the giveaway - the winner has been notified by email!).

The layout is the same as the previous quilts - applique center panel with a logo border and surrounding “pictures”.

Perhaps you’ve heard that the Millennium Falcon is my favorite ship ever, so of course that’s what I put in the center of my own Star Wars quilt.

You can see a bit of the lime green thread I used to mimic the hyperdrive jump in the starfield.  I have a thicker thread I would have loved to use, but my machine gets cranky about it so I had to stick with the Aurifil, which quilts like a hot knife through butter.

Of course the only way to improve Han Solo is to surround him by cats.

Star Wars, Return of the Quilt

I still love C3P0 being crushed by the tires in the trash compactor on the prison level.

Owly ImagesBonus shot- I had some leftover ships I had prepped to use on a previous Star Wars quilt, but they weren’t working out the way I wanted. I used them instead to make a subtle new nametag for my guild.

I think Morelli has as big a crush on Han Solo as me.

Easy Street - Step 1 Finished!

Well, my feet may hurt from standing at the pressing table, and my neck might be sore from hunching over the sewing machine, but by golly I got 192 four patches sewn tonight for the first step of Bonnie Hunter’s Easy Street. (I should point out this is in addition to finishing the quilting and binding on the Star Wars quilt - pictures tomorrow when the lighting it better on that).

This brown is not my favorite color, but it’s a nice complement to the dark greens, burgundies, and golds in the rest of the quilt. For reference, here are the fabrics I am using for this little soiree.

You can see other quilters’ progress on Bonnie’s linky post.

HtbaS - Episode 105

I talk about finishing Festive Flurries and the Sugar & Orange Spice quilt, go through feedback, talk about the Black Friday Sew-In, and quilting the Star Wars quilt. I also give book reviews for several series.


Black Friday Sew-In Giveaway!

Well, I don’t have a picture of what I’ll be giving away because it’s not quite settled yet. And the reason it’s not settled yet are 1) coffee, or specifically the lack thereof and B) YOU get to pick the prize.

I’m giving away 4 FQs, but to win you have to comment and tell me which color you prefer.  Here are your options:

  • Purple
  • Blue
  • Teal/Aqua
  • Dark Green
  • Light Green
  • Brown

Make sure I have a way to contact you (either via email or twitter).  Entries will close at midnight Eastern time tonight!

Edited to add: If this is the first time you’ve commented since my blog moved to the WordPress host, I will have to moderate your comment. Fear not! I will approve all comments before doing the drawing, and will be moderating throughout the day.

WIP Wednesday: The Hunk of Junk

I’ve been working on my last Star Wars quilt.  This is the center applique shape for the starfield.  I’ve gotten it stitched down and pieced into the top, and am in the process of quilting it. I’ll be echoing some of these shapes, and using a lime green thread to make the “hyperdrive burst” on the starfield field.

On Friday I’ll start the Bonnie Hunter Easy Street mystery quilt, and I’m also figuring out the pattern for my daughter’s full-size Christmas quilt. And an Amy Butler Weekender bag.