Saturday, June 30, 2012

Photos, and a bag

I made this tote bag following the tutorial on Purl Bee.  It took me longer than 40 minutes, which was not a surprise to me, but it still went together pretty quickly, and with good results.  My daughter wants me to make one for her now with fabric of her choosing.  We shall go to the fabric store and see what strikes her fancy.

I finished my 365 photo project yesterday!  A leap day was included, though, so it turned out to be a 366 project.  My photo set on Flickr has over 400 photos, because some days I couldn't choose just one photo to represent the day.  Sadly, I missed one day in July, and 4 or 5 days in September, so the project covers June 23, 2011 to June 29, 2012.  I'm going to continue the project so that I have a photo a day for all of 2012.

I started the photo chronicle because I knew it would be a transition year for my family.  This past year was indeed a year of changes.  My son completed his first year of high school, my daughter her first year of middle school.  I started working (albeit very infrequently, which is perfect for me!).  My husband and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary.  Time does indeed march along.  I look at my son and feel astounded that he has only 3 years of school left before college.  How is that possible?  The reminiscent teenager inside of me knows that, for him, these next three years will be a veritable lifetime, but the mama in me is all too aware of how fast that time will rush by for his parents.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Baby Quilts!

I managed to complete two baby quilts for my niece's baby in very short order.  (Please no one stop by my house any time soon.  It's a wreck.  All quilting all the time means no time for tidying.)

Why did I make two quilts for one little baby?  Well, a few months ago my niece told me she was not able to find a crib quilt she liked, and she wondered if I would be able to make one for her.  Of course I would!!!   I was honored to be asked to make THE QUILT for the baby's bed!  My niece lives a few hours away from me, so we couldn't shop for fabric together, but she sent me inspiration photos of some decor fabric she liked, so I kept those in mind as I headed to the fabric store.

This quilt was the result:

What a riot of cheer and color!  In fact, maybe too much cheer and color... When I looked at her photo again after I stitched, her inspiration fabric was muted and understated in comparison to what I'd produced, and I started to think I'd taken a wrong turn when I shopped.  I worried I had stitched a circus for her instead of what she wanted.  So I headed to the fabric store again and kept the words "soft, muted" in my head as I shopped.  This quilt was the result:

 A toned-down version of the first one, more in keeping with her theme.  I gave them both to her at her shower on Saturday, and she loved them both!
 They both go very well in the nursery.  She'll use one in the bed, and one to cover the back of a chair.  She's not sure yet which will go where.  Here they are, together in the crib:
Ah, how pretty.

I had technical difficulties with the making of the second quilt.  I got the top pieced just fine and the quilt sandwich pinned no problem, and I was zipping merrily through the quilting, feeling like a rock star for being so close to finishing my second quilt in as many weeks, when my sewing machine started to make an ominous knocking sound and my quilting stitches started to jump and go crooked.  Seriously???  I often have thoughts of buying a nicer machine, and I always talk myself out of it, but when that knocking started and my stitches swerved around like I was operating under the influence, I was ready to heave that sewing machine out the window and go buy something fancy and new-fangled.  Cooler heads prevailed, though, and after a careful inspection I realized it was my walking foot that was broken, not my machine. Since I was so close to being done, I finished the quilting using the presser foot, which was not ideal, but went okay.

The pattern is Alicia Paulson's Ollalieberry Ice Cream Quilt.  I've stitched this before, as seen here.  It's a fun little pattern.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Quite possibly the cutest thing ever

This is quite possibly the cutest thing I've ever made!

I've made this embroidery before (here), but that time I ribbon-wrapped a hoop for a frame.  This time I wanted to make it into a little quilted wall-hanging, so I used scraps from one of the baby quilts I'm working and arranged them in a Log Cabin style pattern. The result has actually made me dance with happiness!  It's so cute, I can hardly stand it!

The embroidery and the quilts are for my great-niece-to-be.  The baby shower is this Saturday!  I have been busy, busy, busy with the stitching!  I will hopefully be able to show off both crib quilts soon.

Embroidery pattern is from Bumpkin.

(Blogger's new interface makes for very tiny photos, which makes me very unhappy, but you can click on any picture to see a larger image of it.)