love to quilt...

here is a sneak peek at the quilting on the rocketboy quilt....it all started with a little square in a square..
here is square number 2 up close.

i love to straight line quilt with my awesome walking foot!

another view -

i think i just finished debating how to finish the small top portion and then the larger bottom portion - overall the quilting has gone fairly fast - i think i started about 3 days ago, but my quilting spurts are short and limited. A sick child at home today helped me get in a good couple hours. hoping to finish over the holiday weekend!


the finale...

This is the final chapter on these placemats - they are finished and shipped off...a complete set of 5 times 2. I had fun making them and especially trying my hand at new quilting styles that I had been wanting to try. I think hands down my favorite is still straight line and the square within a square quilting method - both to do and look at.

Flower pattern

Square pattern (see the chalk lines?!)

More squares, or rather funky rectangles...

Simple, straight lines
I'm forcing myself to get down on the hard, tile floor and baste together the Rocketboy quilt after I finish this post. I want to quilt it, just dread the basting! I'm also working on starting a Christmas table runner that I hope to get done before the holiday!



I finished the fall table runner I was quilting for my mom last week, binding and all. I realized about 1/3 of the way through that I picked a rather 'over-zealous' quilting pattern as usual and it seemed to take forever to finish in my short spurts of free - time.
Up close you can see that I quilted a maple & oak leaf and then a tree pattern to match the shapes in the fabric.

I used a burnt orange color thread and a chocolate corduroy for the binding - Love Love Love the binding - I am going to do this more often - I really like the added texture it adds!

The backing may be my favorite part - I really like the pattern and I had to cut it to get it to fit the length so i added a little personal patchwork touch to it! I hope she likes it!

the entire back

I think you could easily reverse it and do both sides - i used a flannel remnant as the 'batting' so it is nice and then for the table - which i think gives it a more modern look and feel!


Placemat progress

I must say i'm a bit over sewing with this fabric....and i'm sure you are too! Hopefully this is the next to last post on the placemats! I have the final four quilted and waiting on binding. I do love how the quilting turned out though and because the placemats are 12"x18" it isn't a perfect square pattern..

I have consolidated my strips into this jar to keep them together and off the cutting / work table. I have added some solid strips from my scrap pile to give a little more diversity in the blocks. I'm not sure how many blocks i'm doing yet, but i have a feeling i may run out of this fabric stash - which really is the end-goal! I'm working on blocks 8-12 on these and have been doing them in group of 4 for no reason in particular...

One final strip to sew on the bottom of the rocketboy backing then on to the basting. Also piecing a backing for a table runner i'm quilting....hope to do today before the harvest festival...if i can get a certain little one down for a nap...happy sewing!


Rocketboy Update

My lovely quilt top all folded nice and neat with the binding fabric placed on top waiting for me to finish piecing the back (which i'm heading over to now)

A sneak peek at the top....

a close-up...

and the finale! i love this one and can't wait to quilt it - i think i know what i'm going to do...just need to pick out the thread color.....bold or subtle?


will work for fabric....

Guess what came in my mail today? A new stash addition of Anthology Fabrics High Society Bundle in Clay from Hawthorne Threads compliments of my mum! I have been wanting this bundle ever since it came out.....and lucky for me my mom needed a fall table runner quilted and bound...so we traded - what an awesome trade, right? The best part - she ordered this on Friday and I received it in the post today - wow! The 3 below are my favorites - if I had to pick favorites....

I already have plans for the fat quarters - I'm going to cut them into 4.5" squares to best utilize the size of the quarters and mix and match with some kona solids to put together a quilt front. Our living room is a mixture of taupes, chocolates and warm neutrals so it will make the perfect replacement for an old throw.

I can't wait to get started on these! I am feeling pretty good about finishing up some WIP's this week. The last 4 placemats are stacked neatly ready for the binding, the robot quilt front is finished waiting on the piecing of the back, and i finished 4 more strip blocks for a total of 8 and started on 4 more. Yeah! What are you working on this week?


be back soon...

I haven't been able to post lately because I just got back from a short, but much needed vacation! The first in over 7 years without our boys to be exact! I have been working extra before and after to catch up - so I'm hoping to be back at it next week....enjoy the pics!

sailing on the hobie - something we never have a chance to do without the kids - although it's fun with them too!

welcome aboard!!!

chillin on the island!

formal night! somehow i still fit in that 'perfect black dress' from college!

the cruise ship!
I took my machine in for annual service yesterday - hoping to have it back by tomorrow - I guess you get extra fast service in Florida before the 'birds' fly down! wowsers!


quilting flowers

i decided to really step outside the box on this one and do flower quilting. I had seen the idea on this blog - which also just happened to be posted on my birthday of quilting big, loopy flowers!

I know the pictures aren't the best but the sunlight helps show the flower with the dark thread. I absolutely loved doing these and I seem to be a lot better at flowers than stippling...

I think I may try this on a bigger quilt if i take the chance and do some bright, fun fabrics even though i have a house full of boys! It went fairly fast too. It does definitely use more thread and by the 3rd or 4th loop the center of the flowers become stiff with all of the stitches. I would like to try this in a variegated thread on a child's shirt without any extra fabric, but just the stitches as the pattern - hmmm....



here is an up-to-date picture of the quilt in progress named 'rocketboy'. i have the main blocks done, I am going to add another strip of orange to the outside of the row to complete this part.

one of my favorite parts of making a quilt has become choosing the binding and putting it on. I love coordinating this part of the project....so i'm happy to say I made a stash-addition and ordered this awesome print for the binding. It is amy butler's lotus full moon polka dot tangerine and I found it at Pink Chalk Fabrics. This is an older print and becoming harder and harder to find.

I took a couple shots testing it out as 'binding' - I think it's gonna be fab-u-lotus!

Originally, I wanted something w/ red in it to bring out the bit of red in the blocks, but I couldn't find the lotus in the red color anywhere, so i thought tangerine would be the next best option.

can't wait to finish so i can get this binding on there....must finish placemats first!


not for the faint at heart

Do you drive in the left lane, when deep down you know you should be in the right lane? Do you tap the brakes often? Do you run out of patience easily?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then stippling might not be for you! I finally dove in head first with a set of the place-mats I'm making and tried my hand at stippling. It isn't my favorite quilting pattern, but some people do it and make it look really nice and easy. i read several people say it goes much faster than straight line quilting, so i wanted to try it.

I thought I'd put my pride aside and show you my first attempts - and they are rather ugly i tell you! The entire time i was doing this i kept thinking of sea anemone or bad maple leaves. The hardest part was getting my foot to work with my hands and get my stitch length adjusted.

I found this explanation of stippling: Stippling is a common form of "filler" quilting. Either done by hand or by machine, it creates a pattern of closely-sewn, roaming lines that fill background spaces on a quilt.

I dove in without a real plan as to which way to go or how to fill in the space other than the few online tutorials i had watched. Looking at it now....i think i can do better and practice will make 'better'! I had some 'harsh' edges when i wasn't sure where to go, but the faster i worked the better off i was.

My stitches started really long so i needed to get comfortable with the pedal more depressed and working quicker. It did go quickly and I did remove some of the really bad stitches that were too long.

I think i'll try it again, maybe on some pot-holders or another small project - i think it would be a great skill to have and develop as well as an addition to my quilting options! Tell me your story about learning to stipple!


A peek inside my Studio

I thought it might be fun to show you a little peek into my studio. I was taking some pictures this past weekend, and it was fairly clean, so a good time to snap some shots! Here is an overall view of the room with my sewing area and cutting table. In our home in Indiana I had turquoise walls, which I miss dearly. This is way bland for my taste, but it works for now!

A different view including my window overlooking the canal.

Some Scrapbooking Supplies / Stash

A jar with my leftover bindings / triangles left

My many colors of thread for appliqueing and the left-over spools...I don't have anything else to fill this jar just yet, and it's somewhat rewarding to know how much you've sewn and used your beloved machine!
Lots o' ribbon for crafting

And that's the tour! As my number of quilting projects grows I may need to find a new way of organizing. Believe it or not my fabric stash is limited to 1 large metal basket housed in our laundry room shelving. I have 1 small bag on the floor inside my cutting table where i throw my scraps. I have only made a handful of quilts (less than 10) so i don't have a need to color sort scraps or organize them further at this point. It has taken much willpower to keep my stash at this level...as you can tell my scrapbooking hobby didn't include the same willpower! I am living the motto 'less is more' and using what i have, as hard as it is!


what i'm working on....

Here's a look at what I'm working on this week:

I finished 4 of the strip quilt blocks and have 4 more in process, a look at what a 'big' block will look like - do you see the 'X' through the middle that forms when you put them together?

Here is one of the Robot blocks for my bigger guy - he wants a new quilt. It will have oranges, greys and blues. A bigger modern pattern - inspiration here.

And here is a new small system for organizing projects (instead of piles on my cutting table / ironing board) It will work for now. Top row: placemats / sailboat quilt. 2nd row: Strip quilt blocks / fabric. 3rd Row: Pillowcase / fabric backing / Improv quilt fabric.

I have 4 more placemats done and pinned ready for quilting and binding. A bigger look at my studio / sewing space tomorrow!


i'm a winner!

One of my favorite things about reading blogs, besides the inspiration and friendships, is the chance at a random giveaway. You leave a comment and then cross your fingers all week in hopes that you've been chosen by the random generator. Do you comment first, last or somewhere in-between....what are my chances? I have left many comments and never won a quilt-blog giveaway until about 2 weeks ago!!! Not only did i win this giveaway, but I won something awesome!

I joined the Improv(e) Your Butt Challenge on Tallgrass Prairie Studio's Blog and by completing my weekly goal was able to enter to win part of her scrappy stash. After finding out I was the winner I will admit I stalked the mailbox / carrier for about 10 days and was so excited to find it in the post.

An overall view of my goody bag

A little bit better pic of each fabric. I can't decide what to do with these....the challenge is to exercise more regularly and the reward part was a piece of fabric for every mile completed - forming an improv project / quilt. I thought it would be perfect to use this stash to start my improv project.

My absolute favorite scrap!

The collection of my most favorite scraps out of the pile!