Monday, July 6, 2015

Monday Morning Star Count, July 6, 2015

I'm getting a little better with these guys, slowly but surely.

I've got basting down and I've started piecing them together.  Once you get into a rhythm it's fun, but not mindless yet.  I think I have been clipping my inner curves too deep..
I pieced almost all of these units together and I want to make it three times the size.  I basted a few more this weekend, but didn't grab a full count.  less than 20, I think.

I've got a new sewing partner too-- I'm visiting friends in Oregon for a few weeks (headed to Sisters on Friday!!!) and their oldest daughter has wanted to play with fabric and sew with me almost immediately since I arrived.  No complaints from me there!  She even made a block for Travel Quilt #6..
Tomorrow I'm taking her fabric shopping.  Can't wait to see her tastes in fabric.

Today starts the Apple-a-Day Blog Hop for All Points Patchwork.  My hop day is Friday, but follow this link to see what everyone else is making~

Apple-a-Day Hop
And be sure to link up your own EPP progress below!

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Monday, June 29, 2015

Monday Morning Star Count, June 29th

Ok, ok, ok.  You know how sometimes you think you don't like something, but then you see your friend trying it so you get curious?

I feel.. intrigued.  Scared.  but very curious..
Next week Diane is having the next phase of her All Points Patchwork blog hop, theme:
Apple Cores.

So I volunteered to participate.  I'm nuts, right?  I am not scared of sewing curves (by hand or machine), and I can EPP in my sleep, but what has me intimidated and at the same time, motivated, is the need to thread baste through the papers.  Sure, I could finally try glue basting too, but I want to give traditional thread basting a try.   If I end up with a glue stick by the end of next week, you'll hear all about it.

So I ordered templates from paperpieces.com and I got this really cool acrylic template (I'll explain more in my blog hop post on the 10th).  I cut up some fabric and gave it a shot..



What surprised me at first was that it takes a long time to do this... I think I've just got so much experience with diamonds and hexagons (and cutting the patches with a ruler and rotary cutter) that having to slow down and cut out no more than two patches at a time just felt like it was taking forever.  My initial attempts at basting went pretty slowly too.  I think it took me about 35-40 minutes to baste these 4 templates while chatting with a friend.  I know things will speed up the more I do, but for now.. hmm.  it's not as bad as I feared.  The thread basting is calm and soothing, quite enjoyable, so long as you're not in a rush.  My blog hop project idea calls for maybe 40-50 apple cores so I've got a ways to go yet.  I'll let you know how it goes..

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Monday, June 22, 2015

Monday Morning Star Count, June 22nd


I sewed all weekend!  but only a tiny bit of it was EPP.  I hung out with Christa one evening and basted a lot, but my only piecing was getting these two together.


I thought a lot about EPP though and put in an order at http://www.paperpieces.com/ for some new-to-me shapes and some fussy cutting templates.  When they arrive I'll share more pics and info about my summer stitching plans...

For now, it's your turn.  Please show off more progress than I did, and if you can't, give us a good reason!  I have  no guilt or shame, I finished quilting the taupe spiderweb borders, made and attached binding and started stitching it down.  I also pieced my Sunshine and Shadows from the 2015 New Years scrappylogcabin quilt along (check out my instagram feed for lots and lots of pics).  I added in some crumb piecing and hand print blocks, it came out really scrappy and wonderful.  It's a riot of color.  More pics when it's quilted (or basted, or half quilted.. again, it's easier to post to IG as I'm sewing than to stop and write a full blog post.).

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Friday, June 19, 2015

Yuma Quilt Along with Gotham Quilts


This summer, Gotham Quilts is having a quilt along for their Yuma pattern.  Looks cool, huh?  When I saw everybody at the guild meeting a few weeks ago I was overcome with a need to participate in something.. maybe I'm in the mood for a challenge?  All these triangles certainly seem to fill that need.  So, I'm going to give it a try.  We've got from now til August, details on the Gotham Quilts blog.  Download the FREE pattern from their site here.

Here's my initial fabric pull.  It's sitting on the living room floor so I can let it sink in and think about it for a while.

How long do you usually let a fabric pull marinate before cutting into it?
Sometimes I grab fabric and cut right away, especially for EPP units, but there I don't choose all the fabrics (or even a palette) ahead of time.  I don't often choose fabrics for the entire quilt upfront.  I think when I do then I need to let it sit.  Are the greens right?  Do I have a softer orange in a pile somewhere?  Am I going to bother to go look for it?  (yes, this is how I choose fabrics for my quilts-- is it within easy reach?  Ok, let's use it).  How do you choose?

Monday, June 15, 2015

Monday Morning Star Count, June 15th

I spent so much time on the Spider Web this past week that I haven't even touched Travel Quilt #5.  While tearing apart the sewing room for appropriate binding fabric though, I finally found my 1.5" pentagon templates which I'm going to use for my project in Diane Gilleland's All Points Patchwork blog hop, the Halloween portion.



Yes, I've got months, but I still can't find my Halloween prints and I want to get working on it soon.  The project concept is solid, but the actual design and fabric placement is still up in the air so I want to make some units and get my ideas in order, you know?

I was so happy to see such a nice response to my MMSC link up revival.  You guys are awesome, and some of you have been sewing up a storm!  If you haven't seen everyone's links from last week, scroll down to the post.  If you've got some progress to show (even if it's just finding a pack of templates!), tell us about it and how it makes you feel.  Can't wait to see who joins up this week~

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Sunday, June 14, 2015

Taupe Spiderweb and some Step by Step FMQ





I had some help with my laundry  line photo shoot this morning.  He couldn't quite understand why it was harder to run through the folded quilt on the line now than an couple weeks ago (in my header pic), well dude, mommy quilted it.  It's heavy now and warm.  Once he found out it made a good tent, we had some fun.
I basted this huge thing last weekend, it's 85" x 101" and if you follow me on IG, you have seen that I've been staying up way too late at night to work on the quilting.  I put undulating S curves in the stars and organic-ish swirls in the spider webs, but then I was at a loss for what to do with the borders.  I flipped through Christina Cameli's Step by Step Free Motion Quilting and fell in love with the Filament pattern.  (why is it so easy to fall in love with quilt patterns?)
I practiced a bit on paper, crowd sourced my FMQ questions late last night on IG, tossed it around in my head til I figured it out and then I gave it a try.
Christina's instructions are so clear.  If you are stuck in your FMQ or scared to step out of your comfort zone, please pick up a copy of her book and give it a try.  There are something like 80 patterns in there.  Use one as is or alter it as you like.  That's what I did last week on a pillow cover.  I let George pick the pattern and then I tried it with spirals and squared spirals.  George approved.
I totally have a long way to go with my FMQ, but I'm definitely out of my rut.  I've got a pile of tops completed and all I want to do now is baste them so I can try out more cool things.  Summer vacation, you'll be here soon, right?
I wonder what Filament would look like done across an entire quilt....?

Monday, June 8, 2015

Monday Morning Star Count Revival

I keep doing EPP.
I try to stop.
I even got a job and a bunch of other time consuming responsibilities to help break the habit, but...

I can't.

So I'm reviving the Star Count.  Once a month didn't work for me.  I need you guys every week. Like Amanda Jean posted on Friday, the accountability that the link up provides is really strong (and comforting in some ways too)

I've started basting and piecing everyday as part of a meditation practice.  It's really amazing how much clearer my mind gets after just 10 minutes of silent EPP.


Of course if you only sew for 10 minutes a day, progress is slow, but it adds up.  I've been making my way through a few hexi-diamonds and a lot of black sashing strips.
Is anybody out there to play along?  I miss you guys!

Here's the Linky!!