Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A mini quilt along

Now that, I think I can handle.
Remember when I was complaining that I want to sew other quilts, by machine, but my EPP obsession keeps pulling me back to the couch?  Well I just found Chase's Pack Patch Mini Quilt Along and I think this may be just what I need.

 Each week she is giving us two themes which we'll use to choose our fabrics and make the block.  The block above is my "true colors"-- I went with soft pink and navy, the colors I often choose to wear.  I don't usually quilt with them together though, so the block looks strange to me, yet familiar..
Another stipulation of the QAL is to only use fabric from your scrap bin.  I guess this assumes that quilters have only one scrap bin where they keep all their scraps.  Well.. that's not the case for me.  I've got 4 scrap bins that I can see from where I'm sitting, and there are at least 5 more upstairs.  Somehow I feel this mini quilt along really won't make a dent in my stash.. My point though is that the fabrics I used in block #1 aren't favorites, or even ones I really like.  I just grabbed them because they were the right color and size.  I wonder how often that will happen on this qal.  It is my usual method of fabric selection, but sometimes I wish I could focus a bit more and deliberately use fabrics I love.  These tiny blocks (the patches finish at 1") are a great excuse to use some of my cherished scraps, and when it came to do block #2, favorite colors, the fabric pull was pretty easy.  Turquoise and taupe.  I don't know how else to describe this grey-brown batik.. for me it falls into the range of taupes that I love to see but don't always remember to use.  Yes, I really should make this an exercise in deliberate fabric choices.
If you've got fabric scraps and aren't scared of tiny blocks, why not join in the fun?  The quilt along is happening over here on flickr.  Instructions for making the blocks are on Chase's blog
I haven't been hanging out on flickr lately (the changes to the page layout a while back just put me off), but their app seems to be pretty easy to navigate and there's lots of old friends and acquaintances that I haven't seen in a while, so I'm excited to get involved with this.  And after the 10 weeks, I'll have.. a mini quilt.  That'll be nice.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Monday Morning Star Count 2014/15

Though I faithfully brought my sewing box with me everywhere this past week, I hardly managed to get in more than a couple stitches.  I think I stitched on just part of the outer ring of an old diamond.. not even photo worthy.  Sorry!  I am almost finished with the binding on Sabrina's quilt though.  Hoping to have it back to them asap so Merrill can show it off when the family's together this week.
This coming week is Spring Break and with George off of school I don't yet know what sort of trouble we'll get into.  I'm hoping for Easter crafts and playdates, but I think we'll probably end up with lots more sidewalk chalk, digging in the yard, and early baths.  I'm guessing it'll be a hands-on mothering sort of week, so my EPP expectations aren't to high. Gotta make memories with the kiddos, don't want them to remember me as all-quilt and no play.

I hope you guys have been more productive.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Quilting on the Go in Spanish!!

I'm so happy to share that Quilting on the Go has been translated into Spanish~
I'm so excited that it will be accessible to even more quilters in Spain and beyond.  It is published by Editorial Acanto S.A. and currently available at Amazon.es

If you're out an about and see a copy in the book store, please comment and let me know~

Monday, April 7, 2014

Monday Morning Star Count 2014/14

I have had SO MUCH EPP this week!  I'm almost overwhelmed by it, almost sick of it, but then the truth hits me-- I've tried to stop, to work on other quilts, but I can't.  You can never have too much EPP.
I don't think I will ever get tired of people bringing their EPP beginnings (or finishes) to share with me, like these from my lecture in Mineola last Thursday--

Or the delight that comes from giving a small patchwork gift to a friend.
(I made this little pin cushion for Laura out of 1" hexies and walnut shells)

And I couldn't count the amount of times I heard a quilter say something like, "ooh, this is addictive"  "I really like this" or "I could see myself doing this all the time" in the past week (taught or guided 3 EPP workshops/sew ins in 3 days).  Seeing the spark in other quilters as they piece peacefully is one of the new joys in my life.  Thanks guys. 

Because I have been using Travel Quilt #5 as a teaching tool for these workshops, I haven't made much progress.  No new completed diamonds to share, but I did do the center of this birdie one.
How about you?  Progress big or small, we'd love to see it~

Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Morning Star Count 2014/13

ISO!  Please help if you can~
 I have decided to use this beautiful Timeless Treasures print for my background hexies on Travel Quilt #5, but after working up a pattern in EQ, I see that I'm about 2 yards short..  So I'm searching for more.  If you've got a chance, please flip through your stash and see if you have any your could part with.  It's Jacobean Arbor by Patricia Campbell for Timeless Treasures.  I bought it at Cloth Peddler in Virginia in 2010.  If you can help me out, please let me know!
These are my background bits, I'm piecing them in 5-hexie strips to keep them portable.  I don't want to join the diamond hexies til I've got a few more done (to play with layout, of course), but I shouldn't wait too much longer.. I'd like to join so I can free up and reuse my templates.

At our pillow workshop last Saturday, we talked a bit about stitch sequence, and I took this picture to illustrate how I've been getting these diamonds together.
 Honestly, it took me a while before I fell onto a sequence that worked for me.. Here I work in groups of 3 mostly.. join the center part in two triangles and a 3-hexie strip.  Then do two more triangles of the outer color, and two strips of 5.  Stitch the 5s on first, then travel your thread through the seam allowance to get the corners on.  Motifs this large still take a while to assemble, but they're worth it.  As my stack grows, I like them more and more.


 I've been having a bad day.
See, my yahoo email address has been hacked (If you've gotten spam from me, you know), and it was sending links to weight loss supplements repeatedly to my family, friends, acquaintances, and business contacts.  This is so embarrassing!!!
Today I finally decided I'd had enough, and I've spent most of my screen time trying to switch over to gmail.  So.. if you get anymore emails from my yahoo account, please disregard them!  If you'd like to send me email, you can send it to jessunderquilts at gmail dot com.

While I was freaking out about this whole mess this morning, George drew a picture to show me he understood what was going on (those are laptops, btw).
I'll paraphrase George's explanation of his drawing, and the situation:
Someone hacks the other person's email so he's happy.  The next guy sees an email from mom and then it's spam, so he's sad.  Mom sees her account is sending spam so she's sad. 
That's just about exactly the way it happened.  He really amazes me.
Anyway, I hope to have this week's MMStarCount up tomorrow morning, thanks for your patience.  (Remember, you can link up all week~)

Monday, March 24, 2014

Monday Morning Star Count 2014/12

Upcoming English Paper Piecing Events
 I've got a lot going on in the next few weeks, and if you're local, I'd love for you to join me and do some EPP!  Here's a list of my upcoming lectures and workshops..

March 29th     Hexagon Pillow Workshop, 1-4 pm
+ This is a workshop for Huntington Guild members only, please contact Laura or Gilma if you are interested in attending. 

April 3rd   EPP Lecture at the Evening Star Quilters Guild, Mineola, NY
+ 7:30 p.m.
Mineola Community Center
155 Washington Avenue
Mineola, NY
For more information on the guild, see their website.

April 4th  Hexagon Pillow Workshop, 10am-1pm
+ This workshop is open to non-guild members, and there are still plenty of spots available.   If you'd like to join us, please email me (jessunderquilts at yahoo dot com) and I'll send details.

April 6th     Hexagon Pillow Workshop
+ This is a workshop for Huntington Guild members only, please contact Laura or Gilma if you are interested in attending.  (tentative date)

May 17th  English Paper Piecing Demo, 2-4 pm
+ This is a free workshop, open to the public, but space is limited so reservations are necessary.
To reserve your spot, please register online using this form or write to handmade@nypl.org with your name and the date of this event.
New York Public Library
Stephen A. Schwarzman Building
Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street, Rm. 227
New York City

Sadly, my Greek Island Quilt Retreat had to be cancelled due to low enrollment.  I'm very disappointed, hopefully we'll have a better turn out for 2015.  When details are available, I'll post them here.

For my EPP progress this week, I've got the following:  
I still need a lot more to meet my goal of 20 by the summer.. but can I count the partials on the edge towards that number?  Is that cheating?

How are you doing?