Saturday, February 27, 2010

boys boys boys

Only significance of this post name is that the three quilt tops below are all intended for boys.

My latest quilt top, for Noah.

Another quilt top, for a special baby!

And this one isn't actually a quilt for a boy, but the remaining squares I had cut of another quilt-top I'm currently piecing for a boy. As you can see, I've been busy quilting (or more accurately, piecing!).
But now I need some help. I'm currently quilting the 2nd quilt shown above and am having trouble. I have to admit...quilting is by far my least favorite part of making a quilt. I have had problems since day one with every quilt top I've ever done. Some have been easier than others, and some problems have been minor with some being downright disastrous (and therefore quilt tops ripped apart, scrapped or still sitting unfinished...).

The problem I'm encountering now is this....I'm using my walking foot and doing some straight-line quilting. Problem is, I'll be quilting along...and everything is going fine....and then all of a sudden it skips on me. So I'll have stitch stitch stitch and then s t i t c h . One big long stitch. Make sense?

I know it would be SO much easier to show with a picture but I'm currently at my MILs and can't do that easily right now. If anyone has any insight for me I'd greatly appreciate it! I have a new needle in, checked to make sure my bobbin is in right, etc. The quilt is so fab I want to finish it so badly but sometimes you just need to set it aside and walk away...kwim?

Time for a glass of wine. :-)

Monday, February 22, 2010

oven mitts

Last year (meaning, Christmas of 2008) my mother-in-law made this fabulous kitchen for Noah using nothing but some stock cabinets and scrap wood. Yeah, she pretty much rocks. Noah loves it, and uses it all the time.

He loves to cook on it while we're cooking meals and he gives us plates of his food for us to eat with our other food.

He was all bummed out while cooking one day last week because he couldn't find one of his missing oven mitts. We looked for it (although admittedly - rather quickly and not that hard!) and couldn't find it, so I suggested that mom make him a new matching set. His face lit up when I said it, and Lilah was taking a nice long nap, so we headed straight downstairs to work on it.

I let him pick any fabric he wanted and he chose this solid blue. I happened to have some grosgrain ribbon in one of my drawers so he also picked the colors for those as well as the bias tape.

He was so excited when I finished the first one (which came together in all of 10 minutes - nice!) that he started running upstairs before I reminded him we had one more to make! And then of course, once we were done, they immediately had to go on their designated hook.

I hope we have lots more fun projects like this to come!

Friday, February 19, 2010

going solo

Helloooo?? Remember me?

Yeah, I'm around. Been solo parenting this week so all of my attention is focused on the kiddos. And we've had a blast! But's exhausing. Single parents deserve a medal or something. Seriously. Of course it doesn't help that I purposely shirk my sleep time to watch half-pipe competitions til midnight. But wow - was it worth it!

Lots of crafting going on around here lately. Lots and lots and lots. And even a tiny bit of sewing. Noah requested some new oven mitts for his play kitchen. Fun!

Pictures to come...

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

february quilt blocks

I've been up since 3am with my lovely 7 month old. Honestly a rare thing for her. But if you're going to be up, why not blog too, eh?

I just wanted to share some of the quilt blocks my Nittany Block Party pals made for me. So.freakin.awesome. Seriously. I am already loving this quilt. See Carla's block below.

Beth's block above.

And Ruth's block above. As Carrie of Sex in the City would say....hello lover!
I love each of them and can already see the quilt coming together! I better get started with some of my own now! Thanks ladies!

what i've been up to

Lack of posts...I know. Business has finally rebounded from the post-holiday lull, and I've been filling wholesale orders to boot! I also still (never seems to end....maybe because I can't seem to stop buying fabric....) have new fabrics and new dress styles and things to add to the shop. All in good time.

I wanted to share my new shop cards with all of you though. I LOVE them! Of course, they're moo minicards, which means that they're gorgeous and small and perfect! I had been seeing them as I ordered things off of etsy, and just loved them. Then I also saw a discount on the Chiot's Run blog.
Bummer is the discount is over, but honestly, the cards are worth it! It works seamlessly with etsy (you get to auto upload the pics right from your active listings) and the pictures look just as beautiful on the cards as they do online. I'm loving filling orders right now and getting to tuck one of these into each package!

Of course it helps tremendously that I'm so lucky to have Kelly Anderson shooting many of my items for me. Seriously, she SELLS my stuff. I mean, I of course love my items and think they'd sell without her, but I truly believe and know that I sell so much more because of her. The pictures are that important. And they rock. She rocks! Seriously...if any of you are in Arizona, check out her blog and that should be reason enough to book a session with her!

I also recently ordered some boutique labels due to my increasing wholesale orders. I also like to be able to put these in my reversible styles since I don't include a hang tag with those...I really like the child to be able to wear it reversible without worrying about a tag. Loving those too. Purchased here. Gotta love the fellow etsians!

Other things I've been up to? Our days have been filled with crafts lately. There is glitter everywhere. Seriously. On don't think it's leaving! And now we're expecting around 9 inches of snow so I'm hoping to take Noah sledding tomorrow!

Monday, February 1, 2010

sherbet stars

This is my first finished quilt of 2010. I'm calling it sherbet stars...I started the stars when Block Party introduced the friendship star block back in November. I saw that they were planning on introducing the next block on February 1st, so figured I better get a move on finishing it!
The sherbet part comes from the colors which came from a quilt bundle from Fabricworm which I blogged about here.

I did very little quilting. From the get-go with this one I knew I wanted to simply outline each star. I thought I might add more, but as I got closer and closer to finishing, I chose to leave it with just that much.

For the back I used a Kona solid in Apricot and the binding is Celery I believe. I also added a strip bordered by the white muslin used on the front. Each square in the strip is a print used in the stars on the front, with the exception of the green centers.

I love love love how this quilt turned out. Part of it is probably the fact that it's my first non-square patchwork quilt. But it was not without it's challenges for me. And I'm not gonna sugar-coat it and gloss over that. I think that's part of craft-blogging. We don't always get it right and we aren't always without our share of challenges. So, where do I begin?

First off, the only thing I don't like about heavily pieced blocks is the bulk you end up with in the seams. So, I think I'm learning to like pressing down the center of seams. Also, I LOVE the color and softness of the bleached white muslin in the finished product, but I do not like piecing with it. I think it's really thin, stretches too easily and creates problems in that way. And finally, I had a problem on the binding of this one. I've never gotten totally and completely done with a quilt only to realize I missed about a 3" to 4" strip on the front where the binding missed the quilt top! And there's nothing like getting totally and completely done with a quilt top, finding an issue like that to totally and completely deflate you. But life goes on! So, in all honesty, I haven't fixed it yet. It should be a quick fix since it's only that small section, but after looking at it yesterday I just had to put it down, and WALK AWAY....know what I mean?

My next quilt is going to be for Noah. What happened to the quilt I planned for Christmas you ask? Oh - well, that's a looonnnnggggg story. Quilt is still in progress. I want something quick and fast and easy so that's what the next one will be! But I have so many other quilts I want to do this year....a zig zag quilt, I have the entire lines of Nicey Jane and Hope Valley to use. I want to do Oh Fransson's Paintbox Square quilt (in two versions).....the list goes on. Back to quilting!