Friday, November 21, 2014

TGIFF: Quick 'N Easy Potholders

I needed a quick break from working on my Garden Party quilt, so I whipped up a couple of really quick and easy potholders for Christmas gifts for co-workers :)

I was searching for a pattern for something that wouldn't take too long, would be relatively inexpensive, and creative to do for the gal's at work.  Countless websites later, I finally found the Quilt Expressions blog and fell in love with their tutorial for some potholder gifts.

Armed with coupons, I headed off to JoAnn's last Saturday and rummaged around the last remaining bits of Christmas fabric they had.... they were pretty picked clean!  Grabbed some pairs of fabric and a couple of yards of Insul-Bright, and I was on my merry way.

Before I could get started though, I was kinda forced into cleaning up my craft room.  Had a bit of an avalanche of shopping bags that were piled up in the corer of materials for gifts as well as some additions to my stash.  Took about 2 hours, but I got it all organized and put away.

I ended up re-folding all the fabric from JoAnn's before attempting to put it away.  I really loathe when they fold up the cuts, especially when I'm waited on by this young guy that works there.  He practically just rolls it up in a ball and shoves it in a bag :-(  Drives me NUTS!  Especially when now it's extremely wrinkled and not only needs to be re-folded, but also pressed even before I'm ready to use it.  Ah well, it's done and my room is back to being all nice and organized :-)

Without further ado, I give you the first of many (17 total) Christmas pot holders....

Christmas Potholders details:
I did as the tutorial instructed and attached the binding to the back and then pulled over to the front and machine quilted it together.  I'm not quite sure how I feel about that.  One one hand, it would be much easier to do and 10x quicker, but I'm not liking the way it looks when finished.  Thankfully, I've got a million more to make, so room for more trial and error.

Hope everyone is having a fabulous Friday!

Linking back to Finish It Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts , TGIFF at What a Hoot!, Can I Get a Whoop Whoop? over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, and Link-A-Finish Friday at Richard & Tanya Quilts

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Decisions, Decisions

Well, the Garden Party quilt is well underway. After 2 hours of playing with the layout last Friday night, I think I finally got it!

Attempt #1 - REALLY not liking it yet
I guess I didn't plan this one out properly and I REALLY struggled with how to get it evenly balanced between lights and darks. 5 tries later... I found one I thought worked so I just bit the bullet and went with it. 

Attempt #5 - Went with it and it's all pieced and ready to go
Got the "inner quilt" done and added the borders.  So... funny story...

When I was getting it all laid out Friday night, I realized I was short quite a few cornerstones and like 21 posts! Couldn't figure if I couldn't count or if the directions had the wrong numbers on it. Anywho, got it all pieced together and couldn't for the life of me figure out why I was 5" bigger in each direction than it was supposed to be. Yea, I added extra sashing and cornerstones around the WHOLE quilt when it was supposed to be just on the inside (does that make sense?). Added the first white border before I figured it out. I just rolled with it, adjusting the pieced border accordingly. Instead of adding a 2 1/2" white border around the whole thing, I cut it down to 1 1/2" instead... Too much white.

After all the mishaps with this quilt, I was so thankful to get the top done and this baby basted on Sunday :-)

I've spent the past few nights working on the quilting, and I'm planning on getting it wrapped up this weekend, permitting nothing comes up ;-)

I also managed to get a finished project done this week, so make sure to check back tomorrow and check it out!

Hope everyone is having a terrific Thursday!

I Quilt @ Pretty BobbinsMy Quilt Infatuation

Linking back to Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation and I Quilt Thursdays at Pretty Bobbins.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Finish Friday: Busy Little Christmas Elf

Brace yourselves... this is gonna be another long one!!!  Two big projects to share, plus a little one for fun.  I've been a busy little Christmas elf lately... so I've got plenty to share :D

1. Downton Abbey Yellow Brick Road Quilt

This one is a Christmas gift for my grandma.  I had originally intended on giving it to her back when she was here in Ohio and in the nursing home, but she went home too fast and I didn't have a chance to finish it in time.  I actually got the top done way back at the beginning of September and started the FMQ on it.  It ended up taking a bit of a back seat to a couple of impromptu projects, but then I finally cracked down and finished it!  It's actually been done for a while, I just haven't had the chance (or decent weather outside) lately to get it photographed.  Without further ado... here are the details for this one:

Downton Abbey Yellow Brick Road Quilt Details:
This was the first project I've ever done FMQ on!  I think that's why it took a bit longer to do.  FMQ is more time consuming, plus I was so scared I was going to mess it up that I kept putting off working on it.  Sucked it up and did it.  Done, washed, and ready to wrap!

Easy Jelly Roll Quilt in 6 Sizes

Along with the layer cake I bought way back when, on one of my first orders from Missouri Star, that I used on the Lattice Quilt, I picked up this jelly roll to do a quilt for Aunt #2 for Christmas.   I picked a real simple pattern for this one... for a couple of reasons.  1) I don't have much time so I couldn't make it too fancy or I'd never finish it, and 2) my aunt isn't a "flashy" kinda gal.  This pattern and fabric fit the bill perfectly!  

This really IS an easy jelly roll quilt!  once the strips were sewn together and then cut down into blocks, the top only took 3 evenings after work to complete!  No border and just straight-line, echo stitch quilting made this one a really quick, yet pretty quilt.

Easy Jelly Roll Quilt in 6 Sizes (Lap Size):
All-in-all, it's been a very productive couple of weeks!  So happy to be able to check TWO gifts off the Christmas list.  4 down.... 5 to go!  Fortunately, 4 of the last 5 are rag quilts and shouldn't take too long... especially when I can recruit Hubby into helping me with snipping the seams :D

Oh, and I finished up a quick little project too!

I made a cute little Elf hat for my niece, Miss L.  I made the 12-24 month size, but it seems awfully big!  I may make another one in the 0-6 month size and see how that one looks.  If this one is too big, I can always give it to Hubby's DJ-ing partner's 8 year-old daughter :D

Lil' Elf Hat details:
This came out so stinking cute (plus I have a ton of yarn leftover) that I'm putting these on "the list" for the rest of "our kids" for Christmas next year! The Clover Pom-Pom makers are AWESOME and made making the pom-pom for the hat so quick and easy!  There are a ton of YouTube videos showing how to use them, and instead of just wrapping one color, I used all three at the same time.  Made a really cute, mulit-colored one :D

Well, that's it for my Friday!  Busy, busy, busy... and getting busier by the day!  Hope everyone has a fabulous Friday and a wonderful weekend!

Linking back to Finish It Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts , TGIFF at Quilt Matters, Can I Get a Whoop Whoop? over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, and Link-A-Finish Friday at Richard & Tanya Quilts

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Garden Party

So glad to be able to share with you a WIP this week!  I've been busy, chugging along on my Christmas gifts, but for whatever reason I keep forgetting to take photos, blog, etc.  I'm sorry :(  I hope you don't think I've been neglecting you! 

I wrapped up Christmas gift #4 last week (#3 of 3 going to family in PA) and couldn't wait to get started on the next one.  I found this gorgeous line over at Missouri Star and it just had Hubby's grandma's name written all over it!

The line is Lagoon by Paintbrush Studio.  I just fell in love with it!  I've also had the Garden Party quilt on my "bucket list" of patterns I want to do, so I decided to pair this fabric with that pattern, and VOILA!  Christmas gift for Gram!

Instead of 3 charm packs like the pattern calls for, I got a layer cake (a Daily Deal over on Missouri Star I think).  Just cut the 10" layer cake into 5" charms :) For the solids, I got some Bella Solids - White Bleached yardage for the sashing and borders.  240 - 1 1/2" squares to cut... and that was just for the main blocks.  Add to that another 96 needed for the border.... that was A LOT of cutting!  Lol

Sorry about the crummy lighting!  I've got lousy light in my craft room, especially after dark... so it's kinda hard to get decent pictures.
Spent the night on Sunday getting all the blocks "snowballed," and then the past couple of nights getting them trimmed and pressed.  Couldn't wait to see how it was going to look, so I quickly put together one of the blocks.  LOVE IT!!!  I really can't wait to get this one done and ready to go under the tree for Christmas :D

Sew Fresh Quilts

Linking back to Freshly Pieced's WIP Wednesday and Sew Fresh Quilts' Let's Bee Social

Monday, November 10, 2014

Make-A-List Monday: 11/10/14

Crikey!  October completely got away from me, and it seems like November is too!  I've been productive, just haven't had the chance to write it all down.  Lol.  Thought with there being only 44 DAYS until Christmas... I really needed to put my To-Do list together to help me stay on track so I can get everything done.

The list is a "comprehensive" one, including EVERYTHING that I need to do... not just Christmas.  The saddest part of this is that about 98% of the projects on this list have been completely shopped for... just need to get done.  That's a LOT of stash!!! 

I managed to get one more of the Christmas gifts checked off the list this weekend, but there are still 5 left that are "Must Do's."  Need to keep to my "schedule" I put together and get stuff done. 

Anywho.... here's my Make-A-List Monday for this week....

  • Blog posts of finished projects - Got pictures taken over the weekend, just need to write everything up for ya'll :-)  Look for these posts later this week!
  • FINISH editing of wedding photos  - I desperately need to finish the editing on the photos from a wedding I shot in July!  I've got them about 95% done, with all the important portraits done... just have to finish up the pre-wedding photos and some of the reception photos and they'll be done.  The bride was happy with what I've given her so far, so these last few are just extras... but I need to get this project off my plate!
  • Continue working on the Garden Party Quilt - I started working on this one over the past week or so, getting everything cut and the squares snowballed.  I'm hoping to get all the 4-patch blocks done this week so by the weekend I can start assembling the top.
I'm keeping it simple this week, mainly so that it's not so overwhelming that I fall behind so quickly.  If I can get more done, I will... but for now this is a start.

Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend, and have a wonderful week to come!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Countdown To Christmas

Well, as of today we are "officially" 56 days away from Christmas.  I don't know about you, but that kinda freaks me out.  Just thinking about everything that I want to do/need to do before then is giving me a bit of anxiety.  Lol.

I decided back in the beginning of the summer that I wanted to do quilts for my two aunts and my grandma.  I took the first step and bought everything that I needed.... but then the stuff sat.  Why it took me until August to get started on these I'll never know.  I honestly thought, even in August, that I would have plenty of time to get them all done.  Well, the first one took a little longer than I had anticipated, the second one (which I'll be sharing on Friday) took even longer, and now I'm working on the third one... trying to get it done relatively quickly (thankfully it's an EASY pattern) but still nicely.

Quilt Top Ready To Go!

For this third quilt, I decided to do the Easy Jelly Roll Quilt (6-sizes) that I found on Craftsy.  I ordered everything I needed from Missouri Star, and got started on it about a week and a half ago. Finished up the top last night, and it's ready to go!  Planning on getting it basted and quilted by the end of this weekend so I'll have another Christmas gift checked off the list!

Sew Fresh Quilts

Linking back to Freshly Pieced's WIP Wednesday and Sew Fresh Quilts' Let's Bee Social

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Checking In and Catching Up

Holy cow!!! It's been a minute since I've posted :(  So sorry about that!!  Life has just been absolutely CRAZY lately and I've barely had time to sleep let alone anything else.  I had about three weeks where I was battling a nasty sinus infection, the flu, and overall feeling like a bulldozer hit me.  It was a struggle to go to work, let alone work on anything productive.  In the meantime, housework, laundry, grocery shopping, etc. kinda took a back seat and I got really backed up (I mean, on the verge of just buying new clothes instead of doing laundry and taking a black garbage bag to the house and pitching anything I don't know what to do with).

After about 2 1/2 weeks, I slowly started getting my energy back.  Since then, I have been very, VERY busy getting Mt. Laundry done, cleaning up the pigsty of a house, and getting some food in the house.... along with spending as much time in my craft room as possible trying to work on Christmas gifts, along with a bunch of little projects that have come up.

So, without further ado.... here's a recap of what I've been up to (WARNING: REALLY LONG POST AHEAD!!!):

1. Puppy Shower Gifts

I finished up the Bones Quilt I was working on for my girlfriend's "puppy shower," and I also managed to whip up a self-binding receiving blanket with some adorable doggie flannel I found at JoAnn's.

Bones Quilt Project Details:

 Self-Binding Receiving Blanket Details:

  • Started: September 26, 2014     Finished: September 26, 2014
  • Pattern: Self-Binding Receiving Blanket from Missouri Star
  • Fabrics: Dog-Themed Snuggle Flannel and Hot-Pink Snuggle Flannel from JoAnn's
  • Thread: Coats & Clark - White All-Purpose Thread (construction stitching), Coats & Clark - Hot Pink (Top Stitching)
  • Batting: None

2.  Fall Friendship Braid Table Runner (For My Mom)

Ever since I saw the video tutorial that Missouri Star did on their Friendship Braid/Binding Tool Table Runner, it's been on my "To-Do" list.  Snagged up a fall-themed Jelly Roll from Missouri Star and got to work.  I even managed to so some free-motion quilting on it for practice.  Didn't turn out perfect, but definitely better than the first few times I practiced.

Friendship Braid/Binding Tool Table Runner Details:

3. Mini-Cornhole Bean Bags

Hubby has a DJ-in company and he's been looking for new games to play while they're dj-ing at a local bar.  I dragged him to Pat Catan's (a local craft store) a few weeks back looking for some yarn and we stumbled upon some finish-them-yourself Mini Cornhole Boards (they're approx 12" square).  For those of you who aren't familiar with Cornhole, here's all the info.  We bought the boards and some spray paint, but couldn't find any of the bean bags to go with it.  This is when it pays to have a crafty wife.... I can make them :)  I got four cheapie bandana's (two of each color in their company colors) and a couple bags of bean bag filler.  I cut the bandanas into 4" squares, sewed them using a 1/2" seam allowance on three sides, filled up the bag with beans (weighed each bag so they were all the same), and then sewed the opening shut using my machine.  Easy peasy!  I ended up making eight bags of each color, plus I still had two bandanas left so I made little draw-string carrying bags for them using a tutorial from The Crafting Gemini on YouTube.  Not much to them, and got them all done in one night.... kinda impressed Hubby with that one ;-)

I really didn't do too much of the board with the exception of cutting the logo out with vinyl on my Silhouette Cameo.  Hubby put a couple base coats of neon orange and then I applied the vinyl.

Sorry about the shadow of my arm!!! Lol.  Photo was taken in my garage

Once the vinyl was on, Hubby painted over the whole thing with black glitter spray paint.  Once it was dry, all we had to do was remove the vinyl and.... VOILA!

After a couple of coats of crystal clear top coat, they are ready to go :-)

4. Yellow Brick Road Quilt (for my Grandma for Christmas)

"Technically" this one is done, just only have a pic of it ready to be hand-bound.  I actually finished it up a few weeks ago and it's been washed.... just haven't had a good day to take it outside for it's "formal photo shoot."  Hoping I can get a decent pic of the completed quilt, and maybe I'll even be able to get it posted for this week's Finish It Friday!

5. Knitting Project: Baby Blanket

Ok, so this isn't a quilting project, or a finished project.... but it is one of the few UFO's in my knitting queue.  I've had this yarn for a while and wanted to make a baby blanket with it.  Don't have a baby yet to give it to, but it's working up real quick and it'll be nice to have in my gift stash for the future :-)

6. Halloween Costume

My adorable niece, Miss L, turned the big ONE back on Oct 15th.  My sister and BIL threw an awesome Halloween-themed, costume birthday party for her.  Of course, I was stumped for an idea.  Then it dawned on me... I'm going to be bringing my camera anyways, so I might as well go as a photographer.  Well, that idea eventually turned into a "Paparazzi" idea.  Got a cheapie black hoodie from Wally World and a roll of Cricut brand Pink Glitter Iron-On Vinyl.  I used my Silhouette Cameo again to cut the camera and words out of the vinyl and then just ironed it on.  Came out really cute, and it was a REALLY comfy costume considering it was like 50 degrees and raining the day of the party. 

7. Walking Dead Shirt (for Hubby)

Hubby loved his Comic Book shirt so much that I promised I would make him lots more.  When I saw an email from JoAnn's about this Walking Dead Fabric, I just knew he NEEDED a shirt!  He is DJ-ing a party on the 1st that is a "Zombie Theme" party, so this shirt will be perfect for him to wear :-)  With this being the 4th shirt I've made from this pattern... I'm getting pretty good at it.  Lol

Walking Dead Shirt Details:
  • Started: October 24, 2014     Finished: October 25, 2014
  • Pattern:  McCall's M2149
  • Fabric: Walking Dead Cotton from JoAnn's
  • Notions: 4 - 3/4" Black Buttons
  • Thread: Coats & Clark - Black All-Purpose Thread
Well..... that about sums up the past couple of weeks.  I've got a couple more little projects I'm working on, but I haven't had a chance to get pictures taken yet.  I've got a big WIP quilt that I'll be posting tomorrow, and then the big finish on my Yellow Brick Road quilt on Friday.  Going to be a busy couple of days, but I'm loving it!

Linking up to Linky Tuesday at Freemotion by the River and Fabric Tuesday at A Quilt Story.

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