‘Finish it’ February

February 24th, 2015

After years of focusing on the same quilt, I’m happy to say that there are already 8 projects on my WIP list for 2015, including a sampler. Hmm… It’s a good thing that the annual Spring retreat is this month. I might just have time to finish a couple quilts.

First up: Pistachio Happiness
I’ve managed to piece this using almost all the fabric, however it’s just shy of a twin. I guess I’m needing a border after all. Luckily, the purple-violet Kona solid is a great balance for all that minty green.

Next: Improv Charity Blocks from Cheryl Arkison’s workshops
N, My partner in crime & I only need to make 3 more 15″ blocks to complete to top.

Last, but not least: Orchid Birdy Wheels
This is the quilt I decided to use the 2014 Pantone Color-of-the-year, Radiant Orchid. I assembled two 24″ blocks last year and think I want 9 or 12 total.

Happiness Rocks

February 13th, 2015

My weekends have been a blur this year and I’ve spent much of my time being wonderfully creative: One retreat spent figuring out whether digital photo album design is my direction, another, helping friends bottle a barrel of wine. 2015HappyBottling
However, last weekend, I created stuff!

My client requested colorful cards for her annual birthday set. I designed them with a thoughtful stamp and silk flowers. My process was to cut the paper and stamp, then coordinate flowers and assemble, finishing with a blingy brad for sparkle. By the time I’d finished 50, I had a vibrant garden on my desk!
2015HappyBdayCard 2015HappyBdayCards

Next up: sewing!
At a workshop with Joe the quilter last year, learned a fun technique for assembling 6″ blocks. I zipped together a bunch of them, but didn’t make the second cut and promptly set them aside. Fast forward…

When I pulled it out again, I realized that there really wasn’t much fabric left and I should just make as many blocks as I could. Below, I have the 5″, 4″, 2″ and 1″ strips waiting along the left side while chain piecing the 3″ pairs. 2015HappinessBlocksI totally forgot about making another round of ‘block strips’ and cutting again. Oh well, I’ll blame that on hot-from-the-oven brownies! ;)2015HappinessSetup
Once I began assembling this quilt, I liked the fact that only the corners had to match up. It took me a little time to double check, but I think it looks fun. Like purple pistachio ice cream!2015HappinessLayout

Haven’t been getting much done lately…

February 4th, 2015

“A moment of your time, fair lady. Would you happen to have a lap you might share? Yes? Oh fabulous! And so comfy! And are you very busy? I could use a good rub… oh, brilliant!” purrrrrrrrrrrr…DistractionFeb42015

He doesn’t make requests very often and I can always sew a little later…

Color me a rainbow

January 20th, 2015

I’ve been playing with paint recently.
2015ColorBook6Nothing specific yet. Just building color washes with fluid acrylics.

Also, I need to find a different purple. While I liked the single wash, after 3-4 layers, Quinacridone Violet came out more like, hmm… well, a touch redder than the 2015 Pantone color of the year!

2015ColorBookQVwash 2015ColorBookQVfull

One Thousands Blessings

January 9th, 2015

Some of my favorite gifts have been ‘action’ gifts. You know, the kind where you are invited to experience as opposed to simply get some thing. This year, that gift was in the form of a mega pad of Origami papers from my friend, F, who is also making 1K cranes. Our plan is to make 3 each day, finishing around Thanksgiving. Welcome to the year of One Thousand Cranes!2015CranesJan1

I’ve read that “the crane is a powerful symbol for loyalty, nobility, and beauty. According to Japanese tradition, anyone with the patience and commitment to fold 1,000 paper cranes will be granted their most desired wish, because they have exhibited the cranes’ loyalty and recreated their beauty.”2015CranesJan2

My most desired wish is under wraps until the end of this journey. However, one of the fun additions we are implementing as each crane is folded: think of a person and all the blessings they have brought into our life. Heavens! Do I even know a thousand people?!?2015CranesJan3

Ah, well… Crossing that bridge when I come to it. For now, this is a physical reminder of how blessed my life truly is because of those I’ve met over the years.

UPDATE: 1/26
After a few weeks of folding cranes from the pre-cut 6″ papers, it occurred to me that I should try my hand at making the 3″ version. Honestly, I wasn’t sure I could make the folds, but here is my first one, perching on my keyboard for scale.2015CranesJan4

Over the weekend I made a few more and think I like this size better. :-)2015CranesJan5

And so begins 2015

January 1st, 2015

Happy Merry New 2015!
It’s really been a great year, albeit I’ve felt trampled by 2014 on occasion rather than riding high. I’m still ever so grateful.

My Kreativity level has increased tenfold and I have many beautifully crafted items to show for my efforts. You see, last year, I challenged myself to make a list. Not just any list, mind you, a Kreativity List for Quilty Projects! 2014QuiltyList
With the completion of my Heart Quilt, I now had freedom to expand my creative focus beyond handmade cards. Starting with blocks I made during two workshops and two projects from my MQG from 2013, my WIPs (works-in-progress) list steadily grew from just 4 projects with the help of my Quilty friends. Last week, I topped my list with 4 gifts for my nieces & nephews (finished all but 1!) to make it 24 projects in 2014! Many have been posted here and I’m pleased to count 15 off the 2014 list as complete. Yay!

Gifts made, Gifts loved!

December 30th, 2014

Ah, this Holiday Season has been filled with so many gifts lovingly made!

Potholders (square & chicken), baby quilts, Elsa capes, Baby Monkey clothes and one DIY project for my nephew…

Let’s start with one of my few UFO’s from 2012.

I just didn’t know what to do with these fabulous squares. They didn’t speak to me as a quilt, or even as pillows, so I shelved them. Last year, I had a brilliant idea to make them into potholders but ran out of time. This year, determination for gifting them even spurred me to try machine quilting again. How wonderful small projects are!

2014CurvePerfectProcessSince I gifted them to 2014CurvePerfectPotholdersfour friends, I also got to turn gift-giving into a game. Once opened, they had to match up the squares for the win!

Hee! Hee!

 

Just a small project…

December 8th, 2014

It’s not really a surprise. I’ve known about her pregnancy for the past six months. I just wasn’t thinking that I would make anything…and then I had second thoughts. It might be nice to make a baby blanket. You know, it’s a small project and I seem to be able to finish smallish projects these days. So, why not! It’s only a couple weeks before Christmas. I’m not busy! Heh.

Here’s my starting fabric:2014BabyQuiltFabric

One, two, three… Go!

Update, Dec 15th: It’s taken me a week to actually start this quilt. Nevertheless, I spent the afternoon cutting out the 9” squares and then again diagonally at the 3” to 6” in order to make the tessellating windmill blocks.

Wow! This inspires me for another quilt… next year. ;-)2014BabyQuiltCut

Once I laid out the pattern, the piecing went quickly, squares then rows. Only the remaining purple fabric is large enough to wrap around for backing and binding. 2014BabyQuiltBindUnfortunately, it takes another week to have time to quilt it, but I’m able to finish the binding in time to wrap and place under the tree. 2014BabyQuiltZ12014BabyQuiltZ3

2014BabyQuiltBlock

Secret Chicken

December 4th, 2014

This holiday, I again signed up for the Year End Secret Swap-a-ganza gift exchange for my BAMQG. Unlike other deadlines, I created my little quilty work of art THREE DAYS in advance!

The request for a potholder for a teapot handle was pretty specific. There was only one problem. I didn’t know what that would look like! I searched the web for some clue as to what I needed to make, to no avail. Then it hit me, why not make a chicken?

A what…? Let me explain. I’d received a pair of chicken potholders several years ago and was smart enough to ask for the pattern, even though I wasn’t inspired to make them just then. So I looked through my project box and found it right away. Bingo! Time to choose some fun fabric. Something colorful, like this purple and teal batik fit the bill.

2014SecretChixA2014SecretChixBAfter reading all the directions, I carefully traced & cut out each piece. Before sewing, I reread directions, choosing to alter the design without the binding.

Everything came together surprisingly fast. Was it my ‘magic’ purple pen or rereading directions that brought success? One never knows.

2014SecretChixCDo you think chicken potholders might be the trend for well-dressed teapots across the globe in 2015? Perhaps!

There’s enough fabric left to make one to roost on my own teapot. Let’s see if I have time to hunt up a flock!

Fifth Wheel

November 20th, 2014

Ah, my GGirls have surpassed my expectations!

2014GGwheelSC2014GGwheelNC2014GGwheelEL2014GGwheelDWLast night, I was presented with finished blocks from MY 2014 Carpenter’s Wheel group project. And I have to say, Ladies, these are so wonderful. Each block is precious to me!

Now I just need to decide assembly (table runner or square) and post the finished piece.

 

Grateful, Ladies, ever so grateful!