I actually have two (ok, a half dozen) WIP this week.
We will be moving some time next year and I want everyone to have a new quilt by the time we move. Alex is done, so I thought I’d do something easy for Zoe in between the larger Hazel and master bedroom quilt. This is Elizabeth Hartman’s Roller Rink pattern from her Modern Patchwork book. I already did most of the cutting for it when Ms. Viking went into the shop in July.
I’m going for a rainbow….but….do I go left to right in the colors all the way across? I’m going to need, for just numbers of blocks, more colors one way or another than there are in the rainbow…should I put a white at the top and a gray at the end?
My photos are so dang blurry when I take them at night. Boo.
Also, I don’t have nearly as much orange in my stash as I would have thought, but I will say, doing a rainbow of colors really makes you go through what you have!!! I have a thorough understanding of my stash and have been purging quite a bit. Fall cleaning!
That photo is better. I’m using Robert Kaufman yarn dyed linen in Flax with a Kona white to keep it neutral. I think in Hartman’s book she used a taupe/tan and white for the scrappy sample and it seemed better than gray for a girl’s baby quilt to me.
I have about eight pairs now, with about four more to go. Do I fill in here and there with one color in particular or begin and end with ‘cloud’ colors?
I was that kid with the homemade Little House on the Prairie dresses in calico, complete with eyelet pinafores and even a couple bonnets. It was the late 70s/early 80s. My mom sent me to school with granola bars and whole wheat, apple butter sandwiches in my Holly Hobbie lunch pail. I had whole, raw milk in my thermos and thought the kids with weird hockey pucks wrapped in aluminum foil were the odd ones.
I’ve been given a lot of vintage calico (wait, does that make me vintage?), and while I love it, it has a huge place in my heart, it has been difficult deciding what to do with it.
I don’t want to cut it up into tiny pieces where I can’t quite appreciate the field of calico yardage, and I don’t want to make it into little dresses only to be discarded as the girls grow….but the idea of a traditional patterned quilt AND traditional fabric doesn’t thrill me either. That’s a lot of work to be back at tiny pieces.
On the other hand, hanging on to fabric creates this….blockage, for lack of a better term. That’s sounds grossly gastrointestinal, but it’s true. Having something like 15 accumulative yards of vintage calicoes clogging up my stash and my ability to move forward. I can’t just let it sit there and rot. I can’t justify buying more fabric and working around this pile, over and over. There’s a mental white elephant in the room. Part of my brain is continually dedicated to “what am I going to do with that fabric” even while I’m working on something else.
So….enter the picnic quilt. These are well made fabrics and my family is in need of a “laying out in the grass” quilt. Truth be told, I’m sure the moment it shows any wear on it whatsoever, it will be retired to a couch, but a decision has been made that I’m happy with.
I took some of it, and sewed it into large, 6″ wide by about 40″ long strips, and sewed the 2 halves together.
It has this Provencal, country bumpkin thing going on. There’s a smidge of Robert Kaufman cotton/linen denim in there.
The back has quadrants of large yardage split by some leftover strips. It’s running about a queen size.
Now that I’ve finished up Alex’s quilt, I can baste this and zip it together. I’m thinking simple line quilting – keep it simple.
I’m happy with my decision, and even more so, I’m happy with that little nagging feeling being gone. I don’t have to give up my calicoes. I wonder if I can find some audiobooks of Laura Ingalls Wilder to make the family listen too while I quilt it. Oh, or even better, The Firefox series.
A couple shots of NASCAR Zoe, testing the new track in the living room….she thought she was just being hilarious.
That time of relief, pride and all that jazz that exists before the next project, is here. That’s right. I took the quilt to a pub to photograph it. That is what we do in Portland. My Art Director, there to the right, made sure her daddy was taking the photos correctly and made sure I was holding it straight.
It has been washed and dried already (and slept with) successfully.
Here’s the back.
It was a completely unplanned quilt all the way through the process, and I don’t think I could have planned it better. Most importantly, Alex is happy with it. He says, “It’s super comfy.” Sweet. That, and he’s kicked all other blankets aside in favor of his new quilt, is all we can hope for at the end of the day – actions are worth a thousand words.
It’s quilted on a big “+” down the middle and then the quadrants echoed out from that. I was a bit worried with the wonky blocks on the back that I might get some puckering even with a walking foot and Aurifil 50 wt (in Slate gray), but nada. I’m a happy mommy.
Here’s some of the up-close business if you’re interested, complete with crinkly-after-wash-goodness.
and a few of the Artistic Director doing exactly what you hope a child will do with a quilt…marvel at all the fun fabrics (I rub my hands together and say, “yes, yes, there will be an apprentice….”).
So, that was a big chunk of my mid-to-late August sewing!
Details – let’s see. There’s some Chicopee in there, some Denyse Schmidt, some Zen Chic, some Birch Organic, some Moda – the gray slate is all Moda solid, there’s some real, first print 1995 script-text fabric courtesy of my most amazing, generous mother (score!), that big fruit was something I got a Joann’s – I think it’s their knock-off of Alexander Henry but it’s nicer feeling than their usual stuff…I dig it. What else, there’s some real Alexander Henry in there and some Red Rooster I think…and some scraps from Boersma’s and…scraps from Joann’s and whatnot. I tried out some Gutermann 50 wt while piecing it…and my machine’s take-up lever did NOT like it. I used Aurifil 50 wt in slate for quilting and had no issues the entire time. For the hand-binding, I used a yellow Gutermann in 40 wt that worked out great – hardly any curling/knotting. All thread is 100% cotton.
I have 2 more quilts to show you soon, er, in-progress quilts, and some shhhhhh secret pattern testing to do.
Awesome August sorta turned into Argh August. Just life stuff has me a bit off. I planned on going to the PMQG August meeting and being all social and seeing My People, but life had other plans.
So be it.
I also had plans to make my A is for Alex work into pillows but he insisted on a quilt. Can’t turn down that request!
So I spent my time lurking on Instagram and online, watching the PMQG Meet Up from my sewing machine and iPad. As of last night, I got it pieced, quilted and 1/2 of the binding on. I filled a lot of it in with coordinating wonky stars that was the BOM for PMQG in July….it is just so easy to just go with a pattern I was already in the zone with and it ended up working great for this quilt.
I accidentally sliced the binding at 2 inches instead of giving myself that extra quarter inch. So….I’ll be using pins and Hulk like finger strength to hand bind the back this week.
Makes for really tight corners!
I have a bit leftover that I’ll use up in another quilt I have pieced and ready to baste….if I don’t go too crazy sewing this on!
Short but sweet post. Getting back into the swing of things. Hoping to hit the September PMQG with a bit less “argh” and more “social butterfly.”
Argh. What is it about not posting for awhile that perpetuates this chasm of meh? I have little stuffs to post but it’s been so long that they seem not worthy.
And work. Work keeps getting in the way. It’s like they want me to do stuff for my paycheck and health insurance. So, I work. It can be intense at times and it just burns up any ambition I have for anything else. What a Funk that is.
I have some side ‘work’ to do….my work history is in design for print, mostly…so the lovely ladies at Sew, Mama, Sew gave me an opportunity to work on some stuff for them but graphic design is something you need to sit down and get your head into….then I’m back at finding the time to do it. Funk. I’m taking some days off soon. Work gives me serious burn-out, so I’m happy to have that PTO benefit! You know, to work on other stuff.
There’s also this matter of gifted fabric. Sometimes getting a haul of fabric from someone’s grandma’s basement is great. Sometimes, it’s a major fail. I try to be really picky about taking in items as I have limited space and time, so this last time I only took a few patterns and knits…I wear and make clothes for the kids mostly in knits. Knits will get used. Even funky knits. Those kind that are so ugly that they’re kinda cute and a few practical knits.
I’m soooo glad that when I washed them I didn’t mix in too many of our regular clothes because HOLY KEROSENE BATMAN. These things must have been sitting next to an oil tank or kerosene lamp or an arsonist…they smelled so bad after a wash and dry I gagged. I had to rewash (read: douse with BioKleen bac-out and pray a LOT) some clothes that did get mixed in with the ‘safe’ colors…I’m so glad that worked but there’s no way I’m risking using the funky fabric. Funky nasty flammable. I think the CPSC might frown slightly. Flammable children = not good.
I took a few patterns – partially for the cute factor, but I had to leave most of them. At the end of the day, how many 50s cocktail dresses am I going to make and/or wear? My 20s are long gone (thankfully) and I already did my vintage clothing phase. I sold my 40s wool gabardine collection and my 50s cocktail dresses are hopefully being trounced around Portland by someone who can do them justice. Give me my jeans and a comfy top that can withstand my life as it is now and isn’t going to make me shave or wear heels every day. FTS. I’m too old and never did play well at being high maintenance.
However, this could be practical. It’s a wrap dress! That’s the definition of practical for dresses.
And another back-wrap style with a potato sack style that reminds me of Anneliese. I should send it to her so she can have matchy-matchy with her daughters. That might be weird…
I could not resist this pinafore/dress combo. You just know it was designed with some evil, slippery poly sheer crap, but dang, it’s such a cute drawing…
I doubt I’ll ever make them. Or these….but the cute won me over…
Vintage patterns….so cute.
I took a few knit undergarment patterns mostly out of curiosity.
And I’m a sucker for 70s hooker aesthetic…
I wish this shop was still open in Lake Oswego. Not that it could get me to go to Lake Oswego, but I’d pretend.
So, yeah. That’s been happening. Like I said, I have a few days off and a few things in the works…
OHOHOH, and a Portland Modern Quilt Guild picnic tomorrow. Yeah. I’m excited about that. I wasn’t sure I was going when it was announced due to some other family stuff, so I didn’t sign up for the bag swap. #FAIL. But I’m excited to go anyway. I’m going to walk up to ladies I don’t know and say, “Will you be my friend?” That will work out great.
My oldest turned 18 and graduated high school. That’s been picking away at me – only for the most selfish emotional reasons. He’s fine. He’s more than fine. He’s great. I couldn’t ask for better. His future plans are solid and I’m beyond proud of him. I just can’t help but want to take him trick-or-treating more, hold him more, watch him go down the slide….all those things that are done and have been done for some time, but it’s so final now.
I didn’t expect to mourn my child’s successful completion of childhood.
It’s complicated. I don’t know if you feel this with every child, just your first or just when you have them so young that perhaps you didn’t appreciate what it was you had.
There’s no one like him in the world. He’s amazing. He’s brilliant. He’s funny. He thinks for himself….I love that. His opinions are his own. He listens, processes and decides things for himself. What could be more successful than that?
He will always be my baby. My 9 1/2 lbs, 2 feet long, 2 weeks past due ginormous baby.
I didn’t scan of his baby photos for this….this is sort of a word vomit more for me to get out than anything planned….it would be just more photos of him being adorable with bugs, cats, photo-bombing…..he’s a photo-bombing master.
Seriously. Master. Photo. Bomber. You can’t even compete.
And he’s all grown up. He leaves this fall. I can’t tuck him in to bed or read to him or tell him to eat his dinner…I can’t go back and do it more or less than I did….you think 18 years is soooo far away, that you have so much time.