Thursday, June 4, 2009

Quilt Guilds

Tuesday night I attended my first meeting of the Garland Quilt Guild. The speaker was Margaret Bucklew. Although I do not applique I found her work fascinating and she told a lot of funny stories. She does Portraits in fabric. Here she is with 2 of her works.
This is a quilt she did that was highlighted on the show Texas, Country Reporter. She told us the story of meeting this soldier and I wish I'd taken better notes. Sorry about the bag being in the way.
When you look at this up close you can see the reflection of a flag in the sunglasses that he is wearing. She talked about how to choose just the right colors and I learned a LOT from her on values and shading. She brought in her computer and showed us how she turns a color picture into black & white and then plays with the values until she gets everything just right.

After her lecture there was Show & Tell and I showed off Leslie's Quilt. Here I am on the right with the Guild President, Valerie Hubbard, on the left.
Helle hasn't finished the binding yet, but it earned me an extra chance in the Door prize drawings. You get 1 chance just for showing up and 1 chance for bringing a Show & Tell. It seemed like there were at least 20 door prizes and maybe 60-75 members there

There were several people that I knew and I had such a good time that I joined. I picked up the BOM for next month- Diamond Star but they are asking for it to be done in Red CW or Blue CW on Cream CW -none of which I have but I think I can get some large scraps from a good online friend.

They are also doing a couple of drives for some charity quilts and I'm thinking about giving a few things for those.

I'm excited to get involved! I feel even more motivated!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

June Goals

I'm keeping it fairly simple this month as to not get too overwhelmed.

Quilty Goals :

  • finish the binding on the charity quilt

  • finish making the pink/brown/cream rail fence

  • bind the Blue & White quilt

  • Make huge strides on the "Lot O' Hearts" quilt

  • Make at least 6 blocks towards my secret project.

It may sound like a lot but it's really not. Notice I didn't say "Finish" the Lot O' Hearts quilt. :)

Non-Quilty Goals:

  • Lose 10 pounds

  • Read at least 1 book that isn't Quilting related. Last Saturday I made a trip to Half Price Books and picked up a $3 copy of this

I am finding it very interesting. It's been a very long time since I've read anything Non-fiction.

  • Clean out my car and get it washed!

That's it. I can do it! I think I can...I think I can...I think I can...

Current Projects

Here are a couple of things I've been working on lately.
I have been taking my scraps and doing this

and this
to make blocks like this

and Saturday after I got home from "Sit & Sew" I decided to take a whole bunch of these
6 inch Rail Fences I had from a block swap

and make them into a top. It isn't quite finished yet.
I have 6 of 12 rows put together.

My bad wrist has hurt a little bit the last few days so I haven't finished the binding on the charity quilt just yet. I know there is no real rush but I want to get it done before I start binding something else. I feel I need more practice.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Learning something new

I really love our monthly "Sit & Sew" at tirane's house. A chance to get with my BFF's and sew and chat and get some sewing done. The last few months I'd been so tired by the time the Saturday would get here, I felt too tired to lug my sewing machine and stuff over that I just took some scraps and my cutting board and cut. (I still have those baggies organized and they are for projects later this summer.)

This past Saturday I conquered another fear. I learned how to bind by hand! I walked in carrying nothing but a couple of books I owed Beth and tirane wondered where my stuff was to work on. I said "Your gonna teach me how to bind". Several months ago I'd taken some ghastly fabric and made it into a charity quilt and she had quilted it and set it aside. We pulled it out and after a quick lesson I started sewing. Here is a picture of my chubby fingers working away...

When I first started the stitches looked awful, but by the time I got to the middle of the second side, you couldn't even see them. She had to show me how to do the first corner (the one in the picture) but after I did the 2nd corner by myself I sat there with a big smile on my face.

My hands were pretty sore and other things called my name the rest of the weekend, but I'll get that binding finished in the next day or 2 and show you the end result.

I'd been paying her to bind my stuff but now I can do it myself! Well, at least the stuff I can fold over and bind. A lesson on sewing on bindings is still to come.

Why was I so afraid of doing this? I think back to when I first started quilting. I was scared to death of paper piecing. It was several years before I was ready to try it and now I'm addicted to it.

I've been afraid of binding, curved piecing, and applique. I'm not going to let it take another couple of years to get over curved piecing cause there's a pattern I really want to try sometime later this year but I'm still not sure about applique. Maybe if the right pattern called to me.

Are there quilting techniques that you've been or are afraid of? What's stopping YOU?

Stash Report, Week 22

I haven't posted in forever. I am finally getting into my new routine at work though and have been doing some sewing and getting some things done.

Here's an updated report...

Fabric Added this Week: 10 yards
Fabric Added Year to Date: 28.625 yards

Fabric Used this Week: 1 yard and a Whole lot of scraps!
Fabric Used Year to Date: 49 yards

The fabric acquired this week was 10 yards of solid black that tirane was able to get at a great bargain. $3 a yard. We thought it was going to be Kona black, but even though it wasn't, it was still a good enough quality that it was a good deal.

The fabric used this week was actually from 2 weeks ago, to put the borders on the quilt I've made for my co-worker. I've already picked up that quilt back from tirane and my boss, Helle, is going to put the binding on it. Separate post coming about it later this week after it's completely finished but here is a sneak peek.

All of the strips used in the blocks were from the 2 boxes of pink and red scraps that my friend Lynn had sent me.I had dumped them all in this bag. Making Leslie's quilt barely made a dent in the heap so I'm on the lookout for another pattern to use up more of them. Maybe a log cabin? Maybe "Boxy Stars" from Quiltville? Try something challenging that I've been wanting to do and make pineapple blocks? What is your favorite pattern for using 2 1/2 inch strips?

We had our monthly "Sit & Sew" at tirane's house on Saturday and were discussing my stash clean up. Swooze asked me if I'd been buying fabric again. I let out at resounding "NO". It feels really good to say that. I haven't stepped foot into JoAnn's or my LQS in well over a month. I realized I never even went to pick up my BOM kits for May and here it is June 1. The LQS will save them up for me and they will be there when I get them. It's not a project I've been keeping up with on anyway.

I haven't used up as much as I would have liked by this point halfway through the year, but I feel that is changing. I've got several projects I'm currently working on now that involve scraps, but hey, the borders and the backings have to come from somewhere right? And I'm getting a lot better at "shopping my stash" even though there are a lot of neat fabrics out there right now that I'd love to get my hands on.

Speaking of stash, I had set a goal to sew over 150 yards this year. I'd better get busy!