Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Beautiful May

Wow.  .are you ready for some blocks?  I can not believe how much I got out the door this month!

{Sew Bee It} - May '12

Shelly has jumped right into this bee after life hit a few of our members.  She provided some lovely blue fabrics and asked for a herringbone block [tute found here].  These were awesome to make.  These totally work - if you follow the instructions.  Thankfully a fellow beemate urged us to do that before I worked on these.  It's like magic people!

I am started this bee almost a year ago now.  I'm stepping in the last two months as life has hit a few of the bee-mates.  mejbenz wanted wonky houses.  She sent a lovely assortment of fabrics.  Here is what I came up with. 

Oh and I made up a story for each. . .
New Bee on the Block - May '12

This block is a wonky beach house.  Can you see the ocean, beach, dune, and reeds on the left side of the block?  And then the many funky houses that are at the beach this one with a wonderful pink door.  It's a tall place that you can rent anytime.  There are windows on the beach side of this place, you just can't see them. Let's go rent it and go beach combing.  

New Bee on the Block - May '12

And for my second trick. . . a castle! 
I've always wanted to go stay in a castle. And why not here! This domed abandoned place has a huge moat with a retaining rock wall that still stands today.  This is only one snapshot of this monstrous place.  Sadly this castle has seen it's day but it's still fun to visit.

Orange you Glad & Block Party - May '12

Funny that there are many overlaps with the gals I sew with.  This month Shawn was the queen bee for May in both of these bee's.  Here are her two stacked blocks. She has a quick tutorial found here.

Orange you Glad - Hive A May '12 I stepped in to make an angel block for Jacqueline in the other hive (yes there are 20 + ladies in this bee). The tutorial is found here over with Anna.  Let me tell you this block put me back in my place!  I am so sure that I'm soooo good and then a block like this steps in. My brain hurts from making this thing. I did prevail - eventually.  I hate to talk about how many times the trusty seam ripper was in my hand.  At least the fabrics were fabulous to work with and she included enough!

Aqua and Red

The last month of this bee with two lovely ladies and two fun blocks.

First up -
Granny Squares

Aqua and Red - Block 1 May '12

whimbrella asked for these from this tutorial.  
Aqua and Red - Block 2 May '12 

And since these were pre-cut so this was super quick!

Anything circles

Julianne, she blogs here, asked for circles.  It's awesome to see the variations that people are coming up with.

Aqua and Red - May '12

I attempted a circle at first and it was all blah (blah = puckers, anger, and something way ugly)!  So I then ended up with this lovely.
This is HUGE so it can cut it down however she wants.

Bee a {modern}swapper

Bee a {modern} Swapper - Book block 

I'm doing a side swap in this bee with stayathomelibrarian. Her block came in the mail on Saturday.  I wanted to make hers before I opened her package up. I've never made a book block before and this one kinda made my head scratch. There is a little book of life is tucked in there.  If only I could find it! It's tucked right in between a book of sewing and the Little Miss Naughty.

The last month of this bee we worked on some fantastic garden fence blocks.  Seriously this is adding to a yellow quilt desire!
Sew Modern Bee - Block 1 May '12 

Blue Bellbird, she blogs here, provided these pre-cut. I had these done within 20 minutes of them walking in my door.  I held them hostage until today.  I didn't want to see them go!
  Sew Modern Bee - Block 2 May '12

We used this tutorial. These are so wonderful I might need to make something for myself from this. And these colors.. oh swoon!

I'll be late on one bee - the lone star(burst) blocks but I'll finish these up soon after my step-daughter goes to visit her mother this summer. The paper piecing is just not something I want to tackle at the moment.  But I'll get there!

Not too shabby for May, if I do say so myself.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Feeling left behind . . . but not forgotten

I know that some of my bee-mates are feeling neglected. But there is a way that I make my bee blocks - with love! I don't sit down and just trudge through.  This is an act of time and care, for me.

I finally sat down and finished a few blocks for the April bee-mates.

Templates from the talented Anna 

These blocks are for Sarah over at Bluprint Textiles.  

Bee a Lone Star(burst) - April '12 

She sent us the awesome background print.

Bee a Lone Star(burst) - April '12 

I'm loving this bee and seeing how everyone is using the same template but coming up with such different blocks, even in the same color pallets.

I was also late getting blocks to one of my favorite bee-mates Mary
Garden Lattice - {Sew Bee It} April '12

I stitched up some garden lattice blocks, and used Mary's blog post to make sure I was stitching everything right.  Thank you for photos - these totally helped me out.


With my new tires my budget is kinda beating me down the next few months. I immediately told everyone what was happening.  And the response was beautiful!  I don't want own anyone else's stuff but there is something to be said about communication.  And in my case it helped me feel better about a situation that I had little control over. I am learning from this mistake and trying new budget tactic.

If anyone is not in an on-line quilting bee and are interested in them, there is a lovely recent post about them found here.  I've learned so much about sewing and interactions.  Of course a bit more than I anticipated.

I'll post again soon about the May bee blocks that I have them all done and ready to walk out the door! 

Thursday, May 24, 2012

May's supposed to be all about flowers

Recently it's been all about the rain!  It's so strange that the weather has been cooler and much more rain than I remember.

So besides the literal rain it's raining a bit in my life too.  Good and not so good. This spring season this year I've done a LOT and I'm super tired!

  • I planted a garden & saved it from 2 frost warning nights.
  • I've helped my step-daughter with end of the year activities including a dance and outdoor school which is basically camping for 4 days and 3 nights.
  • Besides that other life stuff, I've had to scramble because the car needed some TLC.  This car stuff came in the form of HUNDREDS of dollars that I didn't have in the budget until the beginning of August.  Lalalala  
But it being my birthday it's all about the good things! 

I have new tires!  Ohhhhh!

I have my awesome family! ♥ Lots of love from everyone on facebook and friends but my sister and  mother spoiled me this year!
These lovely new pinking sheers!

Oh yeah and remember my whining in this post
Yeah, I wanted a blanket stitch  . . .

Oh Brother I

I can do that PLUS more!  A new sewing machine is so much fun.  It's a computerized Brother.  Right know it's name is "Ohhh brother" - since I only have a sister.

Can I just say this is the LIGHTEST machine ever! I'll gladly take this along with me on my trips - anywhere!  I may become the traveling seamstress!

I spent over an hour reading the manual, setting this beauty up, and sewing up a few pieces.  This is going to be a beautiful relationship.  Some of the perks I know so far: automatic back stitch, up/down button for the needle, speed control, a buttonhole foot and fancy blah blah, and the BLANKET STITCH

I have a few blocks to share but first I have to go play with my new sewing machine and then I'll have a whole lot more to share.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

A whole month gone in other words April bee blocks catch-up

Well I must say that a whole month has whisked by and I'm wondering where it's gone! 

Sewing wise I was focused on my auction quilt and I'm so proud!

That came at the perfect time as I was Queen Bee for 3 of my (cough) few bee's I'm participating in.  I've been gathering a few packages every few days.  I'll blog about that sometime in the future!

As for what I was able to sew for others I had a few items.

Block Party Bee

Block Party Bee - April '12 Block 1 

These are made from some lovely vintage sheets.

Block Party Bee - April '12 Block 2

I have to say that I am Mama Mac chose a lovely block for everyone to sew up. 

Orange you Glad - April '12

Marta requested these wonderful granny squares.  Seriously the best blocks eva!  That's why they are popping up all over the quilty blogs.

Aqua and Red - April '12

Look at the lovely fabrics tinking along sent.  It was super fun to pick out any star I wanted and not to have a background like white, as I'm used to.

Templates from the talented Anna is to just fall over from.  I'm in awe of all of her work go check her out you won't be sorry!

  Bee a Lone Star{burst} April Block 2

These blocks are for Crandons. She wanted grey backgrounds and YUM!  I have to stop questioning my fabric choices as these are rocking all done up.

Bee a Lone Star{burst} April Blocks

Sarah has given me permission to not stress about her blocks. . so here they are but I'm going to wait til I'm in the right mind-set to stitch them up. I'll show the finished blocks off when I finish them. 

I also have to finish up a blocks for the group I'm hosting {Sew Bee It}. I get to sew for one of my favorite bee-mates Mary picked yet another block that stretches me beyond what I anticipated. Black is such a lovely stark color.  Oh it's fun to sew for others!  But I'll also show that off later.


That's my re-cap for most of April. May is a bit more busy but that's another story for another time.

Hope you get to hear the whir of a machine soon!


Friday, May 4, 2012

Finished Auction Quilt

I walked myself right into making a quilt for a girlfriend.  I love how my friends believe in me. 

She commissioned a quilt from me to be completed within a month and a half. Totally do-able. . right?!

Right!  With the help of having a deadline and my wonderful fella, my project was completed in time!

My girlfriend is a teacher at a private high school Columbia Adventist Academy (CAA). 
The class colors are red and black.
This year they have 20 seniors.

Perfect combo for a signature quilt!  I had each senior write with permanent pen on grey fabric I provided.  Some seniors included a lot and other's were sweet and simple. 

While piecing this quilt top together I listen to podcasts, really catching up on them. It was hilarious that I was listening to the History Quilter's HQ Podcast Episode 21 Signature Quilts while finishing up the quilt-top.  Makes me ponder where this quilt will end up.

CAA 2012 Quilt Front 
CAA 2012 Auction Quilt
Completed April 2012

CAA 2012 Quilt Back
The back was pieced from leftover yardage and a yummy addition of the grey dot fabric. 

The back didn't even up wonky - I'm so impressed.  

I included a pieced in label using the same pen as the kids used for the front.  With my details included.
CAA 2012 Quilt Back Signature Block

This has been washed.  The colors and permanent pen is awesome. I love how we don't have to worry about fabrics bleeding (although I did use a color catcher in the wash). I'm not a fan of black in big blocks like in the back, since I did take awhile to de-lint before handing this over.

A huge thank you to my girlfriends who shared in the joy of this quilt.  I super appreciate them ooohhhing and awwwwing over this finished project.  And help with the photo shoot so I could share it here. ♥
I love my first 2012 finish.  And this completion reminds me it's the entire process is not so bad!

On-ward and up-ward!