Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How can quilt blocks do that?

There are moments when everything about a person in my life comes flooding back.

I made these beauties for the lovely jigs1354 in the {Sew Bee It} group.
{Sew Bee It} - June '12

How can these blocks bring up so much?

I've said a few times before that my grandmama has been a huge inspiration for me during my quilting adventure. I went to college where I could visit my grandparents during holidays. It was kinda making up for the years that we lived too far away from one another when I was growing up. And all the things I've learned from my grandmama and my grandpapa is unbelievable.

They bought a farm after "retirement" and I never worked two people work so hard. Irrigation, farming caring for animals, crafts galore, welding, and many other things. These two people have worked way harder in retirement life than I ever have just making a go. 

In college finally lived close enough so I could go visit these two wonderful people during holidays. When I did visit, I was put to work. I actually loved this and I think both grandparents knew it!  I could finally put in a fraction of the effort that they put into their everyday.

I would go between the shop with grandpapa and in the house with grandmama with whatever fabric project she had going on.

In the shop, I assisted Grandpapa with his calendar frames assembly that he sold at a local shop.  These were beauties!  I was not allowed to use all the tools but he taught me how to use a few of them.  Over the years I might have helped put together 30 + frames. Yet my wonderful grandpapa made at least 20 times as many from start to finish. Oak & pine frames in a variety of stain colors and waxed finishes.

In the house, I helped grandmama with her fabric projects that she sold to the same local shop.  Now let me just say that I came by the fabric stashing legitimately people!  When I was in college, grandmama was past the quilt making business, dolls + clothes, and I think the stuffed bears in appliqued clothing. At that point in time grandmama made appliquéd sweatshirts.  These beauties were intricate! I traced, ironed, cut, and re-ironed pieces for HOURS!  And again the hours I put in was nothing compared to the many hours she put into these before shipping them off to sell.

I have to admit, slowly, that I've learned so much from my family and that YES I can do anything.  I've had the basic training to do pretty much anything. And the stubbornness that if I don't know something . . . to learn it to keep moving forward.

So, how again can a simple block bring back so much? My grandmama made me a lap quilt when I was around 10 years old . . . one of the few items I have to remember her by. This poor lap quilt is tattered from the years of love but still sits in my closet. It also is a log cabin pattern. One of these day's I'll re-create it.

  I hope these blocks will one day create many other lasting memories as they have stirred-up in me while making them. ♥

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

WIP Wednesday 6.20.12

It's been awhile since I've linked up to Lee over at Freshly Pieced.  With my brain absorbing  the changes of life including but not limited to: my laptop dying, on-line bee's ending, garden needing to be tended to, summer coming at us like a lion where my step-daughter will be back and forth visiting her mother. 

It's time for me to link up again to Works in Progress (WIP) Wednesday with Lee over at Freshly Pieced. I haven't done this for way too long but it's time to take account again.

Finished projects:

- Clean sewing area - seriously it's amazing to see the floor again!  I of course didn't bring in a new trash bag so small pieces of fabric are already starting to gather.
- Bee Blocks!  I'm finishing up my bee commitments but still have a few going on.    I ran out of fabric - gasp!  But more is making it's way to my mailbox as we speak.

Oh did I show you this one yet?  The Orange you Glad bee I was able to sew for The Pewter Acorn

Orange you Glad - June '12
Everything was cut so well I didn't even blink and this block was done.

New projects:

- Packaged up bee blocks for July for the awesome bee group {Sew Bee It} - the last time I'll be mailing out for myself in 2012.
- Wedding wall-hanging for my fella's peeps.  I'm doing a New York Beauty!

Active WIP:

- Pay it Forward items
- May Bee Blocks: Bee a Lone Star(burst)
- June Bee Blocks: Bee a Lone Star(burst)
- Layer Cake quilt-top {hanging on my design wall . . lalalalala}
- Knitted Socks ~ my first pair baby! I'm even on the second one.
- Knitted baby blanket for Lou
Back-Burner WIP:

- Postage Stamp quilt.
- PJ pants for fella
- Twice as Nice quilt top
- Threadheads quilt-top
- Aqua and Red (Round 1) quilt-top
- Waiting for blocks for: Aqua and Red (Round 2), Sew Modern Bee, and Aqua and Orange - then all of these will are offically back-burner WIP's too!

This week's stats:
Finished projects - ~3
New Projects - 2
Currently in progress - lalalalala

Hope all is going well in your neck of the woods. 

I'm linking this post to :

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, June 18, 2012

Who runs out of fabric?

I can not believe that I can actually run out of fabric!  

Seriously who runs out of Kona Ash?  That's right . . . this girl does.  Pfft.  Whatever!  I'll be needing to pinch my pennies so I can restock the basics apparently.  It's so hard as when I'm shopping I want so much more!

I am rocking and rolling on some super late bee blocks and about to finish them up.  .no light grey.  Here's one of the blocks that I can't finish.  

Bee a Lone Star(burst) - May '12
This is a pattern from this lovely lady!  This is super fun with all different kind of fabrics.

My paper piecing mode has started up again.  I'm pretty sure I'll be doing this for the rest of the month.  Maybe a New York Beauty for a wedding my fella is going to later this year.

Here is a block for a local gal in the New Bee on the Block group.
New Bee on the Block - June '12

Some of these are fabrics I contributed to a local swap.  I might have to break out these swap fabrics to make something myself! It's fun to have a block that I can bust out in 10 minutes!

I have to applaud these ladies in the "New Bee on the Block" on-line bee group, they have made it though an entire year. . they are AMAZING! Even with some MIA members.

 Well off I go to pout about running out of fabric.  I will see if the budget will allow me to re-up my missing stock.  Of course it's helpful to remember my small couch in my sewing room with all of my potential up for sale fabrics. I just need to take some time to take lovely photos of the fabrics and yarns!  I'll get these up soon.

I'm linking this post up to 

Sew Happy Geek

Hope you all have a lovely start to another week!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Beep Beep. . changes ahead

I usually take awhile to get into new projects.
I'm a planner, which is not always welcomed by my family.
I have not planned this quilting experience at ALL!

It's been a pleasant surprise all of the things I've gathered over the last two-ish years. 

I've learned, I can sew!
Okay I knew this before but the techniques I've pushed myself into!
Besides patterns, which I can follow if I can wrap my head around it is something that I've known I could do.  But here are the things that I didn't know I could do!
June - Threadheads

October - Aqua & Orange

October - {Sew Bee It}

Paper Piecing

Bee a {Modern} Swapper March block 2

Lone Starburst

The one thing that I know for sure - I love sewing with others!
This is super apparent because of the many an on-line bee I've joined. 

While I'm not stopping sewing - far from it! I will be finishing my commitments of swaps and bee's.  I'll join an occasional swap, but for the most part my sewing time will be committed to other things.

Keep an eye out on where I'm headed next!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Sewing for Others

I'm finishing up my commitments of long-term sewing for others.  I do (thankfully) have a few more bee's until the end of this year.  This is super hard! 

good bloggy friend of mine asked if I could make a few blocks for her. 
Oh course I said YES! 
She asked me to use her tutorial found here.

Look at the lovely fabrics she sent!

Fireflies Block 1 
I finished these up in my mass of sewing bee blocks for May. That was a kick-butt and take names sewing day. 

Fireflies Block 2

My fella is right, I love seeing my work in other's people's finished products.
With slowing down my outside commitments to sewing for others, I'll be able to put together a TON of quilts with all of the blocks other's have sent me with my fabrics.  Go ME!

Friday, June 1, 2012

2 years ago

~Sad post ahead~

Well, it's been two years today since my father passed away from lung cancer.

I was so lucky to be down with him because of my job and awesome co-workers donating time so I could afford to be down there. My younger, most amazing, wonderful, and strong sister was also able to be there most of the time before he passed. I totally find that amazing with her job, husband, and 3 children being nearly 3,000 miles away.

So, two years ago my life totally changed and it was shocking (and still is) in so many ways. It took me months to even half-way process what had happened.   Grief is a weird thing.

Thankfully I had my cat, Simone Elizabeth. But my poor little girl was sick, she was sick before I left to be with my father, but she progressively got worse.


She was a very fickle little girl!  While she didn't let others near her, she let me do whatever I wanted, within reason, without much complaint.  She was mine and I was hers.  That's just the way it was.

Here she is letting me take a photo shoot of my first completed circular knitting project.  Maybe that was my first knitting project!

Simone Hat

Doesn't she looked thrilled! 

And while I was recovering from my father's passing I started to get into quilting.  Here is my little girl helping me lay-out the second quilt I had cut out. 

Simone Quilt

Sad I haven't been able to touch this quilt since she passed away because it's still just too hard!

I was so lucky to have Simone around for another 4 months. Then I had to go through another death.  The vet thought that is was some sort of cancer, stomach maybe.

There has been a lot of moments where I just have to step back with my Grandmama, Dad, and cat passing away! Each of them in such different parts of my life and each I have to morn in such different ways.

But two years since my world was turn up-side down.  I'm cherishing all of my moments I had with my Dad.  I hear his sarcastic, loving words of advice when I do stupid things.  And in reality I'm doing less stupid things while I get through and "grow-up".

Part of my growing-up will be an upcoming de-stash of some of the fabrics I adore but just know that it's not the right time for me to keep them.

Thanks for reading and hey you couldn't see all the times I had to stop and sob while writing this! As my step-daughter told me just yesterday - I'm just too emotional. Ha!