Feature · I Wish You a Merry QAL

I Wish You a Merry QAL Block 5!

I am so proud to share the Snowman block I designed!  I used Moda Grunge Evergreen, White Paper, Onyx, and Red for the piecing portion of the block.  Mr. Snowman’s nose is a Moda Grunge Orange scrap.

When we first started planning this QAL, I jumped at the chance to make a Snowman block!  Snowmen are my favorite thing about winter and the holidays, especially cute snowmen.  As you can see, I made a lot of not-so-cute and not-so-proportional snowmen through the different iterations of the design I tried.

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weekly update

Massdrop is my new love

Since it’s the holiday season and I’ve been purchasing a lot of items online, I have been keeping a running list on my Google Keep of items I’ve ordered but haven’t received yet.  Lately I’ve noticed that the items that take over the list are from Massdrop.  Massdrop is a website that utilizes group purchasing to get a cheaper price on items by buying in bulk.  They organize “drops” with vendors then offer them up to the people that are subscribed to the website for discounted prices.  The more people that join a particular drop, the cheaper the price gets!  Once the drop ends, Massdrop orders from the vendor.  The items get shipped to Massdrop and then repackaged and sent out to the individuals who joined the drop.  The normal delivery to customer is typically a month out, but the deals are worth it!

I first learned about Massdrop from an Instagram comment and I went to investigate.  Since then I’ve purchased quite a few items from the site.  I’ve gotten a large range of items from scissors to patterns to a lightbox to a sew steady for my machine!  There was an article on the Craft Industry Alliance a few months ago about if Massdrop was hurting other quilt shops (local and online).  I personally feel like I gain more value seeing all these different tools that I wouldn’t normally have been introduced to on the website.  There are a few things that have been drops that haven’t been the best deal on the internet either so that’s something to be aware of.  There are other categories of items that get sold on Massdrop, but quilting is the only one I believe specifically targets women.  I think it is pretty cool that they recognize quilting is a thing and there are definitely people out there enjoying this hobby!

Also I should mention that you need to become a member of Massdrop to see the prices; you can’t do a direct comparison of prices without being signed in.  I should also mention I am no way affiliated with Massdrop and received no compensation for writing this on my blog.  I am just really excited that I’m started to get some of the items that I ordered!  If you want to sign up, if you could use my referral link that’d be awesome! https://www.massdrop.com/r/WY5ZFX

Anyway, this past week I definitely suffered from anxiety working on Pattern #102.  There is always this anxiety that what I create is not going to look good or the fabrics I’ve chosen are terrible and don’t work.  I dragged my feet all week to work on it.  What I can say is that I’m very happy with how my sample turned out.  That’s right, when I started working on it I went all in and finished the sample quilt top!  It’s going to be a strip quilt, so it will take a honey bun (mini size) or two jelly rolls for the full quilt.  The sample I made was from a honey bun just to test and make sure everything worked out well.  I’ve ordered some fabric from sample spree so the full-size finished quilt will be from new fabric coming out in January.  I decided to use my extra bits and pieces from my small sample to make some hexies.  Here’s a little sneak peak!  Do you recognize the fabric? It’s Sundrops by Corey Yoder!

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I must have been in a mad dash finishing mood this week too.  I finished 14 of the steampunk blocks, 4 more than my goal!  Now I just have one more to finish all 41 blocks! (and then of course, I need to applique the centers on)  This quilt is going to be so wicked…I can’t wait till it’s completely finished!

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One thing I was very aggressive about this week was finishing the Treehouse quilt.  I got the basting down, but haven’t started machine quilting.  Oops. As I was pin basting, I realized I am not a fan of basting whatsoever.  I think I need to figure out how to glue baste, maybe I’ll like that technique better.  I wonder how much space I will need or if I need a hardwood floor (those are rare in my house).  Hopefully I can get time to finish quilting it this next week.  Maybe I’m not a machine quilting fan either, I feel like I fight my quilt so maybe a good goal will be to finish quilting this calendar year!  (way to set achievable goals!)

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I was super bummed I didn’t get my Christmas fabric I ordered from Fat Quarter Shop this weekend.  The post office messed up because it criss-crossed the Twin Cities before it finally got to me on Monday.  I really wanted to make some Christmas Ornaments as gifts this year.  So this is going to heavily influence my goals this week…

12/6-12/13 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Thursday and Friday Night, and Sunday afternoon

Projects I want to work on:
Christmas Ornaments
Treehouse Quilt
Cozy Christmas  (Since I’ll be getting it back this week from Rhonda!!!)

Goals for the Projects:
Christmas Ornaments:  Make at least 5 (I think I only have enough straight pins for 5 right now)
Treehouse Quilt: Quilt and bind (who am I kidding, I most likely will be making ornaments!)
Cozy Christmas:  Bind

Tutorial · weekly update

Break out the Christmas Décor

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving Holiday!  I definitely had a lot of fun traveling back home to Dallas to visit my parents and have a mini family reunion for the holiday.  Airports don’t seem to understand that it’s perfectly normal to travel with a sewing machine and a carry-on full of fabric… at least it is for quilter.  But I got everything there and back home without too much fuss.

So this Christmas stocking that I made with cathedral window was fairly epic.  I used the technique on the Missouri Star Quilt Co. website, however I did not use the 5 inch charm squares.  I thought for a stocking, the fabric variety should be smaller.  I used 2 1/2″ squares for the stockings.  Half way through making the stocking, I realized I that I could provide a cheat sheet for those that want to make something similar.

Cathedral Window Stocking
Materials:
1 Fat Quarter for the lining
1 Fat Eighth for the cuff and loop
3 mini charm packs or 1 charm pack of Christmas Print
3 mini charm packs or 1 charm pack of white fabric (I used Bella Solids White)

If you are not using mini charm packs, cut the charms into 2 1/2″ squares.  There are 106 print squares needed and 112 white squares needed.  Iron all of the white squares’ opposite corners together to form a triangle.

Now you will need to layout the printed fabric as shown in the photo below.  This is really to cover the part that is going to be cut for the stocking size.  Make sure that you make one that has a MIRRORED layout to get both sides of the stocking.  The layout must be mirrored or else your stocking will have 2 of the same side!

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I decided that I wanted to glue baste the white triangles, so they did not move while being sewn together. I ended up not glue basting the squares together, just the triangles to the squares.  I did attempt to glue baste the pieces completely together, but it caused too much bulk.  If you have never glue basted, you can use Elmer’s washable glue with a micro fine tip or something similar to help get a small line of glue.  Then you use your iron to heat set the pieces together.  If you made a mistake, no worries just pull the fabric apart and re-glue.  I used a walking foot to piece the squares together due to the bulk of fabric.

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Once the pieces are sewn together, pick prints to go in the windows of the stocking.  When making a cathedral window with 5 inch squares, you don’t need to cut the pieces down.  However, we are using the mini charm size, and the pieces will be too big for the window.  The mini charms for the windows only will need to be trimmed to 2 1/4″ square to fit.  Once you trim them down, you can lay it out to show how the stocking will look.  I glue basted the white edges down on the print square so it would be easier to sew together.

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Once they are all glue basted, I used my walking foot to sew on the white edges to secure all the fabric in place.

I used Sew Like My Mom’s free stocking pattern as my template to trace on the cathedral window fabric for my stocking outline.  I sewed on the line around the stocking so when I cut the stocking out, the fabric would not unravel in some places.  You can use her tutorial for how to assemble the rest of the stocking together here.

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I love how this stocking turned out!  It was so much fun to make, and it looks so good.

I also found this really neat No-Sew “Quilted” Christmas Ornament YouTube video by Shabby Fabric that I can’t wait to make.  I ordered some fabric and got supplies to make the ornaments later this month.  It looks like a great project for some scraps left over from a Christmas quilt.

I think this upcoming year I’ll have more time to plan quilt gifts for friends and family.  I don’t really have any quilt Christmas gifts planned this year so sorry to everyone that was hoping to get one!

11/29-12/6 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Wednesday and Friday Night, and Saturday and Sunday afternoon

Projects I want to work on:
Powered by Quilting Patterns
Steampunk
Treehouse Quilt

Goals for the Projects:
Powered by Quilting Patterns:  Cut fabric for Pattern #102, start sewing
Steampunk:  Complete 10 Blocks
Treehouse Quilt: Machine quilt and bind.

weekly update

Happy Thanksgiving Week!

It’s Turkey Day week!  I can’t believe the holidays are among us! I figured I should probably do some Christmas quilting in addition to the Cozy Christmas quilt.  I’ve wanted to make a Cathedral Window Christmas Stocking for months now so that is my Thanksgiving holiday.  I can’t wait to see how it turns out.

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Anyway the Blog Hop last week was super fun! If you didn’t get a chance to check out the other awesome designers you can check out the list here.   I did forget to update my completed quilts page with the Spinning Vectors quilts, but it’s up there now!  Check it out here.  I finished binding my Moroccan Getaway quilt last night too, but there wasn’t enough light out to take a good photo.  That makes the total number of quilts finished this year (minis included) to 12 so far!

As promised I wanted to give a recap on Sewing Expo in Minneapolis that I attended a week and half ago.  It’s a 3 day show with hands on classes and lectures, a vendor show, and quilt displays.  I was able to take 2 classes prior to leaving to China.  One of the classes I took was “Garden Pond” by Cristy Fincher of Purple Daisies Quilting.  It was a technique called Piec-lique!  It’s a great technique for sewing curves and they come out perfect!  You use freezer paper as a template to make the curved part and glue baste the pieces together before sewing.  The curves come out nearly perfect every time and makes it look so easy.

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The second class I took was “North to Alaska” by Kathy Lincoln.  It was a pattern that she designed for a sewing cruise to Alaska (hence the name).  It was a great class to learn about quick techniques about sewing quarter triangles and partial seams.  I used fabric that was left over from my sister’s Spinning Vectors quilt.  The partial seams technique can also be used on Spinning Vectors as well.  So I will be working on the tutorial for Y-seams and partial seams to help other quilters out.

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One of the best things about the quilt show was the MQG quilts that traveled to the show.  They were so amazing and helped give me inspiration.  I can’t wait to make something so wonderful that I could submit to a show.  Goal in my quilting life:  submit a quilt into a show and win! (or just be good enough to be accepted into the show)

My schedule for the next pattern will be the following:

  • Samples created by the end of December.
  • Pattern out to proofreaders right after the first of the year.
  • Pattern out to testers in mid-January.
  • Pattern out by beginning of February.

I realized that if I didn’t get myself a timeline, I wouldn’t get the motivation to keep moving forward.

I also finished my Month 4 Blocks of the Modern Heritage BOM.  They were nice and easy 4 patch blocks.  I realized that sometimes it’s just wonderful to work on some easy blocks.  They are so cute!

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That’s all I got this week!  Have a happy Thanksgiving!

11/22-11/29 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Friday, Sunday, and Monday Night

Projects I want to work on:
Powered by Quilting Patterns
Christmas Stocking

Goals for the Projects:
Powered by Quilting Patterns:  Complete math and fabric layout for Pattern #102
Christmas Stocking: Finish Cathedral Window Stocking