Tag Archive | Fig Tree

Weekend Finish and starting BOM … again …

Hello again.  Been gone awhile – but it went by so very fast.  Closed another month of books at work and tried to be ‘in the moment’ with the kids the past two weeks.  Had to get some ‘me’ time in though still.  I have a weekend finish to my Avalon quilt top, although I may still embelish a bit when I go to quilt it.  Waiting on the Avalon yardage to come in (and another paycheck) to get the backing.

I decided to make excellent use of my California Girl fabric that I bought on extreme sale from my local quilt shop that sold out its bolts last year.  I bought several yards of each of the stripe fabric in three different colorways.  I picked the gray and yellow stripe to complete the border and 9-patch corners.  Very sunny and cheerful!  Turns out that it could now fit a California Twin (if they existed).

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Borders are my nemesis… and finding any place that I could possibly lay out a quilt to baste it.  I may have to wash down my driveway one day, pitch a tent to keep bird poop off and tape it to the concrete.  I just don’t have that much floor space!  Or… I guess I can bring it to my office and baste it after work one day by T-pinning it to the commercial carpet.  It all feels like dirty options.  Or tape it up on the livingroom wall?  I saw a tutorial one time where someone took newspaper to mask off the surrounding area and spray basted their quilts in the garage on the wall.  Maybe I could try that in the livingroom. 

Another psuedo finish for this weekend was my Robin’s Nest BOM.  I did finish the center ring of red stars and stitched it to my appliqued hexagon.  Those star blocks finish at 3 inches!  3 INCHES!  This was going to be a challenge for sure.  I have my mini fit-to-be-geese ruler on order with Monique, but she is waiting for a shipment to come in…  I do have perfect acrylic templates that allow you to cut the shapes exactly as they should be, with squared off corners and all to make it fit.  Surprisingly, I got better results on this project when I made sure I didn’t skimp on the 1/4″ seam allowance.  Those seams seemed so BIG compared to the finished size of these pieces.

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 Look at those pitiful points and pinched connecting triangles!

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I nearly cried when I put it on my wall and stepped away to view it.  It was terrible. !@#$!@#$ 

Calm down, not the end of the world. 

Except that I have someone special in mind for this quilt and I want it to be as perfect and beautiful and I know it could be.  Thankfully, Homestead Hearth provided enough fabric such that I could screw this up at least twice and still make another set that is worth a damn.

So… I ripped out all the stitches and salvaged the center hexagon.  The red stars were too distorted to fool with.

 

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Here is “Take 2” on those stars.  They look better already.  Practice is making better (not perfect yet).  So, 2 stars redone and 4 more to go.  The next ring is 12 blue stars, done the same way.  Hopefully I will be a pro by then.

Therefore, I am still linking up to Sinta’s BOM Rehab since I technically did complete my block – at least once.

Finally – a gratuitous picture of my grandmother and daughter.  I took this last weekend when I was visiting my parents to celebrate my brother’s and my birthday week.

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Thank you for stopping by today!

Jennifer

My instant gratification is almost done!

LOL … for me, instant gratification seems to mean about a month turn-around for a quilt top.  If I get the borders on this weekend, like I plan to, it will have taken just over a month to do this.  I’m very excited about it though, because it will be done in the newest Fig Tree collection which isn’t even out in yardage yet.  I’ll wait for the yardage though to come out for the backing and then I’m trying to decide on whether I hand quilt it or send it off.

Here’s a little impromptu addition I made to the bottom of the quilt last weekend:

 

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I thought the little flower blocks needed some baskets to go with them!  I had those half-square triangles left over from my ‘scraps’ when making the flower blocks.  Don’t look too closely though.  I didn’t do any math to figure out the positions.  I just added on strips and cut them down to size to fit the bottom of the quilt.  I did have to break into my Avalon charm pack to get the handle applique, since I didn’t have long bias strips to use instead.

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Avalon Blue Basket

Avalon Blue Basket

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I was auditioning the yellow flower fabric from Strawberry Fields for my containment border.  I’ll be sewing that on next.  It goes perfectly!!

Thinking of adding a few applique flowers and vines to complete the look I want.  I’ll lay some out after the borders are on and see what I think.  Stay tuned!

Have a wonderful weekend – see you on the other side for BOM Rehab!

Jennifer

BOM Rehab and a new Blogger Girls Block

Happy Monday!

So glad that BOM Rehab coincided with a new release for the Blogger Girls BOM pattern.  The third block in the series was available Friday, and I was done with both versions by Saturday night.  I have even tackled my fear of Flickr and uploaded my pictures into the Blogger Girl’s group for all to see!

This was a neat block…  I didn’t much like how my first one ended up.  Not enough variation in scale of prints I think.  But it will mix in overall, so I’m leaving it.  I love my alternate block setting and fabric selections.  I went with a layout that I saw from Lisa of Stashmaster blog fame.  She highlighted the churn dash design in the center, which I did as well.

Here’s the primary layout:

BG BOM Block 3

BG BOM Block 3

And here’s the alternate layout for the same block pattern:

BG Block 3 Alt

BG Block 3 Alt

I came across some random stash yardage of La Petite Ecole by French General and used the red floral from it to frame the outside square-in-a-square and the churn dash blue fabric.  It mixed in really well.  I’ve pull some other items from that group to consider on the next blocks too.  The rest of the fabric is still from the La Belle Fleur collection that just came out.

Here are all six of my blocks completed:

BG BOM Blocks 1 - 3

BG BOM Blocks 1 – 3

Not bad for a BOM Rehab finish!

Here’s a sneak peak at something else I worked on yesterday.  I’ll reveal it more later this week… 🙂

Avalon Blue Basket

Avalon Blue Basket

Have a wonderful week and thanks for stopping by!

Jennifer

Avalon progress

I have finished the center portion of my Avalon quilt.  Now to trim the edges and decide on borders.  I have partial strips left over from all the prints in the jelly roll.  Thinking of some interesting way to put them to use in the border, while keeping with the flower theme.

Sorry for the poor lighting.  It was still early this morning and it was starting to rain outside, but I couldn’t resist posting today!

 

Avalon Quilt Center

I had originally intended to leave out the cream colored floral strips from the quilt, because I thought they didn’t have enough contrast with the background.  After I was almost done with the block construction, I started laying out the blocks on the bed for the connecting stage.  I decided to use those three cream strips and make uniform blocks instead and I REALLY like how they turned out.  I am almost willing to say that this is my favorite block in the quilt now:

Avalon Cream Block

So, there are three same-fabric, cream colored blocks scattered in the quilt top.  I’m so glad I did that.

Here’s one more gratuitous picture from the side of my ‘design bed’.

Avalon Quilt Center 2

 

Hope you are having a great start to the new week!

Jennifer

Getting closer!

Sneak peak to my reveal later this week….

avalon wip

And a little closer….

Avalon WIP closeup

Deciding on how to spruce up the borders.  Chat soon!

Jennifer

BOM Rehab – Feb 4th

I worked on many items this weekend, but I just have a short amount of time today for blogging, so I’ll link up to Sinta’s BOM Rehab and show off my completed TREE #1 from my Away From Home BOM.  I finished up the applique of the leaves last night during the Super Bowl.  Some I needle turned and some I did on the machine.  I like the eclectic mix of the result.  You can’t really tell with this picture, given it is too far away and I think a little fingerprint has been smudged on my camera lens…

AFH Tree 1 Finished

However, I’m going to take a break this week from applique and try to complete two other projects.

1 – I have machine stitched the binding to my MIL Stars and Stripes quilt.  I need to finish it by hand sewing it to the back and add a label.  MIL is visiting us in two weeks, so I have a definite deadline!  Pictures when I’m done!

2 – I have almost finished all the blocks for my jelly roll quilt with the Avalon fabric collection.  They look great!  I can’t help myself but to square up after each round of strips though.  Slows me down, but hopefully it is worth it when I go to put it all back together.  Cheater trick, I’m going to make my final two strips about a 1/4 inch larger (they are both in the background fabric) before I sew them on.  That way, if my blocks try to come up a little short anywhere, I have the extra fabric to keep them at an exact measurement.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week!

Jennifer

I want to do what I want to do!

My headline is a quote taken from my 6 year old son.  I can emphasize completely, but as we grow older, we learn to compromise on our desires and our obligations.  He hasn’t mastered this yet, and honestly isn’t really trying either.  But, who can blame him.  Life is short and then you die.  No really, I do parent better than that – but it is a good transition into my post for today!

I came across this blog entry yesterday that captured the essence wonderfully.  Take a read if you have a chance.  It is from a blog called Quilting Daze.  I was either laughing out loud or shaking my head in agreement while I read it.

http://quiltingdaze.blogspot.com/2013/01/the-quilt-police.html

So, this leads me to my activities for today.  I jumped at the chance to get a jelly roll and charm pack of the newest collection from Fig Tree Quilts called AVALON.  It won’t be in stores (and when I say stores, I generally mean The Fat Quarter Shop) until March 2013.  However, I usually find the precuts showing up on eBay well before then.  I didn’t want to just sit on my new treasure too long.  I really, really wanted to do a quick jelly roll quilt and see something produced from these fresh colors immediately.  Some instant gratification!

I looked online and through my patterns at home, and decided on a quilt setting from this book:

Jelly Roll Quilts Book

Got it at a great price during a Joann sale – 40% off this week!

I picked a flower block that is assembled much like a log cabin block from the book and started cutting and sewing…

Avalon Cuttings

Most of these strips are combined with a white/background square on one end and then trimmed corner to corner.  I recently watched a Fons & Porter Love of Quilting episode where they shared tips on stitching these little leftovers and made a little doll blanket out of them.  So I thought I would try to make use of my scrap corners too!

Scrap Recycling

Starting from the top right corner and moving clockwise… I had the strips sewn, trimmed the corners off, kept the fabric together and ran them through the machine, then pressed to the printed fabric and trimmed them down to 1 3/4 ” square.  Notice what my leftovers look like now.  Barely enough threads in that pile to even save for my stuffing bag.

A great tool I used for this was the Fit to be Quarter 2.5 ruler from Open Gate Quilts.  I got it with my purchase of another ruler from their site for the Blogger Girls BOM project.  It worked GREAT for this task.

Fit to be Quarter 2.5

Here is what I did with my little half square triangle units!

Avalon Pinwheels

Aren’t they ADORABLE?  They are 3″ square, unfinished.  And I LOVE this fabric – did I say that already?

Here is my initial block, which took a bit of a back seat to my pinwheel project – so I only have one made so far:

Avalon Block

These will be set on point and I will use all but 4 strips from my jelly roll and I had all but 1 yard of background fabric in my stash for it already.  I’m using Bella Porcelain solid as the background.

I’ll finish up today with a look at my design wall as of this morning.  I even added a couple more leaves to my AFH tree!

Design Wall 01-29-2013

I definitely did what I wanted to do for sure this past weekend.  I hope to continue that this week, because I’m loving my new project.  Also, can’t wait for the next block from the Blogger Girls BOM to be released on Friday!

Have a great week and thanks for stopping by!

Jennifer

Very productive weekend!

Oh my, I have so much to share that I can actually spread it across a few posts this week. 

The first item up for discussion is that my Stars and Stripes quilt is back from the quilter!  Yippee!

Before picture:

MIL Stars and Stripes Flimsy Finish!

MIL Stars and Stripes Flimsy Finish!

I selected LiMa Sews to do the longarm quilting.  I had been following her blog for awhile (link here to Elvy Crafts blog), and recently she announced her quilting services.  I believe she and her husband are doing this in partnership, which is great!  I picked the obvious choice of pantograph for the quilt (Stars and Loops) and sent it off to Linh to get her going.

Quick turnaround and the quilting is beautiful!  Perfect job.  And the return package was just as nice too…

MIL Quilt Returned

Tied up in a perfect navy ribbon and packaged in a brown paper wrap inside the box, with my extra backing strips neatly folded and tucked within. 

 

MIL Quilt Returned 2

Cute as can be!  Here is the link to her website for the longarm services. 

LiMa Sews

It feels really good to get a quilt top converted into a quilt, for sure.  I even got the binding strips done and clipped onto the quilt for sewing this week.  Once that is done, I’ll take some final pictures outside on a good sunny day and post them.  Hopefully I can capture the quilting design well in the pictures.

Sneak peak for tomorrow…  Avalon strips!  I opened my new jelly roll in record time!

Avalon Strips

Happy Monday!  Thanks for stopping by today!

Jennifer

 

Back in Rehab … the best part of my day!

So… these past few days were not as productive as I had wanted.  I picked up the crud bug from my kids and it took me down harder than them.  I am finally feeling back to myself, mostly, but I think the medicine is making me drowsy.  Only two more days to go on that.

The kitchen project is moving   s  l   o   w   l   y.  I think someone is showing up today … not to actually do any work yet, but to test the kitchen for lead paint.  Why?  It’s being repainted anyway and why couldn’t they do that last week?  !@#$!@#$  I’m tired of being without a kitchen.  We took the doors off the refrigerator this morning and moved it from the kitchen to the dining room, so they would be able to get the new floor down without delay.  This is at least an improvement, since before we had the refrigerator in the garage with the good food and the one in the kitchen was kind of roped off.

The best part of the weekend was getting back to my Away From Home BOM.  I’ve got two tall trees to applique, and they will definitely take awhile.  Look below for the picture from the cover of the book which contains the pattern set:

AFH Cover Pic

This is just the center ‘story scape’ block that will be the center of the 100×100 quilt.  Once I get past the trees, I will be given an applique break and I will complete 20 spool blocks (see just below the picture).  I’m looking forward to some piecing with this project and fabric.  I haven’t had a chance to do that yet.

Here’s how far I got with the tree on the right.  The grass and tree trunk is done, but the leaves are just glued in place for the moment as I finish them (20 leaves on each tree).

AFH Block 1 WIP

Oh my gosh, these pics are bad.  I just don’t have good lighting in this room.  I’ll have to take my blocks outside for future pictures.

Here’s the full progress of the AFH BOM:

AFH Block 1-3 WIP

The background fabric appears lighter on my new block (with the tree) than the blocks I’ve had up there for some time.  Maybe a lot of pressing darkens it up and as I finish my trees, it will all come together.

I also stumbled upon a few pre-cuts of the new AVALON fabric collection by Fig Tree Quilts this weekend on eBay. 

(Picture from Fig Tree’s blog, see link above)

Even though I’m not ready to start another project, I couldn’t help but purchase a charm pack and jelly roll – just because I can.  Months earlier than FQS will get them.  I like to have the fabric in my hand to consider as I look at patterns and books and those charm packs are just perfect for sampling.  Oh, and I perhaps got a little sample of Paint Box by Laundry Basket quilts as well… 🙂

Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend – see you tomorrow!

Jennifer

One lone yo-yo …

I finished all of my yo-yos last night!  Problem is, now I have to find a new traveling project for our temporary stay in the hotel.  When all were done, I counted them out.  199!  !@#%$!@9??  Ok… there is some lone yo-yo laying around somewhere, probably under my sewing table.  I will NOT be able to move on with this odd number.  It just isn’t in my DNA.  I’ll be on a hunt for that lone yo-yo.

Here’s what 199 yo-yos look like though.  Beautiful array of Tapestry fabric by Fig Tree Quilts.  Sorry about the poor lighting – I don’t get great lighting, even in the day time, inside the hotel room. 

199 YoYos 2

I made each one using the large Clover yo-yo maker.  I finished them off by pulling the needle to the back and taking several overlapping small stitches.  I love how the dark plum color really pops in this group!

199 YoYos

I also got a sweet surprise in my mail yesterday!  My first bundle of Robin’s Nest fabric from Homestead Hearth!  They are doing this quilt as a BOM in reproduction type fabrics, not all from one collection – so it will be kind of scrappy too.  The burgundy gingham/check is their paper sack – in case that isn’t obvious in the picture.  I ordered the templates and patterns from Somerset Patchword in Australia, and was able to find the fabric BOM program here (afterwards noticing that they had both the fabric and patterns as a BOM option).  Take a look at both of their websites – lots of great eye candy.  Don’t be afraid to order from Australia either – they were so great to work with and if you can just wait for the shipping time, why not?  (Tip – use Skype to call super cheap internationally.  My 15 minute call to Somerset Patchwork cost me only 24 cents).  Can’t wait to get started on this one!

 

Robins Nest Block 1 Fabric

 

I think I’ll bring my tools and La Belle Fleur fabric back to the hotel and do some cutting for the  Blogger Girl’s BOM.  We should be back home tomorrow or Friday at the latest, so I can just get the sewing done this weekend.  Looking up!  AFTER I find that lone yo-yo…

All the best,

Jennifer