Monday, September 28, 2015

Putting Your Best Foot Forward

I've been noticing here and there that mini quilts are really a big thing in the quilting community. I don't have an Instagram, but apparently mini minis are all the rage right now! Even smaller than a mini, some of these are just a few inches square which is mind boggling. So when Kitty over at Night Quilter posted about a swap on Instagram, I ooohhhhed and aaahhhhed with the best of them, deciding that I would have to make at least one to grace my wall. Then the unthinkable happened.
Somebody was being a sleepy grouch during this photo session. Lol
I don't know why it is, but I get starstruck pretty easily in the blogosphere. There are people who have a ton of followers, who are extraordinarily talented, who are well known pattern designers, and some of them even work for/with companies and fabric producers. I know most quilters aren't famous by society's standards, but to me, these people are famous! The first time a blogger that I followed commented on my blog, I nearly jumped up and down on my couch and immediately told my best friend the good news! Lol.
I feel like I'm citing my sources for a research paper, except with a picture!
So when Kitty emailed me asking if I wanted to swap mini minis, I basically lost my mind with glee! I couldn't believe that somebody as awesome and talented as her wanted to take the time to swap with little ol' me! I tried to keep the gushing to a minimum as I accepted, though I'm not sure how successful I was. Lol. She told me some of her likes, but in the end, she gave me free reign because she wanted a 'piece of my style' on her wall. How. Awesome. Is. She?!

My little wee rainbow
If you follow Night Quilter, you know she is all about rainbow and color wheels. And she does some pretty paper piecing as well! So as I laid in bed that night, I started brainstorming. I wanted this to be a totally awesome piece of work that I would be proud to mail to her! And though I just started with EPP, I decided to design an EPP mini mini that I guess is original since I didn't use a pattern or inspiration picture? After having a vague idea of what I wanted, I sat in the floor with all my fabric and sorted through it until I found the colors I wanted. I took a note out of Jenn at A Quarter Inch From the Edge's book and laid them out in a literal color wheel in the floor to make sure things flowed well!
Easiest. Basting. EVER.
And after that, I drew out my design on graph paper, shooting for ~4 inches square as my final product, but I wasn't too hung up if it was bigger or smaller. I was so psyched by my progress that I made templates and basted everything Saturday night, staying up late. Sunday after church, I curled up in the floor again and started stitching everything together. It was so fun to see it come together so quickly, so I just kept chugging along and the next thing I knew, it was quilted and a binding was ready to be put on!
My ol' girl looks enormous next to this mini mini!
The binding was the worst part of this entire project, hands down. I wanted a skinny binding, so that may have been the problem. It was just so finicky and my corners weren't cooperating well. Overall, I think it's okay, but I'm not completely satisfied with it sadly.
It looks all lopsided in this pic, I swear it's not like that!

The title of this mini mini, Putting Your Best Foot Forward, was inspired by the backing fabric. These Cotton and Steel Viewfinders are pretty well known I feel like, but I hadn't actually sat down and read the titles of all the viewfinders. As I was going through my fabric looking for rainbow colors, I stopped to read them and it just seemed fitting. I was working so hard to put my best foot forward with this project! The quilting even emphasized it afterwards, such a happy coincidence! 
Guess who woke up and decided to be a model? ;)
I'm really liking this mini mini business! I'm definitely going to be making more of these in the future. I also think it's going to be a great way to try out new ideas or revisit old ones. So what about you? Are you going to jump onto the mini mini bandwagon? Or are these just too tiny for your tastes? Let me know! :)

Friday, September 25, 2015

Finish It Up Friday: Getting on the Ball

Hey y'all, hope your Friday is going well! As you probably guessed from my absence, things have been pretty busy on my end. I've piddled around with some little things, but no huge amount of progress to share sadly. I do that this little ditty to share though!

Though I've been playing with hexies, I saw a little pentagon ball in All Points Patchwork and I immediately wanted one of my own! I figured I could use it as a pin cushion...or a ball to pelt my husband with if he misbehaved! Lol. I love the scrappiness of it, it makes me smile whenever I look at it. :)
What am I going to do when I run out of these adorable foxes in my scrap bin?!
I also finished this little cross stitch logo for Mr. LBC for our anniversary. He asked if I could make a case for his newest toy, so it will probably get worked into it somehow. Just another project to add to the list, right? :)

Linking up with Finish It Up Friday and NTT!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

A Cat With a Keyboard?

Hey guys, LBC here! I noticed Mom hadn't updated in a while, so I figured I would help her out! She's been working hard, but still getting a little sewing time in here and there, I promise! She keeps laying out little hexagons in the floor; I assumed she wanted me to lay on them and toss them around, but she didn't seem too pleased with my help! She's been quilting some on her Primitive/Americana quilt too. I've been guarding it while it's on the table, can't have anything happening while she's away! She told me she hopes to share a little finish tomorrow, so come back tomorrow evening and check it out!

Little Black Cat :)

Friday, September 11, 2015

Finish It Up Friday: Kona Nerd Level Rising!

Happy Friday y'all! I hope this week has treated you well. A small finish for me this week, but still a fulfilling one! I sent my Kona Project blocks to Val (all the way in Canada!) this week, so I figured it was time to share what I've been stitching at behind the scenes. :)

The original plan was to make 3 blocks for Val @ Purple Boots and Pigtails: Bluegrass, Canary, and Flame. But life happened. So I made the most of my time and came away with 2 blocks that I'm pretty proud of! First up is Canary!

I made Canary with a pretty simple process. After settling for a design, I freehanded the writing on some notebook paper, then I traced the mirror image of it on my Heat n' Bond. I learned the hard way the first time I used it that you HAVE to do the mirror image of what you want. Otherwise you're words will be backwards! Anyway, I ironed it onto the background and stitched around the edges. I would have preferred to do it in yellow thread but I didn't have any and time was short, my friends. Still, I'm proud of the cursive font!

Second is Bluegrass! I love this block and the Kentucky-ness of it! It didn't dawn on me until I finished up that most Canadians probably don't know that Kentucky is the Bluegrass state; heck, most Americans probably don't know that! But I wanted to share myself with these 'virtual friends' that I follow online and, ladies and gentlemen, this block is very much me. I used the same process as the canary block. When I designed it, however, I made the letters too small for me to machine stitch around! I had to hand sew around all the letters to secure them. I had a love-hate relationship with this block until it was finished! Lol.

Hopefully these fit the bill for Val's Kona project, I tried to follow the rules and be myself, which is sometimes hard to do. Have a good weekend y'all!

Linking up with NTT and Finish It Up Friday!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Doing the Unthinkable...

It all started with a trip to the library. Mr. LBC and I ran there after work last week and only had 10 minutes before close. I wasn't feeling up to searching out a bunch of books (I already have a stack to read on my dresser), so I perused the New Arrivals like I usually do when I'm not on a mission. And that's when I spotted this little beauty.
I had seen this pop up once or twice in the blogosphere and I have to say, I almost slipped it back on the shelf, after all hand sewing isn't my thing...but the photography is soooo pretty! I figured if anything, it would be some eye candy when I had a few minutes to burn. I ended up curling up with it when I got home and read it cover to cover, thoroughly convinced that English Paper Piecing (EPP) was something I absolutely needed in my life. Like, now.

So I did what anybody would do when they have a budget but want to start something new: I cut templates out of cereal boxes (Mr. LBC doesn't quite know that I used his boxes yet! LOL), found a decrepit disaster of a project that needed dismembered, and I got to work!

I started with simple hexies just to see how it felt. That seems to be the most popular shape out there, so I figured there would be plenty of help if I needed it. I even attempted to fussy cut little kitty faces on the hexies, though there wasn't quite enough room to get their little ears on them. :( As silly as it sounds, I kind of liked basting the fabric around the template. I'm not sure why, but it was the funnest part of it all for me! Yes, I am going on record as saying I liked a form of basting! Shocker, I know!

Anyway, I made this little booger. I'm not entirely sure what I'm going to do with it yet, but I think it's a good start to my EPP career. So what about you guys? Do you do EPP or hand quilting? Or are you strictly a machine quilter for now?

Linking up with WIP Wednesday!

Friday, September 4, 2015

Throwback Thursday...On a Friday?

Howdy y'all! Once again, I'm late on posting something, but better late than never, right? I have to be quick about this one because life is screaming down my neck at the moment, but I had to share something with y'all today, even if it was small. Jenn @ Quarter Inch From the Edge is hosting Throwback Thursday again, so here's my contribution.

This is my first mini quilt! I made it after seeing a picture on Pinterest; it reminded me of LBC and I couldn't help but imitate the original maker. The blue fabrics were from a fat eighth bundle I snagged at Hobby Lobby and the rest were scraps from previous projects. I used Heat n' Bond to set all the shapes, then I stitched around all the edges. I used FMQ to draw the lines on the umbrella.

So what about you? Are you digging up an oldie but goodie to link up with Jenn's party too? You've still got a couple of days to join in the fun!