Friday, April 29, 2016

A Little Finish: A Charity Baby Quilt

Howdy y'all! I've got a finish to share this week! The Charity Quilt that you've seen bits and pieces of over the last month is finally finished! I had hoped to get some better pictures of it, but it has rained almost all week here so indoor pictures will have to do. :(
Fabric courtesy of Kelly at My Quilt Infatuation (I linked to her blog at the end of this post!)
This baby quilt started as a bundle of fabric I won in a giveaway. I love the cute little prints, but I never knew what to do with it. After hanging onto it for nearly a year, it finally hit me: a baby quilt! But for who?...To give away, of course!
Yes, I did do a quilt photo shoot on top of a dog's been a long week!
This was just the mindless sewing I needed! Easy half square triangles, an easy layout, and easy quilting made for an all around soothing experience.

The backing is just the bigger cuts of leftover fabric, along with some smaller squares to make it a bit taller. It sort of makes it a reversible quilt!

The quilting is...I'm not entirely sure. It was inspired by some quilting I saw by Anja over at Anja Quilts. She says she hates actually quilting her quilts, but she's pretty darn good at it! This was a pretty quick and easy design, but I'm still not 100% sold on it. 

Even the binding was easy, which is insane for me! Lol. I love how scrappy the binding is! I almost used all of my scraps from these fabrics to make the binding, I'm so happy about that!
Now I just have to contact the local hospitals and see if any of them will take this quilt, along with some other things I've made! Have a happy Friday y'all!
My quilting helper *had* to do some quality control before this one gets lint rolled and ready for delivery! :)

Linking up with Finish it Up Friday and Needle and Thread Thursday!

This finish is my goal for OMG April, I'm linking up just under the wire with this one! :)

Also, this is another finish for the Quarter 2 Finish-A-Long list, which you can see here!

Monday, April 25, 2016

A New Addition

I love the little quilting table that came with it, so convenient! :)
Yes y'all, I have welcomed a new member to my fold. I hadn't planned on getting a new machine for quite some time, but this one sort of fell into my lap (free of charge, I might add!) so I figured I would give it a whirl. Meet the newest member of my sewing machine pack, Little Brother! Little Brother is, you guessed it, a Brother machine. One look at him and it was easy to see that he's smaller and much more complicated than my Kenmore a.k.a First Born. I took to the manual and managed to get it up and running pretty easily, which was a relief. Here's what I've gathered so far from using Little Brother.

When I first looked at it, I was like, "The heck are all these pictures and buttons for?!"
  • He's quiet! I never realized how loud the First Born was until I sewed on this little guy. Mr. LBC and I were able to watch a movie while I was sewing. Even Mr. LBC pointed out how quiet this machine is! He purrs like a kitten! 
  • The needle automatically goes down. When I first read about this, I couldn't figure out why this was even a thing. Why would I want my needle to always end up in the down position? One sewing session showed me how nice it is to not worry about making sure my needle is down before lifting the foot. And a simple push of a button lifts the needle to the up-most position. 
  • Speed regulator. I'll go ahead and admit I'm guilty of getting a little too fast and furious with my sewing machine. I don't know what it is, but there are times I want to sew that seam with the pedal to the floor going 90 mph! I was guilty of this when I first started learning how to throw on the potter's wheel too. I learned quickly that speed isn't always best for the final product (and I might have completely thrashed a few pots along the way to learning that! Lol). With this machine, I have 3 speed caps to choose from. The second setting is a comfortable pace - perfect for keeping those seams straight and fabric lined up while still letting me put my foot to the floor. 
  • He's not a workhorse. I pieced charity quilt blocks with Little Brother to try him out. I made HST's and I noticed he has a little trouble going over groups of seams. I've got to do a little tug and pull to help get him over the hump. I'm used to the First Born tackling plenty of seams and denim with no issues at all, so this was a bit disappointing for me. 
  • A 1/4 inch seam isn't the default. Silly me assumed it would be and started sewing, only to notice my seam allowances looked a little large. Holy moly, they were huge! I ended up looking to the manual and figuring out how to shift the needle over to create a 1/4 inch seam. The pain in the butt is that I have to shift the needle over EVERY SINGLE TIME I turn my machine on! I'm so forgetful, I'm bound to botch a few seams before it becomes burned into my brain.  
  • Tiny Throat Space. Although First Born doesn't have an enormous amount of throat space, I've quilted on her without issues related to space. Little Brother was definitely not designed with quilting in mind. I could see piecing a larger top getting cramped towards the end!
First Born is happy to be on our dining room table and quilting up a storm right now! :)
Overall, I like Little Brother. He has helped take some of the workload off of First Born, who, let's face it, isn't a spring chicken anymore. For simple sewing and block construction, I think he'll be my go-to machine, leaving quilting and more complicated sewing for First Born.

What about y'all? Are you a parent to an only sewing machine? Or do you have a brood of machines filling your house? 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Owl Tag Toy: A Finish

Howdy y'all! As hard I tried, I couldn't think of a clever owl-related pun for the title. Lol. I feel like I've been sewing up a storm lately (on the days I actually get to!) but don't have much progress to show. Today, however, I've got a finish to share!
Those wings are actually a little crinkly!

I was commissioned to make a tag toy for a baby. I didn't know much about these little things until I headed over to Pinterest and apparently these are awesome for babies. Or something. I'm not sure, but it was fun to make!
Snuggly owl belly! Love the little hearts on that white flannel

I was showed a picture of an owl tag toy from Etsy and was told to make something like it. So to the drawing board I went! I drafted a little pattern in no time at all (thank goodness for simple toys!). Things got a little fiddly at times as I was learning as I went, but after a prototype (and the surprise of ribbons being on the inside of the wings rather than the outside), I got this little bit of lovely put together!
I just want to snuggle into that minky fabric, so soft!
I hand embroidered the eyes and the beak is made out of the same ribbon as the 'feet'.
Lady owl has a beauty spot on her beak. :)
I tested out my tiny embroidery skills to make a label! I absolutely love it! It took a bit of extra time, but it's such a cute touch, I think it was worth it. :)
Tiny yet I love it!
From the sounds of things, I might be making a few more of these in the future! I thought of maybe making a tutorial for this if anybody was interested, so let me know in the comments if you would like to see a tutorial!

This is the first finish I can mark off my Quarter 2 Goals List for the Finish-A-Long!

Have a great week y'all! :)

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Finish-A-Long: Quarter 2 Goals!

Shew, the second quarter of the year has begun! Which means it is time to start brainstorming and goal setting for the next 3 months! My fabric buying skidded to an impromptu stop earlier last quarter, but I still have fabric from my stash to work with so I'm going to keep sewing as much as the stash will let me! :) So here's my list, y'all. I'm placing my 'have to finish this quarter' goals first and the further down the list a goal is, the less pressing it is for it to be completed.

1.) Commission Baby Quilt

(Sorry, no picture yet!)

After finishing the Isabella Quilt, my Mom either took a picture or took the actual quilt to work and showed it off to her friends before popping it in the mail. Suddenly, everybody wants LBCQ to make them something! This order is for a quilt like the Isabella quilt with a different color palette. My client picked out the fabrics and after cutting them and laying them out, I didn't have a good feeling about it. My Mom came over and looked and agreed: it just wasn't working. So the fabric was sent back to my client to let her see and have the final say. If she likes it, I'll press forward. If not, some things will be swapped out before progress is made.

2.) Baby Tag Toy
So soft and fuzzy!
This is actually for the same person that wants the quilt I believe. They saw a cute little tag toy on Etsy and asked if I could make something similar. "Sure" was barely out of my mouth before most of the supplies showed up at my doorstep. I'm actually really looking forward to making this one, I think drafting a little pattern and trying something new will be fun!

3.) Charity Baby Quilt
You've seen a few peeks of this one lately. The top is all done and I'm hoping to possibly get started on piecing the backing today!

4.) Scrap Vortex Quilt
These blocks just keep coming back all the time, time to get them finished up!
I started these scrap vortex blocks a while back, back when Crazy Mom Quilts did a Quilt Along last year! I knew I wasn't going to make a whole quilt of these blocks, but I have a plan for how I want to do these. I think the Kona Coal is really going to make those scrappy blocks pop!

5.) Hexie Quilt
It's hard to tell that this fabric is white on white, but I think those hexies will look great against it. :)
These hexies are the product of a hurt back in February. I may have to make quite a few more before I can fiddle with the design in my head, but I have all the supplies (background and plenty of scraps for hexies!) to make this top come into existence. :)

6.) Alison Glass

I just want to hug this fabric all the time. The rainbow goodness is just fantastic!
You may remember that I got a fat quarter bundle of Alison Glass fabric for Christmas from my parents and I was absolutely over the moon about it! It sits proudly on my fabric shelf just waiting to be turned into a beauty. I actually have two pattern ideas in mind (and may be able to squeeze both of them out of this bundle!) but I haven't been able to get the Essex Linen I want for the first pattern. I'm still deciding on a background fabric for the second pattern, but until those fabrics magically find their way to my sewing room, this goal is a long loooooong shot. 

7.) Notched Baby Quilt

Seriously, check out that Notched tutoiral, the block is awesome!
I was a lucky blogger last year. I think I won 3 or 4 giveaways in all! One win was this bundle of solids that you may remember from a huge free block blog hop last summer. I have planned to make Yvonne of Quilting Jetgirl's Notched Block using her free tutorial. I'm thinking I'll need more white fabric, but again, unless the fabric fairy pays me a visit, I may just get this one partially started.

Man, that seems like an overwhelming amount of goals, but I love having a game plan in place. And since there's no penalty for not meeting all the goals I set by the end of the quarter, there's no reason I can't shoot for the stars! :) I'm linking up with SloStudio for this quarter. Head on over and join the goal setting fun, there's plenty of chances to win some cool prizes and see some awesome projects! 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Throwback Thursday: The Quilt I Wish I Could Change

Please ignore all the laundry in the floor and instead pay attention to our devilishly handsome cat. Lol.
Howdy y'all, it's that time of the month again! That's right, Throwback Thursday is upon us once again! This month, I'm sharing the only quilt I'm not particularly proud of. And what frustrates me even more is this quilt was made for my mother.
It's like Tetris with fabric!
After making all the kid quilts for Christmas 2014, my Dad approached me and asked me to make a quilt for my Mom. He said he would pay for the supplies and throw in some extra for my time. I would have made it without being given a dime, but it was a nice plus. :)
If only I could go back, I would change that awful quilting job! This quilt (and my Mom) deserved more!
It all went downhill from there. I struggled to find a layout I liked so I winged it (of course). And honestly, the result isn't that bad. But I'm furious with myself over the quilting. It's just...meh. And there's a gigantic pucker on the back. The quilter that I am now would seam rip and fix it before it left my sewing room. The quilter I was back then was apparently okay with it. Ugh!

I have plans to make another quilt for my Mom eventually. But then, I want to make a quilt for my Dad too! Maybe one for the two of them? Hmmm... decisions, decisions! Lol. Anyway, that wraps up my Throwback Thursday post. Head on over to A Quarter Inch From the Edge to check out all the quilts linked up! :)

Saturday, April 2, 2016

OMG April: Charity Quilt

Howdy y'all! I can't believe we are already in April! As fast as time is flying by, that means another goal setting party over at Red Letter Quilts for One Monthly Goal. Honestly, I wasn't really sure what to pick this month. Most of my time lately has been dominated by quilt commissions, leaving less time for my typical sewing. And when I do have time for me-sewing, I'm usually scratching away in my little design notebook dreaming up projects that I don't have the supplies for. I can't decide if that's a good problem or not!

After a little brain storming, I think I found something that I have all the supplies for and I'm excited to get it finished this month! I started this charity quilt last month when I needed a breather and some mindless sewing. I've got part of the top pieced, so this month I want to finish piecing the top, get it quilted up and bound. Then the journey of finding it a home!

Happy stitching!