Friday, June 29, 2012

More Zakka

Sometimes, when I'm surrounded by lots of bigger projects that I'm not motivated to work on, I'll do a one sit project. You know, the kind that you can cut, sew and finish in a couple of hours. I thought that the organizer from the Zakka Style book would be just that. In fact, it took many, many sits, way too much frogging, and was a little frustrating. I got it to this stage:

but realized I hated the binding, and the zipper I wasn't fond of either.

It sat for a few weeks. Then, in a burst of "I want to finish something", I ripped out the binding and zipper, and started fresh. This is the final version. I'm so much happier with it. So much, that I'm considering making another. (I think, next time, I won't use linen for every. stinking. piece. Those sides are thick!)

The potholder project, on the other had, was definitely a one sitter. I've been saving this Japanese veggie linen fat quarter for over a year, waiting for the right project. Love. I made it a tad bigger than the pattern, because I could, and chose only to feature the veggie fabric and one strip of linen, again, because I could. The back has pockets to slide your hands in, but I may just use it as a hot pad. So cute! So Zakka! In keeping with the Japanese theme, I've got a tiny slip of sushi fabric that I've been hoarding ~ it might makes it's way into another potholder!

If you don't have the book yet, look on my side bar and click on over to Amazon and check it out. I really think you'll like it!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

T Shirt

A few months ago, I was contacted by a very nice lady who wanted a t shirt quilt made for her son. He was graduating in June, and she wanted a shirt made from all of his sports t shirts and jerseys she had saved over the years. At first, I was hesitant. I've made quilts for other people, but they've been quilts I wanted to make for them, not something they asked for. And I certainly hadn't been paid either. After consulting my friend Linda (who tried to talk me out of it!) I went ahead and said yes.

Over the next several weeks, I met with the mom (and dad) a few times, and talked with her often.  Having just graduated Kyle last year, I knew what an emotional time it was. She shed a few tears along the way, and I got a little weepy myself. Here's the finished quilt:

And here's the label she wanted for the back

And this is a picture of him at the reveal (he's the one on the right ~ behind the pole)

The quilt was a huge success, I'm happy (and relieved) to say. If you look in the bottom right of the picture, you'll see a pillow I made with some leftover jerseys. Stephen asked if he could sleep with it that night. Awww. Oh, and the best news ~ son #2 graduates next year, so I get to do it again!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


In the Baltimore Modern Quilt Guild, Maria and Daniella are our vice presidents in charge of fun. (We made all of the board members vice presidents, so that everyone will have a great title to include on their resumes!) In addition to swaps, bees, challenges, etc, they run our Robins. Back in January, we started a Round Robin, where each participant started with a 10" square. Over the next 5 months, the square traveled to other members, and became bigger and bigger. At our last meeting, we had our big reveal of all of our quilts. This one is mine! 

I love it! The greens will go perfectly in the quilt cave! (To see all of the Round Robin quilts, go here.)

In July, we're starting a Row Robin (although, I think I'm going to lobby to call it a Row Raven ~ after all, we are in Baltimore!)

This time, we're starting with a row, 9" x 36". Since this Raven will finish in December, I thought about doing something Christmasy. But I'm just not feeling it yet. And, all of the cute Christmas/Holiday fabric I want isn't out yet. I was talking to Dawn about it, and she said she might do spools. Spools??!! Brilliant! Totally stealing that idea. (I told her I'm stealing it. I didn't necessarily ask her though. I don't think she'll mind. My spools and her spools will look totally different.)

Here's my starting row of spools (and if Dawn wants to steal mine, she's totally welcome to!)

Now, I just need to wait for the big reveal in December!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Swap Stingy

One of the things I love about the Baltimore Modern Quilt Guild is that there is always something going on. We have swaps, bees, round robins, Block of the Month, and lots of other challenges. For our July meeting, I'm particularly excited, because we're  swapping Journal Covers. If you've been around here for a while, you know I adore journal covers. I like making them, I like looking at them, I like using them. I have a daily journal, a guild journal, a travel journal and a sketch book (with grid paper!) journal. This was going to be an easy swap for me. Immediately, I knew I wanted to incorporate hexies and linen. I pulled out some of my favorite scraps, made some hexies, sewed them up, and this is my journal cover. 

I love it. Love love love it. I love it so much that I don't think I can part with it. Swap stingy. That's me.

So, I made another one. I hauled out my scraps, and started pulling out the pinks. I have no idea why. I'm not a particularly pink person. So there I was, happily sewing up scraps, and realizing, I don't think I can part with this one either. Look how pretty it is!  Swap stingy again.

I showed them both to Katie and shared my dilemma. Hmmm, she agreed, I see the problem. Can't you just make an ugly one? 

Here's the thing. I don't think so. Not that I'm incapable of sewing up ugly. I'm very capable of sewing ugly. I've sewn plenty of ugly. There's just something about journal covers that makes them all beautiful to me.

I don't know what I'm going to do. I've go 2 weeks to figure it out. 

Did you ever make something for someone else and decide to keep it? Did you feel guilty? Did you make them something even more fabulous? Please share!

eta: a day has passed since I wrote this. I think I'm going to put them both in the swap, and let the recipient choose.Share the love, right?

Friday, June 22, 2012

Gardening and Farming

 Remember this post?  I finally go that one quilted up! 

I really like it! I decided it echo quilt around all the squares. Simple, but it works.

In other gardening news, I made a few Farmer's Wife blocks.

I started this little project a year ago, when I joined this QAL. I mean, really, how hard can it be, making 2 little 6" blocks a week for one year. Not hard, really. Just, I don't know. I think I've learned that I'm not good at "a thing a day" type activities. I'm more apt to power through 8-10 at a time. Or maybe I need to do the 21 days in a row to make it a habit thing. So far, I have maybe a dozen of these little guys. Will I make all 100+ blocks? We'll see. I do enjoy making them, and revisiting some favorite scraps. I'm just not going to put a time line on it.

And now, on to the "real" garden. Things are, eh. The tomatoes and onions are doing great. But my cucumbers and zucchini were a complete fail. I mean, really, who can't grow zucchini? I had to dig up the old plants (which never took hold) and start anew. And then the bunnies came. Goodbye peppers. Hello fence.

If you have any awesome gardening tips, please share. Clearly I need them!

Friday, June 15, 2012


If you're not from Bawlmer, I'll try to explain Hon Fest to you. Think John Waters. Think Hairspray.  “Hon”, short for Honey, is a classic Bawlmer term of endearment. HonFest is a local tradition. Hon embodies the warmth and affection bestowed upon our neighbors and visitors alike by historic working-women of Baltimore. HonFest is an annual celebration in honor of these women. (taken from the HonFest Website) HonFest is part dress up contest, part street fair. Tons of food, drink, shopping and people watching. Like this:

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Bee Blocks

Mid June and I'm already finished with my bee blocks for Bee Vintage! Typically, I wait until the week, or even the day before they're due. Nikki and Tammie made it super simple for us this month, with a giant (15") churn dash, and a sweet pinwheel made of hsts.

Every time I get out my vintage sheets, I'm tempted to start more projects. I still have a Vintage Sheet Dresden to put together, plus a Vintage Sheet String Quilt. I really need to finish those first. It look like I may get my wish, with lots of quilting time this summer. (more on that later!)

Tonight is mindless sewing night (hubby has his band coming over for practice tonight, which means a full rock band practicing in the basement. Can't read or watch TV, so I plan on a lot of straight line stitching!) I think I'll revisit this:

My original plan was a string a day, March through May. Well, other projects jumped ahead so that didn't happen. I'm about 1/2 way through. About 40 blocks finished. I hope to knock out another dozen tonight.

There's been a lot of other sewing going on here, I just have to find some pictures on the 8 or so SD cards I have strewn on my desk.That's going to be a good time!