Friday, March 22, 2013

Anything Goes!

The pattern for the quilt top above is called "Anything Goes".  I put this little number together months ago and all it needed to complete it was borders attached.  When I got to this point, I didn't know what to use for borders so I put it away for "later" I tend to do so often.

I made a lap quilt so I could try the pattern out and make sure I liked it before committing to making a bed size version.  I like was fun...easy...and fairly quick to put together...but who knows when I will decide to do it again.  I get bored easy! :)

This was truly a SCRAPPY quilt.  There's actually a fabric in it that is about 15 years old...along side a fabric just purchased last summer.

Since this is my year to focus on being thrifty, I am attempting to finish all of my UFO's.  So...I pulled this back out and looked through the stash again...intent on finding SOMETHING to use as my borders.

IT IS FINISHED...all 48" x 64" of it!  Again...there is no rhyme or reason as to the fabric choices...but then again...that's why I love quilting so much!  Quilting truly reflects least it reflects my chaos!!!  When I think of each individual family member, we can't hide the fact that we are all whackadoos!  How in the world did so many unique (that's putting it mildly) and colorful personalities resulted from one gene pool (along with a few adoption agencies along the way).  Yet, when you throw us all together, we make up one pretty solid family unit.  We have each other's backs...and always will.  We may not be able to stand each other for extended lengths of time...but we love each other fiercely and have learned to play nice together...just like the scraps and vast array of colors in a quilt top.

Okay...that's enough serious observations for one day!  Time to get back to some more fun...

Quilt on my friends until next time!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Big Dogs Require Big Beds

My adult daughters have not followed my example of owning little foo-foo have GIANTS!  I warned them that EVERYTHING dog related would at least triple in cost when intended for a big dog versus a small dog.  Did they listen?  NO! :) :) :)

I got a call the other day from one of them complaining about the cost to purchase a dog bed large enough for a big dog to lounge without falling off the edges on all sides.

Mom to the rescue....

A quick look through my fabric stash and I located this very colorful piece of canvas type, thick, sturdy fabric.  Hummm....maybe not the colors they were expecting, but's free! :) :)

I ended up making an approximately 40" square dog bed.  I still have exactly enough fabric left over to make one more matching dog bed but will wait until I have something to stuff it.  The one above is stuffed with recycled stuffing.  My one daughter takes after me in some ways...she has saved all the stuffing from inside toys and bedding, etc., from the early days of puppy hood and teething.  (Smart girl if I do say so myself!)

Once my girls took the new bed to their home, I received the following pictures that evening of my happy grand-doggers each taking turns trying it out.

Sweet little Kiara...a boxer mix...

Sweet little Jackson...a pit bull mix....

And the newest (and last) addition to their home...

Precious little Bear...he is half German Shepherd and half Labrador Retriever...

These three GIANTS still bow down to my house full of little foo-foo dogs.  :)

One last photo taken of Kiara and Bear sharing the new bed while they both slept peacefully....

They probably won't be able to share for too much longer.  Oh well...maybe I'll be able to finish the next one by that time.

Happy Sewing everyone!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Birthday Blocks Heading to Wisconsin

It's that time again.  The Birthday Block Swap group I'm participating in has only one member with a birthday during the month of March.

Laurie in Wisconsin had requested we make her blocks in Brown, Blue, and Tan or Cream as the neutral.

I had a difficult time mailing off these blocks because I fell in love with them.

This first block is named.....Heartwarming.  It is designed by Pam Buda.

This next block in named.....Old Town Star.  It is designed by Katie Blakesley.

I used the same fabrics to construct both blocks, even if the lighting in the photos looks otherwise.

The patterns and directions for both blocks was found in the Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks Collector's Edition, vol. 5.

I need to check the calendar, but I believe there are two birthdays during the month of April.  I've really enjoyed participating in the block swap so far.  It has given me an opportunity to play around and experiment with blocks that otherwise I may have just dreamed about making "one day". :)

Friday, March 15, 2013

Fabric Scraps Make Great Dog Bed Stuffing

I do my best to be a responsible, thoughtful person and recycle whenever possible. :)

Whenever I have scraps of fabric (not suitable or big enough for quilting) and clipped threads, I put them in a big plastic bag and save them to stuff dog beds.  My doggies prefer this type of stuffing versus poly-fil, etc because it's easier for them to scratch around and rearrange the stuffing to make it "just right" before they lay down for the night.

My bag of scraps multiplied into two bags of scraps rather quickly these past several months, especially with Kirsten making so many Christmas blankets using fleece.

So, before this got out of hand I figured I better make new beds.

Out came the ugly orange skateboard flannel fabric that was given to me......(Really!  What else would I ever use this for anyway!?) :) :)

What shocked me was just how far these scraps went in filling up dog beds!  The scraps seemed to multiply before my eyes! :)

Scrap bags are once again empty...ready to start filling once again (which I have).  Doggies are tickled pink with their new beds.  Life is good!

By the way....I'm still using up old spools of thread....

Just look at my collection tin....


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

24 Log Cabin Blocks - What do I do now???

Some things in life offer us too many options.  I finished 24 Log Cabin blocks using Batiks.  There is no more fabric.  I can't make any more blocks.  It is what it is!

Now what do I do with them?

1st Possibility....

I only used 16 of the 24 blocks just to get an idea what the layout would look like.  Of course, I COULD have flipped the blocks and ended up with the darker sides meeting in the center.  That would have given it a different look altogether.

2nd Possibility....

I only used 12 of the 24 blocks to see how this pattern looks (my knees are starting to hurt, can you tell I'm starting to rush the puzzle piecing experiment)?

3rd Possibility....

My knees are really hurting now...only took the time to lay out 12 blocks again. :) :)

I showed these pictures to a few people to get their opinions...but I still wasn't completely in love with either choice.  I went to bed and dreamed of quilt block layouts. LOL  Then the next day, I had another idea.

4th Possibility....

My knees were rested so I shockingly played with all 24 blocks.

Then I decided to flip the blocks around one last time....

5th Possibility....

Pretty much everyone has chosen the last photo as their favorite.  I like this layout the best also, with the colors flipped in either direction.

I've not sewn the blocks together yet, but will soon.  I'm seriously considering adding borders to enlarge it to a Twin size quilt.  All in all I'm happy with this project.

Happy Quilting Everyone!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Pink & Purple Embroidery Baby Quilt Top

A couple blog posts ago, I shared one photo with you of 6 embroidery blocks I was turning into a baby quilt.  That's as far as I got...laying the 6 blocks together until  now. :)

I sewed them together and of course, it was way too small and needed borders.  I searched through my stash, and in one of my box of 2 1/2" strips, I located 4 matching pink strips (no more and no less...4 exactly!)

Still too small!  Cute...but small!

My mind starts whirling ideas around.  I had a few of the small 4-patch blocks and 2-patch blocks left over that were used in the construction of the top itself.

I started playing around....

I actually had 2 more of the little 4-patch blocks left but couldn't figure out a way to make them fit.  Time to search through my stash again.  The blocks are 3" wide so I can't use any of the strips I've pre-cut that are only 2 1/2" wide.

I looked through my collection of Fat Quarters.  I found a fabric that I thought would work and thankfully I had 2 FQ's just in case it took more than one.

What do you think?

Now...I'm quite pleased with the way it looks at this point...but I'm not thrilled with the finished size.  It measures 30" x 40".  That size is plenty big enough for a wall-hanging or a stroller quilt, etc. but not quite big enough to call a crib size.

What is your opinion?  Should I leave it "as is" and finish it?  Or should I possibly look for a third fabric (maybe in a coordinating, mottled lavender blender) and add one final border?  If I add another border, it will require a shopping trip (which I have held off from doing so far this new year...but I do have a Jo-Ann's gift card I received for Christmas I've been holding for an "emergency"!) :)

Decisions, decisions...I'm just not sure what to do!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Rustling Leaves Quilt Top FINISHED!

I think I can...I think I can....I think I can finish this quilt top!!

Pics of the last few blocks....

And when all the blocks are finally sewn together...the CENTER of the quilt top looks like this:

Next step is to measure the true width and length (from the center of the quilt) to cut the borders.  Kirsten was making faces as she "helped" me take the measurements. :) :)  I ask SO MUCH of my teenager!!!!

Borders are cut, sewn, and pressed....

Just sewing on the border took two days!  But the work was well worth it.  I'm so happy with my completed quilt top.  It ended up being approx. 89" x 97".

 Isn't she pretty!  I'm thrilled!  Yippee!! Woo Hoo!!!  It's finished!!  Time to do the Happy Dance (if my hip didn't hurt so bad!) LOL

Now it will be neatly folded and put away until I can get it quilted. :)