Monday, November 24, 2014

McCall's Quilting Magazine and a Meadowlark Giveaway!

My quilt is the one on top of the stack of quilts there!

Ladies and gentleman, I am in McCall's Quilting Magazine! I still can't quite believe it!

This is the closest I've gotten to being a "Covergirl" so far! As many of you know, I was working on some quilts that I wasn't able to share (this was for Market this past spring!) Well, I was designing and making quilts using Melanie Testa's fabric from her Meadowlark line put out by Windham Fabrics. I've been sitting on this news since this past spring - and now I can finally share it with you!

This was an exciting process, as I was able to see Melly creating the line, and then her excitement when Windham picked it up. It's a special feeling to be one of the first people to ever cut into, and create with a designer's first fabrics!

The Meadowlark line is Melly's way of raising awareness about the plight of the 20 Common Birds in Decline listed by the Audobon Society. She has a post about it on her blog!

The original name of this quilt is "Lark Star" for the Eastern Meadowlark on the list. For publishing reasons, the piece goes by the name "Starling" in the magazine. They are offering a FREE alternate pattern of the quilt in king size! (You can also order a kit of the 60.5"60.5" from them, that has the fabrics I used!)

"Starling" McCalls Quilting Jan/Feb 2015 (aka Lark Star)
I wanted to really be able to showcase Melly's fabrics, so I approached the design process asking myself "How can I show these fabrics as they are, and still cut them up and piece them?" The answer was "THINK BIG!" and I did. At 60.5"x60.5", the blocks in this quilt are 15" blocks! I might be biased (that's not a pun, I swear!), but I am in love with this quilt!

I have an AWESOME prize opportunity for a lucky reader! Melly has graciously arranged for me to be able to give away a fat quarter of every fabric from her line Meadowlark! That's 26 fat quarters my friends! To be eligible all you need to do is leave a comment telling me what your favorite common bird in your backyard is! Deadline for leaving a comment is Sunday, December 7th at 11:59pm. Winner will be announced Monday the 8th!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

I Spy a Chunky Wee Bag!

A fantastic trio of fabrics - not to mention that snazzy key chain!
I'm pretty excited to have just finished my first project for the Spool Stitch Corps! When the opportunity came up to try out the Chunky Wee Bag pattern, I immediately went for it! I mean, can a girl EVER have too many bags? (Husbands need not chime in here, thank you very much!) And boy, when I saw the fabrics that Spool sent - I was NOT disappointed!

The cutting directions are pretty straight forward. One thing it doesn't mention on the back, is that you will need some foam core board or the like for the bottom of the bag. The bag went together pretty quickly. I did do a test bag first (with my own fabrics) and I have to say, by the time I did the second one it went like a breeze. That means you still have plenty of time to knock some of these bags for CHRISTMAS!

When it says to slow down for those thick seams - DO IT! I didn't heed the warning (as usual) and broke a needle! Besides, slowing down while sewing my second bag for the thick seams (this is only an issue really at the very end, i.e. last seam sewn), helped to make sure I was keeping that nice quarter inch seam allowance.

Ready to get started?

Shopping List:

Chunky Wee Bag Pattern
Mini Houndstooth Fabric
Fox and Houndtooth glasses on grey
Betty's Red by Moda
Fusible Fleece

*Elastic hair tie and button or 4" of velcro
*Optional .25 yd canvas for extra strength in pockets (I just used the fusible fleece)
*You might want some plastic template material for the two different templates, but not required

Labeling each piece as I cut them really (REALLY) helped the project move along much faster. And just look at that glasses frames fabric! 

Racing stripe! As you can see, I went with the elastic hair tie fastener on this one, and I must say I do prefer it over the velcro option (personal choice!) You just need an elastic hair tie and a button of your choice.

I went ahead and put in the handy keychain ring tab as well. I will do the same when I make one of these for myself too, as I CONTINUALLY lose my keys to the dark recesses of the bottom of my purse.

Now isn't THAT a handsome bag? You can stop by Spool soon and see it!

There you have it! Now stop in Spool, or hop onto their online shop and get your materials for making the Chunky Wee Bag now!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Time keeps going...

Time is still moving. To me, it feels like time is rushing by at break neck speeds. Which is a complete contrast to how Mom is feeling these days. Doing chemo and radiation week after week, time drags on for her. The one good thing, is that so far, on weekends we seem to be able to get her rallied and eating. Yesterday she had a craving for chipped beef and gravy with biscuits. I ran and got the ingredients, came back and whipped it up. Mom ate a few of them, and then a couple hours later ate a couple more. Any of my friends can tell you, I love feeding people. So when someone who hasn't really eaten much all week starts to rebound and nourish themselves here, I feel a weird sense of accomplishment.

But that's not my only feeling of accomplishment this week! I finished up the last of the quilts for Melanie Testa too! The labels were all sewed on by 6:00 pm last night and I was happy to see the stack of them out on the new porch!

New porch! That's right! We had our open deck area completely redone and converted part of it into a screened in porch. On top of that porch are six solar panels, to go with the eighteen panels on the front side roof! And this past Wednesday our sofa for out there arrived and I am in love! I have spent most of my days out there, hand stitching and listening to Audible books.

I'm not the only one enjoying the porch either! Our strictly indoor kitties Zoey and Penny are enamored with the area. They even slept out there last night into the dark hours with mood lighting surrounding us.

I leave for a little vacation for Arizona on Wednesday, but for now I hear some Peppered Cottons calling my name to be whole cloth pieces! Have a great weekend!