Sunday, March 31, 2013

Let's Get Acquainted! Monday Link Up Party

I am honored to be hosting the Let's Get Acquainted Monday Link Up Party this week! Beth from Plum & June started the Let's Get Acquainted series last year and I have met so many great friends through the blog hop and the link parties!

I didn't have a ton sewing time this past week, since my husband was home. I did manage to complete the Spool Mini-Quilt from the Liberty Love, while he was working on homework!

I felt really inspired after reading the comments in last week's Girl Friday Sews Blog Hop post. After reading everyone's suggestions for personalizing work spaces, I decided that I needed to spruce up the beige walls in my sewing room. I think the Spool Mini-Quilt will make a great addition to the empty space above my ironing board. I fell in love with this pattern when I saw the measuring tape borders in the book photo!

It took me a few hours to find measuring tape fabric that was a color scheme that I liked and that was still available for purchase! I followed the pattern almost exactly. I did add a little 1.5" border on the top and bottom. It was fun picking out colors for the spools of thread. "Tangled Stripe in Red" from Rendevous is my favorite! It looks very thread-like.

I appliqued a spool on the back with Heat 'n Bond and then stitched the applique down with the blanket stitch on my Simplicity Quilter's Classic. I embroidered a needle and thread on top of the spool. The embroidery didn't turn out quite how I imagined, but it will do! When adding the hanging pockets, I used the How to Hang a Mini Tutorial at Mama Love Quilts. As soon as I get a dowel rod, I will be hanging this colorful mini above my ironing board!

What have you been up to?

Here are the rules for the link-up party:
  1. Link up any recent sewing/quilting post. 
  2. In your post or on your blog, please include either a text link or a button letting people know about this link up. 
  3. Visit at least the two bloggers who link up before you and everyone who visits you from this post. 
  4. When the link asks for your name, tell me your favorite candy. My current favorite is Cadbury Eggs. I made Cadbury Egg Cupcakes this weekend and I am pretty sure I have met my sweets quota for the year!
>>>>>Had to remove link-up because of technical difficulties! 2/1/2016 10:36AM<<<<<

I hope everyone had a great day! Thank you for linking up! Be sure to check out Plum & June for future Let's Get Acquainted Link Ups & to see her beautiful work!

Fabrics Used: Border: Tape Measure (Tailor Made) Background:  Crosshatch in White (Architextures) Spool Ends: Crosshatch in Black (Architextures), Haystack in Brown (Madrona Road), Tonal Dot Black (Gallery Fiori) Spool Centers: Tangled Stripe in Red (Rendezvous), Dots in Yellow (Juicy Blossoms), Running Stitch Turquoise (Lush), Chevron Medium Tonal Green, Tangled Stripe in White (Rendezvous) Backing: Alphabet in Yellow (Type) Binding: Foulard Fabric in Charcoal (Washi)

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Starburst Quilt Finish

Starburst Quilt | 76"x76" | Fabrics Listed Below

I am very happy to have completed the Starburst quilt, my first finish of 2013! I made this quilt during the Starburst QAL, hosted by Melissa at Happy Quilting. At 76"x76", it is the perfect size for snuggling. It is very cuddly! Since the background is so dark, my coffee probably won't be attracted to it either. Win! I love this quilt and I am a selfish quilt hoarder, so this quilt will remain in my house. :)

This quilt was all about playing with color! The only given on this quilt was that I was going to use the 4.5 yards of Robert Kaufman's Quilter's Linen in Midnight that I already had on my shelf. I bought it for another project, but it was a little brighter than anticipated.

The inspiration for the colors I used in the stars was actually from Pink Castle Fabrics Stash Club. I loved how the first three months (pink, aqua/turquoise and navy) looked together on my shelf. When I started pulling fabrics and noticed how beautiful the green looked against the navy in Andalucia (by Patty Young), I decided to use lime green as well. 

Other colors schemes I considered: For inspiration, I looked at several fabric lines with a navy base. I also considered Red/White/Aqua or Pink/Aqua.

Quilt Top Fabric:
Background: Quilter's Linen Midnight (Robert Kaufman)
Pinks: Metro Living Circles Fuchsia (Robert Kaufman) • Heath in Light Pink (Alexander Henry) • Squiggle in Pink (Benartex) • Mystery Pink (Lost the selvedge!)
Blues: Jester in Aqua (Michel Miller) • Sketch in Aqua (Timeless Treasures) • C5005 Blue (Riley Blake Designs) • Mezzanine in Teal (Free Spirit Fabrics)
Greens: Tiny Flower in Citron (Michel Miller) • Dotted Argyle in Green (Simon + Kabuki)  • Dot n' Square in Citron (Michael Miller) • Sari in Lime (Dear Stella)
(7 of the 12 fabrics for the star are from Stash Club)

This picture is zoomable. It is really fun print!

Backing: Irving Street Flannel by Erin McMorris.
I found the backing fabric at QuiltHome, after receiving a "20% Off Flannel" coupon from their email newsletter. I liked how the bright pink was so different than the midnight blue I chose for the quilt background. The windows in the little town have little spots of green and aqua, just like the stars. I also like the story it creates. It makes me smile to think of the quilt top as the night sky over a sleeping city.

Other backings I considered:  Out to Sea by Sarah Jane (Nautical/Star connection, but nothing felt right... even though the mermaids were tempting!), Moon Phase Polkadot in Light Blue or Star Charts in Light Blue from Lizzy House's Constellation (Star connection, but too much blue)

Quilting: I used Pellon Nature's Touch 100% Cotton Batting.

I did a basic 4-inch grid in the background. A 4-inch grid allowed me to quilt straight(ish) lines without any markings. For the most part, I used the seams and star points as my guides. I echo quilted the stars and the shapes within the stars.

This is the first quilt I have completed with my new machine, the Janome HD-1000.  It is missing some features that I learned to rely on (e.g. the "Needle Down" function), but the better stitch quality of the Janome makes up for it! I had a much less frustrating quilting experience. One of the big problems with my Simplicity was that the thread would constantly jump out of the last thread guide. The last thread guide on the Janome is constructed differently, so that wasn't an issue at all.

Binding: Running Stitch in Lime
I asked for all of your help on this one and the result was overwhelmingly in favor of Running Stitch in Lime. It was my husband's binding of choice as well! It really works well as a binding! The lines on the fabric are 1/4" apart and I was able to keep my ladder stitches a lot more even than usual.

Conclusion: I love this quilt pattern! There are cutting instructions for three different quilt sizes at Happy Quilting. I think it might also be fun to make a baby quilt out of just one block. You can see all the gorgeous versions of this quilt pattern at the Starburst Parade and the Happy Quilting QAL Flickr group! Everyone did such a great job!

she can quilt
I will be linking up with: Fabric Tuesday @ Quilt StoryTGIFF Friday hosted by Marit @ Sew, Love, Live and Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts. I can't wait to see everyone's finishes for this week!

This quilt is also part of my 2013 Finish-A-Long Q1 list. 1/5 projects complete.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Girl Friday Sews Blog Hop + a Giveaway! [CLOSED]

This post is part of the Girl Friday Sews Blog Hop. Giveaway is at the bottom of the post! 

My work space! This photo is a big reminder that I need to put an actual photo in my picture frame. :D
Fabric Mutt
I've always had a mild obsession with office supplies. When I was in elementary school, one of the highlights of my year was when the American Girl Magazine "Back-to-School Edition" arrived in the mail. There were so many photos of cute and colorful school supplies. Twenty+ years later, I still cannot ignore the call of colorful paper clips or pretty tape! I always feel a strong impulse to buy a new, pretty pen and planner when I start a new chapter in my life.

While I had plenty of fun office supplies in my possession, my work area was a complete mess. I hardly ever worked in there, because it felt stressful to be in the room. Wires and paper everywhere! Last month, I decided to make my office a happier place to work. The above picture is the result. I love my office now and I enjoy working in there.

One of my favorite additions to my happier office took less than 30 minutes of my time. I made a simple mouse pad, using the tips at More Misadventures. This mouse pad is definitely an upgrade over my previous "generic sunset" mouse pad and it puts me in a good mood every time I look at it. Small things can make a big difference! 

Mousepad Front & Back
Given my love of office supplies, it is no surprise that I am very excited to be part of the Girl Friday Sews Blog Hop hosted by the very creative and talented Heidi @ Fabric Mutt! This blog hop is all about making the places where we learn and work beautiful. The talented ladies on the blog hop have planned many great sewing projects to organize and beautify your workspace. I look forward to using their tutorials to add even more of a personal touch to my office and sewing areas. I hope you will join us!

Blog Hop Schedule

Mon., March 11 -- Blog Hop Launch @ Fabric Mutt (Craftsy giveaway: free class)
Mon., March 18 -- Blog Hop Promo @ From Pixels to Patchwork (Pink Chalk Fabrics giveaway: $25 certificate)
Mon., March 25 -- Blog Hop Promo with Tutorial @ Fabric Mutt
Mon., April 1 -- Heidi Staples @ Fabric Mutt
Tue., April 2 -- Kristy @ Quiet Play (Pink Chalk Fabrics giveaway: $25 certificate)
Wed., April 3 -- Becca Bryan @ Bryan House Quilts
Thur., April 4 -- Amanda Woodruff @ A Crafty Fox (Westwood Acres giveaway)
Fri., April 5 -- Lee Heinrich @ Freshly Pieced
Mon., April 8 -- Svetlana Sotak @ SOTAK Handmade
Tue., April 9 -- Beth @ Plum and June (Sew Me a Song giveaway: fabric bundle)
Wed., April 10 -- Taryn @ From Pixels to Patchwork 
Thur., April 11 -- Lori Hartman @ Lori H. Designs (Fabricworm giveaway: Robotic fabric bundle)
Fri., April 12 -- Leanne @ She Can Quilt
Mon., April 15 -- Blog Hop Recap at Fabric Mutt

There is a Flickr group to share projects completed with the blog hop. If you would like to help spread the word, here is the code to add a button to your website:

The generous sponsors of this blog hop are Craftsy, Fabricworm, Pink Chalk Fabrics, Sew Me a Song, and Westwood Acres (see above for giveaway schedule). I have purchased from all these shops numerous times and I only have great things to say about each of them.

Now for the giveaway:

Pink Chalk Fabrics is one of my go-to shops for online fabric shopping.  Things I love about them: 1) Amazingly fast shipping. 2) Gorgeous modern prints (I want it all!).  3) Great selection of Kona Solids and Essex Linen. 4) Good selection of notions, including purse making supplies. 5) Their email newsletter is one of my favorites, because they always share great projects from around the web.

They are also very generous! Pink Chalk Fabrics is offering one lucky winner a $25 Gift Certificate to their store!


Leave one comment telling me how you have personalized your workspace or your favorite organization tip for the sewing room or office. Or you can just say hi! Don't forget to add your email address if you are a No-Reply or Anonymous Commenter(NOTE: Comments using Wordpress & Google+ logins don't always automatically include email addresses)

 International entries are welcome. I'll choose a winner via Random.org on Friday, March 22nd at 12pm CST. The winner will be contacted by email.

The winner is comment #43, Gabriela. Congratulations Gabriela and thank you to everyone who entered! You all shared some great tips!

My Answer to the Question- A couple of tips: (1) Command Cord Organization hooks changed my life! You can barely see any wires under my desk(2) One of my big realizations while looking through office inspiration pictures, is that other people don't have less clutter than I do...they are just better at hiding it! Part of my office rejuvenation involved making sure everything had a place. Small or infrequently used objects are in boxes by category (mailing, banking, etc) and frequently used supplies (cameras, wires, etc.) are in fabric baskets. I got rid of my tiny little boxes full of paper clips, staples, etc. and put them all in a wooden box with dividers (Hobby Lobby). It looks better, everything is easier to find and it cleared a little bit of space on my drawer-less desk!

Good luck! Thanks to Heidi for hosting this fun blog hop! I hope you will follow along on the hop and be sure to check back here on April 10th to check out my tutorial!

I'm Linking up at Plum and June's Let's Get Acquainted Monday Link Up which is hosted by Busy Bee Quilts this week!
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