It’s been awhile…but I got my groove back!

I finally broke out of my crafting funk!  Anyone still here to read about it?

I decided to make Kiarda her first big quilt (I made her a small floor quilt before she was born for tummy time and the like).  The focus fabric is the paisley that I used to make her room decor stuff.  I’ve had this pattern and fabrics hanging around since before she was born, and I figured now was a good time to make it for her.  It took about 20 hours total.  I’m particularly pleased with how my binding came out (save the one off miter on the back by the label, the only one that got photographed, go figure!).  I used Sharon Schamber’s gluing method, and MAN, that binding is damn near perfect.  I’ll be using it every time – it’s so worth the results!

Kiarda loves her new quilt!  She got all excited this morning when I gave it to her.  She proceeded to dance on it, roll all over it, pretend to go to sleep on it, and just be silly on it.  While she likes to get tucked in on the couch, she still doesn’t want blankets in her crib, so she’s not currently using the quilt for covers at sleep times.  Ah well…in due time.

Here are a few pictures of the silliness:

She’s got a pretty good downward dog, dontcha think?

The label. I decided at the last minute to use some of the leftover binding around the label, and I like how it turned out!  “Futterflies” is how Kiarda says “butterflies” right now, and it seemed appropriate given the backing fabric.

I also found a mini quilt – likely a round robin quilt in progress, from the looks of the piecing – in my UFO pile tonight.  I think I inherited this from somehwere, because I can’t for the life of me place where it came from.  It did have the coordinating fabrics with it to continue adding onto the center.  I opted to just square it up as is, quilt it, and bind it.  I’m pleased with my binding, but I’m still figuring out what the “magic” strip length is so that I can machine stitch down the back of it and not have too much extra overhang.  I went with 2.25″ on this one, and I think 2 1/8″ woudl be perfect.  Ah well.

Again, I didn’t piece it.  It did lay flat, though, so that’s good.  It came out ok overall though!
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I got tagged

Toni tagged me for a blog meme. I haven’t done memes on this blog (I don’t think) but I figure this one might be helpful for potential swap partners. She tagged me with the Honest Scrap Award! All I need to do for part 1 is reveal 10 facts about myself that I haven’t necessarily shared with anyone.
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1. I studied abroad in Lyon, France, when I was in college. I got to fence while I was there, too – and my salle was only about three blocks from my apartment!

2. I have the uncanny ability to estimate my grocery total within $5 when I hit the checkout. I don’t keep track of prices while I shop, either.

3. Every Tuesday my co-workers and I have “Fantasy Sex Day.” We each pick a celebrity that we’re going to sleep with for the week. It’s loads of fun. You can’t repeat people within a 6-month period, and you can specify someone at a specific point in time (e.g. Leonardo di Caprio in “The Beach” but not in “Titanic).

4. One of the neatest conversations I ever had was with a homeless guy in Rome. We sat on the street corner and talked about life for over an hour.

5. I played French horn for almost ten years.

6. I *love* watching the Olympics, almost the point of obsession.

7. I’m a beer snob even though I don’t drink beer.

8. Going to a male OB/GYN doesn’t weird me out.

9. I love all things handwork – hand quilting, hand applique, embroidery – but not cross stitch. It drives me batty.

10. My DH and I are both online gamers.

Now, I must list 5 addictions:
1. The internet
2. Cheese, peanut butter, and chocolate (hey, they’re all foods!)
3. Fabric
4. Collecting kitchen gadgets
5. Sleeping in/taking naps

I’m not going to tag anyone (not even sure if I have five readers here?!?!), but feel free to fill them out as a comment. 😀

Hawaiian quilt, part II

I finished the applique, yay! It went much faster than I expected, as well as turning out better than expected. I will get pictures up this week. I need to get it basted so I can start quilting it!

AAQG Show

The Austin Area Quilt Guild biennial show was this weekend. There were lots of great quilts, including many made by friends and fellow bee-members. I did some volunteer work, including check-out at the end which was crazy hectic. My mom came down on Saturday from Dallas for the show. She behaved herself well overall, but some things are just never going to change…

I found multicolored variegated embroidery floss, which made me very happy! I also got three more mini wholecloth pre-printed quilt tops, a Halloween embroidery pattern, and a needleworked scissor case handmade by a guild member and sold in the boutique (all proceeds go to the guild). I’ll put pictures up tomorrow, as the camera is currently dead and I need to look for the extra batteries.

Here are a few of the quilts. I didn’t get pictures of all of them (there were more than 400!), but I got quite a few and put them up in a Photobucket album.

Here was the Best In Show. It also won Excellence in Design and 1st place in the Art Quilt Category. It was made by Bill Horne, who works at The Quilt Store here in Austin. He’s the first male quilter to win a BIS in Texas!

Here are my two quilts! I met my goal of not getting reamed by the judges. I have a few minor things to work on but overall I got good comments. I even got a “lovely hand stitching” from a judge who is known to have a critical eye for handquilting! Whee!

(My little one blended into the grey curtain, bah.) Not a good picture – can’t see the wholecloth design! Oh well.

Here are my favorite two – the picture came out small on one of them, though:

Here’s a close-up:

This Hawaiian quilt got Excellence in Hand Quilting and 1st in the large applique cateogory. This is my long-term quilting goal – to make a Hawaiian quilt. I can only hope it will be as intricate and beautiful as this one:

Show Quilts…DONE!

Yay! The Austin Area Quilt Guild show is this weekend. Colorblind Coffee will be entered under the handquilting category, and Steely Sun will be under the kit category. I just finished putting the sleeve on CBC tonight.

Label:
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It’s done!
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Close-up of quilting on front:
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Close-up of border quilting design:
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Everyone seems to like the quilting pattern viewed from the back of the quilt:
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Steely Sun. It’s only 16″ square!
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Close-up of design and quilting:
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Whee!

Three noteworthy things from the weekend:

I got Jöran back! He’s all spiffed up and ready to go now. *cheers* I haven’t had a chance to see how he’s running, but I will tomorrow. I’m glad to have him back. While I love Jenny, my seams are waaaaay more accurate on Jöran.

I finished quilting Cookies & Cream! I am going to block it and get the binding made and sewn on the front tomorrow. It’s almost done, and there is still three and half weeks until the show. Yay!

Only five more blocks to embroider for a siggy swap I’m doing. They’re coming along quickly!

Sunflower Quilt

Yay, I can finally post this! 😀 I made a mini quilt for Toni, as life has thrown her a few curveballs lately. I used this block for a birthday block swap, and I knew she’d like it…but in a mini quilt form! She called me today to say that it had arrived safely. 😀

I didn’t realize that I didn’t get a picture of the whole quilt (DOH) but you can get the general idea from the close-up pictures I did get. It is hand-embroidered and hand-quilted. It was also my first attempt at mitered borders, and they came out well overall.
Quilting close-up:

I added the yellow running stitch for an accent that wouldn’t overpower the center:

Backing: