Fabriholics Anonymous – January Check In

So far so good, but it hasn’t been easy.  I was doing really great up until last week.  I was staying busy working on projects that I already had fabric for.  I also signed up for several swaps.  I was pretty sure I would have what I needed  for the swaps and I figured that would keep me busy and out of trouble.  Then last week I got an unexpected order for a QAYG tote and the customer requested music notes on a portion of it.  I looked everywhere, but there wasn’t a music note to be found in my stash.  So off to my LQS I go.  Now, I did make it an exception that I could buy as needed for swaps or commissioned items.  And I did only get a quarter yard of the fabric that I needed.  So I didn’t break any rules.  But I sure took a long walk through temptation isle.  The hardest part was walking away from Catnap.  I love my LQS, but they aren’t the quickest to get new lines in usually.  I was very surprised to see Catnap on their shelves already.  At one point I had 4 bolts in my arms and I was heading to the cutting table, but I talked myself down from it.  I think the only thing that saved me was that they didn’t have a good sale going, that would have pushed me over the edge.

I decided that 6 (or rather 5 now) months from now I would like a before and after photo so that I can see the impact that this fabric fast has had on my stash.  So here are my before photos that I took the first week of January.

IMG_2169-2

IMG_2174-2

Yardage – The top shelf is charm packs and other precuts and bundles. Everything else is yardage that I can hopefully use for backings.

IMG_2172-2

1/2 yard or fat quarters organized by color.

I consider this to be a successful month for me and I hope it was for you as well.

Linking up with

FabAnon

Advertisements

ALYOF – January Finish

I can’t believe it’s already the last week of January.  Which means it’s time to post about my January goal for A Lovely Year of Finishes.  My goal was to completely finish my Riley Blake Challenge quilt.

IMG_2330-2

IMG_2332-2

Done!  It’s been mostly done for the last 2 weeks.  I was just really dragging my feet on sewing the binding down.  I normally do all my binding by machine.  When I first started quilting I didn’t care very much for hand sewing and I found this great tutorial on machine binding.  The more you use this technique the cleaner it looks and I’ve gotten pretty good at it.  For some reason though I wanted to try hand sewing the binding down on this quilt and I guess I was waiting for a “hand sewing mood” to make that happen.  Well, that finally happened and I got her finished last Friday.  I do like the invisible look of the hand sewing, but I feel as though it isn’t nearly as secure as it would be if I had used the machine binding technique.  Maybe that would change if I had more practice and time to improve my hand sewing technique.

Linking up with My Button

Swap Sewing

Most of my sewing lately has been swap sewing.

IMG_2283

I already posted about by addiction to the economy block.  I ended up making 100 of them.  That all started with the Fussy Square Block Swap.  Sign ups are closed for this round, but I’m sure there will be more rounds in the future.

IMG_2312

Next up was the Endless Polaroid Bitties Swap.  These are just as addictive as the economy blocks, maybe even more!  They go quicker than the economy blocks when you chain piece them.  The theme this round was woodland animals/nature.  Again, sign ups are closed on this one.  But keep an eye out for future rounds.

IMG_2320

This happy stack of scraps is for the Fabric Scrap Swap.  This is by far the easiest swap ever.

I am also signed up for The Sewing Room Swap.  I was super excited about signing up for this one.   It’s a blind swap where we make 2 items for our secret partners.  One large item, such as a sewing machine cover, tote, wall hanging, etc.  And a smaller item such as a pincushion or needle book.  I have my partner’s details and I’m ready to start sewing tomorrow on this one.

The last two swaps that I signed up for are still open for sign ups.  The Triple Zip Swap is a fun and easy swap.  Everyone uses the same free tutorial to make a triple zip pouch for their secret partner.  I participated in Round 1 and it was a fun make.  I also find that I use my triple zip pouch ALL THE TIME!  I use mine to keep my purse contents organized and it works perfectly.  I believe sign ups are only open until tomorrow, so hurry if you want to join.   And last, but certainly not least, the Secret Tote Bag Swap.  I have participated in both Round 1 and Round 2 of the Secret Tote Swap and both times received beautiful totes.  Sign ups are open until 1/31.  Come join the fun!

IMG_1376

Secret Tote Swap – Round 1 Received

IMG_1667

Secret Tote Swap – Round 2 Received

The last thing that I have been working on is prepping sheets to crochet into rag rugs.  I am finally ready to start crocheting!

IMG_2275

 

 

 

Thanks for reading!

Mara

Economy Block Addiction And A Giveaway

I had all these great plans to make all this progress on my WIP list.  I was doing pretty good too.  I managed to get several quilts quilted and bound (more on that later).  Before I could get any farther I found myself mesmerized by all these cute little blocks I kept seeing.  Every other blog in my feed was posting about them.  I’ve heard them referred to as Economy blocks, Fussy Square blocks and Square In A Square blocks.

IMG_2276

Aren’t they cute?  I’ve been making the paper pieced blocks, available at What the Bobbin?.  But you can also follow Rita’s instructions for regular piecing at Red Pepper Quilts.  Her quilts are just beautiful.  She has such a great eye for color.  Paper or regular piecing….. these block are a breeze to make.  And it was way fun going through my scrap bins to find fun fabrics to fussy cut.  So far I have made 35 blocks and everything was from my scrap bins, I haven’t touched my stash yet.

IMG_2278

IMG_2286

IMG_2283

My favorite block is the Siamese cat block (my Simon block).  It’s a little darker than the rest of the blocks, but I will find a place for him in some project.  I’m thinking maybe a zip pouch.

In addition to paper piecing like crazy I have also spent some time cleaning and organizing my sewing space.  I sew in my basement.  It’s an unfinished basement, but I have done what I can to make it more comfortable.  There is a ton of space and it works nicely for me.

IMG_2168-2

IMG_2170-2

While cleaning and organizing I pulled some fabric that is definitely not my taste anymore.  It’s beautiful and great quality quilting cotton, I just can’t see myself using it.  And since I wanted to start doing regular monthly giveaways on here I figured this would be a great start.

IMG_2289

The panel fabric is Angel and Fairies by Elizabeth Studio.  The blue fairy fabric is unknown, but there is an entire yard of it.  The selvage reads Fashion Fabric, nothing more.  They both have a high quality “feel” to them.  If you are interested in them just leave me a comment.  Next Friday, 1/24, I will pick a winner randomly and notify you by email.

Linking up with Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation and Finish It Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts

Catvent Pillows

IMG_2246-2

I have been a busy girl the last couple days, lots of quilting!  These pillow covers were first on the list.  The pattern is from Elizabeth Hartman’s Catvent Quilt Along that she hosted last December.   A new kitty everyday for 25 days.  I came to the party a little late and only ended up making 4 of the kitties.  They were a fun make.  I just wasn’t up for a whole quilt.

IMG_2252-2

I had been wanting to try concentric circles with my free motion foot so I gave it a try.  Pretty wobbly.  I wasn’t thrilled with my first attempt and I’m not sure if I will try it again.  I much prefer using my walking foot, even if it does seem to take forever.

IMG_2249-2

I was much happier with the quilting on this pillow.  I used my walking foot on this one.  I quilted a giant X on the pillow top and then filled in the 4 areas with decreasing V’s.

IMG_2251-2

For the back of the pillows I used some cat print that I had in my stash.  I have no clue where I purchased this print from, but I know it was a long time ago.  I was saving it for the perfect project and this was it!  The pillow fronts were made with Essex yard dyed black linen blend and scraps from my scrap bins.  I used an envelope closure on the back, but I think I’m going to try a zipper closure on my next pillow.  It will be a good opportunity to learn a new skill.

IMG_2259-2

And of course where there are cat pillows there must also be cats.

In addition to the pillows I also finished the quilting on 3 quilts.  I’ll be posting about those just as soon as I finish the binding.   I also plan to do a little giveaway later in the week, stay tuned for details.

Thanks for reading,

Mara

Longest Day Ever

I love to quilt.  I really do enjoy every aspect of quilting.  Well, almost every aspect.  Everything except that basting part.  I know I am far from being the only basting hater.  It doesn’t help that I put off basting until I have 10 quilts ready to baste.  I have so much fun piecing and getting my quilt tops finished I don’t notice how quickly they accumulate.  Before I know it there’s a big stack ready for backings and batting.

Yesterday I decided it was time to catch up and get every quilt top (and a couple pillows) that I had basted.  It took the whole day, and a long boring day it was.  But man did it feel good to finally get it done.  In case anyone is curious, I spray and pin baste all of my quilts.  Quilters seem to either love or hate spray basting.  There doesn’t seem to be a lot of “in between” opinions.  I’m a lover.  I use 505 Spray and Fix and  the only complaint that I have is the cost.  The smell is minimal when used in a wide open area.  I work out of my basement and there is plenty of ventilation.  Due to the cost of the 505 (about $13.00 a can) I stretch it as far as I can.  I spray lightly and then pin baste on top of that.  I can baste 5-7 quilts with one can (throw to full size quilts).  This method works great for me.  Since I have started basting this way I haven’t had any problems with my layers shifting.

IMG_2185

 

It doesn’t look like a whole day’s work, but I assure you that it was.  Four quilts and two pillow tops ready for quilting.  I should have some finishes to post about very soon.  I plan to quilt the pillows and 3 of the quilts in the next couple days.  The last quilt, Starfall, will probably sit awhile.  I am still working out how I want to quilt it.

The best part of all that hard work was that now I have this….

IMG_2190

 

Am empty box ready for a new quilt/project.  Hmmmmmm, decisions decisions……

Thanks for reading!

Mara