• Finished Quilts in 2010

    Click pictures for full details! Julia's Field of Blessings See Mom, I *Can* Make Snowmen in Texas! All Shook Up Pansies & Primroses Vintage Spring Vintage Baby A Bad Copy
  • Finished Quilts in 2009

    Click pictures for full details! Sunshine & Swimming Pools Loving Hands Boy Woogies Carina's Quilt Front Charity Quilt 1 Charity Quilt 2
  • Finished Quilts: Previous Years

    My sister's quilt Elena's Signature Quilt Cosmic Spiral Simona's Flower Garden ...And Everything Nice The Wool Quilt The Original Woogie
  • Finished Craft Projects

    Traveling Car Playmat Brown Bear Matching Cards
  • Finished Girls’ Dresses & Costumes

  • Quilt To Do List

    *Julia's "Baby" Quilt
    *Bethlehem Quilt
    *Kaffe Fassett String Quilt
    *Star Happy Batik Quilt
    *Red & Tan Single Wedding Ring Quilt (blocks made)
    *Batik Charm Square Quilt
    *Lingerie Quilt
    *Purple & Gold Mystery Quilt (just needs quilting!)
    *Eagle paper-pieced Quilt (@ half pieced)
  • Other Craft Project To Do List

    *Alphabet Matching Card Game
    *Apple/Pear Dress for Elena
    *Pillow Case Dress for Julia
    *Knit Dress for Elena (need to do post!)
    *Knit Shorts for Me

The Start of Something New

And by start, I definitely mean the *very* beginning stages!

I have a couple quilts for little ones I need to make, and I decided to do a bit of a space theme.  I had drawn some outlines on paper of what I wanted to do, but really wanted to see what it would look like to scale.  Enter blue tape, center stage.

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The Earth needs to be a bit bigger…

The quilt is set up to measure a wee 36″ x 42″, but I think that should be plenty.  Borders might be added, but that will be decided at the end.  I am really liking the starts of this, and am itching to get started.  But I’m stuck!

I can’t figure out how to piece it.  I don’t know whether to:

a)  Piece a scrappy dark blue background and applique the moon, the rocket, the stars & the earth on top of the background?  I definitely think this is the easiest way to do it, but it doesn’t really excite me.

or

b)  Piece a scrappy dark blue background and piece in some wonky stars ala Gwen Marston and piece in everything else as well, also drawing from Ruth McDowell’s piecing techniques?  Anyone who has followed me for any amount of time knows I *LOVE* that sort of piecing, but also have yet to attempt it myself.  I think this could be wonderful, but I haven’t been able to sketch up how to do it exactly, and it could make this little quilt difficult to make.

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On the left, I have sketched out a background of alternating dark blue nine-patches & liberated stars with plain squares.  This is the background I’m leaning toward.  Piecing in everything will be difficult though — especially the land masses on Earth.  The radiating background on the right – with *everything* just appliqued on – would definitely be easier!

or

c)  Some combo of the 2 above.  Maybe piece the scrappy blue background and the wonky stars and maybe the moon, but feel free to applique on the earth and rocket?  I worry about the mix of techniques and that it will seem disjointed, but perhaps I’m overthinking it.  Lots of quilts combine piecing and applique!

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You can see here some more of my beginning sketches — I considered doing a sun & planet quilt too, but decided against that.  You can see I’d also like to put a little guy in the rocket.

In the meantime, while I stew over this on my design wall, I’ve been busy cutting up some scrappy sashing and cornerstones to make 2 quilts for Quilts of Valor from some blocks my Mom and I made years ago.  They will make up some great quilts for some wounded soldiers, so definitely important work, and will show up on this blog eventually.

 

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And even more snowmen!

Not a quilt this time, but snowman pajama pants!

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I had bought 4 yards of this flannel over the Internet to back my Yes Mom, I Can Make Snowmen In Texas quilt.  But the flannel didn’t work.  When I was buying it, I thought the fabric was blue, when in fact it is aqua.  Even as a backing, it just looked really off.

I really thought about buying the companion pieces for this flannel and making another rag quilt, but the fabric is getting hard to find (its a Riley Blake 2009 Christmas fabric), I really didn’t need to be spending the money, and the girls needed some Christmas pajamas.  So pajamas it was.  I used Simplicity 3669 to make these pajama pants because I am a Type A personality and NEED a pattern for sewing clothes.

For whatever reason they don’t seem large enough in the butt for my skinny-minny Julia, but that could be from some fault of mine.  Elena’s fit fine, so don’t really know!

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I had the full intention to make them pajama tops as well, but knew I was running out of time and energy before Christmas, so I bought these great *plain* long-sleeved pink shirts from Walmart and appliqued on some of the snowmen and trees from the fabric.  (Seriously, more stores need to sell cute *plain* shirts for the crafty ones of us out there to decorate as we please — they can be so hard to come by!)

The  pajamas are a favorite of the girls, especially because I let them choose which appliques they wanted on their shirts.  And with all this Brrrr-COLD weather we’re having here in Austin (shut it!  30 degrees Fahr. is cold anywhere!), they’ve had plenty of nights to wear them.  Now to figure out what to do with the remaining 2 yards of the flannel….

All Shook Up

Another snowman quilt!
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This quilt was just finished this December with a lot less fanfare than the other snowman quilt.  In fact, I think I only mentioned in passing that I wanted to finish it in time for Christmas so that both girls could choose a snowman quilt to sleep with.  I didn’t even let the girls know the snowmen quilts were for them until I finished this one too, which wasn’t until mid-December.  (I started this quilt in September or October, so this really was a fast finish for me!)

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When I finished this quilt, I made a big To Do about laying both the snowmen quilts out on the floor and letting the girls choose which one each wanted.  Disaster waiting to happen as they both clamored for the same snowman quilt, right?  WRONG.  Elena immediately made a beeline for the previous snowman quilt, and Julia proceeded to cross her arms, exclaiming “I don’t WANT a noman woogie!  I want to sleep wit my wainbow woogie Grammy made me!”  Harumph.  Julia finally decided she wanted this quilt when she saw how enthusiastic Elena was about hers, but she still refused to sleep with it.  And Julia is indeed still sleeping with the baby quilt Grammy made for her, while this quilt is in a crumpled pile on her floor.  Can’t win them all!

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I have titled this quilt “All Shook Up! A Snowmen in a Snowglobe Quilt.”  The title is inspired by the wonderful flannel backing I found a couple years ago just for this project  ~Yes, I’ve owned this pattern for at least a couple years ~ and simply because the quilt looks like just a bunch of snowman parts floating around!  The final size is @ 59″ x 73″.  The pattern is “Frosty Flakes” #806 by Sew Special Designs.  I’ve changed it around a bit, adding some snowmen, taking away others, but really not changing it much.

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Because the snowmen are appliqued on, I ended up having to double-layer the white fabric.  Without the double-layer, the blue fabric was showing through WAY too much.  OH, and for this quilt, I painted on all the black coal spots with fabric paint.  I was horrified by the thought of doing either embroidery or applique for ALL those pieces of black coal!
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Once again my Mom quilted this for me, this time adding some swirls in with the quilted snowflakes, and thus definitely adding some more movement to the quilt. The snowmen really are all swirled and shook up! This quilting was especially awesome since I gave it to her at Quilt Festival at the beginning of November and she had it back to me by Thanksgiving in midst of her busy season!
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I still somewhat feel like this quilt is missing a bit of something — maybe some extra color? I couldn’t figure out what else it might need.  Because of that lingering feeling, I definitely wouldn’t say this is my favorite quilt, but I’m definitely still happy with it.  And I’m ecstatic that I got it off my To Do list!

Snowmen in Texas!

I’m sure everyone  has heard ALL about the snow that hit large spans of the US — well, at least the East Coast (and apparently that’s the part of the country that matters most when you’re watching national news) — recently.

Well, the snow did not hit Texas.

Nevertheless, we have snowmen here!

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Finally, a proper introduction to my quilt “See Mom, I *Can* Make Snowmen in Texas!”

This quilt is so named because I’ve loved snowmen now for several years, and my Mom has always given me grief for loving them when I had never seen one, let alone make one, in real life since I was born and raised here in Texas.  (I have since lived in Indiana for 3 years, so I can now truthfully claim that I have made an actual real snowman!)  I fell in love with the quilt pattern Snowmen In The Woods and decided to make myself some snowmen, even if I do live in Texas!

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One of the few completely naked snowmen…

It seems the making of this quilt has been mentioned SEVERAL times on my blog in 2010 and earlier, as can be seen, at least in part, here, here, here, herehere and here .

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The paper-pieced trees took me forever, and I agonized over every scarf and mitten choice.  I was determined though!  My goal was to finish this quilt in time for my guild’s quilt show, and I did just that!

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OH NO!  He dropped a mitten!

It did not receive any awards at the quilt show, but I didn’t expect one for this quilt.  It was in the biggest category.  It did receive good marks and some great comments though, so I was definitely happy.
One of the things that makes me happiest with this quilt are the scarves.  I thought I’d add just one scarf to one snowman.  I kept auditioning  “just one scarf” with several different fabrics, and was continuously unsatisfied.  It finally dawned on me that I needed *more* than just one scarf.  Duh.  So now I have several scarves!


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I am also completely happy with my Mom’s quilting.  LOVE the snowflakes!  The thread is a shiny silvery-white thread, but not metallic.  It has great shine for this quilt.

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The snowmens’ eyes are machine-embroidered on, and the buttons are fabric.  The back of the quilt is a super-cozy green holiday flannel found on a clearance shelf.  The quilt measures 63″ x 78″.

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Elena has claimed this quilt for her bed this Christmas season, and has happily slept under it every night.  And that certainly makes *me* feel warm and cozy.

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and all that good stuff!

For those not on our Christmas card list, here’s the picture that I sent with our Christmas cards this year:

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Not bad for 10 minutes in the backyard with the girls!  Funny thing, I told Elena to put that red crushed velvet fabric in my sewing room after this picture.  I have yet to see that fabric again!  She really really liked it so I think she might have hidden it from me.

Unfortunately the written greeting didn’t show up at all on the pictures I sent in the cards, but I didn’t do a test print at all and didn’t have time to redo them considering it was December 23rd already when I did them!

OH, and here’s some fun — Julia shaking her booty as I tried to get a good picture:

make a gif
Make a gif

As for my goals for the new year?  I’d like to finish 12 quilts this year (average 1 per month), and I’d like to blog more about the crafty things I do.  I am *so* behind in my blogging — it doesn’t look like I’ve been up to anything and I swear I’ve done a fair amount!