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Monday, February 27, 2012

Quilting mojo thoughts

I'm starting to feel my quilt-y mojo return. It seems to have disappeared for a few months.  Sometimes it doesn't show up even when I make myself go into my craft room and sit down at the sewing machine.  But it finally did this weekend (and last).  Starting a new project had nothing whatsoever to do with it.  Ha.  Seriously though, sometimes it takes having a big block of time to devote to the process, whether that is piecing, quilting, binding, or ripping out and fixing mistakes, and most of the time I just don't have that, I have little scraps of time here and there.  So I tend to get more done on things I can do while DH and I watch television and movies together.  But watch out when I retire... I'm planning to have many more big blocks of time to devote to my passion!

I'm looking forward to my guild's Sit n Sew this month. They are going to be showing how to make string quilts. I'm not sure I'm actually going to make one, but want to be there for the technique.

I finished cutting out all my twister blocks yesterday. Will probably get them all sewn together this weekend. Tonight while we watched the Daytona 500, I finally picked apart the border from one of my MCQG mystery quilts from last year. I was really not happy with the color I'd originally chosen and found a different color that I think will be better, but I really couldn't do anything until I removed the old border.

And I need to begin thinking about what I want to work on during Retreat in less than a month...

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Even though I haven't finished the first set...

I decided to drag out the Christmas fabrics yesterday to see if I had enough of what I wanted to use to get started on a set of Christmas placemats using that Lil Twister template and the Twist n Spin pattern.

So far, I have completed stitching the squares together and added a border to them, and the first panel is complete. I am going to eventually go fabric shopping for the rest of the placemat panels and the backings, so this is almost as far as I'll be able to get before going back to finish my orange / turquoise ones.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Finally Friday!

And another work week comes to a close, hooray! Here is my progress lately on In the Garden (Kustom Krafts). There isn't a lot of confetti stitching in this (yet anyway, hoping it continues that way), and I've really enjoyed working on it this week. Click the photo for a little larger view.

Not sure what I'm going to work on this weekend. I'm kind of being drawn to the cries of a dragon and his wizard...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Twist n Spin

Here is my first Twist n Spin placemat - 3 more to go in this colorway, then I want to make some Christmas ones like I saw at Nashua Sew and Vac. They use the Lil Twister (5 inch) template, which was recently demonstrated at my quilt guild's monthly meeting.

I decided to try these without binding, instead sewing the back and front right sides together with the batting and with a hole in the end, then turning inside out. I'm not as happy with the end result because the edges are a little wavy, due to quilting after sewing the edges down and closed (not as visible due to being pinned to the wall). I will make the others with binding so I don't get the wavy edges.

Happy Presidents Day!

I spent most of last week working completing Aurora's dress. Filling in the last of the purple was the easy part. Then I spent nearly a day filling in each of the metallic colored stars in her dress. Because this pattern was designed several years ago, and I bought the materials for it before I thought better of working with blending filaments, I used the 4 strands of blending filaments it calls for in those stars. If I were starting it today, I would find an appropriate braid substitution, either Petite Treasure Braid (my preferred brand) or Kreinik #4 Braid (much preferable to using 4 strands of blending filament!!!).

Here is the latest progress, click for larger photo.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Happier with my mermaid now

After taking several suggestions into consideration, I decided to backstitch all of her skin where it met with the background fabric. I consulted my trusty (and very old) DMC floss guide (sorted by color family), and chose one shade darker, so it would not stand out much but give just a teensy bit more definition. I'm pleased with the results.

Oh yes, and I added her eyebrow and lash backstitching - it was charted, I just hadn't stitched it until today.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Chocolate Butter Cream

That's the name of the block for February (The Quilter's Attic's Super Second Saturdays sampler quilt), and here it is!

Sunday, February 05, 2012

It's a quilt, no, it's cross stitch

I've spent most of the weekend working diligently on Mill Hill's Log Cabin Quilt, and I finally finished it tonight! That was a lot of work for such a small design.

That makes my cross stitch WIP list down to 22 projects. I'm hoping to whittle the list down a little more before the year's end, but with so many large projects, I know I'll only be able to reduce my WIPs by a few (assuming I don't start any more new ones... ha!)

Mermaid issues

Here is my latest progress on M is for Mermaid. My problem with it, now that I have her entire upper body and face stitched, is that the color of her skin is really close in value to the background, making it a little indistinct. Any suggestions? These designs have very little backstitching, so I'm afraid that if I were to backstitch her skin, it might look weird. I'd hate to rip out and put in another color, since I would also have to rip out several other areas. Should I try stitching a lighter color over it? Maybe with one strand? I'm just not as happy with her as I would like to be.