Friday, September 20, 2013

Open Wide!!

No, no this isn't a post about a trip to the dentist...

More open wide zip pouches!! I can't get enough of these pouches, they are perfect! These two came about when Rachel posted our first precision piecing project for the Penny Sampler class. The idea was to make a very small (read 3 inch finished) churn dash block and use it to make a small open wide pouch.

I thought this would be the perfect chance to make little pouches for the boys to keep some toys in when we go out. I received some cute vehicles fabric from Terry's Fabrics and thought it would be perfect for this project! I mixed in some herringbone denim i had on hand and gave it a go!

Um, not so great. A little FYI here folks, when working to achieve precise pieces, denim isn't going to help! And the vehicles fabric just doesn't work all chopped up like that. Back to the sewing machine! I didn't want to give up this practice work so i moved on to the Out to Sea churn dashes for my practice work. But all the little vehicles were still calling out to be made into pouches for my guys! So with the materials i had on hand i whipped up these two little zips.

I know i've already talked about the open wide zip pouch here, but it's just such a great pouch! I chose to make the smallest size this time around and even cut an inch off the width. (I was working with the zipper size i had on hand.) I like the look of the denim on the bottom and it gives it more structure as well, i didn't use any interfacing at all but the vehicles print is a home decor weight so that helped too with keeping it standing on it's own.

I also love the boxed corners...

Definitely key in getting it to stand up!

And here my friends is why it's called the open wide zip pouch!, 

Nothing would get lost in the depths of this pouch! And for such a little one, it can still hold a great deal of cars!

Because really, that's the deciding factor on if this is a success or not :)

Next up, i'm going to try my hand at Made by Rae's Toddler Backpack!

Has anyone made one? Any tips, tricks or pics to share?!

Well that's it, that's all, off to finish up some Penny Sampler blocks and some churn dashes!

Happy Friday high fives for all!
xo snips

Linking up over at crazy mom quilts as always, 
be sure to pop over and check out all the amazing finishes!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

WIP Wednesday - a churn dash beginning

Not a lot to report today, little bits and pieces of things getting worked on this week, but nothing monumental. I did however get my Tula Pink picnic quilt back under the needle!

sorry for the rubbish IG photo!

The quilting on this one is taking forever, it doesn't help that i only quilt this one at my mom's. And while i do spend a great deal of time there, there is always something else to do. But i do wish i had of spaced the quilting out a bit more! For those that forget what this one looks like (it has been quite a long time) here's a shot of it pre-sandwiched.

So while it's planned use is as a picnic blanket, it's going to have to wait until next year to be enjoyed!

Today's sewing adventures were thwarted by a call from my MIL letting me know that she wouldn't be able to take my little guys today. So while Max went down for his morning nap (begrudgingly i might add) Sam and i played upstairs in the stash room. In between building ramps and jumps for dinky cars and freeing a stuck finger from a wooden block...

i managed to pull this together.

We've moved into the precision piecing portion of the Penny Sampler class and this weeks practice projects have been using churn dash blocks. A churn dash has been on my to make list for a while so when this little project came up i new i wanted to give it a go! And here is my progress for the day...

I have a few centers that will be fussy cut but for the most part i'm trying to keep this one on the simple side. Hoping to get this one taken care of quickly, ha!

Hope everyone has been having a productive week!
High fives for finally finding a project to use my stash of Out to Sea! (well a bit of it anyway!)
xo snips

Getting my WIP on with Lee! Clickety, clickety!
And joining up with the party happening at Kelly's! Clickety, clickety!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Finish it up Friday - the Penny Sampler edition

So our first portion of the Penny Sampler class has finished up and i have to say, my applique skills are so much better now than when i started! And i've been thoroughly enjoying it! I'm going to keep this post light on words tonight, lots of pictures to show (and also because i'm eating nachos and wings and typing with one hand is rather tricky!) So here we go!

My little village, i wish i had of changed the house fabric for the top right house. It seems to just fade into the background. And for some reason or another i used a strip of the crosshatch above the roof line of the bottom right house, it would probably look better if it was the solid grey. Oh well, overall i'm happy enough with it to not want to unpick and fix!

Next up...

 My sunflowers, i love my sunflowers! I tried to intentionally be a little more sketchy with the sketch stitching, in an effort to make it look more like the way i draw. I'm one of those people that draws over top of my original image over and over again. (way back in high school i made the mistake of taking a drafting class alongside one of my art courses, my drafting teacher was continually telling me that i needed a firmer more definite line... one line. Then i would get to my art class and my teacher there would tell me that i needed to loosen up and draw more freely. True story.) Now where was i? Oh yeah, my flowers. I may have gone a touch overboard with the sketchiness, but i like them!

Next we have a block that's not applique but was inserted to give us break... let me introduce Mr. Spruce.

Spruce forest that is! I love this block!! I didn't however love making it! I would have much rather paper pieced it, there were so many fiddly little bits that needed to be such a specific size, but it was worth it in the end!

My birds are next in line,

Dilly bird first with her misplaced legs and too straight tail feathers. I haven't embroidered her eye on yet. The way the fabric is placed it almost looks as if she has her eye closed and has some seriously awesome eyelashes. I might leave her as is!

And my little bird, who also needs an eye but seems to be wearing a lovely hat!

I also have finished up my penny patch blocks, also not applique but more of a segue into our next month, precision piecing. Looking forward to this portion, i can definitely use some help in this area!

I love these little blocks and can definitely see myself making a quilt out of just them in the near future!

I also have my vines block, which is the only one i haven't finished yet.

The block is supposed to be a 6 inch block, but it has another 6 incher above it in the quilt layout and it was a blank block. I had originally planned on using the Madrona Road script print in the blank block spot but also wanted it for my vines. So i made my vines block 6 x 12! I still need to add the smaller leaves on the right vine, i'm just not sure what i want to use yet. Do i keep them solid, or use a print? I'm kind of thinking about the woodgrain that my original single heart was on. What do you think?

So that's it! Except for the bunch of them all together!

And don't worry, the mitten will fit in better once some more of the blocks come together! There is a plan for more yellow. And is it just me, or does anyone else have a hard time mixing white and cream in the same project? I'm hoping this quilt will help me get over that little problem :)

High fives for finishing this round of the Penny Sampler class!
xo snips

Linking up at crazy mom quilts and My Quilt Infatuation! Make sure to pop over to both and check out what everyone else has been up to! Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

My to do list is rapidly becoming the i didn't list...

So last Friday when i posted this finish, i updated my 3rd quarter FAL list, and i have to say, not a lot of progress is being made for this round. I've managed to finish four things on the list so far... my list has 18 projects on it!! Where did i fall off the rails people?!

So i have about three weeks to finish 14 projects, so. not. going. to. happen.

And i have to tell you folks, my fourth finish opened up a can of worms that i'm unable to control!
So this is what started the landslide...

That's right! I finished it! I used some gorgeously soft dark grey wool and i love how all the little bits of AMH Field Study pop off it! I want to thank the amazing Gina again for sending me the AMH charm pack that i used for this, and let her know that it's because of this my bedroom has now been repainted, which led to needing to buy a new bed, and then fabric for new curtains needed to be picked out, as well as fabric to make some new pillowcases and last but certainly not least, now i need to make a quilt for my bed! I'm going all AMH on this room! Seriously, it's going to be ridiculous. I can't wait! Oh and if anyone wants to make one of these fabulous pillows the tutorial for the Star Dresden can be found here, that girl that wrote it... wow, so talented and funny too! Really folks you need to check out her blog ;)

Anyhoo onto the WIP of the day. Due to an unscheduled redecorating marathon in the bedroom, no sewing was done this past weekend. So i've fallen a bit behind in my Penny Sampler progress. The minute the boys were out the door today i busted out the stash and started working!

Little by little i'm getting them done, a few more blocks to go and a bit of embroidery work on these cuties,

and i'll be all caught up! Now if i could just get caught up on my FAL list!

Oh well, there's always next quarter!
High fives for a new bedroom! (i'll post some pics once i finish up some more projects for it!)
xo snips

Linking up over at Freshly Pieced, My Quilt Infatuation and 627handworks and you should too!

Thursday, September 5, 2013


Another finish for my 3rd quarter FAL list!

I spent most of the day Wednesday getting it finished up and was able to snap a few photo's today. And while getting this one ready for it's glamour shots i also realized that i never blogged about Sammy's quilt that i made to match. So here's a shot of it!

I made Sammy's for his second birthday and picked up enough of all the same fabrics to make Max's.
They share a room and while i wanted them to match i didn't want them to be the same quilt.

The quilting on Sammy's is obviously more simple than Max's, though i did think going in that Max's was going to be pretty easy... quilting a quarter inch inside all the pluses, no problem! Well that equal's 468 corners to turn! And my poor little old Ken doesn't have one of those fancy automatic foot lifters, So it was... sew two inches, stop, reach through, lift foot, swivel quilt, drop foot, sew two inches, stop, reach through... you get the idea!

I also changed up my binding size on Max's. Normally i cut 2.5 inch strips for my binding, but lately i've been machine stitching them down and i'm finding they're a little big. So i dropped a quarter inch and gave a 2.25 a try.

I like it! It was a good size to work with and i think it's now going to be my standard size!

You all know i'm a sucker for Sarah Jane's fabrics and this rocket print from her Children at Play line is my all time fave!

I wish i had bought yardage of it, i would love to make sheets for my little guys beds with it!

I have made Sammy a pillow case out of it and i think i'll make Max one out of the paper hats/boats print, easily my second fave!

My only disappointment with Max's quilt would be the back.

I love the way the quilting looks, but i wish i had of not been so impatient with it. Instead of backstitching at the end of each plus i should have pulled the threads through to the back and tied them off. Then stitched them into the quilt. Or used a darker thread in my bobbin. Oh well, i'm sure Max isn't going to care! 

And now that i'm looking at it, the top left corner and bottom right are a bit sparse in the quilting... should i be concerned about that? 

Anyhoo, quilt stats :

Size : 43 x 48
Fabrics : prints - all from Sarah Jane's Children at Play line
          : solids - the light grey is Kona Iron for sure, the other grey on the front is either Kona Steel or Coal.  And the backing is Kona Charcoal. As for the blues, i know that the brighter one is Kona Bahama and i'm about 85% sure that the lighter is Kona Aqua. And we all know what my luck is with white fabrics... your guess is as good as mine! And i also have no idea what the binding is.
Quilted by me on my little old Ken with 50wt grey something, possibly Mettler, though it could be Gutterman.
You're welcome... i'm just a wealth of knowledge here today folks ;)

The stats for Sammy's are the same as Max's except it's bigger... how much bigger, i don't know.
I'd measure it but he's sleeping under it right now and that would involve a flashlight, and tiptoeing  and the potential of him waking up and wanting to move into my bed and all kinds of craziness that i'm just not prepared to deal with at the present moment!

So, what do i have planned next? Well, thanks for asking... now that i'm finished with Max's 1st birthday quilt, i guess i can safely start on his 2nd birthday quilt! It's not until the end of February but we need to take into consideration how long it actually takes me to finish anything. So do you all remember this stack... be used for Sammy's 4th birthday quilt, (also needed by February) well it's grown and is going to be used for both my little guys.

But more on this another day!

High fives for a quilty finish!
xo snips

Getting my link on with Kelly and Amanda Jean as always, and you should too!


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

WIP Wednesday - too many sticks in the fire...

...and not enough marshmallows.

It's official folks, i have too many sticks in the fire and it's burning me out. Lately i just haven't really felt like doing much of anything, i don't know if it's me that's the problem or what, but i don't like it! 
I'm still working away on my Penny Sampler, and it's been nice to have something that is a constant project, no real deadline, no rush, but enough structure that i keep going. As for the rest of my projects... they've all fallen by the wayside. For now anyway. 

So in an effort to ramp up productivity i thought i'd pull out a wip that definitely needs to get finished. The little + quilt for my youngest, Max. This was to be for his first birthday, which was the end of February, so i need to smarten up and get it finished!

I'm keeping things simple and just quilting about a quarter inch inside all the pluses, and by simple i mean that it was silly to think it was going to be simple...

That's 12 corners i need to turn for each plus... doh! Couldn't just do straight lines like i normally do, could i?! I do love the way it looks though, and for Max's first quilt i want to keep it soft and floofy, and all the straight lines would have densed (technical quilty word) it up a bit, you know what i'm sayin'?!

I'm hoping to have a quilt finish for Friday, but hey, this is me we're talking about, i make no promises!

And while we're talking about me (pretty slick the way i did that hey?) 
I"m not sure if you all remember the little Indian Summer quilt i was working on? Oh you do?! 
Well... i don't like it. There, i said it. And man does it feel good! Now don't get me wrong, i like all the bits of it, but i think what i'm not liking is the format in which i'm using them. It turns out that while i love so many of the medallion quilts out there, it's just not for me. I added on the last border a few weeks ago and never posted a pic because i really didn't like where it was going. It just wasn't me.

I thought at first that it was the addition of the dark navy into the mix in such a large portion. So i left it up on my design wall for quite some time trying to determine what it was that i didn't like. I tried to convince myself that once i put on the next border i would come around, but what if i didn't, would i just keep telling myself that when i added on every border? So i've decided to unpick, i'm not sure how far back, maybe just to the geese, we'll see. 

Somewhere along the line i lost the feeling that i was hoping to convey with these fabrics... that quintessential Indian Summer feeling. Which for me has always meant one last hurray before the cold weather, light and airy and fun! So not where this quilt was going. It was starting to feel way to structured...  add this border, then add that border, put the cornerstones in the corners... blah, blah, blah.

I've now decided to change tactics and use all the little bits and pieces i've already made as well as whatever else i feel like trying and mashing them all together as a sort of sampler? I'm just making this up as i go now folks so please bear with me as i figure out what the heck i'm doing. But i'm already feeling better about my decision!

Don't worry, this isn't the layout or anything, i haven't gone that crazy!

Cause really folks, all this is just to good to waste on a quilt that i'm not going to like!

High fives for getting some of my ducks in a row!
xo snips