Flirt Marks the Spot - Finished!

There is nothing that I don't love about this finish.

I love the pattern, from McCall's Quilting Magazine. When I saw it, I immediately envisioned it in Sandy Gervais' Valentine line. Because of course.

I immediately envision most patterns in SG's Valentine lines. Doesn't everyone?

I knew I wanted to quilt it with daisies, but I've not yet tried flowers. So I used a pantograph - Hearts and Daisies. It was easy to follow and I definitely gained a lot of muscle memory for flowers!

I tried to keep it slow and not loop when I changed directions - something I struggle with when I move faster. I love how it came out.

I pulled the three white-on-white strips out of the jelly roll, with the assumption that they wouldn't place nice in the pattern. {Entirely true.} They became binding along with the leftover background Kona {which isn't white...that's about all I remember. It's bone or parchment or snow or sleet or cream or milk or...}

The border fabric isn't SG. I walked into one of my LQSes, spotted this immediately, then wandered around the whole store because, really, the first thing? There has to be something better. There wasn't. It's Amanda Murphy's Bella.

The backing is - don't tell the quilt police - a full size flannel flat sheet from Target. Yes, I prewashed it, and yes, it has a looser weave than pretty much any flannel I've bought from Joann's or a quilt store, so I wasn't worried about it on the machine. 

And it's big enough without piecing and it's adorable little dots and it matches quite well and I still have the pillowcases and fitted sheet that I can hand over to my mother-in-law to make jammie pants with.

Label stitched on, but not yet labeled.

Have I mentioned I love it?

{And so do the cats.}


Weekly Progress - Tops and Stops

Well, I survived my hardest week of training in, um, probably forever. I've never done a running plan with a 12-mile long run. Longest I've ever run pre-race was just shy of 11, and that didn't include a week of heavy duty sprints and tempo runs beforehand. Ow.

But now I am tapering and foam rolling and icing and treating my legs like princesses. Princess who take Epsom salt baths instead of bubble baths, that is.
And sewing! I've done some of that, too!

Stalled out when I realized I didn't calculate my yardage right. And did I mention I bought this fabric last summer in Sun Valley? Oops. I called the store, emailed with the very nice owner and I think the right fabric is on it's way. Otherwise...

But hey - look! I got my design wall off the floor!

...and the countdown to CC pulling it down begins.

This is one of my very first fabric purchases, some eleven years ago. It was supposed to become a pillow, I think. Instead, it became a doll dress last year, and then relegated to the scrap bin.

Ever walk into a quilt store, spot the perfect border print immediately, then wander around for thirty minutes because really, the first one can't possibly be the best one?

Yeah. The first one was the best one.

Another project in the bag for long-arming!

And once Flirt was done and I hit a dead end on Road, I went back to whipping up HSTs for in between my sprints. Because I'm fun like that. Almost all the chevrons are triangled-up now.

Hmmm, I may have more tops done by the end of the month than I have time to quilt them...

And finally, Celtic Solstice has been relegated to leader/ender status. Four 54-40 blocks are done, and there's various pieces of each step scattered about the sewing room.


Goals for 2014

Ahhh. the flurry of posts summarizing the year we're leaving and the year we're starting. I have yet to do the former, so this will also suffice as my January goal post for the various linky parties.

When we moved this summer, there were twenty-mumblety-something boxes of fabric. FIZ includes both in-progress projects and specific project fabric pulls. 

There's a LOT of both. 

My goal is to finish off one UFO-FIZ for every new-FIZ started.

Starting in January, that's Flirt. All the rows are pieced; they just need to go together and be bordered. It would be nice to have the Valentine's quilt done for the holiday!

And then, in no particular order...

This all should be easy, considering the very minor life goals for the year. 

Like, traveling to Korea to pick up our son. And then dealing with a 2.5 year old who doesn't speak English.

Or possibly running four half marathons in 34 days to level up in Half Fanatics. Which would be after I break 2:20 in January.

But, that's it. Nothing else major!

These won't be a finished project this year, but I also want to work on my BOMs - Ripples and Reflections, and Fat Quarter Stars. That's just one star block every month, and whatever R&R has for me. I think I'm going to set aside one day every month just for that.

I also know there's plenty of other projects that will find their way onto the list - for example, eventually I will get back the blocks for my sister's wedding quilt, my mother still has plenty of wall hangings on order, and who can resist those quilt magazine projects?


Weekly Progress - Bits and Pieces

I had a lot of little progress on a variety of projects this week - trying to balance projects that need to get done in the near future. But since I'm crossing things off the list rapidly, I think it's working okay. For now. Until I realize I can't find the top of my cutting table again.


Worked on:
Pieced all the rows. Now to put them together...eventually...when I have time...

Pieced all the blocks for the twin boy versions, started assembling.

The second set of blocks - I used the same charm packs but changed the outside of the on-point blocks. They both have quilting scheduled for Wednesday, so I need to get a move on the assembly!

Creeper Costume - started piecing the strip sets

All the blocks prepped for my sister's wedding quilt! Which she doesn't want called the boring "wedding quilt #1." Any suggestions?

Rainbow Boats - pieced the boats/background. The top will be filled with an applique sun and rainbow, but I needed the bottom done for scale. I've got my fusible web ready for sketching in between piecing the twin quilts.

The girl How Charming quilt is quilted, but not yet bound.

And finally, finished the baby blue scrap blocks, and cut/pieced scraps from Henry's quilt immediately. This month is grey/black, which is my sashing, so I will probably going to ignore the assigned color and catch up on the months I'm behind.

What's not on the list? St. Paul's Cross. Ugh. I know, I already failed at four blocks a week. I'm trying to get a few deadline things done before my sister's wedding, so it got pushed to the back burner. Hopefully I'll get back to it soon and not wait another two years!


Weekly Progress - Selfish Sewing Week

This past week was "Selfish Sewing Week" hosted by Imagine Gnats and Made with Moxie. I didn't really have time for true selfishness, but I used it as an excuse to put aside St. Paul's Cross for a week and just sew on whatever other project I felt like.

And after plodding through eight-blocks-a-week, it feels good to post all this.

Applique finished, borders on, backing purchased, quilting time scheduled.

{How Charming - Quilt in a Day}

More like Quilt in an Hour. Easy peasy pattern. I made it in girl prints first to test my math skills - I have three charm packs and three quilts to make, so I'm not quite following any of the given sizes of the pattern. And a good thing I tested - I miscounted the needed charms, so the twin boy versions will be smaller, but with added borders.

The twin boy versions are an order from my mother-in-law. The girl version will go to Project Linus, squeaking in just under the wire for 100 Quilts for Kids. It'll be first up in the quilting time scheduled for later this week.

Speaking of quilting time - so the Fifteen Minute Challenge this month was learn something new. {I know I've mentioned it once or twice.} Paper piecing and applique weren't quite new, but required a bit of relearning since I don't do them often.

This was my brand new skill for the month. Long arming! There's a place in town that rents time on their machines, and my husband is a big fan of "try before you buy a $10k machine."

{Just kidding. There's no way he's buying me one.}

I loved it. I mean, it's terrifying. Those machines are huge and they can whip across a quilt fast. But as someone who was tried and tried and tried at free-motion on my home machine, it was wonderful. I'm not at all anywhere near perfect, but my first attempts with a panto were huge strides beyond my attempts at home.

{Mine are the middle flowers. The perfect ones on the left and right are my instructor's.}

My freehand is still a little shaky - and I hate chalk; it disappears in seconds with all that vibration. I'll definitely be marking my quilts at home with a marker in advance once I get the confidence to go free hand.

And in unfinished projects, another pile of my sister's wedding quilt blocks, taped to cardstock and ready to go.

Another couple of blocks added to rows.

All that piecing led to lots of leaders/enders becoming blocks.

And in my most selfish sewing, I started piecing the back of Swoon. And it's a top-super-secret until the Blogger's Quilt Festival, so this is all you get.

Whew. Nice week, huh? I decided I'm going to try to piece four St. Paul blocks each week, freeing up time for other things so it doesn't get paper-piecing-tedious as fast. It'll take five weeks to finish, but I'm still on track for a Christmas finish. {Since I've missed her birthday and dissertation submission.}