Tuesday, October 24, 2017

After the Quilt is Finished

So what do you do after you finally finish a quilt that you have put hundreds of hours into?? I was faced with this?  What do you do?  I definitely  couldn't load up another quilt like that!  Wooooow too much to face right now LOL!

So what did I do?  I loaded a friend's husband's hunting sleeping bag on and did some repair work as a favour - not a fun thing to do as it was really puffy!  Then I quilted three charity lap quilts for Victoria's Quilts.  They just wanted basic quilting and everything was ready to go so that was nice and easy.  All this is finished and out the door!  It felt great to get those done for other people.  But, I also want to get some work done for myself.

So, I decided to go into the Quilt Closet and I pulled out a few tops ready to quilt - I decided on this one and just finished loading it onto the frame.


It is a nice little Halloween wall-hanging that I would love to finish up before Halloween!  I think that I will do some custom quilting in the background and just have fun with it :-)  This is one of the samples I made when I was teaching the Accuquilt Go! Club and we were focusing on some of the Halloween dies.  It needs to get finished this year and now it is loaded on the frame!  

So, tell me, what do you do after you finish a big project?  What do you feel that you can tackle after it? 

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Curve It Up Revealed!

And the big reveal!

I cannot believe that this is finally finished! Here I am - one very happy camper!  This was taken just a couple minutes after I finally finished this!! 

 

 Here is a closer picture for you if you're inclined :-D


The Curve It Up Sampler by Sew Kind of Wonderful is finished!!!  It is bound, hanging sleeve on and now, ready to show!  

I finished it up at the cottage where I could sit and do the hand work and enjoy the process without getting distracted by other things - believe me, I can distract myself from hand turning the binding! ;-)

 

I LOVE the way that the filled cross-hatch looks - even though it was a LOT of work - I think that it was worth it.

 

The cross-hatch makes the blocks pop and gives some interest to all the negative space in between the blocks.  I don't know that I want to do this again anytime soon - but - I certainly love the effect.

 

Even the back looks cool!  I think that it looks like a whole cloth quilt on the back with the white on white.  All the thread gives the blocks distinction on the back as well.

 

I think the dappled light coming through the trees looks really cool on the back of the quilt! 

Now that this quilt is finished - I miss the process a bit.  I never thought that I would say that but I do!  I just finished some easy quilting on 3 charity quilts; and, I have a few easier projects to do for myself but then I think I will consider another intense project like this one.

So - what do you think!!??


Friday, October 06, 2017

A Kickstarter Campaign for a New Die Line!

Hello my die-cutting friends!!  I thought that I would share some exciting news with you all about a Kickstarter campaign that my talented friend Ebony Love of LoveBug Studios is running!!  I remember Ebony's first Kickstarter campaign  to release her book.  It was an exciting process and I really enjoyed being a part of the whole thing.  I encourage you to take a look!

Ebony is probably the most knowledgeable die-cutting expert out there and she is hoping to release her own line of dies!!  Wahoo!  A die-cutting expert releasing dies - it's a match made in heaven!

Here is where we all come in - she needs help with raising funds for the initial launch.  Each level of pledge earns a different level of rewards.  There is no risk here - if the funds are not raised the project doesn't move forward.  I have already backed this project and I am excited to get my awesome rewards once this project comes to fruition.

The three dies she has created really fill a gap in our die-cutting world with the Orange Peel, Key West and Sunburst dies.  By the way - you just know that these shapes are going to be arranged just amazingly on the boards!

 

You might be asking - what can I make with these dies??  I am only going to show you one picture, of Ebony's, because she has many more on her Kickstarter page.

 

Aren't these quilts spectacular!??  I am really excited to have another option for additional dies and I am excited to support my friend, and leading expert, Ebony.

 
 

Just today I got an email with this sweet little treat of a quilt that Ebony came up with for the Sunburst die.  I love out-of-the-box thinking like this!  I am sure that there will be many more cool ideas to come out of these blocks.

Hope on over to the Kickstarter page for lots more information and a FAQs on what cutters these new dies work with and for more project ideas.  Take a look through the pledge / reward levels and see if you can find one that works for you!  I know that I did :-)

Monday, September 25, 2017

A Hot Fall Day!

It's another hot day today!

I rolled my quilt back last night and took a look at the block that I thought that I was going to rip and guess what??  I made it a lot worse in my head and actually liked the quilting I had done - except for a small section that I did rip and fix last night.  So, today I get to continue on and get started on the cross-hatch background fill!  Yey!

 

But first - I wanted to share a couple of projects I finished ;-)

I don't know why but I absolutely fell in love with the idea of Hashtag quilt that Sew She Can posted.  But, I didn't want a whole quilt.  For some reason a pillow kept rolling around in my head.

 

Tada!  I couldn't resist making a Hashtag # pillow cover in these awesome Studio E Modern Mixers!  I love this shade of turquoise :-D 

I quilted the 3 pieces in straight lines using my walking foot and a 50 weight white cotton thread.  Very easy and effective.

I like the look of a binding on a pillow in a contrasting fabric to give it a sharp edge.

 

I used some left-overs for the back and added Kam Snaps to keep the pillowed closed and straight. 

Next up!  I finished the binding on this quick and easy Halloween table-topper.  I used the Accuquilt Go! Signature die (in purple) and the corresponding 3" half square triangle die (in black) to give the illusion of bats flying.  I had the top done forever but finally quilted it!  I had a few smaller Halloween tops set aside and I finally got around to quilting a couple of them.

 

I used 50 weight FilTech Glide thread in black in the top and bobbin in a spider web pattern.


There are lots of spider webs in the black and in the green first border so it seemed like a good idea :-D  I love the look of webs on quilts - I love the texture that they create across the quilt.

I have more quilts to photograph to share with you; but, this is what I have for today!  Now to get on with some background cross-hatching!! 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Under the Quilt Frame

Happy Fall!

It has been unseasonably warm the last couple of weeks and I have to say - I am LOVING it! It's been hotter the last couple of weeks than it was in July here.  I've been counting my blessings that our weather has been enjoyable when so many others are experiencing the opposite.  It's heart-breaking.

Well, with the fall weather comes canning season!  Wahoo!  I love fall food! I love making vats of  tomato sauce for us to use over the winter.  It is hard work; but, so rewarding and so yummy!  So far I have done 2 bushels of tomatoes and I would like to get one more done before tomato season is over for another year.


 During all of this I have been trying to do some machine quilting everyday to keep up the momentum of quilting!  A few minutes here and there is adding up to quite a bit of quilting!  After I finished the bottom border I decided to take a dive under the quilt to see how it's looking.


Look at all that yummy texture!! This is the bottom border.  I am getting excited to see real results!  And, I have to stop myself from going too quickly and rushing the end.  I have a LOT of background fill still to do.

I think I might have to do some ripping as well.  I know that there is a section near the beginning of the quilt that I am going to most likely rip out as I wasn't very happy with it when I quilted it and the more I think about it - the more I want to rip out that section - sigh.  We'll see when I roll the quilt back what I think.

But for now - I am excited to see where I am and enjoy the texture and sense of achievement!

How is your weekend going??

Friday, September 08, 2017

Pondering, Thinking and Wondering

Hi all!

I hope that if you or your loved ones are in an area affected by all of these crazy weather systems that you are safe and okay!  Stay dry and warm.

For me?  I am machine quilting today and pondering taking in some quilts to longarm for other people.  I have been thinking about this for quite some time; but, I haven't come to any real resolution about this, for many reasons.  But, I think that I have made one conclusion - from standing here custom quilting my Curve It Up Sampler.  I don't think that I could possibly make money quilting like this for other people.

 

Let me explain a bit.  I have spent the last couple hours using rulers to fill in the bottom of these blocks (my machine doesn't have a really huge throat like the bigger longarms because, frankly, I don't have the space for one of those!) with custom machine quilting - and - enjoying it I might add!

I took a step back from the machine and thought - how the heck would anyone be willing to pay me enough to do this amount of intensive work on a quilt??!!  To make it worthwhile, a longarmer would have to charge a BIG chunk of money to quilt a quilt as intensely as I am.  However, I am sure that people are much faster at this than I am!  I've watched a lot of longarm videos and I know that people are a LOT faster than I am but it still takes a lot of time.

What if someone came up to me with an identical top and asked me to quilt it exactly the same?  I decided that I would have to charge a lot of money.

 

And I mean a LOT of money LOL! 

I think that this is why a lot of longarmers have gone to doing edge to edge computer driven panto-graphs.  It is a lot faster, consistent and affordable.  I know of several, local, longarmers that do only computer driven edge to edge and they have a steady stream of happy customers - enough to keep them busy.

So, after pondering the cost of custom quilting I started to wonder if there is demand for custom quilting?  And, if there is demand - are people willing to pay for what they want?  Hmm.

In the past I have listened to quilters complain about the cost of custom longarm quilting and how the quilter charged way to mach for her Queen sized quilt (let's say $450.00).  If you break it down and think about how many hours the longarmer ACTUALLY spent quilting that quilt, this is an extremely reasonable amount of money for the hours spent.

I found this wonderful article on just that.

 

"Why Does my Longarmer Charge So Much" is a great article that I recommend you read - either as a longarmer or a customer.   It comes down to value - value for your time, your skill and your artistry - not to mention your base costs like electricity, your machine, your training etc, etc.

So, this has been one very long ramble to say I am STILL wondering if there is demand and, frankly, I am wondering if I want to take in quilts for other people, and, if doing this would take me away from my own quilts and my life!?  

So many questions!!!  

Please let me know your thoughts!  I would absolutely love to hear them.  I would love to hear from longarmers and customers :-D

Friday, September 01, 2017

Metro Rings Top!

Hey all!

Well, I suffered through with my pins and I got the Metro Rings top all sewn together and pressed! 

Since it is a nice sunny day, I ran outside to grab a couple of pictures so I could show the quilt top off!
 

I love seeing the quilt top this way - you can't see all the woopsies!   This top is by no means perfect and I think that this was, for me, the most challenging of the Sew Kind of Wonderful patterns I have done; but, I still love it!  I love most quilts made from 1930's reproduction fabrics :-D  I think they are so cheerful!  I have plans for another Metro Rings quilt and I know the things that I, personally, have to do differently - for one - I have to sew at a true quarter inch seam and not a scant one when sewing the 2.5" strips together.  There are more; but, this is the main one.

I also used Kona white for the background and Kona solids for the corner triangles - what doesn't go with Kona

Taking pictures of this top was pretty amusing since it is a bit windy today.  The quilt was flying in and out of good lighting but it created some neat shots :-)

 
 
 

Gotta love the dappled September lighting ;-)  

Now to fold the quilt onto a hanger to await it's turn to be machine quilted!  I am pretty sure I know how I want to quilt this one; but, if you have any suggestions I would love to hear them!