QuiltCon recap

This past weekend in Austin was quite amazing. It was a visual feast. A buffet for the senses. A collection of quilting genius. The inaugural QuiltCon. Paul asked me what I learned, it’s hard to say. I mean, I learned a lot and I absorbed a lot. I heard some awesome speakers, people I admire – Amy Butler, David Butler, Anna Maria Horner, Heather Ross, and Denyse Schmidt. I took a class with Angela Walters, and that was amazing. I took a class with someone else that was less amazing. There were tangible takeaways and physical takeaways and lots and lots of fabric. LOTS. And there were quilts. Beautiful quilts. Amazing quilts. There was even some arts and crafts. And, of course, there were cocktails and chips and margaritas and crepes.

I feel like my creativity and my imagination were set free. I feel like in seeing quilts made by the Modern Quilt guild that in some ways I was set free, given permission to bend the rules. They may not seem like much but sometimes not everything should be done by the book. By a pattern. Angela Walters showed us a quilt, something she’d made as a sampler, that was a bit of an awakening for me. It wasn’t even about the quilting but about the quilt design. It was beautiful. It was eye-opening.

Sorry about the images, there are a ton. But it was all so beautiful and overwhelming and fabulous.

How cute is this quilt?

Me with Lizzy House

Me with Lizzy House

This quilt is tiny. It’s AMAZING. AMAZING!

I love this. LOVE it.

This painting is by Anna Maria, I love it. I mean, LOVE. I want. The interaction between a mother and daughter. A moment in time. A touch. The love.

Look at that adorable quilting detail!

Angela Walters and I from my Quilting Negative Space class. This “amazing” quilting is what I did with a long arm. Don’t you think I need one?

Sometimes the things we learn that help us grow and advance, the things that ignite and fuel ones creativity, aren’t tangible. But I really feel like I’m ready to get busy and create. If only my machine weren’t in the shop!

Quilts, Quilting and QuiltCon

I’ve been a sewing fool of late. The white thread spools are flying into the trash left and right. I feel like I’ve gone a bit over the deep end. And I LOVE it!!

I’m loving the QAL with Alyssa and the blocks I’ve made for that. I love the contrast with the red, grey and blue. I still haven’t quilted my blocks for the quilt-as-you-go because I’m just not so sure I’m going to love them as much when I’m done. You know, these are such HARD decisions. I may feel differently after my QuiltCon class this weekend so we shall see what comes of it.

The Mood Block

Em Dash Block

This week is also the much anticipated (by me) QuiltCon in Austin, Texas and I head out Thursday morning for 4ish days in sunny Austin. I am SO excited and am really hoping to learn a LOT. I’m taking a quilting negative space class with Angela Walters, the wiz of quilting, as well as a binding class. I have really high hopes for the binding class as my binding skills are crap. Actually, my quilting skills are crap so I’m really hoping to get a lot shoved into my little brain. The binding class required us to make a block to bring with us so I put this together for that class:

QuiltCon block

I’d received all this fabric for free and loved the block so decided to give it a whirl. I’m not hugely crazy about the pinks/maroons but I didn’t have enough of either color to make that my ONLY color for those spots. But isn’t this a fabulous block.

In other news, I finished quilting my star quilt and have “squared” it up. My hope is that after I take this binding class, I’ll be a binding phenom and can knock out the binding on my quilt beautifully. Although, I have a ZILLION threads to bury so that’ll take some time as well. But I do love the quilt and can’t wait to show you when I’m done!

Will I see you at QuiltCon? I hope so!!

Bees and Quilt-a-longs

I’m super excited to be participating in a Quilting Bee at Whipstich this year as well as having decided to participate in Alyssa’s Skill Builder quilt-a-long (QAL). I’m really hoping to enhance my quilting skills, learn some new things and actually complete a few kick-ass quilts.

I’ve completed the first 2 quilt blocks for the QAL. I am LOVING these blocks and my color choices. Now that I’ve laid out all the fabric, I’ve decided this is a pretty “bubbly” quilt with lots of circles. I may try a lot of stippling when I do my quilting. This quilt is also a quilt-as-you go which means that instead of completing the top, sandwiching it with the batting and the back and then quilting it, you quilt it as you go. I haven’t ever done this before and I’m a little nervous as to how this is going to look but I’m going to give it a go.

I’m going to use the same blue for the back, I’ve just decided, and keep it simple.

The only thing I don’t love about this QAL is that Alyssa doesn’t post the new blocks until the 17th of the month. I’m already itching to make the next 2 blocks but good things come to those that wait, or some such.

I’m also trying to decide what quilt I want to make for the bee and March is my month. I think I’m going to go with this quilt in yellows and greys. One of my dearest friends in the world is moving to Dallas and I want to make something for her to remember me by. I’m not sure she needs a quilt in Dallas but that’s neither here no there. I just need to pick my fabrics and go from there.

I also have 2 quilts that are in the quilting stage now and I’d love to see those completed within the next month. Wish me luck!

February goals

I was out running this morning and I was thinking about my goals for February. I don’t normally have monthly goals, or daily goals for that matter. But when checking my running mileage for January, I came in just shy of 90 miles. Not too shabby but just a few more miles and I could have hit a huge number for me. Anyway, I was thinking and planning about what I want to get done this month and the list is long but maybe doable:

  • Run 90 miles. It will be a challenge, especially my going to QuiltCon for a long weekend but it can be done if I stick with it.
  • QUILTCON!!  Woohoo, I can’t want to go to QuiltCon. 4 days in Austin with my tribe and their fabric! Or something like that.
  • Finish my star quilt as well as Courtney’s Richard Scary quilt. I’m quilting the star quilt now and the other quilt is small, they shouldn’t take long.
  • Finish Courtney’s new twin size quilt for her big girl bed.
  • Get some items up on Etsy, as well as SewHub, for sale.
  • Remember to buy a toothbrush to clean my serger.

OK, that last one wasn’t a goal as much as something I need to remember to do. I went to 2 Modern Quilt Guild meetings last week and I’m feeling all motivated to get some quilting done. And again, I need those extra 4 hours in a day.

It’s been a while

It seems of late that I haven’t had a lot of time where I sit on the couch and twiddle my thumbs. Between the kids and the running and the sewing and all that’s involved with feeding people, keeping them clean, trying to teach them right from wrong, more running and a TON more sewing, my poor little blog has been quite neglected.

I’m trying to figure out how to balance quilting and sewing for the kids and others. I’ve finally gotten this quilt basted and I’ve begun the quilting but it’s taking longer than I’d hoped:

I’ve also put this together for the Modern Quilt Guild Madrona Road challenge. I do love this quilt and even love the quilting as it appears on the back. The binding isn’t my favorite and I’d almost like to redo it but won’t. Now I need to decide what to do with it (other than take a new picture, this picture is terrible)…

And then there’s getting ready for Valentine’s:

And spring:

And so much more. But I’m excited to have launched my Facebook page! Things are moving along, I just need 3 or 4 more hours in the day. At least.

Finding peace in the storm

Things in our house have been a little hectic of late. And by a little I mean there are Cheerios dripping from the ceiling, legos coming out of the couch cushions, children running and screaming from the rafters, and dishes falling out of the sink. There’s fabric oozing off my sewing (read: dining room) table, thread hanging off my shirt and an elf hanging from a mirror. Almost all of those things are true….

I’ve been working endlessly putting together zippered pouces as gifts. I’ve also been working on capes and a few other items that I can’t mention until next week. But I’m going through white thread like it was crack for a junkie. Or coffee for the rest of us. It’s been difficult this past weekend to dedicate the time I needed to in light of what happened in Newtown last week. When the kids are up, I want to hold them tight and not let them go. When I’m sitting at the sewing table, my mind calms and I find myself finding comfort in the way my hands manipulate the fabric in the sewing machine. It’s comforting to cut fabric and sew things together to create something beautiful. There have been several times I’ve found myself sewing with tears on my cheeks as my mind wanders to those in Connecticut who would do anything to find a moment of comfort in this time of terror.

I sent an email today to someone who lost a family member in Newtown last week. There are no words that are adequate enough. No words that can tell someone how sorry you are. That life will get a wee bit better. That you hope that their loss isn’t in total vain, that some change for the good will come so that someone else won’t have to go through this. There’s no way to write that email. No way to bring peace to a tragically broken heart.

Whatever your peaceful and mending methods are, I hope we can all find some comfort and peace and even joy during these sad days. For those of us who didn’t have to share the news with our children, let’s enjoy their innocence and their joy while we still can.

Peace to us all.

Put it in its place

A couple of weeks ago (a week ago? goodness…) I had dinner with my lovely lady friends. These are the ladies that I spend the most time with, no the most about me and see me 1-2 times a week, if we’re planning well. And I’m super lucky. I sometimes think of them as my “mom friends” but that’s not really an accurate description. They all have kids who are the same age as Courtney and Patrick and I’ve known them since Courtney was a little bitty baby. But over the years they’ve become some of my closest friends.

For the past 3(?) years we’ve planned one of our mom nights out for the holidays and sometimes we exchange gifts and sometimes we don’t. There’s no pressure to but if the mood strikes, go for it. This year I made everyone little pouches to keep their things in. They aren’t really that little, maybe 10″ wide by 7″ tall. But they have a wide open mouth and you can keep all your little things in there. There’s a zipper to keep everything inside and one of them even had a pocket.

As a result of making all these cute pouches, a friend of mine asked me to make her 6 to give as gifts. So for the past couple of days I’ve felt like a pouch-making assembly line. I’ve made 4 for her so far but I was also planning on making some as gifts so I need to get on that and quickly. Especially as I need to mail some of mine. What’s the rush?

But aren’t they cute???

Happy Wrapping

I’ve been intrigued by Melody Miller’s new book, Ruby Star Wrapping but confess to not having purchased the book. A few weeks ago the Atlanta Modern Quilt Guild had their annual (I don’t honestly know if it’s annual, have they done this before? See, I’m new there…) year end party and we did a pin cushion exchange. We were to wrap our cushions and then have some kind of game to exchange gifts.

I confess to not loving my pin cushions. I did make 2 little owls but since I didn’t think they were awesome, I wanted to awesome up my wrapping and find a cute way to present my gift. I looked at some of the posts about Melody’s book and found this adorable gift bag on I Heart Linen and it was SO easy and quick. I just loved it and it would definitely help out my sad owls.

Happy little bag

Doesn’t this little bag just beg to be given. Or kept. Really, I’d almost be tempted to keep it… But you know, there were the sad owls to help out.

  Bye bye sad owls. I hope you enjoy your new home.

Carseat tent – GIVEAWAY!!!

Thanks for visiting my new little sewing blog today. I also write over at Karen Chatters, which has more info all about my life but maybe isn’t all that exciting. This blog here is still a work in progress, or at least the store part of it is. But please, look around and check it out! I also have an Etsy store, which is also a work in progress. Perhaps my entire life is just a work in progress…

In a nutshell I’m an unorganized woman, mother of 2 (a 4 year old girl and a 2 year old boy), a wife, a dog owner, a lover of sewing, a HUGE lover of fabric, a runner, a shopper, a cook and a non-cleaner. As a result my house is a mess, there are toys everywhere, my Christmas decorations are in boxes all over the house, the sink is full of dishes and I’m busy sewing and pretending none of that is happening. I love my life, my family, my friends and am a pretty happy lady.

But you’re here for a giveaway, soooo….  Here we have a car seat tent for an adorable little baby! Hate when people touch your baby? Do those cold winter winds keep your baby cold? Is your baby happy sleeping in his car seat but that baby blanket keeps falling in her face? Well, with this little car seat tent, you will find 2 straps that attach to the infant carrier handles to keep the blanket from resting ON your baby. The blanket is curved and should remain off the ground while you put the carrier down next to you. And, when you want to take your little one out of the carseat, the cover serves as a blanket.



This is NOT the carseat tent I’m giving away, just what it will look like on your carseat.

So, please leave me a comment. Tell me something interesting – your favorite book of all time, your favorite food, your earliest memory – anything. The drawing will remain open until the 7th at 8pm and I’ll notify the winner by the 9th. I will ship to Canada and the US. GOOD LUCK!!



The lucky winner is…. #10 – Katie!!  Katie said… “Your carseat tent is so cute! I have a new little one scheduled to arrive in April and haven’t found out if it’s a boy or girl…. would love to win! Thanks.”

Thanks everyone for participating.

FiF – Finish it Friday

Friday mornings I find myself home alone. Or alone, running around like crazy trying to see this doctor or that, stuff I’d rather not drag the kids to. But this past Friday, after a couple of errands and a blood draw at the doctors office, I found myself with a couple of hours before I had to pick the kids up from school so I vowed to knock some things out.

The first was a simple car seat tent but one I’d cut out weeks ago and then put aside for other projects. I went ahead and sewed it together, added the straps and voila, done! It didn’t take tons of time and I can’t believe it had been sitting there for weeks.

Next I tackled the tote bag. I’d also cut the entire thing out, put together the bag part but hadn’t done straps yet. I went ahead threw some straps together, top stitched it voila, done!

At this point I was feeling like some phenom and vowed to complete one more project before the days end. I’d started making these overmost/overalls for Patrick in MARCH. He was going to wear them for Easter but decided that they were going to be too big and too hot and I’d revisit in the fall. Where here it is fall and I’d better hurry up and make them or they’d be too small…  The problem with not visiting a project in SIX months is that you forget what you were doing. I probably needed to do some leg alterations before I hemmed but I didn’t and my lining and pant legs weren’t lining up well. Oh well, VOILA, DONE!!

Overmost, tote bag and car seat tent