January Finish!

So, at the beginning of the month, I talked about a Lovely Year of Finishes... and I'm so excited to report that I met my goal for January.  I came in nearly right to the wire finished two nights ago, but I'm so happy to see this one to the finish line.

I started January with this design up on the wall. 

Each piece was lop-sided and needed to be trimmed to 4 inches square to tidy things up.  What a lot of trimming... but it seriously made all the difference in the world when I pieced everything together!

And.... Ta Da!  It's pieced.   Setting this goal helped me realize that if I trimmed and pieced just a few rows a week I would be done in no time.  And to my delight, that approach worked very nicely!

Here's the top folded after ironing.  It's so nice to see it all come together.  

A closer look at it sewn up on the design wall again.

And an up close of the razzle dazzle center.  

My plans for this top are to turn it into a hawk quilt.  I know, you're looking at this thinking what does this have to do with a hawk.  But stick along, and you'll see!


Puppy Dose

The pups bring joy and make us laugh everyday. Sharing a few of those moments here.


Pink Nosed Reindeer

Pups in the snow.  Seeing them so happy warms my heart and gives me inspiration to make it through the week.  And look how pink Sammy's nose is looking!  Like a little pink nosed reindeer!

Happy mid-week and may your journey to the weekend be easy and quick!


Quilt #1 for Hurricane Sandy Peeps

It's finished!!  Quilt #1 for a family affected by Hurricane Sandy.  I also talked about this quilt here and here.  I merely pieced the blocks and finished off the quilting/binding.  And then gave it it's first fluff up wash and send it off to be distributed.  Delightful isn't it?

The wonky log cabin blocks were made by Max in Kansas, Susan in New Jersey, and Marry Kay in Arizona.  Thank you ladies for showing your quilty-spirit and demonstrating how even a small effort can go a long way in comforting someone!!

I volunteered to assemble one more quilt and have received the last blocks I was waiting for.  Looking forward to the meditative process of piecing the blocks into rows and creating another giant hug to share!

Hope your week is off to a great start!


Times Square {Project Quilting Challenge}

I've joined the fun over at Persimon Dreams and entered in the first Project Quilting challenge of season four.  It's a bit intimidated as the rules state you must create a quilt and finish it within the week and have the design based on the challenges inspiration.  This week we were asked to interpret "Square within a square within a square."  Simple enough, right?

{Project quilting challenge for Season 4: challenge 1, Square within a square within a square}

This piece is about 20 by 12 inches.  I started with the colorful squares in the background.

Then you will see several raw edge squares secured with embroidery stitches. I was inspired by Sashiko stitching for these.  And then I've been interested in trying "quilting on air" a process where you cut whole in your layered quilt.  Gulp!

Pillowcased and ready for quilting.  And here you can see the three holes I cut.  See the green from the cutting mat coming through?

After I quilted a bit, I zig-zagged the edges of the holes and then sewed over the opening with a walking foot to create a spider web look.  So scary and so fun!!  I could see using that technique again!!

A closer look at some of the detail.  By doing the three holes, I got better at maintaining the shape as I went on.  And I sure learned a lot.

Phew, what a challenge!  I'm happy to have stretched my creative muscles and tried new things!  Is it perfect?  Nah, but chalk it all up to practice and muscle memory and experience!  And now we rest for a week.  The next Project Quilting challenge will be announced next Sunday the 20th.

I will also be linking up with Quilt Story for Fabric Tuesday.
Happy Weekend!!


Get it Finished {January}

I ran across a goal setting idea that I really liked.  It's called A Lovely Year of Finishes.  This will be a year long activity and is hosted by Shanna of Fiber of All Sorts and Melissa of Sew BitterSweet Designs

Participating in A Lovely Year of Finishes means that each month I will pick one project (can be new or something already started) and vow to finish the task within that month.  So, for the year you will see me declare what I will be trying to accomplish each month.  I'm looking forward using this as a motivator to better plan out what I want to work on.  I find myself sometimes sitting in my craft/sewing room and willy nilly picking up pieces and making progress, but not finishing things.  I will still allow myself to flit between projects, but this also gives me a sense of focus and urgency for at least one piece a month. 

To kick things off, I would like finish trimming and piecing these half square triangles.  They are units that came from making this quilt.  I've had them sitting around my space for nearly a year now and am ready to turn these it to something awesome.  The good news is that I have arranged them several times and finally settled on this design.  The bad news?  They are all a bit mis-shaped and wonky.  Not sure why.  But, in order for them to be assembled with some precision I have decided to trim them down to 4 inches square.  With a total of 140 squares... that's a lot of trimming! 

I admit I have already managed to trim and piece the first two rows --- whohohooo!  I'd like to see this become the hawk quilt that's been floating around in my head and sketch pads for months.  Don't see a hawk in there?  Don't worry... we'll take it one step at a time and see it through.  My hope is that I will be able to submit this to both my art show at work as well as my quilt guilds annual quilt show.  Time to roll up my sleeves and get 'er done!

What are you focusing on this month?
A Lovely Year of Finishes


Favorites of 2012

Creating with Mixed Media

Yes, I'm one of those people that was so quick to try and say the 2012 stunk and I was over it and I wanted it gone.  And it's true, there are somethings that happened that I would rather not dwell on.  Some things that I wish could have been different.  Somethings that are clawing to follow us into 2013 even though we are trying to beat them off with a stick.  

That said, I am also so grateful I was able to put my happy hat back on and realize that 2012 was also so filled with joy, creativity, and goodness!

:::  We made maple syrup from our own Maple trees
:::  We took the dogs swimming all summer long
:::  We enjoyed our neighborhood, friends, and the woods near the house
:::  We named the deer that frequently walked through the yard and ate my garden.  Long live Calamity, Cherry, and Marmalade.
:::  We celebrated birthdays, holidays, and pretty much everyday in a big way -- like the scavenger hunt for the Mister's birthday
:::  We saw Sublime with Rome and got to meet and greet and get autographs
:::  We went to a playoff game, the Giants won the Superbowl and we even went to the Parade of Heros in NYC to see our beloved Giants!
:::  I entered quilts into my first juried quilt show
:::  Sammy turned the big 0-1 and Katie turned 5
:::  We expanded the veggie garden with our very own rock wall
:::  We grew potatoes for the first time and then ate them!
:::  I'm sure there's more... but you get the point.

It's so easy to get sucked into focusing on the bad, especially when it's right in front of you.  But, I'm glad to be reminded that finding the good stuff is pretty easy too and much nicer to hold on to!

Wishing you and your family a gorgeous and creative 2013!! xoxo


Small Works

I'm excited to finally be showing you the two small works I created recently.  I created them for a call for entry from my quilt guild and the Katonah Museum of Art.  Yes, after being juried, these have the chance to not only be displayed in a museum of art, but to also be sold.  I'm pinching myself!!  And I admit they were really fun to create. 

Both quilts were mounted on 6x6 canvases.  I also finished the edges of the canvas with fabric and ribbon.

And, yes, those are small pieced crosses.  The pieces finished to 1/2 inch -- wow!  And then it's hand quilted.  I seriously must be nuts.  And it's possible that I'm getting the make small quilts bug.

I'll keep you posted on whether or not they are accepted.  My fingers are crossed. 
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