Saturday, February 28, 2015

1st FPP Pattern, 1st Doll!

I would like you to meet "Frightilda Scareaway" and she is designed to scare away your nightmares and protect you while you sleep! (or so I told my daughter). I have never made a stuffed anything except a pillow, and this happened so much by accident. Let me tell you a little story...



I was in the hospital a few weeks ago and since I couldn't sew, I sketched out ideas for paper piecing. There was one that really stuck with me and I set out to make it work. So weeks later I found my doodle, and here is the pieced design.

Amazing! I thought, Perfect!


...wait, now that I look at it, it looks like one of my kid's creatures that she made in the video game Spore. There is one that has a circular mouth with teeth all around in a circle. It closes its mouth like a sphincter and is pretty freaky. That's what this reminded me of. Well maybe I can add eyes?

HA! Now it looks like some sort of muppet!
I'm not the greatest at applique, and I wanted the eyes to seem kinda "sketchy" so I secured them with black zig-zag, then realized it almost looks like mascara'd eyelashes. So I also did a round with red zig-zag. I also made her eyes 2 different colors, coz that seems sketchy, right? I didn't worry about trying too hard to make it "pretty". The result is a REALLY crappy looking applique, or some freaky eyes :)
Great now what am I going to do with it? I know! Arms and legs!
Turning and stuffing these things was the most difficult thing! I tried to make little fingers too
Now for a front and back




I cut and attached a front and back then made her head a little more round-ish so I can add some horns/ears.


 I sewed the arms, legs and horn-ears to the body. 
Then I sewed the seem all the way around the outside leaving a spot for turning
Then I stuffed her!!! YAY I made a doll!
 Time to have some fun posing and playing with her


But look at the frayed bit on her ear! I know, a bow!

Finished product!

She is a hit! My kid cuddled with her all evening while she was laying on the couch not feeling well. I'm thinking about making more :)
I have never done this before and I'm proud of me! I'm going to link up to:
Creative Goodness Linky Party February 27th

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Syndrome!

I made this guy for the Stretch Your Skills 2015 Tutorial Series!

I think I might have done a better job if I had more of the fleshtone fabric, but meh. Syndrome just looks a little florid, like he had been drinking too much. It's ok guy, I feel that way too sometimes :P
I think that I need to take a break from paper piecing! I need to do some old fashioned log cabin action now! (and shovel snow)
Linking up with
Tweety Loves Quilting
Needle and Thread Thursdays

Waiting for the snow

We are supposed to get some snow tonight, a lot if you believe some reports. Most of the reports are saying 3-6 inches overnight. My husband has to drive in it so I was trying to stay up until he gets home, but i think I am losing the battle to sleep. Posting some quilting will help keep me awake for awhile!
For the past week I have been doing nothing but paper piecing! Even little pieces take a lot of time and concentration so I think I am almost pieced-out! None of these blocks have any purpose yet other than to amuse me and I really do have a good time making them. So I am using this as my 4X7 Challenge post even though I did a little more than 30 mins a day, maybe? :P

The bottom left is a block from the Project of Doom. I am a bit behind, like 3 weeks I think but I made an effort and made that block last night.
The top left 2 are pieces from Quilt Art Design's Mystery Monday. Those were difficult because I didn't have a visual to go off of, just pieces and color codes. I'm not sure what I will do with these. I am temped to make something like small zippy cases out of them, but I also think if I wait there will be more in the series. Then I will have enough for maybe a small quilt?
The right piece is a beautiful pattern I tested, but I will talk more about that one when I finish that project in a few weeks (I guess keep an eye out?)
I PROMISE that I will work some on the labyrinth quilt tomorrow. If my kid is home from school for a snow day I might not be able to get MUCH time though. This is the last project I plan on completing for Q1 of the 2015 Finish-Along. The finished top should be 60"X 60" and this little bit I have is maybe 18" square--I got a lot more to go! I love how scrappy it is. I think that it will really give an extra dimension to the finished product.

Well, still no snow, but I will see if we are in a Winter Wonderland tomorrow morning.
Linking up with:
Berry Barn Designs 4X7 Challenge
Freshly Pieced WIP Wednesdays

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Mystery #2!

This was a really hard pattern for me to figure out!

I worked on this for a bit yesterday, then more tonight. I feel so accomplished!
In case you are wondering, the pattern came from Janeen at Quilt Art Designs. Sorry I ruined the mystery for you if you were working it out :)

Just after I posted this, I realized my mistake! Can you spot it???
Well here is the corrected version

Better!
I'm linking up with
Linky Tuesday
Scraps Monday, Tuesday Edition

Friday, February 20, 2015

My mom, Friday finish, and Feb. Goals

February is my least favorite month, because I have so much trouble spelling it!
Today I finished up the Ugly Quilt! I have been told that it is not ugly, just busy.

 
Quilt in the snow!


Today I finished this quilt and I took it off to the nursing home. This was the same nursing home that my mother lived in for the last 8 months of her life. They took such good care of her and most of the residents are on Welfare and very poor. I visited my mom almost everyday--I knew she was dying, she had a brain tumor, so I knew every moment would be precious. It was incredibly difficult watching her die especially because her memory and grasp on reality got really bad (she always remembered who I was though) but it would have been so much worse if I had to take care of her on my own without the nursing home. She died 4/28/2010 at the age of 60.
While she was there I noticed a lot of the residents never had anyone visit, they might not have had any family or their family just lived too far. The nurses always made such a big deal about how I was there almost everyday because no one else was visited as much.
So when I decided to learn to quilt, I had no idea what I was going to do with the finished products and donating them to the residents of Trinity Mission was the solution. Also my mom loved giving to charity, it made her happy. So I know that my mom would love me doing this.
SO! Enough backstory...today I took the finished Ugly Quilt down there and met with the activities director Pam. She and the lady that works in Administration, Debbie, knew exactly who they wanted to have the quilt. And we went off to the lady's room to give it to her. I was told she was an elderly woman who had had brain surgery and had been in there for a long time. She was mentally disabled and has trouble communicating, but they said that she loves to make her bed and decorate her part of her room.
We walked in and she was laying in bed and was happy to see she had visitors. She sat up and Pam said, "Irene, this is Melissa and she has something for you." I help up the ugly quilt and said, "Hello Irene, I was wondering if you'd like to have this," and she looked at me, then the quilt and shook her head and said, "Noooooooooooo!"
I laughed out loud! Pam asked again if she was sure, and each time she was emphatic, she did NOT want the Ugly Quilt. HA! Pam looked embarrassed but I said maybe there was another resident who would want it? And she said there was one woman named Sherri who is younger than the other residents. She was in a wheelchair (it IS a wheelchair quilt and Irene was ambulatory anyway) and she never has any visitors. She took my name and address, and said she and Sherri would make me a thank you card. I didn't get to meet Sherri though because she was sleeping so I don't know if she also took one look at the Ugly Quilt and said, "Noooooooo!" too :)
As I was leaving, there was a lady who was in a wheelchair and I met her at the entrance. She mentioned that she liked the Ugly Quilt and would love to have it. I asked what was her favorite color and she said red.
Hmmmm
I asked if she likes cows and she said she does. So tomorrow I will be bringing Tanya the Hearts and Holsteins quilt that I made for last weeks Project Quilting. That made her smile and I really didn't have any plans for that quilt anyway. I know I can list them on Etsy or Ebay but I put a lot of work into it so I wouldn't want to sell it for cheap, yet it is far from perfect so I would feel bad selling it for the price I felt went into it. This way the quilt has a home, I did a good deed and if it is bad craftsmanship, the price was right!
I did tell Pam that it was possible that Irene thought we were asking if she wanted to cover up with the quilt right then, because it was really hot in there and she was lying in bed in a sweatsuit and no covers. So maybe that was what happened, but I got a good laugh out of her emphatically turning it down.
So for more info on the quilt and how it got it's name!
The blocks were originally for other projects. I decided I didn't like them so they went into the "Ugly Quilt" because they were too ugly for their originals.
And since I love improv sewing, I made the 3 inch sashing and posts from improvised bits. This quilt was the most fun thing I have made, which proves that aesthetics and happiness don't always mesh. I also put a HST row on top and bottom so it would be more rectangular than square.
Whenever I see a tutorial, or finished quilt post, the quilter has taken amazing pictures that showcase the best features of the quilt. Sometimes the setting is a little odd though (for me) and I always notice backgrounds. So here is my attempt at being artsy and failing.
Ugly Quilt artfully draped across a broken lawnmower covered in dead honeysuckle!

Ugly Quilt artistically draped across my daughter's old plastic slide! (Notice the broken hammock in the background)




Oh well, I will get better at taking pictures with practice.
I did this as a no binding quilt and I LOVED it! I didn't take a picture of the back, because of negligence, but it is solid and the same as the blue flower border. If you are wondering what I mean by no binding, I basted my batting to the quilt top and sewed the back RSF then turned it inside out. I finished with top stitching and just horizontal and vertical straight line quilting--nothing special.
Today I am linking up with--
Confessions of a Fabric Addict
The Carpenters Daughter Who Quilts
Richard and Tanya Quilts
Quilting Readers Garden
Crazy Mom Quilts
Quilt Shop Gal
Pink Doxies
This is also one of my proposed finishes for the 2015 Finish Along!

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side
A lovely year of finishes

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

"Don't translate this or you will be offended" WIP Wednesday

I was able to spend some time with some friends. We were talking and decided to start separate needlework projects. My friend Caitlin, never cross-stitched before, was working on a penguin pattern. I said that I had an idea from this book I am reading about the history of swearing called Holy Sh*t by Melissa Mohr. You can read the Amazon description here.
In the book, which is fascinating BTW, there was a whole section about how the Romans wrote such filthy poems and graffiti. The above phrase was supposed to be the filthiest thing ever written in Latin, so bad that the poem it is from was not translated until the 20th century.
I thought it was be fun to make a small needlework piece with this embroidered on it. I'm sure this is not the first time someone thought of it, but it amused me :D
I like the little blue flowers so far. It makes it look delicate and sweet vs the violent and offensive statement (which I don't even want to translate because it is so bad).
I'm linking up with Lee @ Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Mystery Block!

Janeen from Quilt Art Designs posted a mystery block on Monday! 

I have a link to the post here but SPOILER ALERT, this is what the design is

It is so cute! Lily thinks it's a llama, but I'm pretty sure it is supposed to be a giraffe :)

This was so much fun!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Scrappy Orange Peel

A friend of mine said that she was inspired by the some quilt blocks that were made in a Civil War era bee. She requested that her quilter friends make some random blocks and send them to her to piece into a quilt. She said that she would like them really eclectic and it didn't matter if they were vintage looking or modern, but I took the Civil War idea and ran with it.
I have a book (really old that I found at a thrift store) of quilts from different eras and sample blocks. There was an Orange Peel-type block in it, but I did not like the tutorial.
BUT!
I found a wonderful tutorial here. This is from a classic quilt block tutorial series. I have had the WORST time with applique, but this tutorial really made it easy!
I made it scrappy too, so I will link it to Scraptastic Tuesday Linkup

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Project Quilting challenge 3...Done!


I finally finished this quilt!
Last Sunday, I had a pile of fabric and 2 made blocks. I worked my butt off on this and I doubt I will push myself this hard again!



 My mother-in-law found this fabric at a flea market or yard sale, and look at the copyright date! 22 years of waiting for someone to make a quilt. They all were in a box and all had similar dates on them :)
I just made it and already the quilt is an antique :)
I took some pictures in the light today, it is so pretty out!
My little helper...did not want to help, only swing!

Another (not so helpful) helper


One of the original orphan blocks. This was an orphan block/UFO challenge
The rules said I needed some applique, and this is the applique block!

My own pattern block

Paper pieced from http://www.squaresandtriangles.com/homeward-bound-block-tutorial

Paper pieced from http://www.quilterscache.com/L/LacedStarBlock.html

This is the other orphan block

I didn't do any fancy stitching on this, just stitch in the ditch.
"Hearts and Holsteins"
Melissa Meinhard
Finished at 46" x 64"
fleece battling
Linking up with Project Quilting here! and Creative Goodness here
and Sew Cute Tuesday here

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Works in Progress Wednesday!!!


On Sunday I started the Project Quilting challenge for this week, which is "UFOs and Orphan Blocks" so that is what I have put all my quilting effort into this week. If you remember I already had 2 blocks sewn so I decided to make more to put into a quilt. So far, the only quilts I have finished have been sampler quilts...barring the fish table topper. And this one will be no different.
I already had a flying geese block and a equilateral triangle block so I decided to make 4 more blocks, that should make it about the correct size for a lap blanket.
Oh! abd I have a name for it -- "Hearts and Holsteins"
I made a paper-pieced block from this pattern here It turned out lovely! It reminds me of a Chinese checker board or feng shui symbol.

The pattern on the fabrics are cows and hearts, perfect for Valentines day? So the next block I made was a heart that I pieced together...It didn't turn out as bad as I feared! I have a piecing problem -- things seem better in my head and on paper than they do in fruition. So I was pleased that this block, which I designed myself didn't suck! WOO!

I am trying a new something new, A Stellar Block. I need to tweak the measurements so that it will fit.

Also for this quilt I will need to do some sort of applique, which I am panicking about.
*cue panic attack*
I will have space in the middle of the stellar blocks that will be blank, maybe I can do something there? Also, since applique is not my strong suit, do I really want to try 4 appliques? Another thought I had is that I might be able to cut a heart out of one of the fabrics and applique it to blank 12.5" square? But then I will have more blocks than I need--HA!
I have set the time frame for this quilt as:
  • Needs to be done by Sunday
  • So I wont procrastinate, I want to have it totally finished Saturday when I go to bed. 
  • I want to have it sandwiched on Friday so on Saturday all I will need to do is quilting and binding
  • So, by Friday morning, I will have the final layout in my head
We will see what happens! I will keep you guys posted!

Linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesdays