Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Reason # 90...

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... to organize your stash. 

You turn the world upside down looking for Kona Ash only to find 5 yards of it in one of your cabinets.  I've been meticulous about organizing my yards, fat quarters, etc... but I have yet to tackle my cabinet of yardage. 

Randi was so kind to let me know that she has the ever elusive Kona Ash in her shop and I was just about ready to buy some when I decided to double check the cabinet of shame.  Good thing I did but for all of ya'll who can't find it, Randi has some!

So with all that madness, I laid my star on top of the two shades of grey and decided that I liked the darker grey.  I know.

Just to make sure I called in my creative team.  Well, not really a team... just Steve and the two beagles who followed.  Steve agreed that the darker grey made the star pop more.  And yes, he really said "pop".  He speaks quilt!  Isn't he the best??

Adding the squares and triangles to the star wasn't bad at all.  The Y seams were no big deal.  The worst part was cutting the large pieces of fabric.  So now it's dark and windy so ya'll will have to settle for a sneak peak.

Anyways... someone won the book and ruler and they get to make this quilt too!  I used the highly scientific method of asking Chaney to pick a number from the number of entries. 

Her answer: number 90

NeedledMom!  Congrats to you!  If you will email me your address, I'll pass it along and have your book and ruler on their way.

Thank you to everyone who entered!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Radiant Star {giveaway}

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Well, I didn't finish my quilt top like I wanted to.  I can't convince myself that Kona medium grey is going to work in place of ash.  I'm afraid that the points of my star {since they are darker} would get lost in the darker background.

So even though I'm frustrated, let's have a giveaway!  Free things always make me feel better. :)

Eleanor Burns has generously offered one Radiant Star book with the bias stripper ruler to one of my readers.  Both the book and the ruler are amazing to work with and they are the reason I was able to piece my star so quickly.

How do you win?

Leave 1 comment telling me why you want to make this quilt.  I know it's on some quilting bucket lists while others may want to learn precise piecing and matching points.  Or maybe you have the perfect fabric for a quilt like this!

For a 2nd entry, become a new follower or already be a follower.  Leave a separate comment telling me that you are a follower.

The giveaway will be open until Monday, January 30th at 10:00 am CST.  Shortly after 10am on the 30th I will announce the winner and hopefully show off my finished quilt top!

Have a wonderful weekend and wish me luck in finding some Kona ash!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Aunt {Edna}

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So I went to Joanns over lunch to do some more crack research for my blog.  Right? 

Right. ;)

Actually I was in search of what is apparently gold in the form of Kona Ash.  I have had the hardest time finding it in a store and I wanted to use it for the main background in my radiant star quilt.

I still didn't find it and settled on Kona Medium Grey.  I'm still not sold so to ease my disappointment, I picked up 1/2 a yard of Denyse Schmidt's new line, Aunt Edna.

I love these tiny dots and all the prints are from a really nice color palette. 

The other thing I love... the fabric quality is back!  After being a little disappointed with the quality of some of the fabrics from the last lines compared to her first for Joanns, I feel confident to put this fabric in quilts again and not worry about how it will hold up over time.

Hopefully I'll love the medium gray and I'll get most of the quilt top finished tonight.  If I do, I'll share pictures tomorrow and I will give away a copy of the book and ruler. 

And if I don't... well, I'll just give away the book and the ruler to feel better about not finishing the top!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Not a quilt in a day...

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... because I have a very short attention span.

I suppose that things are just too interesting and exciting around our home.  That and I kept stopping every 15 minutes to show Steve my progress.

Yesterday I focused and had the remaining 7 star points put together in about an hour.  My secret?
photo from elmers.com

Elmer's Clear {Washable} School glue. 

When I decided to do this review, Eleanor's son, Orion {coolest name ever, BTW}, made sure to suggest that I use a glue stick instead of pins.  The only glue stick in our house was one that had purple glue so I asked The Internet and the answer was Elmer's.

excuse the mess!

My first try left me thinking that I could pin faster so I tried that too.  I might have pinned a little faster but once I started doing this assembly line style, I flew.  It was amazing!  Just a tiny dot where each seam matches made things so easy.

It took me another 30 minutes to put the star points together.  All I have left is to swirl the center seam of the star so it will lay perfectly flat.  And BTW, this star is huge!  I can't even hold it point to point or get all of it to fit in my iPhone lens.

Tonight I'm hoping to do the squares and triangles around the star and then tomorrow night I hope to add the borders.  I waited to pick the border fabrics and I'm so glad that I did because I'm really excited about what I came up with while piecing the star.  I think it will fit the overall feel of the quilt well. :)

Now that I'm confident in the process and the steps I know that I could make one of these in a day.  For real.  Eleanor's instructions are that good!

I'll save the rest for my full review.  Oh, and I also get to giveaway a copy of the book and the magical bias stripping ruler so stay tuned for that!

If you want to see the rest of the posts about the process of this quilt:

Linking up for Fabric Tuesday too!

Friday, January 20, 2012


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 Ever want to shout something from the rooftops?  Like an injustice.  Yeah, me too.  But sometimes you can't always do that so when in doubt, make a quilt. :)

Remember this beautiful picture?  I'm turning more and more to inspiration found in scenes from the world around us these days.  For this quilt; it was both the colors and the rooftops set against the blues from the sea and sky.

I have always wanted to make a skinny quilt like the beautiful ones that Marit makes.  This one measures 36" x 50" and it will be hanging on the wall along our stairs.

It's backed with a print from one of Denyse Schmidt's lines for Joanns. 

I quilted it with random straight lines mixed with rising and falling diagonal lines that mimic the outlines of the various rooftops.

Starting the bottom of the quilt with various terracotta triangles and finishing the top of the quilt with blue skies and one single roof top was a last minute design decision and one I'm glad that I made.  I like to think that it gives this simple quilt some added depth and texture.

I bound it with a tangerine and aqua striped fabric that I've had so long that I can't remember the line or the designer.  I used my new Eleanor Burns ruler to make the bias strips and it was super easy.

I don't keep many of my quilts anymore but I'm so glad that this one is mine to keep!

Linking up for Crazy Mom's Finish it Friday.  Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Chartreuse {love}

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Thanks for all your input on my radiant star color choices!  I'm pretty sure the favorite was the Alps color scheme and it's my favorite too.  I picked my fabrics the other night... all from my stash!

Chartreuse has never been a color that I've used or even gravitated towards {it came out a little lighter in the picture}.  Given my disdain of green fabric, lime green in particular, I'm surprised how much I love this color mixed in with the blues and greys. 

Plus, I feel fancy to calling it chartreuse instead of some hue of lime green... ;)

White + beagles = a bad combination

The white in the group is Kona snow and I'm not entirely sure if I won't be swapping it out for a really light grey.  If I use white in the star then the background calls for the same color.  That's a lot of white given that this is what our bed looks like in the morning. 

And I know I've said it before but Design Seeds is my favorite site for color inspiration!  I never would have picked this combination had I not seen it on their site. 

Thanks for all your comments!  I think I'm going to do a timeline of just how long it takes me to make this quilt which should be a lot of fun...  I might even do it in real time on my Facebook page so ya'll can see the good, bad and the ugly of trying to make this quilt in a day!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Totally Wednesday {Words}

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rainbow pillowcase I bought on Etsy.  I'm not calling it vintage because that would mean that I'm old!

I don't know how it started but somehow we were having a conversation at dinner and Chaney, half-way listening, thought that we said something about bringing someone back from the dead.  Like I said, I don't know how or what part of our conversation landed us with the following:

Chaney:  did you say something about bringing her back from the dead?

Me:  ummm... no.  I don't think so.

Steve:  where did you get that from, Chaney?

Chaney:  oh, I don't know.  I guess I was just thinking about how it was totally possible, way back in the '80s, to bring someone back to life.

Steve nearly spews his milk... I'm trying not to laugh too hard...

Me:  oh really?

Chaney:  Yep.  Totally.

Oh, those magical 1980's.  Way back when kids really listened to their parents at the dinner table and people were routinely raised from the dead.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Seeing {stars}

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When I got the opportunity to review one of Eleanor Burns' books... rulers... etc.. I jumped at the chance.  She's pretty much quilting royalty and I learned a ton from her books when I first started quilting.

When I went to her site to look, I kept going back to the Radiant Star book/pattern.  I was more of a traditional quilter before I became a "modern" quilter so I'm still very drawn to traditional patterns... with a modern twist of course. ;)

So I read through the book last night and I'm ready to start planning this quilt.  I often pull fabrics as I go but I'm thinking that this quilt requires a little more planning.  So here's where I need your help!

Colors... {don't forget about the first picture up top!}



A combination of the two?

And BTW, sometimes I feel like I'm bragging when I talk about getting to do a review or receiving fabric to work with.  I don't ever want to be that girl and that blog that people roll their eyes at because it looks like I get tons of free stuff {I don't!}.  It's no fun to write or read about financial issues but let's just say that the things I sometimes receive are tremendous blessings at just the right time that allow me to continue to do what I love which is quilting.  I will always do my best to give back to others too but I never want to come across the wrong way. 

I feel better getting that off my chest.  Thanks for listening!

And now back to the fun stuff!  What do ya'll think??  I'm thinking that I'll use the lightest color of the palette as the background fabric.  I don't want to use white because that's pretty predictable and not very conducive to a lot of use either so keep that in mind...

My hope is to make this queen size for our bed.  I figure that if I'm going to make this quilt then I might as well go big.  Now the question is whether or not I can actually make it in a day!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Fabric {Friday}

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Where the heck did this week go??

It was largely swallowed up by work I suppose.  Oh, and a few fabric scraps too... ;)

Pretty much the only sewing excitement around our house this week was this beautiful fabric that showed up on our doorstep.  And I won't lie; Steve called and asked me where this heavy box came from and I started filing through my mental notes for large fabric purchases.  But then I remembered that this was sent to me to play with. 


Modern Whimsy.  It's designed by fellow Texan, Laurie Wisbrun and it's amazing!  A great mix of colors and different scaled prints.  It's also organic which gives it an amazing texture.

You know who also fell in love with it too?  No, not Steve... but good guess! 


I got the box open and then I had to go fix dinner but she stayed with the fabric dreaming up all kinds of projects to make.  She's definitely my kid! 

I can't wait to make something with this beautiful fabric and I'm thinking that this will be a joint project with Chaney.  She has jumped into sewing with both feet and is doing SO well.  I'm super proud. :)

Happy Friday!  It's a long weekend for me so hopefully I'll get in some sewing...

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Oh, scrap!

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So the response to my scrap de-stashing was more than I expected.  And that's a good thing!

Quilters and sewists never cease to amaze me and I feel so blessed to be a part of such a kind community.   I had emails from those who quilt for charity... college students... unemployed quilters... stay at home moms trying to stretch a single paycheck... even an old friend who is in Africa and happens to be teaching the girls in the village how to sew.

The other thing that completely surprised me were the emails from those with plenty of fabric offering to help cover shipping for those who are really struggling.  Like I said, this is an amazing community.

So now I have over 50 packs to mail out {yes, I really have that many scraps!} so the best way I can think to organize it is alphabetically by last name.  It will probably take me the rest of January to mail everything out so here's the schedule:

A - G {week 1}
H - M {week 2}
N - R {week 3}
S - Z {week 4}

Be looking for the Paypal Invoice notification in your email.  I will invoice you just prior to your shipping week.  If the shipping costs are a burden, please let me know and I will use the donated money to cover your costs.  If I don't get enough of a response for help to cover shipping, I'll just spread the savings out amongst the international recipients since their shipping costs are higher.

If you contacted me prior to 10 AM CST, you will be receiving scraps!  If you missed this cut off, you are still welcome to contact me and I will put you on my list for a future round.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Wednesday Words {scraps}

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This giveaway is now closed.  If you would like to get on the list for my next round of scraps, please email me and I will add you to my list!

The amount of scraps I have in my studio is beyond ridiculous.  And these are good sized scraps just shy of a fat quarter down to charm square and string quilt sizes.  Chaney and I could sew with them for years and never make a dent!

Let's face it, quilting isn't exactly cheap so if you are one of those new quilters who needs a jump start on building your stash or you are just a quilter a little low on cash who could use some extra scraps please click the "email me" button on the right sidebar and send me a short email with your info. 

The only thing it will cost you is shipping {cheapest way possible} which I can bill you via Paypal when the shipping label is generated.  I would love to not charge for shipping but last year was a tough one financially for us and I just can't seem to squeeze that cost out of the budget. :)

I'm doing this honor system-style.  If free would help you out then the scraps are yours for only the shipping cost.  If you already have a huge stash or a mountain of scraps then please let others have a chance first. 

To avoid any confusion or someone leaving their address in the comments, I'm closing comments on this post.  Please email me if you want a scrap pack or have any questions!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


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That sound is my year getting off to a great start!  Happy New Year! 

See those cute little terracotta & aqua triangles?  This is a color combination I've been wanting to use for months.

picture credit here

The colors are inspired from this beautiful picture...

If you saw me talking on Facebook yesterday you would have seen me asking if I could start and finish a quilt in the same day.  The answer for me... no, not quite.

But I have a good excuse.  This book is SO good!  I was reading in my studio so that has to count for something, right?

I'll have the quilt finished tonight which makes me super excited to have my first finish on January 3rd.  But as much as I despise the I-have-a-secret-project-that-I-can't-show-you tease; I really can't show it off because the quilt is for a different site.  Fortunately for me {and you} it's only a secret until the 18th of this month.

PS... I have a new blog header.  Every time I change it I get emails asking how to make one so here's the tutorial!

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