Tuesday 26 February 2013

I Wish My LQS Sold Time

Today is only Tuesday of an insanely busy week in which I expect I will have no time to sew. This is compounded by the fact that this past weekend was also insanely busy so I had time to sew then, either. I'm counting down to March Break and, hopefully, some long sewing sessions!

Today my Sew Sisters Kona Solids Fat Quarter of the Month club came. 

This was the inspiration photo:
I am not usually one for pink (okay, I'm pretty much never for pink) but I like some of these pinks. 

Top to bottom: Candy Pink, Bright Pink, Pomegranate and Rich Red

If I were to be choosing one pink on which to base a quilt it would have to be the lush pomegranate colour. It is in your face pink without burning your retinas and yet it is not girly baby pink which makes me want to throw up. 

I have an ever-growing love of solids, partially due to this club!

Here's to some time to sew...anyone have some to spare?

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Saturday 23 February 2013

I Chickened Out

Remember this quilt top?
Well thanks to a bit of Kona White from my friend C, this quilt top is finished. My original plan was to back it with minky. I love how it feels and I have seen it used on quilts on blogs I follow but I knew this would be a stretch for my skills(pardon the pun).

I bought some pink minky on sale and once I finished this top (or was almost finished) I started sweating. What if I messed it up? What about batting? What if my quilting goes all wonky?

And then I talked to some fellow quilters who cautioned me that minky is stretchy and a big pain in the butt to quilt. So I admit it. I chickened out.

Instead I pieced a back that looks like this:
I notice the colours- the red in particular- look off in this picture. Natural light is so much better than 11:00 at night in the hall.
I think I will practice with some minky and perhaps use it in a future quilt for a backing but this quilt will have a pretty pieced back instead.

I'm glad I chickened out!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Friday 22 February 2013

Thank Goodness for Quilty Friends

It does seem that when you mention that you are a quilter, quilty people come out of the woodwork. Often, in my experience, quilty people are older than myself and usually fairly traditional. When you find not one but two young, modern quilters, then you are one lucky person! And thanks to these wonderful ladies I have some new sewing items:
Thin pins for better paper piecing and special paper for better paper piecing from my friend A.

1/4 m of Kona White to save the day and finish my red/green/blue baby quilt top (I needed one 2 1/2"x WOF piece and I was getting frustrated waiting for my LQS. Enter quilty friend C to save the day!)
Being able to swap stories about quilting, read their blogs and text them when I really need a bit of Kona White is invaluable. I'm so glad to have them!

How about you? Do you have any quilty friends IRL? Or do you get your quilty friend fix via blogs?

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Thursday 21 February 2013


I may have started yet another quilt. That would bring my current works in progress to four five Oops! It is just a simple patchwork quilt for a friend at work who had a new baby last week. He didn't know if he was having a boy or girl, but now that he knows I had to put together a quilt! At least it is all from my stash!

I'm hoping this one will be a quick finish and I can get it to him in the next week or two.

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Tuesday 19 February 2013

Comma Sutra: A Wedding Quilt

I have friends, two high school English teachers, who are getting married this spring. When I saw Comma by Zen Chic I thought it was a perfect fit for this young, punctuation-savvy pair.

I am using a tutorial for a layer cake quilt from Mommy by Day Crafter by Night. This is what her quilt looks like:

At first I had some orientation issues with my blocks, but my hubby figured out I just had them on the wrong angle. The problem now is that I am STILL waiting on my Kona White from my LQS (apparently their shipment was delayed) so I can't piece anything until it arrives. 

Here is a sneak peek (minus the white strips):

I am noticing that I managed to make it more narrow than the tutorial so now I have the dreaded task of unpinning all my squares and laying it out again so it is the right size. I really need a big inspiration board.

Also, I decided that nothing is my stash will work for the backing of the purple patchwork quilt I have been making for a work friend. I ordered Pearl Bracelets in Lilac last night and hope it comes SOON...the mom has just found out she will be on bed rest due to some pre-eclampsia concerns, so this baby is coming sooner than expected. Ach! Baby, give me some time to finish your quilt!

Now since I have no white to get going on the wedding quilt, nor white to finish the turned rectangles baby quilt I have blogged about that is in pink or red, nor the Lilac Pearl Bracelets for the purple patchwork, I have to start another quilt. Obviously. I consider all those quilts to be WIP not UFO since they won't be unfinished for long. I have decided to jump into the flannelette quilt in superhero fabric I am making for my friends' son who turns five in April.

Here's to lots of quilts at the same time!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Monday 18 February 2013

Foxy Blocks: A Finished Quilt (HST QAL)

I am finally finished Foxy Blocks, the quilt made from the blocks I did for the HST QAL with Jeni Baker over at In Color Order.

This quilt has some favourite fabric in it- Outfoxed by Lizzy House. The purple and orange colour scheme has my little person delighted. The quilt will be hers. Even before this quilt was bound it already was used for a fort, cuddling and lots of kitty naps (so it already has lots of cat fur on it). This is the kind of quilt that I see being well loved and not too "precious." She has a hand quilted (and hand pieced!) quilt from my friend's mother that will remain carefully loved. This quilt is for rough love like picnics in the backyard and living room forts with Daddy.

The Kona School Bus binding sure is bright, and I'm not sure it really goes with the bold pink Kona colour on the back (I'll have to check exactly what it is again), but I think it looks great from the front!

Here is Foxy Blocks:

I hope she gets lots of love out of this quilt!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Sunday 17 February 2013

Patchwork in Purple

My current quilting project is a simple patchwork for a friend from work who is expecting her first baby, a little girl, in April. I started out thinking that I would make wonky star blocks for this quilt, but since the majority of the quilt is made from scraps I didn't have the right sizes to do the blocks. The mom-to-be told me she is planning on purple for her nursery, so I wanted a purple quilt. And since I had quite a bit of Lizzy House's Outfoxed leftover from my Foxy Blocks quilt, I decided to use it in this quilt (I LOVE this line and wish I had yards more of the fox print...it is impossible to find anywhere anymore!). I also added some Kona Eggplant and two prints from my stash to round out the purple patchwork.

Now I'm stuck on what to do for the back. I have several larger scraps left that I could use to make a scrappy back, but I am wondering if something more solid would be better. At the same time, I don't really have the patience to order something (I think I would order some Lizzy House Pearl Bracelets in Lavender) so I am going to peruse my stash, play with the scraps, and see how it goes. I may end up ordering the Pearl Bracelets, but I'm not giving in yet!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Wednesday 13 February 2013

Bluebird's Song: A Finished Quilt

A dear friend from work has a two-year-old daughter. Two years ago when this little girl was born, I got to hold her when she was just a few hours old. She was the sweetest, calmest baby! Of course, two years ago I didn't quilt, and so this sweetie pie never received a quilt from me. Her mom and I recently attended a mutual friend's baby shower and when my friend saw the baby quilt I had made (Baby's Birdies) she was in love. She asked if I could make her daughter one- and of course I said yes!

I chose to use a fat quarter bundle of La Dee Da fabric by Erin McMorris for Free Spirit as well as three solids from my stash (Kona Cream, Kona Plum and ? some pale green colour). I ordered it from Fat Quarter Shop this past Christmas when they had an amazing one day sale on all Free Spirit fabrics. I used an Amy Butler print for the main part of the backing, and a white-on-white alphabet print for the white sashing/border. I used a tutorial from The Missouri Star Quilt Company to make the centre blocks. I free motion quilted a meandering stipple all over the quilt in white, and I love it.

And so here is Bluebird's Song!

This is a busy quilt! I think the calmer back and hit of white border helps your eyes rest. I also think choosing a plain solid for the binding- Kona Jade Green in this case- helps with the overall coherency of the quilt.

Also, check out this adorable ribbon I purchased to tie the quilt up for delivery. Singing blue birds! How perfect is that?

I hope this little girl enjoys her quilt- and that her mom loves it too!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Sunday 10 February 2013

I Forgot & Quilt Math Fail

After posting about my stash, my friend C made a comment that made me realize that I forgot a shelf that is in my sewing storage room...my collection of sewing books and my magazine holder of patterns.
This shelf has lots of sewing books but is missing Quilting Modern (I had it out to choose a pattern), We Love Color and Modern Patchwork, two recent purchases.
The majority of my patterns are actually in pdf form and stay on this memory stick.
 So there, I do have ways to store patterns and books.

Also, I decided to work on a baby quilt for a friend's sister. I was inspired by a quilt on Pinterest and decided I could figure out the math. I am usually very math-phobic (something I'm working on) but I thought I could manage this. I played with graph paper, sketches, cut out pieces of paper to flip and turn and still I made a mistake with the calculations! (A little something called seam allowances fooled me in the end. Bah). I trimmed my blocks to make them all square and the results are glorious! I LOVE this baby quilt so far (even with all those finicky 1" strips) and I can't wait to finish it for the new mom and her baby girl.
Now I'm just waiting for my order of Kona White to arrive at my LQS...I purchased 4 metres during their white & beige sale but they were out of stock. I hope it comes soon, because this quilt is on hold until it does!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Saturday 9 February 2013

Stash Confession

My friend C over at The Edgy Perfectionist posted pictures of her stash. I thought her stash photos were: 
a) brave (after all, opening your closet doors and posting pictures on your website takes some guts) and 
b) demonstrative that her stash is not all that big. 

I decided to try to be brave and to also open the doors to my stash. 

This book shelf contains lots of sewing-related items. On the left is a bin with various sewing notions, patterns, etc. The blue striped container holds my "cool" scraps and the polka dot orange and pink container holds my "warm" scraps.
This shelf holds my starch and 505 spray, my jar of selvedges and various other sewing items (plus my hanging Sugar Block Club blocks).
These cloth bins and cardboard boxes (from Canadian Superstore and Ikea, respectively) are currently taking up an entire wall in our basement "bedroom".
Inside Box 1: Kits and Bundles, plus ribbons.
Top of Notions Bin: Leftover bindings and Painter's tape for basting
Inside Notions Bin: Notions, thread, gloves, etc.

Inside Box 2: Batting remnants
Inside Cloth Bin 1: Yardage (anything one yard or more)
Inside Cloth Bin #2: Scraps of flannelette

Inside Cloth Bin #3: Flannelette. I had to pull some out for the picture because this bin is PACKED. I looooove flannelette.
Inside Basket: Various prints (no fat quarters) less than a yard/meter but more than a scrap. Lots of 1/2 and 1/4 cuts.
This is my favourite fabric storage element- a CD shelf from Ikea that holds all my precuts and fat quarters. I looooove it and could easily use another one. My hubby bought me this one.
Some close-ups of the favourite shelf:
Camp Sur, Dots, Chevrons

Various fat quarters, mostly from shopping trips in the US

Lotta, penguins, charm squares

Some more bundles

Solids (top) from Sew Sisters FQ of the Month, Lotta Bella
And that is just in that room. There is more all over my house. Like these bins in my dining room sewing room with projects to be made:
This box with kits, scraps and all those delicious Kona solids from my husband for Christmas:
And more. Seriously. Stacks of fabric turn up in our office, kitchen, all over the place. And since these pictures were taken, two more packages arrived and at least three more are coming this month. :)

So that is MY stash. It is huge. But never big enough. I easily could sew for five years without running out, but what fun is being a quilter if you're not buying fabric as you go? It is important to note that I have been sewing for only two years. A bit scary if you project forward ten years. I think we need a bigger house.

What does YOUR stash look like?

Lynn (aka Buttons).

Friday 8 February 2013

Orange You Glad?

I'm making binding for Foxy Blocks and have decided on an all-orange colour scheme. Fun!
The strips, cut. I'm noticing they look much more red in this photo than orange. Perhaps because it was taken at night? Or with an iPhone?

The picture above gives you a much more accurate idea of the oranges. I slept on the binding problem and knew I wanted to do all orange by the time I woke up. I found it reaffirming that several people commented on the post and also thought all orange and scrappy. I can't wait to get it on today- since it is a snow day!

I also picked a solid for the binding of Bluebird's Song. I have to match the solid to my Kona Colour Card to figure out exactly what it is,(Update: It is Kona Jade Green, which is very turquoisey/tealy) but since the quilt is so busy I think a solid binding will look awesome.

Here's to some sewing over this snowy weekend!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

Thursday 7 February 2013

Binding Quandary

Foxy Blocks is all but done, an HST QAL quilt that will be given to my daughter. She already loves it, and though it still needs binding she has already used it to make a fort in our living room. I would say that is a success.

I used variegated purple thread throughout the quilt. On the main body of the quilt it looks okay, but not great. But I LOVE how it looks on the border. I did a FMQ wave all the way around and it looks so awesome with the fading colours. I don't think this photo does justice to the movement that you see with it in person.

Now I have the quandary of what to bind it with. I pulled out two solid oranges- Kona School Bus and Kona Kumquat, a fat quarter of Lizzy House orange jewels and a fat quarter of some purple and white fabric that I can't recall right now. Both solid oranges are not quite right, but I'm not ordering new fabric just for the binding. The orange jewels would be perfect but I don't think a fat quarter will be enough. Do I do a scrappy binding? Or maybe one of the oranges (I'm leaning School Bus) and the orange jewels together to make the binding? I want contrast with the Kona Eggplant border, but it also has to go with the pinks and purple on the reverse. What a dilemma! 

I'm going to sleep on it. Maybe I will have a brainwave in my sleep!

Lynn (aka Buttons)