This one has been in progress since my friend found out she was having a boy and close the colors/theme for her nursery. Well that little boy is about 18 months old now and I’m finally getting around to quilting this adorable little quilt! And it’s just a simple zigzag so I don’t know why I haven’t done it earlier. My justification is that now he will really be able to use it as a small child instead of just laying on it as a baby. Yeah, that sounds good. Right?
I started quilting it on Monday night, despite being tired. I had to fight off the urge to just veg on the couch and get upstairs to get it started. Now that it’s in progress I want to finish it up ASAP! I’m using my Big Mama Janome 1600P which only does a straight stitch and with the walking foot is perfect for this project!
My goal is to get the quilting finished and binding and washing done (oh don’t forget the label) in time to deliver it to mommy and boy by the time my kid turns 4 because they will be at his party in March.
OK, I’ve put it out into the world so now the obliger in me has to get it done!
These cuties are 4″ square (roughly) The first blocks of my #mysmallworldqal2! I used a tutorial for Quarter Square Triangles that I found on pinterest and it make it so much faster. I’m going to avoid cutting and sewing triangles as much as possible. I’m pinning stuff to my pinterest board called My Small World QAL 2 if you are interested. I’m craftygirlanna on Pinterest.
I was so proud of myself when I finished these blocks! They are super cute and represent something so fun and the excitement I feel when I start a new project. Keep reading for the public service announcement (PSA) about the pattern.
A quick PSA for those who are doing the #mysmallworldqal2 the instructions are listed with FINISHED block measurements. So if you have to trim up a block be sure you are calculating the UNFINISHED size. i.e. a 4″ block in the pattern should really be 4.5″ I overlooked that point when I was figuring which block to make and my hourglass blocks are 4″ unfinished. Yes, that’s going to throw off my pattern by roughly 1/2″ in various spots.
On another note, I’ve always struggled with accurate seam allowances and even though I followed the instructions for the pinwheels and they should have been 4.5″ unfinished mine came out to 4.25″! That’s how I figured out about the finished/unfinished size thing.
So personally because I used all of my blue fabric for the pinwheels, I’m trimming mine down to 4″ to match my wrong hourglass blocks. I’ll just have to make it work (it could be a disaster!) I wanted to share my mistake to help others avoid frustration!
I typically stay away from any project that has a time line even if it’s just a quilt along hosted on Instagram or a blog. Trying to actually make a quilt block every week is so difficult in my busy life. But since my mother in law gave me the amazing My Small World quilt pattern by Jen Kingwell for Christmas and Nicole announced that she was hosting a QAL part 2 I decided to do it. She was very clear that this is a low key thing and work at your own pace (which for me could mean I’ll be lucky to finish this small quilt before my 4 year old graduates for high school).
Because it’s primarily an Instagram QAL I’ve shared my thoughts in a few posts and I’m tagging them with #mysmallworldqal2 but I’m going to share them here as well, just for the heck of it. At some point I’ll figure out how to feed my IG into my blog but until then, here is my set of initial thoughts about my preparation that I shared on IG.
I got the FPP templates printed (to get foundation paper piece templates, check out this post on Sew What Sherlock’s blog), I’ve read all the blog posts from round one of the QAL, I’ve gathered some low volumes for the sky and I’ve decided to use my favorite fabric in the world, my Amy Butler hoard for the fun parts.
I’ve already learned that
a) the printed pattern (not from the magazine) does not seem go in order of the sections
b) the FPP templates were roughly printed to follow the sections so I cut all the templates out and grouped them then labeled them with what page they are on (that’s the plastic baggies in the picture) This will help me know how many to make.
c) The number of FPP templates does not exactly align with what the pattern requires but that’s no biggie I can always print more.
d) Also I really need more low volumes so if anyone wants to do a trade, let me know.
Finally I’ve decided to embrace the wabi-sabi nature of how I piece and not sweat the small stuff. If pieces don’t line up, I’ll just add some to make it work. This isn’t for a show, it’s not for being judged it’s just for me to enjoy and learn something and finish something! This wasn’t on my original ufo list but hopefully it stays on my WIP list instead.
I’ll be sharing some more insights that I find along the way (at least two more posts coming soon) so if you want to get them, be sure to sign up for email posts or add me to bloglovin.
For Friendship Friday today I’d like to feature a new friend I’ve made through the Houston Modern Quilt Guild. Cathy is her name and Winter’s Wanderings is her blog. She is amazingly talented and so sweet! Just look at this awesome Hawaiian block she made after attending a workshop at Quilt Festival! Not only that, but she went home and made MORE! She’s a very patient and experienced quilter and I just know that I have so much I can learn from being around her. In this season of thanksgiving, I like to reflect on my blessings and meeting Cathy was definitely a blessing for me this year. If you have some time today, I hope you will jump on over to her blog and say hi! Tell her Anna sent you.
Today I’d like to feature the San Antonio chapter of the Modern Quilt Guild (SAMQG). This group is where I first learned about modern quilting and I feel that being a part of this group has made me a better quilter and I’ve made some really awesome friends along the way. Every month I was inspired to finish something amazing to show the group but I never felt that if I only brought my most recently finished quilt top that they would be any less impressed with it, and believe me, finishing just a top was always a big accomplishment for me. This guild is full of ladies who are creative, funny and inspirational, every single month! The SAMQG is what I would call my “home” guild because they are the first modern quilt guild I ever joined (helped start actually) and I still have close ties with them. Now that I’ve moved to Houston, I’m an active member of the HMQG and I am grateful for the friends I’ve made in the HMQG (check back for a Friendship Friday feature of one of the HMQG members). I just feel that there is nothing like the first guild you ever join and feel connected to. So if you are in San Antonio, or moving to the area, look up the SAMQG on Facebook, they have a super active group and they will welcome you right away so that moving to a new city won’t feel so new.
A friend of mine from the San Antonio Modern Quilt Guild (SAMQG), Jen Eskridge, just posted today that she’s starting a new Small Sews Gifts Sew Along that is right up my alley! It’s mostly up my alley because I kinda suggested it. You see, the SAMQG has a gift exchange at their annual Holiday Party and this year we decided that instead of swapping a specific item (in the past we’ve swapped mug rugs and pillows), this year we voted for leaving it open slightly to include ANY small item (that was my suggestion to add to the voting options for our guild vote). We even created a totally awesome GROUP Pinterest board so that we can ALL pin our ideas and see what everyone else thinks is fun to make. Since it’s a gift exchange, the sort where you can steal an item three times before it’s “frozen” and what you get is a complete mystery until you open it, the suspense is really building! As as I’m sort of a Last Minute Lucy, I have of course not made a single thing (but pinned lots of ideas) for this exchange. So I have to get in gear which is WHY the Sew Along that Jen just announced is PERFECT timing! I hope you’ll play along because she even has some PRIZES lined up!!
I just love a little extra motivation for something I already want to do! Oh and did I happen to mention that Jen is a published author AND offers amazing quilty workshops!? I’m hoping the HMQG will be able to host her for a workshop some time next year. Her hexagons are awesome!
Check back next week for another bloggy friend!
Each Thursday I will post some sort of poll or question because the best way to make this blog enjoyable is to hear what YOU think about quilting and sewing. Occasionally, I might post a life update or something, but I’m going to try to make this blog interactive and more of a two way discussion than the typical, I post/you read or comment type of blog. Thanks to everyone who responded to the post last week! I had 17 people reply and the experience among those of you who responded was pretty evenly split between New, Intermediate and Experienced quilter/sewist! With that in mind, it will really help me decide what sorts of tutorials to focus on for the future. Now, I hope you’ll share a little more with me about being in a Modern Quilt Guild.
I have several WIPs of course, but this is one that I’m so happy to have completed! These are bee blocks for the November Blue Bee of Sew. Quilt.Give. This is the second month I’ve been able to participate and these wonky cross blocks were super fun! The best part about this bee is that all the quilts will be donated to a deserving group. I love being able to experiment with new blocks and know that my contribution will help keep someone warm. I still have several other blocks to make for my HMQG 4×5 bee and even one for a super secret bee project! This Saturday is the monthly meeting for the Houston Modern Quilt Guild so I feel like I need to hurry up and finish up some WIPs so I have something to share at Sew and Tell! I feel like the guild is the main reason I actually finished anything at all. That and being able to post it to Flickr, Instagram or Facebook, I sort of thrive on social quilting media, but really, nothing can replace actually seeing people in real life (IRL). Maybe on Friday I’ll have something to share for Finally Finished Friday (which I just made up by the way).
Are you working on anything right now? Has everyone started holiday projects?
What is modern quilting? Well, the images above are a few examples what I’ve made in the last year that I’d consider modern. The National Modern Quilt Guild has a description of how they view “modern quilting” on their website. I like their definition, I feel it encompasses a lot about what “modern minded quilters” do. I have to admit though, I just love the ability to be wonky and quilt how I want to. I find it hard to quilt inside the lines and enjoy thinking “outside the blocks” when I make quilts.
When I first started quilting, I didn’t know what I was doing, I knew that fabrics were pretty, charm packs were abundant and (relatively) cheap and having everything already cut made life so much easier! I bought kits galore (some which I still have stashed away, and some I still can’t resist purchasing) because having a pattern and all the fabric already selected made it so much easier to just make what was on the picture and I knew the result would be good. Now, my aesthetic has changed, my view has changed and following a pattern has become much more difficult for me. Picking out fabrics has become the FUN part of planning a quilt project. I don’t always stick with one designer or one line of fabric anymore, but those building blocks helped me when I first started out.
I have heard it said, and I agree, that attending the Improvisational Patchwork workshop taught by Denyse Schmidt to the SAMQG back in November of 2010 was sort of a turning point in my (and other’s) quilting life. She gave us the freedom look at quilting as an art and not be boxed in by set patterns and a reason to use up our crazy scraps! When I just want to have a fun, lazy afternoon of quilting, I make improv blocks because they don’t require a lot of thought but they are incredibly satisfying to create.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little glimpse into the world of Modern Quilting. I’m planning to do a regular Modern Monday feature so check back next week for more modern!
I think I’m getting addicted to this blogging thing!! I hope I can keep up the pace because it’s been so fun to use this as an outlet for the random things in my head almost every day plus I totally needed another website to check obsessively throughout my commute to and from work. (I’m a little addicted to checking the visitor stats on my new blog, thanks to all 20 of you who have visited me so far!) So today I thought I’d feature one of my best quilty friends, Danielle from Nacho Mama’s Quilt. We met back in 2010 when the San Antonio Modern Quilt Guild was just starting, in fact, we both agreed to be board members and help start the guild from scratch. That was a super tough time in my life, I was going through a divorce and realizing that you really can’t plan out your entire life in advance because if you do, it will flip upside down! Well, the formation of the SAMQG was a God-send and so was meeting Danielle. She’s a vibrant person, she’s full of life and experience and she takes amazing pictures! She is a totally kick-you-know-what long arm quilter as well. Just recently, since she has been able to find her solid foundation in San Antionio, her Long Arm quilting talent has started to shine through. She’s also been my life line since my little family picked up and moved to Houston. In fact, she’s from Houston, which makes her all the more awesome! Every time we talk on the phone, what is intended to be a 30 minute conversation turns into a couple of hours and she always seems to be able to make time in her amazingly busy schedule to talk to me. We are partners in “quilty crime” and we love to scheme and plan, even if it never turns into anything, it just helps to have someone to bounce idea off of. Oh and did I mention that she was instrumental in making the SAMQG the amazeballs (had to use that word!) guild that it is today? She took the reigns and did what she does best which is delegate and lead and she made sure that everyone felt welcome and united and it really shows in the guild today (and I’m only a long distance member).
If you are ever in need of long arm services, you should consider Danielle because she is truly an amazing quilter and I’m pretty sure you’ll end up with an awesome new friend along the way.
So tell me, who is your best quilty friend or who has made a significant difference in your quilty life?