Monday, December 17, 2007

All you'd want for xmas

My first two finished projects! Hurrah! For family grab bag gifts, I took a class at a LQS to make two no-fuss pillows.

First try: mauve and cream strips were too similar in width. Though mauve flowers do appear in the fabric, only a smidgen shows up in the center square.

Second try: made the mauve strip narrower. Proportions better? Most guys would probably say less pink is better.

Quilted the fish, leaves and fan by outlining with thread (that was scary!). Stitched in the ditch around the mauve and cream strips. But why bother when the finish product hardly shows any of this?

For the second top, used Patsy Thompson's trapunto technique, but without the fancy thread painting. Except behind the fish and fan, there is no other batting - just the pillow itself. Not much difference, just better FMQ.

Maybe batting was not thick enough. Used Warm & Safe - light and flat Would a loftier (polyester) batting make a difference? May go for pillow number 3.

One ended up larger than the other: 17" across and 17.5" (not counting the flange). With a 18" square pillow form, the former is stuffed whereas the corners on the latter don't quite fill out. I'm all for the stuffed sausage look.

These were not quite no-fuss, but I'm happy with them. A Merry Xmas to whoever gets one! And a Merry Xmas to all!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Do the 2008 hustle

She has a spot reserved for me! It's not until October 2008 but as soon as they started accepting enrollments, I immediately rushed off my deposit for Nancy Crow's workshop Best of Strip Piecing I&II Now there's only six spots left.

For the past six months, I've been building my stash of solid colors in preparation for this. With about 30 colors I'm only a quarter or at best a third of the way toward the 60-100 colors for the supply list. Then there's the more. Gotta hustle!

I also need to do more quilting. Or woe, what will I have to show for my 3-minute presentation? This newbie is intimidated and still haven't finished the very first one that got me going down this road. But I'm determined to get over it by working on extra blocks or small quilts first.

I could join the many exciting challenges posed on quiltart but I really don't have the time for them. I could do a block-a-month at one of the local quilt shops. But traditional piecing is not where I want to go. Yea, but, excuses, excuses.

Also signed up for workshops in February and March through the East Bay Heritage Guild With these and probably others and with life and work, I will be hard pressed to satisfy my own challenge for 2008: a small 12x12 quilt each month.

So the word for 2008: hustle. I will finish several small quilts to try out gazillion things. I will continue to expand my knowlege by taking classes and workshops. I will finish my first quilt. Feel the pressure!

Am I mad? You betcha. As Captain Picard says, Make it so!