December 23, 2011

school spirit

I love facebook for many reasons. Mostly because it has allowed me to reconnect with friends from different stages of my life... childhood, high school, college, sorority, work, etc. But I also love how it has allowed me to share my love of quilting with my friends. And every once in a while, I will get a message from a friend like the one I got from my friend Leighann a few months ago.

"Hey Stefanie- Do you still make quilts? I am looking to have my daughter Abby a Western KY quilt made for Christmas and wondered if you might be interested. The colors are red, black and white."
 So that began a conversation about size, pattern etc. We settled on a twin size quilt and she really liked the Mix Tape Quilt pattern by Elizabeth Hartman. Once I had received the deposit, I got busy ordering fabric, including some custom designed by myself and printed through Spoonflower.

This quilt went together very quickly and would be a great beginner pattern. I would suggest that beginners start with a smaller size. This is the largest quilt I've ever made. It's HUGE and is going to look awesome in her dorm room.

I backed this with Dottie in Christmas Red by Moda and it is just so darn cute. I'm a sucker for red/white polka dots.

Because of the size, I opted to send this out to be quilted on a longarm. I found a local gal who does great work with pantographs and is SO reasonable. I think she only charged me $40 to quilt this (and it was back in two weeks). I just love the loopy look. I have used this same quilter on five other projects and she did a beautiful job on all of them. I will definitely be using her again. She doesn't have a website, so if you are interested in contacting her, please leave a comment and I can email her contact info to you. (PS - If you are a no reply blogger, be sure to include your email address in your comment).

I delivered this quilt (along with two others she ordered) to my friend Leighann last week and she loved them all. That's the most satisfying part... creating an heirloom that will be cherished for years and years.

December 20, 2011

counting stars

I started my journey as a quilter almost two years ago. Since that first stitch, I've finished dozens of projects and this is only the second quilt I've completed for myself. I'm not complaining. It feels good to make something and give it to someone else, but every once in a while, it's nice to make something just for yourself.

I first saw this quilt here. I was instantly in love with it and bought the fabric immediately. I got busy with lots of other things, and was afraid I would let the holiday season pass me by with all the fabric just sitting in a drawer in my sewing room. Then one day, I made up my mind I was going to do this. So I pushed it to the front of my list (even ahead of a few custom quilt orders I had taken) and vowed not to put it aside until it was finished. Since I had three custom quilts to deliver before Christmas, I had to work quickly.

This was one of the larger and easier quilts I've ever made, which I didn't expect just looking at the pattern. It's just so gorgeous and I am so glad I pushed myself. After it came back from being quilted, I got it bound and it is so nice to snuggle up under this by the fireplace while I watch my Christmas tree spin round and round. 

So, my advice to all my fellow craftaholics out there is very simple... make those creative projects for yourself a priority. You deserve something special too!

December 19, 2011

a day at the races

Last month our guild held a Jelly Roll Race. For my non-quilting readers, a jelly roll is an assortment of forty 2.5" fabric strips. You can either create your own assortment or many manufacturers sell them in a range of coordinating fabrics. Basically, you sew the strips together end-to-end and then through the course of five "laps"of folding, sewing and cutting, you end with one quilt top. This is a super-quick way to make a quilt. These won't win any awards, but they keep you just as warm as those that require lots of time. 

I knew I wanted to make something for Christmas. I had already planned a Christmas quilt for myself and knew my husband would want one too. I selected this really cute line of fabrics, you may recognize it from the pillows I posted a few days ago. I thought this quilt turned out really cute and best of all, it took less than two hours to piece. I sent this out to be quilted on a longarm, so all i had left was the binding. Easy peasy!!

December 16, 2011

so, how've you been?

It's been a busy couple of months for this craftaholic and even though my blog hasn't featured any of it (yet), I've been busy crafting lots of pretties. I wanted to share these cut little pillows with you today. I made them for the Music City Modern Quilters Guild Secret Santa Swap. I was lucky enough to be secretly paired with my friend, Chelley. She always has a cute display of seasonal pillows on a little bench in her entryway, and I thought she would like these.

This was a super-simple design and pieced together in no time. Every bit of fabric used on the front was leftover scraps from the quilt tucked beneath the pillows in the photo above. More on that quilt later. I'm such a sucker for using some sort of white, and I can't get enough of straight line quilting these days. I just love the texture it lends to solids.I finished these with a really simple envelope back and added the red with green stripe as binding for a great pop of color. This was my third project using Countdown to Christmas by Sweetwater for Moda and I just love it. I have a few more things I'd like to make with it and I'm hoping I can get one of them done before Christmas (a girl can dream, right?).

This is just a tiny bit of what i've been up to recently, but i have six, yes SIX quilts that I've finished up in the last couple weeks that I can't wait to show you.