Quilt ADD in therapy

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Colorado, United States
Other than my family, the passion of my life is quilting. An eclectic, I love any and every style that makes me smile. Traditional? Awesome, especially with historic or family story connections. Modern? Fun! Free! Cheery! Paper piecing? How cool can you get?

Sunday, August 24, 2014

BOMs Away & Belt Boards

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.bo
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
Hey, how are you all?  If you're in California, I sure hope your property is OK. I don't miss the earthquakes of my teen years, that's for sure.
I pulled out Heart & Home again this week. Got all my sashing strips made, and did the bits of hand stitching that wanted doing before it was bulkier to hold:

Hearts floating from a chimney, rails on a rooftop. . .

But the buttons for the yo-yo tree and the panes of several windows were left for post-quilting finish work.
I would have made further progress in my assembly during the short sewing time I had today, were it not for this boo-boo:
(This picture has the best color representation of the fabrics.)
Got it ripped out and resewn, and now that project is at this point:

Before I insert this week's link-up for BOM work sharing, I wanted to journal this bit of family activity:
 August 2nd was belt-testing day again at the dojang. Everyone in the family now studies Taekwondo, and all but Marissa tested this cycle. Marissa didn't participate, because she'd just returned from her summer in Florida. Like: Literally! We pulled into the driveway from the airport with barely enough time to grab the uniforms and run to the school.
We've been doing up a fun scrap-boarding "thing" of our own to mark our journey through the belt ranks toward Black Belt. At each belt test, the last item is to break your 1" board doing the prescribed strike or kick of the cycle. (I hear there are multiple boards at higher levels.) You leave with your board pieces. 
Well, Devon and I somehow came up with the idea months ago to paint something meaningful on our initial boards, intending to hang the subsequent smaller sides on the bottom as we go. We finally got the last board sprayed a couple of days ago, and hook-n-eyes screwed in, ribbons tied, so that they could be hung as a group.
Devon painted a beautiful bonsai, because studying Taekwondo restored a sense of inner peace for her after a very difficult couple of years.
I researched Korean art and culture to find a way to symbolize that I study Taekwondo to battle for good health. Seriously, my main purpose of doing this sport is to keep my feet on my body despite severe circulation and peripheral neuropathy issues. In Korean classical art, a cat and butterfly together signify vitality and longevity. I can't remember how to pronounce the two words I painted in - seung something, but that's what they mean. 
Marissa chose a golden deer because it's a mythical creature in Korean culture that caught her fancy.
Heather went with a koi to represent perseverance in the face of adversity (they swim upstream) and academic success (she had just graduated from college). She fights a couple health issues of her own and has scoliosis that gets painful.
Scott wanted to do a dragon.  In fact, he went and bought wood-burning tools so he could do this the way he wanted after getting Heather to draw one out on paper for him. Well, I can relate to that as far as quilting tools go, so I just smiled.  :)   He was rather tickled that he broke his board into 3 pieces. The turtles represent the foundation of this new study for him.
This positioning should last us another year before we'll need to raise the nails for the rest of the belt levels. We'll be adding green, purple, blue, brown, brown-senior, red, red-senior, bodan 1, bodan 2, black belt eligible, and then our blacks. That's the full intention, and we'll see how much time it takes to get there!

So, with that out of the way - have you been able to work on your BOMs recently?

Friday, August 22, 2014

Flimsy Alert!! Wait! Make that TWO!!

I'm so excited for this week's Friday, because I finally have some finishes to share! For an entire calendar year, my double wedding ring has monopolized the priority spot at my machines. Now that it's machine work is completely finished and it's overtaken the hand-work station, other things can run through the machines.  :D

(Isabeau just LOVES this quilt. Every time I unfold it to get some more tissue cleaned off and ends tied/tucked, she tears into the room and tucks herself in or under it.)

My "finishes" to share today are flimsies still, but when you work with big quilts almost exclusively, this state qualifies for Finish link-ups in my book. 

The first one is "Modernology."

This was a straight-up kit that I fell hard for when I saw it in Hawthorne Thread's newsletter (really great shop, by the way). The fabric collection is "Modernology" by Pat Bravo, and the pattern is "Quiltology," also by Pat and available free at this link. Until last week, this quilt had been in progress strictly as a leader-ender from December until I finished piecing the DWR. I got maybe seven of the rows made that way. Then it just sat and looked at me sadly for when it could have attention again.

(Marissa and Dev kept giggling at the breezes that made it challenging to get a full-on shot. Made us all smile!) 

But once the machines were cleared, I went to town on finishing the rows and assembling the whole!!  These fabrics and the modern, clean design seriously made my heart sing. I even have the exact backing that the original was done up in - see it in this Art Gallery Fabrics promo photo here (fabulous fabrics that feel so wonderful)? Seriously - how can you look at that picture of this lady wrapped up so snuggly with that sun-shiny back peeking out around the crisp, fun hexy front and not have to buy that kit?  Not one single regret here about that impulse purchase!

(photo from the kit shoot, not mine)

I'm not sure what to use for batting. The fabrics are so lusciously light - like voiles, and I want a nice, soft handle for this quilt. I also need it to be the pure white of the bleached choices. I can't decide! cotton? silk? (is there even bleached silk batting to be had?) a super thin and high-quality poly?  I'll probably go with 80/20 cotton/poly and a not-dense quilting theme. But I'd love any input on the batting.

My second finish is "Fireflies in the Meadow."

And while we're admitting to impulse purchases, let's address this year's indulgence! A couple weeks ago I fell head-over-heels for the quilt Kate made (of Katie Mae Quilts blog), and when I asked if she minded if I made one too, she not only said go right ahead, but provided me with a link of where to find the fabric! 

I really loved not only the mitered border from the hem print, but the way Kate had sewn the companion fabrics in clean rows with feature inserts. But I didn't want to completely copy her, so I split my rows randomly instead of straight down the middle like hers. I can't decide which way I like better - they're both super cool. But talk about whizzing along - after all the intricate projects I work with, this zoomer was a joy to fly through in about 4 hours flat from fussy-cutting the Wee Wanders inserts to connecting the miters at the corners. Joy, joy, joy!  :D

Isn't this quilt perfectly at home in front of our common meadow area? Too bad we're at way too high an altitude for fireflies! Wouldn't *that* be an awesome photo shoot?

Hope you're enjoying the end of summer. Now that I've worked out some of my feelings of constriction from the longest priority project of my life, my machine time will be refocused on finishing up long-standing UFOs. I'm antsy to get back around to both of these, though, so hopefully you'll see them again before year's end.  :D

Linking up at:

Monday, August 18, 2014

BOMs Away - the one around Family Time with Mike & Dawna & David

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.bo
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
Hey!  I am so sorry, you guys - Scott's brother, wife, and one of their sones have been here from out of state (who we haven't seen for years), so things have been busy and focused on them! The first part of today we all spent at Garden of the Gods, climbing around and enjoying the gorgeous scenery under a beautiful sky.  Then it started clouding up for an afternoon storm, so it was back here to the house for us all. (After a yummy stop at the smoothie shop!)
Marissa, David, & Heather
Scott & David

Me & Scott - goofy grins on the selfie feature of my phone  :)
Scott, Heather, Marissa, David, and Random Folks also enjoying the day
Other big news is that my Dragonfly Party quilts, quilted by Kay Bell and Judi Madsen (blogged about at this link) were in the "Quilt! Knit! Stitch!" special exhibit in Portland this weekend. Big thanks to Margaret Gunn for sending me a photo of them at the show!   I was so very disappointed that I couldn't find a way to get out there, but as it turned out, I'm glad I didn't miss our family visit.  :)
Now for BOM stuff. August is all "messed up" in regards to my normal BOM habits.  I stuck with the Heart & Home quilt instead of working on another one.  Since my last report I got all the stitching done on the applique work for the focal house blocks and half of the stitching done for the border applique blocks. I like a small blanket-stitch choice on my machine.
I also got the yo-yo's made and stitched on by hand for the one tree. Turned out cool!
When I do applique, I like to trim out the "guts" on the backside, which greatly increases the quilt's drapability - especially when you're working with fusibles. (Which is why I take the time to trim my fusible pieces to 1/4" outlines instead of solid shapes.)


Have you been able to work on your BOMs recently? Since I missed posting the host spot last week, feel free to link up any extra posts you'd made previously as well.  :D

Sunday, August 3, 2014

BOMs Away - Ruffled Roses

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.bo
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
I accidentally did Ruffled Roses this week instead of Kelly's BOM. I guess I'm just getting eager for this top to get finished since it's relatively so very close now. I started working on it late summer of 2011. Clearly, it's never had priority status, always being relegated to my hand-work tote and to one-Sunday-a-month BOM work. It being such complex quilt doesn't help speed the work up, either.  ;D
But look at all the components that are finished for this week's report! Today I got month nine's 4 baskets and 3 swag units finished. I also did up month ten's 3 swag units since the appliqued cornerstones from that set of the instructions got finished this week in my hand-work time. I think those have been in progress for about 4 months. Look at all the berries on each one!  (Two more get placed over the open stem ends after those seams have been sewn in the basket border.)

I am sick of piecing now, so it's a good thing that my priority work that I return to tomorrow is quilting, instead!  Not for long, though. . . only four more hours of that work left and it will be time to prep and attach the binding! But that's for another day's post.
Have you been able to work on your BOMs recently?

Sunday, July 27, 2014

BOMs Away - Heart & Home

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.bo
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
Well, I wasn't happy with how little progress appeared to be last week on Heart & Home, so I pulled it back out this week instead of giving attention to Fiesta Mexico.
I cut out all the sashing and borders pieces for the finishing stage so I could be certain of what was still available for the appliques, yo-yo's, and border hearts.

And then I finished placing the shapes I traced and cut last week, got those re-cut, and fused them onto all the blocks that get them:
I need to gather the 4 yo-yo's, stitch all the applique pieces down and make 48 berries, then I can put everything together!
How has your BOM work gone lately? 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
I didn't get as much work done on my Heart & Home BOM as I thought I would. It took a lot longer to trace out all the applique pieces on the fusible stuff, then cut those out and "gut" them.  I got all the brown and black pieces attached to the fabrics and cut out again, ready to be applied.
(I do that both to maximize my fusible supply and to cut way down on the stiffness of the quilt. First, the fusing doesn't stiffen the center of the shape, and second, I can still cut away the background fabric in the middle of each shape.)  Lots and lots of leaves for this quilt! 
I got all the brown pieces fused onto the central blocks and the four applique border blocks. But they'll all sit pretty on my design wall until the next third Sunday!
How has your BOM work gone lately? 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

BOMs Away - Strolling the Block, & Tanya is So Cool!

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
Today I've spent my quilting time stitching details and buttons on three houses on Kelly's "Strolling the Block" quilt.
Lots of different thread colors came into play, and keeping them organized was nicer than prior times because of the wonderful giveaway package Tanya (of Tanya Quilts in CO) sent me!

Check out that nice, over-sized needle book. The gorgeous blue one in a pic below is what I've been using - bought it from a lady in Latvia via Etsy, and I adore it - but it's rather small, and as I do a lot of hand applique, I always have several different silk threads on needles. The blue book's pages are so little, the threads hang all out and get tangled.
Well, When Tanya made this book, she used a nice size that resolved that issue. Also - check it out: She sewed the pretty flowers on the fronts of the pages, and tacked a loose-lying line of ricrac on the backs. So I can just pass my threaded needle up through that rickrack line and bring it over the top and secure it on the bottom of the wool page. The threads stay untangled and don't slop all out of the book.
I also find the cover-pockets super handy for my little embroidery scissors, a few pins, my ziplock baggie of berry forms and scraps for those, etc. And the matching pin cushion is such a happy place to put more pins and let the berry forms rest while I'm actively using them.
She even sent a little box of cake-chocolates (delish!) and the scraps from these projects.

You guys'll have to go check out the Woodland Alphabet quilt top she just finished and the  Journey of a Quilter BOM that she's stitching on  these days.  :)
So, the BOM work that I did today:
The September house is predictably a schoolhouse. When I was shopping for some apple and letter buttons, I found this super-fun nerd set instead. Kelly was, and her hubby and three sons are every one of them super-smart eggheads (a respectful term in our family). So this set is far more perfect on her quilt than normal elementary symbols.
I just love the little kid, and the molecule group was perfect for a little toy dog he'd built.
And seriously, if you know her son that I'll be sending this to, you'd know just why there was no way I could pass up a button pack that spells out BaZnGa in such a fun nerdy way with elemental chart components. :D
I also decorated the October block.
Kelly loved Halloween, so I decked this house all out for her. Ghosties, a spider on a web, dancing skeleton, bats, witch's hat. . . and I had a little fun embroidering stems on some of the squashes/pumpkins and putting straw coming out the arms and legs of the scarecrow. Oh, and let's give that crow some eyes and feet!
There! All ready for a party such as the one she went to with her hubby in 2008 (her next-to-last) - and check out that jello brain she'd made!  Kelly was super crafty that way!
I also did the November block. A few gourds and leaves and a cornucopia button wanted to go on. 
Hmmm. . .  I forgot to give the turkey some eyes and feet.  I'm tired of sitting right now, though, so that's going to wait until next month.
Have you worked on any BOMs this past week or so?