Thursday, July 9, 2009

Another Order Goes Out...

There is a little-documented phenomena that I first discovered when I was a child, busily transcribing my doings into little puppy-adorned journals at the end of the day: If I am having fun, I have absolutely no time to tell anyone else about it!

So, if things get a little quiet...just assume I'm having me some fun, alright? I've been busy! Really I have! Moving craft room headquarters, making up some gifts, finding new fabric for a quilt I'm working on...

For now, I'll just get you a little more up to speed with this:

A sweet lady in Florida ordered some fleece blocks from my shop for her little man. Since I didn't really specify a size in the etsy listing, and she didn't specify any preference...I made them in two sizes: Big, and Ridiculous.

Sure hope the little man likes them! Each block is made of fleece, stuffed with fleece scraps (because I really hate to throw anything away that could be useful!) and has three wee jingle bells sewn inside so the Thrower can't get lost while playing with them! (When I worked in Hong Kong, my trainer made sure there were a few jingle bells attached to my backpack, for this very same reason. My little 5'4" body couldn't keep up with her 5'8" one. Besides, she had the advantage - she had a head full of blond ringlets. It was nearly IMPOSSIBLE to lose her in a sea of Chinese people! My second partner was Korean. I was toast. I lost her three times a day.)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Something Old, Something New

This table runner is my first quilted project in over ten years! My first project was an enormous quilt for my twin sister, Myrnie. Our bedrooms were joined by a bathroom, with a door on either side. I worked on that quilt in my room, late into the night, for at least two weeks. Myrnie Never. Knew.


The quilt started falling to pieces after a few years. (Sorry, Myrnie.) I was so discouraged, I lost all interest in quilting.

Until recently.

I found a quilt pattern that I fell in love with, and decided that BBJ must receive one for her third birthday, coming up in a few months.

Seeing as I hadn't actually done any quilting in the past ten years, I decided to start small. A quilted table runner, made from upcycled linens. I wanted something I could set in the middle of the table to hold serving bowls at dinner time. It needed to be able to withstand the heat and spills of our dinner, be completely washable, and protect the table.

Here's what I came up with. It's two nine patch blocks. Each patch is made up of nine little patches. Make sense? If you follow the link above, you'll see a great tutorial on how to do this with very little effort.

It's not perfect. In fact, I'm fairly certain I made at least one mistake every step of the way. (Unfortunately, there were so many mistakes, I can't even remember them all. Hopefully I'll fix the mistakes that I do remember, next time.) The blocks don't line up, I sewed the binding on backwards, and I quilted every column going one way, and every two going the other way...on a 9 block pattern. So...there's a spot at the end where the quilting is much closer together, since there was an extra row!

I'm asking my quilting buddies out there for advice. (Mrs. D, I'm looking at you.) I don't dislike this project, but I want the quilt I make for BBJ to be better. Any advice for me?? I wanted to do free motion quilting on this project, but I don't have a darning foot for my machine, so that will have to wait. Oh, and I tried stippling at one point, so there's a little corner of the runner that's stippled. Heh.