Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Perferred Palette Challenge

So, back at Sewing Summit, my new besties came up with the idea of keeping the fun growing by doing a monthly challenge.  The idea is that we have a partner pick a palette for us that is different from the one we normally use.  We get to make whatever we like, but we have to push ourselves to create with colors we don't normally use.

I get to pick colors for the lovely Shannon of Sew Your Own Way (LOVE her).  Her favorite colors are purple and orange, and she loves halloween fabrics.  She put together a mosaic of her usual/favorite palette:

Preferred Palette Challenge November 2012

So, with this in mind, I hit up the great color inspiration site Design Seeds.  So many amazing palettes to choose from.  But for some reason this grabbed me.


I think maybe because it was totally different from Shannon's usual style and because it reminded me of my trip to Istanbul, and I liked it!  The colors from this palette I chose was coral, cactus, mustard and pink.


And, because I really liked how MaLora did an inspiration collage for my colors on her post here, I searched google images to create one for Shannon.  I really love seeing the palette in action.  It's kinda like spring and fall's offspring!  


Have fun Shannon.  I'm really enjoying this challenge, stay tuned for updates on my fabric pull for the colors MaLora chose for me, this is definitely going to be a challenge!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Mendocino Weekender

Well, you've seen it all over blog land folks, the famous Amy Butler Weekender bag pattern.  There have been some AMAZING ones popping up.  Check out my weekender pinterest board, such eye candy!  So, after coming back from Sewing Summit, I was down.  I missed my new friends, I missed the amazing creative, collaborative, energized environment.  I was in a slump.  So, I needed a fix.  A sewing fix.  

So, like any (i)rrational person, I decided to start a weekender bag.  It was just the rush I needed.  I was contemplating using my precious mendocino fabric, but was worried because (1) I only have a little; (2) I paid a fortune for it; and (3) I have only made a few bags.  I went back and forth.  I even texted Jennifer from Knotted Thread at some unreasonable hour (forgetting about the time difference) to get her sage advice.  As you can see I decided to go for it.  I'm kinda a go big or go home kinda gal, all or nothing.  I live at the extremes baby.

So as soon as the weekend after Sewing Summit came, I got to work.  I decided to do the quilt as you go method from Oh, Fransson.  I spent Friday night doing laundry and cutting out all my batting and canvas pieces and pulling out my coordinating stash.  I did a check in on Instagram to see if I should do just pink and plums or add the gold/yellow.  Overwhelming response was add gold/yellow.  Don't you just love this collaborative community!  Then on Saturday I was a piecing, quilting machine (for me).  I shamelessly let my son watch his favorite DVD in the morning, and then he took a 3 hour nap, jackpot!  

Sadly, Sunday was back to family and work duties.  It's been a busy work week.  And the pieces are just sitting on my dining room table taunting me.  I hope to get to spend a lot of quality time with this Weekender in progress this weekend!  Wish me luck.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Sewing Summit Recap

Wow, so .... Sewing Summit.  One word:  AMAZING.  Really, a dream come true for me.  While I may be new to sewing, blogging about sewing, etc. I am obsessed with it.  I have "met" so many amazing, talented, supportive and funny quilters and sewers on-line through twitter, IG and Flickr.  And thanks to Sewing Summit, I actually got to hang out with all of them ... live person.  It was like summer camp, so much fun!!!  So, what was it like?  Well ....

I got to shop for fabric with other fabric loving friends, which I had NEVER done before.  So much fun.  I also got to see some new fabric from Riley Blake that is coming out soon, that I MUST HAVE!.  I was pretty good and only bought 3 or 4 yards.  I am slow to unpack, so I haven't taken pictures of the loot yet!

I also got to meet the two British beauties Katy and Laura Jane.  They were sooooooooo nice, with adorable accents, and super fun to hang out with.

I also got to meet Kristina and Shannon and MaLora (not pictured), who immediately became my new BFF's.  Seriously a highlight of the trip.  I miss them soooooo much already.

And hang out with Shannon, Kristina and MaLora and drink wine, eat chocolate and talk about fabric, pretty dreamy right?

I also got to meet these uber talented quilting rock stars, Megan, Megan, and Jeni.

And finally meet Amy and Terri, more twitter and IG friends.  Amy gave me a Paul Frank watch and Terri bought me a beer.  Seriously, super sweet girls.  And talented.  I love Terri's Etsy Shop.

And, I got to see Katy's amazing swoon quilt, modelled by the snarky short girls Amy and Audrie (whom I was also super thrilled to meet, as she is even funnier and awesomer in person).  

And go to this fabulous mixer hosted by Amy and her Salt Lake City MQG.  The swag giveaways at that party was unreal.  I was so bummed we showed up late (we were sewing!) but Shannon won an amazing bundle of pinks from Pink Chalk Fabrics that she gave me, cause she's a rock star like that.

And I got to do hand stitching projects in the lobby in my PJ's with tons of other fun women.  Like I said, summer camp.  And I met a ton of other amazing people that I didn't get pictures of, you know who you are!

And, I got to see TONS of amazing handmade items, like this super cute pouch Amy had, and all the gorgeous weekenders that Laura and Amber and many others made.  I ordered the pattern, and it's on my to-do list.

Oh, and classes, let's not forget about classes (although it's really about the people!).   I got to take so many awesome classes.  I made a skirt, a scarf, learned new quilting techniques (like curves!), learned more about zippers and interfacing from the amazing Sara, learned about photography, and blogging.  Phew!  It was an exhausting few days, but worth every tired bone in my body.

I got delayed coming home (which was soo sad as I was dying to see my baby), so I made good use of the time, and made a few hexie flowers.

And then I got to come home to this adorable munchkin who turned 2 the day before (yes, mommy missed his birthday, but threw him a rocking Elmo party the weekend prior).

I can't wait for next year.  This year I was one of the lucky first 50 who registered and received a discount.  I am going to start training for next year's registration now, I can't imagine missing out!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Tula Pink QAL: Hushabye Quilt

Tula Pink Sew Along
It's my turn on the fabulous Sew Sweetness Tula Pink Sew along.   Full details here.  I can't believe I was able to participate in something so epic!  I am a new quilter, but have fallen in love with Tula Pink and have tried to snatch up what I could of her existing and past lines (that a few shops luckily still had in stock).  I was assigned the Hushabye Pattern, a great pattern to show of Tula Pink's amazing creatures and designs with a little fussy cutting.  
I knew this pattern would be a perfect way to mix up some of Tula's fabulous lines.  I used Prince Charming frogs for the fussy cut features, and then mixed in some more Prince Charming, Plume, Parisville and some Birds and the Bees.  I just love how all the fabrics came together.

I stuck with the pattern.  The only modifications I made was that I used a different fabric for the large border triangles than the frog fabric and the pattern calls for using the same fabric.  Tula's pattern says this is an intermediate pattern.  I would agree.  There are a ton of bias edges to sew for the borders.  The  center part are just pin wheels made of half square triangles and set on point.  That's easy.  The borders though are all triangles.  I tried to use a ton of starch, and I still had some stretching problems (you can see that in the edges).  The border points also don't line up perfectly, but I'm OK with it, I'm still learning and this was by far the biggest and most ambitious quilt I have done so far.  But the pattern was really clear and easy to follow, so those of you with more experience should have no trouble at all, and those of you still learning like me can take comfort in knowing the pattern walks you through everything and even if you don't sew it perfectly, you'll still end up with a great quilt top.

I love how the quilt top turned out and can't wait to finish it.  I'd love to try it again once I get a little better at bias edges and triangles.  Thanks Sara for including me in this great blog hop.  P.s. please excuse the poor pictures, I finished just in the nick of time, and so had to take pictures in bad light, while windy, with no one to help!  Ooops.  Next time I know to add in a little time in case (when) the photo shoot doesn't go well.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Scrappy Stash Quilt Along

So, I am thrilled to be a part of the blog hop kicking off the fabulous Jennifer at Ellison Lane Quilts' Scrappy Stash Quilt Along.  You don't want to miss out on this one.

Are you ready to sew? Good! The QAL kicks off on October 9 with giveaways, special sales, discounts and all the details to get you started. 

The many prizes offered to those of you that join our quilt-along are graciously donated by the following sponsors. 

Scrappy Stash QAL starts October 9. 
Scrappy Stash QAL ends November 13. 
Link up finished quilt November 13-15. 
Prizes drawn November 16. 

Blog Hop: 
The following fabulously talented ladies (can't believe I am among these amazing ladies!) have so kindly offered to share their scrap secrets with you as well as helping spread the word about the Scrappy Stash Quilt-Along. Be sure to stop by each day and check out their scrap storage! 

10/2: Imagine Gnats
10/4: Craft Buds
10:9: QAL kick-off day at Ellison Lane Quilts
10/10: Maureen Cracknell Handmade (QAYG tutorial!)


OK, so this is my "sneaky" scrap storage.  Why sneaky you ask?  Well, you see I don't have a sewing room, we live in a small three bedroom house in Berkeley where real estate aint cheap.  So I sew in the dining room.  And I started out with one all in one desk (with pull down top) and storage unit from Ikea.  Then, I started collecting (hoarding?) fabric, so I got another big storage unit.  With both of these, I consulted my hubby (and made him put together the furniture!).

But, then my scrap storage was getting out of hand, and, also, being that I love rainbows and all my other fabric is hidden (well except the heaps and heaps of WIP's that are left on the dining room table making it impossible to have a sit down meal most of the time, whoops), I wanted something pretty to store my fabric scraps.  

And then I just happen to be at Target (ok, so that happens often).  And, being that it was late summer and "back to school" time, there were lots of storage stuff ON SALE!  Well, it was fate, so I bought three three drawer units ($36 total), stacked them on each other, placed the tower in the last remaining wall floor space in the dining room (albeit over the heating vent, may have to do something come winter!), and sorted my scraps!  Yay, I was a happy camper.

A few days later, my hubby said, "You're lucky you are cute and I love you, cause don't think I didn't notice that you snuck that in the dining room."  So, there you have it, my sneaky scrap storage.  And it works great, so easy to get to my scraps now.  So go sort your scraps and join this QAL!

Grab a button for your blog, check out the blogs listed above and let's get this party started! 

Scrappy Stash Quilt-Along at Ellison Lane Quilts
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