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Triangle rows – done!

My triangle rows are pieced! I took time to take classes at the retreat and worked a little bit on making some more of the half-square triangles, so I can eventually get to my Geometric Slide quilt that right now only exists in fabric cuttings and this one block.

geometric slide with background

 

But, my main focus was the triangles. I have all 12 rows pieced; they are just stacked on top of each other, and I didn’t have sufficient motivation or energy to unpin the labels from each row to spread them all out. I think just seeing six rows is exciting enough!

The rows underneath are mostly mirror images of the rows on top of them except for where I started to improvise on rows 11 and 12 as I ran out of triangles in certain fabrics and except for where I would mess up and accidentally flip a pair of triangles the wrong way.

The quilt along calls for equilateral triangles, but there was a bit of an accident. My ruler isn’t a 60 degree ruler, but I didn’t know that until I had cut 200 + triangles. Chalk one up for the non-math major :-)  But, thankfully I made this discovery at the retreat, so other quilters quickly helped establish that I had used the wrong ruler and wasn’t crazy for not being able to follow Paula’s directions exactly. I pieced one row perfectly, stubbornly sewed through the next even though I knew I was losing all my points, picked that whole row apart when I came to my senses and evaluated what was happening, and then figured out again how to line the triangles up to preserve the points. After that,  I was back on track and don’t mind one bit that the triangles are not precisely equilateral.

I’m linking  to Paula’s triangle quilt along. Can we talk about it for a minute? One reason I love quilt alongs is because they showcase what is, for me at least, one of the truly magical dynamics of quilting. The fact that the 45 people currently linked up can all be working the same pattern but all have unique color palettes is so amazing to me.  And, as if that wasn’t enough, I noticed some quilters are even creating secondary designs in their triangle quilts. If you want some serious eye candy, pop over to check out the quilts at Marci Girl Designs and Moose Bay Muses. Mind blown! I’m serious. It’s two clicks. Go see the quilts now. Thank me later :-)

The Sassy Quilter
I’m also linking up to Fabric TuesdayQuilt Story and Sew Cute TuesdayBlossom Heart Quilts. Remember that quilting eye candy has no calories.
Also, remember if you haven’t entered my fabric and pattern giveaway, you still have time.

Sunday MOD stash – and giveaway

I spent a productive morning and afternoon at the quilt retreat piecing ALL my triangle rows. Yes, all 200 + triangles are in rows!

The retreat swag bag and giveaways meant it felt like quilting Christmas. The sponsors for the retreat were crazy generous, and Jessica Levitt, Andrew Joslyn, and Katie Blakesley  did a phenomenal job organizing the event. I’m still pinching myself to believe it happened in my backyard on my birthday weekend.

Ok, so here are the goodies. Above are some organic cottons from Daisy Janie. How cool is it that the designer and producer of the fabric was participating in the retreat?

Even though I left each night to come home, I could read my new magazines and feel like I was still at the retreat. A free issue of Quilty? Yes, please! Guys, this might have pushed me over the edge to become a subscriber. I need more patterns like I need a rotary cut, but I’ve got two issues of Quilty  now, and both have multiple quilts that I would love to make.

magazines

 

Forget what I just said about too many patterns, and take a look at the piles of them that I got.

Patterns

 

Thanks, Windham Fabrics, Empty Bobbin, Modern Quilt Relish, Jaybird Quilts, Straight Stitch Society, and Esch House Quilts. I have to wait to see what the dining room looks like after I move, but that Prairie pattern has the potential to be the quilted item that I add to the dining room in my quest to have something quilted in every room. (P.S. I love the Straight Stitch Society actually uses the word supercute on the website).

Color cardOrdering solids online could be easier now since In The Beginning fabrics provided a color card for the Modern Solids line that I’ve seen  popping up all over blog land.

bookOk, so this wasn’t a retreat snag, but my sister bought me Sunday Morning Quilts as a surprise addition to my birthday present of an ironing mat for under my machine, pins, and a hera marker. So many people commented on how much they liked my ironing mat. It did come in handy, so I didn’t have to keep bouncing out of my seat while piecing my triangle rows.

DSC_0566

 

I won some Soak nail polish. I snagged the blurry picture at the retreat, which was fortunate because Deogi chewed up the box and dumped my HSTs off the counter and onto the floor while Mark had me out at Carrabbas on Friday night for my birthday dinner. I guess Deogi was registering some sort of protest that he didn’t get to go.

 

books

 

Thanks to C&T Publishing and Martingale, I arrived this morning to find that I had won this stack of three books! I think this was for taking some time out the other night to sew some charity pillowcases for kids getting treatment for cancer. I was super excited about The Modern Applique workshop since it seems like such a great reference.

Blue fabric

 

Here’s some more fabric from Intrepid Thread and a ruler from Pink Chalk Fabrics. Hold on! The giveaway is coming :-) But…not yet.

Paint charm

 

I also got this charm pack of the Paint line from Windham. See the four that I spread out? Those are to make a sewing machine cover. What a fun way to memorialize my first quilt retreat. That paint chip fabric in the middle was on top of the charm pack, and I was so excited because when I was creating my mosaic the other night, I chose it at first but then had to toss it because it didn’t fit. My eye was definitely drawn to its whimsy.

And, here it is!Aurifil thread

My first ever Aurifil thread! At first, I didn’t see it in the swag bag and that made me sad because it seems like most everyone who goes to a quilt retreats gets some Aurifil. But, then, I saw it! I haven’t even busted it open yet. I’m so silly. I should have tried it right then and there.

Ok, so NOW we are to the giveaway. Welcome if you’re linking over from Sunday Stash or Missouri Mel.

You can’t have my Aurifil thread, but I will part with a magazine, a pattern, and some fabric. Check them out in the picture below. To enter, you don’t have to do anything to enter except for clicking the Rafflecopter button. If you’re a follower or become a follower, then you can click for bonus entries. You get one week. When I get back from the beach next weekend, I’ll choose a winner and put the goodies in the mail.

Follow on Bloglovin

 

giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Retreat Classes

I’m checking in from the retreat with the fabrics that I’m using in my classes. I’m halfway through the 4 classes that I plan to take over the weekend. The fabrics above are for the basic piecing class that I’ll take tomorrow. I know how to make HST and flying geese blocks, but flying geese are still my enemy, so I’m hoping that this class might make them fly a little straighter.

MOD paper piecing fabricHere are the fabrics for my paper piecing class. They might not seem exciting, but this is my first EVER attempt at paper piecing, so mark down the time. In 30 minutes, the class will start and my quilting toolbox will expand.

MOD curved piecingHere’s a blurry picture of my curved piecing fabrics. I’m thinking of adding some green but didn’t have the right solid in my stash. I took this class this morning. Mind BLOWN! Curved piecing is so. much. fun. Now I know how to break up projects that require a lot of precise piecing.

And, the first six rows of my triangle quilt are laid out. There was a minor crisis when I discovered that my triangles were not equilateral, but a kind quilter here got me on track. I’m NOT recutting 200+ triangles, so I think the new plan will work just great.

Tomorrow if I don’t flop over incapable of doing anything, I’ll post the goodies from the retreat swag bag and the giveaway that I won.

Gotta get ready for class!

 

 

Triangles Cut

My triangles are ready. I rolled into the quilt retreat about an hour later than I wanted to, but I’m still making good progress. I dove into my triangles for about an hour last night to avoid dragging my 3 yard cuts of fabric to the retreat, but I’ve spent the afternoon knocking out the cutting of these triangles; I have 242 instead of the required 204, so I might take the lightest gray up in the left corner of the picture out of the mix. I feel iffy about it.

black and white trianglesHere’s the black and white text picture to make sure nothing is sticking out like a sore thumb. I don’t think I like the light gray here either. But, no worries. I’ll still have triangles galore. I’m looking forward to getting started with piecing them tomorrow. Well, I think I’m exciting. I’m looking at those bias edges, but I have starch. This will work. I’m so optimistic that I’m already thinking the leftover triangles might be great candidates for some throw pillows for the room.

This triangle quilt is also going to be my April Lovely Year of Finishes goal. I want to keep up with this quilt along, so even though it’s going to probably be tough to try to squeeze in the quilting, I’m going to make the goal getting it quilted and bound by the end of April.

The Sassy Quilter

Birthday countdown!

Tonight will be a short post, and I don’t have any exciting pictures to share, but I’m really excited for tomorrow because it’s my birthday. Ordinarily, I don’t get all that excited for my birthday, but if you’ve been reading the blog for several months, you’ll remember that I bought myself a birthday present way back in November. A modern quilting retreat starts tomorrow! And, I’m going to be there! I might even use more exclamation marks just because!!! I’ve had to furiously guard these days on my work calendar because it seems like after I went ahead to decide to take rare days off during the semester, everyone wanted to put something on the days, but except for one lunch meeting, I managed to pull it off.

I don’t even have a plan set in stone yet for what to work on. The nice thing is the retreat is so local  that I get to come home and sleep in my own bed every night. I even get to take a little time away from the retreat so that Mark can take me to an undisclosed restaurant for a birthday dinner on Friday night. So, it’s pretty much the best of all worlds. No stressing about forgetting stuff when I pack; no feeling bad about Deogi missing me too much; no giving up my traditional Friday night date night string that has remained unbroken since January (and we passed 100 emails back and forth to each other right in time for my birthday too).

I do know that I’ll be taking four short workshops at the retreat. I’m taking one in basic piecing. Maybe this will help me stop making wonky flying geese. The other three are ventures out into new territory. I’m taking one on curved piecing, one on foundation paper piecing, and one on free motion quilting. The FMQ makes me the most nervous, so I might even watch a few of the lessons in the Craftsy class that I bought recently and do a little practicing on my own. Here’s the Pinterest board that our instructor sent out for the curved piecing workshop to give us an idea of how our projects might look. How exciting.

I’ll report back with some photos. Hopefully by tomorrow night I’ll have a stack of triangles to show off for the Triangle Quilt along :-)  This is my first quilting retreat; swag bag here I come :-)

Sunday Stash and TLP March Update

You’ve heard me rave about the local PA Fabric Outlet before. They carry tons of $5 a yard calicoes from Makower, Andover, and Free Spirit along with other brands. And, often I get a 50% off coupon for the sale calico rack, which brings the fabric down to $2.50 a yard! Thank goodness I’m confined to the sale rack and the coupon doesn’t apply to the entire store. That would be very, very bad. The store has a rule that if you don’t turn in your coupon, you get removed from the mailing list. Brilliant marketing because I in no way want to get cut from the mailing list. So, I trekked out there last week even though it felt like the coupons lately have been arriving fast and furious.

Those spools jumped right out at me. I’ve been drooling over them for some time in the regular price rack, so when they dropped to $2.50, I snagged what was left on the bolt. The dress form fabric  I did buy at the $5 price. I love the color, and I’m stocking up for summer sewing when I want to branch out into projects like zippered pouches and needle cases and other small goodies. These will make the cutest little sewing accessories.

pantone quilt with cabin

 

Of course, I posted my Pantone quilt very recently. I’m linking it today to The Library Project – March Update because I pieced it using the In the Neighborhood pattern that was one of my goal projects for the year.

pantone backing

 

I found some backing for it in the $2.50 bolts. I don’t think the 3 yards that were left are quite enough, but I had some fabric left from piecing the top, so I should be set with a little piecing. Admittedly, the color is not spot on, but I think it’s close enough.

2.50 fabrics

 

And, here are some of the other $2.50 fabrics I snagged this time and the last that I was able to go. The Denyse Schmidt fabric on the top of the pile is going to help fix the contrast problems that I’m having with my Gimme Diamonds quilt, which is another library project for the year. The dots on the bottom are another possible backing find since I snagged several yards and think they would look great on the back of a modern quilt. The cherries might become more aprons for my Etsy shop or something else fun for the kitchen since that would be part of the summer goal to branch out. And, that blue fabric with the zig zags will most likely find its way into a sailboat quilt since I’ve had a hankering to make one for awhile.

Linking up to Sunday Stash at Molli Sparkles.

Lancaster AQS Show

I totally failed to post about all my adventures at the Lancaster AQS show right after they happened, so I figured tonight was a good night to catch up on that and to share some eye candy. The AQS show was only the second quilt show that I’ve ever attended, and it was funny how differently I approached this one. Last year, I was in awe of the projects; it was a good thing that the organizers set the ropes to keep me pretty far from the quilts, or I might have drooled on them. This year, I was still amazed by what people accomplished, but as I look at my pictures I have on my camera, I realize that I took some of them for personal inspiration; rather than saying, “I could never do that” and simply gawking, I found myself saying, “Hm…I’d like to attempt a simplified version of this or that.”

So, without further ado, I’ll share some pictures. The first one I actually went to Tim Latimer’s blog and pulled from his post about his “321 Quilt” because I must have shook my camera and only got a blurry picture of the quilt when it was hanging at the quilt show.

Photo Credit: Tim Latimer – 321 Quilt – Timquilts.com

This is a hand-stitched, whole cloth quilt. I’ve admired white on white quilts for awhile, but I like this colored thread/cream fabric combination as something different. I did get to snag a close up that shows how cool the hand stitching looks.

321 Quilt - Tim Latimer

Between seeing this and seeing the baby quilt that Sherry over at Young House Love stitched up, I want to try a mini (simplified) project with this hand quilting. In April, I’ll be driving back from South Carolina with my parents and Mark after a family wedding, so I want to get a top for a table runner marked up and sandwiched to give myself something to do on the long drive. Tim Latimer posted a series of in-process posts for the 321 quilt, and I was excited to find them tonight. Have I ever said how much I love the gracious quilting community? Probably, but it’s worth saying again. 

SLeighin down memory lane - Anne ZickHere’s “Sleighin’ Down Memory Lane” by Anne Zick.

Sleighin Anne Zick close-up

And, here’s a close up. This quilt has more of a traditional, country feel than what I make and I’d never in the foreseeable future make that many flying geese blocks since they are one of my personal least favorite quilty things to make, which is a shame because so many cool quilts use them. However, I think the embroidered (?) scenes are fun. I like red work quilts, and this feels like a take on them. And, if I found the right scene and brainstormed a bit to figure out a more contemporary setting for it, I think this could be fun project. I like the idea of having something to work on while my Monday night dinner girls are knitting and I’m looking on jealously wishing I could be doing something. At the same time, I like that I could still mostly machine piece the top from there.

With my luck Jaime BoehmIn “With My Luck” by Jaime Boehm, the black diamonds between the circles are the curtain showing through not the quilt, which is why I took a moment to look at this one. It was cool to see an alternate design.

with my luck close-up

 

I’m not sure how this quilt was constructed to get that overlap of the circles, and I suspect it might take too much patience for me, so this might be more in the wow category than the inspiration category, but I liked the idea of a quilt that isn’t one solid piece.

DSC_0462

 

The quilting and the ombre color selection are both gorgeous in “Playing with Color” by Sandy Snow, but my favorite part of the quilt was the drop shadow gray applique. I think it adds a nice dimension to an appliqued quilt using geometric shapes.

And, finally…

DSC_0460

“Waiting for the Rain” by Margery Goodall is again probably more in the wow than the inspiration category. You have to see a close up to fully appreciate it.

DSC_0461

 

This is one of the quilts that I helped to hang on my volunteer day, so I got to see it up close in person. Those colored lines are probably about an eighth of an inch! Besides the sheer mind-boggling amount of patience that I know went into this quilt, I was drawn to it as an inspiration piece because I started thinking about how maybe I could experiment with quilting where the finished project doesn’t look so much like a quilt. It looks more like a rich tapestry.

Oh, and don’t you hate it when you’ve finally convinced yourself that if a scrap is less than 2 x 2 inches square you can throw it out and then you come across something like this? I definitely had that thought. So much for scrap bin management :-)

So, I still have some “wow” quilts (not that these weren’t, really) on my camera card, but these quilts most got me thinking about my own quilting and how I might stretch my skills. Of course, on a more immediate note, I’m going to do some skill stretching with the triangle quilt along.

How about you? Have you been inspired by anything lately that is causing you to stretch your skills or to make a project different from what you’ve made before?

 

A little fabric mosaic therapy

Whew! Today was better, but this week at work was rough. How rough? Yesterday when I was locked in my office in dim lights, I had a sudden intense craving for a chili dog. What? Weird.

I left work and ordered a chili dog with nacho cheese and…wait for it…a strip of bacon. Double what?!? I was only a few hours away from needing someone to step in to save me from my own poor choices. I think my sanity was slipping.

Given those circumstances, it was a great idea to end the day virtual fabric shopping and just relaxing. Rachel at Stitched in Color is hosting a fabric mosaic contest. The theme is soft ethereal pastels, an even better addition to the relaxation idea. So, here are the two mosaics that I came up with using fabrics from Lark Cottons.

mosaiccbdd1e170f4d8ddf8dadf6010bce5598697c65c3 (1)

 

Soft Stroll is what I’m naming my first mosaic because I let it be inspired by nature. I think the deeper blue road lay out because it anchors the ideas of walking. Mark, my boyfriend, will probably be amused to see two rain-oriented fabrics on here because he and I are very different in one regard. I do not like to walk in the rain NOT.AT.ALL. And he loves rain. Maybe I should have tossed some little umbrellas into the mix.

mosaica69b1f677c1730063b51827cafbc43ea5170ec2c (1)

 

The next grouping is Cotton (Candy) Joy because I was aiming for the colors of cotton candy and the rule was that there had to be a little whimsy to the fabrics that went into this group. I don’t even like chickens in real life, but that chick fabric is killing me!

Triangle Quilt Along Fabrics

Paula over at The Sassy Quilter has been one of the bloggers who I have pretty much religiously kept up with since I started bouncing around the quilt blogging world. It might be hard for any one else to even get me to attempt to join a quilt along during the final weeks of a semester. But, I just need to remember that carving out some quilting time here and there in the final weeks is like carving out sanity time.

So, what is Paula doing? She’s leading a triangle quilt along;  I’ve been intrigued by them for some time, but I probably wouldn’t be brave enough to attempt one if I wasn’t getting this helpful push. It’s pretty much going to be an epic quilt along. Sign-ups don’t end until tomorrow night (hint-hint, wink-wink), and there are already 82 fabric selection posts linked up! Go, Paula!

The Sassy Quilter
Sales are a little slow (read: non-existent) over at my Etsy shop, so I decided to stay motivated, I do need to be mixing in some quilting projects that I’m going to keep. By the time all is said and done, I want to eventually put something quilted into each room of the house — something that fits, something that I love. Sometimes it’s hard to tell if  I’m going to love, love, love a quilt until I start to piece it, but since making a red, black, and white quilt has been on my wish list for awhile, I’m going to try to make a quilt for one of the guest bedrooms.
guest bedroom with lamp
I try to keep this room geometric with clean lines, so I think a triangle quilt is perfect. I did add some gray to the mix because I didn’t want a ton of sharply contrasting white.
triangle stack long
I’ve been stashing away black and white fabrics here and there, but I thought I might have to go fabric shopping for this quilt along. Nope! Behold, a stash raid has yielded enough for the front, backing, and binding of the quilt. Yay!
Ah…looking at the wall in the background makes me happy. My sister is a master faux painter :-)
triangle inspire
Ok, time to get inspired and get this quilt along started. Fortunately, Paula will release a new step right in the middle of my quilting retreat (c’mon first weekend of April), so I should be able to at least get through the first phases of the quilt during the retreat.

Pantone Quilt Entry

My Pantone quilt is done. You might remember the Sunday stash where I showed off the beautiful fabrics. Then, I slid in some golden/mustard touches and some teals, and I was on my way. I used Melissa Corry’s In Your Neighborhood pattern. And, I loved making this pattern! It was so much fun to see the blocks take shape. It was actually a little addicting. I wound up staying up until 3:30 Tuesday morning to get this quilt finished, and I found myself saying, “Well, I’ll just get this little bit of sashing on.” Then, I’d say, “Well, I’ll just sew these couple blocks together.” Then, I got far enough along that it just made sense to go to bed knowing the top was finished, ironed, and ready to photograph.

Pantone picnic styleHere’s what it would look like as a wrinkled picnic blanket. Poor quilt had to sit in the car for 2 days because Wednesday wound up being rainy :-(

Pantone close-up | One English TeacherHere’s a close up of the fabrics – albeit a little blurry. I had to be fast with the shutter release because it wasn’t raining today, but it was windy.

Pantone gross bugHere’s the bug or the gross shell of a bug that was dangling from the tree branch as I hung the quilt. I not so affectionately nicknamed it Satan’s minion and decided that I would most definitively have a panic attack if it touched me.

Pantone sun  | One English TeacherLet’s go back to looking the quilt, shall we?

I chose to make the baby size – 52×52 inch — quilt, which means there is plenty of room on it to play and that it also could make a small lap quilt.

I’m entering this in the quilt top category of the 2014 Pantone Quilt Challenge, and I highly recommend stopping by there because there are some amazing quilts featured. It’ll be like a little dose of bright, happy spring for your day.

2014 Pantone Quilt Challenge