Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Aurifil Thread and Heart Leaves

Last week, I mentioned in my post for Leah Day's QAL Wednesdays, an issue I was having with Aurifil thread breaking when I free motion quilted. I know that Aurifil is a high quality cotton thread and should work fabulously with FMQ. When I switched to Isacord thread (polyester), I didn't have any problems (although I did have to lower my thread tension from 4.0 to 1.0). I got a great response from people offering several different solutions. To my great surprise, Alex Veronelli from Aurifil actually responded to my blog (he even posted my problem on their facebook page, talk about transparency!!!). I have been in quality management for 25 years and even a senior Baldrige examiner (Malcolm Baldrige is the highest quality award given in the U.S.), and what separates a good company from a great company is, in my opinion, customer service. Aurifil is a GREAT company! I emailed Alex back and asked for some ideas. He was wonderful and emailed back several possible solutions. Leah Day was also wonderful in offering a solution to use a spool stand. I tried the spool stand first and it worked like a charm. Not only did the Aurifil thread work great, but I didn't have to lower my tension with either the Aurifil or Isacord thread. Isn't the blogisphere wonderful!!!

Sew on with heart leaves! SewCalGal is having a FMQ challenge and this month was heart leaves. I did practice this pattern several times.
First practice  
Stitched into my FMQ sampler quilt

Close up of the stitching
Finally in my extra quilt block for Quokka Quilts QAYGFMQQAL using Aurifil thread!!! 

So a big THANK YOU to everyone who offered solutions!

Today I'm linking up with SewCalGal and A Quilt Story - Fabric Tuesday. I hope everyone is having a great day!

Color Me Quilty!


Monday, January 30, 2012

Whipping Up a Baby Quilt!

This week's homework from Leah Day's Quilt Along is to stitch following a line. In the video she showed a "cheater" quilt (a quilt printed on fabric), so I thought about a panel that I have had for some time. So this weekend, I whipped up this cute little baby quilt to use to practice stitching on the line.
Center panel and for corner squares added into the plaid border

I love the bright colors!

The quilt top is done, and it's all sandwiched and basted, ready to quilt! Sew now, I have to "shut up and go quilt"!

Today I'm linking up with Manic Monday and Sew Modern Monday!

Sew Happy Geek

{Sew} Modern Monday at Canoe Ridge Creations

Color Me Quilty!


Saturday, January 28, 2012

Quick Curve Meets Nine Patch: Urban Nine Patch

Quick Curve Ruler from Sew Kind of Wonderful
This past Thursday I pulled out my new Quick Curve Ruler that I got for Christmas and started playing with the curves.

That same day, Jenny from Sew Kind of Wonderful (inventor of the ruler) came up with this really cool block.
Picture from Sew Kind of Wonderful (Urban Nine Patch)
Jenny is starting a Quilt Along next Thursday. I already have a million projects started, but how in the world can I say no??? I am going to kill two birds with one stone though, I'm going to use this as my FLMQG (Finger Lakes Modern Quilt Guild) solids challenge quilt,which IS on my Big Fat Winter Stitching List!

Color Me Crazy Quilty!


Friday, January 27, 2012

Fugly Fabric {Giveaway} Sneak Peak!

Charm About You

Lucy at Charm About You has the wonderful idea of a Fugly Fabric giveaway! Since I inherited so much fabric from my mom, I can't help but want to join in. The giveaway is Tuesday February 7th (which is coming up faster than you can imagine). Here's some of the fabric I'm thinking about giving away.
It may not be designer fabric, but it is good quality fabric.

This is just a possible fabric, I have lots more to choose from.
Now the question for you all, would you rather have larger pieces (a yard) of a few fabrics, or smaller pieces (half yard) of more fabrics? Second question, is the fabric above too fugly to giveaway?

Color Me Quilty!


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Try New Things (TNT) Thursday: Quick Curve Ruler Experiment

Quilt and quilting by Jenny of Sew Kind of Wonderful
Ever since I saw this quilt, I knew I wanted to make a similar one. Jenny from Sew Kind of Wonderful not only created this quilt, but also designed the Quick Curve Ruler to make it. She started selling the rulers right before Christmas and my brother and SIL were kind enough to give it to me as my Christmas present. So today is high time I take it for a spin!

The Quick Curve Ruler by Sew Kind of Wonderful

Rotary cutter fits nicely in the curve.

The ruler has markings to keep things lined up

You can just flip the ruler to cut the other direction.

Pieces cut ready to sew.
There should be a 1/4" point at the top (and bottom)
No pins. I was shocked how easy this went together

1/4" point at the bottom of the seam

OOPS! A little operator error. Obviously I didn't put right sides together!
Press towards the curve.

Voila! Really cool block!    

Oh yes, I'm going to be doing some more playing around with this ruler! I love it! Check out some of Jenny's fabulous tutorials and creations with this ruler at Sew Kind of Wonderful!

I'm linking up with the wonderful Melissa at Happy Quilting for Try New Things (TNT) Thursday.

Color Me Quilty!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

WIP Wednesday: FMQ Scale

I had lots and lots of fun this week because I got to do lots of FMQ! Who would have thought that years of doodling would have a purpose??!! Leah Day's homework this week was stitching different scales of stippling. This was a great exercise and harder than I thought it would be. I think this is going to a valuable skill to have in my bag o'stitches (sew to speak)!
Attempted 4 different scales (the last two kind of blend together)
Small scale



Extra large
 Things I learned this week: 1. I like quilting with Isacord thread better than Aurifil. With the cotton Aurifil, the thread broke constantly, even after lowering my tension. 2. Sitting at the right height while quilting, keeps you from getting a backache/sore neck and shoulders. 3. Having tools that help you, such as gloves and a supreme slider, make FMQ easier so you can focus on other aspects of your quilting 4. I really love FMQ (already knew that, but it was reconfirmed this week).

The only question I have for Leah this week is: When quilting with a good quality cotton such as Aurifil, is there a way to keep it from breaking? I always have to lower my tension considerable to FMQ. 4.0 is the default (I piece at this tension), to about 1.2 to FMQ with Isacord. The thread was new. Any suggestions, other than stick with Isacord?

First block quilted
Last block quilted
On to my WIP this week. I worked quite a bit on my Storybook quilt. I got all 20 blocks, sashed, sandwiched and quilted. Now I just need to square them up and join them together.

I also got the first four blocks for Quokka Quilts QAYGFMQQAL completed. 

So, my stats this week are:
In-process: (5)
Hip to be Square FMQ sampler (20 out of 30 blocks quilted)
Purple heart wall hanging ( needs borders, backing, quilting and binding)
Expanding Possibilities quilt (needs backing, quilting and binding)
Storybook quilt # 1 -  All blocks are quilted
Storybook quilt # 2 - All embroidery is done
Quokka Quilts QAYGFMQQAL quilt (First 4 blocks are quilted).

New projects in the cue to start: (4)
FLMQG solids challenge crib quilt (Not started)
New Wave quilt (not started)
Friend's baby quilt - fabric picked out!

Finished (0)

I'm linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday and The Free Motion Quilting Project for Quilt A Long Wednesday!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced


Color Me Quilty!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

My Big Fat Winter Stitching List - Mid-Winter Update!

This is the mid-winter check-in with FairyFace Design Winter Stitching List, to see how we are all doing and if I'm on track (or not)! This was a really ambitious list for me and I think I'm doing pretty well.

FairyFace Designs


1. Hip to be square (FMQ Sampler), finish quilting and bind - March - Update: Not done, but only 1/3 left to quilt

2. Cubic rhythm, quilt and bind - Christmas - HAHAHA.....Update: I really surprised myself and finished this for a Christmas Present for my brother and sister-in-law!

3. Mermaid pillows - Christmas Update: Not only did I get these two Mermaid pillows done, I also finished two more pillows for Christmas!

4. Purple heart wall hanging, border, embroider, back, quilt and bind - Christmas, if I don't finish Cubic Rhythm Update: Since I finished the Cubic Rhythm quilt, this wall hanging has been put on hold until June.

5. Table runner, bind - January Update: Finished this in time to use for Thanksgiving!

6. Christmas stockings - (4) for the grandkids, (5) more, if they are easy, for the adults - Christmas Update: I really went overboard here, I completed 17 stockings to give out at Thanksgiving!

7. Two iPad covers - Christmas Update: Finished them for Christmas presents

8. Two doggie mats - Christmas Update: Finished them for Christmas presents.

9. New wave quilt - quilt top done - March Update: Not even started!

10. Expanding possibilities, piece back, baste, quilt, bind - March Update: Nope, haven't touched it!

11. Potholders (several) - FMQ - Christmas Update: 6 potholders completed for Christmas presents along with 7 embroidered towels and 2 oven mitts.

12. FMQ Friday's at Fluffy Sheep Quilting - Update: I participated in FMQ Fridays until the end in December! Since then, I am participating in Leah Day's QAL Wednesdays, Quokka Quilts QAYGFMQQAL, and SewCalGal's Free Motion Quilt Challenge.

13. WIP Wednesday's at Freshly Pieced - Update: I have participated each week Lee has had it open.
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

14. Try New Things (TNT) Thursday's at Happy Quilting -Update: I have only missed 2 weeks.


15. FLMQG solids challenge crib quilt - April Update: Not even started!

16. Friend's baby quilt - March Update: Not even started!
17. Purple Ohio star quilts - April Update: I have not started doing anything with these blocks, but I have started using 6 other orphan blocks for two storybook twin sized quilts. This is a QAYG, all of the blocks for the first quilt are quilted.

I think I'm on track, still have lots to do. Having loads of fun with my winter stitching list!

Color Me Quilty!