Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Around the Wold Blog Up: Quarter Mile Quilts

Hello all! I've been tagged by Stephanie over at Quarter Incher to participate in the Around the World Blog Hop. 

Welcome to Quarter Mile Quilts where my mantra is: Enjoy and Inspire.  I aim to enjoy the quilting experience and if I can, inspire others to do the same.  I knew when I started this blog that I did not want to have any expectations of blog fame, or writing my own patterns; I simply wanted to enjoy the experience. (Other people enjoy the experience by writing patterns or becoming a blog/instagram/social media sensation and that's wonderful!)

So here I am in all of my red-headed glory.  Quarter Mile Quilts is a compilation of my love of running and quilting.  I ran the 400 meters, or what is also know as the quarter mile.  Someday I plan to figure out if/when I actually make a quarter of a mile of quilts in length.  I'm also a recovering "blue" color addict.  You can read more about me on my "About Me" tab. 

Like so many people, I suffer from Work in Progress Attention Deficit Disorder, or WIP ADD.  I have several projects ongoing simply because I love fabric and the patchwork process. 

Herringbone Quilt - AKA My Technicolor Quilt

Right now I'm working on a scrappy Herringbone quilt using Stitched in Color's tutorial.  I feel in love with this block when I first saw it on Bijou Lovely's blog a few years back.  I started cutting my scraps into 2" x 11" strips and slowly (over two years) I cut the 560 strips for the 20 blocks. The strips all of have meaning to me as they include pieces of my favorite fabric, past quilts, and even some of my lower quality fabrics that I bought when I first got into quilting (leave no fabric behind!). I have 10/20 blocks done and I am committed to finish the blocks before I let myself get carried away with another project.

Green HST Quilt

In between sewing blocks for the Herringbone quilt, I've been trimming my green half square triangles (HST).  Once the herringbone quilt top is done, I'll start placing them on my design board to simmer until I have the right layout.  I refer to my design wall process as simmering.  My quilt layouts are often like a fine marinara sauce, only getting better as it simmers.

Embracing 30 Quilt

Recently I turned 30 years old and while I'm generally good with turning 30, it's a milestone that I had trouble embracing.  So I copied Adrianne from @adrianneonthewindyside (instagram) who is doing her own 30 year quilt.  Check out her hashtag #year30quilt to see all of here beautiful blocks.

My blocks will all be 5" square, but otherwise I'm not trying to keep a consistent color palette or saying I can only use my scraps.  I'm going to make what I feel like making.  I plan to do a block a day so that I'll end up with roughly 300 blocks before I start putting a quilt top together.  I'll be posting the blocks in groups of four on my instagram account (@quartermilequilts) using the hashtag #embracing30quilt. 20/300+ done so far!

Norway QAL

I'm also signed up to participate in the Norway Quilt Along  (pattern from Thimble Blossoms) hosted my Sarah Schraw on instagram.  I have my fabric pulled, but I am waiting to start the quilt until after I finish my Herringbone quilt.  It's my incentive and so far it's working!

Well, that's me and my current projects.  A big thanks to Stephanie at Quarter Incher for tagging me.  I'd like to now tag Shannon of Little Luvins to participate next.  Go check her out!  She's one of the sweetest people I know and had the privilege of meeting and making friends with her at Sewing Summit in 2013.

Have a wonderful week!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Modern Miss: A Finished Quilt!

Do you ever worry so much about the quilting design that it freezes your creativity module?  Yep, this happened to me and truth be told, I'm not happy with the design I chose.  I think it's too much and does not compliment the quilt at all.  A lesson learned?  Yes.  Did I want to learn it on this quilt?  No.

Here's the pretty "before" picture:

Here's the quilting "after" picture:

At least it's still pretty, right?

I think a circular quilting design would have been better.  The angles were just "too much" for this quilt top.

The quilting design is called Square dance and I picked a gray "dolphin" color for the thread.

A big thanks to the husband for being my prop master.

Monday, January 5, 2015

For the Love of Jane: A Swap Follow-Up

In my spare time, I enjoy devouring reading a good book.  And so, it seems natural that I would combine my love of reading with my love of quilting.  When a Jane Austen themed swap was organized on Instagram I jumped at the chance.

I've participated in other swaps before, but I was still a bit nervous to join.  Quilting/craft swaps can be addicting and also full of some risk.  You're assigned a partner, usually it's a blind swap and you make a small craft (mini quilt, embroidery, zippered pouc) and send it to your partner along with some goodies.  Some people go all out with their packages, while others forget to participate all together.  Others are really thoughtful with the extras they send and others, well not so much.  If you're interested in learning more about swaps, Karri of Berries has written some fabulous blog posts on the subject.  Here's her website: http://www.karriofberries.com/

I was given some of the following information on my partner: loves modern quilting, but wanted something inspired by the garden, Emma is her favorite Jane Austen novel, and she provided a Jane Austen themed pinterest board for inspiration.
Here's what I made for my partner:

I embroidered my partner's favorite quote and surrounded it with some appliqued flowers.  I also made a small mini quilt featuring an arrow to allude to her favorite Jane Austen novel/movie Emma.  Extras included lip balm, a few fat quarters of fabric, lace trimmings, and two Christmas ornaments I made out of felt and linen. (The deadline for shipping was December 1st).  Only later did I realize that I did not include any food/candy goodies as I had intended to (bummer!).

And here's what I received:

A very lovely mini featuring silhouettes of Darcy and Elizabeth. It was a very nice package with a lot of goodies (both delicious and fun).  Jane Austen magnetic poetry!  My only small disappointment was that the package lacked a bit of thoughtfulness, although full of Jane Austen themed items, nothing regarding my favorite book, Emma or favorite quote.

All in all, I enjoyed the process and would highly recommend joining a swap in your future.  Be careful, they can be addicting!  I'm currently signed up for one swap, but am keeping my eyes open for others in the future.  You can find them on Instagram popping up every once in a while.