Friday, March 21, 2014

She's Back!...And What I'm Working On

It's been 10 days since I had my sewing machine. Torture? Yes. I just didn't feel like the same me and I could only cut out so much fabric or procrastinate on those easily avoidable things to do. The process of getting my machine cleaned certainly did not come without a little drama. To make a long story short, I picked up my machine only to find out they never cleaned it!! Ahh!! What? How does this happen? Well, apparently between the new computer system and the new-to-the-system employee, my machine was listed as complete from the day I brought it in.
After 10 days, I brought it home to find this...Ah!
Thankfully, the owner called me to apologize and offered to clean it right away. Three hours later I had a cleaned machine.
Much better!!

I couldn't get sewing fast enough. After making dinner, I descended to my sewing room to start piecing the fabric for one of the several projects I had cut out while I was without my machine.
Most of what I'll be working on in the next few weeks are custom ordered quilts. I'm going to be making two more Children at Play chevron quilts for a sweet and lovely customer of mine. It's a good day when I get to work with Sarah Jane fabrics.
And, I hope to start piecing together the triangles for the black and white quilt sometime soon as well.
It feels so good to be sewing again. I was a little lost without my machine. As for those easily avoidable tasks I hoped to accomplish in the meantime, let's just say I tried. They aren't call "easily avoidable" for no reason.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Black and White Triangle Quilt: Getting Started

I tried really hard to only work on easily avoidable tasks while my sewing machine is out for the next week or so getting cleaned, but then I wandered over to the piles of fabric I have waiting to become quilts. Oops! As I was combing through the piles...many piles, I came across this stash of black and white prints.
Black and white is definitely not my typical color (or lack there of) palette. It can be so sophisticated and glam, but besides clothing, I don't think I own one single black and white item. Maybe that means I'm not that sophisticated, ha, ha. I guess I just lean toward color.

Truth is, I probably would have never bought all these prints, but this quilt is being made for someone who loves black and I aim to please. After making  my daughter's quilt, I knew I wanted to make another triangle quilt and these black and white prints seemed to be the perfect candidates for doing so. However, because I am easing into this no color palette, I thought it would be fun and cool to add just a hint of blue. After cutting...a lot of cutting, I ended up with this huge pile of triangles. 618 to be exact.
What I like about this fabric selection is the wide variety of designs -- some are modern, some are traditional, some are just plain fun.
There really was no waiting on my part to start arranging these triangles. I haven't gotten more than a few rows laid out on the floor, but here is a sneak peak.
This girl (me), who loves color even if it is the softest shade, is REALLY digging this! And there goes my list of easily avoidable tasks to accomplish this week, because how can I stop working on this now?

Linked To:
Quilt Story for Fabric Tuesday
Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday

Monday, March 10, 2014

A Week Without Sewing

Say it isn't so. A week or more without sewing? At least not with my favorite Juki machine. Yep, I finally broke down and took her in for an annual cleaning. She was due back in December, but to think of not having her around the holidays is just pure craziness. I knew I couldn't put it off much longer. Well, I easily could have, but knew it was in her best interest to go in for a check up. I had just finished up  the Children at Play chevron quilts and didn't have my next quilt deadline for a little while so I figured now would be a good but painful time to part with her for a little while. So there my sewing station sits -- just my chair and the machine's extension table anxiously waiting to connect with Juki again.

This might sound like a silly post, but I feel a little empty and incomplete not having her here to use whenever I want. Ok, I think the real pain comes from the fact that now I have to force myself to accomplish other things that I've been avoiding -- paper work, house cleaning, and lots of organizing -- the latter of which I tend to enjoy. So, I'm going to try my best to not procrastinate on those easily avoidable tasks over the next week or so, but let's face it, I can always find a project to work on. In fact, I have already started cutting fabric for a quilt that I've been wanting to make for quite some time. And, I have plenty more fabric that can be cut into, but I want to avoid starting too many projects as well. I also have two other sewing machines so if I really get the itch I can pull one of them out, but since they don't compare to my Juki, I'm going to try really hard not to.

Was that enough drama for you on a Monday? Poor me, right?
So, are you diligent about taking your machine in for the recommended annual cleaning or have you been procrastinating? I guess it really depends on how often you use it.

I won't stray too far over the next week. I'll be back sooner rather than later to share with you my fabric cutting progress.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Children At Play Chevron Quilt

Prior to creating the Wee Wander Pinwheel Quilt, I had a similar design in mind for the fabrics I purchased from the Children at Play collection, also by Sarah Jane Studios. Problem is I never got around to actually making the quilt. The Children at Play fabric line also features a large border print, as many of Sarah Jane's collections do. This one showcases a whimsical scene of children playing -- hence the name of the collection. Similar to the Wee Wander quilt, I used half square triangles (HSTs) above the border print, but this time in a chevron pattern. I used four different gingham prints from the same line and an off white solid to create the HTSs.
I really love the soft colors and the sweet illustrations. This border print will forever be a classic.
For the backing, I used a blue and pink pinwheel print and for the binding a pink and white polka dot print, both from the Children at Play collection. I quilted it in a horizontal zig zag pattern to mimic the chevrons. The finished size is approximately 35" x 38".
I have TWO of these adorable quilts available for sale in my Etsy shop. The second one has a slightly different backing and binding print, but they are finished the same way. Both would be amazing gifts for a baby or toddler.

Here are the links:
Children at Play Quilt - Polka Dot Border
Children at Play Quilt - Chevron Border

Or just visit my shop here:
Freshly Handmade [the shop]

Linked To:
Quilt Story for Fabric Tuesday
Blossom Heart Quilts for Sew Cute Tuesday
I Have to Say... for Show and Tell Tuesday