Thursday, February 28, 2019

QuiltCon in the Music City

                     (this is post 1 from QuiltCon)

Last weekend I headed East to Nashville, picking up Momm from the airport as we headed for QuiltCon and a quilty weekend together!

We haven't been to QuiltCon since the first one in Austin. Nashville is a fun city and we had a good time packing in all we could see of quilts & vendors & new friends & mini quilt swaps.

We made buttons to trade this year based on our Instagram names: @bumblybzs & @RNquilter. Mine features a bumblebee that I stitch into my quilts, and Momm used one of her quilts in her design. This was such a fun way to chat with people as we wandered the hall, and to remember who we met & their social media at the end of the day.

Since Nashville is only a couple hours away, I brought quilts to put on our hotel beds for ambiance. :) 

We met a lot! of lovely people, Heather from Crimson Tate, Victoria Findlay Wolfe, Marianne Fons & Sue Reich at Quilts of Valor, the Aurifil team, Amy Milne at Quilt Alliance, @Shoppershaz, and many more quilters, enthusiasts & creative souls! Thanks to everyone for being so nice and lovely all weekend.

 Between raindrops we managed to squeeze in some exploring downtown, spotting some great murals & great gelato!

gelato break at the terrace firepits

We also made it out to the TN state museum to see their new quilt exhibit: Between the Layers: Art and Story in TN Quilts :which was cool. I mean, visiting other quilt museums is part of what I do. ;)

Star Variation quilts in the exhibit

Quilt by Lillian Beattie, made when she was 100 years old!

Momm was lucky & won one of the new Ruby Olfa cutters! And we both won some thread playing Aurifil Jenga.

We got off the wait list & into the Free Motion class with Christina Cameli @afewscraps on Saturday night. This was so much fun! 3 hours went really quick as we learned some excellent FMQ ideas and practiced creating showboats, clusters, layering, divide & conquer, and blends. I'm so looking forward to using these ideas in my own quilts!

I can also finally show the mini quilt I made for the #mqgminiswap as I swapped with my partner @sunchaserquilts during QuiltCon. 

We ran into each other the first day, and kept crossing paths until our designated swap time. So much fun to meet in person and now I can add this lively mini to my wall.

We're holding the quilts we received
Now it's time to follow the direction from our newest, comfy, quilty shirts (from Patchwork Threads) & MAKE QUILTS!

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Hanging Out Sloth Style

Sweet friend M asked me to make baby quilts for her soon-to-be twin nieces and of course I said yes! You know, readers, that I love to make baby quilts. 

She asked for sloths, because her sister loves them, and when I showed her this pattern by Elizabeth Hartman, M was all in. We talked colors (no pink, something soft) and then I went to my favorite fabric shop (Hancock's of Paducah) to hunt up some sloth-appropriate fabrics.
signature bee spotted!
I made one block for each quilt and extended the tree trunk taller to fill the space better.  Added background fabric to make the quilt size a bit larger too.

I've heard that these patterns can be time consuming to make, and while there are lots of little pieces for the faces, it stitched up really smoothly! I spent a night cutting allll the pieces for both quilts, and then took another day or so to piece the tops. So worth it!

I also mirror imaged one of them so they face in opposite directions, because twins- same, but different! That's why there are two different background colors. The backings are the same fabric - a wintry tree print with the absolute right colors - and I bound them in the opposite background fabric for an extra pop.

Snooze I
Snooze II

Quilting these was extra fun!  I free motioned the sloths fur-like spikes, wood grain in the trees and leaves in the background - all in coordinating Aurifil threads. Hoping M loves them, and that her sister and new nieces love them well!

Linking up with Studio Sew of Course for the 2018 Quarter 4 Finish A Long. Original Q4 post is here.

Monday, December 31, 2018


Capriccio::a lively piece of music, that is free in form::

I'm so happy to share this quilt with you readers as I just love how it turned out! I was inspired to try something new in my quilting this summer and wanted to experiment with some improv stitching. I was inspired by Sherri Lynn Wood's book & style in starting with the wedge shapes - then just let the fabrics direct the process from there!

Constructing bits of wedges here and there & rearranging them on the design wall took some time - so many possibilities and ways to try and put them in place.  

I was using fabric from my stash, and had limited amounts of some colors, which also helped determine size/shapes. 

The fun of improv is working within the limits of colors, or fabrics or quilt size!

Starting to piece segments together and play with the layout took time. I was guessing for a lot of the white background and kept adding bits, or ripping seams to add something else back into the mix before re-adding the background. Free cutting the curves and stitching those together was a fun challenge in parts!

Once the top was finished, I moved right into basting it, and then stalled out before jumping into quilting it. I stared at it for awhile until realizing that starting at it wouldn't get it quilted. Also, I was determined to finish this in time to enter into QuiltCon - nothing like a deadline to get you going - am I right?!

Okay, here's the deal - I love to free-motion quilt. It's fun to doodle designs and I'm a big fan of matching the right quilting to the design of the top. However, figuring out how to quilt a quilt can be tricky. 

For Capriccio, I had an idea of one design in one place - echo lines around the bottom right sliver - and so that's where I started. I don't always have a full plan in mind when I start stitching, but find that once I start, more ideas come to mind and it starts to flow. I used Aurifil threads in a variety of colors for the quilting blending & matching colors with a few pops.

I knew fairly early, that I didn't want the quilt to be square, so I rounded the left corner. Getting that curve was a bit unnerving, until I discovered the sweep of the curve I wanted matched perfectly to a hula hoop I had in the house! Wouldn't you know - the hula hoop was easy to use as a 'ruler' with the rotary cutter and made that curve a snap to trim.

Thankfully, I finished just in time to get some photos in the daylight and enter this one into QuiltCon, but it didn't make the cut. Having that deadline to aim for really got me fired up to finish this so I'm not complaining! Happy to have it completed, and to check it off my Finish A Long 2018 Quarter 4 list as well! My orignal Q4 list can be found here. Linking up at Studio Sew of Course.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Snoopy the Flying Ace

Sharing a recent finish with you today! A friend of mine, who loves Snoopy, pieced this charming quilt in anticipation for her first grandchild.  She asked me to quilt it for her so it'd be ready to snuggle when the baby arrived.

Don't you love baby quilts - they are such a happy thing to make and gift and I was extra happy to quilt this one.

I kept the quilting simple - adding some woodgrain texture to the doghouse, loopy clouds in the border and keeping the grass in keeping with the comic-style, as well as my trademark bee. The striped binding makes the perfect finishing touch! I found out this morning, they had a baby girl so I know there will be plenty of baby snuggles for my friend & her family! Yay!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Quarter 4 FAL List

Marci Girl Designs

Well it's certainly been a few months since my last Finish-a-Long link up. I'm back this Quarter to finish it up strong for the year.

Operation:snooze part I
 A secret project so I can't get too detailed, but I've got all the pieces cut & ready to sew.

Operation:snooze part II
 Also a secret project so I can't get too detailed, but I've got all the pieces cut & ready to sew.

Inspired by Sherri Lynn Wood's book on improv quilting and a desire to try something different!

I'm keeping it short & sweet this time around but excited to join back to the Finish-a-Long! Linking up at She Can Quilt for Quarter 4.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Berry Dusk : Mosaic Entry

Here's my second entry for the Mood Berry Mosaic Contest over at Stitched in Color! Again, fabrics are from as specified for the contest - so much fun to fabric play and curate a specific group of colors & prints. 

Night Blooms : Mosaic Entry

Hello friends - do you love playing with color & fabric combinations? Check out Stitched in Color's blog for her latest Mosaic Contest- Mood Berries. Choosing only 9 fabrics from a whole shop can be challenging, but here's my first entry.
May I present Night Blooms. 
These brought to mind gardens full of colorful blooms at twilight in the late summertime. Fabrics from Fabricworm online shop.