Snow day, January 2015 Edition

Oh, Iowa Weather. You are so ridiculous.2015-01-06 21.59.48

We’ve been on winter break since December 24th, scheduled to go back to school today, and…it snowed last night. And is going to be bitterly cold tomorrow, so…a two day extension on the winter break. Again. I know I posted yesterday about planning a red and white quilt, but I decided not to let myself go off on any wild tangents with new projects. I have plenty in progress, and after spending some time on a knitting project:

IMG_2759-0.JPGI spent some time working on an existing applique project. And in between bouts of working on the applique (of the border pieces, the body of the quilt is done, and HAS been done for some time), I worked on cleaning up my studio.

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Evidence of which can be seen in the laundry baskets in the photo, but no other pictures of my progress, yet. I took a bunch of before pictures, and I am not going to show my shame until I can also post after pictures. The really annoying thing is that I actually made a ton of progress today, and it didn’t take nearly as long as I suspected it would. Why do I have to keep learning that lesson? I’m generally fairly clever, but sometimes I can be awfully stupid.

With another day off tomorrow, I guess I’ll have lots more time to work on both the clean up and the applique. With any luck, the applique will actually get finished tomorrow! I’ve only been working on this quilt since January 2010. I have others that have been marinating even longer. Maybe by the time I finish them, they’ll be back in style again.

Planning a red and white quilt

It’s no secret that Red is my favorite color. Last year, I was shocked to realize that I have only ever made me ONE red and white quilt. I’ve quilted several, but only one that I made myself. Oh, sure, every other quilt I’ve made has red IN it, but it’s always with other colors — red and white and blue, or red and white and green or black or…you get the picture! Not to mention all of the in progress quilts that I have with varying amounts of red and other colors.

Or, as I look through some pictures looking for other things, some other stuff I haven’t even ever posted about:

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Last winter, I decided I wanted to make something that was all red and white, but deciding to do it was about as far as I got. It makes perfect sense, then, that I’ve spent the last little while contemplating ideas. And Pinning said ideas.

Because, why not.

Follow Suzanne Earley’s board Quilts on Pinterest.

The tricky part is trying to decide between a quilt that would be super easy to piece, thus providing a canvas for fancy quilting….or do I want to get involved in piecing a Feathered Star quilt of my own, like the Radiant Star I made several years ago as a commissioned quilt….

Radiant Star, full quilt

but red….and will I be able to resist the temptation to throw in some other colors…and should it be scrappy reds and whites, or just two fabrics?

So many choices and ideas! Not enough time!

Have any of you made red and white quilts that you really love? Or have a picture or link to share, to add to my inspiration files? Let me know in the comments!

Neutrals Sampler Quilt — Finished!

I started working on this beautiful sampler LAST Christmas Break, but life got away from me. Luckily, my customer is VERY patient, but I had put this off long enough.

She has made many samplers (she trades blocks with several other quilters), and I always try to do something a little different. My idea with this one was to break out of the “block” and split the space up a little differently. I spent some time on the Green Fairy Quilts website looking for inspiration.

The quilt is a little hard to photograph with my current lighting conditions (i.e. the light is TERRIBLE, thanks for nothing Iowa winter…), but hopefully you can tell that I basically ignored the blocks themselves, creating my own “blocks” on a diagonal, adding in my own divisions. I’m particularly proud of the border design!

The main blocks were done continuously. The alternating blocks, with the extra “border” had some extra starts and stops. The thread is Superior Threads So Fine in the top and Bottom Line in the bobbin. No pics of the back, they don’t really show anything you can’t tell from the pictures I’ve shared here.

It’s all freehand (well, with ruler for the straight lines.) I’ve pulled out a few photos to highlight, but then have a slideshow with several more below.

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Here’s the slideshow with the rest of the pictures. You can scroll through, but if you click on any of the images, it’ll take you to the picture’s Flickr page, and you can view it full sized.

Wanting to start all of the things, plus a quilting class announcement

I’ve been quilting this week. It’s a great quilt, but the design I chose is very detailed and it’s taking a long time. Which gives me lots of time to think. Which is scary. I shouldn’t be allowed so much time to think.

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It’s very tempting, here on winter break, to Start All of the Things. You know the tune: I’m going to clean out my studio, I’m going to start a dozen quilts, half a dozen knitting projects, plus I’m going to add all of these other new habits.

And about 3 days after I start back to work, I’ll remember why I don’t Do All of The Things during the school year anymore: my day job is a huge energy hog. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great job (most of the time), but for an Introvert to spend her day with Teenagers and Other Adults all day long…woof.

I did have one brainstorm today that I really do think is a good idea, and I started working on it, and that’s where the announcement comes in. I’m putting all of my old Feather Boot Camp class stuff together into some posts here on my website. I even made a banner:

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Making a banner makes it real, right?

I was going to wait until I had it all ready to go, but I may go ahead and release the first class later tonight, but definitely tomorrow morning.

I know that I’m out of the quilting loop, and there are lots of other feather classes and books and whatever out there. I put all of this work in to the videos and handouts though, and even if they help just one more quilter,  it’s worth the effort to get it off my hard drive and out in to the world.

But first I have to go quilt some more. I’ll try not to do any more brainstorming while I’m at it.

(edited at 7:20p: the first lesson is posted. http://wp.me/PqREJ-1Lu)