Saturday, April 12, 2014

Once Upon a Time BOM 2014

APRIL 2014
I just loved stitching up this months block :) Goldilocks and her three Bear friends! Look how sweet, 3 bowls of porridge!
And here is my sampler overall progress to date...until next month :) Happy sewing!

MARCH 2014
Here is my March block all cute and finished :) Three little pigs and one adorable big bad wolf.
this makes the first row of stitching done and I just think it is so adorable!
I am already thinking up ways to finish this piece once all the stitching is done. Traditionally cross-stitch pieces are framed and hung on the wall, and I may do that, but I am also thinking up something different :)


I am really getting to posting this really late but I have had this done for a little while :) promise!!
I just love that February was all about lovey dovey kissie stuff!!!


And here we go again...another block of the month :)  I just love them!

This time I am breaking from the traditional quilt block and working on a cute kawaii cross stitch. This pattern is designed by and available all year long at The Frosted Pumpkin.

And just like the traditional quilt block, this sampler has space for 12 months of stitching fun!

The theme for this sampler is Once Upon a Time and thus fairy tale stories and characters! How cute is that! I was not sure I wanted to do another BOM cross-stitch this year. I did the Woodland Sampler one from The Frosted Pumpkin for 2013 and while I liked it I wasn't sure I needed another stitchery around the house. Truth be told, I am running out of wall space to put them :)

But, I really got into Fairy Tales last year via television. I just couldn't get enough of them. Then when the email popped into my mailbox and when I saw that it was fairy tale inspired I knew I had to do it!

This month I stitched Snow White and two of her dwarves. They are so stinkin' cute! I really took my time and had fun! Nothing complicated about these patterns.

That is part of the appeal for me. I am not bogged down with the drudgery of tons of color changes and lots of blending threads and I can easily pace out the work by picking tiny goals. Like one day I stitched the top row of two dwarves and the clothes line. Next day was clothes on the line and the apples.

I did get off to a late start with this sampler. The pattern itself was not available (I get each months pattern pack emailed to me) until January 10th. Then, I had a hard time finding the fabric to stitch the design on. I finally found what I needed at a some what local cross stitch supply store. I am using an even weave linen in a sea-foam green color with strands of sparkle woven in.

Initially I wasn't quite sure about the green. The pattern creator used a brownish fabric that I could not find in my area and while it was available online I didn't have the $30 needed to special order so I went local and found green.

After completing January's stitching I am very happy with the results! The white on Snow Whites shirt does not really pop at you but it is still visible and not really blending in so all's good there!

Even with getting a late start I was able to call this months block done in the nick of time lol January 31st!

Today, the first of February, I was emailed February's chart. I took a quick peek and it has a frog on it! So I will sign off now and get that one printed off and ready to stitch up soon!

Happy Sewing!!
Melodee :)

Triangels Triangels everywhere!

The Sassy Quilter

I have decided that it is time to sew up a new quilt...I know I sew every day but that is sewing small bits that will fit into a larger bit, or a block a month stuff. This time from start to finish all at once is the plan.

I was nervous about this idea. I am not always so great at getting down the business on big jobs and getting them done in a timely manner. I do have quilts that have taken me 20 years to do!!!

I have decided to just jump in there and go for it! I also was not to easy about the idea of sewing a ton of bias stretchy edges into a quilt!! However, I was taken in by the possibility of how cute this could be!

The pattern is from The Sassy Quilter and the pattern is called The Triangle Quilt Along .

It is set up so that in about a month you could have a finished quilt. I did get off to a late start on this, being that I was undecided that I even wanted to try such an adventure. But once committed I am sort of keeping pace with the group. (In all honesty I am a wee bit behind and missing out on all the give-aways but I am totally ok with my pace).

Now that I am 9 rows in I am so glad I decided to sew this up!

Check out all my poka dot fun! I went shopping with the hubbie and littles and asked each of them to pick out four poka dot prints and as long as they adhered to that rule what ever they chose was going in! They listened and here is what they chose :)
The pattern calls for 12 rows but I think I will end up making mine longer or bigger...however you see it :) I have some 6 foot men in my house and it would not do to have a short quilt on the couch!!
I have used up all the heavily starched triangles I had cut so tomorrow I will be doing more starching and more cutting and more assembling.
And I shock myself with this but I actually for once it seems know how I want this one quilted! I plan on doing multiple circles. A small center with outer rings...not sure if there will be three per or what but I have it in my mind and we will see what comes of it when I get to the point where I am actually quilting it :) pictures to follow!
But up next I have committed myself to quilting my stash bee quilt! I almost have a hand quilting plan for that one lol... I am such a mess when it comes to the quilting part! Tops I can do...quilting it up...not so much!
Well gotta get back to the grind stone!
Happy Quilting,
Melodee :)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Classics Meet Modern 2014 BOM

April 2014

I was not so sure about this block at first. I knew the fabrics from the first pull, but how to arrange them I really had a hard time deciding.

First, I knew I did not want to do the obvious double Z more modern pattern.To me this looks like two sea horses kissing...ok not a bad thing but not something I really wanted to sew lol.

So I ended up here with a center pin wheel and and X border.
March 2014
Oh how I really don't like to sew the drunkards path! I just wish I could be one of those people who can drink and function!!! well, not really but man these blocks give me a super stress out!!! and they don't call it the "drunkards" path for nothing!
Can we all just scream bias cuts!!!! and trouble is this block needs the stretch to keep things neat so I can't use the finicky sewers helper can of super extra strength starch on them!
But, as you can see I was successful!!! yeah me :)
I just love the color selections in this one! I had this one swimming in my head as I was selecting the fabrics. I just new the center was going to be black...seems to be the "theme" on this quilt. but I also knew that I wanted to do a dark vs light for each of the outside blocks. I did lots of sorting and resorting and selecting and finally found the colors that suited my "vision".
And here it is in all it's glorious doneness!!!
FEBRUARY 2014 Amethyst Block
Busy busy busy! and I am loving it!
Here is my version of this months Classics Meet Modern Block of the Month.
Look at that!!!.... Y seams...ahhhhhhhh!!!!!! but it really wasn't all that bad, granted mine are not perfect but good enough for me to love :)
FYI... I don't know what my camera did with the white on this block but those 4 pink looking bits are in reality white (Kona snow) fabric?!?! I really need to get better lighting in my sewing room lol!
My goal/rule for this quilt is to try my hand at more modern looks. I haven't the faintest idea if I am really achieving this but hey, I love these two blocks that I've made for this quilt thus far!!!

January 2014 {Polar}Bear Paw Block
And here I go again... haha... another block of the month quilt. This one was intriguing to me because I have no idea what this quilt entails or what the finish will look like-- at all! I just decided to join this sew along because I have never and have always wanted to make a bear paw block! We shall see where this adventure takes me. For further information on this BOM check it out Classics Meet Modern 2014 BOM. offered by Sew at Home Mummy.
Now for the bad news...and I just figured this would be the case!!!
I recently bought just enough white Kona fabric to use in making the Vice Versa BOM that I have posted about before. I just knew at the time that I was in for trouble later if I didn't buy more...just in case. But like a dummy head I didn't give in to that just buy it feeling...UGH! 
Well, here we are at the just in case moment. After I decided to join this BOM I went to pull some white out to make this block. I debated on robbing Peter to pay Paul from the Vice Vera fabric stash but decided to just go to the white bucket and pull from what I had on hand. Unfortunately, all I had with any sort of quantity was a white that I used on my Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt as part of the backing. It is kinda thin and has a bit of a sheen to it.
Yesterday I cut out all the squares needed to sew the {Polar} Bear Paw block and today sat down and sewed up the block.
I am not happy with the turn out at all! and the main reason is my use of that shiny thin white fabric. I took a gamble and used what I had before purchasing more idea and this time it was a big fat rotten goose egg failure .
Back to the cutting board...sorry Peter but Paul will pay you back in a couple of days, I promise!

Here is to better sewing luck tomorrow...

BREAKING NEWS...update...I redid the block...I knew I would lol

In the end the need to feel happy about this block just overtook me. It isn't a very difficult block to do so I said, GO FOR IT!
 ***plus I have my machine back from the shop!!! super happy dance over here right now!*** it sews like it is bran new!!!
And here is my new and improved (in my mind any how) Polar Bear Paw Block :)
I used Kona white for the white and not the shiny thin stuff I used on the last block. Plus, I found a new print for the center. I thought this blue would be more pleasing to my eye than the other and I was right. I am now satisfied and can say the January block is done!
Happy sewing!
Melodee :)

Sugar Block Club BOM 2014

APRIL 2014
Here we go, another cool block!
I know I have bit off quilt a lot this year with all the BOM's and QAL's I'm in but I am having a blast!
This BOM is no exception! The BOM leader for this group, Amy Gibson, has also included a thing with our blocks called "Beyond the Block" where she gives us brain food as well as yummy treats to bake up!
This month the sweet treat was an apple cobbler and it was fantastic! The kids especially loved this one because we had it for "dinner" and it was served with ice cream! say what?!?!?! yeap! Ice cream WITH dinner lol!

MARCH 2014
It is that time again....more fun blocks being sewn up! This months block was a bit challenging...paper piecing!!! but it wasn't so bad (only the long point blocks were paper pieced) and I starched the heck out of them lol so they stayed where I wanted them!
In the end I am very happy with the way this block turned out! But funny thing is, my camera is not showing the colors correctly on this block. Specifically, the large points are reading royalish blue when in fact they are more of a teal to turquoise. But all laid out the three blocks for this BOM are so awesome together!

It is the first of the month and time for some new block finishes!!! But first, let's talk about my new hobby :)
This afternoon I spent the day with some great friends (who sadly are moving to Australia..but how great is that on second thought!!! but we sure will miss seeing them!) making valentine cards. It was great fun!! I have never actually made cards before, we usually just buy them (go Halmark lol!) but this has opened me up to a new idea of card giving! I really really loved the process. I did take me a few minutes (ok more like an hour) to get my sea legs but in the end I made a few great cards (IMHO). My husband and kids are going to love them I'm sure! My brain is swollen with ideas of cards to make for other events and holidays!
Now onto the actual point of this post lol Sugar Block Club block number 2...

I really like the fabric choices I made for this block...but my bias cuts got a bit wonky and I have some wrinkles in a few blocks that I tried to iron out but was unsuccessful.

I was able to sew the fabric flat in the construction but after final block assembly and final iron the wrinkles appeared.

The pattern as written has you cut squares then cut the squares in half to make the triangles. Making a triangle with a really stretchy bias edge.

This method always makes wonky not square blocks for me. Typically I like to cut the squares, draw the line down the middle, and sew along the line. Then trim the 1/4 inch seam off of the drawn/sewn line. For me this holds the bias in check! bad bias bad bad bias!

I could have taken the time to figure out the sizes to cut to make this happen but I just decided to go with the pattern as written and here we are.

I am going with what I have. It is in fact not a really big deal-e-o.  My feeling is once I add sashing... and maybe some corner stone...s then do the final quilting... and then after the first wash these little wrinkles will blend in and be a thing of the past :)

The finished size per the directions is 12.5x12.5 and I am exactly on!!! over all it is a cute block and I am happy!!!


We are now into a new year! yeah for 2014!!! And with each new year comes some new sewing projects for me!
I just love BOM (block of the month) clubs and have decided to go along with 4 of them this year. My theory is that this will give me one project each week to keep me busy.
Add all this with my WIP projects and everyday fun... I plan to have an awesome 2014!

First up! I have decided one of these BOM projects will be a quilt designed by Amy Gibson on her blog:
It is not a free pattern but the price is low ($7.95) and this get's you an email each month that has a pattern to follow using your own fabric and a recipe for a sweet treat to cook as well! Plus, she is also adding a personal challenge for us to keep the year upbeat and positive.

So, first up the block!
Here is my completed block :) like all things in life this one is not perfect, in fact is really is way off lol!
January Sugar Block Club 2014
My dilemma this month is that my regular sewing machine is in for repairs so my choices were to wait until the shop called and I got my machine back (with all the fancy quilting gadgets and presser feet) and get a really accurate quarter inch seam or go for it and use my daughters machine.
Patience is a virtue I do not really have when it comes to getting things done (why wait when there is work to be done??) so I went for it!
In the end I have a smidge bigger than 12 inch block that can be pulled slightly and will end up at the desired 12.5 inch square size. And since this quilt is for me I am totally good with this!
I just love the colors on this one (note to self get a photo box made so you can take some better color quality pictures!!!).

I do not have a stack of pre-purchased fabric for this quilt. My plan is to buy and/or gather from my stash what I need each month to make the block. I like doing this because it helps stretch out the expense of purchasing fabric and I don't have to commit to any one line or specific fabrics.
I intend as well, to use the purchased fabrics with the Farmer's Wife Quilt I am working on. Also, maybe (if it fits with the theme of the person I am sewing for) the block I need to make for my other BOM (Stash Bee) this year that entails sewing something for someone else. Thrifty ain't she ;)

Next up the personal challenge: Be intentional
Amy's advice, and how appropriate for January ah, is to make plans for things that will make you a better you, what ever they may be and do it! Be intentional with yourself!
I am not really sure just yet what this will mean for me. I am a pretty direct person and lead myself strongly in a direction I (and stress that "I") want to take (I am married so some exceptions are made for him ;).
In the past I have allowed others to influence me into being or doing something that I was just not committed to. I did things (like work for a company I was at odds with because the salary and benefits were great) that did not serve me mentally and spiritually. I am no longer employed and am much happier inside and out!
One goal I am thinking on is getting the gumption to do a 5k run this year. I am not sure where to start exactly but it is on my mind!

Lastly, the sweet part of the month :) after all it is the "sugar" "block" club right!
Amy has shared her family's favorite "Hearty Pumpkin Pancakes" recipe. And what a coincidence!! This fall I ended up with a bunch of pie pumpkins that I cooked up and made into homemade- preservative free- pumpkin puree! yippee! Too bad they are all frozen in freezer bags at the moment because I would totally make some right now! updates to follow...

Thanks for reading along,
Happy Sewing!!
Melodee :)

Stash Bee BOM 2014

April 2014
New month new hive member is in charge! This time it is Kim from Windsor and Main who has requested the cutest block! I really loved how little main fabric this one needs!
I am thinking that once I get all my ducks in a row and a few WIP's and UFO's out of the way I am going to use this block to clean up some of my larger scraps in the now 6 tubs of scraps!!! Here's hoping I can keep up with myself sheesh! happy sewing everyone!!

March 2014
My month!! :) YIPEE FOR ME!!! here is what I had the gals sew up for me...
I created the pattern from an image I had seen on Pinterest. I like to keep my graph paper notebook and colored pencils next to my bed and when I am on Pinterest or the internet and find an image that strikes me as a must do I like to take out this notebook and sketch up how I would make the block or thing to look for me. I had sketched up this block last year and blogged about it here.
The gals in my hive, Hive 6 of Stash Bee, were all A-OK with my tutorial too! Thank you ma'am! I was a bit nervous because we all have our own ways of doing things and I was unsure if this would translate well into helping others know what I mean and how I mean for them to do the thing.
At this time I have received all the blocks from the ladies in my hive. I had taken a picture of what I had on hand and thought, incorrectly is seems, that this was all the blocks I was going to receive.
Well, surprise surprise! the next day in the mail two more blocks arrived! I had mistakenly marked all blocks as received on my list when in reality I had only seen online that these two blocks had been made!
This actually was really great news! While I love this quilt (in the picture above), it is kind of long and narrow. I would have loved to add another row to right side and beef up the size of this quilt. Fate is seems intervened and with the addition of two more blocks this made the decision easy! 
I am now in the process of making more of my own blocks to complete this top! I will update with the finished top soon :)
On my list of what's next for this quilt is how to quilt it??? I know I want to do a pearl cotton hand quilt but how I will actually do this is still in the clouds.
February 2014
Here we go again! another month and a new Hive Mama and a new block.
This month we were challenged to make two kinds of blocks, Either a 13.5 x 6.5 block or a 6.5 x 6.5 block. we were told we could use any fabric we liked and could choose our method of applique but we were to pick any type of flower or heart to applique onto the blocks.
I couldn't choose just one so I decided to do a few :)


Well here I go again...another Block of the Month sew along for me this year! 2014 is off to a great start!!

This time I am doing the Stash Bee. Unfortunately, I do believe the Bee is closed to new members for this year (I could be wrong) but keep it in mind for next year! Sign ups being in December :)

With this bee I will be working in a team (they are called hives) to create cooperative quilts :) It's like the old time Quilt Bee with each member making just one block to be added to one quilt.

We rotate being the lady (aka Queen Bee) to receive the blocks each month so everyone in the Hive will have a quilt all their own sometime throughout the year (I'm March)!

And even better the quilt blocks we make each month are different! Each month a new Queen Bee gets to pick out what block the other hive members will make and we send that block to her.

When making a traditional quilt I decide what block to make then set about collecting fabric and sewing each block myself.

But in a Quilt Bee, I still pick the block and give color suggestions but my hive members pick the exact fabrics and sew each of the blocks up!  When I receive the blocks it will be my job to sew them into final quilt.

Here is my finish for the January block :) It was sewn for Courtney who blogs here.

When I first saw the tutorial from Courtney on this block I thought oh how cute and so easy peasy! look all straight lines (no curves!).
But once I got to the work of sewing I made a mountain out of a mole hill and really made this a tough block to line up! But isn't that just how it goes when we are sewing something for someone else?? I am pleased with the block and I truly hope that my block plays well with the others :)
More on this project next month,
Happy sewing!!
Melodee :)

Vice Versa BOM 2014

April 2014
This was a fun block to sew!!
First our BOM leader, Ann Marie at gen X quilters really loves this block and it is so great to share in another's excitement!! Plus, I am just loving how modern and clean these blocks are sewing up!
This is my first time doing a solid color quilt and I am here to say it will not be my last!
This BOM has really opened up my sewing world to the idea that a solid is more than just an accent fabric or a thing that goes on the back!!


MARCH 2014

A new month and new block...sort of :)
When I printed the packet of directions for this months block I was confused for a minute. As I looked over the pages I had this really weird feeling and thought, didn't I already sew this block?!?! what was going on!!
Well, a quick review of my site here told me the answer! two BOM's this year have chosen the same block!
OK! mental-meltdown averted and sewing commenced! Finished results are in :))
and here is my block ...

and here is it's reverse...

February 2014

January 2014

More Block's of the Month under construction :) 

This time I am sewing along with Annemarie of Gen X Quilters for her 2014 BOM called Vise Versa. The patterns that are emailed to you each month cost $15 for the year (you can pay once or make monthly payments too). And you will need to buy your own fabrics. But wowzer is this a cute modern quilt!

Here are my January blocks all done! Check this thing out, how cool is this! notice that the first block is the "normal" block and the second block is the "reverse" block. so the whites and solids swap places for this really interesting effect!

My plan was actually to let this BOM be on the to do list for the second week of each month but I just couldn't help myself! haha maybe I can wait next month??

These were pretty easy blocks to assemble but it took me a few minutes to sit back and LOOK at the pieces I cut and do nothing else but get my brain to visualize what needed to be done!

The pattern calls for pieces A,B,C,D,E,F and not dark blue, light blue, etc. so taking your time on this one is really important!
I am glad I did because after I made all the HST (half-square triangles) I tried to lay them out into what would be the finished block placement. It just didn't seem right at first, then I realized I had misplaced the gray and dark blue.
Thankfully I was patient with these blocks and did not jump into sewing so it was a simple matter of just moving the cut pieces into the correct placement :) all problems were avoided!!
and my finished Pete and Repeat blocks...

I am so happy with the way these turned out. I have never done a quilt in all solids before!! I thought the fabric picking and placing was going to be really hard. But good news to report, it was very easy! I am even thinking of adding a couple more (purple is on my mind) to this mix.

Oh and if your wondering I am using Kona solids and yes I still need to make a good light box for taking better color quality pictures! That sounds like a good weekend project for me to tackle :)

Hope you like my blocks and maybe check out this BOM! Pop back next month for the February blocks :) and a big THANK YOU goes out to my darling daughter who has graciously allowed me to borrow her sewing machine while mine is being serviced :) you are da bomb!!

Happy sewing!