Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Bunny blocks - Building Blocks Tuesday

Happy Tuesday!

This past weekend, I was lucky enough to go to my first quilting retreat!  The guild I belong to up in the local mountains hosts an annual retreat and I finally signed up for it.  It is held at the Ability First / Camp Paivika facility that I have mentioned a few times as the main beneficiary of the guild's charity efforts.  I've been to the camp before for luncheons but never stayed overnight.  It was lovely!

In addition to being able to sew all I wanted until all hours without anyone saying, "you're still sewing?", I also got to know some guild members better and I didn't have to cook anything all weekend!  Being kid-free was also a nice change!  I had such a great time that I can't wait until next year's retreat, 'cause I am IN!!

It seems that a common issue when packing for a retreat, is that we tend to pack more projects than we can possibly complete.  I didn't really see that as an issue as long as I was managing my expectations of actually getting them done.  I packed: 1) a project that I really needed to get started because I had promised it to someone ages ago, 2) a new project that I was very anxious to get started, 3) a mini quilt that needed quilting (in case I felt like doing something other than piecing), 4) a project that at this stage didn't require any stitching at all, only drawing, and 5) some EPP, in case the power went out or something.  I only hoped to get started on Project #1 and #2, and I did!

Here are some of the fruits of my labor for the weekend!  This adorable bunny block from the Fancy Forest pattern by Elizabeth Hartman (affiliate link**).

Bunny block

Isn't he cute????  And of course, bunnies have a tendency to multiply.....

Bunny blocks multiplied!

I just adore these bunnies!  I also started on the owls for the pattern, but didn't finish them.  Perhaps I will have at least one of those to share next week.

I will warn anyone planning on doing these creatures that they are tedious.  NOT difficult! Just tedious.  I spent the entire day before the retreat cutting my fabric into strips, and I didn't even get to the subcutting for the blocks.  A good part of each morning at retreat was spent doing that cutting for the block I planned to make that day, then I would piece the blocks the rest of the day.  It took all day on Saturday to make these bunnies from 7 am to about midnight.  I did make a mistake late in the evening and spent a couple of hours fixing my mistake (on 7 of those darn bunnies!), but even so it took quite a while to get these bunnies done and some of the other animals in the pattern have even more pieces!  As I said, I started on one of the owls from the pattern, and one eye alone has about 14 pieces.  Even with that said, watching these faces come to life as you stitch them together is so much fun!

Elizabeth also has a new class on Craftsy called Patchwork Piecing: Woodland Animals (affiliate link**), which has a bear and deer pattern. I am SOOOOOO tempted!!  The bear in particular is so cute!

What blocks have you been working on this week?  I would love to see.  Link up your fabulous blocks.  You put a lot of hard work into them - show them off!  This free linky will stay open until the first Monday of next month, but I will repost it every Tuesday until a new month starts.


Quilter in the Closet

Rules:

1) Please link up only to the page on your blog showing your wonderful blocks, not just the blog homepage.  Flickr and Instagram pictures are also OK.
2) Make sure to put your blog name as the description so people know where they are going or the name of your block!
3) Please grab my button and post it in your blog post or sidebar.
4) Visit other linky participants!

Thanks for reading,

Jennie


***This post may contain affiliate links.  If you purchase something after clicking on one of my links, I may be compensated.



Sunday, May 1, 2016

Inspirational Sunday (8) - via QuiltConWest 2016

Hello Everyone!  Today, I thought I would share some quilts from the Minimalist Design category.

First up is one of my favorites, called "Sunburst" by Yvonne Fuchs of Tehachapi, California.  It is machine pieced and machine quilted without a frame.


"Sunburst" by Yvonne Fuchs of Tehachapi, CA


This quilt was inspired by one of the design sparks in the QDAD (Quilt Design a Day) group on Facebook.

Next up is "You and Me" by Kristyn McCoy of Ilderton, Ontario, Canada.  It is machine pieced and machine quilted on a frame.


"You And Me" by Kristyn McCoy of Ilderton, Ontario, Canada.


Not only did she use last year's Pantone color of the year (Marsala), she learned this quilting technique from a class with Krista Withers at QuiltCon 2015.  Since I was about to take Krista's class that day, I wanted to have an example of what her technique looked like executed by someone else.


close up of "You And Me" by Kristyn McCoy of Ilderton, Ontario, Canada.


This quilt sold for $400.

Next up, "Thoroughly Modern Jacquie" by Katherine Jones of Chigwell, Tasmania Australia.  It is machine pieced and machine quilted without a frame.


"Thoroughly Modern Jacquie" by Katherine Jones of Chigwell, Tasmania, Australia.

Take a look at how perfect that straight line quilting is!

close up of "Thoroughly Modern Jacquie" by Katherine Jones of Chigwell, Tasmania, Australia.


This quilt sold for $600.

"Antlers" by Nancy Purvis of Garner, North Carolina is next.  It is machine pieced and machine quilted without a frame.  It also uses the wrong side of the fabrics to make the antlers look folded.


"Antlers" by Nancy Purvis of Garner, North Carolina


Finally for today, "Bubble Gum" by Margaret (Kathy) Greer of Port Angeles, Washington.  It is machine pieced and machine quilted without a frame.  All circles were created using reverse applique with freezer paper.


"Bubble Gum" by Margaret (Kathy) Greer of Port Angeles, Washington.


This quilt won 1st prize in the category!


That's all I have for today.  Thanks for reading!


Jen



Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Bunnies, Blocks and Snakes - Building Blocks Tuesday/Wednesday

A day late and a dollar short.

I barely had time for sewing much this Tuesday, but luckily these guild blocks were super easy and quick to whip up.

Untitled

I was hoping to get a little more sewing done this morning before heading off to the DMV (oh joy), but I spent the morning putting together the guild newsletter.  It doesn't take too long, but obviously, if I am sitting at the computer, I'm not sitting at my sewing machine.

In other news, we have really had some interesting experiences around here the last couple of days.  If you remember, last summer we moved from the beach to the outskirts of the suburbs of Orange County.  It is more "country" here than the beach, as evidenced by this guy startling me as I was planting some raspberry bushes near the house.

Untitled

He is just a gopher snake (I hope), but you better believe I let out a good screech when I saw him slither about a foot away from where I was kneeling.  He wasn't tiny either!  About 5 feet long and looking well fed in the middle.

And then this morning, Reagan was playing with this little guy.

Baby bunny

This poor little guy was in complete shock.  He had an injured leg - not sure if the dog did that or if he found him that way.  The girls were delighted to hold him for a few minutes, and then we had a short talk about "nature's course".   I don't want to sound completely heartless, but a vet trip and adoption were out of the question.  I put him back outside where I know the bunnies have a den and he did crawl inside. I wish him the best of luck, until he starts eating my vegetables that is!

What blocks have you been working on this week?  I would love to see.  Link up your fabulous blocks.  You put a lot of hard work into them - show them off!  This free linky will stay open until the first Monday of next month, but I will repost it every Tuesday until a new month starts.


Quilter in the Closet

Rules:

1) Please link up only to the page in your blog showing your wonderful blocks, not just the blog homepage.  Flickr and Instagram pictures are also OK.
2) Make sure to put your blog name as the description so people know where they are going or the name of your block!
3) Please grab my button and post it in your blog post or sidebar.
4) Visit other linky participants!

Thanks for reading,

Jen