Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Snoobi - A Finish!

This has to be my first quilt related finish in a very long time.  But it's a big one.  And I'm pleased to say that I finished it in time for my brother's birthday.  It was close though as I was still hand sewing the label down at 9 o'clock the night before our get together.

The quilt gets it's name after my brother's 2 cats - Snoopy and Ubi.  It's so hard to think up names, but this seemed appropriate as they'll likely spend more time on it then he will!

This is by far the largest quilt I've quilted on my frame so far, but I didn't have a problem with the size.  I also managed to finish it in 2.5 days, but they were very long days!  I used the Celtic Braid Pantograph by Patricia Ritter, but re-sized it to 2.75" because I wanted to make sure I didn't run out of room at the end.  (I only have a short-arm setup.)  However, because I used such a thin batting, I really had plenty of space and could have gone with something larger.  I now wish I had, because it would have taken me much fewer passes.  As it was, I ended up with 38 rows and I averaged a couple of rows an hour.

The quilt is 102" x 105" so I tried it out on our king-sized bed.  I now really, really want to finish a quilt for our bed!

Of course, I didn't have it on there for more than a couple of minutes before I had company.  Par for the course in this house.  Sam agrees though that we need our own quilt.

So the stats for this quilt are:
  • Size: 102" x 105"
  • Fabrics: 4 Jelly Rolls (Assorted), Batik fabrics for the borders and backing
  • Batting: Quilter's Dream Request Natural King Size
  • Thread: Aurifil # 2326 (piecing), Superior Threads So Fine #425 (quilting)
  • Pattern: Magic Triangles in the Strip Therapy 7 book by Brenda Henning
  • Quilting: Celtic Braids Pantograph by Patricia Ritter (38 passes, 16 bobbins)
  • Started: May 2012
  • Completed: August 25th, 2013
  • Recipient: My brother
  • This quilt was a joint effort by my mom and I and contains 3,469 pieces.
I was really surprised to find I could finish such a large quilt so quickly.  And I learned a few things in doing it as well.  I have another king sized quilt that I've almost finished piecing and this success has me eager to get back to it.  However, I have a few smaller things I have to finish up first.  (One day we will have a quilt for our bed!!!)

Pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. 
1 Timothy 2:1 (NLT)

Friday, August 23, 2013

Renovation Step #6 - Counter tops, Steps and Baseboards...

Aside from the flooring and cabinets, I've been the most excited about getting the counter tops installed.  It was rather nerve racking picking them out, because I knew whatever I chose, I would be living with it for a long, long time.  I went with laminate counter tops and ordered large samples from the manufacturers.  Once I narrowed down my choices to 3 or 4, I taped them to the walls and cabinets to see how they would work in the room.  Of course, a 5" x 7" sample can only tell you so much, so I was nervous waiting for them to arrive.  Fortunately, I like them.  They're neutral enough to go with everything and I don't see myself growing tired of them.

When we started the renovation, the stairs entering the sewing room were carpeted so we had to re-do them to match the new floors.  It's not something we've done before, but it was actually good practice because we're hoping to do the same thing to all of our stairs in the not too distant future.  I love the new look of them! (Plus they'll be so much easier to keep clean than carpet.)

That big black blob is actually David entering the room.
We've also installed the new baseboards and under cabinet trim.  I just need to touch up the paint in a few places and it'll be done.  My dad is coming this weekend to take a look at the ceiling and let me know my lighting options - recessed vs. track.  Lucky for me, he happens to be an electrician! (I have a very handy family.)  Also my husband starts vacation next week and he'll begin building my cutting and sewing tables.  (Picture me doing a little happy dance.)  Until then, I'll be patiently sewing on a folding table, envisioning the day when this renovation will finally be done!

Hatred stirs up quarrels, but love makes up for all offenses. 
Proverbs 10:12 (NLT)

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Snoobi Revisited...

Let me start off by saying that I've been told I'm overdo on pictures of my renovation and I plan to share them in my next post!

However, right now my focus has been on trying to finish a quilt by this weekend.  It wouldn't have been such a big deal if I hadn't also decided at the last minute to make it so much larger!  Initially, it was a respectable 82" x 95".  We made it so the quilt would fall to the bottom of the mattress.

But when we thought about who we were making it for, we realized it needed to be longer.  This person only has a frame and isn't the type to use a bed skirt or dust ruffle, so we wanted the quilt to fall to the bottom of the box spring.  Otherwise, you'd see this unsightly white expanse below the quilt.  And of course, I was out of the border fabric already!  But we did have plenty of HST's leftover.  So I decided to added another pieced border and to try and find a coordinating batik for a final outer border.

As usual, David was oh so helpful while sewing...

My sewing buddy David
After days of furious sewing, I've finally finished the top.  It's now 102" x 105" and should be plenty big enough!  And for as much work as it was, I really do like the look of the pieced border.

This quilt has 3,469 pieces in it and I have exactly 4 days to quilt it!  Is it possible?  Maaaybe.  Probably not.  But I'm going to give it my best shot.  Wish me luck!

Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins. 
1 Peter 4:8 (NLT)

Friday, August 16, 2013

My 'Little' Helper...

I was all set to load this quilt on the frame (now that I've finished the window seat cushion) when I decided I needed to make it bigger.  I've been trying to work on it, but as you can see, it's slow going...

My helper David
By the way, as I'm writing this, David is curled up in my lap with his paws tucked under the laptop.  It's one of his favorite positions.  He's 22 lbs though, so not all of him actually fits in my lap.

The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
Psalm 103:8 (NLT)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Renovation Step #5 - The Window Seat...

So my little project involving this...

finally turned into this...

New window seat and window seat cushion
I got the idea for the window seat from the DIY website.  You can find the plans here.  However, before you use them, I have to warn you that we didn't find them very helpful.  They did give a good high level overview of the process, but the steps weren't very accurate and we found ourselves having to think through any number of unexpected problems.  

But we persevered and several of the pets have already given it their stamp of approval!

Step by step, piece by piece, it's moving forward!

The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm. 
Exodus 14:14 (NLT)

Sunday, August 11, 2013

A Small Detour...

Although I should be busy getting that queen-sized quilt quilted (since it has to be done in 2 weeks), I decided to stop and work on a side project first.  Any guesses on what this is for?

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. 
Acts 4:12 (NLT)

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Two Heads Are Better Than One...

or so the saying goes.  But if you were watching my mom and I sew together this weekend, you'd have reason to question it.

We got together to try and finish a quilt top we started in May of last year.  Our first task was to lay out all of the blocks we had previously made.

Unfortunately, when we laid them out we found we were short 9 blocks.  So we spent the next couple of hours making the missing blocks.  Then we took another picture of the quilt and looked at it on the computer to see if we needed to move any blocks.  Notice anything about this picture? (Hint: lower right corner)

Somehow one of the blocks was made wrong.  Rather than take all those seams apart, we decided to go ahead and make one more block.  Except when we went to pull out the fabric, we discovered a ziploc bag with another 20 blocks in it!  I couldn't help but fall to the floor laughing.  I was sure we had enough blocks to start with and don't know how we possible missed these.  So we wasted the morning sewing unnecessary blocks.  Neither of us was feeling exceptionally bright at this point and hoped the rest of the project went smoother.

With the minor exception of a couple of broken needles and this strangely bent pin that my mom sewed over, the rest went pretty well.

Because there's no sashing, every single seam had to be pinned before being sewn.  There were SO many points to match up.  I don't think I've every pinned a quilt as much as this one, but the extra work was worth it.  And with two of us working on it, it went pretty quickly.

Rather than sew each border on individually, we decided to sew them on as strip sets and miter the corners.  It made adding the borders so much faster.  In no time at all, we finished the top.  We're calling it Snoobi and it has 2,826 pieces in it.

I'm not sure if it's possible, but I'm hoping to get this quilted within the next few weeks.  Fingers crossed I can get it done.

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.
James 1:2-3 (NLT)

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Renovation Giveaway #4 - More Books... (Winner Announced)

As I mentioned earlier, I have a lot more books to find new homes for, so here's another set I'm giving away to anyone who's interested.  There are 7 books in this grouping:

from the cover of Quilter's Newsletter Magazine
Winding Ways Quilts by Nancy Elliot MacDonald
Quilting Curves by Vikki Pignatelli
Quiltscapes II by Rebecca Barker
Spirit of the Northwoods by Debbie Field
Landscape Quilts by Nancy Zieman and Natalie Sewell
Tessellation Quilts by Christine Porter
All 7 books will go to one person.  If you're interested in them, leave me a comment below telling me your favorite cartoon character as a child.  (This isn't mandatory, but makes for more interesting reading.)  I really liked Marvin the Martian even though he wasn't a really 'nice' character.  He was just so darned cute!  (Sorry, but this giveaway is open to US addresses only.)

8/11/13 - Congratulations Sandie @ crazy'boutquilts!  I've sent you an email.