Metro Rings is Done!

Metro Rings complete

There it is, in all its glory, my complete Metro Rings. I think this is the best thing I’ve ever made, or at the very least, the best quilting I’ve ever done.

Metro Rings quilting

The quilting, first stitching in the ditch around the rings with my walking foot and then filling in the FMQ bits took all month, but it was so worth it in the end.

Metro Rings

The grey borders are filled with a FMQ stipple, and the quilt is bound in the tangerine Modern Floral from Botanics.

Orange binding!

I’m so glad this is done; I can’t wait to give it to my friends B&G, who are getting married next month. I’m linking this up with the Sew Kind of Wonderful Quick Curve Ruler linkup. This was also my ALOYF August goal, and I’m linking up there as well!

Metro Rings

Sew Kind of Wonderful Blog Hop

Welcome to my stop on the Sew Kind of Wonderful Blog Hop!

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When I started quilting, I appreciated the ability to be precise in cutting fabric. When a pattern calls for a 3″ square, I can cut a precise square using rulers, a mat, and a rotary cutter. Curves kind of wigged me out because they seemed so… imprecise. Enter the Quick Curve Ruler, a tool that makes cutting curves downright scientific. The ruler has a curved slit and is marked with a quarter-inch grid as well as curve guides, which helps with lining up and trimming blocks. If the fabric is the right size and shape and the ruler placed properly, every curve will be almost exactly like every other curve. Precision!

Jenny Pedigo at Sew Kind of Wonderful kindly provided the Metro Medallion pattern and I dove right in. I cut all my rectangles and lined up the QCR and began to cut curves.

Cutting curves for Metro Medallion

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Both small almond piece and larger piece are used in this pattern, which means there’s very little waste. The curved edge pieces are cut in a similar way, but this time, the previous curve cut is lined up with one of the curve guides marked on the ruler.

Metro Medallion border fabric

Cutting fabric for Metro Medallion seemed to take less time than cutting for Metro Rings and before long, I had neat piles of all pieces needed for the pattern.

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After a bit of chain piecing, I had all my block components ready for trimming. When I was piecing Metro Medallion, NaNa suggested marking the QCR’s 1/8” line for ease in trimming. I also marked the 4.5 line on the ruler and folded my component blocks in half, lining up the curves, to mark the center of the block.

Lining up curves

Curves are nicely lined up

To trim, I lined the fold up with the marked 4.5” line on the QCR and made sure the curved seam lined up with the 1/8th” line.

Getting ready to trim

This makes sure that the curve points don’t get cut off – not a big deal in the Metro Medallions pattern, but I still want to be precise.

Metro Medallion component block

And here’s the first finished block! The pattern also has a variation with corner triangles; I’m going to sew those on once all blocks are complete to make sure colors are balanced. I’m looking forward to sewing up the top, so many of my favorite fabrics are represented. I may have to keep this one for myself!

Metro Medallion block

Please go and check out Jenny’s blog and shop. You can also join the Sew Kind of Wonderful mailing list to get news of any new patterns or promotions.

There will be a linky party on the Sew Kind of Wonderful blog starting tomorrow for any quilt or block made with the Quick Curve Ruler. The party will run through 31 August. If you haven’t tried a QCR project, I believe Elizabeth will be hosting a giveaway tomorrow! And for more inspiration, check out #SKOWBlogHop on Instagram and the rest of the posts in the hop!

Monday 18 August http://quokkaquilts.com
Tuesday 19 August www.cluckclucksew.com
Wednesday 20 August www.fromthebluechair.com
Thursday 21 August liveacolorfullife.net
Friday 22 August www.happyquiltingmelissa.com
Monday 25 August www.greenfairyquiltsblog.com
Tuesday 26 August http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.com
Wednesday 27 August www.pleasant-home.com
Thursday 28 August http://www.lucymade.wordpress.com

AND

http://msmidge.blogspot.com.au

Friday 29 August www.dontcallmebetsy.com

The bloghop is going to be followed by a ‘Curve it up’ Challenge Quilt-a-long on the Sew Kind of Wonderful blog starting in September, so join in the bloghop, get inspired and get ready to Curve It Up!

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Disclosure: this post was sponsored in part by Sew Kind of Wonderful; I received the Metro Medallions pattern for free. My opinions are my own and based on my experience with the products.

Tossed Almond Top

The last couple weeks have been full of QCR projects – quilting my Metro Rings (fingers crossed will be done this weekend!), putting together and a post for my stop on the Quick Curve Ruler Blog Hop (tune in tomorrow!), and lastly, putting those Metro Ring scraps together into some sort of simple top.

Almonds top

One of the great things about cutting curves with the QCR is that all curves match. Thus, all the bits left over from the ring segments could be pieced back together into a little something. Once I had the block, which measured around 19” x 19”, I bordered it with the white crosshatch from Botanics and floated it on a field of Kona Aloe. I’m calling it Tossed Almonds; wouldn’t an entire top using that technique be something?

Center block

Right now, it’s a smidge larger than 60” x 60” and I’m debating trimming it down to crib size. Pros: more focus on center block. Cons: will no longer be throw-sized. Thoughts?

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

Space Baby Dress

In addition to pulling together my projects and post for the QCR Blog Hop (tune in on Thursday!), I also whipped up a little Geranium Dress from a Made by Rae pattern for my sweet niece. You may recall that she has a space-themed nursery, and this fabric, Riley Blake Rocket Age in Rocket Blast, begged me to turn it into a dress. A Space Baby dress.

Geranium Dress rocket ship detail

The Geranium pattern came together really quickly, even though I felled the skirt seams and had to break out my old Kenmore sewing machine to do the zigzag around the flutter sleeves and skirt gathers.

Tiny felled seam!

I love that all seams, except for the flutter sleeves, are enclosed, which means that hopefully the dress will wear and wash well. Key when sewing for a baby.

Dress lining

I broke out the Kenmore again for buttonholes and let me tell you: the automatic buttonhole feature is MAGICAL. I want to sew another garment just to sew more buttons. And the buttons themselves are pretty rad; I do love a good pop of alternate color.

Orange buttons say hooray

Here’s hoping it fits for at least a little while! If not, the pattern was so quick and charming that I may have to make another in the next size up!

Geranium in Space

Metro Rings FMQ

You guessed it, I’m still working on my Metro Rings. I’m filling in spaces with free motion loops and stipples and it is going well!. Here’s a little sample:

I’ve also been cutting and sewing for my QCR blog hop post, but you’ll have to tune in next week for the reveal(s)! In the meantime, I’m linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Thanks so much for your thoughts on work and craft. It seems like a lot of us are in the process of thinking on this issue and living in this tension. This week for me at least feels more hopeful; I have a game plan for some additional creating on the side of my 9-5. Within my 9-5, my manager told me yesterday that she knows I’m creative and wants to use these juices in a few upcoming projects. So my mindframe is hopeful. Here’s hoping for creative outlets for you as well!

Last night’s Arcade Fire show included Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) which I’ve been humming all morning. Yes.

Work in Progress

I’ve been thinking a lot about my work lately, both my 9-5 job and the time I spend making things out of yarn and fabric. I would love to have a job that would allow me to to use my time and energy more creatively but I’m not sure how to get there. This has been an ongoing discussion between me and my husband for the past few months and I don’t yet have any firm plans on how to scratch this itch.

When I get blue about my voice as a maker or when I doubt my ideas or skills, or when I fear that I’ll spend all my days staring at spreadsheets in a cubicle, I have to remind myself that I’m comparing my beginning with someone else’s middle. I’m working and I’m in progress.

Quilting Metro Rings is coming along, still. I feel like I’ll be saying that for a while yet, but I really want to finish it by the end of the month. And in the meantime, I wanted to start something new, so pulled the following fabrics for a Metro Medallion quilt.

Happy fabric pull

A good half of those are personal favorites. There’s some Tula, some AMH, some Rashida, Melody Miller arrows, Patty Young bumblebees, and Lizzy House stars. And then I needed an extra magenta and had to seriously give myself a pep talk to pull my one precious Mendocino fat quarter. But good, lovely fabric is mean to be turned into something good and lovely, wouldn’t you agree?


This introspective WIP Wednesday post is being linked up with Freshly Pieced! Boom!

Announcing the Quick Curve Ruler Blog Hop!

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The Sew Kind of Wonderful blog hop kicked off yesterday at Quokka Quilts. This is the first blog hop I’ve ever participated in and I’m thrilled to be posting in a few weeks alongside these talented, creative sewists! I’ve really been inspired by the Quick Curve Ruler and it has opened up a world of curved seam ideas. After the blog hop, there will be a Quick Curve Ruler linky party on the Sew Kind of Wonderful Blog, which will be open from 29 – 31 August. You can link up any block or project made from the QCR. And if you don’t have a QCR, there will be a chance to win one during the blog hop, so check out the other posts!

Monday 18 August http://quokkaquilts.com
Tuesday 19 August www.cluckclucksew.com
Wednesday 20 August www.fromthebluechair.com
Thursday 21 August liveacolorfullife.net
Friday 22 August www.happyquiltingmelissa.com
Monday 25 August www.greenfairyquiltsblog.com
Tuesday 26 August http://blog.sewbittersweetdesigns.com
Wednesday 27 August www.pleasant-home.com
Thursday 28 August http://www.lucymade.wordpress.com

AND

http://msmidge.blogspot.com.au

Friday 29 August http://>www.dontcallmebetsy.com

Here’s a little tease of one of the projects I’m going to highlight in my post in two weeks using Metro Rings leftovers.

A little QCR fun!

The blog hop is going to be followed by a ‘Curve it up’ Challenge Quilt-a-long on the Sew Kind of Wonderful blog starting in September, so join in the blog hop, get inspired, and get ready to Curve It Up! Please go and check out Jenny’s blog and shop. You can also join the Sew Kind of Wonderful mailing list to get news of any new patterns or promotions.

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Metro Quilting

I’ve been chugging along with quilting my Botanics Metro Rings this week. After thinking and doodling, I settled on the following pattern and dove right in.

Metro Rings quilting

At first, I was going to switch between the walking foot and the FMQ foot and quilt each block separately. When I realized that this method would make so, so many loose threads I’d have to tie and bury at the end, I decided to switch to stitching in the ditch along the ring sections and then FMQ in the negative space once that is complete. This seems to be working well; each row is quicker than the last as I get the hang of using my walking foot.

Keep an eye out later this month for more Quick Curve Ruler inspiration – I’m going to be participating in a QCR blog hop hosted by Laura at Quokka Quilts!

Finishing this is going to be my ALOYF August Goal – I think I can make it! Also, I’m linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Metro Top

The Metro Rings top came together so quickly! I was surprised, after all the trimming and pressing and sewing and more trimming when I looked around and realized that all my blocks were square and all that was left to do was to sew them together!

Metro Rings top

Tonight, I plan to pin baste and then I’ll start on quilting. I’ve been browsing Pinterest for DWR quilting inspiration and found some good ideas. I really like the original heavy quilting done by longarm by Jenny at Sew Kind of Wonderful but I’m not confident in my straight line quilting ability yet. This pin of the backside of a Metro Rings from Francesca Plancher is gorgeous – I love the negative space where the ring segments are. Anyone know if Francesca is the original source or if it comes from elsewhere? Google Image Search let me down.

Nearly matchy points!

Here’s another Metro Rings with great negative space use from Helen Robinson’s Instagram. I think I’m going to aim for something like this!

Metro Rings side view

Finishing the Metro Rings top was my Lovely Year of Finishes goal for July!