Getting Back To It

Well, hello there, unintentional month-and-a-half blogging hiatus. February was rough, yo. I think I was sick for the last month and a half, which isn’t pleasant in the best of weather. But here north of Boston, we have many feet of snow, which has pulverized our public transportation system (aka how I get to work every day). Not feeling well + commuting for several hours a day on crowded trains with cranky fellow commuters has left me very tired at the end of the day, so much so that crafting hasn’t been my number one priority.

To be completely honest, most nights I watch Jeopardy and then go to bed.

I did spin a little, turning this delicious Malabrigo Nube braid into 324 sproingy yards of delicious sport-weight yarn.

Malabrigo Nube

Malabrigo Nube

The braid itself wasn’t the easiest spin. The fibers seemed very compacted, so it was difficult to pull apart and each piece needed to be fluffed a bit before spinning. I was going for a slightly thicker spin (than my usual super thin) and I’m very happy with the finished product.

Malabrigo Nube

But! It is now March! We’ve gotten through yet another February and Spring, the most wonderful season, approaches! Already the light is returning and days are noticeably longer. Now for temperatures to rise above freezing and the snow to melt (also, for the storm scheduled to dump more snow on us tonight to not dump as much snow as predicted).

And it being March means that the wedding of my dear friend S is a little over two months away, so I better bust a move on the HST Chuppah. Today, I sewed all the HSTs and started trimming.

Stack o' HSTs

Stack o' HSTs

I’d really like to finish this top by the end of the month, so for a bit of motivation, I’m making this my March ALOYF goal.

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Finished Neptune!

Finished Neptune!

Neptune is finished finished finished! I’m so very pleased with this quilt. I’ve seen my sewing skills improve over the course of making it – things like accurate piecing, matching points and corners, and general confidence.

Back of Neptune

Every time I get in bed, the corner flips back to reveal the happy frolicking kitties on the Lizzy House fabric, and I smile. I think it is very important to smile before you go to bed; this kitty fabric was therefore a very wise decision.

Neptune on the bed

Yes, to get this shot, I was standing on top of our dresser, holding the camera as far back as I could. I wish it were just a smidge longer on the the sides, as I’m a complete blanket hog, but I love it, it is done, and it really brightens up our room. My husband, he of beige and navy bedding, walked in while I was taking this, took a long look, and then told me that I make him less boring. That’s winning, I suppose.

And I finished my Lovely Year of Finishes goal!

My Button

Stats
Size: 72″ × 90″
Pattern: Sugar Block Club 2013, Traveling Star, assorted blocks from Vintage Quilt Revival
Quilting: All over stipple on my Juki
Fabric: Kona Poseidon bundle + a few extra Kona solids in pink, purple, blue, and yellow for the front and Lizzy House Catnap on the back

Quilting Neptune

Quilt of Neptune is nearly finished!

Quilt of Neptune

I finished the quilting yesterday, will bind today, wash for crinkle tomorrow, and then put it on the bed where it belongs!

Linking up this oh-so-brief post with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

To Finish In March

I’ve been wanting to participate in A Lovely Year of Finishes at Fiber of All Sorts for a couple of months now, but my ducks just haven’t seemed to get neatly in a row. January was a month of alternating travel and sickness, February was All Olympics and knitting (tune in this weekend to see a sock FO!), but March will be the month I finish my Quilt of Poseidon. If I end up calling it that. It’s a mashup of 12″ squares from the 2013 Sugar Block Club, Vintage Quilt Revival, and I think a couple of other sources, laid out using the Sampler Quilt On-Point pattern from Vintage Quilt Revival.

So that’s the plan. Here’s a small, dark, blurry phone shot of the progress:

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According to the running document I keep of my projects, I’ve completed 19/20 blocks. I have fabric and paper piecing templates cut for that last block (the pesky February Block from the Sugar Block Club, for those of you keeping a running tally) and I have the fabric for the simple repeating blocks, the binding, and the back, which will be the delicious Kitty Dreams and Butterflies prints from Lizzy House’s Catnap.

Catnap fabric!

Delicious. Also, my husband picked it out all by himself, and who am I to argue with that level of fabric selecting genius?

I will finish this in March. I will, I will, I will. I want this on our bed by the time the snow melts!

Linking up with the March Goal Setting Party!
A Lovely Year of Finishes

Blue Cross Block

I’ve finished one more Poseidon block! This is Red Cross (well, Blue Cross) from Vintage Quilt Revival. It’s paper pieced, and while the component blocks went together easily, putting the block together was more difficult for me. I repicked it several times trying to get the points to match closer, and finally decided that it was Just Fine.

Red Cross Block

With this one done, I only have three more blocks to finish! And one of those, Geometric Star, is half pieced. I need to cut fabric for the other two (Dakota Star and the February Sugar Block I’m going to remake) and cut fabric for the alternating plain blocks, but this is coming along! I want to have it done by spring to freshen up our bedroom.

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

Four More Poseidon Blocks

I’ve had a bad winter head cold over the past week and a half. The weekend was spent in a haze of nose blowing, soup making, and sitting on the couch with a glazed expression on my face. I did find that leaning forward over my cutting/sewing table helped alleviate some of my congestion, so I cut fabric for all the rest of my Quilt of Poseidon blocks. And since Saturday, I’ve sewn four more!

First up, Ribbon Star. The tutorial for this one was part of Faith at Fresh Lemons’ Solstice Stars Series.

Ribbon Star Block

Next, Mosaic No. 8 from Vintage Quilt Revival. I think I’m getting better about keeping my seams even and matching points and corners.

Mosaic No. 8 Block

The other blocks I want to make are all paper pieced from Vintage Quilt Revival. Small plug: this book really is fantastic. All the internet hype is true. I started what I thought would be the easiest, sewed up all the templates, and was about to stitch them together into a block when this happened:

Oops... Improperly printed templates!

Yup, improperly printed templates strike again! I had printed one copy of the Dakota Star template and checked it for accuracy, but forgot to check the settings before printing the other three copies. Blame the head cold, if you will. As soon as I realized, I checked my other templates and reprinted the ones that weren’t the correct size. Two were the right size, Exploding Star and Wheel of Fortune.

Exploding Star Block

Wheel of Fortune Block

These two came together mostly OK – I cut the green fabric nearly too small on Wheel of Fortune and had to piece it in places, but it looks fine. And I’ve reprinted the last few templates and I’m hoping to finish these by the end of the month! Regardless, I feel very productive despite being a bit sicky!

Thank so much for your advice on requilting Foxes Out My Window – I’m still having a think, but I like thought of pinning for extra stability. I’ll keep you posted!

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

First WIP Wednesday of 2014!

Oh hello, first WIP Wednesday of the new year! I’m looking forward to busting through some WIPs this year, now that I am sewing on this:

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My very clever husband suggested a new sewing machine for Christmas, which I thought was a brilliant idea. My new Juki TL-2010Q sews like a dream, and I whipped out a throw-sized top from all those Constellations triangles I cut! I don’t have a whole photo of this finished top yet, but here’s a glimpse.

Constellations quilt top

I also finished all the blocks for the 2013 Sugar Block. Here’s November, sewn on my old Kenmore:

Sugar Block: November

And December, sewn on the new machine:

Sugar Block: December

I’m still not exactly precise when paper piecing, but that will come with time. I’m planning on sewing a few more blocks for this quilt, mostly from Vintage Quilt Revival – it is such a great reference! But before that, I have three quilts ready for basting and quilting, hopefully starting tomorrow! I’m hoping that 2014 shapes up to be a productive year and I hope it is for you as well!

As usual, I’m linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

Lucky Star

I finished one more Sugar Block for my Quilt of Neptune this week! Here’s October’s block, Lucky Star.

October Sugar Block

I am a little behind on these, as I need to finish November’s (Friday?) and cut and finish December’s. I’m planning on adding a whole bunch of other blocks to make this a queen-sized quilt for our bed. Or maybe I’ll ponderAmy’s inspiring layout post yesterday and come up with a whole new layout!

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

Poseidon Progress

Last week, I banged out two more Sugar Blocks for my Quilt of Poseidon. First up: August.

Sugar Block: August

I had an issue with sewing those HSTs to the small solid squares in the wrong direction. Other than that, this was straightforward to put together.

Next up: A modified Come Fly With Me block for September.

Sugar Block: September

So here’s some backstory. Last month, I was having some concerns about this quilt not looking cohesive. At that point, Each block used 2 or 3 colors of the Kona bundle + a pop of pink, yellow, or purple. I hadn’t duplicated any colors in the bundle yet, and things just looked… disjointed. So I made an Arkansas Traveler from 4 already used shades (and no pop colors), and that made things feel more cohesive. And then I saw this block and knew that instead of the propeller look suggested by the pattern, I would make a granny square similar, but bigger, than the ones I’m making for my Fortunate Granny quilt.

This quick mosaic shows that it is coming together.

Quilt of Poseidon Mosaic

1. Arkansas Traveler Block, 2. Sugar Block: July, 3. Sugar Block: March, 4. Sugar Block: April, 5. Sugar Block: February, 6. Sugar Block: May, 7. Sugar Block: June, 8. Sugar Block: January, 9. Sugar Block: September, 10. Sugar Block: August, 11. The Sugar Block Club

Right? The yellow and pink aren’t too bright and distracting, right? The final quilt is going to be huuuuge – I’m aiming for final dimensions of 90 x 90 (5 x 5 12″ blocks plus sashing and borders) so I think the whole thing will look good together, I hope.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

Arkansas Traveler

Monday night, while the cold autumn wind was blowing in our 4th floor windows, I took a long look at my workspace. Stuff was piled everywhere: fabric, bits of thread, pens and markers, an errant skein of yarn, patterns, and my QAYG stocking project. I tidied up the space, took a long look at the QAYG project, and decided I’d rather cut fabric than futz with my walking foot.

A couple hours later, while humming along with Mary Poppins, I had some nice tidy stacks of squares and HSTs.

Squares and HSTs for August Sugar Block

This stack will be for September’s Sugar Block, Come Fly With Me.

Poseidon FQs for September Sugar Block

I even completed this lovely block, Arkansas Traveler. It will be part of my Sugar Block Quilt, but the tutorial, by Lee at Freshly Pieced, is part of the Summer Sampler Series

Arkansas Traveler Block

I’ve been plowing my way through Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus series. They’re pretty fun – a modern twist on Greek/Roman mythology. I used to love ancient myths as a kid, so I’m getting a kick out of seeing familiar characters and tropes revamped in a modern setting. The main character is a son of Poseidon (and gets called that several times each book by various baddies). And I’m making a quilt from a Kona Poseidon bundle (with a few other solids). I think I’m going to call the finished quilt the Quilt of Poseidon.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!