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Goal: Knit 5,000 yards of stash sock yarn
Knit on, soldier girl





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Entries in challenge quilt (6)

Thursday
Jun142012

Let's go back to November.

When I get out my camera, I get it OUT. This morning I took a heap of pictures of finished projects both new and old. Let's start back in November.

Before the Kandinsky challenge, the Kansas City Modern Quilt Guild did the Habitat challenge. Habitat is the name of Jay McCarroll's latest fabric line, and we were each given a set of fat eighths with which to make a quilt. We could add any solid or more of his fabric to our quilts.

I wanted to showcase the fabric, but since I found it a little garish, I wanted to use it sparingly. I also kept thinking about bubbles.

I started with the mustard fabric in one piece. I drew an arc (with pencil), then cut out circles using my circle cutter. I reverse-appliqued the prints using my machine. I glued them on so they would stay in place until I stitched.

Inspired by my Zentangling, I echo-quilted around all the circles. Next time, I would make the lines a little closer together. I drew them with chalk line, which got messy and sometimes confused me, too. Air soluable marker next time?

 

For the back, I used a print from Habitat (but in a different colorway).

This had a name, but for the life of me I can't remember it. It's mostly Henry's - it's a little bigger than crib-sized, and it's good for playing in the yard. And throwing up on.

Wednesday
May162012

I don't know how these things happen.

I like being a member of the Kansas City Modern Quilt Guild not only for the snacks, but also for the opportunity to try things I normally wouldn't even consider.

Take Wassily Kandinsky, for example. He was a Russian painter linked to the Bauhaus movement. I like art as much as the next girl, but my tastes don't necessarily line up with his. But when Carla announced that our next guild challenge would be a quilt inspired by one of Kandinsky's paintings, I could't resist.

I chose "From Cool Depths:"

I thought about this painting for months. I really, really liked it, and it was very different from the rest of the paintings we could select. I knew that I didn't want to make a replica of the painting, and I wasn't in love with the color story. I did, however, love the title. So I started thinking about things that come from cool depths. My first thought was a volcano, which really comes from hot depths. That made me think of an explosion, which made me think of a supernova, which made me think of the creation of the universe.

Which led to this:

It's so hard to take a good picture of this quilt because you really don't get the full effect unless you're a little distance away. It's small - about 24" x 24". I call it "In the Beginning."

For scale (and a little distance):

 I've wanted to do something pixelated for a long time. I started with 2.5" squares on my design wall, a little square of each solid in my stash, and I quickly came to two conclusions. 1. These were big and wouldn't blend the way I wanted them to. 2. I was going to need to cut more squares.

But I didn't want to cut more squares. Instead, I cut my 2.5" squares into fourths, leaving me with four 1.25" squares of each color. At our retreat, I watched Shea make anawesome tiled pillowcase, and realized when I got home that it was the perfect method for getting all of my little squares in order.

My original vision was just the colored blocks, but I quickly realized that an unfinished 1.25" square becomes just 0.75" finished, so a thick border it was. I quilted with some light blue thread to give it some more movement.

All of our challenge quilts on are display this week at the Machine Quilting Show in Overland Park, KS. If you can't make it, check out Carla's pictures. There is a ridiculous amount of talent in that room.

Monday
Apr092012

Taunting the spirits that make this child sleep.

Must blog quickly. If sleeping baby knows I'm Getting Things Done, he will immediately wake and demand to eat everything in the house. (We were actually going to the zoo today. I haven't been there since the day after I moved here almost nine years ago. On that day, I got heatstroke and threw up seven times. I am not really a fan of the KC Zoo, for obvious reasons. ANYWAY. Not going to the zoo because he is blissfully, gloriously napping.)

I have been quilting! Last weekend, I ran away from home to Lawrence, KS for the Kansas City Modern Quilt Guild's first retreat. It was awesome. Awesome friends, lots of kettlecorn, and plenty of time to sew. I began work on two, count 'em 1-2, Seeing Squares quilts (one for H, one for us), and as I was sitting a mere five feet away from the pattern's creator, I was able to also spend some time making her feel guilty about the eleventy billion seams that had to be pressed. Actually, she felt so guilty on her own that she volunteered to do some pressing for me. Do not go to a quilt retreat without Shea by your side, because she loves pressing. I hate pressing. We are a good match. While she whipped out project after project (and pressed for me!), I trucked along on my squares. Now, you should know that I'm pretty partial to doing stupid things, and doing two of these quilts at once may qualify. But I have a feeling that once I finish one, I will be tired and won't want to finish the other. So I'm looking at these two quilts as one quilt with two separate panels. And, uh, colorways.

Also, do not go to a quilt retreat without Jenny, because she will laugh at your dumb jokes and offer to cut out letters with teeny scissors because she can see the look of sheer panic on your face. Also, she is the best roommate ever because she let me have the room cold and stayed up late to talk in the dark like we were 12. I love my kid, but one of the best things about having him was becoming friends with Jenny.

It was seriously the best weekend I've had in a long time, and it's all due to the fabulous company. There were 24 of us -- some people I already knew, some I didn't, and I made a lot of new friends.

I didn't finish anything, though. And that's okay, because I really wasn't expecting to. So I came home and...

Immediately started something else.

More about this soon, I hope. It's kind of a surprise/for a guild challenge, and it no longer looks like this. It looks a lot, a lot smaller.

(Baby is awake! Nice timing, kid.)

Thursday
Apr142011

Maybe you want to see some pretty things.

And maybe I'm getting really good at wasting time when I should be working. Work! I love you! I hate you! When I don't have work, I'm sad and mopey. When I do have work, I'm very happy, yet restless. Also, it is noon and I'm still wearing pajamas. My life = glamorous.

Anyway, it's been a month since I finished Everything's Turning Up Triangles, and thought maybe I'd waited long enough to show you pictures.

P1020183

It's a big one, this quilt. And it is so well-loved already. It was on our bed for awhile - it covers a queen nicely - and then moved down to the family room, where it keeps me company while I stitch hexagon after hexagon. (Still hexagoning. Will be hexagoning for life.)

KCMQG Robert Kaufman Challenge

It's warm without being heavy, which I really love since I can't stand to have heavy blankets on me anymore.

My favorite part of the quilt is the label. The next photo is awful, and I just can't get a good picture of it. So just trust me on this one.

KCMQG Robert Kaufman Challenge

My new sewing machine (I haven't even TOLD you about my new machine, which I am so smitten with that it's ridiculous) makes letters! All on its own! All that gobbledy-gook on the binding actually says "KAM March 2011 KCMQG Challenge." I love this way of labeling a quilt, especially because my quilt labels always look...homely. This may be my new go-to.

In other news, my parents are dropping off Penny on their way to Napa tomorrow, so we will be wrangling dogs for the next week. I'm in the stage of pregnancy where we must remodel half the house NOW, so our bedroom is an utter wreck while Justin paints. I'm trying not to get too antsy about it, but I miss my bed. And not walking on Wall Street Journals as I try to get to the closet. (Sidenote: We get the Wall Street Journal for free on the weekend. It's a long story as to how that happens, but I'm afraid we're going to get it for life. We're not the kind of people who read the Wall Street Journal, as we are young with not much money, but I do enjoy the Review and weekend-ish sections. Anyway, every time I walk through the room, I see all the hoity-toity ads and reviews and I think, "If I didn't know me, I think I would hate the person who lives in this house." The end.)

Wednesday
Mar162011

Things that are making me happy*

1. New pens. This might seems like a little thing, but it's actually a huge thing. I love one brand of pen and only one. A few years ago, I bought two big packs of some pens that looked the same, but trust me, they aren't. I hate those pens. They skip, they take awhile to warm up, and the clip on the cap always breaks off. So I broke down and bought four (4!) boxes of my favorite pens. Two black, one blue, one purple. SUCK IT, AWFUL PENS. (For those interested, these are my pens of choice.)

2. KC Modern Quilt Guild. Last week's meeting was amazing. We all showed off our challenge quilts. Here's mine:

Everything's Coming Up Triangles. Photo by Carla.Carla was so nice and let me snag this picture from her blog. You should go check out the rest of the pictures she took at the meeting. It was a riot of color in that room, and every quilt was better than the last. I have a lot more to say about my quilt, but I'll save that for later in the week when I actually get my act together and take some pictures. I will say that after working on it pretty much non-stop for a week (it came out of the dryer 15 minutes before I left for Guild), I still wanted to come home and sew some more.

 

*ala the good folks at Pop Culture Happy Hour