Friday, July 12, 2019

Fremont Tote

I'm about to go on a 2 week trip (including a 14-hour flight with a 7 year old ... wish me luck) to Shanghai, and I wanted to make a bag for the trip. I wanted something that was roomy, versatile, and able to withstand the rigors of weather and travel.

Enter the Fremont Tote designed by Ellie Lum of Klumhouse. I was in love with this bag as soon as I saw it, because there's lots of hardware (which I love), it has a great look, but feels very hardwearing. That's probably due to the materials it's made out of: waxed canvas. Oh, and that mustard yellow? One of my favorite colors, for sure.

I've never used waxed canvas before, and it's probably one of the heaviest fabrics I've worked with, but surprise surprise, this is probably one of the easiest bags I've ever made. I suffered no broken needles, no screaming in frustration, no tears, and I didn't even break out into a sweat. This bag is that easy, and thanks to the materials and the hardware, it looks really professional!

I purchased a kit which meant the leather / hardware is all there, which is very helpful as I did not want to have to source all that, considering I don't use this kind of material all that often. The only tools I had to provide was a rotary punch, a hammer and screwdriver. Putting in the hardware is very, very fun.

I'm super happy with the end result. You know how sometimes you make something and it just doesn't look like the picture in the pattern? Well, I think mine looks about as close as I could expect to the picture in the pattern!

There are other colors this bag kit comes in, including a black on black that I'm eyeing. All I need now is a coupon and an excuse.

***

I'm currently on vacation and both my email and blog access is blocked, so I won't be able to reply until I return. Thanks for reading!

Friday, June 28, 2019

Reel Window

If I rated my quilts based on the amount of time they spent on the frame, Reel Window would rank at the top. By a long shot. I think this quilt spent a record of 10 weeks on the frame. I had a lot of other fun things in my life distracting me, and I just kept procrastinating on working this quilt. Actual number of hours that went into quilting this quilt is ... probably ... 16? 18? I don't really keep track. Maybe I should.

The pattern is called Open Your Window by Zen Chic, and the fabric is also by Zen Chic (have I mentioned yet that she's my favorite designer?) called Reel Time. So I combined the two to name this quilt Reel Window. When I finished piecing this, I thought to myself that this quilt feels very retro and simultaneously techy. Swirls would be so wrong for this.

So of course I had to quilt swirls. But they are embedded into a network of circuits, which is also why this quilt took forever. My machine, as fabulous as it is, just doesn't like this design. No, let me rephrase that. My machine hates this design. So it was a rather frustrating process, even if the end result is pretty cool.

I quilted the focal fabrics with some simple geometric designs and filled in the empty blocks with ghost blocks. I used two designs, a dot-to-dot design and a piano key-type design.

The back of this quilt shows off the circuit design even more.

In conclusion, I really love this quilt and I think this is some of my best quilting yet, but it completely exposed a major shortcoming with my machine. I don't want to make this post any longer, so I'll probably write about "the defect" in a future post. For now, I'll enjoy this new addition to my quilt collection and enjoy adding a new design to my arsenal.

***

Linking up with: My Quilt Infatuation, Busy Hands Quilts, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Cooking Up Quilts, Powered by Quilting, and Meadow Mist Designs.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

QuiltCon 2020 Registration

Well, that was easier than expected!

I get antsy every year while registering for QuiltCon. It reminds me of registering for college classes, that nail-biting nervousness. What if the server crashes? What if I can't get into the classes I wanted to get into? I always come well-prepared, and two minutes before registration begins, I could feel my heartbeat gradually increase in speed.

There are lots of quilt shows every year across the US, some even fairly local to me, but for all these other shows, I'm rarely, if ever, interested in the classes. For QuiltCon, however, I make my schedule weeks in advance where I'm triple-booked on every slot and I have to keep prioritizing, all the while lamenting that it's impossible to take every class I want to take. With that state of mind, it's really easy to overload myself, which is what happened two years ago, and I told myself I wouldn't do it again.

But of course, I did it again. I signed up for 5 classes over 2 days, and I can already feel that I'm going to be very tired by the end of it, but I can't resist the temptation. Here are the classes I'm currently signed up for:

Fill It With Style - Jodi Robinson
Playful Color Theory - Rebecca Bryan
More Than Just Lines - Jodi Robinson
Making Color Work - Heather Black
Serpentine Lines - Angela Walters

I must say registration went much more smoothly than I expected. The only thing that made me anxious was that registration didn't open precisely on the clock, but a few minutes later, but unlike two years ago, I didn't see any system crashes and any mass confusion. I got in and out of there in just a few minutes!

Now it's time to figure out how I'm actually going to get there!

Friday, June 21, 2019

An Evening with Tula

It's not often that I get to be in the same room as a quilting legend. I found out just a few days ago that Tula Pink was visiting my local quilt shop for a lecture and presentation, so of course I booked a ticket right away!

I've very rarely walked into a room and been totally overwhelmed. But seeing Tula's quilts hanging in that room, with all of Angela Walters's amazing quilting, was quite an emotional experience. I've seen almost all of these quilts on social media, but to see them in person, I was totally awed. Speechless. Stunned. All those words.

And in my amazement, I only managed to grab one photo. Seriously, what was I thinking? Right, I was too busy being awed.

I never really understood that much about fabric production. To me, I just take it for granted that somebody designed it, it shows up at the quilt shop and I take it home. But to hear Tula talk about the whole process was absolutely fascinating. There are a lot of fabric designers I like, but watching Tula explain how she works, I really feel like she's on a whole other level. The stories, the presentation, the hidden surprises! I own many of those fabrics and even worked with them and I didn't notice those hidden easter eggs.

I had another engagement after the lecture so I couldn't stay long enough for a photo op with Tula, but I did bring one of my favorite books for her to sign: Quilt with Tula and Angela.

Now that I've got both Angela and Tula's autograph on this book, it is officially my favorite quilting book!

Friday, June 14, 2019

Hex on the Beach ~ One Year Later

Never again. Never again. I kept saying this to my husband as I painstakingly stitched together hexagon after hexagon, in what is a 1000 hexagon quilt. Each time, he reminded me that I said this after my last English Paper Piecing project, and the one before that, and the one before that ...

I fell in love with Hex on the Beach by Tula Pink when I saw pictures of it surface at Quilt Market a year ago. Throughout the past year, this became my road trip project, my quilt guild project, and my waiting room project. It was super portable, and I just loved having something to do with my hands during those times when I can't be at my machine. This is perhaps why I love EPP.

It was during the final assembly process that I really started to burn out. It would have been good for me to work on something else alongside this project, but for some reason I just couldn't divide myself. And so, I put every other project on hold and after many many weeks of stitching hexagon after hexagon and waking up every morning with my thumb joints in pain, it's finally, finally pieced.

I absolutely love it. Tula Pink's solids & pom poms is one of my favorite fabric collection from last year, so I think this quilt which features all the colors so brilliantly laid out is just stunning. But that being said, I'm still not entirely sure it was worth the effort and the injured thumb joints and all the times I pricked my fingers ...

But it's a lovely quilt top, and I'm sure it'll be lovelier still when I finally get around to quilting it, which at the rate I'm going, means possibly never. But I've come to terms with the fact that I might never get around to quilting all my quilts.

And ... surprise surprise, I already have my next English Paper Piecing quilt all lined up. But I probably won't start it for quite awhile. For the next few months, it's going to be all about machine piecing and machine quilting (with a few accessory projects thrown in), and I'm so glad!

Friday, June 7, 2019

Harris Clutch Wallet

I've clearly been on a clutch wallet kick lately, because even though I only made the Day Trip Cell Phone Wallet a month or so ago, I just finished another clutch wallet: the Harris Clutch Wallet by Diane Spencer Ogg.

What made me particularly excited about this wallet is the fabric I used. While auditioning for this, I found some yardage in my collection that I totally forgot about. I've come to the point in my stash where I no longer really know what I have, apparently. (But that's a problem for another day.) I was very excited to see this fabric, and immediately knew it would be perfect.

This wallet won't hold that much, but it holds my phone and my cards, which really is all I need most of the time anyway. It was a very quick make, even though I had to resew some parts because I misunderstood the instructions. I'm pretty happy with it, overall!

Friday, May 31, 2019

Stargazer Block of the Month ~ Months 1 to 4

Well, I'm quite late in posting this. 4 months late to be exact. Toward the end of last year I surveyed the available block of the months starting in 2019, and I decided to join Rebecca Bryan's Stargazer BOM for several reasons: I thought the quilt was absolutely stunning, I was obsessed with star-themed quilts (still am), and I liked that Rebecca provided multiple sample colorways.

I decided to use the Princess colorway, which is a lovely combination of purples and teals. I would never have thought purples and teals went together ... but Rebecca did. And boy was she right. I also decided to go for the 80" x 80" size, because it was going to be same amount of work as the smaller sizes, and I might as well get the biggest quilt I can out of this!

I had planned to start this in January and follow-along with the class, but then I got really distracted with other things in my life and sort of lost my sew-jo for awhile. But in late April, I feel like I got some (most?) of it back, and so I decided it's time to work on this!

Months 1 & 2 were very, very easy. About the only thing I really had to watch out for was that I didn't end up using the wrong fabrics. Although Rebecca taught freezer paper piecing, I still opted to use traditional paper piecing, because that's what I like most.

Month 3 was quite challenging, and took me a few days to crunch through. My points weren't exactly perfect, but they were good enough for me. Month 4 was even easier than months 1 and 2, and once again the only thing I had to look out for was making sure I used the correct fabrics.

Well, I'm almost all caught up, though not quite because Month 5 had become available recently and I haven't gotten to it yet. But hopefully I won't be quite as behind with this project, going forward!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...