Thursday, August 28, 2014

sewvivor sewalong - sweet retreat's little sister

hello again, sew-vivor fans!
here we are at the post for challenge 2: quilted bag.
when this challenge was posted originally, well before i auditioned and such, i thought instantly that it would be my weakest project.  no high hopes or anything for it.  just... blah.
i pinned a billion different ideas, but none of them really wowed me.  i stumbled across the "sweet retreat's little sister" bag pattern while at joann's one day, and decided it would be my project.  i picked out my fabric, and did some of the quilting the night before i left for colorado, and then finished it up while out of state.  turns out, i should have read the instructions a few dozen times before doing anything.  i had to requilt some things, and others were fudged as well.  and the binding... oh was there lots of bias cut binding.  oy!  but it's all finished now, and i had this super cute lorelai just sitting around to model my bag for me.  everything looks better with kidlets, right?
this bag has a whole lotta pockets on it, which makes it even more awesome. one on each side, two on the front, two on the back, and 3 on each side on the inside. i told you... a whole lotta pockets.  and that zipper was fantastically easy to put in.  and it looks great too.  love it.
this bag was a pretty good size,so i'm a little afraid to see what it is the "little sister" of... lisa and i were pretty certain if kent curled up in a ball, he would fit inside quite comfortably.
love those side pockets. although having to sew that curved edge... not so much love.
hugh would have easily fit inside the bag. with a whole lotta room to spare. now on to the solo bag photos, just to get a smidge more of the details while lorelai ran around like a crazy person.
and on a final note...
while this bag turned out better than i envisioned it day one in colorado, i am quite thrilled to be getting back to quilts.  big, flat, rectangular, snuggle up in quilts.  okay, maybe they're not going to be big enough for me to snuggle up in... but at least they won't be bags.
i shouldn't be talking too much trash about this challenge.  it was good for me to do something like this and try something new.  and i keep seeing posts about this weekender bag people have been making... perhaps that will end up on my desires to sew list.  in the meantime here is some info about the bag pattern:
sweet retreat's little sister by whistlepig creek
here is a fantastic tutorial i wish i knew about before i made the bag.  makes everything a whole lot more visual than the itty bitty drawings in the pattern:  tutorial by the designer
how funny.  the designer is from colorado.  it's like it was meant for this bag to be put together at lisa's house.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

colorado via camera phone

8 days in colorado. 8 seems like such a big number, but in reality, the time zoomed by.
it doesn't even feel like i slept on the floor that many nights, or was attacked by hugh puppy that many days either.  it was a great little get away, and it was awful to leave when friday rolled around again and it was time to get back on that plane and go home to california.  here's a little recap of each day, as told by the photos on my phone.
friday i went to bed at basically 1 am or so, and woke up at 345 to pull myself out of bed and head out to the airport.  i had never been on a plane up until this trip, so that was quite an adventure.  security was easy, and i got there just in time to walk to my line and get boarded.  i somewhat dozed off the twoish hours of the flight, and when i landed in denver and wound my way through, there was a kenty and a lisa waiting for me.  we found my bags, headed to get brett from work, and then came back to their apartment.  the boys were left at home, and lisa and i ventured off to get some quilt store viewing out of the way, in case baby came as hoped/desired.  the first store we went to was holly's quilt cabin... and it was fantastic.  so much to look at, and so fantastically organized.  we took our time to cruise the aisles and try to see everything there was to offer.  then we stopped at the quilt shop lisa took her machine to get fixed at, and it was mediocre in comparison.  poor quilt shop just couldn't live up to the cabin expectations.  we came back home after a stop at taco bell, and then i picked lorelai up from the bus stop.  we walked target, and then headed to red robin (yummm) for dinner.  the kids menu had the square dot game on it... and once i taught lorelai how to play, it happened ALL THE TIME that week.
saturday, after a walk around the neighborhood and some french toast, we ventured out to ikea to yet again, walk.  i had never been to an ikea before, and it was quite a sight.  so much to look at.  so much desire to have my own place to decorate now.  after ikea, we went to the quilt cabin (again) and i picked out some fabrics for my intentions for sewvivor challenge #4.  lorelai helped pick out some of them as well, which added to the colorado-esque specialness of the project.  we had a short stop at the mall in denver to check out the american girl store, and a few other stops to make kent & brett not feel overly girl-ed out.  yet.  we came back, and after a bit of relaxing, went for a swim in the pool.  not really much swimming for me.  just soaking.
sunday was church day, and i went with lisa & brett to their ward.  the building was from the 1930s or so, and had an... interesting... mural painted on the chapel wall.  after church we headed back home for lunch, and then there was some chaotic frisbee toss that happened.  lorelai was all about board games this week, and so the two of us and kent played a short game of life before dinner.  oddly, we all ended up with a set of twins in the game.  must be those strong carroll genes.  (in case you forgot, or chose to not know, my dad & lisa's dad are twins)
there was some t-shirt blanket cramping for lorelai & i while we watched the croods that afternoon.  another movie that weekend that i had never seen before (along with the internship & couple's retreat)
cute little movie.  we also played uno roboto that evening, which was an entertaining "enhanced" version of uno.
yes, this is monday.  and yes, that means the third time for visiting the quilt cabin in four days.  we came back because lisa wanted to get some halloween fabrics for a quilt she had in mind.  we also stopped at a few joann's this day (i think... the joann's trips all blur together) but this store photo was taken from the back of the store.  as you can see, it is fantastically deep and full of glorious things.  we prewashed most of our fabrics that day as well, and began to iron them out.  at least one of three times i ironed my fabrics i'm sure.
tuesday we hoped for news that lisa could be induced on thursday, and a baby sighting would happen before i left.  but alas, the hospital was all booked up with scheduled c-sections, so they scheduled her for sunday... two days after i left.  rude.
we consoled ourselves with crafting, got lorelai from the bus and stopped at joann's to get some fusible fleece for me, and a hexagon punch for lisa.  she's restarted working on a grandmother's flower garden quilt and as it turns out, this punch is the perfect size.  we picked brett up from work, and then did some grocery shopping.  hard core grocery shopping at king soopers.  weird name for a grocery store.
wednesday we took a trip to petsmart to get shaggy hugh puppy a trim, and in the meantime lisa got some fish.  got some glue sticks for the hexagon-ing, and then came back to craft some more.  i think this was the day i finished my bag.  it was so frustrating... i was ready to throw it at some points.  but now that i know everything i did wrong, i don't have to repeat those mistakes should i ever choose to make that bag again.  oh.  and the poor fish lasted maybe an hour.  after being acclimated and all that jazz.... dead fish.  took those poor fish carcasses back, picked up a ridiculous looking hugh, and returned to the crafty realm.  lorelai & i played some battleship when she got home from school, and hugh continued his quest to take over my blanket as we watched "don't trust the b---- in apartment 23"
crafting commenced.  i drew out some circles for my challenge 4 project, just to ensure i would have enough of that fat quarter.
thursday was the day before dooms day... aka me leaving.  i wanted to make sure that i documented something in colorado without my camera phone, so i had lorelai model my bag project for me.  and then she wanted to take some photos of it herself.  which then resulted in her climbing in to the bag head first.  you lucky readers, a sneak peek of thursday's post!  well, if you follow me on instagram like you should, you'll have seen a sneak peek or two there as well ;).  and then there was more collapsed hugh on my blanket.   followed by cutting and sewing, in which i got as much of my project together that i could because i ran out of fabric.  bummer, one last trip to the quilt cabin before coming back home.
friday was a sad day.  so sad, the sky was overcast all day.  no complaints from me on that one.  we went to the quilt cabin one last time to pick up some remaining fat quarters for my project, and then stopped at another joann's for some white fabric for lisa's hexagon-o-rama project.  we ate lunch at panda, and then came back home to brainstorm some family reunion ideas for next summer.  we have an awesome quilt idea formulated, and really hope that it can be put in action. 3:30 rolled around, and it was time to head out to the car, load up, and then get lorelai from the bus.  picked her up and then we were off to the airport to say farewell.  i got there around 4:15, and had a chunk of time to kill before my flight boarded at 6:20.  ate lunch at some mexican food place, and then after a bit of airplane watching, it was time to claim my spot.  this time i had an aisle seat toward the back of the plane.  not so much fun.  i think i'd pick an aisle seat up further on my next flight to have less random people rub my arm on the way to the bathroom.  two-ish hours of ed sheeran & the occasional fruit ninja game, i was home.
despite the early roaring wake ups from kidlets followed by hugh puppy attacks, it was a pretty fantastic trip.
also despite the lack of baby that was SUPPOSED to be there...
and it turns out the inducing didn't work... lisa was sent home last night after all attempts failed.
clearly, she's got a super stubborn baby on her hands.
and clearly, i have to figure out another time to hang out in colorado with some of my favorite cousin peeps.
spring break, perhaps?  i guess we'll have to see.

Monday, August 25, 2014

weekend wips

hello readers, and welcome back to the regularly scheduled program!
after 8 days in colorado, it's time to recap where things have gone since the last weekend wips post before i left.  i feel like a lot happened, but not much at the same time.
well.  here we go!
challenge one: done!
challenge two: done! come back thursday to see :)
challenge three: my hexagons are a current work in progress, but they're zooming right along.  i'm finding some of my scraps were too short to reach end to end like desired, so a bit of fudging had to occur.  so far i'm 3 colors down, 2 left to go.  moving right along, considering i only started working on this one saturday night.  not too shabby.
challenge four: this project is the "lap quilt" challenge, and the powers between a fantastic free pattern and a trip to an amazing quilt store while i was in colorado has produced a project i'm very excited about.  lisa and i ventured to holly's quilt cabin the day i landed.  and the day after.  and the monday after.  and the friday i left.  yeah, it was a pretty fantastic store.  lorelai helped me pick the fabric for this quilt, and since i finished my challenge 2 bag project while i was in colorado with time to spare, i started cutting and piecing some of this quilt.  which was good, because i learned that i was short some fabric (hence the fourth trip to the store)
super excited.  i just want to zoom through the hexagons just so i can work on this one some more.
baby girl quilt:
done, photographed, and sent on it's way.
not sure when this one is being delivered, so i'll wait a smidge longer to blog it.
baby boy peterson quilt:
while i kept this one hush hush on the blog posts, i'm sure lisa knew something was up.  i made a baby boy quilt using superman-ish colors, and a fantastic sheet for the backing.  well, words can't describe this quilt really, so you'll have to wait for this post in the coming weeks :)
on a side note, baby boy peterson is HOPEFULLY making his debut sometime today.  little bugger wouldn't come out to see me while i was there.  super rude, little man.  super rude.
quilt block swap:
the furthest i have gotten on this is purchasing some halloween fabric and pre-washing it.  now that school has started (today... ugh) i am certain my crafting speeds will slow down a bit.  no more quilt every two weeks, but these blocks will be done in the next month or so, simply to keep on crafting (and to not get negative feedback for not sending on time.  uck!)  i'll probably attempt to bust these halloween blocks out in the next month, and then move forward from there.  a few blocks involve paper piecing, so deciding on those will be an adventure in itself.

Friday, August 22, 2014

throwback week - my first quilt

while going through my whole "room cleaning" madness (which is still happening... ugh) i managed to locate one thing i had been searching for.  i located the first quilt i had ever made... and when i did, i had quite a good laugh over it.  i remembered it being much more... put together i guess i would say.  i washed it, just to freshen it up before i photographed it, and i'm not so sure if that helped at all.  it's a little wonky, there is a giant hole in the side where the seam split, and the blocks are all over the place...
but i still love it.

the fabric is adorable... i just love those little piggies.
and i feel like this is something i would want my kid to try and do when they're 7 or 8 or however old i was when i made it.  i have to say, it's quite an accomplishment for someone at that age, and i'm sure that's why i'm proud of it... and why i kept it around so long.  in all it's lopsided glory, it is absolutely one of a kind :)
happy friday everyone!
i'm headed back home today, so i'll catch you on the flip side!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

throwback week - t-shirt quilts

here we are, with the collection of t-shirt quilts i scrounged up.
granted there are a few more that i didn't even post on craftster (including the most recent one i made myself) so here is the handful to suffice.  there really isn't much to say about each one of these, so they'll be less words, more photos.
this one for aileen was made using wonder under and coordinating fabric prints to sandwich the t-shirts to. since her shirts were smaller, it was hard to get them all to be the same decent size, so this is how we improvised.
i had the crazy idea to do a double sided one for ben when he got his first t-shirt quilt. i kept the same layout for both sides, but switched up the thomas the tank engine fabric. remember... ben is my age. and this was made for him as an adult. that's how we roll in this house.
i didn't have enough blocks for this one for my uncle barry, so i added red fabric pieces in between, as well as hand painted two of the blocks myself. hand painted meaning tracing & filling in. no way did i free style those!
lastly, these are two of the three t-shirt quilts i made for myself.  the one on the left is the one that started all the madness.  every other block is hand painted in one way or another, and the rest are shirts i generally wore during zero period all four years of high school.  including some that i swiped from joshua over the years.  the quilt on the right is a collection of dance t-shirts my aunt bought for me over the years, and i decided to create this mini t-shirt quilt with a dance theme to it.  the back has a daisy kingdom ballet shoe print, and yes... that ballet bear is cross stitched on there as well :)
i've got one more throwback trick up my sleeve.  come back on friday!

Monday, August 18, 2014

throwback week - craftster finds

since i'm out of state this week and have no access to my computer programs to create the regularly occurring posts, i've decided to make this week a sort of "throwback week" to quilts that happened pre-blogging.  after digging through the archives and finding a few gems here and there (not quite all the ones i was thinking to find... but maybe at a later time i will) i really got quite a self esteem boost about the journey my quilting has taken.  haha.  i'm not knocking myself for these projects... because clearly i had some form of ambition at the time to do these the way i did.  so for day one, here's a few of the projects i was able to pull from my craftster posts from 2006 onward.
i did this quilt pattern a few times.  the one in pink & black i made for a random coworker at picture people (boy was i nice...) and the pastel-ish one i made for a gal that was at my dance studio years ago.  as the chain of events would happen, i even had the chance of teaching the little girl i made that quilt for while they were back in the area as her dad was deployed with the military.
this quilt was made what feels like forever ago for my cousin desi who was quite the dinosaur enthusiast at the time.  just a basic rail fence made with this super cute dinosaur print, sandwiched to the back which was a piece of fleece with the same dinosaur print on it, but larger.  one of those times that joann's was a total winner with cute boy related prints that weren't too goofy.
these two are probably my least favorite of this "throw back" bunch.  the nemo one was made for a disney swap.  the idea was cute, but now it just looks so... lame.  that tiny square in the middle and then border after border?  oh well.  it was my own idea at the time, so can't complain too much.
and the one on the right... ugh.  never again will i make a boyfriend a quilt until he likes me enough to put a ring on my finger.  granted, this one is dull and boring, and the back is actually a grungy old sheet that my mom was going to toss out anyways.  ha.  almost 8 years ago that quilt was made.
this one was for another old coworker (super nice emily, right?) that i made for her birthday.  i found the vintage snow white sheet online, and then purchased the fabric to best coordinate the colors on the back.  instead of tying or quilting this quilt, i think i actually put buttons in the middle of each block.  another odd emily idea, that's for sure.
and this last one i think has shown up here before (maybe not...) but it's a good one.  made for yet ANOTHER coworker (haha.  just kidding.  bff for 10+ years now) for high school graduation.  i love the concept of the quilt, but would execute it better if i ever chose to do a photo quilt again.  the part that bothers me most is the middle square in comparison to the border that i way calculated out.  and you can't really see it, but there was some weird "quilting" done between the middle and the photo border.  the bummer about this kind of quilt, is i really don't know how well it can be washed due to the photo transfer... but it sure looks cool.
come back on wednesday for the collection of t-shirt quilts i scrounged up!

Friday, August 15, 2014

the color run 2014

just about two weeks ago, as mentioned in a weekend wips post, as well show in week 31 of my 365 project, i participated in my first 5k.  yep.  my coworker adrienne convinced me to sign up for the color run.  something with run in the title.  it wasn't bad at all.  actually, it was quite a bit of fun.  adrienne told me she planned to wear a tutu for the event, and so that week i made my own "no sew tutu" for the event.  despite "run" being in the title, i jogged a bit, but we mostly walked it.  i would absolutely do it again, and hope that next year we can get a bit bigger of a team.  just for fun :) now for the gloriously messy photos from the day!
looking fresh and clean didn't last too long at all. here's the comparison between the starting line and the finish line... no joke
what once was white, was now shades of blue, purple, green and more
my tutu retained quite a bit of color powder, that's for certain. but it did survive the wash as well. so now it's safe for storage for next year
i made a headband out of some of the hundreds of scraps i still have... for kicks, here is the before & after emily face comparison.
after the festivties and color throw, we ate brunch at pizza rock & visited one of our old operations managers at the new 5 story calfit right next door. we might have left a trail of powder, that's for sure.  when i got home, and after attempted to shower the color off (i was still blue for 2 days) i made sure to get the front & back of my shirt immortalized before i washed that beast.  gotta love the blotch on the back from where my backpack was!
now that the color run is over, adrienne is now trying to get me to do a half marathon with her in march. oy!  but seriously... i know back in april when i had my work out goal of every week day that month that i mentioned doing a half marathon in disneyland... but maybe this could be the first step towards that crazy idea.  we initially talked about doing the run to feed the hungry on thanksgiving, which is a 5k, so perhaps i'll get my regular work out going again once i'm home from colorado and get in shape from that and then go from there.  i'm a fast walker, so that helps a bit as well... ha.  so i guess we'll see if i feel comfortable with the idea of "running" 13.1 miles.  the plus side so far, is that it is in march, and not august.  that's it.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

sewvivor sewalong - fun with flags

the first of four sewvivor sewalong posts is finally here!
when sew-vivor was announced, and the challenges were listed... i was at a loss when it came to nautical.  nothing inspired me.  i didn't want to do sailboats or anchors... because really... what would i do with said quilt after i was done with it?  (happy birthday, baby boy peterson 2.0 perhaps?)  i wandered fabric stores, hoping inspiration would strike... but nothing.  not until i saw a collection of fabric at beverley's titled "bartholo-meow's reef" and loved the subtle nautical-ness of it.  (really... i didn't notice the "meow" part of the title until after i had bought the fabric and went back to get the background print...  ha).  i saw the fabric, but had no clue what to do with it.  i thought hard over what nautical would come to mind, and all that i could think of was a nod to the big bang theory.  sheldon's fun with flags came to mind, so i took the idea and ran with it.  i came across this great tutorial from film in the fridge simply titled "scrappy triangles" that fit the vision perfectly.  let's start off with a little behind the scenes action.
first off, the fabric selection from bartholo-meow's reef.  i picked the prints that were more subtle, but would work well in a scrappy layout without being too busy.  initially i was trying to decide on one of the anchor prints or the other.  but after much surveying (including my sister saying she was useless because she doesn't quilt) it was decided on both anchors to be used, but in separate flags.  i don't think the brown fabric is from the same collection, but it was shelved with the fabric.  i was originally going to go with a solid white or blue, but i'm glad i stumbled across this wood looking fabric to use.  gives it more of a boat-like feel i guess.
i busted the top out quite quickly, and then had to figure out the back.  i almost used the white that i originally purchased for the front, but wasn't in love with it.  i went back to my room to see what i had and sitting on top of my final tub that has yet to be organized, i had a giant blue sheet that perfectly matched the light blue anchors.  i instagrammed a photo of the pinning process, and apparently people were impressed by my over kill of safety pins.  i have a fear of the back shifting... the more pins, the better?  it looks pretty crazy, that's for sure.  and now, on to the final detail photos!
from the original layout, i decided to keep all my flags pointing in the same direction and slightly off set every other row.  this resulted in some rows having 4 full flags, others having 3 flags and 2 halves.  i am quite pleased with the result of it!  to me, it looks like they are really hanging pennants in a row.
the quilting... i am SO THRILLED with this too.  i didn't want to ruin the individuality of each flag, but i also didn't want it to be too blah when you look at it.  i decided to stitch in the ditch around the outside of each flag, and then do a 1" cross hatch following the same angle inside the brown parts.  i am so glad i went with a solid quilting thread instead of the usual variegated threads that i use in my quilts.  it feels much crisper to me, and doesn't detract from the quilt in any way.
the binding i created from that same giant blue sheet i found in my room.  i cut off a few strips, sewed it together, and did the hand sewing in what felt like record time.  probably because it was such a tiny quilt in comparison to others i have done.  i almost didn't "tag" this quilt, because i didn't want to cover the quilting i'm so amazed i pulled off. but to keep with tradition, i placed the tag for this one in the top corner. since i have 10,000 of these tags, i might as well! (ok... maybe not 10,000... but the more i clean & organize my room, the more i find!)
and there you have it folks!
i am super pleased with this quilt.  it only has a few flaws i wish would go away, but that gives it that little bit of charm that most of my quilt have.  i plan to knock out my bag this upcoming week in colorado, so i hope to have that for you to see soon enough :)