Sunday Stash {5/22/2016}

Last week, Sandra @mmmquilts pointed out that Craftsy had a good sale going on Aurifil thread. I tried to resist… but then as I was working earlier this week, I noticed that I was almost out of my go to piecing thread: 50wt Aurifil 2600 (Dove). Figuring the sale was over, I went to check… and ended up buying 6 large spools of 50wt thread. I mean, I had to justify the shipping cost, right?

Aurifil

Aurifil

Left to Right: Dove (2600), Silver White (2309), Dove (2600), Green (2870), Dark Cobalt (2740), and Eggplant (4225).

Aurifil

Aurifil

Once I was committed to buying the Aurifil, I was a bit sad I hadn’t ordered sooner and missed out on some of the colors that were already sold out.

Aurifil Pyramid

Aurifil Pyramid

Sandra is a dangerous enabler. 🙂 Linking up with Sunday Stash.

Crafted Applique Book Tour & Giveaway

I have said it before, but it is worth repeating: I blog because of the wonderful community of quilters online helps me make connections and grow as an individual and as a quilter. Today is a case in point: if I were to only be a modern quilt guild member, I probably would never have had the wonderful opportunity to get to know Lara @Buzzin Bumble or be introduced to her awesome raw edge applique method that she presents in her new book, Crafted AppliquĂ©. When Lara reached out to me to see if I would be interested in trying her technique and blogging about it, I had absolutely no hesitation. AppliquĂ© has never been one of my strong skills as a quilter, and I was eager to learn more and improve my skills. Let me tell you, Lara’s method does not disappoint and I am excited by the possibilities that her method opens up for me creatively.

Crafted Applique

When I received the book from Lara, I eagerly sat down and read about her method. She does a fantastic job explaining her technique, but what I truly appreciate (and what appealed to my nerdy technical side) was her side by side comparison of her method to other raw edge appliquĂ© methods; methods I had used in the past. As I was going through the comparisons, I could see the areas I struggled with using applique methods in the past and it made me giddy excited to have a try with her method. No fray? I couldn’t wait to try! Crafted AppliquĂ© contains 7 different projects within the book, but I was itching to use the rest of my Celestial Lights palette (the other half was used for The Humans Are Dead).

Once I had the fabric for my project selected, then I had to figure out what I was going to do with them. I brainstormed for a bit, and hit upon the idea of layering orange peel shapes to create an ombre design. I found the perfect set of Orange Peel Block templates on Craftsy from Caroline @Sew Can She, and I was off and running.

Purple Passion

Purple Passion

Almost as soon as I made up my mind what I would be making, I knew that this mini quilt belonged with my friend Jess @Quilty Habit. And as luck would have it, last Sunday I had the pleasure of going to lunch with a group of friends, and I thought that the wall behind our table was a perfect location to hang and photograph this mini quilt.

Purple Passion

Purple Passion

Let’s talk details, yes? I used all three sizes of the orange peel template and layered the shapes onto my chosen background. And then I started quilting. Yup, I did not top stitch down the shapes prior to quilting… and they stayed put. Even better, in the very center of the quilt there is a lot of fabric bulk, and the shapes did not shift or gather.

Purple Passion

Purple Passion

To be fair, the first thing I did was to secure each applique shape via quilting, starting with the white, small orange peel shapes and working my way out from the center of the quilt. Then I went back and added the echo quilting within each orange peel. Look at those raw edge appliqué edges! I spent about 8 hours quilting this mini quilt on my domestic machine, turning it this way and that; scrunching it up to fit, and the edges still look like I have just cut them.

Purple Passion

Purple Passion

Channeling my inner Renee @Quilts of a Feather (I was inspired by her Bat Falcon quilt), I marked a 1/2-inch grid on the background and finished the quilting with more orange peels. As you might be able to see in this photo, while I did my best to avoid the edges of the appliqué as I worked on the orange peels, I would occasionally dip into the raw edge. But the method held up: there is no fraying.

Purple Passion - Backing

Purple Passion – Backing

For the quilting, I used 50wt Aurifil 4030 (Plum) and I really love how its slightly more magenta than true purple tone works with the fabric in this mini quilt. And using a solid for the quilt backing really is a fun way to see how the quilting shines.

Purple Passion - Quilting Detail

Purple Passion – Quilting Detail

I am really thrilled with Lara’s raw edge appliquĂ© method, and I know I will be using it again in the future!

Crafted Appliqué Giveaway

Lara is offering a copy of her book to one lucky reader! Use the Rafflecopter entry below to enter to win. The giveaway closes on Thursday, May 26th. If you just can’t wait and want to buy a copy of the book right now, have no fear – Lara has offered to refund your money if you win a copy in one of the giveaways! You can purchase a signed copy on BuzzinBumble, or buy it from the AQS shop or through Amazon (all non-affiliate links). *Note that Amazon was sold out of the book but should be back in stock today!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you want more opportunities to win a copy of Lara’s book, or if you want to get other points of view on Crafted AppliquĂ©, the full blog hop schedule is below.

Crafted Appliqué: New Possibilities Blog Hop 

Sunday, May 1 – Introduce the Hop – Lara Buccella- BuzzinBumble
Monday, May 2 – Valerie Smith – Pumpkin Patch Quilter
Tuesday, May 3 – Dana Gaffney – Stormy Days
Wednesday, May 4 – Lorna McMahon – Sew Fresh Quilts
Thursday, May 5 – Mary S. – Needled Mom
Friday, May 6 – Heidi Kuntz – Red Letter Quilts
Saturday, May 7 – Alycia Carmin – Alycia Quilts
Sunday, May 8 – Amy DeCesare – Amy Made That
Monday, May 9 – Sherri McConnell – A Quilting Life
Tuesday, May 10 – Lara Buccella – Sew Mama Sew
Wednesday, May 11 – Christina Cameli – A Few Scraps
Thursday, May 12 – Melissa Corry –  Happy Quilting
Friday, May 13 – Sarah Craig – Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Saturday, May 14 – Soma Acharya – Whims and Fancies
Sunday, May 15 – Val Reynolds –  Val’s Quilting Studio
Monday, May 16 – Angela Pingel – Cut to Pieces

Tuesday, May 17 – Sandra Walker – Musings of a Menopausal Melon
Wednesday, May 18 – Cheryl Brickey – Meadow Mist Designs
Thursday, May 19 – Judy Murphy – Quilt Paradigm
Friday, May 20 – Yvonne Fuchs – Quilting Jetgirl
Saturday, May 21 – Cindy Pieters – Stitchin’ at Home
Sunday, May 22 – Susie Zlogar – Susie’s Sunroom
Monday, May 23 – Connie Kresin-Campbell – Freemotion by the River
Tuesday, May 24 – Ruth Bourke – Charly & Ben’s Crafty Corner
Wednesday, May 25 – Kaja Zieslar – Sew Slowly
Thursday, May 26 – Ann Brooks – Fret Not Yourself
Friday, May 27 – Cynthia Brunz – Quilting is More Fun Than Housework
Tuesday, May 31 – Jenn Trott-Zisserson – Quarter Inch From the Edge
Wednesday, June 1 – Paulette Horn – The Way I Sew It
Thursday, June 2 – Sandra Jansen – Studio Sew of Course
Friday, June 3 – Christine Sherman – Triangles and Squares
Saturday, June 4 – Darlene Simmons – Quilt Shop Gal
Sunday, June 5 – Announce BuzzinBumble Giveaway Winners – Lara Buccella

Linking up with Finish it Friday, Can I Get a Whoop Whoop, and TGIFF.

Disclosure: This book was provided for review by the author. All opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by the businesses involved.

Paper Piecing Tools

I have a big run of “secret sewing” projects lined up through the end of June, and that is really unusual for me. Typically I have a project I need to keep secret every so often, but this is a rather long list. Thankfully I get to share one with you tomorrow, and in early June and then as June rolls into July I will have lots of fun things to tell you about. I can give a bit of a tease on a swap item I am working on today, though.

The challenge with this swap is to use V and Co Ombre Fabric. I realized that having fabric and deciding on a design is harder for me than having a design and selecting fabric with this challenge! After a lot of debate, I made another May is for Makers purchase and bought Jeli Quilts’ Double Goosed pattern.

First Quadrant

First Quadrant

Not wanting to give too much away, above is a grey scale image of the first pieced quadrant.

Prep for Last Quadrant

Prep for Last Quadrant

The pattern is paper pieced, and I really like how doing something repeatedly can leads to efficiency. The above is my fabric prep for piecing the last quadrant. I did not have much waste!

Paper Piecing Tools

Paper Piecing Tools

Which lead to me posting about the tools I use when paper piecing on Instagram yesterday. I keep handy:

  1. A ruler with an obvious quarter inch at the edge for trimming,
  2. 2 rotary cutters: 1 for fabric, 1 for paper (2 scissors for that matter: 1 for fabric, 1 for paper), and
  3. Wooden seam roller for pressing seams.

I really like not having to plug in and use an iron when I am paper piecing. Something about using the wooden seam roller is just fun for me.

I also got some really great suggestions for other tools that I might check out in the future:

  • @mara.creates: I also use a sewline glue stick for putting the first fabric down and I love my clover clips to hold fabric in place instead of pins.
  • @a.fox.made.this: I use a tracing wheel to pre-perforate all the lines. I find it makes turning the paper back to trim seams easier and more accurate as well as being easier to tear away at the end.
  • @liveacolorfullife: I keep a postcard handy to fold the paper back on the line for trimming. If that makes sense. Someone recommended template plastic for that–more durable
  • Irene @Patchwork and Pastry: My metal stiletto – I use it to score paper, guide small things through my sewing machine, and a host of other things

And others mentioned that a quick place to get a wooden seam roller might be at your local hardware store in the wallpaper section: a wallpaper seam sealer!

What are your must have paper piecing tools?

**The Modern Selvage Quilting giveaway is over. Congratulations to Christi S.**

Linking up with Let’s Bee Social.

May is for Makers – Week 3

Spinning by Beth @Cooking Up Quilts

Spinning by Beth @Cooking Up Quilts

It has been a lot of fun seeing the May is for Makers wave work around social media. This week, I am excited to show my support for Beth @Cooking Up Quilts by my purchase of her recent pattern, Spinning. Beth hosts a weekly link up, Main Crush Monday, and you can bet that I’ll be linking up to share my crush on her wonderful work this week. 🙂

I met Beth in 2014 when we both participated in the New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop. I was immediately drawn to Beth; she lives in West Virginia (I was born in West Virginia!), and she is kind and easy to have conversations with via email. Thanks for being a friend, Beth, and for what you add to the quilting community.

Peach + Coral Challenge

Yesterday, Michelle @Factotum of Arts posted about Peach + Coral as part of her yearly colour blog series. She issued a challenge in the post that I am eager to participate in:

Monthly Challenge

This challenge is a mini research project, and hopefully expanding your inspiration focus. Find an artist (fine arts – oil, printing, painting, drawing) who uses peaches and corals in their work.  What other colors do they use with this color palette? Now try to recreate this color palette using your own prints and/or solids. Next week, I will provide you a link-up in the guest post introduction, to add your fabric pull with description of the artist (and link) to the pieces of work you were inspired by.

The prize this month is a 6 piece peach and coral bundle from Art Gallery Fabrics and a $20 Gift card from the Fat Quarter Shop. Winner will be announced in next month’s first post.

With nothing other than curiosity in mind, I spent some time yesterday afternoon with Google Image search and enjoyed getting to browse art with intention.

For my artist and artwork, I selected Marcia Baldwin; I was particularly drawn to her equine art and the way she uses peach and coral so effectively in her work. She is particularly drawn to oil paintings. It was also fascinating to read more about Marcia’s journey and creative arc. I think it likely many of us can relate to her journey.

My Life ~ My Passion ~ My Art by Marcia Baldwin

Art has always been a passion of mine. I knew from a very early age that art was going to be a strong influence in my life and that I wanted to know as much about art as I could possibly learn. I still strive to learn something new every day. It takes practice and patience to be a full time artist and I am finally able to devote one hundred percent of my professional life to my studio work.

After many years working in and around art, making a living as an advertising designer, art teacher, art consultant, photographic artisan and many other niches, I finally opened my art studio to the dedication of purely fine art. I am a trained artist, receiving a BFA and a MFA in the seventies and eighties, respectively. I loved the years I put forth to formal art training. It is invigorating to be around people with that same passion to learning and exploring the creative and problem solving side of your personality. The people who share this passion greatly influence your thought patterns about your art work. It is really great to see the different outcomes from the various people when working on a creative project. We are all looking at the same thing, painting or sculpting or drawing, but each individual will see it a little different and the creation of beautiful works, each individually unique. It is truly amazing.

Fine Art Palette

Fine Art Palette

Above is my fabric pull and take on the Fine Art Palette challenge. I am sure that what Marcia says is very true: if someone else were to create a palette from their stash based on the images, it would be fascinating to see the differences.

Fine Art Palette

Fine Art Palette

The one solid in the grouping is Cloud9 Cirrus Solid in Coral. I ranged the palette from a dark tangerine to light pink in the “Peach + Coral” range and added in yellow and teal as they seemed to be the predominant other colors Marcia used in the paintings I chose as inspiration.

Thank you so much for the fun challenge, Michelle. Linking up with Sunday Stash; while I shopped my stash this week, I’m eager to see what everyone else has been up to. And I’ll be linking up with the Peach + Coral Monthly Challenge.