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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Simple and Sweet, Winners, and NTT

Happy Needle and Thread Thursday!  This is my wild thing's very last week of elementary school, and it is bittersweet.  I can't believe he's heading to middle school in just two short months!  May is always jam-packed with activities, but it seems that there are even more since it is his last elementary year.  Sometimes in the middle of the madness, it helps to just sew something simple, and this quilt, made with Strawberry Fields leftovers from my Strawberry Season quilt was just what the doctor ordered.


I had enough leftovers to create this baby quilt, measuring 40" x 45", including plenty of fabric for the binding and most of the backing.  I did pull the green print from stash, but I think it blends nicely.


I am calling this one Berry Picking, and it is such a sweet little finish.  The thing that makes me the happiest with this quilt though, is the binding.  Y'all know I'm a machine binder all the way, and lately I've been playing around with a different method of attaching binding with a combination of my lap seam foot (Bernina foot #71) and my walking foot.  There is a tutorial for using this foot for binding HERE, but as written, that method just didn't work for me.  I've made so many modifications to the tutorial that it's not really the same, so I almost didn't even reference it, but that tutorial is the whole reason why I purchased this particular foot to begin with.  So, maybe you'll have better luck if you want to give it a try.

So, usually I pull my binding to the front past the first seam, which creates a seam on the back that runs beside the back binding like this-


Instead, lately I've been adjusting my binding strip width and needle placement so that I have a regular seam on BOTH the front and back of the binding.  I really like the clean, professional look of having a uniform seam on both sides of the binding.  I'm still perfecting it, but this is my most successful attempt thus far.  When I get it worked out perfectly, I'll let you know!


So, before we get to last week's highlights, I have some winners to announce!  The prizes this month were amazing, and I really wasn't kidding when I said that I am a teensy bit jealous that I couldn't win them myself!  As always, the winners were drawn in the order that the prizes appeared in the blog post.  The winner of the drool-worthy Turn Up the Volume bundle from Fat Quarter Shop is comment number 143, Deborah!




The winner of the drool-worthy Turn Up the Volume bundle from Fat Quarter Shop is comment number 143, Deborah!












Comment number 80, GranChris is the winner of the Flower Sugar Holiday bundle, sponsored by Fort Worth Fabric Studio- lucky lady!












Next up is the winner of the $25 gift certificate to LouLou's Fabric Shop.  The winner is Jean, with comment number 103.  I know you'll have a blast spending that, Jean!









And last, but certainly not least, comment number 50, Linda, is the winner of the beautiful low volume bundle of Little Ruby fabrics.






Congratulations to all four of the winners.  I'll be contacting you lucky ladies ASAP to get information from you so that you can get your goodies!

Okay, time to get down to business with the utterly amazing highlights from last week's party!  Ruth at Charly & Ben's Crafty Corner linked up this adorable ticker tape silhouette quilt- and she shared the process!  So cool!


This Ruby granny square beauty is by Jennie at Porch Swing Quilts and it is just lovely!


and this pretty quilt is by Amanda at The Cozy Pumpkin, for her daughter's teacher.  I know she'll treasure it.


Are you ready for some fresh inspiration this week?  Let's party!

**NTT will be taking a vacation next week, so we'll party next on June 8th.  See you then!

1.  You can link finished projects or WIP's , but just keep it about quilting and sewing!
2. Link to your specific post (not to your home page!) to make it easier for others.
3. Please remember to spread the word and post my button or a text link.  
4. Spread the comment love far and wide!
5. Following me is not a requirement to link, but is so very appreciated!

*If you're new to the party, here's a helpful tip for linking up- select "Auto Crop"  when selecting your thumbnail photo.  For some reason, trying to crop your own image results in the dreaded "white question mark box," and we definitely want to see your awesome work!  :)



Sunday, May 22, 2016

It's Not Easy...Being Green

Pardon me while I date myself as a child of the 80's with Kermit the Frog's signature song.  Despite the fact that I haven't heard it in over three decades, as I worked on this quilt, that song kept working its way into my mind.  I'm okay with it, though.  I'll gladly own up to my love for the Muppets!


I am so pleased with the way this quilt turned out.  I was able to fit 34 different greens (all from stash) into this quilt, and they play so nicely all together.  I love how green, depending on the specific shade, can be earthy or opulent, soothing or energizing, soft and sweet, or loud and brash.  I guess lots of colors run the gamut of emotion like that, but I notice it more so with greens because they are my favorite.


I just had one little hiccup in getting this one finished.  Someone in my guild was destashing her thread, and I got a whole cone of Superior Threads King Tut variegated green thread. I intended to use it for piecing and quilting, and the piecing went off without a hitch, but when it came to quilting, my machine just wasn't having it.

I have never used a thread stand, since I usually just use regular spools that fit my Bernina.  I put the cone in a mason jar behind my machine and that worked well for piecing.  Not so much for the quilting part though.  It was late at night, and I couldn't get the thread to feed through my machine with correct tension for free motion.  Instead of being patient (shocking, I know), I gave up and quilted it with white Aurifil instead.  I was just tired of ripping quilting stitches.   Even still, I do love it quilted in white.


In trying to make the thread cone work, I was doing a little research and realized what a great deal the larger cones are.  I had no idea!  Note to self- buy a thread stand ASAP, and start taking advantage of those thread cone savings!

On the back, I used up as many scraps as possible, though with 34 prints, some had to go back into my cabinet for another day.


I opted for a solid green Kona Clover binding, and DID use the variegated green thread to stitch that.


I honestly don't know that I love any other colors enough to make a monochromatic quilt from them (aqua/teal is probably a close second).  What about you?  Have you ever considered (or made) a monochromatic quilt?


Friday, May 20, 2016

Kaleidoscope Star Pattern!

Hooray!  My Kaleidoscope Star pattern is finished and available in my Craftsy and Etsy shops!  I did something with this pattern that I've never done before.  I've written the pattern with two different construction methods.  So, you can choose whether you want to construct the corner units with HST's or with snowballs- whichever is most comfortable for you!

  

The pattern is written in lap, twin, and queen sizes, and no matter which method you choose, you can't go wrong.  I've included cutting diagrams, as well as detailed instructions, and full-color illustrations for almost every step!


The curvy kaleidoscope design has great wow factor, but is created with traditional straight piecing.  The only special tool required is a triangle-in-a-square ruler set.  There are a few brands available, and any of them will work.


I'm going to be honest, I chose this set because it already had holes for hanging and I wouldn't need to get my hubby to drill them.  The sets are all pretty inexpensive and easy to find.  I got mine from JoAnn for about $10.  Just be sure that whatever set you choose has BOTH the main triangle ruler, as well as the smaller ruler for the side pieces.  That's essential for turning that triangle into a square block.

This is such a fun quilt, and the blocks make really cool secondary patterns when they're all put together.  Check it out!




Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Needle and Thread Thursday, Friends!

Happy NTT!  Before we get into this week's party, be sure you enter the four awesome giveaways provided by my ultra-generous sponsors.  One comment enters you for all four prizes, so it's not too time consuming.  You can do that right HERE!

In my continued effort to reduce my stash, I've been taking stock of each color to see where things are a bit thick, and going from there.  I'll bet if I gave you a single guess, you might be able to figure out which color was by far the most abundant in my cabinet.


Yep, greens of course!  Chartreuse, apple, lime, grass, emerald, jade, and kelly...I love all shades of green from the warmest to coolest, and had amassed quite an extensive collection.  This quilt contains 34(!) different green prints, and I wasn't even able to use every one in my cabinet.  I have to give a shout out to Janet at Simply Pieced for the pattern suggestion.  I knew I wanted to make a monochromatic green quilt without a background fabric, and she thought that a plus pattern would allow each fabric to be distinct within the quilt.  She was absolutely right, and I am loving it!

Last week's party had so many fantastic projects!  Katy Quilts shared this amazing throwback that she made in 2007.  Wow, it's just gorgeous!


Porch Swing Quilts finished this pretty kaleidoscope quilt.  Check out the adorable little strawberries on the corners!


and this beauty is from Myra at Busy Hands Quilts!


Okay then, friends!  Time to show off the latest happenings in your studio!

1.  You can link finished projects or WIP's , but just keep it about quilting and sewing!
2. Link to your specific post (not to your home page!) to make it easier for others.
3. Please remember to spread the word and post my button or a text link.  
4. Spread the comment love far and wide!
5. Following me is not a requirement to link, but is so very appreciated!

*If you're new to the party, here's a helpful tip for linking up- select "Auto Crop"  when selecting your thumbnail photo.  For some reason, trying to crop your own image results in the dreaded "white question mark box," and we definitely want to see your awesome work!  :)


May Sponsor News and FOUR Giveaways!

Whoop, whoop!  The end of the school year is almost here, and although I'm a little sad that my son's elementary school years are coming to a close, I am really looking forward to having him home for the lazy days of summer.  Anticipating the freedom of summer makes me so happy. Lots of awesomeness is happening at my favorite shops as well!  There are tons of great sales and new arrivals, and I can't wait to share them with you.  If you're not quite feeling the buoyancy of the upcoming summer, these deals and giveaways are sure to boost your mood.

So, let's kick off this month's post with the first of four giveaways, shall we?  The first one is a doozie, and I'm pretty jealous that I can't win it myself!

Fat Quarter Shop is offering this amazing Turn Up the Volume bundle to one lucky reader.  These colors are right in my wheelhouse.  I just love all of those luscious brights!

Fat Quarter Shop also has plenty of other great news to share.  Did you know that each and every month, they offer 20% off of a basic, notion, book, and pattern?  They call them their monthly picks, and they're always amazing.  For example, in May, the basic of the month is Pearl Bracelets fabrics, and the notion of the month is the Olfa Splash rotary cutter.  You can't beat 20% off on these essentials!


      Fat Quarter Shop

Fat Quarter Shop also has two newly released books to help you put some of your fabric goodies to good use.  Pretty Playtime quilts, and one of my personal favorites, Holiday Wishes.  Amazingly, the time for thinking about holiday sewing is just about upon us, and this book has some super cute ideas!

              


Five Monkey Fabrics has lots of fun fabrics that are tough find anywhere else.  It's my favorite go-to shop for basics like chevrons, polkadots, and cute children's fabrics.  They have coordinated bundles as well!  Another great thing about Five Monkey Fabrics is that they accommodate custom orders  If you need larger or smaller quantities of certain fabrics, just ask and they will hook you up!

                

Five Monkey Fabrics is generously offering a coupon exclusive for my readers for 15% off of you entire purchase, including clearance items!  Just use the code MQI15 to take advantage of this great offer.

                      Five Monkey Fabrics






Ready for another giveaway?  Let's do it!  Fort Worth Fabric Studio is sponsoring the second giveaway of the day with this adorable 6-piece fat quarter bundle of Flower Sugar Holiday.  Oh, so cute, and the perfect little bundle for kickstarting those aforementioned holiday projects!

                   




If you need to get into a beachy state of mind, the Seaside Wonders collection can certainly help you out!  Right now, this entire line is 40% off with the code SEASIDE40. It's only through May 24th though, so get it while it lasts.


           Fort Worth Fabric Studio





Shabby Fabrics is unveiling something new and exciting, a new club called A Year in Words.  This is a pillow club and each design is so cute!

         Shabby Fabrics

I'm not the kind of person who decorates my entire home for every single season, but I do like to add a touch of seasonal decor here and there.  These pillows would be perfect!   Best of all, the hard part is done for you.  Each appliqué letter and shape is pre-fused and laser cut. All you have to do is peel off the backing paper, iron in place, and stitch around to secure it.  Fun and easy!  Check out all of the details HERE to sign up!


If you've been a reader of my blog for any length of time, you know how much I love my custom quilt labels from Finer Ribbon.  If you're a newer reader, allow me to enlighten you!  I absolutely LOVE my ribbon labels, and I think they add such a professional touch to my quilts.


FinerRibbon






The sales and design team at Finer Ribbon are extremely helpful in ensuring that your labels reflect your own creative vision.  They can add any font or logo you desire, and they even send a full-scale proof that can be printed and cut out, so you can see exactly how your labels will look before printing.

The labels themselves are top-notch quality.  They are printed with ink that won't bleed or fade, and they stay soft even through washing.  The spool has 1000 labels on it- enough to last for a looooong time!  That works out to about 10 cents per label.  Check it out!







Sponsoring the third giveaway is LouLou's Fabric Shop!  LouLou's is generously offering a $25 gift certificate to their shop to spend however you choose. When it comes to buying fabric, it seems I'm never stumped on what to buy.  My list always seems a little too long, but if you're like a kid in a candy store who can't decide, LouLou's has some brand new arrivals that are awfully tempting!

LouLou’s Fabric Shop




The latest to arrive in the shop are Pixie Noel, Cozy Christmas, Under the Christmas Tree, Cookie Exchange, and Little Ruby, just to name a few!  Their preorder section is gigantic as well, and includes Birch Fabrics organic Farm Fresh collection.  Love!


I am delighted to let you know that LouLou's is also sponsoring a coupon exclusive to my readers.  Through Sunday, 5/22, just use the code myquiltinfatuation at checkout to receive 10% off of your order.


    
    

Last, but certainly not least is Lady Belle Fabric.  Lady Belle has a fantastic selection of bundles and yardage, but by far, my favorites have to be Cotton and Steel's Macrame, and Little Ruby by Bonnie and Camille.



Lady Belle Fabric





And speaking of Little Ruby, Lady Belle is graciously sponsoring our final giveaway of the month with the sweet fat quarter bundle of low volume prints from the Little Ruby collection.  Aren't they sweet?






Wow!  There is so much fabulousness going on right now!  I can't wait to take advantage of it.  So, I know you're wondering how to enter the giveaways, right?  Well, just leave a comment on this post letting me know if you have any special plans for the summer when school is out!  One comment enters you in all FOUR giveaways!

Remember to leave an email address if you're a no-reply blogger, and only one entry per person please!  Unfortunately, replies to your own comment counts as an entry (the system numbers those, too), so remember to put your email address in your comment.  Additional replies/comments/entries are always deleted.  I'll announce a winner at next week's NTT!

This giveaway has now ended.  I host giveaways every month though, so be sure to become a follower so you don't miss out on the next one!

Happy shopping and good luck, friends!









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