Friday, June 24, 2022

I'm Actually Quilting! / Beauties Pageant 178

I’m sure you’ve been waiting with baited breath since last week’s cliff hanger of a blog post, wondering, What will it take for Michelle to quilt one of those projects already?!

The answer was simple: bribery. I want to cut fabric for a new quilt and decided I couldn’t touch my rotary blade until one of my four to-be-quilted projects was done. (I have no shame!)

Because my ombre Ridiculously Easy Jelly Roll Quilt was already basted (and had been for, like, six months), it was the logical candidate.

I’ve never spray-basted a project and let it linger for so long before, but after a good ironing, the sandwich was ready for quilting. Using my Hera Marker, I marked some straight lines that reinforce the chevron pattern of the piecing. (Take a look at my previous post to see the full flimsy and the chevron design.)

It’s proving to be a messy endeavor. I used a dark navy solid for the background, and there’s a solid layer of white batting fluff all over the quilt top. A swipe with a lint roller will remedy the problem, but the situation has me convinced that as an owner of two Golden Retrievers who shed constantly, I should not keep this quilt for myself.

I also encountered a novel dilemma: I can see spray baste on the back of the quilt. The fabrics on the quilt top are from Moda and American Made Brand. The back is almost entirely Art Gallery, and I’ve encountered issues with spray baste not adhering well to the fine hand of AG fabrics. As a result, I was liberal in the application on the back. (Otherwise, I basted the way I always do: spraying the batting, not the fabric, and dry-ironing after basting.)

I’m expecting the issue to resolve itself in the washer. Fingers crossed that I am right!

Swing by next week for pics of the finished project!

To make your own Ridiculously Easy Jelly Roll Quilt, visit my Etsy shop. : )

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Friday, June 17, 2022

Proof of Progress / Beauties Pageant 177

Hello, dear readers! I have to admit, today’s post is more for me than it is for you. I need a reminder that the work I’ve been doing at my computer and my sewing machine will eventually come to fruition.

I’ve gotten really good at spending more time at my computer in design mode this year. This might come as a surprise to you, considering the only pattern I’ve released has been in the pages of Love Patchwork and Quilting! When will another pattern see the light of day? School in my town let out yesterday, so it’s likely not to be anytime soon!

Meanwhile, the quilt tops are piling up. At the top of the post, you’ll see my Rain or Shine Quilt, designed by Camille Roskelley and featuring multiple fabric collections designed by her and her mom. It’s a simple pattern to follow, but it requires a ton of sewing. (The star sashing alone required snowballing 336 corners!) The finish line is far away, though: Before basting/quilting/binding this project, I need to finish the top with a border. Blerg!

And below is my Ridiculously Easy Jelly Roll Quilt, which I spray-basted last November and have yet to begin quilting. The first step in completing that project will be dusting it off—yes, literally.

There are two other projects that are pressed and ready to go to a longarmer. Fingers crossed I can drop them off soon. A finish would be welcome right now!

Part of this plight is my own doing. Yes, pattern writing and quilting are time-consuming endeavors to begin with, but I also like to have many balls in the air at a time.

I suspect you feel the same at points with your own projects. Any advice for staying energized and optimistic? Share your thoughts in the comments below. : )

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  • Post your finish in the linky tool. (No links to your own giveaway or linky, please!)
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  • Visit and comment on other participants’ finishes.

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Friday, June 10, 2022

Fast and Easy Gifts for Teachers / Beauties Pageant 176

The start of this year’s teacher gifts

I’m still trying to get my brain around the fact that school vacation is almost here. I guess it doesn’t matter whether I’m successful in this endeavor: One way or another, my kids are out of school in another week!

Last year, I was so on top of things, mainly because I had to be. My younger son was finishing up his last year in elementary school, and deciding to do something special to mark the occasion, I made eight quilts to give to his teaching team. (This is my kiddo with special needs. He has many, many teachers and therapists in the school system working with him.) I loved giving away these quilts. I took pictures of all of them and asked the recipients which ones they’d like before determining who would be given what. It made the process less stressful for me and increased the possibility that these educators would receive a quilt they liked. (Read more about these quilts here.)

The pile of quilts I gifted last spring

Fast-forward a year, and I’m flying by the seat of my pants! I saw an Instagram reel from Crosscut Sewing Co. about the shop’s key fob kits on Tuesday. On Wednesday I placed my order of kits and standalone supplies, and on Thursday I had received it. (Crosscut is an online retailer with in-person sewing classes; it’s about an hour from my house, so the shipping is super speedy.) Now it’s Friday, and I’m in go-go-go mode. I think 10 key fobs will suit my needs, but I’ll likely make a full dozen to be on the safe side.

Supplies for my next key fobs

New England schools always get out so late—the first holiday of our summer is the Fourth of July, not Memorial Day—so this gift idea likely doesn’t come in time to help out those of you who also have kiddos in school. But keep these gifts in mind for the future They are the simplest ones I’ve ever made. They’re also inexpensive. I’m making all of mine with jacquard ribbons, but you could just as easily use scraps that you have on hand. (The ribbon in the picture at the top of the post is designed by Kaffe Fassett for Renaissance Ribbons.)

If you’re making teacher gifts—or have recently gifted some—add them to this week’s linky. I’m always on the lookout for new ideas. : )

Check out other simple From Bolt to Beauty gift ideas here.

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The pageant rules are simple:
  • Post your finish in the linky tool. (No links to your own giveaway or linky, please!)
  • Point your readers back here with a text link or use the button above.
  • Visit and comment on other participants’ finishes.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter