Monday, March 14, 2016

Quilting is Awesome!

Another awesome t-shirt quilt by Quilts 'N Kaboodle

Yes, I should be quilting instead of blogging this fine Monday morning....but I really wanted to take a moment to do my "week in review". They say it's good to know where you've been so you know where you are going... Those "they sayers" must be the smartest people in the world, don't you think?

Awesome - that word gets used so much but it's really a cool expression. I couldn't help but smile when this t-shirt was "up next" during the quilting process of yet another graduation t-shirt quilt. Tis the season  I love making t-shirt quilts - it's so neat to have a small glimpse into someone's life representative by their collection of t-shirts.

What will we do today? In my own little corner in my own little room!

 Meanwhile, in my own little corner in my own little room I was deciding what to work on this week as a personal project.  When I get creative I get really messy ~ I call it creative clutter. I am blessed to have accumulated a vast collection of patterns, fabrics, notions over the past thirteen years of being in business as Quilts 'N Kaboodle. Prior to moving to our current home with a fabulous studio for creativity I quilted in an RV ~ will never forget storing my machine and little shoe boxes full of fabrics and notions under the dining room built in table and under the built in couch, AND under the lift up bed. RV's have the best storage hiding places! Yep, those they sayers again remind us to never forget our roots!

Did someone say Sew In?!!
One thing I learned back in the day was how to be portable! That comes in handy when it's time for the Island Quilters Guild monthly (or almost monthly) Sew Ins. Yep! I can pack up in a hurry when I hear the words SEW IN!! Several of us gals have gotten really snazzy by investing in the "little red wagon" ~ a really cool fold up transportation mode.  It's so much easier to pull all the gear than to make so many trips to and from the car.  And yes, I bring my own chair.  I've learned through the years that the fold up tables and folding chairs don't offer (a) comfort or (b) proper height for ergonomics. A bungee cord keeps it all together and many times I can make it all in one trip! Well, maybe two

I can chain piece for miles and miles

The thing I enjoy about sew-ins is that I can focus on distractions of letting the dog out, or remembering that you need to do something in the house, or trying to multi-task the day with quilting, laundry, etc.  Just sew sew sew.

Galveston Island Quilters Guild Sew In

We have a fun place to gather - well lit, tables provided, a nice kitchen and facilities. We are a small guild and sometimes have just a handful of ladies sewing and other times we have to double up and share the tables. It's all good. Lots of chatting, show and tell and sometimes little mini schoolhouses - where a member "teaches" us something new. Always a good time with these ladies!

Double Occupancy - Square Surrounded Layout

I've been working on a series of Hunter Star quilts this past year. In just 4 short weeks I will be teaching Deb Tucker's Technique using her Rapid Fire Hunter's Star Ruler on Cactus Quilt's 3rd Annual Quilting Cruise leaving out of Galveston. I can hardly believe it (I'm pinching myself) for the second year I have to go on a 7 day cruise to teach...ain't that a shame

I've come up with a pattern I have called Double Occupancy - since cruise goers have to share a room I thought wouldn't it be kinda cool if they shared their fabric ..... the pattern uses half of a jelly roll precut pack (2.5" strips)  and half of a layer cake precut package (10" squares) plus background. Then I got to thinking that since the roomies were sharing fabric and taking the same class wouldn't it be neat if their quilts had the opportunity to look totally different...of course fabric placement in a scrappy quilt would be different but I mean REALLY DIFFERENT...

So the over achiever that I am I came up with 13 layouts using the same blocks and I am working my way through making the class samples...The one above is number 7 and this is made from the "kit fabric" for the cruise.

Why thirteen? A baker's dozen perhaps? Nah.... Thirteen has a special place in my family's a few examples...2016 marks 13 years of Quilts 'N Kaboodle being "a business". 13 is our youngest son's favorite number. He's an artist and hides the number in many if not all of his paintings....but the root of 13 goes back to my grandfather, my mom's dad. He was born in 1913 on Friday the 13th. Not only that he was the 11th (and final) child of the family making his family 13 members. On top of that a his full name had 13 letters...  okay, so maybe we are a little silly, but 13 is a fun number so I'm making 13 Hunter Star quilts for my cruise....oh my, did I mention that it's 4 weeks away!!

By the way, it's really an easy easy block to make. I've gotten pretty fast at it - I made the one at the sew-in in only two days!  Could have made it faster if I wasn't talking I think my average without borders is 6 hours. Not too shabby if I do say so myself.

Trimming down the Hunter's Star block

I can't remember when I pieced these blocks but they were just waiting to be trimmed so Sunday after church I came home to my own little "Sunday Sewing", trimmed up the blocks and pieced the top.

Double Occupancy - Ocean Waves layout

It's almost hard to see from the photo because it kinda blends in with my orange walls in the background. and the other quilt hanging next to it...I've ordered the border fabric and hope it comes in before the cruise.   I call this layout "Ocean Waves" and yes, it's a Hunter's Star!  I think it reminds me of confetti on the water yep, kinda festive don't you think? I'm so looking forward to my upcoming cruise. Can't wait for sunny skies, deep blue waters and sharing the patterns with my students.

In the meantime, I think I hear a quilt calling my name...I have a beautiful customer quilt to be custom quilted this week...

Until next time....

His Mercy is new EVERY morning!

PS  Happy birthday to our oldest son...those "they sayers" will tell you that time passes quickly, and yes, they are more than right when it comes to children. How did that tiny 6 pound baby turn into such a wonderful 6+ foot adult!  Happy birthday Eric.

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