Tag Archives: bee blocks

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I have really enjoyed participating in quilt bees over the past two years. I was in Stash Bee in 2015 and both The Bee Hive and do. Good Stitches in 2015 and 2016. Today I mailed off my final blocks and I'll be taking a break from online quilt bees. I have two quilts in progress from my beautiful Bee Hive blocks and have contributed to many charity quilts with my do. Good Stitches blocks. I look forward to finishing my two quilts, one of which I may even keep for myself, as well as seeing the blocks I've contributed over the past months turned into finished quilts by my bee mates.

This weekend I got to work cutting out fabric for November and December bee blocks. I'm excited for them to be on their way.

Fizzy

The first block I made was a Fizzy block for Beckey. I love the color combination she chose. Any time I get to use low volume fabrics, I'm happy. She asked us to use grey, navy and any pink. It's worth noting that this block construction is designed to create a slightly oversized drunkard's path unit for each quarter that you trim down before putting the four sections together. It was fast and easy to construct!

 

Watermelon Plate

It was such a surprise when Jaime chose an altered version of my Watermelon Plate block for our November do. Good Stitches blocks. Her version features a rainbow, with low volume corners. Here's what she asked for:

Red: 2.5 x 12.5"
Orange: 1.5 x 12.5"
Yellow: 3 x 12.5"
Green: 2.5 x 12.5"
Blue: 2.5 x 12.5"
Purple: 3 x 12.5"
Low Volume: 4.5 x 4.5" (cut 4)

 

Tic Tac Toe

My final bee blocks for the year were Tic Tac Toe blocks for Tisha, who is making a Halloween quilt for her son. She was the leader and organizer or our swarm for the past two years, so I just couldn't resist making some extra blocks for her. It was fun to pick from my Halloween fabric and reminded me that I really need to make myself a Halloween quilt!

 

Thanks for visiting! I'm linking up to Needle and Thread Thursday.

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Reassessing the List of WIPs

Sometimes WIPs don't exactly align with our current priorities. Sometimes we fall out of love with a project. Sometimes a project was really about learning a skill and once that skill was learned, the project no longer seems relevant. Regardless of the reason, it makes sense to reassess the project list from time to time.

Maybe you've seen my gargantuan WIP list. It's crazy. It's overwhelming. But every time I looked at it, I was still interested in finishing the projects. Or, at least I wasn't uninterested in finishing them. However, as we approach the new year, I've been thinking about what my goals are and what's keeping me from those goals. I have some changes to the blog in the works, and I'm working on my first quilt pattern. Realizing I don't have time to do everything I "want" to do, I decided to once again take a hard look at my WIP list. I asked myself some questions:

  • Have I already learned what I need to from it?
  • Is it in the style I'd most like to be known for?
  • Do I love it?
  • Is it a priority?

Then I looked through my list again and considered my answers. There are 12 projects I hope to finish this quarter. (I recognize that this is a really big, crazy goal.) So far I've finished four quilts, so I'm technically kind of on track (though they were the four smallest projects!). I'm sending another one out to a long arm quilter. That still leaves many to choose from when looking to trim the fat in the 33 quilt WIP pile.

How to decide which WIP/UFO quilt projects to purge. by Sarah at Sarah Goer Quilts

These three will be the first to go. All three of these projects will be donated to philanthropy at the Bay Area Modern Quilt Guild. They've already left the sewing room. Yay, progress! On the bottom of the pile is a Very Hungry Caterpillar quilt top that has been finished since January.

The two bagged projects are from the Little Letters tutorials from Temecula Quilt Company. The blocks are all made for both sets (one in bright colors, one in blues and greens) but neither project has a recipient. It should honestly be pretty quick to finish the quilt tops which is why I couldn't part with it previously, but there are just so many projects with a higher priority for me. And I'd much rather see these finished and donated. I included notes with each of these kits, as well as the link to the finishing page of the tutorial. It'll be up to the new makers whether they finish them as I had intended or reimagine the projects. I look forward to seeing how they turn out. Here's the current state of the blue and green project.

 

Bee Blocks

Also in the interest of cutting back, I've decided I won't be participating in any quilt bees in 2017. That leaves just this month in do. Good Stitches (where Jaime has chosen a rainbow variation of my Watermelon Plate block) and two months in The Bee Hive.

Quatrefoil water lily block by Sarah at Sarah Goer Quilts

For October, Laura chose the Quatrefoil block in The Bee Hive swarm Tisha, and her inspiration was water lilies. The background of the block has become the water, with a center flower and leaves on the corners. The flowers are a variety of water lily colors (pink, purple, white, yellow). I love this variation with the blue background instead of white. I wonder if Laura will fill in with some solid blue blocks mixed in with the lily blocks like you would see open water between the flowers in nature.

 

Heather Ross Swap

Nothing like a deadline. This week is shipping week for the Heather Ross Mini Swap on IG, so I had to finish up my mini. Unfortunately I had a problem in the quilting stage. I pieced the backing from two pieces of fabric and then failed to double check that my top was placed correctly. This resulted in a 1/2" x 12" edge of the quilt that the backing didn't cover... and I didn't realize this until I'd already quilted half of the quilt. :-P

I was unwilling to rip out quilting stitches, so it was time to get creative. Sadly, it was too big to be covered by normal binding. So I decided to do a faced binding, a way of binding the quilt that doesn't show from the front. I've been wanting to learn this new technique for a while, and while I was considering a regular binding I couldn't decide what fabric to use. Faced binding was the perfect solution. My friend Mel pointed me to this tutorial by Victoria at The Silly BooDilly. It was easy to follow and I took Mel's advice to press the 1/4" seam before attaching the binding strips. (I ignored her advise to glue baste out of laziness. ;-)) The faced binding did involve hand stitching to sew down the binding on the back, but that step went pretty quickly. Here's a view of the back.

Full reveal of my swap package on Friday! ;-)

 

Thank you for visiting. What are you working on this week?

I'm linking up to Midweek Makers and Needle and Thread Thursday.

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Some weeks I look back on what I accomplished and I am surprised that I did so much. This is one of those weeks. Kids being back in school and a mostly unscheduled long weekend led to a lot of sewing progress for me.

 

Mysterious Things

Last Thursday the first sewing instructions came out for the Meadow Mystery quilt, by Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs. I managed to finish up my cutting that day, but I haven't yet started the piecing. I have all month to get it done and still be on track, so I've been working on some other projects first. Instagram and Facebook are filled with beautiful versions of the first blocks.

 

Things I Put in the Mail

Yesterday, on the sixth day of the month, I shipped all my bee blocks for the month! This is unheard of. I sent two for my Do. Good Stitches group and one for Shirley in my Bee Hive swarm. Plus the two bonus blocks that I showed you on Monday for my friend Mary. It's so nice to have the monthly commitment already checked off. Sometimes I get them sewn early in the month, but then I usually don't manage to get them out the door until the end of the month.

 

Kid Things

My daughter is making progress on her second quilt. Just like my son's second project, she chose to make a doll quilt. Her's is for a friend. I love that she has been coming into the sewing room to play with her fabric, neatly arranging it on the floor. Over the weekend, I consulted with her on her plan and cut her strips of fabric for her. She pieced them with supervision from me and is so proud that she finished her quilt top in one day. ;-) She raided my remnant binding box to choose something for her quilt and settled on a purple, with a scrappy low volume white to go with it since the purple piece isn't big enough for the entire quilt. She's pinned the purple up on the design wall with her quilt top. (In the first picture you can see a peek of the kitty fabric she's chosen for the backing.)

 

Slow Stitching Things

I get up at 5:30am now. I'm just over a week into this new routine. It means I go to bed at 9:30pm sharp these days, but the kids don't get up until 7:00am so I get a fair amount of time to myself in the mornings. I am not inherently a morning person, but I think this is working. Over the weekend I kept up my schedule, since I figure that's easier than sleeping in on some days. This meant even more time to myself since nobody else in the house had anything to get up early for. I've used this time in a variety of ways, but I spent one of those weekend mornings making progress on my La Passacaglia project. I was halfway through connecting the pentagons, and I finished that step and attached them to the center section. 20 pieces down, 70 to go in this first rosette. Now I need to prep a bunch of itty bitty triangles to make the ten stars that go around this section.

 

Things I Can't Really Show You

Secret sewing is exciting, but it's so hard not to share. Luckily, I have a few friends who I can text pictures to when I'm itching to share but can't post publicly yet. The first project is a quilt that I've finished the top for. I'll be able to show it off once I've given the gift. The second secret project is my Nine-Patch Challenge quilt for Quilt Con that I've finished drafting in Illustrator (with Daisy's help). I've actually designed two versions. I think I'll piece the easier one first and then I'll decide if I want to try to tackle the harder one. My next steps on this project include deciding what colors I want to use and  how to go about piecing the trickier parts.

 

Things That Are Colorful

I love color and I find inspirations in a variety of places. This week presented two color palettes that stood out to me. First, as I'm working on chipping away at pre-washing and putting away my summer fabric acquisitions I stumbled across this palette of solids that reminds me of a vibrant sunset. I have some improv piecing in mind for these lovelies.

My second palette came from a more surprising location, my dishwasher. I opened the dishwasher to find these colorful cups in a line in this order. Deciding I liked them well enough to keep the colors in mind for a future project, I snapped a quick picture. (Don't you just love that awesome 80's tile!?)

These palettes are both particularly interesting to me, because I generally gravitate to the cool colors. I'll have to finish a bunch of other projects before I can dive into these, but I'm keeping them in mind for when I "need" a new project.

Thank you for visiting! I'm linking up to Midweek Makers, Let's Bee Social and Needle and Thread Thursday.