Sunday, February 26, 2012

Pillow Talk Swap - Pillow Received and Mine ready to send!

Pillow and pouch received from Kari and pillow ready to send!
A little sad that Pillow Swap Talk 7 is almost in the books for me! I received a great pillow and zip pouch this week and finished the pillow I will be sending. How am I going to obsess over which pillow is coming to me or wake up thinking of details to put into the making of my pillow to send? Oh well, I guess I will have to obsess over something else!
I love that sometimes a Plan B ends up better than your Plan A. The moment the partners were sent out I made a plan. I lined up fabrics for said plan and also ordered a pattern book from Japan, along with some fabric. The weeks went by and the package from Japan has not arrived. While waiting not very patiently, I decided to try one Granny Square block to test the waters. One turned into joining the quilt-along with Dana and promptly making 12 more squares and before I knew it . . . a new pillow plan was born!
My partner is one cool chick and she needs a fun, modern and funky pillow. I hope this fits the bill! 2 inch squares Granny style gave me blocks a little shy of 7 inch square. I love using black and other bold colors thrown in with lots of colors to unify color schemes. I sew that way for myself, but usually hold off on black for others . . . A Seattle girl at heart and a big believer in a mostly black wardrobe with a few pops of color here and there, I know that not everyone embraces the dark side!
Jenn's use of black and white prints to unify here, gave me the push to do my thing. I know my partner likes fmf in small doses and likes greens/blues/greys, so I thought a few splashes of fmf colors would be fun! Love how it turned out!
Love that I felt okay cutting wildly into my grey, blue and green seeds. I even cut my strips both ways so the running stitch in the print would be going the same way when I matched the prints in the corners.
This swap and others are fun for me because they get me to attempt new things. Some work and sometimes it leads to a redo, that I wouldn't do if the item was just for me. Not sure why I can brings my C or D game when making something for myself, but up my game for swaps! Okay back to the details . . . I ended up not having enough piping cord on hand to make my own piping, but had almost enough standard black to go around the pillow. I sewed some strips of accent fabrics together, ironed under the edges and then stitched it with a zipper foot onto the pre-made binding. When the 2.5 yards in the package didn't quite make it around the pillow, I stitched another piece on and covered it in the patchwork. LOVE how it turned out! Will be adding this to future pillows for sure!
Another too lazy to drive a half hour to a Joann's led to a bit of a disaster and then a happy accident redo. The longest zipper I had on hand was a 16 inch. I put it on the short end of the pillow and thought I could easily slip the pillow in . . . it was a bear to get the pillow in. The seam ripper was put to work and in the end the pillow has a envelope closure. The problem with an envelope back on a long rectangular pillow is a bit of opening, but if you have a lot of envelope closure overlap then it it awful to get the pillow in. To solve this little problem I added four little black snaps. Now it looks good from the back, but my partner will now be able to easily get the insert in, making the pillow easy to wash (he or she has little ones around!) Ties would have been a fun solution as well.
This will be a tough pillow to ship off, but I am excited for my partner to receive it!
LOOT Received
Love the pillow I received from Kari, she used the fun curved ruler, that I just have to have! I am loving the blocks and pillows people are making with it. Kari made the cutest little zip pouch to go along with the pillow. I made an insert for it and it is just so cute! Her detailed hand stitching is such a fun touch! I think this will live on my sewing chair, the colors and the size are perfect for it!
Okay this swap is my favorite swap and I will be looking forward to round 8! Can't wait to see the pillows people post in the next couple of weeks. If you want to take a looks at all the pillows, check it out here!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I couldn't hold myself back any longer. I was planning to make just one block, to make sure it was fun and I could commit to a quilt. Then I couldn't stop at one . . . a couple of days later I have 12 and if I could ignore the kids, laundry and all responsibilities I would keep going!
It all started for me with a photo and Japanese magazine/pattern book Badskirt Amy posted. Then Tamiko's block with itty bitty patchwork sent me over the edge. Jolene's finished quilt, for sale on ETSY, pinned everywhere on Pinterest, made me giddy. So crisp and wonderful. I think I love how the colors just pop from a crisp white background. Was thrilled to see a tutorial on Jolene's blue elephant stitches blog. Finally when Dana started a Quilt-a-long based on these blocks, I was in for sure!
Tons of inspiration on flickr in the I ♥ Granny (Square) group or the Red Barn Quiltalong. I really am drawn to Heather's scrappy blocks and can't wait to see how she hand quilts it.
Thought it might be fun for a few localish (Upstate NY, Vermont and Western MA) friends to gather and make some blocks at the wonderful sewing space at KC Fabrics. After our first sew in Granny style I thought we could get together a month (or two) later and show off our finished quilts. I know I always follow through a bit better when I have a deadline. Let me know if you are interested, we have a group of four or five and would love to add to the fun!

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