Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Alison Glass Celestial Gift Along

I was recently asked to take part in a fun blog hop being hosted by Alison Glass using her fantastic Celestial pattern.


The idea was to use the individual blocks in the pattern, a wonderful assortment of stars, and make small items that would be great for gifting this holiday season.

I was sent the PDF pattern first and while waiting for my Holiday/Winter Bundle to arrive i thought i'd start a little project for my mom to get back into the swing of paper piecing. 


I had a bit of shot cotton left from my sister's Fusion Star quilt and was pleased to see how nicely it played with one of Carolyn Friedlander's Botanic prints. This star pattern is fantastic and will be making it's way into my Christmas Star quilt for sure!


It's far from done, and my embroidery work leaves a lot to be desired, (as does the terrible lighting in this picture!!) I was positive it would be just as easy to embroider with 12wt Aurifil as it would be to use floss, but when stitching words i like to use a split stitch, not so easy with one strand! But my mom thinks it looks great and that's really all that matters right?!

So with the arrival of my bundle i started with one of my favorite go-to gifts for every occasion, the Open Wide Zipper pouch by Anna Graham of Noodlehead.


I used two of the Alison Glass prints from the bundle and paired them with some of Angela Walters Legacy line, mixed in some hand stitching and you have yourself a perfect little travel set!


This little star from the pattern turned out to be my fave, so much potential in one little pattern. I love having the ability to fussy cut a print and manipulate it in fun ways. This one here i made an effort to line up the little circles in the center of the star.


One of the things i enjoy about working with a PDF pattern is being able to easily alter the size of the pattern. I'm not entirely sure i used any of the patterns at their regular size. I adjusted the blocks to the sizes i wanted and just uploaded everything to Staples to be printed. I ended up with a box of printouts, yep, a box! I have more plans for all these little stars!


I've lost count of the number of Open Wide Zip pouches i've made and i think these may be the first were i've used batting in them. I like the structure it gives them but they're still soft enough to squish into your bag.


I've reached the point where i think i've given everyone i know one of these (or three) and now need to decide if they're like quilts and you can never have enough! What do you think? Is there a limit to the number of zip pouches one person can have?

For my next project i paired up some of the bundle prints with a super fun Christmas print from Alexander Henry called Santa's Village.


Unfortunately because i used the wrong size of pillow form you can't see the fun little stars hanging out on the bottom.


I'm hoping if i use a flatter insert you will be able to see them better. I love the mix of prints for this pillow and will definitely be pairing them together again for another project!


I feel like the rest of stars in the pattern aren't getting any love! But this little one is so perfect for little projects!

And because it is so perfect i used it again!


To whip up a couple sets of holiday coasters! Another super simple and fast gift :) Two coasters, two mugs, a cute cello pack of hot chocolate with marshmallows, throw in some chocolates or a candy cane and you have your kid's teacher gifts for the holidays sorted! And while we're on the topic of teacher gifts, do i give teacher gifts at Christmas? I'm new to this school age kid deal!!


I had fun with these and will be making more for sure, i have an Aunt that always without fail uses coasters and i think she would love a set!


So that's that, well for now anyway. I'll be getting a lot of use out of this pattern, i still have another gift on the go using one of the other stars and i'll hopefully share it soon!

Until then make sure to check out the other awesomeness that has been made with Celestial!

Alyssa from Pile O’ Fabric
Megan from Quilt Story
Tessa from The Sewing Chick
Nicole from Modern Handcraft 
Brooke from Silly Mama Quilts

And for your chance to win a fantastic gift for yourself, link up a completed gift project using the Celestial pattern – either one from the bloggers or your very own idea - for a chance to win a signed copy of Alison Glass Appliqué and a $25 gift certificate to her shop (to shop for gifts or maybe a gift for yourself!). You have until December 10th to link up your project, you can do that here.
And, for the duration of the gift along, the Celestial pattern is $1 off and includes free shipping!! Sweet!

Be sure to share your Celestial Gift Along progress on Instagram with #celestialgiftalong for a chance to win a pattern of your choice from Alison Glass's shop! Sounds like a win win to me, finish off some Christmas sewing and maybe win a pattern... awesome!

High fives to all the Celestial sewers out there!
xo nicole

Friday, October 31, 2014

What Shade are You? RJR Blog Hop and a Giveaway!!

A few months ago i was contacted by RJR fabrics wanting to know if i would be interested in giving their Cotton Supreme Solids a try. And if i was interested in also participating in their What Shade Are You blog hop. I jumped at the chance and was sent the most glorious stack of solids i had ever seen... truly, so awesome! I had such an incredibly hard time choosing what shade i was... but i narrowed it down to what i'm calling my Wild Goose Stampede... shade?

cottone supreme solids

I've built this palette around Sarah Watts lovely Stampede print from her first Cotton and Steel line August. I'm in love with the colours in this print and was excited to work some solids into the mix!

I'll be honest and say that little bits of these solids have been getting cut off here and there over the course of the last few months, i've found myself working with a lot of Cotton and Steel lately and these solids just slide right in. I think most of my projects as of late, that include solids, have been from this pull. But the one that shows them all to their best, is what i'm calling my Wild Goose Stampede Pillow!

wild goose stampede pillow

Get it? It's a wild goose chase block but the center fabric is called Stampede - Wild Goose Stampede!! Oh Nicole you're so funny! (that's what i imagine you're all saying right now... don't burst my bubble here folks!)

It's a simple block to make and hey look!...

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

I made a tutorial for everyone!

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

rjr fabrics - what shade are you blog hop

See, i told you it was easy!

Then quilt it up in anyway you like, i opted for the straight line V formation, in Aurifil brass of course ;)

wild goose stampede pillow - quilted with Aurifil Brass

And turn it into a pillow! I backed mine in the same Stampede print and just did a simple zipper closure at the bottom.

wild goose stampede pillow - backed in Sarah Watts Stampede print for Cotton and Steel

Now for the good stuff! RJR is going to give one of you lucky readers your very own fat quarter bundle of Wild Goose Stampede (minus the Stampede print, just the solids here today folks!) All you need to do is leave a comment and all this could be yours!! (and by all this i really only mean the fat quarter bundle) (but what a fat quarter bundle it is! Just think of the things you could do with it!!) 8 glorious colours! So fun! Rambling again aren't i, you're all thinking, will she please just shut her trap and get on with the contest! Yes yes i know, shutting up! But i do need to tell you that unfortunately this giveaway is only open to Canada and the US, i'm so sorry to my international readers :( I'll get ya next time! Promise!

So to see more amazing things made with RJR Cotton Supreme Solids make sure to check out their Facebook page!!


Now go forth and leave a comment (just one)... your fat quarter bundle awaits! (i'll use the fancy random number generator dealie to pick a winner on... hmmm... Tuesday!) Good Luck!!
Contest now closed! And the fancy random number generator picked.....

Wahoo to Janie!! Congrats you're going to love this bundle!


And make sure you're not a no reply blogger, if you are or aren't sure if you are or not make sure to leave your email so i can contact you!!

wild goose stampede pillow

High fives to RJR Fabrics for letting me play with such fantastic solids and for generously letting one of my friends play too!
xo nicole

Linking up over at crazy mom quilts for Finish it up Friday!




Saturday, October 18, 2014

Ahem, shall we call this post the one where i remember that i have a blog and i really should use it more often.

Too long?
How about the one where i forgot to tell everyone that i actually won Sewvivor!!!


Yep, i won. And to be honest folks, it's been a couple weeks now and it still hasn't sunk in. I won. 
Holy crap i won! Yippeeeee!

I'm am so very thankful to each and every one of you. It was a long journey and i never would have made it without all your support and encouragement. I've had a few people ask if i would do it all again, and i most definitely would! That being said, it was stressful, very stressful. I truly didn't think i would make it as far as i did. 


When i started Sewvivor i had a number of secret projects on the go as well as some other projects that all kind of fell to the side. And i kept telling myself that it would be fine and when i was eliminated i would get back to my regular sewing.  And then i'd make it through to the next round. And the cycle kept going. I'm still trying to get caught up!  And that is the only negative thing that i experienced with this whole adventure. And it's entirely my fault. I guess i really could use some time management help around here, i've never been any good at getting things done on time! 


Now i don't want anyone thinking that i'm not grateful, i'm not complaining, i'm just keeping it real here ;) It was an absolutely amazing experience and i've made some truly great friends. One in particular that would have been worth it all even if i had been eliminated the first round. Thanks so much Angie for cheerleading me to the finish line!


I'm insanely proud of the projects i made and while it was stressful, having the prompt and deadline guiding my designs was actually a nice change for me. You all know that i normally just do what i want and if it happens to get finished it's like a miracle around here. So to be able to work at the top of my game and actually finish something?!! I'm as shocked as you all :)

And i have to say, i'm ecstatic about the prizes! My first one showed up the other day and man it's awesome!


Coats and Clark sent the huge pack of threads and Free Spirit fabrics obviously had someone checking me out because all this AMH loveliness came without anyone asking what i would like! Love me some AMH! I haven't really worked with knits all that much and i don't own a serger so any advice is greatly appreciated. I'm thinking i'll use the two prints in the middle for leggings. The pink Cracking Codes print on the left is super soft, so soft i thought it was flannel. I'm wondering if i could back a quilting cotton quilt with it? Has anyone ever done that? Though i do have all my little guys onesies from when they were babies and i've been wanting to cut them into a nice patchwork throw for me... maybe i'll save it for that? I don't know. 

So yeah, things are still busy around here and i'm still working on secret sewing but i'll try and pop in more often, Instagram is where you'll find me on a more regular basis though, just sayin'!! @snippets101 ;)

High fives for me for winning Sewvivor, and high tens for all you guys for your help getting me there! You guys are the best!
xo nicole

Oh, and for those interested i am making up a pattern for the hexie cushion, i've never written a pattern before so if anyone has any sites that may help or any tips on what you like or don't like in a pattern i would be eternally grateful!
I'm also working with someone to put out a pattern for my Carrousel quilt in the new year so stay tuned for that!
And i'll be having a giveaway and tutorial coming up the end of the month!! 
Arghh!!!
So much to do!!


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Sewvivor Challenge Four - Lap Quilt

I'm absolutely thrilled to be here in the top three! I would have never guessed in a million years that i would have made it this far, i'm so very thankful for everyone's support, sweet comments and of course votes ;) 

This quilt is one that i've had in my head for some time now and making it this far in Sewvivor has given me the push i needed to get it out of my head and into reality! So without further ado, may i present...

Carrousel!


Carrousel is a mixture of bits and pieces from Melody Millers's first line for Cotton and Steel, Mustang. Such a wonderful variety of prints in this line and the colours are to die for!


 I also used one of my all time faves from her Ruby Star Polka Dot line for Kokka, the patchwork cheater print in blue, love this print so much! And i love how it works beautifully with her new work.


I also finally cut into this delicious stack of RJR Cotton Supreme Solids,



I spent a ridiculous amount of time fussy cutting images to feature in the Star Dresden wedges and even went so far as to piece three of them with little plus signs to mimic the little plus signs used in some of the Mustang prints. For the most part all the Dresden wedges were made by strip piecing sections of fabric and then cutting out the wedge shapes. I think most of my time with this project was spent mixing and matching the solids and prints together, the combinations were endless!


 I used up a lot of the little left over scraps to improv piece a strip for the top of the quilt.


I knew i wanted the giant Dresden to be the center of attention so i had planned from the beginning to bind it in the same fabric i used to applique the Dresden onto. So i thought a splash of colour along the top of the quilt would be needed!


The giant Dresden measures almost 50" across from point to point and i absolutely love the effect of having the one edge scalloped.



Basting it was slightly more difficult than a regular quilt due to the scalloped edge, which was sewn right sides together then turned right side out before basting. But not hard enough that i wouldn't do it again!


I made thirty six wedges, and tried my best with the fabric i had, to make three of each wedge.


Sorry for the rubbish night time cell phone picture! But i like how they look before they've been pointed. (I was stalling on making the last three, the +wedges!)

I used Carolyn Friedlanders widescreens for both the front and the back, grey on the front and black with a strip of grey for the back. Keeping it simple, just how i like my backs ;)


 I also used the grey for skinny binding. I cut the binding at only 2" and machine stitched it to the front and hand stitched it to the back. 


In an effort to keep this one soft and drapey i minimized the machine quilting and used the dresden wedges to guide where all my quilting lines went. I just did simple lines with Aurifil #2606 Mist through the centers of all the wedges from point to point and continued on in a straight line to the edge of the quilt. It creates a fantastic crossing of lines in the center! Where the lines reach the outer edges the quilt they were too far apart for my batting so i made the decision to do some hand quilting.


I love the little vintage pyrex looking starbursts on some of the Mustang prints and decided that they would be perfect to quilt all over the grey area of the quilt. 

 
I used Aurifil #2975 Brass, (surprise surprise!) for them and also for the simple stitches around the inner and outer edge of the whole Dresden. 


 The perfect amount of hand quilting!


The details:
Pattern - Carrousel by me!
Finished size - 64" x 80"
Fabrics - Star Dresden is all Mellody Miller Mustang, and Ruby Star Polka Dot and a selection of RJR Cotton Supreme Solids.
Front, backing and binding all Carolyn Friedlander Widescreens in grey and black.
Pieced with Aurifil #2600 Dove Grey and quilted with Aurifil #2606 Mist and #2975 Brass



High fives for a super fun quilt finish, and high fives to all of my Sewvivor friends! It's been a blast!

Voting is now over and the wait is on, Monday cannot come soon enough!! Be sure to visit Rach on Monday to see who the winner is!
And because it's been way too long i'll be linking up over at crazy mom quilts for finish it up Friday!