Marquise IV

I haven’t had much opportunity to woe on any of my slow sewing projects recently, so Marquise is taking a bit of a back seat.  I had planned to be working on it for a while, and it will get finished eventually.

Here’s my latest block:

Tula Pink Marquise Block

And my progress to date:

If you’re so inclined, you can read my previous posts on my Marquise quilt by following the links below.

Installment One

Installment Two

Installment Three

Until next time, happy stitching!

– Jane

WIP Wednesday #3: Marquise III

I’ve been falling very behind on the posts lately.  It began with a little bit of a photography issue (otherwise known as Nick being out of town and me having issues with the flash) and just grew from there.  On the plus side, I do have a nice backlog of things to talk about.  Unfortunately, I headed out to HMQS in Sandy, Utah, without the photos I needed, so fingers crossed that my descriptions of them will result in the correct files being emailed soon.  I figure I’ve got enough down time over the next few days to get caught up a little.

Speaking of downtime, it appears as though I haven’t had particularly much of it of late.  It’s not something I notice when I spend a lot of time with my sewing machine, but it becomes very apparent when I realize that after two weeks, I’ve only been able to put one block of my Marquise quilt together.  Hopefully I’ll get through a few more in the next couple of days.  For the time being, here is my solitary block, but even one block puts me four or so hours closer to finishing my quilt top.  12

I might get working on it now.

Here’s my Marquise progress thus far:

And for those that are interested, here are my previous posts on this quilt:

Post One

Post Two

I’m linking up again with Work in Progress Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Until next time, happy quilting!

– Jane

WIP Wednesday #2: Marquise II

It’s unsurprisingly been a hectic and disordered week here. I didn’t get nearly as much accomplished as I’d hoped, but obviously there are some things that have to be prioritized over quilting.

Tula Pink Marquise V

I always feel as though I need a certain amount of time to make getting the machine up and running worthwhile, but paper piecing is something that can easily be done a little at a time. I managed to get through a nice chunk of my Marquise quilt this week.

Tula Pink Marquise VI

As I determined that swapping the fabrics within the blocks was a little complicated, I decided to make the blocks a little out of order, as I was getting a little tired of working with the same fabrics, so things will be popping up in a bit of a random order from here on out. I was really fun to dip in to some of the colors I’m a little more drawn to.

Tula Pink Marquise IV

There’s a downside to the way I’m making this. The kit provides enough papers to make the quilt row by row, but that’s it. As I wanted to make all the blocks then put them on my design wall (or the floor, because they’re undoubtedly too heavy to stick to the flannel) and play around the layout a little, I’m very close to running out of papers. Fortunately I found a website where I could order some more – is that horribly wasteful of me? I just can’t devote the time to hand cutting card from a template, and I haven’t seen a punch for the honeycomb hexie yet – so I’m waiting for those at the moment.

Tula Pink Marquise III

For anyone who’s interested, I’ve worked out that it takes me around four hours to complete each full block. I made the Indigo block in one go, and honestly, it’s not something I’d ever do again. By the end of it I could barely see, but I was so determined to get it done. I’m incredibly happy that I purchased the matching thread, although I was skeptical about the need for so many at first. Having really closely matching thread really makes such a difference. I’m very happy to admit that my stitches are less than even, but I absolutely don’t think it’s going to be a problem once I have this quilted. The one thing I’ve learned so far regarding the thread is to match the darker colored fabric. Light thread seems to show much more obviously against a dark background than darker thread does against a light one.

Tula Pink Marquise Collection II

That’s it for this week’s WIP Wednesday update. Hopefully I’ll have something from the machine to show you next week.

Until next time, happy sewing!

– Jane

Here’s what I have so far:

WIP Wednesday #1: Marquise installment I.

Here’s my next attempt at being social by linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

I did warn that my Marquise quilt top would feature in a ridiculously large number of work in progress posts, didn’t I?  Hopefully they’ll be interesting as they go along.

Tula Pink Marquise Quilt Block 2

First of all, I’m really surprised that I managed to get through two (well, two and a half, but I didn’t see the point of posting a half block) of these in a week and a half.  I’m off to New Hampshire this morning for MQX East, so I expect to hammer out a few more while I’m traveling, but I think that the progress will be slower going after that.

I am at the point of taking a handful of these out with me everywhere I go.  So far I’ve had received an interesting mix of curious questions, and accusations of me being anti-social.  The latter might be somewhat true, but I can hold a conversation and piece at the same time.

Tula Pink Marquise Quilt Block 1

Although I’ve played with hexies before (and no, I still haven’t decided quite what to do with those) I decided to tackle this in a slightly different way, and it’s provided an interesting learning curve.

To begin with, I saw myself going slightly crazy having to tack baste all of these pieces, so I went the recommendations of the staff at Quiltique, and picked up a Sew Line glue pen for basting.  I probably needed a little more in the way of instruction, or perhaps some adult supervision, when I was putting these together, because I really over did it with the glue.  This, not surprisingly, caused all sorts of problems, from getting the needle through the fabric, without catching the paper, to removing the papers, and pressing the seams flat.  Lesson definitely learned.  I’m relieved that only I basted three blocks on that first occasion, and I very much hope that the sewing will be a little easier in future.

Problem number two: mixing the prints around was a lot more complicated than I thought.  I thought I’d stick with arranging each block by colorway, which means that options for switching things around are slightly limited.  One print can only be exchanged for another in the same part of the block, and arranging that without any repeats has been interesting.  I might stick to making Tula‘s blocks in the future, and just mix them up a little when I get to the design board.

Tula Pink Marquise Quilt

I guess it’s time I should be thinking about boarding my flight.  Hopefully I’ll have some interesting things to report to you after the weekend.  I’m really excited to be finally meeting Mandy after so much online correspondence.  I’m taking some classes with some very exciting instructors, although I’m more than a little nervous that because of the move and the travel, I haven’t used a longarm since October.  I’m definitely having a little bit of a crisis of confidence about this one, but I’m sure I’ll have a great time and learn a ridiculous amount.

Until next time, happy stitching!

– Jane

Sunday Stash #1: The Quilt Kit Edition

In order to get in to the habit of writing more regularly, I’ve decided to join some link ups, and the first is Sunday Stash, run by the fabulous Molli Sparkles.

I’ve bought a number of quilt kits since I started sewing, and I haven’t used a single one of them. They’re a great way of collecting fabric at a lower price than buying yardage, but ultimately, I’m usually not particularly interested in making a quilt that’s exactly the same as a thousand others out there.   That’s a somewhat silly thing to say, because of course no two quilts are entirely alike, but it’s just the first thing that comes to mind when I think of quilt kits.

Recently, I purchased two kits, and I do plan on using both of them for their intended purposes – although I think I’ll mix up the blocks a little, to personalize the quilts to some extent. Hopefully I don’t end up with an exact match to anyone else’s, but that’s always a gamble when one makes a popular pattern.

Tula Pink Marquise and Aurifil Thread

I finally gave in and purchased Tula Pink’s Marquise quilt kit, which uses her Moon Shine line. I managed to find one on Etsy that wasn’t ridiculously over priced, and I purchased the threads separately, which was a little disappointing, because all of Tula’s other kits come with matching thread, but I think those are put together by I Heart Tula Pink, rather than Free Spirit. I was very excited when everything arrived on the same day, and I’m really looking forward to diving in to this.

Tula Pink Marquise and Aurifil Thread Open

It’s been a long time since I’ve done anything in the way of English Paper Piecing, so it will be interesting to see how this goes. I imagine it’s one of those projects that might take several years to complete. I found this video of Tula’s debut of the fabric line and quilt kit, and of course, realized that I’d been doing everything incorrectly. I really wouldn’t have thought six to ten stitches per inch would be enough to hold, but it’s certainly going to get me through the piecing faster than my standard twenty or so stitches per inch.

My other acquisition was Jaybird Quilts’ Gravity kit. I’m such a sucker for bright solids, and I think I’ll have a lot of fun playing around with this. I also plan for this one to be an on going project, but hopefully not quite a block of the month quilt. I think I’ll try to get it out every couple of weeks or so. Hopefully I’ll be able to find the time.

Jaybird Quilts Gravity Quilt Kit

I’m sure you’ll be seeing a ridiculous number of work in progress posts about both of these.

Happy sewing!

-Jane

Fun with Hexies

Progress as of June, 2013IMG_0369

I spent a significant portion of the first half of 2013 experimenting with English Paper Piecing.  It took a failed project before I realized that I had to sew the pieces together very tightly, but after that, it was relatively straight forward.  I love the portability of this method, and these hexies were my constant companions on the T for several months.  Unlike the needlepoint, there’s no need for a frame, and once each piece is fully secured and the template removed, the work becomes flexible, and is easily transported.

Parisville Hexies 2I’m still yet to attach these to anything.  The red and blue sets are made from Tula Pink’s Parisville collection, and the larger, lighter blue collection is from her Full Moon Forest set.  I know I’ll make some cushions with the Parisville hexies, and use the Full Moon Forest diamond as a table topper, but I’m still not decided on what to pair them with.  I’ll keep you updated.  Perhaps once I get around to chopping in to my Parisville fabric for my next quilt (which I’ll probably start later this week) I’ll have a better idea on that one.  As for the blue diamond, I’m inclined to like a dark brown backing, but it seems rather uninteresting to make a brown backed table runner.  Hopefully something will come to me soon and I can shift these from my pile of UFOs and turn them in to something useful.

Full Moon Forest Hexies