Friday, February 25, 2011

diamond jack: the grand finale

my sister had her baby last week, and i hopped a plane to texas to see my new nephew over the long president's day weekend. i gave him all the things i've been making over the past few months, and i'm positive he was impressed, mistakes and all!

here's his namesake quilt.

i quilted with bright red thread in long diagonal lines.

and the back. 

as you may (or may not!) have noticed, i haven't been as webily active as i was a couple of months ago. i've found it pretty hard to balance work, dinner, friends, projects, traveling,! i mean, it's an effort to put time into everything as it is, toss in a 40+ hour quilting project and blogging about it, and i'm toast.

but i'm trying to get better. and being part of a community helps motivate me, so thanks to all of you out there who prove to be constant sources of encouragement and inspiration.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Bridget Riley Squared

i made my first quilt square ever. it's for the NY Metro Mod Quilt Guild meeting tomorrow morning, which will be another premiere.

the february challenge was to make a quarter circle, 8.5" square, incorporating prints and solids. any color, size and number of arcs. 

inspiration for my square came from a giant bridget riley print i have hanging in my apartment. riley experimented with lines and color and became well-known for her graphic work as part of the op art movement in the 60's. i find her art to be the perfect quilting muse. 

here's my quilt square:

here's my riley print:

and here's to a good meeting tomorrow morning! 

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

diamond jack: part two

i did it! i finished quilt top number two - diamond quilt top number one.

i sewed the diamonds end to end to create long diagonal strips.

then i connected them. sounds simple enough, but it really was quite a challenge for me. i've never tried to match corners up, and let me tell you... it didn't come naturally.

slowly it came together, and flaws and all, i think it's perfect.

quilting soon!

Monday, January 17, 2011

diamond jack: part one

my sister's baby shower is coming up and in an effort to settle on the perfect quilt, i've been wading through endless blogs and flickr accounts and magazines, waiting for something to jump out and inspire me.

then i found jess at urban patchwork's diamond quilt and knew that was the direction i should take.

cue hours of measuring, cutting, er- mis-cutting, re-cutting, arranging, changing, pondering, walking away, returning, blood, sweat and tears (well, no tears yet, but i haven't even started sewing) and here's a look at what i've come up with:

here's how i got there:
cutting about million strips of fabric. 4 inches didn't create a balanced diamond, so i went back and re-cut them all to 3 inch pieces. much better.

working with what seemed like a million strips of fabric gave me - surprise!  - a billion diamonds.

i began laying them out on the floor in a random pattern.

and ended up with this:

something about the scattered-ness and the color combinations and the disorder of the first attempt didn't work for me. i started removing fabrics and trying to create a more balanced feel to the quilt top.

i thought adding more white could give the bold colors and design a little room to breathe.

i feel so accomplished and i haven't touched the sewing machine yet! i have come to terms with the thought that this might be the best the quilt top ever looks. i don't really even know how to begin to approach the sewing - i imagine it will be quite a challenge - but i'm up for it and will post the result - whatever it may be - as soon as it's ready.

wish me luck!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

sewing 101: receiving blanket tutorial

in anticipation of the birth of my first nephew, i'm on a mission to make a bunch of useful stuff for my sister. it also gave me an excuse to buy a few yards of that robert kaufman dr. seuss fabric i've been eyeing for the last few months!

i thought i'd start by making a quilt, but when i began looking at all the fabrics and trying to decide my plan of attack, i knew that if i cut up the print with all the little colorful characters scattered about i'd probably end up with alot of severed arms, legs and heads. not exactly the look i'm going for.

so i decided that a great accompaniment to any quilt is a receiving blanket. and that's what i did. i kept it simple with the seuss fabric top and a soft cotton knit on the back. top it off with some bright red stitching and there you have it!

it's a very simple, functional, quick and easy project, and a great one for beginning sewers, or crafters on the go. i am happy to share my full, free tutorial here. good luck, and happy sewing!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

give away!

hello readers! i have a giveaway to offer today that'll give you a $25 gift certificate that can be used for anything on one of CSN's over 200 online stores. from modern dining room furniture and well-designed storage ideas to that herman miller desk that would fit perfectly in your studio - oh wait, that's me and i don't have a studio.

leave me a comment just to say hi, or tell me about the most important piece of furniture (drafting table? sewing desk? sofa?!) in your craft making process. i'll choose a winner next week.

good luck,
triangle shirt

commenter number 4: ASHLEY
thanks to all who participated and shared your favorite hobby helpers. what great responses!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

everybody has a first: the grand finale

so here it is, my first quilt!

i didn't have a chance to get a really great photo of it since, in my usual style, i finished the binding at the last second and had to rush off to the airport to catch my flight back to NYC. anyway, i'm pretty happy with it.

here's the front.

and the back.

and the binding.

i've never really been one to make new year's resolutions, but because of this quilt, and how it made me feel to see it to completion and give it to someone i care about, i'm going to make one for 2011.

i hope this blog and the production of many more exciting projects will be the result of my goal to spend more time working on a part of myself that i've avoided - for one reason or another - committing to. my creative side.

happy 2011!