Quilt Transformation

April 25, 2011 § 5 Comments

I’ve made many quilts with strips and scraps and scraps of strips. It goes without saying that the goal is to use some of the fabric in my stash and create a beautiful quilt.

I began this quilt about a year ago.

 The quilt was achieving the look I wanted – colors bleeding into one another to form an asymmetrical rainbow – and I had great plans! But the corners were very thick with all those pieced parts and since I didn’t paper piece the blocks I had some wave in the quilt. But mostly the corners were making me crazy! They were unruly. I was starting to dread the entire project, including the quilting, and I was nowhere near quilting the darn thing.

So I put the quilt and all the extraneous parts away in a colorful little box.

Except for a few small pieces that taunted me for a year.

Then a few weeks ago I took a small square of strip pieced pink fabric and put a yellow border on it.

I liked the results but wasn’t quite sure what to do or where to go so I just looked at the block for a few weeks.

Then! An a-ha moment! What if I take apart my “rainbow” quilt and border each square in a complimentary color?  Armed with my seam ripper at a neighborhood meeting and a completely uncomfortable chair, my quilt was deconstructed into all these little parts.

I ironed all the blocks and starting sewing borders on my “new” project. Then I decided that a complimentary border was too orderly for me, so I mixed them up to get this.

I bordered three blocks, put them on the design wall but wasn’t happy with how my quilt looked.

I was, once again, a bit frustrated…then I looked at the rather large pile of red squares I’d made and put them on my wall. I didn’t want to make more blocks. So far I have this and I really like it.  I’m pondering a golden yellow sashing with red cornerstones but really I haven’t settled on anything yet.

I think it’ll look good. What do you think?

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Kuondukewa Siwewe Tu – If I only knew Swahili

April 22, 2011 § Leave a comment

Kuondukewa Siwewe Tu

I have no idea what this means but it’s on a panel I recently quilted for someone.  The panel was purchased in Africa and it’s stunning! I absolutely love it!

The center of the sunflowers have white bubbles (in case you missed that). I tied every other bubble with white perle cotton.

I also tied the centers of all the pink flowers and the center of the small yellow flowers along the outside edge. I knew I needed to add more quilting for stability so I stitched along each side of the indigo borders, the length of the vine and around each sunflower.

I’m really pleased with this quilt and so is the recipient.

Japanese Taupe

April 20, 2011 § 2 Comments

I really love Asian textiles and artwork. The colors and textures, the attention to detail. It’s awe inspiring.

I remember being at the Houston Quilt Market in the fall of 2009 and staring at the quilts in the Hanamomen booth (maybe it was Lecien, or Kokka….I don’t remember but the quilts at the Japanese fabric booths are always incredible).  Really, really unbelievable!

Recently I was in New York visiting my sister and I ran across Susan Briscoe’s book Japanese Taupe: 125 Blocks in Calm and Neutral Colors. HOLY COW! I just HAD to have it and, while I could have waited to get it from my local quilt shop, I wasn’t willing to wait. And I needed reading material for the return trip, right?

I did, of course, buy some fabric, too.

I have collected a few more from my favorite local quilt shop and  have been digging through my stash.

And now I’m busy planning my next quilt using this book. Just. Can’t. Wait!

Delicious Database

April 14, 2011 § 1 Comment

I asked husband the other day if he could create a recipe database for me*.  I find a lot of recipes online and have an archaic method to store them. It’s sad, really, and a program to store and organize and do all those great things would help my life exponentially.

Husband suggested I look online since he had a hunch something like that already existed.  Later that night he pulled up the website for MacGourmet and I giggled. I wondered why Mac wanted to get into cookware since the image below is what I saw first. Then the lightbulb went off in my head and I got it.

Introducing what I call the iPot. hehe

* husband is a computer guru and whipping up a program like that would have been easy for him

From Blah to Ta-dah! a Bedroom Makeover

April 7, 2011 § Leave a comment

When husband and I bought our house we agreed that the last room we’d decorate would be the master bedroom. Little did I know it would take nine years. I mean, come on! Nine whole stinking years! The room came close to being fully decorated a few times but never quite what I wanted. It turns out it was worth the wait. At least it was to me. The story goes like this…..

Husband and I were finally ready to make the master bedroom our little sanctuary. We chose a paint color for the walls, bought some fabric and new draperies (store bought- yikes!) and had a great general plan. Or so I thought.

Then the seat cushion of our living room armchair got a rip. A bad one. On both sides of the cushion. grr. And it was beyond repair (think 6 plus inch tears). Fabric wasn’t available to fix the cushion and neither was a replacement chair. I did a little research and found that it would cost just as much to buy a new sofa as it was to reupholster what we had. And we wouldn’t be without living room furniture for a month and a half. It helped that we’d actually be purchasing a decent sofa this go round. Mid-May delivery and I can’t wait! But I digress.

So my plan to paint our bedroom became a plan to paint the entire house. Husband and I knew there was no possible way for me to paint our entire house. I painted our house before we had kids and felt confident that I could handle painting one room with our two kids floating around. But not the whole house. We hired a professional to paint and it was worth. every. last. cent.

The house was mad for about a week. Stuff was everywhere but I’m really pleased with the results.

Here’s our bedroom before:

Here’s our bedroom during:

And after:

What I did:

1. painted Sherwin Williams Destiny -it’s grey with a touch of red, making it kind of an orchid color – it’s fabulous!

2. replaced curtains

3. re-purposed tiles over sofa into a new headboard (there’s a third over the master bath tub)

4. removed quilt from wall (I never liked it there) and replaced with photography – from our wedding, no less

5. added some candles

6. covered cords on wall sconces (I hate cords)

7. made new pillows from some beautiful silk and velveteen fabrics*

7. recovering cushion on the bench with brown twill I already have (woot!) to match large chair in bay window

I have to say I now LOVE our bedroom. It’s my new favorite place!

* I was really nervous to cut into these fabrics. The fabric was expensive and I did not want to make any mistakes. Turns out luck was on my side.

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