Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Swap Gift and Graffiti Love Bots

Swap Gift and Graffiti Love Bots — what? Yep, that's right. Here's what I've been working on this past week.

I signed up for the GenQ Valentines Swap. Here's my Valentine surprise I'm working on for my swap buddy. I'm pretty excited, this is the first swap I've done and my partner looks pretty cool. Check out her blog. I hope she likes this little goody I'm working on. There's actually three different projects in the works in this picture. YIKES... I might need to just go take a clean-up break.

And.... I'm really digging the Spoonflower Fabric Design Contests. Putting together a fluid theme and repeat is way hard. It's much harder than I originally thought (all those gorgeous fabrics in the quilt shops make it look so easy!). I'm really enjoying the learning, and the reason to exercise my doodling skills— I get rusty if I don't draw for a while. Really rusty. The image above is my entry for the Graffiti/Street Art contest this week. I call it - Love Bots. Funny though, I don't really love it, but it was fun trying to come up with an idea and illustrate it based on the theme. What would you write if you had to graffiti up a wall?

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Spoonflower & Wonky Stars

I've been wanting to join the fun of the Spoonflower Weekly Fabric Contest ever since I heard about Spoonflower. Have you heard of Spoonflower? It's so cool — custom printed fabric! You upload your own designs and have it printed on a variety of different fabrics. AND there's so many talented people uploading their own incredible designs on a daily basis. Inspiration overload! So anyway, they do a weekly contest where they pick a theme and ask people to submit designs based on that theme. This submission is for "Outdated Technology". They specifically said "think cassette tapes" and my mind went immediately to all my old mix tapes! Mix Tapes - I loved them (I also had an obsession with recording Rick Dees Weekly Top 40s every Sunday too)!! And then I remembered my high school BFF who was pretty fond of creating fun mix tapes and adding her own dose of quotes and worldly wisdom in between songs. She was wise and quirky beyond her years in high school. Fun memories.

Other than that I've been cutting and cutting and cutting..... and cutting. I cut over 600 3.5" stars for the Sparkle Punch Quilt-Along. That took me most of a Sunday. I actually watched 3 movies on my computer while I was working on the cutting. Then I started cutting my negative space squares last weekend another 300+ to go. Fun times (mostly).
After a while I decided to try and make a few stars. They are trickier than they look. Elizabeth mentions testing out the technique on some scrap fabric before starting on your quilt fabric. I thought "pssssshhh" that doesn't look too hard and started on my precious squares. Turns out she was right. Figuring out that wonky angle and getting the angles to line up for a straight cut when you square up the edges is tricky! I had a few oppsies and a few seam ripper moments (after I learned to stop cutting the fabric BEFORE measuring to see if the angle worked), but I think I finally got the hang of it. I have five stars done and A LOT more to go.  I'm learning quite a bit along the way on this one. Quite a bit indeed.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Hello 2012

Sheesh... What happened to 2011?! And what happened to me in December? I haven't been great at posting to my blog this past month. Here's what I've been up to:

Making bags with Valori Wells gorgeous Wrenly Home Dec fabric (Valori is from Central Oregon and although I don't really know her, I sort of feel like I do because I grew up in Central Oregon too... I know weird but I was pretty excited to use her fabric because of the Central O connection). It's my favorite bag pattern - The Mail Sack by Pink Chalk Studios. This time I actually tried the smaller version and it works pretty good. I can still cram if full of all the stuff I need to pack around. It's hands-free and stylish - LOVE. I made one bag for me and one bag for a friend.

Then I started making these awesome fabric bowls/boxes. The pattern is in the Sewing In A Straight Line book. It's really easy and quick, plus they turn out pretty cute. We made some for teacher gifts with the teachers' favorite animals on the fabric and filled them with their favorite candies too (cow fabric with butterfingers and peppermint patties in cat fabric incase you were curious). Then I made some for home so Paul could put his odds & ends into fancy little fabric boxes instead of just on the counter. Fancy, huh? I think he likes them, he said he'd like some for work too, but in more "manly fabric". Apparently flowers and chickens are not manly enough for office use. I like it though, look at those chickens standing on little eggs. Those of you who know me well, know my fascination with chickens. The fabric is by Robert Kaufman but I'm not sure of the name. 

Then I started making these fabric headband. Cute!! I just love them and they work so well keeping the girls' hair out of their eyes. Check out the tutorial here. Josie enjoys modeling for me.

And here's Charlotte and me with matching headbands. We were running to catch the bus yesterday and I made her stop real quick to snap a photo.

I finished my mom's quilt. Just in time to wrap it up and give it to her for Christmas. It turned out really lovely. I love the bright colors.
Here's the back with my special label that says "A Bright and Colorful Quilt for My Bright and Colorful Mom". Love you mom!!
And then I made some more of my fun labels. A friend of a friend of a friend (related to Papa's Packing Heat) wanted to surprise her mom with a custom wine bottle for her mom. How cute! Nana lives in Alabama so they call her "Nana Bama". The friend had one of her mom's co-workers trick Nana Bama into bringing in a baby picture for some work contest. Little did she know she'd be seeing that picture on her custom wine bottle on Christmas morning! Isn't that picture ADORABLE? I just love old pictures and she looks like a sweet little southern belle. 

And this is another Christmas gift where I drew the caricature of the body builder and slapped it on a custom vodka bottle label. That happens to be THE BIGGEST bottle of Kettle One I've ever seen. And they liked the caricature so much they wanted to find an even bigger bottle to put it on. Pretty funny, but I'm glad the ended up liking their caricature.

Plus, we went to Disneyland for Christmas!! Lucky us, Santa dropped off the trip a week before Christmas. Check out the video above if you'd like to see our vacation video. 

Sparkle Punch Quilt by Elizabeth Hartman

So I guess that's about it. You get a super huge blog post after I've been missing for a while. Here's a quilt I'm hoping to complete this winter. Elizabeth Hartman is doing a quilt-a-long for her amazing Sparkle Punch Quilt. Go check it out! It's so pretty, but requires cutting 500 - 3.5" squares. Yikes! I better get off this blog and get to cutting.