Thursday, November 1, 2012

Gendered Quilting

My seasonal job ended along with October, and this is leaving me with more time on my hands for quilting and blogging (and job hunting and thesis preparing, of course). 

Which brings me to gendered quilting.  I've been thinking about this for a while, and it keeps coming up in the blogs I follow and in my real life.  I see quilts made in pairs, with a "boy" quilt and a "girl" quilt.  I see books and patterns published, like Geared for Guys.  There are babies coming along in my family and in my friends' families, and that leads into all the discussions of what colors and designs to pick out.  Pink is for girls, blue is for boys, yellow and green are neutral or "safe."  And I'm fed up. 

Maybe this is my hippie California upbringing coming out, or maybe it's my women's college feminism, but I firmly believe - and I don't think it's that radical - that boys will not be scarred by wearing/using something with flowers or pink, and girls should be encouraged to wear/use things with dinosaurs and trucks.  I followed the blog hop for Geared for Guys back when it came out, and it seems to me that there are plenty of women that would love those patterns - they were generally more minimalist than manly. 

I don't know that I can achieve anything on my own on this issue, but now I at least feel like I've spoken my piece on it.  There's a baby coming up that I'm starting to think about making things for - gender not known yet - and I'm thinking about spaceships and helicopters.  

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

WIP Wednesday - Halloween Edition

It's been eight months since my last WIP post, so counting out this list is quite complicated.  I don't have any big finishes, but I have a lot of tops.  Hopefully next week's WIP will be the Quilting Edition. 

Completed Projects:

*Halloween Costumes - I'm going to count this one as new (and finished!) today.  The hubby and I are going to a Halloween party tonight, and a costume was not optional.  Three old shirts and a little fiberfill later - PONG!

Ongoing Projects: 

Star Log Cabin - Still needs a label - the label is actually all made up, just needs to be written and dated.  I was actually sorting though photographs from the nineties a couple weeks ago and came across progress photos of this quilt!  I think that means it's an older WIP than I had thought.  I guess this is on hold until I can pin down a better date for its piecing (and quilting).

Diamond Throw - Top is DONE!  I waffled, but finally decided to put on borders, and I'm really happy with how it framed it.  The backing is pieced and ready to go.  And I bought a king size batting, so I'm ready to go to town on quilting when I get my courage up.

*Bento Box throw - Hah, another new one!  I had a roll of strips hanging out, and decided

*Sneaky project - Shh.  Backing purchased, waiting for piecing then quilting.

Fall Leaves wall hanging - Looking lovely, ready to be basted.

*Dots wall hanging - Applique finished - a zigzag with matching thread worked nicely.  Basted and ready for quilting.  I'm thinking about trying circle quilting on here.  I had actually tried before to do a spiral overall, but quilting over the fusible web did not go nicely, so I think I'll avoid that.  The edges look choppy, but I'm planning on "framing" it with a quilting hoop, and that will cover all the choppy bits - this is destined for my bathroom wall.

Placemat Pair - One down, one to go.  I really like the one that's finished, so you would think I would get on the second one faster.

Sister Sampler - I'm now ahead of my sister on this one!  For her birthday, I slipped in an extra Friendship Star block, and made one up in each of our colorways.  She's busy working multiple jobs and applying for grad school, so this is on the back burner.

Red and White Crosses and Losses - There's a long story here about how I ordered more of the red I ran out of and it turned out that it didn't match at all and I got sad at the online shop that promised they had matched it.  However, before complaining, I double checked my order, and this one is all on me.  The Fat Quarter Shop was extremely helpful matching the color, and I was careless in ordering.  Now I need to order the right red, and find something to do with three yards of the wrong red.

No Progress/On Hold:
Curtains for the dining room - These have been hanging for ages, but one still needs hemming.  Oops?
Hand-quilted dresden plates
Orange and aqua pillow covers
Orange and aqua throw

Wedding Quilt
Old Timey Stars
Dad's Sudoko Puzzle

This Week's Stats:
New projects - 4
Completed projects - 1
Currently in progress - 16

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A Little Project!

What do you do when your husband borrows your tools and leaves them everywhere?  You make him a present, of course!

Eric has been working on a project (a custom-designed backpack, which deserves its own post and props for its construction) and he has been stealing my tools for hand-sewing portions of it.  I figured I would make something to contain them and then maybe I have a chance of finding them.  I used this tutorial from nanaCompany.  I wanted to make a husswife, but decided to start with something that felt just a little simpler - just one panel, turned inside out and a couple "pages" inside.

Four felt pages inside for pins and needles.

I added two little pockets for a seam ripper and pencil, because he has a habit of stealing those as well.  Now it will live there and not wander away!

I raided my scrap basket and button box, so I used just things I had on hand!  He was so happy with it when he got home.  We'll just have to wait and see if it does its job.  In the meantime, I'm proud of having started *and* finished a project!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sister Kick in the Butt

I chatted with my sister yesterday, and was severely chided for not blogging and for staying well behind on our quilt-along.  (Like, more than a year behind - whoops!)  Sufficiently berated, I went out and bought more fabric - that's progress, right? 

Quilt-Along Progress:

Eliza's Ninepatch - done
Star Dreams & 54-40 or Fight - done
Twirling Star - pieces cut and problematic
Spinning Star
Rising Star
Blazing Star
Star Stairway
Windmill Star
Missouri Star
Broken Star
Ringed Star - (super scary, with partial seams - being saved for last)

So that's 3 out of 14 done.  I might need to replace the light pink that I chose for the middle of the Twirling Star block.  While I'm debating, I think I'll go ahead and do the Spinning Star block and come back to the Twirling (is that okay, Karen?).

Friday, May 4, 2012

Offstage Progress

It's been an exciting month here, and though I've kept composing posts in my head, I haven't gotten my act together to post.  Here's a little catchup on the sewing progress I've been making: 

I finished this shirt (I believe my first ever completed garment!) a few weeks ago, and have so far worn it out in public twice (and once to work).  I think it's a success!  I used a pretty cheap, plain fabric so that if I botched something I wouldn't have wasted pretty fabric, but I think I'm brave enough to try it again in something prettier.  

Speaking of pretty fabric - look at my haul!   Last Saturday I went to a "Text and Textiles" fundraiser for the New England Quilt Museum - around twenty bucks for all-you can fit in a bag!  As you can see, I was pretty good at the making it fit part.  Pretty much all of Sunday was devoted to pre-washing and ironing (so. much. ironing.). 

This was one of the treasures I picked up - there were a couple baskets of blocks and cut pieces.  This is a vintage top - er, three-quarters of the top at least.  I need to spend some time thinking about what I want to do to finish it.  I don't think I want to piece new units, but I need to do something about that gap in the corner.  

Another set of goodies were these itty-bitty HSTs, which I whipped together into a scrappy barn raising setting.  Eric says it would make a good potholder - we'll see.

And my last treasure of the day - Quilting Modern by Jacquie (Tallgrass Prairie Studio) and Katie (Sew Katie Did).  This is a beautiful book, and I love that they wrote it with the same voice that makes their blogs so wonderful to read.  I guess it helps that they're talking about improvisation, which makes it easier to talk about the process and to admit that mistakes happen.  And the pictures!  I'm loving this book, and actually reading it straight through. 

That's all for now!

Sunday, April 15, 2012


Working six days a week has limited my quilting time, and I've been even more distracted for the last two weeks searching in and indexing the 1940 census.  I have managed to finish the top for our diamond quilt in bits and pieces.  This was Eric's idea and fabric selection, and we planned out all of the layout together.  He did a large part of the cutting, and I did all the piecing and pressing.  And he's the one holding it up for the photo shoot.  Definitely a joint effort.  This is destined to be a throw in our living room, fitting with my comfy armchair:

Now to choose a backing and find the time to quilt it!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Friday Finish!

This is the first Friday I've had both a finish and time to post, so it's my first link up to Amanda Jean's finish it up Friday

I finished this quilt a more than a week ago, but heard that it reached its recipient today.  The pattern is out of Fat Quarter Quilts (or More Fat Quarter Quilts - I'm not positive).  It's a lap size quilt for my husband's grandmother, recovering from an injury.  This quilt is like a hug that I could put in the mail!  I quilted in the ditch on the lattice part and straight lines on the borders.  I wanted to do some free motion in the borders, but I don't trust my FMQ skills enough yet.  I'm so happy with the color choices I made for the front.  The back is orange fabric that I used for our wedding and had left over in my stash. 

I love that my quilt has legs!  My very patient husband got dragged out early in the morning before our commutes to take some quilt pictures and get some odd looks. 

My Star Log Cabin quilt is also a finish from last week, but I'm not counting it because it doesn't have a label yet (so it's not really done, right?) and I don't have any pictures of it bound.  This is the one I started some time in high school - I'm trying to figure out exactly when I started it so I can label it properly.  Maybe for next Friday?