Friday, December 16, 2011

remember a little while ago when i shared the news that our family will soon be growing? well, baby is growing and squirming and generally living it up in this mama's not-so-little belly with about 18 more weeks of baking to go. while i am generally a huge fan of surprises (frances mae was a surprise - especially because i could have sworn that she was going to be a he and was so amazed when johnny blubbered out 'its a girl!'), i couldn't help myself from finding out what this little nugget is. i need to be prepared, i need to bond, i need to make little things for this little one - for this little boy.

and so i'll start by making piles of these little pants. i adapted an existing pants pattern that i already had in my stash to have a more narrow leg and a little extra room for a cloth diaper, and i must say, i am super pleased with how they turned out, especially because i can turn out a pair in about forty five minutes - go me!

in anna maria horner little folks flannel and nani iro double gauze

so now i will continue to knit tiny little treasures from my ever growing ravelry library, add to my fabric wish list for this little boy's quilt, and day dream about mobiles, baby moccasins, and moses baskets.

Friday, December 9, 2011

and then it was quiet, again - oops. but i promise, i have a good excuse! i've been working on cutting and sewing and quilting as much as i can in the last few weeks for the few craft fairs that i'm taking part in before the holidays hit. while it is fun to make lots of little things that might catch people's eyes, it is hard to remain inspired when your main motivating factor is sell, sell, sell.

so i indulge myself a bit with little quilts. while the zig zag quilt is still for sale (if it doesn't go at mass market this weekend, it will be listed on etsy), the woven quilt was a gift for a new little friend - due to hit the scene by the end of january. i love making baby quilts. lovelovelove. expect to see many more.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Friday, November 11, 2011

the challenge with taking photos on this island isn't the lack of scenery or the right lighting. it's the fierce wind that likes to whip across the island - taking hats and quilts with it. although this quilt has been finished for almost a week, i had to wait for a calm day on which to photograph it. and while i did manage to explore the woods with frankie and rosie (my previously mentioned best helpers) on a foggy/windless morning to get some snapshots of it, today might not have been the best day to try to get a picture of the full, finished quilt. but i managed, i guess.

as you can see, rosie is the least helpful of the bunch.

this is a quilt that i have been working on intermittently for (ahem) about five months. i designed it after making my chevron mini quilt, with a calmer color palette in mind. little did i know that sewing, cutting and trimming, and piecing 352 half square triangles would take me so long. i soon grew bored and frustrated with the tedious process and set the few blocks that i had finished aside. but at some point - probably when i cleaned my sewing table and realized that there were unfinished half square triangles everywhere - i decided that it was about time that i finish it. and so i did, and just in time to bring it with me to the local craft fairs that i'll be taking part in in the next month or so. 

see what i mean about the wind?
almost every photo turned out like this, or worse.

measures 60" x 60"
machine pieced and quilted
fabrics used are kona cotton in ash, vintage sheet,
and crazy for dots and stripes in bright blue by rjr fabrics

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

happenings around my work table:

i can't wait to show you this quilt all finished up.
i'll just wait until its nice and crinkly and soft,
fresh out of the dryer.

Monday, November 7, 2011

i mean to write in this space often, i really do. i mean to take photos every day (styled perfectly, in perfect lighting, with no interruptions from my little girl pulling on my leg or a helpful kitten taking a nap on the photograph subject), i really do. but this just doesn't happen in my world. instead i sit at my sewing machine or get wrapped up in an idea for a new quilt or snuggle with my first baby. 

so i'll write a post today - although if this post has a point or not is debatable - and maybe one the next day. maybe i'll get lucky and write about three different things on three different days, all in one week! but let's not count on it. maybe i will post more photos and inspiration and write a little less. or maybe not.

but today there are these hanging in my kitchen window. when the sun comes up in the morning it highlights of all their seams. they will soon have ribbons and backing and maybe some quilting and they will be 'the miniest of all quilts'. i picture them in groups of three on a forgotten wall, or hanging from a dresser drawer knob, or tucked into a christmas tree.

Friday, October 21, 2011

it seems that its been mini quilt weather around these parts - rainy, quiet mornings and sunny afternoons lend an appealing air to my little sewing table by the kitchen window. though i miss my 'studio' in the bright sunroom we had in our home in maine, this will have to do. and it is.

001 (2)
006 (2)

mini quilts seem to be my distraction these days. i should be cutting triangles and wool felt, attaching zippers to linings and outers, designing a simple dolly that wears skirts or shirts or hats, and finally finishing that twin size quilt that's been hanging around forever. but instead i choose to experiment with new techniques and blocks, mixing fabrics that i never thought would compliment each other. not such a bad distraction if you ask me!

star minis

Monday, October 17, 2011

what a way to start of the week - one blog post down, three mini quilts done, one in progress, and the sun is shining! it would seem that quilting-all-day-with-frankie-as-helper rather than serving-food-while-family-is-home-without-me is agreeing with this mama. now, if i could get some better lighting in here i would show you the progress that i made this weekend - winter craft fairs, here i come!

Friday, October 14, 2011

finally - finally! inspiration has hit me like a ton of bricks and it couldn't have come at a better time. life here on this little, green island is very seasonal. after memorial day beaches are open to the public again, traffic is sane and manageable (keep in mind their is no such thing as a stop light or traffic circle here), and i can now recognize and greet at least one local while frankie and i run errands. and i am no longer a slave to the hungry masses at the local general store/lunch stop - leaving me with plenty of time to cut and sew and stitch, scheme up new designs, and make plenty of long to-do lists for this little space (and my home, too). 

this sudden burst of energy can't be attributed to more 'days off' alone - as i'm now entering the second trimester of my second pregnancy (a new baby, and boy, can this one grow!) i can eat again, i can almost sleep at night and stay awake during the day again, and, most importantly, i can't sit so still anymore. i promise not to go full-time pregnancy-blogging-heal-wearing-uber-hip-mom-on-the-go on you, but little quilts and hand knit hats with matching booties are kind of my thing - consider yourself fully warned.

i think i'll only show you this quilt in bits and pieces from now on, until its completed. as you might remember, sad little half square triangles and chevrons have been waiting around patiently for the day that i might discover them again. well, that day came, with a vengeance. i'm happy with where it is going and excited to see where it ends up - so little teasers it will be until i can properly unveil this quilt.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

a + b + c =
a new trio of mini quilts:
improv pieced,
patchwork letters,
meant to hang in a row.

i fully intend to continue on with this project - whether that means completing the alphabet or moving on to numbers. i love how freeing the patchwork became and the puzzle that improv piecing can be. the process of straight line quilting (i echoed the shape of the letters with a new line every 1/4") was a bit addictive as well. it became a chance to meditate on the work that i had done and the possibilities of what could be.

frankie insists that the letter 'a' quilt should be full size - she sits her little self down on the floor and tries to cover her  toes with a quilt that is just not big enough. maybe a 'frances mae' quilt is in the starts for my baby girl.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

and with the return of cool air comes the return of my inspiration/motivation/creative brain. let's face it, summer time just isn't my thing. besides enjoying the occasional frozen yogurt and a farmer's market here or there, humid air, bathing suits, mosquitoes and i just do not get along. 

but now - oh now! - there are craft fairs right around the corner that require planning and preparation. there are cool, quiet nights that are just screaming for quilts that need to be bound (and therefore snuggled underneath). and finally a sewing table that is tidy - i won't say clean - enough to stack fabric and sort scraps and sew sew sew!

the next few weeks (and months, perhaps) around these parts will be spent:
:: making piles of triangles to sew onto my new bunting bags. 
:: cooking casseroles and baking muffins.
:: rekindling my love for this little island that has been our home for five months now.
:: digging into my giant pile of works in progress.
:: knitting up some beautiful alpaca that has been in my stash for far too long.

and a sneak peak of another project that is so close to being done i can almost taste it. i can't wait to share.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

star mini quilt

it would be an understatement to say that i am very much looking forward to october. i am going to organize my sewing table (the mess is a bit embarrassing at this moment), finish a few quilts, and get started on some new projects that have been brewing and stewing in my head all summer.

one of those projects involves mini quilts - this paper pieced star was made in one day and i oh so love it. wouldn't you like one to hang on your wall or keep on your dresser?

xo for now

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


look at what arrived in my mail box the other day! a beautiful package of illustrated, delicate and bold, floral and graphic fabrics that i might just have to keep on my shelf to admire for a little while. there are some ideas floating around in my head about what this collection could become but for now i am happy to simply admire them until the perfect plan comes along.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

swoon block

swoon block #2 done.
both blocks quilted.
(and machine quilted at that. pat one the back for a new skill.)
now to back and bind.
et voila, new pillows!

two swoon blocks
two swoon blocks

Thursday, July 21, 2011

it took me a long time to cut all of the pieces for this enormous (twenty four by twenty four inches!) quilt block - let's just say that miss frances mae is not the best helper. she very much enjoys sitting her little bum down right in the center of my cutting mat and kicking and twirling and screaming. she also wants nothing more than to sit on my lap while my sewing machine is going. while i love that she wants to watch and occasionally help, it takes a lot of energy to stop those quick little fingers from going under the veryveryvery fast needle.

anyways: after about three hours of work, here's the first swoon block made by my own two hands. and while this one is not destined for a full quilt, i can't wait to get started on more and more!

swoon block

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

spiderweb mini quilt: done!
oh how nice it is to both start and finish a project all in one day.
a nice sense of accomplishment on my end, thank you very much.

spiderweb mini quilt
spiderweb mini quilt
spiderweb mini quilt
spiderweb mini quilt
spiderweb mini quilt
spiderweb mini quilt

and now to gather the prettiest shells and stones i can find at the seashore, a good bar of local chocolate, and some other fancy vineyard goodies - wrap it all up in brown paper packaging, and send this baby to its rightful owner! (wink, wink. can you guess who you are!?)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

its no secret around here that i love my fabric. vintage pillows and sheets, fat quarter stacks, scraps from my mama's collection - it all finds its way home with me to be used in one way or another. despite this love, i rarely buy myself new (and i mean brand new) yardage. it is just so much easier and more gratifying for me to be a little thrifty. however, this is all going to change very soon. i am in love, big time, with miscellany by julia rothman. this collection is unlike anything i've seen recently - delicate and feminine while remaining neutral and playful. and oh boy, do i have plans for this (as soon as it is available, of course)!

Picnik collage

i think that i will snatch up a fat quarter of each print
and some kona medium grey
and set to work on my swoon quilt.

p.s. check out more of julia rothman's work here. she's such a talented illustrator that its no wonder i love her fabric oh so much.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

catch me if you can

my 'catch me if you can' quilt seems to have stalled for the time being. i'm half way there, but i have to admit that the sheer amount of half square triangles (352!) that i have to trim is a bit daunting, and its just too beautiful outside to fret over!

and this can be a little distracting, too:


i mean, really. could she get any cuter!?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

zig zag quilt

in an effort to be honest in this little space of mine, i should say right now:
i have not been looking forward to writing about this quilt.

i jumped right into this quilt without really thinking about it beforehand - i had never made, let alone finished, a project of this size before. never cut this much fabric before. never hand quilted anything larger than a place mat before. and never had i worked on something for such an extended period of time.

and then there were plenty of breaks in the process. i got sick of the quilting process and the crampy, achey fingers that were an unfortunate side effect. i didn't want to finish binding it off after discovering that my math was wrong and i hadn't made enough binding in the first place. but i finished it, bottom line.

this 'never have i ever' and 'i'll do it tomorrow' style of quilting led to a few mistakes - i'm not happy with all of my fabric choices. there are some places where my quilting gets a little wobbly and sparse. but i can call it charming and shabby and ignore the little things that only the quilt's quilter would ever notice.

zig zag quilt
zig zag quilt
zig zag quilt
zig zag quilt

and now we sleep underneath it every night.
frankie jumps on it every morning,
i photograph it in fields of tomatoes,

and i love it in all of its 'first quilt' glory.