Monday, October 21, 2013

Halloween Quilt

Look what I finally got!  A Kona Cotton Color Card.  Say that 3 times really fast.  haha
I've been wanting one for some time and I love looking at it.  I think it will be really useful the next time I go to order solids.  I already have a list of the ones I want first.

And now for a quilty finish.  Ta da!  I finished the Halloween panel that my dh wanted me to quilt for him.  It's been hanging in his office doorway for about a week now.  He's already gotten compliments on it which makes me feel good.  It was a good chance for me to practice free motion quilting and also stopping and starting (which I really stink at) since I didn't have to piece it.
I did how ever, piece the back together with Halloween fabrics that I've had laying around for some time.  The orange is Kona Solid in orange.  I bound it with an orange fabric called Marble Swirls by Moda.  

Here is an up close and personal of the quilting.  I used a gray and black variegated thread from Sulky that is 100% Rayon.  I usually use polyester or cotton thread to quilt with but this is a wall hanging so hopefully, that thread will be ok.   I couldn't find the Mettler thread that I wanted at Hancock's and didn't have time to drive across town to my LQS.  I did this alien finger quilting on the big square in the middle and a meandering stitch on the rest.
 This is the first time I've done a meandering stitch and I have to say, I don't like it.  I don't see myself using it again anytime soon.  It was more difficult and time consuming than I thought it would be and not fun at all.  I was really wishing I had continued with the alien fingers but I didn't want to take out all those stitches to start over.  Live and learn.
Now for the finale.  A picture of my son this past Saturday on his 15th birthday.  He's the best kid in the world and I love him so much.
I'm getting ready this week for the Houston Quilt Festival which is next week.  This will be my second year to go and I'm sooooo excited.  I'm going for 5 days - although one is a half day which is Sunday and I'm coming home that afternoon.  I have classes scheduled every day and I'm trying to prepare for those.  Plus, I made something special that I will try to share later this week.

Thanks for dropping by and happy quilting!

**Linking up to Sew Many Ways**

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

WIP's for Wednesday - a quick update

It's Wednesday again and I thought I'd make a quick post to update the progress of some of my WIP's from this post.

WIP #1 was my Halloween quilt wall hanging that my DH requested for his office.  
I'm almost done with the quilting.  I thought I'd finish today but I had to shop at Macy's run errands.  I want to have it completely finished by Monday so he can take it to work.

My WIP #2 was to finish some items for my etsy shop and I did finish the stack I was working on but now it's time to start more.

WIP #3 was the homecoming mum which I finished and wrote about in my previous blog post.

WIP #4 was the stack of HST blocks that I have been slowly trimming.  When I last posted about them, they looked like this on my design board:
I've trimmed a few more and rearranged them and now they look like this:
One of the first modern quilts I saw was a version of this but in Christmas fabrics by Basic Grey.  I LOVED it and have wanted to make one ever since.  I'm not for sure that these blocks will stay like this but I'm really liking it so far.

WIP #5 was my cross quilt.  I haven't made anymore blocks for it although I do have a stack of fabric waiting for me to cut it so that I can make the final 6 blocks.

And of course, now I have a WIP #6.  
I've started a fall table runner using a stack of mini charms called Wrens and Friends by Moda.  I don't have a fall table runner and I thought I could whip this one up while it's still fall.  Especially since we, just this week, started having temps below 90 degrees. 

That's my progress this week on my WIP's.  I've got my fingers crossed that I will actually have a finish soon.  Maybe. 

*linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced**

Monday, October 7, 2013

Homecoming Mum - Texas Style

In my last blog post, I mentioned that Homecoming week was coming up at my son's school (it was last week).  Therefore, it was my responsibility to make (or buy) a homecoming mum for his lovely date that he had asked to the Homecoming dance.  He's only a freshman and this was his first time to ask a girl to be his date.  It was a very nerve wracking time.  Her name is Claire.
In my quest to find instructions and ideas on the internet on how to make a mum, I discovered that not everyone celebrates Homecoming week or wear huge, giant mums on their chest.  Apparently, it's a Texas thing though I did discover that a few other states do it too like Oklahoma, Louisiana and I think Arkansas.  I had no idea that this wasn't something that everyone did.  I grew up in Texas and I never really thought about what other states did for Homecoming.

Anyhoo, in Texas the girls wear mums bigger than their heads (usually given to them by their dates or by their parents) and the boys wear garters on their arms that are a smaller version of the girls (given to them by their dates as well).
So, I thought, I'm crafty.  I can make the mum.  And so I did.  And it turned out WAY better than I thought it would.  I didn't make one of the giant ones - it wasn't bigger than her head.  It was about the same size as her head (lol).  Some of the mums are so big and heavy that they have to be worn with a ribbon around their necks instead of pinned to their shirts.  Some have 12 or 15 flowers on them and they light up.  Can you believe it?  I just thought it was nuts.

I was determined to make a normal size tasteful mum.  So, I set out to Hobby Lobby and proceeded to buy one or two of everything they had in the mum making department.  I have enough stuff left over that I can make one for next year.  I think I might have over bought, eh?  HaHa
Here are the up close and personal pictures of the finished product.
 My dear friend Robyn who is a veteran mum maker, told me to be sure and shop the scrapbooking sections and the Christmas department for anything that I could use.  Lots of times it's cheaper in those areas than in the mum making section.  I got the green sparkly ribbon in the Christmas area and then wrapped it around the white ribbon.  I also got the sparkly C in scrapbooking.  (thanks Robyn for all your great tips!!)

 Sparkly silver footballs. 
Some people make the mums out of other colors like maybe the girl's favorite color or they use a theme or something.  Since this was my first time, I just stuck to the school colors of green and white.  Also, it's very popular to attach a stuffed animal into the center of the flower.  I thought her initial was prettier and classier.
 The white ribbon says "class of 2017" and I made the green and white loopy ribbon and spelled out Homecoming 2013 in silver sparkly letters.  You can see some of the trinkets that are attached in this picture. 

 Lots more trinkets, lots of ribbon.  I used silver glitter jingle bells from the Christmas dept.
 I hand applied this silver scrollwork to the white ribbon one Friday night while my DH and son were at a football game.

 The green ribbon has silver letters that spell out "Claire" with glitter stars and footballs.
And here is the whole end product.  It was about 3 1/2 feet long and was a lot heavier than I thought it would be.  I finally just had to make myself stop adding things to it.  
This is my son's garter which Claire gave to him.  The tradition is for the boy and girl to wear their mums at school all day on Friday and then to the football game that night.  The homecoming dance was on Saturday and they don't wear them to the dance.  

It was such a fun week for the kids and I'm so glad a good time was had by all.  AND, the football team won their homecoming game which just made everyone more festive.

And that, my friend, is how you make a homecoming mum in Texas.  :)

**Linking to Quilt Story - see button on side bar **