Thursday, April 3, 2014

Sew Mama Sew - 22 Favorite Quilt Blocks

Hey Everyone! I am super psyched to announce that my Honeycomb block was chosen as one of the 22 favorite quilt blocks for the Sew Mama Sew Do Your Own (DYO) sampler quilt. From their website...

"Debbie Jeske from A Quilter’s Table found 22 Favorite Quilt Blocks for you to incorporate into your DYO Sampler Quilt! Pick and choose from these stunning blocks, and make the sampler quilt of your dreams.You’re the designer."

I can't wait to see my block pop up in a few sampler quilts. The tutorial is free and on my blog. If you would like a go at the honeycomb block just clicky-poo here. I have made the block in several color schemes see below (full post here).

Nubees Aug12- for pemiddleton Nubees Aug12- for runs w/ scissors Nubees Aug12- for shimmyblisster Nubees Aug12- for aedesigned

Please check out the SMS links above. There are many beautiful blocks to chose from and maybe you will be inspired to make your own sampler quilt. The best thing about a sampler quilt is you don't have to choose just one! If you use my block, I would love to see a picture of it. Please message me about it or tag me on instagram @sewhungry

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Korea Trip Part 2: Americana/Koreacana quilt for a friend {A finished Quilt}

This is part 2 of 4 chronicling my experiences in South Korea. I came back earlier this month from a 10 day trip to South Korea and thought I would share some of my experiences with you that tie in with sewing and quilting. Of course, through a quilter's eyes, everything can spur inspiration or remind you of something sewing related. This will be at least a 4 part series.

Part 1: Quiltspirations - quilting ideas inspired by things I saw during my visit
Part 2: A finished quilt I made for a Korean colleague and now a new friend
Part 3: Trips to the Dongdaemun fabric market and Happy Quilt fabric shop
Part 4: Fabrics I purchased at Happy Quilt

A week or two before I left for South Korea my hubs requested that I make a quilt for coworker of his. One of the fellows on his team was a sweet young woman named Sun Bean (cutest name ever) who really helped Juan feel at home in Korea. She took him to lunch and dinner many times and since she is his senior paid for everything. In Korea the seniormost member at the meal pays. No exceptions. Do argue. Just say thank you. Anyway, he wanted to repay Sun Bean for her kindness and she was recently married. A quilt seemed perfectly appropriate! Juan requested a quilt with a traditional Americana feel and I knew exactly what I wanted to do.

Being short on time I decided to do some large 7" (final size) HSTs. I selected fabrics leftover from a salt air layer cake (Cosmo cricket for Moda which I won at last year's The Stash Bash) and mixed in some complementary prints and mirage almost solids (from connecting threads). The color scheme was muted(ish) in blue, red, yellow/gold and green.

The layout is a 6 x 8 grid with a 6" border. Normally I'm not a border-er but the busy prints and random layout here was screaming out for a border. I love the woven look of the blue print I chose. The back is a small-scale red flower print on a cream background. It was interesting, traditional, and calmed down the front of the quilt. The binding is some salt air yardage I also had. It is a multicolored floral print that ties everything together.

I decided to hand-tie rather than quilt it. I had never hand-tied before and thought that would add to the overall traditional Americana look I was going for. I used 6 strands of a red DMC embriodery floss, meaning I didn't unravel the floss). I am so glad I looked up a few tutorials because it is a lot easier than I thought it would be. I was going to cut little pieces of floss and thread them individually through the quilt and tie as I go. But, it is so much easier to basically do a really wide baste stitch with the thread or yarn and then cut halfway in between each stitch and tie at the end. I can't find the specific tutorial I used by here is this tutorial by The Last Piece which is essentially the same. 

I would use this technique again. It was a nice change from quilting. I wish I could have used bulkier yarn for the job but I had a hard time pulling the needle through when I tried. Any advice on that?

Here is the finished quilt all folded up on a chair. It feels so Laura Ingalls Wilder to me.

Of course, when I go to Korea I realized I had inadvertently used a very traditional Korean color palette. See the painted architecture below. Even the blue border print echos some of the woodwork patterns seen in the traditional buildings here. Oh well. That is why in the end I chose to name the quilt Koreacana.

Quilty stats:
Name: Koreacana
Size: 54" x 68"
Fabrics: Salt Air (Moda), mirage near-solids (connecting threads) various other prints.
Pieced with Aurifil 2200 and hand-tied with a red DMC embroidery floss
Hand stitched the binding (another salt air print) for an extra special touch

It is now living overseas in Korea. On a happy couch. Next to a giant stuffed bear. The end.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Korea Trip Part 1: Quiltspiration

Hello! Remember me? I did not intend to let the blog lapse for a month (and more) but I have been busy. I came back earlier this month from a 10 day trip to South Korea and thought I would share some of my experiences with you that tie in with sewing and quilting. Of course, through a quilter's eyes, everything can spur inspiration or remind you of something sewing related. This will be at least a 4 part series.

Part 1: Quiltspirations - quilting ideas inspired by things I saw during my visit
Part 2: A finished quilt I made for a Korean colleague and now a new friend
Part 3: Trips to the Dongdaemun fabric market and Happy Quilt fabric shop
Part 4: Fabrics I purchased at Happy Quilt

Korean traditional patchwork (Bojagi): Insadong, textile shops pojagi

Korea traditional patchwork is pieced using a french-seam like technique so that the front and the bag is neat and functional. The patchwork is usually abstract, wonky and with a lot of negative space. Very pretty! You can purchase these textiles in Insadong or other crafty/touristy areas in Seoul. They are traditionally used to cover food and other household duties.

Quilt show in Insadong: There was a quilt show going on in the basement of one of the buildings in Insadong. I wouldn't have even noticed it if it wasn't for this sign:

It was only a few quilts but they were spectacular! I apologize I do not have the credits for the artist who made these quilts on hand. I will try to find out her information. These were all made by one woman in Korea.
The background was completely pieced from diamonds and then the curved shapes were appliqued on top. So much work went into this. I cannot fathom it.

Spring and summer views out a window. There were two other "windows" next to these which showed the same view during the fall and winter.

Beautiful use of value in these blocks

A patchwork quilt of the famous Klimt Kiss painting!!!

Cathedral windows with again an amazing use of value.

Architectural inspiration:

The buildings in Seoul, both old and new offered inspiration for future projects.

The dynasty palaces were painted in beautiful colors: red, yellow, green, blue, black.

Even the subway doors offered inspiration. I think these designs would make very interesting quilt blocks.

My trip to Seoul gave me a lot of quiltspiration. I hope these pictures give you some too! Stay tuned for the rest of my Korea Trip posts. Not that I am an expert, but, if you plan on going to South Korea I would love to chat beforehand I can give you more details about where to go!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Rainbow Cabins

I got this idea for a baby quilt and it wouldn't go away. It started like this...

I wanted to make some big-ass-rainbow-text-fabulous log cabin blocks. I started with a 3" center block and alternated rings of solids with rings of black, white and cream prints. And voila! One side goes from orange to blue and the other goes in reverse. I can't say which is the front and which is the back because I love them equally.

I do have to say that the process of making 48" log cabins kinda sucks. I don't think I am going to do it again any time soon. But it really was worth it...just this once. 

My puppy overloads were watching me every moment and cracking the whip so I would get it just right.

"baste around us"

"Quilt faster...and I want kibbles"

Then I free motion quilted the heck out of it. I'm calling this design sound waves. I drew waves with a frixon pen and then quilted a squiggly line between the pen lines. This figure sums it all up perfectly. 

Once it is finished it forms a lovely diamond pattern which you can see in the morning light in the photo below. This photo was taken before washing, after washing the overall pattern became more subtle.

Both sides:

Quilting up close:

I'll be linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts and TGIFF.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Starry Pouch for A Friend

I am a terrible post office goer. I made a little pouch for a friend in May and then I stuck it on top of some envelopes to mail later. Fast-forward to February and I sent it! And now that Anne at Play Crafts finally got it, I can share it with you here.

I used my star patchwork piecing tutorial with reds orange and purples. This time I made the background transition from white to black.

I love the way it looks side-by-side:

 I even embroidered her logo on the front and hand quilted around the stars in complementary threads.

Some more photos of the front and back of the pouch.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Another Another Quilted Tote

I made another quilted tote. Can't get enough of these. A co-worker requested a tote in earth tones. Not exactly my normal color scheme but the autumnal colors were so perfect in tune with the season when I started this in October. Fast forward a few busy months and voila!

Once again I used the Garfunkel paper pieced block from the block rock'n series over at  627handworks and modified the market shopping bag pattern from Leanne at She Can Quilt. For the other side I used some mirage solids from connecting threads with a smattering of squares using the background fabric, essex yarn dyed linen in flax.

I was able to piece it together at the Bham MQG meeting. But the lining fabric I brought to quilt with was too small (wah, wah). So, it sat in the closet until last weekend. Then in a surge of energy I quilted it assembled the bag in a day.

mmm wavy lines of goodinessitude.

 The lining pulls from the earthy tones on the outside but also packs a bit of a punch with the pink and yellow. I also added 4 pockets for better organization.

It's huge. Aka the perfect size for library trips with the kids or hauling everything a college professor needs on any given day.

I love how the quilting looks on the back. It's so...faux bike paths.

This semester is going to be even busier than last but I will make some attempts to blog when I can. 

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

A season of giving

I am wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. This year at my house, the Holidays are going to be low key and hopefully stress free! My hubs and I traditionally go to see his family in El Salvador on alternating winters and this was supposed to be a year to go. But we have had a busy busy semester with him interviewing all over the country for residency positions. Next semester will be just as busy with his away rotation to Korea and my heavy teaching load. I am thankful we will get to spend a quiet day at home just enjoying each other's company and playing board games (once I leave the lab...yeast wait for no beast!)

I've been meaning to share two special quilts I made this year for charity. I try to make sure I make 1-2 charity quilts every year as one of the ways I give back. I wasn't sure where to send these quilts originally and I sat on them for a while. But then I remembered that Chick-fil-A sets up a Christmas tree sponsored by the salvation army in December for kids donations. You can  pick any number of kids and bring in a gift for them. I chose a 1 yr. old boy and 1yr. old girl to give these quilts:

Boy quilt - I used up the rest of my scoot transportation fabric to make this cute rectangle quilt. I love the backing fabric I chose here too. It's a perfect complement to the front.

For the quilting I decided to try something different and I free motion quilted different angular shapes with a variegated Aurifil thread.

Here is the girl quilt:

This is my own pattern that I am calling fractal. It is actually made up of 16 identical blocks rotated to form this pattern. I quilted it with a giant spiral starting in the center which is why it looks a little puffy in the center in the picture below... or maybe that is because it was folded up for months before I decided to photograph it and I didn't iron it.

The back is made of wonky cross-cutting strips. Pretty psychedelic.

Merry Christmas little boy and little girl. I hope you like your presents!!