6.27.2008

Triangle Woes

So I cut all the pieces out for my shoofly quilt blocks. The book doesn't give much instruction on the blocks, just that the finished size of the block should be 9".


Knowing that I need 1/4" seam allowances, I cut all the squares at 3 1/2" x 3 1/2". Then I cut more of the same size and just cut them in half for the diagonals. This is the result:


The pieces with the triangles ended up being MUCH smaller than just the block pieces. Which bothers me, because when I was cutting the blocks I wondered if there would be a difference, so I checked in the Grandma's Best book (the one that had this pattern), and couldn't find anything on it. Now, doing research AFTER the fact, I found this in The Joy of Quilting:
"Cut a square once diagonally to yield two half-square trianges...To determine
the size square to be cut, add 7/8" to the finished short side of a
triangle. For example, to cut two triangles with a finished short side of 3",
cut a square 3 7/8""

So now I'm at a loss. I'm wondering if I can decrease their seams to 1/8" and up the ones on the squares to make it more "even". Also I'm looking at the Joy book and seeing that the side and corner triangles I cut to frame the "block" portion of the quilt may also be to small. . .

Suggestions?

6.19.2008

The WIP that was



Everyone has that one stupid WIP that they started and have yet to finish. The project that seemed like it would be quick to finish, the project that seemed not to be impossible, the project that just wasn't...you.

My personal Behemoth was a quilt that has been sitting in my attic, 80% finished, for four years. It was my graduation project that I was supposed to finish in 11th grade, but since I had no idea how to actually quilt the monstrosity, I *cringe* stapled it together and left pins in it so it was usuable as a prop for my presentation. Now I've completed my junior year of college, and I finally decided to take the poor thing out of the attic.

I have been tackling it on and off for the past month or so. Challenges: stinkbugs (I dunno what they're really called), both living and dead, were in and on the blanket. Ew. I appliqued stars all over the quilt before I actually knew how to applique, so I spent about 3 hours seamripping the darn suckers off. You know the old "measure twice, cut once?" Well I never measured the back piece (this was my first quilt), so it's a jagged edge that results in the quilt not having jagged edges of its own. And finally, the quilting process itself. My machine is not cut out for detailed quilting (especially without a quilting foot), so all attempts turned out shy of disasterous.

In the end, I put a wave design on the border and zigzag stitched the small squares between posts. The net result is a stellar quilt (pun intended) with not a whole lot of quilting. The final test for this quilt is a run through the washing machine to get rid of attic smell residue, quilt pencil markings, and an overall stress test for the sucker. I'll have pictures up tomorrow.

That being said, I can now start on my next quilt. This will be my third quilt (I never put up pictures of my mother's day quilt), and will be for my sister as she goes off to college. The pattern is from Grandma's Best Quilt Blocks. I absolutely love this book. The pattern itself is called Shoo-fly andI'm doing it in green and yellow. She's going off to school at Boston in the fall, so I hope it will keep her warm.

6.07.2008

Bookmark Bonanza, Part Deux

Okay, so I got 4 more finished, but my order got bumped up to 15, so I'm kinda at the same place I was last post. =P No matter, I'm excited to have new projects in the works. I have pictures of bookmarks 4-7, as well as their coordinated backs.





Most importantly, I made my labels! They are stitched on the back of each bookmark, and they look superb! They have this sleek, modern look to them. I chose the name "moegen" because it's surprisingly one of my nicknames, and it means "to like" in German. My camera wasn't cooperating with zooming in, so it's a little blurry. I think, however, it looks great. =)

6.06.2008

Bookmark Bonanza

After making a homemade bookmark for my boyfriend's mom for her birthday, I tenatively added as a list of things I could make. Right now I want to start building up various ideas of homemade things I could make and then sell. I'm hoping to get enough stuff to start at a flea market, and if I actually seem to have a market, I'm hoping to sell my creations on Etsy.

However, until such a day comes, I'm kinda going by word of mouth and making things as people want or need them. My current "order" is to make 11 bookmarks. Once my bf's mom saw the bookmark, she wanted me to make more as end-of-the-year gifts for people at her youngest son's school. I'm excited because this is my first real customer, and because I have all the creative freedom in the world when it comes to making these. They are all 2.5" by 7.5" and have some sort of tassle, (and with the exception of 2) and they are all completely unique. So without further ado, I present bookmarks 1-3 of my collection.

My biggest concern right now is to come up with a label that I can discreetly put on the back to get my idease "out there" (for lack of a better word). I know that Grumperina has a great tutorial on making your own labels, but before I can do that, I need to come up with a name of sorts.

6.01.2008

Turning a heel and Sunday Surprises

For my first knitting project, I wanted to do something a little more complex than a typical project (that's just the type of person I am), so I went with a sock on dpn. Since I follow Grumperina's blog on a regular basis and have seen the popularity of her jaywalkers, I decided to make a pair for myself. I picked out a lovely variegated fall-colored yarn (I can't find the tag at the moment, but it the colorway was called "gold rush") at a local yarn store. Considering how far along I am now, I think the fall colors will be appropriate for their finished date. To be honest, I probably bit off a little more than I can chew with this pattern. Although I've had to take out several rows at a time because either the double decrease didn't work or something just seemed off, I can say that I am progressing forward.

For me, the most interesting part (aside from how simple the actual pattern is yet how complex it looks) has been turning the heel. At first I thought I read the directions wrong because only a few stitches are knit at a time. However, with some faith in the patter (and now some hindsight), it makes sense. Everything is pulled together in a sort of zig-zag fashion, where every row incorporates an extra stitch until they are all accounted for.

Now with all the talk, I'll give you a picture of my only knitting WIP, my jaywalker sock:



As for Sunday surprises, as I was typing this up, I heard my dad yell "There's a hummingbird in the garage!" Sure enough, there is. We're having trouble getting it out since the bird won't stop flying right near the ceiling, but we are trying. I have a few small pictures that aren't detailed, but I still thought it was an interesting thing. Out of all the animals that we've found in our garage, this is the first time I've ever seen a hummingbird there.