Here a stache, there a stache, everywhere a stache stache

It may seem like I dropped off the face of the earth, but really, I was just swallowed whole by December. I feel like I have been going non-stop for weeks! And yet, I did manage to finish and deliver the mustache quilt…

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I did go back and add another row- a solid, light pink. I feel like it softened the quilt. The center row of teal really looks lost in this photo, but I feel like it pops more in real life.

m 2I also added an inner border of one of my fave Tula prints, from the Acacia line. The green is flecked with very light grey, just right for this project- and the extra row helps to keep the mustache chevrons from bleeding into the mustache outer border. Two borders- how very traditional of me!

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The back is a super soft and fluffy green minky- leftover from the back of my Aunt’s quilt. I did MUCH better with the minky this time. I googled the heck out of it, and got lots of great tips for working with it. I made certain NOT to stretch it taut, and I pinned the sucker within an inch of its life. I followed that up with my now-standard cross hatch quilting, and I’m quite happy with the result.

m 4As it its new owner! World, meet Olive. Olive arrived in this world around 12 weeks early, but she came safely home from the hospital after just over 9 weeks- just in time for Thanksgiving! I was able to take her (and her family) this quilt in person, and meet her. She’s so strong and feisty- such a fighter. She’s only got oxygen because our Denver altitude is rough on everyone, especially so slightly underdone little ones. I’m so thrilled for my friend and her family- now ever so slightly bigger- and I hope Olive soon grows big enough to think that this quilt is too small ;-)

Linking up with Finish It Up Friday, Fabric Frenzy Friday , and Crazy Mom Quilts.

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Four out of Four

Finally!

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Teacher baby quilt #4 is done, and delivered… But not yet distributed. They’re planing on handing out the final 2 quilts sometime after Thanksgiving. This baby isn’t due until closer to Xmas.

I love this one, even if my math mistake made it much bigger than I intended. The only thing I might have changed, aside from my addition error, would be the the block 2nd from left on the bottom row. That light pink is the same piece of fabric as the dark pink polka dot in the 3rd block on the 2nd row- but because I cut from 2 different spots, I hit two very distinct parts of the color way. And the lighter part really stands out. But all in all, I do love this one.

I did simple quilting to outline the centers of the blocks, as well as the edges of the blocks. Simple but effective. Well, simple except for having to bury all the ends from the centers. Ugh.

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I had so much fun with these fabrics. But I might have had even more fun with the backing…

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The print? It’s another JoAnns score- I’ve been on a roll.

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The teacher/father-to-be is a huge sci-fi fan, and on back to school night I noticed Star Wars stuff in his room. So this fabric that had been on a shelf for ages jumped out at me. If I hadn’t made that math mistake, I probably could have gotten away without having to piece the back, but the magenta does make it nicely girly.

Now that I’m nearing the end of this baby quilt junket, maybe I can return to my final 15 Tula blocks? Maybe I can finish by the end of December instead of November, and that won’t be too bad…

Linking up with TGIFF, Finish It Up Friday, and Fabric Frenzy Friday.

 

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Stache from Stash

So, all the teacher baby quilts are done (come back Friday to see the final one…). My baby quilt marathon must be over, right? Yeah, not so much.

Sunday found me pulling fabrics for yet another baby quilt.

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Ages ago I picked up that silly mustache print at JoAnns. It might have even been when I got the flannel backing for the teacher quilts. I had no plans for it, but it made me smile. And it was 50% off to boot.

I have a friend who was pregnant and due sometime soon. She was down at the bottom of my baby quilt list, because there were so many babies due before her. But then… This friend developed a rare and terrifying condition that required the baby to be delivered immediately- at 28 weeks. Mom and baby were both touch and go, but now, weeks later, both are doing well. Clearly this teeny little girl (just over 1lb at birth) needs a special quilt.

So she gets the funky mustache fabric, as well as some very vintage Anna Maria Horner that I’ve had stashed for many years, and the magenta solid is actually left over from the backing of the final teacher quilt. I’m trying to decide if I need one more solid. Thoughts?

I happen to have some green minkee leftover from the quilt I made for my aunt earlier this year, so backing is good to go. And I plan to use the magenta solid for binding.

I got this far on Sunday:

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The HSTs measure 4″, so at ten across this will be 36″, a good cuddle size. I was debating adding a thin border of the mustaches- I have enough left. I just have to decide how many rows of chevrons I want to do, and if I want more than one row mustaches…

There’s a shower this weekend, but I’m not sure if I can finish this by then. Cross your fingers for me!

And have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Linking to Sew Cute Tuesday, WIP Wednesday, and Let’s Bee Social.

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It all adds up

Another Friday, another installment in the baby quilt marathon…

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This time, I’ve wrapped up the 3rd baby quilt, which is actually for the first baby girl, the one who was born over the summer. Her dad teaches science and math, and science is his true passion. (I learned this on back to school night). This was the one with tie dyed blocks in 2 different color ways. Putting them together into a Modern Plus Quilt seemed like an excellent idea- both thematically as plusses for a math teacher sounded cute, and stylistically, because I could mix up the colors.

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You can see a close up of the kids’ blocks above. I actually had a lot of fun playing with patterns and fabrics to make them work in the same project. It is quite a collection of scraps and bits from all my years of quilting. My favorite kind of quilt!

I picked the blue Kaffe Fassett polka dot for the binding for a few reasons- it was bold enough to tie the entire thing together, and it matched the amazing backing fabric. I picked up the backing fabric before I even started the quilt. And it doesn’t really match the front, but when you see it, you’ll know why I HAD to use it.

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Yup, it’s science fabric- soft, sweet science flannel fabric. It’s perfect! And that binding ties it all together.

I did my super simple crosshatch quilting. It is fast, and it works so well with this design. The quilt has been dropped off at school, but it won’t be distributed just yet. The thought right now is to finish the final one, and present the pair together.

3 down, one more to go.

Linking up with TGIFF, Finish It Up Friday, and Fabric Frenzy Friday.

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2 down, again in the nick of time!

Babies, babies everywhere… both teacher’s babies that were due 11/9 arrived, safe, healthy and happy, just before their due dates. And aside from the teachers, 2 other friends welcomed babies last week! What a boom!

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And, happily, I got teacher baby quilt #2 done and quilted, and dropped off at school and handed over to the new mom, one whole day before her son arrived! Phew! I showed you this one last week:

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I am so happy with how it came out- bright and cheerful and fun. I used super simple diagonal lines for the quilting. It’s becoming my go to for these simple quilts.

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The binding worked out perfectly. I had just a wee bit more than I needed to both be binding, and also to help make the backing wide enough.

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The pink of the backing looks more red here, but in reality it’s a pretty hot pink (see below). And it’s covered in really fun animals, just like the border on the front. I have no idea who made this fabric- it’s more than 10 years old, and dug out from deep in my stash.

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I think it is gender-neutral enough to be fine for a little boy. The green binding helps…

2 down, 2 to go.

Linking up with Fabric Frenzy FridayFinish It Up Friday and TGIFF.

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The Final Four

2 teacher baby quilts down (one you saw, one I’m saving for friday) and 2 babies born safely and happily, right before their due dates.

Baby #3 is due in December- except really she’s #4 as Baby #1 actually came over the summer, before her dad was the new science teacher. And I decided there was no rush on her quilt, since she already exists without one… Anyway! The point is- December baby girl’s quilt top is DONE.
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I’m having trouble deciding which of these quilt tops is my fave. At first I was certain it was this one, but now I’m not sure. I love it- but I think I love them all pretty darn equally.

But I did have an awful lot of fun playing with different fabrics in this one! There are 8 yellow and 8 purply-pinks.

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There is a bit of everything in there. For real! That hoarded Heather Ross doggy fabric is in with a pink I got from- for real- Walmart many years ago. And there’s a bunch of batiks. And ray guns! The ray guns are extra awesome because this teacher happens to sport an amazing belt buckle that looks like a slightly steampunk ray gun! I love the kids drawings on these blocks- I think that guy right above is a jedi of sorts as that looks like a lightsaber, and someone drew an xmas tree as the baby is due so close to that day. My Annie drew Thor’s hammer. I’m hoping to baste and quilt this one over the weekend…

And don’t forget to come by on Friday to see finished baby quilt #2!

Linking up with Sew Cute Tuesday, WIP Wednesday, and Let’s Bee Social.

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One down in the nick of time…

I finished baby quilt #1 and sent it to school on Thursday, with 3 days to spare before the due date. But the wee one must have known her quilt was done, as she arrived either late Weds night or early Thurs am! Mom and baby are healthy and well, and the quilt will be getting to them when the art teacher pays a visit… Talk about in the nick of time!

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I used the recipe at Crazy Mom Quilts for Economy Blocks with a 4.5″ center. Any issues with the piecing are all me, not the pattern. I mentioned it in a previous post, but it bears much repeating: the squares that were hand dyed by the art teacher ended up being a nightmare to work with! On many, the edges frayed over 1/4″! But to preserve the kids’ designs, I had to leave them be or risk cutting into their art. So I wiggled and eased and fudged, and as a result, my points are so far from perfect it’s almost funny! I have learned so much from this project. Next time we dye yardage and THEN cut it into squares to be decorated, even if it will take longer. Wait, next time?? There can’t possibly be any more babies after this mini-boom!

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Even with all the piecing issues and wonkiness, I think it worked. The purple solids were all from stash, of course. Because I have more purple than anything else, and it seemed to work nicely. I arranged the rows so that the background colors of the blocks went in diagonal lines- it looked sort of like argyle to me, and that made me happy.

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There are 20 blocks; 16 have centers enhanced by the kids and 4 are just dyed, nothing else. My absolute fave is the robot/alien?? in the top left corner… And speaking of robots-

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Kati, the teacher/new mom who received this one, was formerly the science and math teacher. This year, she switched to subbing and being the school’s curriculum coordinator. This allows her to come back part time after the baby… But don’t adorable pink robots seem just right for a slightly girly science teacher’s baby girl?

I did simple straight line quilting with a variegated pink/purple thread that had been sitting around for years. I love the way the quilting looks on the back, but the front probably needed more. It’s much more wrinkly than I would have liked. But at least it’s done and ready to be delivered to the newly delivered ;-)

One down, 3 to go.

Linking up with TGIFF and Finish It Up Friday.

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The Baby Quilt Marathon Continues

All I can say is thank goodness for Netflix! As I have been churning out the 4 baby quilts for teachers at Annie’s school, I’ve also been burning through Sons of Anarchy. I’m almost caught up to the final season. Hoping the violence doesn’t somehow imprint on the quilts…

I had to switch gears. The quilt that was troubling me most, and that I hadn’t started at all, was for the baby that might in fact pop out first. So I got my butt in gear- and finally got inspired.

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I found some old Laurel Burch fabric in my stash- deep purply blue background, with rainbow animals. This baby is the only boy of the 4, and I was worried the fabric was too girly, but then I just went with it. I decided to do 9 patch blocks, featuring the tie dyes squares and rainbow semisolids.

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Each block had 2 or 3 squares by the kids, and the rest plain. I used more of the tie dyed squares in the quilt than all the others- and those frayed edges REALLY gave me trouble. (I couldn’t cherry pick the least frayed of the bunch, and had to deal with some very wonky seams because of this).

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So I went in color order with the squares… and the value balance is totally off, but I’m okay with that. Only one of the colors is an actual solid (the light green) and the rest are batiks or prints that just seem solid… I’m extra excited that the light green was leftover from the last baby quilt I finished- I love having projects linked.

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I threw on the Laurel Burch as a border. I wish I’d made it a little bit wider. But oh well.

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I have some fabulous tribal/art deco-ish fabric for the back. The animals are on a pink background but I think it will be okay…

I also managed to finish the pink and yellow top, but that’s the last baby in line, and so that one can wait for another day.  Now to get this one and the purple one quilted and delivered- as those babies are both due 11/9!

Linking up with WIP Wednesday and Let’s Bee Social.

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Happy Halloween!

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4.5+4.5=12?

You know how everyone always says they love to see imperfect blog posts where the author shows you the mistakes? Well, if that’s your cup o’ tea, I’m about to make you smile…

I’m plugging away at the 4 baby quilts for Annie’s teachers. For baby quilt #1, I made economy blocks by following this recipe from Crazy Mom Quilts. I pulled purple solids from stash for the backgrounds.

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It’s set 4×5. 16 of the blocks have centers enhanced by the kids, 4 are just the tie dye.  It’s for a baby girl, due 11/9. Mom is the former math and science teacher who is transitioning to being the part time curriculum supervisor after baby arrives… Also, please do not look at my points. They are awful. But see below for an explanation as to why you should never cut the squares BEFORE you dye them…

Baby quilt #2 was tricky- the blocks by the kids were in 2 different color ways that didn’t have a ton in common. I decided to use the Modern Plus Quilt Tutorial from In Color Order to enable me to mix in loads of fabrics- trying to make things “go”. I was able to pull some from my scrap bins, and cut some from stash. Bonus: the plus signs- this quilt is going to a little girl born over the summer to the new math and science teacher. Plus signs for a math teacher make me smile! This one is set 10×10, so should finish at 40×40 inches.

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I’m worried about how much easing I had to do while piecing this one. MAJOR lesson learned from this project: don’t cut the fabric squares before the art teacher dyes them. On many, the edges frayed well past the seam allowance area. I would have cut them smaller but we would have lost a lot of the kids artwork then as well :-( Hence the easing… Those wrinkles you can clearly see in the photo are partially the ripples of my high tech design wall, but also partially crooked piecing. Yikes!

But that’s not the mistake I’m talking about. I started the 3rd quilt top over the weekend. I used tutorials for the first 2 tops, but I decided to simply wing it on #3. I pulled some fab backing fabric from my stash, and planned to make 2 borders around each kid block- 1 pink and 1 yellow. I wanted the blocks to finish at 8.5″, or 8 when sewn together…

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(Did I mention that the dad to be, a math and social studies teacher, is a star wars and scifi buff?)

Great idea, right? I was going to set them 4×5. Then I thought I might put the star wars fabric in as sashing with pink cornerstone squares. Sounded awesome. But as I started putting the blocks on the design wall, I realized they looked larger than I planned. Hmmmm.

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So I pulled out a ruler. I’m so brilliant, I made them all 12.5″ instead of 8.5″. WTF? How did I do that. Oh. I see. I added on the width of my fabric borders but didn’t take into account that the measurements needed to be doubled as they were on all sides of the squares. Go me.

So no sashing, as there are 16 of these blocks (I’ll be only using the centers the kids made, no adding in any plan tie dyed squares!) It’s going to end up 48″x48″  without sashing or borders… Instead of doing all the blocks w/center squares followed by pink followed by yellow, I’m doing 8 pink/yellow and 8 yellow/pink. I’ll set them alternating, and throw the star wars stuff on the back and all will be will. But boy do I feel dumb!

Meanwhile, I got a sweet and polite email from the art teacher wondering how the quilts were coming along. Time to get my ass in gear. 2 babies are due 11/9… and I don’t know if I’m going to make it in time…

Time for a bit of happy news: WE HAVE A NEW ROOF!! It was installed Friday last. Gutters go on tomorrow. And the internal repairs to the house started TODAY! I might have my house back by November! Please keep your fingers crossed that the internal repairs go smoothly.

Linking up with Sew Cute Tuesday, WIP Wednesday, and Let’s Bee Social.

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