Sunday, December 18, 2011

A Manly Log Cabin

  Well, this has been quite a week.  I'm officially in the pre-Christmas frenzy of finishing up making gifts, shopping, and trying to wrap up things at work for a nice long 11-day vacation (Hallelujah!).  But I've also been trying to be sure to make time to still spend quality time with my husband and son, since that's what the season is all about!

  For our Triad Modern Quilt Guild meeting last Tuesday, we had a potluck and handmade ornament swap. It was so fun to be able to chat with the ladies, and the variety of the ornaments was amazing!  This is the one I made, modeled on our tree:

  It turned out much bigger than I had planned in my head, but the recipient seemed to really like it, so I'm happy with it.  I also really liked the one I got!

  In addition to a few other gifts which I haven't been able to get decent pictures of yet, I also finished the "manly" log cabin for my father-in-law.  I wish I had gotten some pictures of the his-and-hers quilts together before they were washed and wrapped, but that just means I can force them to model them for me :)  Watch out for some funky pics, these were taken near sunset with crazy winds.

  I am really happy with how this one turned out, even though it is so different from my normal style.  I like the traditional colors with the traditional pattern, and it's always nice to work outside of your comfort zone.  I debated quilting thread colors for ages, and then when wandering around the fabric store, I found a tan-burgundy-navy variegated thread.  It blends in perfectly - it was meant to be! 

  The back is a solid navy blue flannel, which makes this quilt extra warm and snuggly.  I think my father-in-law will appreciate that, as he is diabetic and constantly complains about being cold.  I can't wait to give my in-laws their quilts on Christmas Eve!

  I still have to finish a few other projects, but shopping and most of the wrapping is done.  I'm hoping I'll actually be able to relax the last couple of days before Sunday - doubtful, but we'll see!

  Hope that everyone has a great week leading into Christmas!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

MIL Quilt - Finished Christmas Gift

Well, I finally did it - finished a Christmas gift! I have lots more to do in the next 12 days (12 days - eek!), but I am really excited about this one.

My mother-in-law's log cabin quilt is finished. I think the green and purple are really pretty together, and I hope she will love it. This is not really my usual style at all as the fabrics are pretty traditional, but I am very excited to have this one done and like it much more than I expected to. I might even have to steal it back if she doesn't like it!

The backing is a pretty hydrangea print that pulls in the greens and purples from the front along with a light blue. Pretty pretty!

I stippled it all over with a medium purple thread that matches the log cabins. It doesn't show up much at all on the back, which is some parts is a very good thing! (Note to self - do not quilt after midnight on a weeknight...).

The binding is the same Kona purple (grape maybe?) that is used in the cabin centers and the inner border. I think it frames the quilt nicely.

I am sooo glad to be able to at least mark one gift off my list. Now I just have the manly version of this quilt for my father-in-law, a wallhanging for my mom, a pillow for my brother, handkerchiefs for my grandma....Ugh - on second thought, maybe I shouldn't list everything out all at once!

Happy sewing, hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season!

Friday, December 2, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

Hooray for the Christmas season! And no, it didn’t start in October, although retailers wanted to make us think it did.
We rearranged the living room and put up our indoor Christmas stuff last weekend, and it makes whole room seem different and cozy. Evan (my son) was ecstatic about getting the stuff out, and was determined to “help” put up the decorations. A few broken ornaments later and here we are – although we are still trying to convince him that ornaments have to stay on the tree and not be taken off and banged on various surfaces.

Note the un-bound (un-binded?) couch on the sofa – slacker alert! But it does match our living room perfectly and in my defense I don’t have the right shade of brown I want to use for the binding. Guess that’s another excuse to go fabric-shopping! I’ll have to make a post about this one when it’s actually finished.
I'm also really excited that I was able to actually have my quilt rack on display. It even got in on the Christmas decoration action!....yes, I am a huge dork.

I did manage to add some homemade Christmas stuff this year. A couple of nights ago I put the binding on this table runner (November 30 – pre-December – woop woop!).

I have been admiring hexagons for a long time, but I avoid hand-sewing like the plague so I didn’t think I’d ever really have much of a project with it. But I found several tutorials online on how to sew them completely by machine using set-in seams. I cut some 4.5 inch hexagons from a set of 5 fat quarters and got to work. It actually wasn’t that hard, just required a bit more time and thought than normal piecing, and I really like the way it turned out. Maybe one day I’ll tackle a bigger hexie project!

Here's hoping for a joyful and low-stress holiday season!