Monday, September 1, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

I was nominated by the lovely Jessica at Quilty Habit to participate in the Around the World Blog Hop!

In addition to the questions, I'll do a brief re-introduction of myself!

I'm Alison, married to Park Ranger Husband, currently looking for a job, have been sewing since my mother let me touch the needles and thread, have been quilting since I was 15, from Michigan, living in Maryland, and I have a bunny named Clara. If you follow me on Instagram, you'll get to see lots of pictures of Clara, sometimes she "helps" with my quilting. I also own and design patterns and quilts with my mom and sister under the name Honey, Bunny, and Doll Quilts. I'm the Bunny of the trio.

Clara inspects my #sewpiecefulbee blocks #littlebunnyquilts

On to the real questions!

1. What am I working on?
A lot of things, actually. The last two days have been spent doing hand binding on a baby quilt (that I will post the finish of tomorrow!) and a gigantic queen sized (or maybe bigger?) quilt that I started an embarassingly long time ago and am just now finishing. It has been sitting in our apartment since May just waiting for binding.

I just finished this one! Hooray!

This is sitting on my floor taunting me right now.

I'm also working on finishing up a set of 12 inch blocks that I made in conjunction with a quilt along that I just hosted. I ended up planning this quilt along to have 12 blocks and I ended up being able to make 25 blocks from the fat eighth bundle that I was using. Hooray! Now I have to figure out how to set it. Here's the first 16 blocks that I posted for tutorials here on the blog:

I am also participating in the Wishes QAL hosted by the Fat Quarter Shop and the Sew Kitschy QAL hosted by Kristi at Quiet Play. Here are my most recent blocks from August:

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I'm not "stuck" making any one type of quilt. I make the quilts that I want to make regardless of how modern/traditional it is. I purposefully try to challenge myself to advance my skills as a quilter and not be stuck in a rut making the same types of quilt over and over again. I purposely learned to paper piece so I could make the Harry Potter Project of Doom.

I also am very apt to take a pattern and use a completely different color scheme. Some quilters aren't always inclined to do that and have always loved the outcome when I've done that. I think it's fun to envision those kinds of things and helps me put my own twist on things. The original pattern for my Twist of Lime quilt showed the quilt in red, white, and blue!

I make a lot of baby quilts because everyone we know is having babies, so I get to try a lot of different patterns and blocks. It also helps me work on my free-motion quilt skills on something I can easily manage on my home machine.

3. Why do I write/create what I do?
As I mentioned before, I create the things I want to create and in the beginning of quilting, every quilt that I made was for myself so I obviously had to like it! Lots of times I'm inspired by one fabric and then build a fabric pile around it and find a quilt to fit it.

As far as writing this blog goes, I started blogging about my quilts and quilting adventures my second year of grad school because I had no one to share it with in real life -- I lived alone, didn't go out much, and most of my grad school classmates would think my hobby was goofy. I try to be as genuine as possible in my writing and be honest when I'm stuck, when I'm having trouble, or if I'm just waiting for the mailman to come with the fabric that I need!

I've been blogging for over three years now, and I'm still not the best at documenting my process. I'll admit it and it's something I'm working on.

4. How does my writing/creating process work?
As far as creating goes, if it is something I am designing from scratch, I do a lot of quilt math. I really, really, really enjoy the math part and I know that's weird! I'll be perfectly honest that I'm a quilter on a budget and I try to maximize what I make with what I have and figure out the best sizes of blocks to use.

Sometimes I get bored making the same block or block unit over and over again for more traditional quilts so I have to switch around and not just sew HSTs for two days straight. That, to me, is torture. I did that  a lot when I was putting the blocks together for my two mystery quilts that I made from Quiltmaker magazine.

I also don't quilt for quantity. We have more quilts than we could ever use and I don't think I'm half as prolific as some of the other bloggers out there. I don't want to make something just to make it, and I'm not interested in mass producing simple quilts.

I write as I go with my projects. I don't usually work on things and schedule posts ahead of time (unless they are QAL posts) and blog about things that I completed weeks ago unless it's something I can't show right away because it is a gift.

I'm nominating Audrey from Hot Pink Quilts and Sarah from Berry Barn Designs!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Interested in swapping 2.5 inch strips?

EDIT: I am going to host another round of this swap! Please head over to Flickr and sign up!

I just wanted to put some feelers out there to see if anyone would be interested in participating in a Jelly Roll strip swap. I hosted a small swap for 2.5 inch strips two years ago and figured it might be time to start swapping again!

Here's a picture from when I was sorting strips to all of the participants! It was a fun process (at least it was to me!)

If you might be interested in swapping 2.5 inch strips -- which can be left over from jelly rolls or cut from your stash -- pop on over to the Flickr group, Orphan Jelly Roll Strip Swap, join the group and leave a comment on the "Interested in a new round?" thread.

I'm hoping people are interested in participating! Last time was a lot of fun and we were able to give everyone a great variety of strips!

Monday, August 25, 2014

More QCQAL Blocks

I've been working on making more blocks out of my Clover Sunshine bundle to go along with the rest of the QCQAL blocks that I've made.

Since some of you have mentioned that you want to make extra blocks too with the fabric you have left, I've linked to the tutorials that I've used to make the blocks.

Double Aster block from the Quilter's Cache: This one is so gorgeous! I think that this would be a fun bee/swap block. There is a partial seam in this one, but it's totally worth it.

Flower Garden Path from Swim, Bike, Quilt: This one is from the Summer Sampler series from 2011. I used the alternate piecing option with the square in the middle instead of using all HSTs. If you don't have big pieces of your focus fabrics, you can use the background in the center.

Rocky Mountain Puzzle: I adjusted the size of the strips and the center square to fit the scraps I had, but the rest of it is the same. I was happy to find a 12 inch version since most of them are 8 inch.

Star Cluster Block from Judy Martin: I saw this one first on Pinterest and loved it. This block takes some patience because you have to keep your colors in order so that things end up in the right spot. The result is gorgeous!

Ohio Star: Classic, quintessential quilt block!

Venus Flytrap: This might be an actual real quilt block somewhere, but at this point I'm dealing with small pieces and have just been trying to maximize the fabric I do have left into making a few more blocks. This one is made from 2 1/2 inch HSTs, 2 1/2 inch squares, and one 4 7/8 inch square cut into two triangles.

I need to make 2 more blocks and then I will have 24 blocks!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

August Sew Kitschy Block and August Sew Pieceful Blocks

Happy Sunday! I've been sort of radio silent this week due to family stuff, a job interview (!!!), and some sort of the cold/flu relegating me to the couch for the last two days but now I'm finally feeling a little better to start getting caught up posting on my projects.

Quiet Play

This month for my Sew Pieceful Bee blocks, I used the Wampum Block pattern from the Quilter's Cache.

I think this is the last month for my peach, mint, and lavender color scheme. I am pretty sure that I have enough blocks. A few are nothing like the colors I requested (so disappointing!) but I think I will use them in a different quilt. I'm thinking about making a "bright pastel" quilt with the ones that don't quite fit into the peach, mint, and lavender scheme and using lots of different colors. Once I get my blocks this month, I'll post a picture of all of my received blocks.

Have a lovely day!

Monday, August 18, 2014

QCQAL Block Party #12

Hello! Welcome to our last block link up for the QCQAL!

Check out Sylvia's and Margaret's 16 blocks!

Keep working on those blocks! I am making as many blocks as I can with what I have left of my Fat Eighth bundle! I'll share the links to the tutorials that I am using for my blocks next week!

Thanks for participating with us! We'll be posting sample setting directions soon!

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