Friday, October 11, 2013

2013 Mission Accomplished!

So it's pretty well established that I am a horrible blogger. ;) I don't say that to be down on myself, just to acknowledge that this is not my top priority right now, and that means a lot of life 'stuff' generally gets in the way. Honestly, I have no idea how some quilty bloggers do it keeping up with family, kids, friends, jobs, and creating beautiful quilts and crafts. Simply amazing! Anyhow...

So what have I been doing? Well on the life side of things I've been working a ton all while holding my breath as Zach finishes up nursing school. He completed his last practicum (like and internship) shift at the hospital this past week, so now all that is left is to take his boards. Hooray! There were moments of doubt that we would both make it through the program mentally intact, but we survived, and now my handsome, caring, and oh so patient man gets to work his dream gig. That's some seriously good stuff right there!

And of course, I've been sewing. There are a whole bunch of things I could fill in this part here, but what I really want to share is that I accomplished a goal that I set out for myself back in January. It wasn't a true New Year's resolution, but a year long goal none-the-less. The mission was to create a quilt for each of my girlfriends for their birthdays! There are six of us all together and we have all known each other for years. The best way I can describe us is as sisters. None of us are perfect and none of our relationships are perfect, but we are absolutely there for each other. We are all different, work different jobs, have different home lives... Let's just say we cover the spectrum! I love these women, and am so happy to have them in my life, and what better way to celebrate that than with a quilt! So here they are (in no particular order).

I will start of here with Megan's birthday quilt. I've know Megan the shortest amount of time, but I adore her spunky personality and her absolute devotion to her boys. She's a seriously busy mom, so we don't get to see her nearly enough, but when we do she's always got a smile on her face. Her fun batik quilt matches her fun side (and also her new bedroom)! This was my first 'jelly roll race' quilt top, and was also one of the first quilts that I free-motion quilted. Very scary when I started, but I've discovered it's way easy and I wonder why I haven't been doing it all along!

Next up on the list is Donna's Quilt. At the beginning of this year I emailed all girls and asked them for their favorite colors, patters, etc. I'm not sure they all knew what it was for, but I just went with what I got back. Well, what I got back from Donna was: "...I like flying pigs in any color, hearts, polka dots, Xs and Os, and weenie dogs..."  HA! She really did it to me this time. But I pressed on, and came up with what I think fit the bill. It may be a little hard to see in the picture, but I covered all her requests and made sure the backing was entirely covered in weenie dogs! Lesson: be careful what you ask for! This was my first experience with rough edge applique. I wasn't sure how I would like it, but after I pulled it out of the dryer I fell in love with the 'shabby chic' look of the frayed edges. By far, one of my favorite quilts I've ever made.

I've known Kristie that longest of all the girls, and am happy to be celebrating with her as a bridesmaid in her upcoming wedding. She said jewel tones, so I went in that general direction, with a few twists. I found the bold floral print first, and it just seemed to fit her so well that I played the rest of the colors off that. I started doing a disappearing 9 patch, but decided it needed to be spruced up, so I stitched and sliced a few blocks a different way and ended up with this surprise! :) She loved it, and was so excited to get a picture that night of her and he new little kitties all snuggled up together on it! Seriously adorable!

Michelle's was probably the toughest to come up with, although I'm not really sure why. Odd how that happens. So anyhow, when I had a random thought I just went with it! She didn't have a specific request for pattern, but I thought back to her wedding a few years back which had the theme of All We Need Is Love. That combined with her love of trees I came up with this fun quilt. The adorable striped pattern backing had stripes of the woodgrain, little flowers, mushrooms, and lines that looked almost like ribbon. I love that fabric and used every last bit of it. I'm really happy with how this one turned out and I think she likes it as well.

Susan wanted something a little more muted (and my eyes appreciated the break LOL). She asked for small flowers, beige, white, and gray. I wasn't really sure I could pull this off seeing as I'm a little addicted to brights, but I started at the fabric store and came across just the right floral print. Again, I know you can't see it super well in the photos, but it combined all those requests and more. I added in the green and a few other small scale prints that brought out the pale yellow in the print all based on what I was sure would go with her house. This was the last one I just wrapped up last week after a crazy 3 quilts in 3 weeks month. I was concerned I would run out of steam, but I didn't, and this is one of my favorites of the year. It's simple, but it just works, and I'm happy to say I made a plan and stuck with it all the way through! That's a serious accomplishment for me! This is also the first quilt I've done where I'm 100% happy with my machine binding! Yay!
 So there you have it... MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! Funny thing is I was doing this for them, but I learned so so much in the process. I still consider myself a very novice quilter, so it was nice to have a reason to experiment and try new things. I made a bunch of mistakes along the way, but those teach the absolute best lessons. I might be pretty low on the blogger scale, but I'm feeling okay on the friend scale. Like I said these women are my family here and I'm so glad that I was able to stitch each of them up a little love to have in their homes.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! What a goal you set, and what a great achievement! I can't believe you managed all this, and worked full time. You really set yourself to the task, didn't you? Every one of the quilts is lovely, but it's even lovelier to know the spirit with which you made them. They're fortunate friends to have you in their lives. Just an all 'round fine job. Now what will you do with all your free time?! Blog more? Ha! Sew more, I'd guess.