Thursday, August 19, 2010


Remember when I told you I filmed my "aha moment" in this really cool airstream studio a few weeks ago? 

Aha 01

My video is up!  You can go here to see it.

I was so nervous!  They must have really doctored it up, because it's WAY BETTER than I thought it would be. 

Jargon of the Week - Half-Square Triangles

Jargon of the Week

Have you wondered what a half-square triangle is?

A half-square triangle is a square that has been cut in half diagonally.  When you take a square and cut it along the diagonal line shown below, you will get two equal triangles with 45 degree angles in two corners.   
Half-square triangle diagram
Pretty easy, eh?  Go to this link to see how to make them!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hello. Goodbye.

Sorry I haven't been around much lately.  I've been EXTREMELY BUSY! 
I haven't mentioned it much on here, but Jason and I are buying a house.  We close tomorrow; we move Saturday.  So, our world looks a lot like this:

Moving - Fabric Shelves
Empty shelves where fabric once sat.

Moving - Boxes
Boxes stacked where we once had a dining room.

Don't let me fool you... moving isn't all I have going on.  I am still working on a few projects for myself.

Design Wall
My design wall is more bare than usual.

Yucky thread
I tried blue thread with an orange bobbin, didn't work, ripped it out.  I tried orange thread with an orange bobbin, didn't like it.  Ripping out orange thread and have a new method for getting the blue thread to work.  Will like it most definitely.

This is a (really late) father's day gift for my dad.  It's just waiting to be trimmed and bound.  I've entered it into the AIAKC's Art x Architects at the end of the month.  Hope you don't mind too much that it's really late, Dad.

Lily and I have been working on some cool projects for Fabri-Quilt lately.  We're (mostly she naps, so pretty much just me working) working on 2 quilts for them from start to finish.  That means for two different fabric lines, I'm designing a full quilt, making a project sheet, and then making the physical quilt. The two fabric lines I'm making these from are Urban Garden and another line called Flower Power! that isn't on their website yet.  I must say... the two quilts of mine they've given me the go-ahead on are really fun. 

I'm also working on a quilt from another fabric line that somebody else started but won't get to finish. 

All three of these quilts are supposed to be finished by August 23rd.  Since they know that's not going to happen, I can have them finished by August 30th and they'll take them to Las Vegas in a suitcase.  Why won't the 23rd happen?  Well, they just got in touch with me about this project last week. 

I picked up EQ7 and got to work really quickly learning the program as I designed several quilts to send to the nice people at Fabri-Quilt.  They picked a quilt for each of the fabric lines yesterday, so I should get the fabric to get started on these pretty soon. 

See?  I wasn't lying when I said I was really busy.  Forgive me if I'm not around much until next month.

Friday, August 13, 2010

My Aunt June

My friend & fellow KC Modern Quilt Guild member, Lauren writes the blog My Aunt June and runs the etsy shop Aunt June

She makes some really fabulous fabric.  I sent some of her grey boat fabric to my swap partner in the Mini QT Swap last month

Well... why am I telling you about Lauren?  Because she's the featured seller on etsy today!  How great is that?  I loved reading her interview.  I had no idea how many things we have in common.  Let me point out a few of these things.
  • She was a violinist, so was I.  Her violin sounds so much cooler than mine, though.  And I was never in a band; just the nerdy-old orchestra.
  • She was an art major.  I was an architecture major with a LOT of art classes under my belt.  I thought I was close to an art minor, but silly advisors....
  • She likes board games and dinner parties; have I mentioned that we have 5 different Monopoly boards.  Just boards, we also have 2 card games, 1 dice game, and 1 Wii game.  All of the Monopoly variety.  (P.S.  Family, read that as we don't need ANY more Monopoly games.) 
  • She just bought a house.  We close on our house on August18th. 
  • She is a road tripper.  We are road trippers.  Both of our honeymoons were road trips.  Both honeymoons involved Abraham Lincoln in some way. 
  • She likes garage sales.  I LOVE them!
  • In 10 years she'd like to be taller.  Somehow I don't see either one of us getting very far on that one.  Have I mentioned here that I'm pretty short.... five-foot zero and one-half inches. 
See all the things you didn't know about me?  Now, thanks to Lauren's interview, you know all these random facts.  Don't worry, there probably won't be a pop quiz.
Congratulations, Lauren!  Get some sleep and enjoy your day!


Jeanne over at Grey Cat Quilts put up a post discussing my DQS9 mini quilt.  She flickr mailed me asking if she could discuss what she thought was modern about my quilt.  It's always fun to have someone dissect my work... it takes me back to the critiques of my architecture school years.  It forces me to see things from a different perspective and re-think some of the decisions I made along the way.

DQS9 - In progress - Waiting for pins

One of the things I find interesting about when people discuss or comment on my work is the mention of my use of colors.  I've mentioned before that I'm trying to step outside of my box when it comes to color.  I'm really quite scared of mixing them; I usually cheat and just pull colors I like out of a conversation piece.  It's interesting to me that for some reason people seem to think I know what I'm doing.  Maybe people are just trying to be nice, thinking I'll stop talking about being afraid.  Maybe they're hoping I'll build enough confidence and just quit yakking about it.  Ya think?

Head on over to Jeanne's blog and check out what she has to say about my quilt.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Jargon of the Week - Dessert Rolls

Jargon of the Week
I think this will be the last in the fabric size series.  A dessert roll is a little different than all the other pre-packaged options.  When you buy a dessert roll, you get 10 fabrics (usually tonal) in 5" strips.  I suppose this is to supplement another pre-packaged option in a quilt. 

Here are a few examples:

Mill House Inn Dessert RollMill House Inn Dessert Roll

Aster Manor Dessert RollAster Manor Dessert Roll


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sewbot's Favorites - My Mini from Sewgentle

sewbot's favorites

This week, my favorite thing is the July swap with the Mini Quilt Swap on flickr.

I mentioned the July swap here and here  that I joined with the Mini Quilt Swap.   I was lucky enough to be paired with sewgentle this time around.  Check out all the fun stuff she sent to me.

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Mini - Full Front
This is the mini I received.  Isn't she fabulous?  It's from a pattern titled "Regina del Mar".  One of Jason's pet names for me is "del Mar" which means "of the sea" in Spanish.  Regina, is also from the sea!  :)

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Mini - Front - Upper Body
Isn't her crazy hair fun?  I really love her french knot belly button.

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Mini - Front - Details
Check out this embroidery!  Fantastic isn't it?

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Mini - Full Back
Here's the back.

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Loot!
Check out all the bonus stuff sewgentle sent me!

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Grocery List
There was this magnetic grocery list.

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Robot Squares
She picked out these little squares of this robot fabric because it reminded her of my flickr buddy icon (shown below).  Jason has already mentioned that he might like a little of this fabric in his robot quilt.

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Liberty Bell Fabric
Sewgentle lives close to the Liberty Bell.  She used this fabric for Regina's tail and sent me the remainder.  How fun!

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Robot Panel - Full
She sent this fun robot panel by Cosmo Cricket.  I'm thinking it might work it's way into the Robot Quilt I'm working on for Jason. 

Sewgentle's Mini for Me - Robot Panel - Love Bot 
This is my favorite part of the robot panel.  It says "LOVING YOU IS IN MY CODE".  How funny!  You knew I was a nerd right?  This shouldn't come as a surprise that I love funny robot love talk.

Thanks, sewgentle for a fabulous swap.  I had a lot of fun making you the "Seaside" mini quilt.  I had even more fun receiving your "Regina del Mar" mini quilt.  I really enjoyed being your partner this time around.

Also, Happy 2nd Birthday to my nephew, Lucas!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Bee Block for Andrea

Here's the block I made for Andrea for the KC Scrappy Bee.  She asked for pluses and minus using the blue dotted fabric. 

Bee Block for Andrea

I have been trying to overcome my fear of color lately, by using a color wheel for just about everything.  Typically, I use white as the background for EVERYTHING!  Jason convinced me that orange was the right choice here and that I could handle it.  I think it turned out. 

Andrea mentioned that she didn't particularly care if the the blocks were 12.5", but if they added up to that size, that'd be great.  I thought I'd put a bunch of mini blocks together to make a 12.5" block that she can pull apart if she likes.  I thought the mini blocks together were a little more interesting than just a plus or minus sign. 

Want to see the blocks I've made in the bee over the past few months?  Go here to see Nikki's block and here to see the Quilt of Valor Block.

Friday, August 6, 2010


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I've been working on this mini quilt a lot lately. This is one of the last projects I need to finish up before we pack up the studio to move. (We're moving the 21st of August if anybody is interested in relocating boxes with Jason and I.)

DQS9 - In progress - Jess Sewing
Jason snapped this picture of me a few nights ago working on the DQS9 quilt.  I'm trying trapunto for the first time, so I'm stitching around the circles here.  I want to quilt pretty densely around the circles to have them really pop. 

DQS9 - In progress - Waiting for pins
This is where the quilt is currently.  I have it waiting for pins.  I didn't have enough pins for 2 mini quilt projects, so I had to go buy a few more last night.  This is where I left off on it last night.  After I baste it, I'll be quilting it.  I has yet to be trimmed, so don't be concerned about it's irregular shape. 

The back is a little bit crazy.  I made it just like I made the orange wedges.  I used the same orange fabric on the back.  I'm thinking of using orange thread in the bobbin and in the top thread for the orange wedges to help tone it down a bit.  I'm not sure what color thread I should use in the top thread on the black wedge.  I'm not planning on quilting over the circles, but outlining them again to really bring out the trapunto.  Any suggestions on the thread color over the black?

I'm planning to use this method to bind this quilt.  I'm not sure which colors I should use.  I was thinking the same blue fabric I used for the piping separating the orange and black for the the  "piping" in the binding.  What are your thoughts?  Any suggestions?

Go here and here to look back at the progress I've been making on this project.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Jargon of the Week - Turnovers

Jargon of the Week

The last several Jargon of the Week(s) have been about fabric package options.  This week we're going to keep the ball rolling with a little bit about turnovers. says a turnover is:
turn·o·ver [turn-oh-ver]

  1. an act or result of turning over; upset.
  2. change or movement of people, as tenants or customers, in, out, or through a place: The restaurant did a lively business and had a rapid turnover.
  3. the aggregate of worker replacements in a given period in a given business or industry.
  4. the ratio of the labor turnover to the average number of employees in a given period.
  5. the total amount of business done in a given time.
  6. the rate at which items are sold, esp. with reference to the depletion of stock and replacement of inventory: Things are slow now, but they expect an increased turnover next month.
  7. the number of times that capital is invested and reinvested in a line of merchandise during a specified period of time.
  8. the turning over of the capital or stock of goods involved in a particular transaction or course of business.
  9. the rate of processing or the amount of material that has undergone a particular process in a given period of time, as in manufacturing.
  10. a change from one position, opinion, etc., to another, often to one that is opposed to that previously held.
  11. a reorganization of a political organization, business, etc., esp. one involving a change or shift of personnel.
  12. a baked or deep-fried pastry with a sweet or savory filling in which half the dough is turned over the filling and the edges sealed to form a semicircle or triangle.
  13. Basketball, Football . the loss of possession of the ball to the opponents, through misplays or infractions of the rules.


  14.   that is or may be turned over.

  15.   having a part that turns over, as a collar.


 1605–15; n. use of v. phrase turn over
Nope!  15 guesses and they didn't even come close!

A quilting turnover is another package of fabric.  Moda fabrics packages at least one 6" half-square triangle of each fabric in a selected line. 

I think they look like a slice of pie.  What do you think?
Moda Frolic Turnover By The EachModa Frolic Turnover By The Each

Swanky TurnoverSwanky Turnover

 Nostalgia TurnoverNostalgia Turnover

Check out the Moda Bake Shop for free patterns using these yummy little things.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

St. Luke's Charity Project

The KC Modern Quilt Guild is working on a charity project for St. Luke's Hospital.  We are hoping to have 15-20 baby quilts to donate to the NICU.  I volunteered to do six blocks in the red, green, yellow, and blue color scheme.  This is my contribution to the project.

 St. Luke's Block - On Clothesline

You can see my blocks individually on my flickr photostream.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

aha Moment

If you follow me on twitter you'll know that I filmed an aha moment last week. 

What's an aha moment?  Mutual of Omaha has commercials showing people talking about their aha moments.  If you're interested in seeing some of the people they have filmed, go here.

I got an email asking if I'd be interested in filming my aha moment because they were going to be in Kansas City for a few days.  I met the crew down at the KC Power & Light district at their really cool airstream studio. 

Aha 01

The aha moment I talked about was when Singer picked up the instructions for my sewing machine cover.

Sewing Machine Cover- with cabinet
Go here if you'd like to get the instructions.

When I left they gave me this little clapboard as a gift.  Cute, eh? 
Aha 02

It was a fun experience.  They said you should be able to see my clip on the website in a few weeks.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Clear thread

I mentioned in this post that I would talk about the clear thread I've discovered.

It's awesome stuff!  The stuff I'm using is 100% polyester by Sulky.  It's this stuff...

Sulky Premium Invisible Thread 2200 Yards Clear 232S-2001, 3 Item(s)/Order 
Premium Invisible Thread 2200 Yds: Clear

It's really really fine and has a slight shimmer to it when you use it. 

What I really like about it is the way it looks when you quilt something with it.

Detail - 02

All of the thread used here was clear.  I like how it doesn't add a lot of busy-ness to the image, but adds a more subtle textures. 


The seashell fabric I used in the background here is very busy, but the thread doesn't take away from it like a colored thread would have. 

Isn't that neat how that works?  I think I might have found a new favorite in this thread.