March 31, 2012

Sally's Twilight Quilt: It's a Wrap!

Sally, thank you for allowing me to share your quilt.  It's been a lot of fun and very inspiring keeping up with your progress over the past months.  I have enjoyed our friendship most of all.  I hope this  doesn't mean the end.

I've put together a slideshow with most of the pictures that Sally generously to shared on Facebook.  Sally designs custom quilts, including the Twilight Quilt.  Sally's Custom Quilts

March 30, 2012

A Day Off

Taking the day off from work today....

S wants to go bowling and have lunch with a friend so I'm going to do that.

I do have a trip to the quilt shop planned.  I'm going to by the next color for my Modern Bargello quilt and maybe try to find a white batik for my little tulips.

I hear another pattern might be tested and improved upon.  I'm waiting to see Sally's finished Twilight Quilt.  I have work to do in EQ7.

Have a great day!

March 29, 2012

3 7/16"

I hope I'm not boring anyone with all this talk of process.  I feel like I'm beating a dead horse....EEEEW.

I have another New Moon tulip on the EQ7 drawing board.

Call me crazy, stubborn, or whatever when it comes to things.

As it seems like I can't give up making the smaller/original version of the SM Twilight Quilt Reproduction to test it, I've had to grit my teeth and tweak my thinking.

Can you believe the tulips have to finish 3 7/16?!  (I'm going to check my math again, but I'm pretty sure I'm right.)

I love the way the my version of the New Moon Tulip block turned out.  I want to use that block for the larger-sized quilt.  I did fix that one section to get rid of that tiny white piece I was talking about.

Despite my reservations about doing so, I've tweaked the tulip block some more.  I wonder if anyone will be able to tell the difference?  I adjusted a couple of more lines and, GASP, I squashed the tulip a bit, ignoring aspect ratio, to make the new version square.  I'm hoping the tulip won't look too weird.  (I don't even know if I'm explaining myself well enough.  HUH?!)

In case you can't tell the difference, LOL, here is a comparison:

Four tulips coming right up!

March 28, 2012

To Trust or Not to Trust

EQ7 has never done me wrong.....

Any issues have always been due to operator error, like the misnumbering in the On-Point Twilight Hands pattern.  I sectioned it and numbered it.  The sectioning is fine, but the numbering isn't totally right for the apple.  I figure that most people can look at it, know that it isn't right, and sew it in the proper order on their own.  It isn't a fatal flaw.  The idea, though, that I've done that pattern and it has errors is awful to me.  I will be fixing that pattern ASAP!

Why don't I feel like I can't trust the measurements it has given me for the SM Twilight Reproduction Quilt?  Yep, it's me I don't trust.  If I'm going to share something, I feel like I need to have made it first and tested it out.

So far so good.....  I squared up the Twilight Hands block to 8 11/16" and added 1" strips of red fabric on all four sides of the block.  I think making the strips any larger than 1/2" finished would overpower the block.  The block "finishes" (not finished in quilter's lingo with the extra 1/2" for seam allowances, mind you...) at 9 11/16 as per the EQ7 drafted quilt center.  It's a go!

The more I work with these small measurements the more aggravated I am with Elizabeth....which, even at this point, I didn't think was possible.  Oh, but, it is.  It's not the 16ths that are bothering me.  There was absolutely NO reason why she had to make the quilt with these measurements and these small blocks.  I can only think that she couldn't figure things out any other way after she decided that the checkerboard part of the quilt needed to be a certain equal measurements?  I am going to like making this quilt bigger than the original, that's for sure!

The next step will be for me to figure out the tulip sections featured in the four setting triangles that surround this block.  I have the measuremenst as provided by EQ.  It's just a matter of figuring out the size that I can make the tulip block with the shortened stem.  I'm going to let EQ do the work.  The nice thing is that I can edit the block in EQ, like shortening the stem and removing the floating petal below the tulip, and print it the size I need.

Twilight Hands: On-Point

The pattern works!

I didn't have to sew anything twice.

I had to square up the block because of a bit of shrinkage, but this is typical for a block with so many sections and so many little pieces.  (The pictured block is before I squared it up.)  I purposely made the block larger because knew I would square it up.

The grey I used is too dark.  Darn it!

I'm still going to use the block to test the pattern for the Reproduction quilt.

I'm overly critical of my own work

The block isn't that bad and someone won't notice the dark grey so much....

The pattern is difficult at 9" with too much detail.  I hate to give it up, though.  I like that the hand doesn't look like a blob holding an apple.

March 27, 2012

Save Your Memories in a Quilt: Lydia

I've shared Lydia's work before.  She may not know it, but she saved me months ago.  I was about ready to give up.....

She was so nice to make a couple of blocks from some of my Twilight patterns even though they were rough drafts in some cases and untested.  If it hadn't been for her, I might not have finished them or made any more.  Seeing the blocks in fabric really made the difference!  She also shared some trees with me and sent me some special fabric for the Bella's Transformation block that is still on my list to be made.

I have enjoyed our email conversations most of all.....

I can't stop saying, "Thank you!"

When Lydia isn't quiting Twilight, Harry Potter, and for other of her fandom faves, she makes commissioned memory quilts.  Her work is really a special undertaking.....  It makes me wish I were a saver!

Thank you for letting me share!

March 26, 2012

Something Tells Me.....

Something tells me that no one has made the On-Point Twilight Hands block....LOL!

The apple part is misnumbered horribly.  I'll have to fix it, but not until I get the whole thing pieced to see if I made any more errors.

I used one of my favorite types of fabric for the apple...Fossil Fern.

I'm making this block in a 9" size to test it.

New Moon Tulip: Do You Miss It?

With that little white piece removed....

To compare:

I really think it's fine, but wouldn't mind opions.

New Moon Tulip: Test Complete

I'd like to give a shout out today to Kristen!  She has shared some of her work with me and it's awesome!!  She has some great Nightmare Before Christmas blocks and patterns.  I love her ideas for the Twilight blocks she's been working on!!  We seem to share the same process and so it's nice in that respect alone, but in other ways it's nice to be able to cheer someone else on and share in their successes.

So, the block I've been wanting to share.....

It works!

EQ7 Block Image

I finished the test block this morning.  I didn't feel well again yesterday after taking a pill for another issue so the plans I had to sew into the night didn't happen.  Darn it!

I'd only make one little change and I might not even do it because I'd have to delete a line and I don't know if I want the headache.  I'm going to think about it today....  The piece in this area is very small and could easily be removed.  (See the arrow pointing to the piece.)  That little piece makes that section just a bit trickier in the smaller sized block, but not unpieceable.

More soon......

March 24, 2012

A Beautiful Distraction: Quiltathon Saturday

I think my family must now how crazy things have gotten.  We're all going to take a breath today, including me.  I've been given permission to be a slacker.  I am going to sew today.  I actually started last night.  (I've not given up totally on completing some necessary chores, like laundry, as I am out of clean jeans.)  My older son is off camping this weeekend.  My youngest is having a Wii day.  M and C are off at Hunger Games.  I have to find something fun for S to do.....she's very upset that she didn't get to go to HG.  (She's 11 in a month, but we've heard it's not appropriate for the under 13.)

I'll be checking in today with updates on my progress.  I started the Modern Bargello quilt.  I'm also going to work on some other things. Bye, for now......

I've gotten the review of HG amd both C and M were disappointed.  I have to preface this by disclosing that C and M have read the books multiple times.  C was the most upset.  She feels like too much was changed and switched around.  M even says that the movie couldn't stand on it's own as a good movie.  Harsh!  He says that someone who isn't familiar with the books would get easily confused and find it hard to follow.

I've finished the first row of the Modern Bargello quilt.  It will be the only row I will be able to work on until I get the next set of fabrics in one of the colors.  I'm really liking the way it is turning out.  I was going to wait to add the top and bottom setting strips, but I went ahead and figured out the calculations.  I hope my thinking is correct.  I took the strip outside because I was having trouble getting a good picture inside.

**The pattern for the Modern Bargello is Mary's and can be found on her site in this post.  (towards the end of the post).  I only am using five different fabrics--picking out five was hard enough!  They are all batiks.  My quilt will finish 64"ishx76"....if all goes well.  LOL  (

an inside close-up shot of half of the strip

I am thinking that this would be a very good quilt to use for the quilting class that I am taking through Craftsy, Quilting Big Projects on a Small Machine.  (The class happens to be on sale again, but I don't know for how long....In fact, many of the quilting classes look to be on sale so don't miss out! )

I had to step out for awhile.

I came back and cut up my Twilight T-shirt finally!

I still haven't decided if I will include the Nomads or not.  I'll attach the fusible stabilizer and think some more.

Well, it's technically tomorrow.  I plan on sewing more.  A friend hosted a purse party tonight.  I went for the drinks and apps, but left my checkbook at home on purpose.  I don't really carry a purse and I can't justify spending that much money.  I always think about the fabric I could buy instead.....

My goal tomorrow is to get that fusible stabilizer on the back of the T-shirt and to get it squared up.  I'm then going to get serious about designing the quilt it will be in.  I'm going to try to make the quilt fun along the lines of the Beyond the Block quilts.  I also plan on testing the New Moon tulip pattern.

March 23, 2012

The Wrong Approach

Just when you think that life can't get any busier.....well, it does!  Try having four kids all playing sports with practices and games all on the same days.  Try being a working mom with a very hard working husband.  I know that I am not in the minority anymore.  I know I am in the same boat with so many moms of today....I've talked with a few of them.  All of this in addition to more, leaves me no time to quilt.  I could make time, I suppose, but to be frank, I find it hard to find the energy and creative drive to sew.

I was supposed to be off from work today and totally forgot.  I had kids' conferences this morning.  My daughter's choir director thought it would be cool and absolutely no trouble at all to schedule a Ensemble (small choir group) practice this morning at 9:00 am-10:30 at the last minute.  This addition might not have been such a problem had it not been for the fact that S had some issues (during the intermission of last night's choir performance no less) with the "friend" that I had arranged for her to carpool with that I could get to work in a timelier manner.  My other daughter had a The Great Gatsby essay due (oh, how I love that book) and, with her schedule and procrastination, was up half the night completing it.  She decided to go into school late so I had to run her across town after conferences and before picking up from the choir practice.  I managed to have a *itch session with my mom for a half our this morning or I would be in a worse state of mind.

Yes, I should do a better job of keeping track of my schedule!

However, today wasn't a good day for me to be off anyway.  My boss is headed out on an international trip for a couple of weeks and we had a lot of unfinished business to complete through no fault of my own.  I headed into work after he called to see where I was.  No, he didn't realize I wasn't supposed to work today, either.  When I texted the other boss, he reminded me of my day off.  I felt better at least for being "late" and that I was actually doing them a "favor" of going in.

Don't even ask how the conferences went.  50/50....  I feel like such a failure as a parent after conferences.  It's not that S isn't doing well.  She is.  I am told that she is a joy to have in class.  She's a good leader.  She's smart.  But..... yes, there's always a BUT.  She isn't performing up to her potential.  She participates in class, but when it comes to taking tests....  Her math testing scores aren't meeting district requirements by a bit.  My son is another story.  He has significant reading issues.  He totally has the ability as I can personally attest to, but he resists doing the work in a timely manner or AT ALL.

Back to S's friend issues.....  We struggle with them frequently.  She is her mother's daughter!!!!  She sees herself as the one who always apologizes, the one who is always accomodating, the one who is the people pleaser etc.  After a time, she rebels against this perception.  She wants to be the one who gets her way, she gets tired of being bossed, and she wants the BFF of all BFFs.  The one who doesn't play with anyone else but her without permission.  The one who always sticks up and defends her against attacks.  The one who she can tell anything to who won't then go and blab it to someone else.

Don't we all want that?!  She has unrealistic expectations of friendship.  She is setting herself up for disappointment as I well know.  The friend she has hung out the most this year has a different approach to their friendship.  I can't fault the little girl for that.

March 20, 2012

Just Teasing....Baseball Block

I'm in a sports frame of mind...  Have y'all heard?!  Peyton Manning is going to quarterback the Broncos!!!!!!

I may not feel like working, cooking, carpooling, etc.  I'm never too sick to be on the computer, though.

Needs some cleaning up....  Face is bothering me, but that's probably as going to be as good as it gets.  Feet, too.  Some lines can go away.  I can see some embroidery, like shoe laces and a "C" on the cap.

Whatcha think?!

I must give credit.  The image is not mine....

I found it on the Internet, untagged.

Under the Weather

Caught a cold....

Slowing me down.

Talk at you soon!

Until then, don't forget the Sew Out Loud QAL!  (Linked through Shape Moth)  Don't you think Alice would have a sewing box like this?  I do!!

March 18, 2012

Force Field

I sometimes think there is a force field around my sewing area.  A force field that I cannot breach.....

I got my patterns printed, at least.  I saved them on a thumb drive and took them to Kinkos because I didn't want to fork out the dough for a printer cartridge.  Then, M texted me that he'd bought a color cartridge for the printer.  So funny!

I worked on the baseball player pattern while I was sitting watching the kids swim this afternoon.  I'm going to do a second round after a bit more photo editing to darken the pattern up.  The white edges of the player's were hard to differeniate against the white background.  I think if I make the background a different color and tweak the brightness and color a bit, I'll have an easier time of it.

My Sunday Thought of the Day

Thank you, Bonnie, for the image and idea!

Sending my love to Elizabeth......  Religious beliefs don't make one a better person or give one permission to act a certain way.  I have noticed a lot in my lifetime that those that wear their religion on their sleeve tend to be the biggest hypocrites.

March 17, 2012

Bella's Bracelet: From the Eclipse Quilt UFO

Yes, I still visit......

Eclipse Quilt:  Bella's Bracelet

...  Don't be a poor sport.  I brought you a graduation present and everything. ...

Take it back to the store, Jake.  I've got to do something. ...

He stepped into my line of sight, demanding my attention.

I can't take it back.  I didn't get it from the store--I made it myself.  Took a really long time, too.

(Eclipse, p. 372)

... I didn't make the bracelet, he admitted.  Just the charm.

Fastened to one of the links of the silver bracelet was a tiny wooden carving. ... It was amazing the amount of detail involved in the little figurine--the miniature wolf was utterly realistic.  It was even carved out of some red-brown wood that matched the color of his skin.

(Eclipse, p. 374)

... Jacob Black can give you presents. ...

He pursed his lips for a second.  How about hand-me downs?  Are those acceptable?

... Don't you think it's fair, then, he asked, looking down at my hand as he spoke.  He turned it palm up, and ran his finger along the veins in my wrist.  If I have a little representation? ...

(Eclipse, p. 413)

A hand-me-down, he reminded me sternly. ...

... On the opposite side of chain from the wolf, there now hung a brilliant heart-shaped crystal. ...

... But I thought it was a good representation, he continued.  It's hard and cold.  He laughed.  And it throws rainbows in the sunlight. ...

...  My heart is just as silent, he mused.  And it, too, is yours.

(Eclipse, pp 438-439)

Block Details:


  Bella's bracelet.....

There is another pattern out in the quilting world for Bella's bracelet, but the one I used is my own.  I couldn't use that pattern, I wanted the bracelet to have more detail, and I wanted the bracelet to take up as much of the block as possible.  I drafted my pattern using the Electric Quilt software.  The block is pretty glitzy with the silver fabric I used and the gold background fabric.  I used the gold because Edward puts the crystal heart on her bracelet while Bella's sitting on his bed with the gold comforter.

First, I used Word to get the shape of the bracelets by inserting one ellipse inside the other.  Next, I used the Print Screen function to save the image to the Clipboard.  I pasted it into my photo editing software to crop it and saved it as a .bmp image as required for EQ5.  Finally, I used EQ5 to make the paper piecing pattern.  (pattern available upon request)

This is the image I made in Word that I that I imported into EQ.

The heart charm and the wolf charm are real and attached as charms to the fabric bracelet with thread.

March 16, 2012

Baseball on the Brain: Stephenie Meyer Twilight Quilt Reproduction

I've got baseball on the brain..... Vampire Baseball!

A block made by Elizabeth, I think, for the Stephenie Meyer Twilight Quilt.  She has even gone so far as making a pattern (PDF link) for it.  The instructions are pretty complicated for such a simple block.  It's basically a modified Diamond/Square in a Square block with baseball buttons sewed on.

Easy enough to draft in EQ7 for a paper pieced block.  I started with a base block from EQ7 and got busy.

One could always just use the block from the EQ7 Library:

There's a baseball and bat from the EQ7 Library that could be incorportated somehow with a little more work to the pattern or the buttons could still be used or maybe some appliques.....  (JoAnn's baseball buttons.)

I'm almost thinking that I'd like to draft a pattern with a baseball player.  I guess I can do what I want.

I even like this idea:

Off-Topic: Quilted Sweatshirt Jacket, DWR Quilt, Coffee Sleeves, Computers, OH DARN!

I have always wanted to make a quilted sweatshirt jacket ever since I started quilting.  I think I have even bought a pattern or two.  I have very little experience sewing clothes.  Let's put it this way, I've had minimal success only.  I usually get frustrated by the patterns by Simplicity and McCalls, etc.  I sewed a couple of Halloween costumes for the kids when they were little.  I made a quilted vest or two.  That's about it.

I haven't given up making a jacket.  I bought another pattern not too long ago from from Clotilde only to discover that I actually had to buy another Kwik Sew pattern as the actual jacket pattern.  Ugh!!

I found Moonlight Designs Quilts and Wearables, Inc. today searching for a free pattern or tutorial.  WOW!  AWESOME!!

No offense at all meant, either, to Moonlight or anyone in an older age group as I'm into my 40s and perhaps shouldn't be trying to dress so young, but many of the jacket patterns out there look a little grandmotherly or, perhaps, matronly is the better word.

Anyone like to give me some advice?  My body type is better suited for a jacket fitted to my waist so as not to accentuate the larger lower half of my body.  LOL  I also want my jacket to be lined.  I want to have some freedom in fabric placement or block placement to personalize my jacket(s).  (Yes, of course, I have something Twilight-y in mind.

Am I too conceited to think that I could probably figure out how to make one on my own using info from the 'Net, looking at photos, or trial and error?  Am I asking to be frustrated by going this route?  Should I just splurge and invest in a Moonlight pattern to at least get some instruction on deconstruction, fabric placement, etc?

On another note, after months of wanting the Simply EZ DWR templates that I saw on a Sewing with Nancy show and the online store being out every single time I had an impulsive shopping urge, I bought them today.  Shouldn't have for so MANY reasons, namely why when I probably will never make a quilt, but I did!

I really am going to try to squeeze some sewing in this weekend.  I have a 9" and 13" on-point Twilight Hands blocks to make.  I'd also like to test the New Moon Tulip block.  Nice goals!  What I'll probably end up doing is going to soccer games, clothes shopping with the 10-year old, and going through my quilting stuff.  It is National Quilting Day tomorrow.  My lqs is taking donations and now would be a good time to talk myself into giving some stuff away.....

I am also being tempted by another project:  Mary's Modern Bargello (scroll to the end of the post).  I begged her for the pattern and she made one...I'm sure not just for me.  Be sure to look for the pattern link!

I found my coffee sleeve pattern.  I told M that it had to be somewhere!  It was buried in a document file under his user name on the external hard drive.  I wish it had been so easy, though, because after finding it, I spent another hour plus figuring out how to get the Word document to open.  I had somehow gotten restricted.  M is usually very helpful with all my woes, but he was tied up with some project of his own.  I'm nothing if not stubborn and just clicked on everything I could think of in Properties before I figured out how to "share" the thanks to any of the Internet searches and Microsoft troubleshooting links I tried.

The only thing is that I think I messed up the pattern, because I seem to have written one of the steps wrong.  I made it from memory like the pattern says, but the liner step has to be wrong.  I shouldn't be the same size as the outside so it looks like I'll have to fiddle with it and make another one to see where my pattern is wrong.

March 15, 2012

Look What I Found: Another Grizzly Bear!

I was searching through all my saved photos tonight looking for baseball images for the baseball block and I found another grizzly bear block that I totally forgot.  I made it for the Eclipse Quilt.  I totally forgot about it!

I think I like this version better!  I think it's 7"?

I like the rose fabric and the fabrics I used for the bear more.....

Edward and Bella's Wedding Dance: Stephenie Meyer Twilight Quilt

Edward and Bella's Wedding Dance, cropped block on right was used

If I knew then what I know know....

This block drove me crazy!  I'm still sad that I had to chop it down to 5" for the SM Twilight Quilt.  I tried to piece it at that size so that I could include their full bodies, but I just couldn't make it work at the time.  I made the block THREE times and, finally, settled on the third because I had no other choice.

The pattern is from Quilts with Style magazine, Issue 46 (June 2004).  (The entire pattern was actually a two-part pattern and featured more elements, but the actual couple pattern in Issue 46 only.)

I think the couple part of the pattern was about 12x16.  12x16 reduced to 5x5 was next to impossible!

If you want this block in your quilt, then order the back issue of the magazine.  Be confident that you won't have to make necessarily make your block 5x5.  This block more than any might be the block you use to decide the size of your feature Twilight blocks on that outside border.

Or, you might want to use another block entirely or design a wedding block your own....please share!

My first try had issues. (link to old blog's post)  I tried to use a satiny fabric for Bella's dress.  I didn't like the background fabric.  The only parts I did like were the hair fabrics--I used wood grain fabric for Bella.

I made a second block!

Block #1 (left), Block #2 (right)

This is my post from the old blog for block #2:

I tried again because I had the time, sort of, and there were some things I wanted to try to improve on. I was successful on some points, but the block isn't that much better.

I like the background fabric better. The squared block looks better after I added fabric to make it the right side. I used lace this time for B's arms, but oops....I singed it with a too hot iron when I was pressing the seams while sewing the finished sections together and it melted. Darn it! A couple of the sections missed their match points by a smidge in #2.

Overall, I think block #1 is better. I'm going to try to add fabric to #1 and square up again. I'll probably send both and let E pick.

 This is most of my post from the old blog about block #3:

Another late night or early morning finishing this block! It's done! It's mailed! I don't have to think about it anymore...except for the last time to discuss it here!

I made some changes to this block. After failing the second time, I bought some new fabric: background fabric and Bellas' dress. I gave up on the satin. I really like the new fabrics.

I used the pattern at 50% this time instead of 40%. The construction is a little better. I really made it a point to be super careful with match points and I did have to seam rip a couple of times. I didn't have to add fabric to the sides before squaring it up because the block finished about 6.5 x 8.25. I used starch to help control my bias edges. It's not perfect, but pretty close.

It's a shame that so much of the bottom of the block got cropped, even more than my first and second attempts, but I had to compromise somewhere. I've pictured the block full-size and then cropped. I will make sure my quilt design allows for an uncropped block because the dress is too beautiful to lose any of it

I really do love quilting!  HA!!  One would question that after reading posts like those....

The block is pretty special as finished and not cropped.  I love it!  I'll probably use it again, but try to figure out how to make the back of Bella's dress "sheer or backless" and maybe a way to put her hair up.

March 14, 2012

New Moon Tulip: Ready to be Tested

EQ7 Paper Pieced Pattern Image

From EQ7, New Moon Tulip Block without Outline

EQ7, Pattern Print Preview (Image Only, Reversed for Paper Pieceing)

I don't think the block will be too hard to piece.  The sections are pretty straight forward.  I added a bit of detail to allow for some shading using a darker red fabric in some areas.  I purposely left some background around the block, left a long stem, and preserved the aspect ration of the tulip to allow for the block to be square, but the tulip undistorted.

I actually think my block is more like the original book cover:

To each his own, though.

A Grizzly Bear and Rose: Stephenie Meyer Twilight Quilt Reproduction

I just love this grizzly bear block that I made for the Stephenie Meyer Twilight Quilt!  It was tough as were all the blocks simply because of their scale.  I even had to fuse applique one of the bears eyes because the piece ended up being too small when the pattern was reduced.  I love the rose fabric I used from my stash for Rosalie because, after all, this was the Emmett/Roasalie block.

The pattern is a Silver Linings Originals pattern:  Grizzly Bear (click link)  The pattern in it's original size makes a block 10x10 with a fish in it's mouth.  I didn't piece the fish and just ommitted it from that piece of the pattern.  (A 16x16 pattern is also available.  Fabric kits, too.)

So, if you want this block in your quilt...order it now.  If not design one for yourself.  I may or may not try to design a bear block.  I ask myself, "Why bother?" when this one is so perfect!