Shhh … It’s a secret

Amy over at 13 Spools recently confessed some of her dirty little quilty secrets and asked her readers to do the same. Here are 10 of mine:

image1. Sometimes I press, sometimes I iron. Most times it’s a combo deal of the two.

2. I don’t like my machine anymore, but I’m too cheap to buy a new one. At least for now.

3. I absolutely detest and despise basting, almost enough to stop me from quilting entirely. If I had the money, I’d send my quilts to a longarmer just so I wouldn’t have to baste them.

4. I love coming up with ideas/patterns for my stash, but I change my mind a million times before they ever get made. Sometimes the perfect idea doesn’t stay so perfect.

5. I’m not a big fan of the crinkled look on washed quilts so I don’t usually wash mine until they get really dirty. I don’t pre-wash my fabrics either.

6. I don’t love every quilt I’ve ever made. Quite a few have just been learning experiences.

7. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to consistently sew a perfect scant 1/4 seam, but it hasn’t stopped me or anyone else from enjoying my quilts.

8. I am so grateful to the bloggers who post tutorials and process posts. I have learned so much from them, and I hope to repay the favor through this blog.

9. I don’t like fat quarters and prefer to buy half yards so I can have the full width of the fabric.

10. Since I’m too cheap to get rid of the traditional fabrics in my stash, I like using them in modern ways. If that makes the quilts not truly modern, I don’t care.

What about you? What are some of your quilty secrets?



The one where I redo Supernova block #1

I shared with you in my last post how I really wasn’t crazy about the first block I made for the Supernova Friendship Block Swap Stephanie and I are hosting. it was OK, I just knew I could do better.

Mine’s the one on the right. I’m using this photo that Stephanie took since I didn’t even bother get a photo of it before I sent it in the mail!

Thankfully, she likes it just fine, and I think it works with her cooler color palette. We’re using Splendor 1920 by Bari J along with pieces from our stash.

I’m just being a picky perfectionist, and I’m glad to have her blessing on the redo.

DSC_0016I didn’t veer too far from the original, I just switched one palette for another. The geometric print will still be on the outside, and the yellow will be next to it. The centers will have the birds and feathers, and the green will be in the very middle.

I just need two more fabrics and I can start sewing. Wish me luck!

Linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday.



Finished: Supernova block #2 and my cotton infinity scarf

I have two finishes to share with you today, my second Supernova block and the cotton infinity scarf from last week. Let’s start with the block:

DSC_0011I decided to go a little bolder this time; I also didn’t use Lee’s directions for choosing fabrics but just picked them as I sewed. I’m much happier with the result than with my first block. In fact, since I hadn’t made a duplicate of that block before I sent the first one off to Stephanie, with her blessing I’m going to redo the first one for my quilt.

What’s really cool about the block above is how when you look at it from a distance, the pale yellow fabric creates a kind of halo around the darker colors. I got the idea from some the photos on our Supernova Flickr page.

So, are you ready for the question for August? This time, Stephanie did the honors, and it’s all about making memories:

During this last month of the summer, your assignment is to sit back and think for a minute. Think about your childhood summers …

Our memories make us who we are. They provide us with a sense of self. This month, Stephanie and I invite you to write about your best childhood memories and share them with your partner in the Supernova Friendship Block Swap. You can share one, you can share five — whatever you’re inspired to do.

When you share a memory with a trusted friend, it’s like giving a little gift, a small piece of yourself. These are the gifts that truly allow friendships to deepen and flourish.

I hope you’re enjoying the beautiful blocks and the friendship you’re developing with your partner. Don’t forget to post photos on our Flickr page. Even if you’re not participating in the swap, there’s some wonderful quilty eye-candy to enjoy!

For the scarf, I powered through the rest of the weird shiny polyester string-type yarn I had so I could finish. Let me just say I was glad it was long enough by the time I decided I couldn’t take any more of the yarn’s splitting and slipping. I didn’t even finish the entire skein. I. was. done.

DSC_0013On the far left is the Rowan cotton that I began the project with (and that makes up the back side), followed by another Rowan cotton in a slightly lighter weight. Next is the bouclé, and last is the string stuff.

One of the other things I didn’t like about the string stuff was that it showed even the slightest problem in tension. Since cotton doesn’t have the same stretch and bounce that wool does, which is what I typically knit with, this meant there were more issues than I would have liked.

Still, when it’s double-wrapped around my neck, no one will notice.

DSC_0014I mentioned last time that I didn’t anticipate the edges curling knitting stockinette stitch in cotton, but it turned into a happy mistake and make it much easier to hide the ends that I wove in.

I love it when that happens!




WIP Wednesday: cotton infinity scarf

Do you ever have a project that starts out as one thing but ends up as another? That’s what’s happened with my latest knitting project.

DSC_0003I have a bunch of white cotton in my stash, of varying types, and I thought a good way to use it up and do some mindless knitting would be to make a hand towel.

What I didn’t bank on, since I had no idea how much yardage this would take, would be that I would run out of the particular kind I was using (Rowan) just before the finish.

I also stupidly did not believe all the knitters who said stockinette stitch would curl on the edges. I knew it did with wool, I just thought it wouldn’t with something that didn’t have any stretch. Oh, silly me.

After sharing my Pinterest board with a new knitting friend, Kim, at work that had both of us drooling over an infinity scarf on Etsy, I thought to myself, “Why not make an infinity scarf out of the cotton?” It’s always freezing in my office, even during the summer, so I could use it to warm up and not look like an idiot for running my space heater in July.

Yes, I have run the space heater during summer. More times than I care to admit …

DSC_0002I threw in a few rows of garter between the varying skeins, whenever I felt like it. I really enjoy knitting scarves for that reason; you can make up your own pattern on the spot.

The second skein was similar to the first, just a lighter weight. (Unfortunately, not all the skeins in my stash have tags, since many were inherited from my mom.)

Then I moved to a kind of bouclé:

DSC_0004Now I’m using some sort of polyester shiny, silky-like string stuff, only it’s not quite as soft as the real thing:

DSC_0008Best of all is now the curling on the ends will work to my advantage by hiding the back side of the scarf, saving me from making a tube in the round.

DSC_0007I’m about two-thirds of the way done on this, so I probably won’t get to wear it much this year, even though we have warm weather well into October. In any event, I’ll definitely be ready for next year.

Linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday.