Friday, December 16, 2011

Finished HST Essence Table Topper

With some very helpful tweaking from my husband, this is the final layout of my Essence half square triangle table topper. I really enjoy when my husband comes and sees me when I'm in my crafting space. But then he decides to swap a couple blocks. "Wait a minute. Who said you could touch?" Oh...wait another minute. I really like that better! I never thought we would be sharing time of quilting. It's so very, very cool.

My rows all labeled and ready to be pieced. I work from top to bottom, left to right, always. I decided with my very first quilting project that I needed to establish a system and stick with it so that hopefully my blocks and rows stay in the proper order without too much extra thought.

Pieced and ready to be quilted

which was not without it's mishaps

But all turned out well.  See, I told ya not to worry (kind reminder to myself : ) Here it is in all its fresh quiltedness (is that a word?).

This was a gift for my parents. I wanted to do something special for them this year as they spent a lot of time over the summer doing up extra veggies from their garden for us.  We were in the process of moving to northeast Minnesota and weren't able to put a garden in this year. It's nice to be able to go to the freeze for green beans or corn. I'm so grateful for the extra work everyone put in.

Thankful For Generous Souls

OMG!!! Look what came in the mail today. I almost didn't open it. I thought about wrapping it up and putting it under the tree. But, I broke weak.

It expanded into this lovely collection (Poetry for Moda) of prints, dots, and solids, fat quarters and yardage, pale buttery yellow, the nicest green, teal, coral, and dusty pink. Oh my goodness! From Kelly's photo on her giveaway post I was thinking maybe a couple dozen fat quarters, but this! This just might be enough to make a couple of quilts just perfect for two very special little girls. Do you think I can get two quilts out of this bundle??? They are going to be thrilled. I know I am thrilled.

I am beyond thrilled. I'm touched, warmed to the very tip of my toes by the generosity and kindness of someone who doesn't even know me although I feel I know her a little bit after spending so much time reading through her blog, which I somehow stumbled across a couple weeks ago.  She had a fun Christmas giveaway and I'm one of the very fortunate recipients.  And, to think, I almost didn't participate. Why wouldn't I participate? Because I didn't feel like sharing anything of myself. "It's Christmastime," I told myself. "That's a lousy spirit. What are you afraid of? Just leave a comment." But, a comment isn't just a comment to me. It's a little bit about me, a little glimpse of me. I'm so glad I did. Not because of this awesome box that arrived today, but because it was fun and I really needed that little bit of fun. Thank you, Kelly. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to blog and for sharing so generously with us. I truly appreciate it.

Now, what about patterns? what would be suitable for these fabrics? I have no idea. Any suggestions, anyone?  I just know what I like. Guess I will go look through my Pins and see if I can come up with some ideas, after Christmas, like in January when the snow is a couple feet deep and temps are so low you can't leave the house.  Oh. My. Gosh. I have fabric to make a big quilt (or two)!!! (just looked at table again)

 Yup, it's still there. It's for real. : ) Thanks again, Kelly. A very merry and joyful Christmas season to all.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Moving on with HSTs

I did it! and absolutely love how it all turned out! Whoa! Let's slow down and back up a bit first before I reveal the grand finale.

I made my half-square triangles following what appears to be a very popular method of constructing them - pair up your squares right sides to together (in my case a light and a dark), mark diagonally from one corner to the other (see previous post), sew 1/4" seam each side of this line, and slice the squares in half along this line. Voila! two half-square triangles!

I chain stitched them together as I sewed along my diagonal line. First time doing this as well. It IS a very efficient technique for piecing, I must say, although I don't have a lot of piecing experience to compare...yet. Stitched all seams on one side of the line then switched my chain around and stitched seams down the other side of the line.

Then I sliced. Whew! Scary moment..but all ended well, trust me.
Yes, that is a peek at a GO! Baby. Mother's Day gift, to me. More details on that coming up.

Then a bit of ironing. About halfway through I was asking myself, "Whose idea was this? Did anyone ask if there was ironing involved?"  I don't really mind ironing. At that moment it just seemed like a LOT of pieced triangles until I reminded myself,  "Really?! A lot? Really?! It is only a 24"x24" table topper. Get a grip."

(Note to self: If you are going to continue to take photos on your ironing board, must make a new ironing board cover. Response to self:  DON'T even think about it until after Christmas!)

All blocks were then squared up. Don't have any photos to share of that step. They were all too blurry.

Played with layout a bit, FUN :)  Who knew that you could create so many different layouts with just two little triangles sewn together?! Here are just a couple...

All along though I had a specific layout in mind initially inspired by this tutorial, but more about that later. I going to mess around with blogger a bit and see if I can figure out why it keeps wanting to rotate the picture incorrectly.