Tag Archives: Creativity

Pieceful Monday

Monday, Monday! I planned to post throughout last week. I really did. However, after we got back home from moving our daughter to Florida, I spent most of my time doing some housekeeping (laundry, grocery shopping, etc.) and then doing this . . .

Pieceful Monday - piecefulthoughts.com

When I wasn’t napping, I did make a little bit of progress on some of my sewing projects.

On Wednesday, I stopped in at JoAnn Fabrics to get backing fabric for The 70273 Project Quilt. I took my time and wandered through the store. I came away with more than just the backing for the quilt, but thankfully most of it will be used for some projects I’m working on.

I’m also beginning to construct the blocks for this quilt. This will be a gift, so I can’t reveal too much about this yet. This is a kit using Maureen Cracknell’s Garden Dreamer line. I love the colors and the feel of the fabric.

Pieceful Monday - piecefulthoughts.com

And I started work on a bed quilt for my daughter. I’ll show you more on that soon. For this project, she picked the cutest fabric with toadstools on it. We bought the fabric all at 50% off at a local quilt shop. I bought my first full bolt of fabric. Thank goodness it was 50% off! I’m looking forward to getting this put together soon. I think the toadstools will be fitting, since these little guys seem to show up at her place quite often.

Pieceful Monday - tree frog - piecefulthoughts.com

Recently Lori of Humble Quilts posted that she is once again going to make a trip to Columbia and would once again be taking pillowcase dresses along for the little girls. I have wanted to make some of these for Lori, so today I made my first one. They are so easy and quick to make. You can read Lori’s post and find directions for the dresses here.

Pieceful Monday - pillowcase dress - piecefulthoughts.com

I took this picture in the late afternoon sun. I’ll post more pictures as I get more dresses made!

Happy Monday, friends! Hope you have a wonderful week!

Linking up today with Beth and Main Crush Monday at Cooking Up Quilts.  

Wendy

Making Plans

Do you plan out your week, month or year? To tell the truth, I do a little planning, but the direction I take to get there is more serendipitous than say, my husband’s. Truly, I’m basically okay with that; however, sometimes it’s good to have a plan. I found something to help with that.

For the past year, I’ve been using The Quilter’s Planner. Now that I have been blogging for over a year and getting more involved in my online community with quilt alongs, blog hops, etc. as well as activities with my local quilt group, and making quilts for others, this planner has come in handy. Let me tell you why.

It has nice space for writing appointments, etc.  With a month-at-a-glance layout as well as week-at-a-glance, there is plenty of room for writing. There are also little places to write specific notes related to quilting, work, and miscellaneous notes on each page — so handy!

Making plans - piecefulthoughts.com

It has pages for planning projects. I found these helpful when I was thinking through and drafting a project. All my notes were in one place as opposed to several pages of paper.

Making plans - piecefulthoughts.com

It has helpful resources.

Making plans - piecefulthoughts.com

Not only that, but each month had a quilt block highlighted with a link to instructions, a little free motion doodle for practice, and other helpful fun quilting tips.

In addition, The Quilter’s Planner website is also a great resource for additional information throughout the year.

Time to Pre-Order the 2018 Quilter’s Planner

Making Plans - piecefulthoughts.com

I just pre-ordered my 2018 Quilter’s Planner. Look at that gorgeous color on the front! If you like Allison Glass, you’ll definitely want to take a look!  While everything I loved about it is still included, there are several new things this year that I’m excited about:

  • 12 monthly blocks featured in a new Quilter’s Planner Sampler Quilt pattern by Cheryl Brickey
  • A companion full-color glossy magazine with 13 quilting and sewing patterns by top designers
  • 4 pages of planner stickers by 2018 Featured Artist Alison Glass
  • Laminated cover and colorful tabs designed by Alison Glass

You can also get a mini planner with the larger planner that easily tucks into a large purse or tote. It’s about 5 x 7″ in size. It has some handy features so that you can take your quilt information with you when you are out and about. You never know when you’ll find just the right fabric, and you’ll be able to have yardage notes right in that little planner!

I keep my planner by my sewing machine, where I can access it each day and review what needs to be done. It’s been so helpful for me when scheduling quilting time and blog posts, particularly during those busy days of non-quilting activities. A little pre-planning goes a long way to being able to sneak in some quilting time.

If you like planners, or would like to give one a try, do take a peek at this one! You can find more information and order it here.

I’m not an affiliate of the planner in any way. I just really like the product and wanted to let you know that you can now pre-order the 2018 planner. I hope you take a minute to take a look.

Do you use a planner? I’d love to hear your method of staying on track with quilting and daily commitments!

Wendy

 

Improv Stripes

Debbie Jeske of A Quilter’s Table started an improv stripes QAL recently, and today is the day some of us will be revealing our work. This has been such a fun little QAL;  check out #improvstripesqal on Instagram for more inspiration.

We were to pick some fabrics and/or scraps and sew them into strip sets. I had a couple of oddball fat quarters tucked away in a drawer. Oddball not because the fabric was ugly, but oddball because I really couldn’t figure out what to do with them. I’m glad they came to mind for the project because they seemed to work well. I happened to stop at a quilt shop during the sewing, so I also picked up a couple FQs I thought would be a fun addition.

There is something very relaxing and fun about cutting randomly and then just sewing away. I didn’t really think much about what should go next to what, or how big the strip sets were. I just sewed them together. My first sets looked like this. If you follow me on Instagram at @piecefulwendy, you can see my progress as I went along.

Improv stripes - piecefulthoughts.com

I sewed strips together until I had no more fabric left, adding in a bit of gold here and there. Thinking I’d make a little mini square quilt, I squared some of the blocks right away, but left some as they were until I figured out how to fit them together. In the end, I moved them around and made a runner.

Improv Quilt - Runner 1 - piecefulthoughts.com

The runner measures about 11″ x 25″.  I used a piece of gray fabric from my stash for the backing and binding. I’m not sure where I picked it up, maybe at SRHarris. I realized as I was working with it that there is a very light staining on the fabric. I’m wondering if it is from water damage, or maybe it just wasn’t a good run and that’s why it ended up at the store. It’s barely noticeable, so I’m not too concerned.

Improv Quilt - back view - piecefulthoughts.com

I quilted it with a lime green Aurifil thread. I originally intended to add one more color of thread, but I was enjoying the green so much that I just kept going. Keeping with the improv feel, I made organic lines both horizontally and vertically in groups of three.

I also set some of the longer strips aside. A few people mentioned how the longer stripe groups looked like birch trees, and I couldn’t resist going with that. So I made this.

Improv Quilt - Birches - piecefulthoughts.com

It’s a little mini runner, about 9″ x 30″. I’ll call it “Birches”. The gold fabric makes me think of  little streaks of golden sun along with the other purples and pinks of the sunset. Sunset through the birch trees — see? It works for me.

Improv Quilt - Birches back detail - piecefulthoughts.com

I used a variegated gold thread (Gütermann) to quilt this, just stitching some organic lines here and there. Once again I considered adding in another color of thread, but ended up with just the gold. The same gray fabric was used for the backing and binding on this mini as I did in the other.

Improv Quilts - runner and Birches - piecefulthoughts.com

Have you ever done improv? Did you enjoy it or not? I’d enjoy hearing about your experience. I’ll respond to every comment; however, I won’t be responding until next week after I return from the road trip.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

Wendy

Elephant Pillow

My elephant quilt came up in conversation this week.

Elephant Quilt - piecefulthoughts.com

My daughter and I were talking about ideas for a gift she wanted to make. I made this wedding quilt for her friend a year ago.

Wedding Quilt - piecefulthoughts.com

I had some fabric left over from the wedding quilt, so we decided to make an elephant pillow. The recipient likes elephants, and we had enough leftover fabric for the project.

My daughter did the appliqué. I think it came out so cute!

Elephant Quilt - piecefulthoughts.com

It makes me want to do another elephant quilt. I enjoyed stitching each of those little pachyderms, all 24 of them! I think one in bright contemporary fabric would really be fun.

While she was stitching on the pillow, I was working on my improv quilts. I took these stripes and made two (yep, two) mini quilts.

They turned out pretty well; can’t wait to show them to you!

Look for a post on Friday with those two fun improv finishes this week. Meanwhile, the moving truck is being loaded today, and tomorrow we begin the trek to move our daughter to Florida!

I’m linking up today with Susan and Midweek Makers at Quilt Fabrication and Lorna and Let’s Bee Sewcial at Sew Fresh Quilts.

Happy stitching, all!

Wendy

 

Project Line Up

Projects! Our quilting lives would be dull indeed if we didn’t have projects to be done (and fabric to be bought, but more on that in a minute). I was just thinking that I had some pretty relaxed quilting time ahead, and before you know it, I have a list of projects to keep me busy. We won’t talk about the WIPs languishing on my shelves!

I had a delightful time last Friday when I went up to a local quilt shop, Quilt Cove, and finally was able to meet Nancy from Grace and Peace Quilting. I was able to chat with her for a bit, just before a busload of quilters came in for the Minnesota Shop Hop. Nancy is just as delightful in person as she is in her blog. If you don’t follow her, go visit her page and get to know her!

One of the things I’ve enjoyed since I began blogging is getting to know you, my readers or followers. On Saturday, Karen of Tu-Na Quilts, Travels and Eats sent me a quick notice that she was going to be at another local quilt shop. I couldn’t get over there to meet her, and I am so sad that I missed that opportunity. Karen writes such great posts on her blog; she makes it just plain fun and is very creative. I encourage you to visit her as well; you won’t be disappointed!

I picked up fabric at Quilt Cove, of course. I was specifically looking for fabric for the Meadow Mist Mystery Quilt. I’ll share that fabric with you in another post. The mystery quilt begins tomorrow, so I’m ready! One thing I will tell you is that some of the fabrics are bright! Surprised?

While I’m waiting for that to start, here’s what I’ve been working on.

Garden Dreamer Quilt

All the pieces are cut for the quilt using Maureen Cracknell’s Garden Dreamer fabric. Truly, this is gorgeous fabric.

Project Line Up - piecefulthoughts.com

Improv Play

I’ve been exploring some improv quilting, and finding that I really, really like it. I have over 20 blocks of these two color blocks. I know where this is going. Once I finish the rest of the blocks, I need to square them and then put the rest of the quilt together.

Project Line Up - improv blocks - piecefulthoughts.com

Since I was having so much fun with those, I decided to join up the improv stripes quilt along with Debbie Jeske at  A Quilter’s Table. This is a fun way to give improv a try if you’re interested. Jump in and join along if you wish. You can see all the fun progress at #improvstripesqal on Instagram.

Project Line Up - more improv - piecefulthoughts.com

I wasn’t really sure where these blocks were going, but an idea has come to mind. I’m excited to see if I can make it work.

That’s my mid-week project line up. I’ve purposely signed up for projects that have no tight deadlines since I have a couple of trips scheduled in August and September and I don’t want to fall behind on projects.

Linking up today with Mid-Week Makers at Quilt Fabrication and Let’s Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts.

See you Friday!

Wendy

Baby Quiltiness

Well, I’m delighted to share that all three baby quilts are delivered to the parents. Two of the quilts are snuggling babies, while we patiently await the arrival of the third.

So today, I just want to share a little quilty baby love with you. Remember that Periwinkle Quilt? This was made using Lella Boutique’s Sugar Pie fabric and the pattern is from this Missouri Star tutorial.

It’s looks all fine and lovely snuggled over the rail on my deck. However, it’s so much cuter snuggled this way.

Isn’t she beautiful? I’m just a little partial, since she is my cousin’s daughter’s baby. This view of the quilt really shows off the lovely quilting by Connie of Turnberry Lane Machine Quilting.

This is why I enjoy quilting, to be able to share some joy with others. Allyssa and I worked together to choose the pattern and fabric, and I’m so happy that she likes the quilt. I’m pretty sure her little girl loves it too, as you can see from this last photo!

Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you have a fun week of sewing!

I’m linking up today with Beth at Cooking Up Quilts.

Wendy

 

 

Looking on the Bright Side

I promised you a picture of the bright quilt top, so I finally have one to show you. I still need to add some borders to this quilt, but that may involve hunting down some fabric, so it may be a WIP for a little bit longer.

Anyway, the quilt pattern is from Missouri Star and it’s called Two Step. This is a definitely a lively two step! The quilt was made from a jelly roll and a charm pack. After sewing two jelly roll strips together and cutting them, I got about three blocks from each strip. I ended up with 60 blocks and laid it out 6 blocks across, and 10 down. It is a long quilt, long enough for an extra long twin bed. In the photo below, my 6’6″ husband is fully behind the quilt. It completely covers him!

Looking on the Bright Side - piecefulthoughts.com

It was an easy quilt to make. The most difficult part was making sure I was alternating the placement of the white blocks while I sewed the blocks together!

I have no idea what I will do with this quilt, but it is one more pre-cut off my shelf. Yay!

In other news, I am almost done cutting out that lovely fabric I showed you on Wednesday. I’m itching to play with the leftover pieces; I think a pincushion might be a fun thing to make with the scraps. We’ll see!

What a fun couple of weeks it has been with the 12 Days of Christmas in July Blog Hop! Thank you all for your kind words of encouragement for my project, and for those of you who have begun following me. I thoroughly enjoy my online quilt community, and I hope you continue to enjoy my posts as I share my pieceful thoughts of my quilting life!

Just a heads up — the drawing for the blog hop will be on August 4th, so good luck to those of you who have followed along and commented on each blog each day. I can’t wait to hear who wins!

Hanging with Sarah was so much fun, so I’m whooping it up with her again today at Confessions of a Fabric Addict and I’m also linking up with Finished or Not Friday over at Busy Hands Quilts.

Have a great weekend, friends!

Wendy

Watery Wednesday

Last night, I finished up the bright quilt top that I teased you with a few posts back. I intended to show it off to you this morning, but the weather has been less than cooperative. We have had heavy rains the last two days. It is soggy, dark and dreary here this morning, with the anticipation of some humidity in its wake. So, I’ll show you the quilt top on another day when the photo opportunities are better.

In the meantime, I acquired some additional fabric for a quilt that will be given as a gift. I need to get going on it, so I will likely begin the cutting today. I wanted to find fabric that was kind of botanical, and this fit what I was looking for.

I chose Maureen Cracknell’s Garden Dreamer line. Earlier this year, when I was part of the 2017 New Bloggers Blog Hop, I won a gift certificate to Hawthorne Threads, and they had a kit with her fabric and a pattern that I think will work perfectly for the gift. Here’s the fabric. I snapped these photos with my phone, so keep that in mind.

Watery Wednesday - Maureen Cracknell's Garden Dreamer - piecefulthoughts.com

Watery Wednesday - Maureen Cracknell's Garden Dreamer - piecefulthoughts.com

Honestly, the photos do not do this line justice. The fabric is just gorgeous! The colors are vibrant and blend together so well. I cannot wait to get started. I’m pretty sure I’m going to have to order more of this for myself! I hope there are some scraps leftover, at least!

I have to credit Bernie at Needle and Foot for introducing me to Maureen Cracknell and her line of fabric. Bernie has done a series of interviews with some fabric designers, and Maureen Cracknell was one of them. You can read Bernie’s interview with her at the link above. I encourage you to visit Bernie’s blog and meet some of the amazing people she has visited with. While you’re there, you can also pick up the designer’s fabric in Bernie’s store. It will be on your doorstep before you know it!

Happy Wednesday, friends! I hope you have a good day of sewing ahead!

Wendy

Fishy Stash

Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you had a relaxing weekend with some fun sewing! Things were a little fishy around here, so let me show you what I worked on this weekend!

Last week, Nancy from Grace and Peace Quilting posted a picture of the mini quilt she made from a pattern in the current issue of Modern Patchwork magazine. When I saw her quilt, I knew I had to make one of my own. So I did. You saw a little peek of this on Friday, and many of you knew what I was up to. Here it is, all done.

Fishy Monday Quilt - piecefulthoughts.com

Well, actually I made it for someone else, but more about that in a minute.

I chose to make only four fish rather than five. Why? Because I only had enough of the background fabric for four fish! It’s a fun low-volume polka dot, which I thought worked well. I also made the red fish and the bottom blue fish out of prints rather than solids. Again because it’s what I had in my stash. The bottom blue fish is actually made using the wrong side of the fabric. The right side was just a smidgen too dark, so I just flipped it over and used the wrong side, which was just right! Do you ever do that?

This was my first time using straight line quilting, and I really enjoyed it! I didn’t measure other than to add a few little marks to try to keep me somewhat straight. I wanted to make sure I stitched straight through the middle of the fish first, then I just kept adding lines around it. I didn’t get too worried if the lines bent a little. It was fun to use the red thread for the red fish and then switch to a light blue on the rest.

Fishy Monday Quilt - detail shot - piecefulthoughts.com

This is going to a sweet friend of mine. She and her husband are pastors to missionaries. They travel often, and this is a welcome home gift for her when she arrives home next week. She is one of my closest friends, and we have walked through much together. The symbol of the fish has much meaning to her. The colors in the quilt are not only colors in her home, but colors of her heritage. The red fish swimming the other way will have special meaning to her as well. I cannot wait to give this to her, although she will likely read this post and know it is coming her way.

Fishy Monday Quilt - piecefulthoughts.com

This is a really fun quilt to make. Go grab a copy of Modern Patchwork and make one of your own!

I’m linking up today with Beth at Cooking Up Quilts and Em’s Scrapbag

See you Wednesday!

Wendy

 

Three Project Peeks

I have three project peeks for you today. This week has been a fast one with the 12 Days of Christmas in July Blog Hop and seeing all the fun projects from the bloggers who are participating. I hope you keep following each day, fill your to-do list with some fun Christmas projects, and make sure to comment on each blog so you qualify for the great giveaway. You can find the details on the giveaway and the blog hop  here.

So let’s get to the peeks! I’ve had some fun this week working with my stash of fabric. Do you ever get fabric and know you want to make something — like, you kind of have an idea, but not really? I have had a couple of pre-cuts that fit that description. Finally this week the lightbulb went on, and I had to get to work on them.

So I’ve been doing a little of this. This will be a gift for a friend.

Three Project Peek - piecefulthoughts.com
This is not my design, but a fun little project.

And a little of this. I have no idea what I will do with this.

Three Project Peeks - piecefulthoughts.com
This isn’t a design of mine either, but it sure is colorful!

And a whole lotta this. I have no idea what I will do with this either, but I am having so much fun.

Three Project Peeks - piecefulthoughts.com
I told my husband, “It’s improv, but I have a plan!” He thought that was funny.

None of these projects are done yet, but they are well on their way. I’ll post my progress!

In Other News

What else is going on in my life? Here’s a few random things.

  • In less than a month we move our daughter to Florida.
  • In a little more than a month we go on our 30th anniversary trip.
  • I have 6 quart jars of brandied cherries soaking up the sun in my kitchen window.
  • Fred and I have separated, but we are still friends. He is residing with my other boots and shoes. PT is more fun than wearing Fred the Boot.
  • I’d like my own personal chef so I wouldn’t have to make dinner.
Before You Go

Since we’ve been talking about Christmas projects this week, and if you’ve enjoyed the QAL that’s been going on with the 12 Days of Christmas in July Blog Hop, I want to put a little plug in for another QAL coming up on August 1st.

Earlier this year, I was part of the 2017 New Bloggers Blog Hop and I have met some of the most amazing bloggers through that group. Some of them have put together the I Wish You a Merry Christmas Quilt-A-Long and if you enjoy QALs, you don’t want to miss this one! I’ve seen the blocks that will be part of this, and they are cute! You can get all the details here.  Don’t miss it — you’ll have a fun quilt all ready for Christmas!

Have a great weekend, everyone! I hope you sneak some sewing time in!

Wendy