Sunday, December 12, 2010


Despite any posts to show any progress lately, I have done more quilt making this month than all year I think but they're Christmas presents.  And now, I have one quilt left to make and I need to have it done this week.  But I seriously miscalculated how much fabric I have.  I thought I had 120 5" squares.  I only have 72.  A combination of really wishful thinking and being tired I guess.  This is not enough for the lap quilt I wanted to make.    It's a really cute baby quilt right now but I'm not giving it to a baby.  I'm thinking about adding sashing but I really don't want to.  So, I'm disgusted and can't make a decision and it makes me not want to do anything else either, like the 100 Christmas cards waiting to be sent out or preparing for what's going to be a crazy week.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Jack's Quilt

After finishing up my daughter's quilt for the Blogger's Quilt Festival, my son, Jack, asked me every day if his quilt was done.  A few days later I finally finished it.

While I was making Casey's quilt, Jack requested one for himself.  I had just seen some of Alexander Henry's 2D Zoo fabric and asked Jack if he wanted his quilt to have zoo animals on it.  He most certainly did as long as there was a lot of blue involved.  I ordered a little bundle of fabric, including the 2D Zoo and some coordinating prints but I didn't have much of a plan for it.  I knew Jack was going to bug me about it every day until the quilt was done, so I wanted it to be simple and quick.  I also wanted to try to showcase the 2D Zoo and not cut it up too much.

This quilt is the first quilt that I have designed myself and I'm proud of that.  But because I was in a hurry, I made a bunch of mistakes on it and all the way up until I put the binding on, I didn't like it at all.  I just wanted to be done with it.  Thankfully, now that it's a finished quilt, I like how it came out.  It's backed in a light blue minky that Jack picked out himself and I used some Alexander Henry elephant fabric for the binding (not that you can see the elephants but it was the only piece that had enough fabric leftover and that matched the back).

To be honest, the quilting isn't entirely done but after spending a night quilting straight lines like a mad woman, I didn't have it in me to outline the big squares the way I wanted to.  And a 4 year old was demanding his quilt so I just let it go.  I might go back and finish them later.

Pretending to sleep after I first gave it to him.
Quilt burrito

But the best part of this quilt is the reaction from Jack.  He loves it.  Here is some of his praise:

"This is great for rolling on.  I love my new blankie.  I like mine know that Mommy?"  (He's big into trying to describe things with numbers, the bigger the better.)

"Mommy, this has all kinds of good boy colors in it."

"Casey is going to be excited when she sees my blanket all done Mommy!"

"It's great for cuddling."

"I can do anything with my new blankie!"

He really said all those things on the afternoon that I gave it to him.  I doubt I'll ever hear such gushing praise for one of my quilts so I'm so happy that I got it finished, imperfections and all.  After school on Monday he even said, "Mommy I told Miss Holly and all my friends that you made a quilt for me!"  

Monday, November 1, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2010

This is my first time participating in the Blogger's Quilt Festival hosted by Amy of Amy's Creative Side.  I'm excited to have just finished this quilt for the show.  This quilt has been a labor of love and a labor of frustration and I'm so happy that it is done!

 I love this quilt because I love the fabrics.  It is the first quilt for which I went to a fabric store and picked out all the fabrics instead of using a coordinated line.  They are mostly good quality quilting fabrics but they were all in a discount store in Maine and I have no idea how old they might be.  This summer when I was visiting my parents there, I asked my mom to watch the kids while I spent quite a bit of time picking out fabrics.  At first I was overwhelmed, but then I just found a few fabrics that I loved and started looking for others to coordinate with it and ended up loving the resulting stack of fabric.

I couldn't wait to start making something with these fabrics when I got home to my sewing machine and I decided to try a zig zag quilt.  I used a quilt is nice's zig zag tutorial.  This was my first experience with half square triangles and they frustrated me a little bit.  Once I realized I needed to do a little squaring, it all started coming together a little better, although a lot slower than I wanted.  

The dog and my daughter were both trying to "help".
In the middle of the process, my 4 year old son wanted to know who the quilt was for.  I told him it might be for his 2 year old sister...the colors would look great in her room.  He didn't like that answer so much...if she was getting one, he wanted one too.  So I started trying to finish this one up and order fabrics for him.  I love that he wants me to make him a quilt, but I am definitely feeling the pressure on all the Christmas projects that I have planned and now a quilt for my son.

In a way, this festival has been just what I needed to get this quilt finished (along with the looming Christmas deadline).  I've been so frustrated the last few days knowing that I was so close to finishing it but seeing everyone else start to post their quilts.  The four year old social scene around Halloween left me very little time to work on it.  In my haste to finish though, I messed up the binding.  After putting my quilt sandwich together and trimming, there were a few rows where the batting was still a little wider than the row.  I decided I would just use a wider binding but when I sewed it on, it ended up being too narrow in the front and didn't catch the edge of the quilt top in a couple places.  Grrr!  I decided to just finish the binding and I will fix it later.

The finished size ended up being 48 x 60 and the backing is a lavender minky.  I even took my kids to the quilt shop to pick out their minky backings and they had a great time.  I quilted along the zig zags with my walking foot, about a half inch from the top of each fabric.

Anyway, I love how this quilt turned out and I will fix the binding soon.  This will be the first quilt I've made that will live in my house, so I'm glad to be able to see it on a daily basis.  Thanks for stopping by and stay tuned for my son's quilt soon!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Hello Betty...It's A Girl!

I finished this quilt just two days before Baby Zoe was born.  For the sake of getting the quilt finished, it's a good thing she was over a week late, although not for her poor mother.  Again, I didn't know whether the quilt was going to be for a boy or a girl until the baby was born.  Zoe's mom already has two boys so I was hoping it would end up being for a girl.

I started this quilt when I got my new sewing machine (a Janome Magnolia 7330).  I already had a quilt top pieced and didn't want to jump right into quilting with my new machine.  I had a Hello Betty charm pack sitting around so I starting organizing them into a patchwork quilt.  Then I played with offsetting the squares and I really liked how it looked.  I also liked how it didn't require me to match up my corners.  I added white sashing strip to make it a little bigger and to make the colors pop a little more.  The finished size is 43" x 45."

The backing is also from the Hello Betty line by Moda and it has a yellow binding.  I quilted a 1/4" from both sides of the horizontal seams and in the ditch around the patchwork.  I thought this would be the quilt I tried free motion quilting on but I didn't have a darning or FMQ foot and didn't feel like running to the store again, so I went back to the straight lines.  In the end, I really liked the modern look of it with straight lines.

The pictures aren't quite doing this quilt justice.  It's a lot more vibrant in person and the backing doesn't look like digital camoflauge in real life.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Brady's Quilt

Brady's quilt didn't have a name until a few days ago when Brady was finally born and we found out he was a boy!  I made this quilt for my sister-in-law's baby shower.  Since she didn't know whether she was having a boy or girl, I had to go with gender neutral fabric.  I used 2 charm packs of Frolic by Sandy Gervais for Moda (along with 2 white charm packs) and I thought it turned out pretty cute. 

The backing fabric is Cosmic Flowers in Grass from the same line with the leftover charms for my first pieced back.  The backing was perfect since I didn't know whether it was a boy or girl...mostly green with blue and pink on it.  (Although not too much pink, now that we know he's a boy.)  I used the Patchwork and Points tutorial from Moda Bake Shop but used binding instead of prairie points.

I feel like I rearranged those charms over and over to get them *perfectly* random but I was either really tired when I did it or they got rearraged during sewing.  Now I see too many similar colors and patterns beside each other, but I'm working to let go of that perfectionism because I really do like how it came out.

Kelly's Quilt - Front

Kelly's Quilt - Pieced Back

If I asked my son to pose for a picture, he wouldn't...he'd close his eyes and try to hide his head.  But since I was trying to take a picture of a quilt, he thought he should jump right into it.

Bryn's Quilt

Oh my goodness...I just won a contest (my first!) through JayBird Quilts sponsored by Above All Fabric and now people are coming to my quilting blog and I don't have much to show yet!  I started this blog a few days before going on vacation and in the frenzy of packing and obsessively cleaning, I didn't get a chance to post about the other 2 quilts that I have finished.  Anyway, I am excited about the beautiful new fabric coming my way...more quilts to come!

But here's more about the second quilt I finished...

Bryn's Baby Quilt

This quilt was for one of my best friend's daughter who was born in June.  I used a tutorial from the Moda Bakeshop called Welcome Spring.  The fabric is Verna by Kate Spain for Moda and is one of my favorite fabric lines from Moda right now.  Some day I have plans to make myself something with it, but there are some more friends having babies coming up.  And I need to start planning for Christmas presents now if I want to get some of the ideas out of my head and onto the sewing machine before December 25th.

The quilt was very easy to make although it definitely didn't turn out square in the end.  Something about sewing long strips of fabric together is still a little difficult for me.  I thought using a jelly roll ie precut fabric would help keep things straight and even, but I probably need to work on the accuracy of my seams.

This is my favorite quilt so know, of the two I've made.  Actually there's a third that was finished around the same time this was so there are 3 to compare.  I loved using the crisp white fabric along with the beautiful colors from Verna.  The backing fabric was a green paisley from the same line.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The Beginning

I started my family blog Capturing the Days in Feb 2009 to try to document our family life and the funny (or not so funny) moments of being a mom.  Then, I started finding friends who had blogs.  From there, I clicked on links to blogs that they read and more links to more blogs and found a whole new world of interesting people and stories on the internet.

I discovered wonderful crafty and decorating blogs...very creative and inspirational people.  I found decorating tips and organizing tips and ways to decorate and be creative while still being thrifty.  And amazing tutorials for sewing just about anything.  I was inspired and decided to try a couple crafts and pulled out the sewing machine for the first time in 8 years.

Somehow, I stumbled across the Moda Bake Shop and found a whole new world of crafts - beautiful fabric and great tutorials for using that fabric.  I decided my next project would be a quilt.  I had a new niece about to be born and decided my first quilt would be for her.  I found out what the theme of her nursery was and found some fabric to match...and started creating my first quilt.

I blogged about the first quilt on my family blog but since then I have created a couple more, with plans for even more.  And now I will blog about my quilts from here.

I have a blogroll of quilting blogs that I read and what these women can create with more kids and jobs and  way more things to do than me, is amazing.  That's just to say that progress on here may be a lot slower at times than other quilting blogs, but I will be enjoying the process and sharing what I've created when I'm ready.