Friday, April 29, 2011

Fabric Love #12: Love Them Solids

I think all the quilts I have made have used at least ONE solid fabric.  They are just so versatile - sashing, coordinating with prints, quilt backing and binding.  Whatever your sewing outlet, solid cottons have a place :).  Sometimes I just like lining them up for inspiration or to see how different shades come together. 

My personal stash of fabrics have about 40 solids ... is that bad??? :P  I like to have different shades readily available :).  Recently I have brought a few bolts of solids to add to the JAQS Fabric shop:


I've seen quilts made from all solids.  I would like to try that one day :).  In the meanwhile, I have a dozen uses for these basic - but very useful - fabrics in my stash.

Hope you enjoy solids as much as I do :).


Monday, April 25, 2011

Weekend Wrapup

This weekend was like winter revisited - cold, winter, rainy and we're stuck indoors most of the weekend.  I didn't get as much done as I would like - not unusual :P - but I did get a chance to baste the next 2 quilts:

Framed Blooms:
I love how the applique blooms just pop against the off-white fabric.  I'm still unsure how the quilting will be...hopefully something will just come to me when I'm done basting this :).

Pretty Bricks:
All these delicate designs reminds of a pretty and elegant little girls room.


Sunday, April 24, 2011

And Then There's 5

This post has nothing to do with quilting or sewing of any sorts - but this is just as exciting.  The birds - sparrows? - has returned to our hanging planter basket.  Last year they laid 4 eggs, so this year we waited anxiously to see another round of eggs -

First came the nest:

Before you knew it there were 3 beautiful little eggs:

Then FOUR :) - just like last year:

And then - to our surprise - there were 5!:

It's truly a magically and beautiful thing to witness. Each day we watch the mommy bird sit on the eggs (the basket is almost at eye level). I think she's starting to trust us a bit more as each day goes on. First she'll fly away the second she hear us coming, now she sits and observes and usually do not fly away right away.

There is one downside though. The nesting process and lack of frequent watering - I keep the watering of that planter box to a minimal to avoid disturbance to the nest but enough to keep the flowers alive - the flowers in the planter basket is starting to struggle. I want to keep the plants alive because I think the birds like the foliage for privacy and food.  Hopefully the flowers will not all die out :(.  Last year I was able to keep the last of the plants alive until the first of the birds hatched.


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Fabric Giveaway WINNER: Polka Dots!

The lucky winner this week is Lindsay Conner!

Congrats Lindsay and thanks for joining in - contact me soon and let me know which of these 2 fabrics you would like and an address I can mail them to - within the USA please :). 

And THANK YOU for everyone that played this week - it was awesome reading all your comments.  Great to know that there is such a shared love for these little cuties.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Weekend Wrapup and Washcloth Tutorial

This past weekend was very easy going.  We spent most of Saturday out and about - hanging out with great friends and enjoying the beautiful weather.  Sunday was family time and spending time around the house.

One of the small projects I'm working on are washcloths/burp-cloths.  I don't know why, but I LOVE making these things.  I guess they are like teeny tiny little blankets :).


And the results? A super cute, super soft, all-purpose...did I mention super cute??...washcloth/burp-cloth/all-purpose-cloth :). For the front I use some of my favorite fabrics around the studio - all 100% quality cotton of course. For the backing I used an French Terry 100% organic cotton.

Have you ever worked with French Terry before? It is the softest , coziest terry cloth I have ever used. Though I must say - it is a little troublesome to work with. The ends curl up a bit if you try to pull on it too much. The key is to keep it from pulling in any one direction too much and keep it flat. Here's an example of the curling:


Don't worry the curling isn't permanent and doesn't happen once the fabric is securely sewn in place.

I cut each of the fabrics - backing and front into rectangles - 10" x 15". The finished washcloth is about 9.5" by 14.5".


Put the right sides together, sew edges with 1/4" seam allowance leaving an opening about 6 inches wide. Using the opening flip the washcloth right side out, press all corners and edges flat and sew about 1/8" all the way around.

With a little bit of practice you too can make these little guys - great for use around the house, makes for a great baby gift and definitely eye candy for any room :).



Friday, April 15, 2011

Fabric Love #11 & Fabric Giveaway: Polka Dots!

What's round, playful and goes with everything???  Polka Dots!  OK it may not go with EVERYTHING but I sure try to use it as often as I can.  That's why I'm excited to share this weeks' fabric love - for the love of dots.  My personal stash consist of ... ummm a lot of dots, but I only have 4 available at JAQS Fabrics.  Not to bore with my whole collection, I'll pick the 4 I have available for sale for the Polka Dot fabric love.

First up is Vintage Dots from Michael Miller.  It is a playful spin on the concept of "dots".  These wiggly edged dots are super cute!

What do you get when you mix 2 of awesome things: dots and food.  This yummy fabric from David Textiles.  This is definitely one fabric I've been itching to use in a design.

Last but not least we have classical dots.  Polka dot fabric comes in many sizes and colors.  It's great to have a few of these in the stash.  Both these are from Michael Miller. 

Hope you enjoyed viewing these dots :).  And now on to this weeks' fabric giveaway.  Leave a comment to this post by Tuesday 9pm(PST) for a chance to win 2 of these polka dot fabrics - YOUR CHOICE - 1/2 yard each fabric type :).

Enter to win 2 (1/2 yard each, 1 yard combined) - your choice - of these fabrics.  Just leave a comment and I'll pick a random winner Tuesday night. 

Good luck!


Do You Applique?

I do ... once in a while.  Love doing it but it does take a bit of effort.  For the Framed Blooms quilt I got a chance to do more applique - fabulous :).

A bit of tracing, pressing then clipping and you get a nice looking pile of scraps.  Do you think quilting is a beautiful process?  I certainly do.  Even a pile of scraps begs to be looked at and appreciated.

Of course the results of applique is pretty nice too :P.  After putting together 6 of these framed blooms I was quite happy with the results.  Piecing the quilt top continues...


Monday, April 11, 2011

Weekend Wrapup

You know you have had a productive sewing room weekend when this is how the room looks like by Sunday night:


Did I mention that is the NEATER part of the room? EEK!    A lot of organizing and cleaning up to do.  When the room gets this messy it's actually not all that productive to work in it.  I spend countless minutes shuffling through piles of fabrics, loosing design pages, random pins everywhere and rearranging the cutting table to get a few inches of workable space.  I don't know about you but I HATE it.  All the while I'm thinking I should stop now and clean up.  Next time I'm in that room I will tidy up!

With that said, I did manage to do a lot of cutting and sewing despite the mess.  Here's a sneak peak of two quilts I have been working on:

Framed Flowers - A look at the 'Frame'

Pretty Bricks

Here's to another productive week and some much-needed cleaning :).


Sunday, April 10, 2011

Fabric Love #10

Blooms are popping up this week :).  I am loving the gentle flowers from Michael Miller and Henry glass:

I am using Summertime in a new quilt design I'm working on.  I'll be sharing it shortly.  I love delicate but playful florals of both these fabrics.

Two other fabrics that I am featuring this week is also from Michael Miller.  Their blooms are gorgeous.  I used the Poppy fabric for Child's Play-Kohana a little while back and very excited to be able to get my hands more to work with.  The yellow floral is called Blooming Tulips.  Gorgeous isn't it?  

Hope you enjoyed looking at these beautiful fabrics :).


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Belated Weekend Wrapup :)

Been such a whirlwind around here I even forgot to give a wrap up of the weekend.

The weather was GORGEOUS this weekend. Our tulips popped in our new little tulip path. I even got a chance to plant some strawberries, beans and tomatoes. Love being in the garden again after a long winter. I also got in a shipment of Michael Miller fabric. Can't wait to start cutting and sewing with the new yummy fabrics :).


Speaking of cutting and sewing - I am well on my way to my next quilt. Can't wait to show it off.


There's also Spring Wheels #2. I finally finished up the quilting for it. Took way longer than the first quilt. You would think straight lines would be faster to quilt than curly right? Well that's what I thought at least and I was wrong. To quilt along each of the pinwheels took way longer than I expect.  But like any difficult project, the work is always worth it in end.



Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Fabric Giveaway WINNER

Congratulations to Julie - you are the owner of the Fabric Giveaway #9.

We'll get in touch and get the fabrics to you ASAP :).
1/2 yard each of the Shavings and Hounds-tooth from Michael Miller
Thanks for everyone who played along this week!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Fabric Love #9 and GIVEAWAY: No Florals...

I've been seeing A LOT of florals lately - it's spring!  But this week I'm going to go away from florals for a little bit.  I'm going back to some basic prints that have caught my eyes and have given me a small break from pretty least for a little bit :P.

Color without the Floral:

Maybe some Houndstooth:

Or some gorgeous alternatives to solids:

Now for this weeks' Fabric Giveaway:
1/2 yard each of the Shavings and Hounds-tooth from Michael Miller!  How to enter to win?  Just become a follower of JAQS Studio (if not already) and leave a comment for this post by Tuesday 4/5/11 evening for a chance to win.  Thanks for joining in and have a great weekend.



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