Nightshade

At the end of February I had the glorious opportunity to attend a weekend quilting retreat with my quilt guild (Dallas Modern Quilt Guild).  Most of the time retreats are out of my reach financially, but this one was going to be an in town retreat at a newly opened retreat space, Best Little Retreat Center in Texas.  I had been so looking forward to this retreat because I pretty much have done no sewing or quilting since the in town retreats the Dallas Quilt Guild put on ended.  And sadly, I haven’t even posted about the last couple I went to, but at the first one I finished my Tula’s Squirrels quilt top.  But, I think the last retreat we had was like in June of 2016, so yeah, it’s been THAT LONG since I sewed.  So, you understand when I tell you how excited I was to be able to sew all weekend long!

I started out the weekend by working on my Pixel Heart mini that I started with my Tula Pink Elizabeth fabric that a friend gifted me.

 

I had been inspired by Diana, itiskismet_stitches, to start this mini.  She had been encouraging me to sew a little bit, even if I could only do ten or fifteen minutes at a time, it would add up.  So in November of 2017, I started sewing my squares together.  And then I managed to get a few rows sewn.  But, in true to me fashion I ended up sewing a row upside down and then it sat there from November until the end of February with no movement.

 

 

So the first thing I did when I got my table set up was rip out that row and resew it the right way round.  I managed to get the whole thing sewn up relatively quickly.

I was a bit undecided on how to quilt it but I did a bit of searching around on IG for some inspo and also consulted the expert (Diana).  In the end, we decided that cross-hatching on the diagonal was the way to go.  And I’m pretty thrilled with it.  I also got the opportunity to try a hera marker for the first time.  And when I used it my lines were so much straighter and more even!  I got the binding sewn on and now it just needs to be hand sewn to the back.  Not a bad start to a sewing weekend!

Next project on my list was to get started on my Nightshade quilt.  I had started cutting this out at one of the other in town retreats, so I was able to keep going and get all the smaller pieces cut, including my background fabric which is the black & white moons and stars.

Then I started on the hard part.  Cutting out the cameos from the Coven fabric.  It is no joke cutting into precious fabric that you have no way of replacing if you screw up!

But I managed to get it done.  It is a pain the ass fussy cutting those though (as I learned with my Parisville quilt).

And one of the best things about the retreat center is that you also get your own design wall!  This is how mine was shaping up on day 1.

It’s always fun seeing what everyone else is working on too.  My friend Karen was busy making these fabric baskets for friends.  This is the one she made for me.  Isn’t it perfect?!

A little peek around the room…

And let’s just take a closer look at that Tula quilt in progress.

I so enjoyed being able to watch this one come together.  It is so so pretty and vibrant in person!

On day 2, Sunday, I continued on with my Nightshade quilt.  Now that I had all those lovely ladies cut out I could start making my blocks.  I added the corners to each of the blocks to start making “snowballs”.

And you may notice a slight issue with the block second from the bottom on the right side.  Yeah, I don’t have any of the blue storm cloud fabric.  Like none, except for that small scrap my friend Lee was willing to spare.  Not sure what I’m going to do, but I’m guessing I’m going to beg the Tula Troops to take pity on me and trade some storm clouds for cameos.  But, I soldiered on with my other blocks.  I added the borders around each block.

And then I started adding the background fabric on the corners of each.  Yeah, that one block is looking pretty darn sad now.  But OMG I am so freaking in love with this already.  It’s going to be SO GOOD when it’s done.  I can’t wait.

And here’s what the whole thing will look like more or less…

So, my next step will be to finish adding the background corners to the rest of the blocks and then start on the sashing strips and cornerstones.  Can’t wait!

 

So, all in all it was an awesome weekend.  I got to visit with friends, I got to sew and reinvigorate my creativity, I got to see inspiration from others, and I even got to witness a finished quilt top.  How amazing is that?!

I am grateful for finally finally getting to sew again!

Episode 51: Nevermore

Thank you so much for tuning in to the Cozyegg flosstube/podcast! In this episode I share a finish for the #eapmacabre SAL and some WIP progress.
The #eapmacabre SAL is hosted by Amy and Jenn in the Bewitched Stitches group on Facebook and Instagram.
Finish:
  • Quote the Raven (which bugs me every time I type it) by Cross-Eyed Cricket from the Two Familiars leaflet.  Stitched with DMC on a 32ct linen I dyed myself.

WIPs:

  • Hex on the Beach – EPP (English Paper Piecing) quilt with Tula Pink’s Saltwater fabric line
  • Pixel Heart mini quilt with Tula Pink Elizabeth fabric
  • Snowglobe quilt pattern by Tula Pink with Tula Pink Nightshade fabric
  • Hallow Eden by Plum Street Samplers on 32ct hand dyed linen with the called for Classic Colorworks and Weeks threads

Gifts:

  • Fabric basket with Paris fabric

Shout Outs:

Nail Polish: Sinful Colors San Francisco

Flosstube Episode 50: And Now For Something Completely Different

 

Thank you so much for tuning in to the Cozyegg flosstube/podcast! In this episode I share a finish and some quilting plans.

Finishes:

  • Tree from Trick or Treat by Praiseworthy Stitches from JCS Halloween 2012 issue.  Added to my Halloween neighborhood piece.  Here’s what the original piece looks like.

Quilting:

  • Marcelle Medallion
  • Pixel Heart mini quilt
  • Nightshade Snowglobe quilt
  • Hex on the Beach EPP quilt

I Just Want Your Extra Time…

Kiss Kiss blocks
Remember that time, a million years ago, when I shared my almost-finished Kiss Kiss quilt top?  You know, the one I worked on at a weekend retreat?  At the end of that weekend, I only needed to sew my borders on for the top to be finished.  So, a couple weeks after that retreat I settled in at my brand new work surface/desk top to get those borders on.

New Sewing Space
 

It really took no time at all to have my quilt top finished but I’m glad I didn’t try to rush it at the retreat and just waited until I had more time to focus on it.

Kiss Kiss Blocks Close
I cannot wait to get this one quilted.  It is going out for custom quilting for sure.  In the meantime, I just had to share full photos of my (very wrinkly) top.

Kiss Kiss Finished
Isn’t she beautiful?!  I love how the Eye Drops border looks!

Kiss Kiss Finished Instagram
Details on this quilt:

Pattern is Kiss Kiss by Tula Pink; I made the Large version 82″ x 82″

Fabric is Parisville by Tula Pink in the Pomegranate colorway and Free Spirit Solids for the background

Started in 2012 and top finished in 2014.

Kiss Kiss Finished
 

And just in case you’re wondering what the title of this post is all about.
I am grateful for finally getting around to sharing pics of this quilt!

Oh Look, a Squirrel!

Tula's Squirrels

 

At the Dallas Quilt Show in March of 2013, I spotted this quilt in Material Girl’s booth.  I can spot Tula fabrics a mile away, so I was immediately drawn to this one.  I loved the use of the cool colorways from Tula’s The Birds & The Bees line, the pattern itself, and the use of a Denyse Schmidt plaid from her Chicopee line for binding and backing.  It paired perfectly with the Tula fabrics and I would never have thought to put them together.  They were of course offering a quilt kit for sale but it was outside my budget.  Months went by and I continued to obsess over this quilt.  I have a stack of The Birds & The Bees fabric to make Tula’s Cartwheels quilt, but it is only the warm colorways, so this seemed to be the perfect compliment.  I shared this quilt pic with Sylvia and she immediately fell in love too.  Some googling on the internet brought Sylvia to the free quilt pattern called Five Yard Wonder by Mill End Textiles, which is exactly the pattern used for this quilt.  There was much rejoicing once we knew the pattern it used.  It’s simple enough I felt I could have recreated it, but way easier to follow a pattern.  It is called the Five Yard Wonder because the whole quilt is made with a yard each of five different fabrics.  Time to order fabric!  Luckily, the Tula fabrics were still relatively easy to find so I ordered a yard of each and then enough of the Denyse Schmidt plaid for the backing and binding.  The hard part was the solid.  Sylvia ordered a couple different solids and was able to find one that worked.  I went to Hawthorne Threads’ website and used one of the features I love – you can choose a fabric (in my case I chose the squirrels) and then it shows you coordinating prints, the print in other colorways (if applicable), and then at the bottom coordinating solids.  Lo and behold, Citron was my color.  So I ordered my citron fabric and off we went.

Fussy Cutting Squirrels

I started cutting for this quilt in February of last year.  It was then I discovered a problem.  In order to fussy cut those squirrel blocks, I really needed more than a yard of fabric.  You may remember the podcast episode where I lamented the fact that only half my squirrel blocks had the squirrels facing each other, the rest were comprised of squirrel butts.  Not the look I was going for.  Of course, by this time two years had gone by and the squirrels were impossible to find.  I ended up buying two FQs from etsy sellers at the low price of an arm & a leg.  But, at least I now had all squirrel faces in the blocks.

Tula's Squirrels fabric

In May, I finally had my cutting done and started assembling my quilt blocks.  I had podcasts to keep me company while I sewed, in this case the Must Stash podcast where Dianne from Suburban Stitcher joined.

Sewing with Podcasts

Aren’t those squirrels adorable?

Squirrels

 

Squirrels with borders

Squirrel blocks done and bee blocks completed not long after.

Bee Blocks

And then in June of 2015 I attended my very first “In Town Sewing Retreat”.  This is a retreat put on by the Dallas Quilt Guild and it’s a fun weekend at a local location and we sew all day until midnight then go home to sleep in our own beds and come back the next day.  It runs Friday morning through Sunday afternoon.  So, I decided that working on my squirrel quilt was going to be my top priority.

In Town sewing

I managed to get all my blocks sewn and then started sewing rows together on the first day.

Oh Look, a Squirrel!

On Saturday, I had a completed quilt top!

Squirrel top complete

I’m seriously so in love with it.  But, it wasn’t until I went to send a photo of my quilt to two friends that I noticed the issue.  And strangely enough it was because I was looking at a thumbnail of the photo in the email that I realized something was amiss.  My pattern wasn’t working right.  Do you see it?

Tula's Squirrels quilt top

When I was sewing the blocks together I turned some of them intentionally because I wanted those center bees to be facing different directions.  It never once occurred to me that by doing that, I was also changing the direction of the corner fabrics.  So, I had three blocks going the wrong way.  Ugggghhhhhh!  It took me until September to finally feel like I could face ripping out those blocks to fix them.  And typical me, I went the hard way about it.  I sat down and started ripping off the inner and outer border and then started ripping back to the first block.  Eric saw what I was doing and said, “can’t you just rip out the seams on all sides of the block itself?”  So, I gave that a try and it worked.  I was able to get the three blocks ripped out, turned, and sewed back into the top in the right direction.  Perfect!  Now, time to take a photo of the corrected and complete quilt top.

Oh Look, a Squirrel!

Ummm, yeah.

Oh Look, a Squirrel!

Sure, come stand on that.  I’m not trying to take a photo or anything.

Oh Look, a Squirrel!

So, you’ll just have to take my word for it that all the blocks are the right way round this time and I’m thrilled with my quilt top.  One of these days I’ll take it to be quilted, I can’t wait!

I am grateful for squirrel faces and black spots on my quilt.