Saturday, September 14, 2013

Halloween Giveaway

To all of the people I know in real life and cyber life... Halloween is a great time for many people. I love the decorations and yummy food of fall and Halloween. This year I thought I would do something super special. At the end of this week, so like Saturday the 22 of September I will be drawing a random number to giveaway a Halloween themed mug rug. 

A mug rug? You ask. Yes, a mug rug is a quilty term for a mouse pad that is used to hold cookies (aka a treat) and a beverage. This giveaway is open to the entire world. I will ship it. 

So, all you have to do is leave me a comment here and make sure I have your email. And I will use a random number generator to select the winner on Saturday, September 22nd. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Squeal! I won.

Thank you very much Lisa from In The Boondocks for the lovely thread. 
I can't wait to play with them.

Monday, September 2, 2013

New plan; new goals

Blogging and posting have seriously changed my way of thinking. Before I kinda thought of a blog as just a journal. Which in some ways it is. Now this "Grand Ambition" has changed. Before I would only write randomly about quitly stuff. My plan is to take each & every quilt I make and give it a post. Some quilts like Sir Duke might end up with multiple posts because he's a beast of a project. But those will probably be few & far between. The point of these posts is to chart my progress as a quilter and to make remarks about what I have learned. 
A few years ago, it has really been that long, I took the process pledge. It includes prompts like: 
  • Do you have any new sketches to show?
  • Is this design inspired by a past quilt or someone else's quilt you saw (link, please)?
  • Does the color palette come from somewhere specific?
  • Are you trying to evoke a specific feeling?
  • Is this quilt intended for a specific person?  How did that inform your choices?
  • Are you following a pattern, emulating a block you saw somewhere, using a liberated process, or totally winging it?
  • What are you hating about this quilt at this stage?  What do you love?
  • Did you push yourself to try something new?
  • In working on the quilt, are you getting ideas about what you might want to try next?  What?  Did you sketch it?

Well, I have never posted my follow through of this pledge. 

So this is a new go. Wish me luck on the follow through.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Thread, thread, THREAD!

There was a post recently and not so recent that showed really great close up photos of thread from many of the makers out there. It was highly enlightening. This post caused me to go through all of my thread and sell my non-compatible treads. All of my rayon & polyester threads are for sale here:

This is the post that got me thinking: favorite tools aurifil thread
Which then led me to this post: your sewing thread under microscope
My response to those posts was... ahh, that makes total sense now. These 2 posts, I am sure there are more out there on the subject, confirmed what my hands were telling me. I am super picky about the fabric I use. I should have been better about the threads as well. My deepest apologies to the folks who have polyester thread for quilting and other parts. I was unaware. Now to have the funds to add the awesome Aurifil threads to my stash.  

What's in a Name?

I grew up with TS Elliot's Naming of Cats...
The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,
It isn't just one of your holiday games;
You may think at first I'm as mad as a hatter
When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.
First of all, there's the name that the family use daily,
Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo or James,
Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey--
All of them sensible everyday names.
There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,
Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames:
Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter--
But all of them sensible everyday names.
But I tell you, a cat needs a name that's particular,
A name that's peculiar, and more dignified,
Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular,
Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?
Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum,
Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat,
Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum-
Names that never belong to more than one cat.
But above and beyond there's still one name left over,
And that is the name that you never will guess;
The name that no human research can discover--
But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.
When you notice a cat in profound meditation,
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation
Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name:
His ineffable effable
Deep and inscrutable singular Name.

So they mean something to me. All of our pets, 5 in total, have chosen their names much like the poem above. 

Now my sewing machines are getting names. First my Janome 1600P is named Beast from the X-men. It is a brilliant workhorse. My older Janome HeartTruth needs one, Gambit is coming to mind. As the machine has many tricks but runs a bit less powerful than Beast. Might try to stick with the Comic theme. Then there is the Treadle gift to me by my dad; it will need a name. And if I ever get the machine from the gal I used to work with there's another name. Eek, now I am in a slight panic about the names. 

I have even fretted over the name of this blog and the title to which the header is. Titan Pink was the name of a video game character that I made & fell madly in love. She was awesome. Then the title herein "Grand Ambition." Truly seems fitting. As I still feel it is quite some work to make and keep up this blog. One could say that I haven't hit my stride yet. Though I think I am doing better. 

I also fidget over the names of the quilts I make. Making sure that name gets on the quilt has been a process. It's not like in art I can just say the name is xxxxx and it was done xxxx. Now I have to create a label so that the person receiving the quilt knows this forever. S@#$, s@#$, s@#$! 

All of that being said, I do love quilting and its infinite ways of creativity. 

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Least favorite step

So here I was making a facebook post that just blew up into a rant. As to not offend any of the quilters there I thought the rant would do better here.

My weekend plan is to finish the quilts that are almost done I need 2 things: basting spray & thread. Guess I will either work on my hand piecing projects or start other quilts that have been in the planning stages. One quilt I ran out of thread 3/4 of the way though quilting it. ARG! Really I could use a third thing: backing fabric for the Batman quilt that is ready to go as well.

I need the basting spray because I don't like the results of pin or thread basting. Especially after DH pointed out that he things the true definition of insanity lies in pin/thread basting.

I really dislike basting. I wish it wasn't such a needed step. So much work for a temporary need. I guess the only way around not basting is getting a frame for my Beast. (Yes, I have named my main machine.) Or take them to the longarm shop. Hmm. Naw, I like quilting in my house with my music and such like.

My train of thought is quite scattered today. Just writing about the name of the machine spawned another post. And above where I mentioned thread, well keep your eyes open for that post as well.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Leona's Quilting Adventure: Bloggy Giveaway...a little Tula Pink and....

Leona's Quilting Adventure: Bloggy Giveaway...a little Tula Pink and....: Happy Tuesday! Tomorrow is over the hump day! I hope that the beginning of your week is going along well! It is time for another Bloggy Giv...

Monday, August 26, 2013

Maybe a bit too Grand

So it seems my ambition is a bit to grand for this blog. Or blogging in general. I have yet to reach my goals of weekly or monthly posting. I love the idea of a blog and blogging . I just can't seem to motivate myself into writing. Maybe I should pick a word to work towards this year... motivate, start, create or DO. Maybe not DO as my title is Division Order Analyst. I DO all day long at work.

Current projects include:
  1. Dad's quilt ~ Northwest fabric in golds, blacks and blues in Bricks from Mountainpeek Creations. This was done for his birthday, but the batting bearded thus I have frogged and will requilt. 
  2. James' quilt ~ Batman
  3. Hootenanny ~ Brown, blue and green scraps from Dare to be Square Quilting; this one was almost done. I, however, disliked the quilting. So I just need to rebaste and set to motion.
  4. Rob & Solli's quilt ~ Red riding hood's path. Just needs a border then to be finsihed.
  5. Liam & Robbie's quilts ~ each are getting 1/2 of supermariobrothers; I can't wait to get the pattern from the printer.
  6. Sir Duke ~ a 4 foot by 7 foot hexi quilt of a gargoyle. The hexi's are 3/4 inch. There will be about 2695 hexi's.
  7. Steven & Sara's quilt is from Quilt Remix, the pattern is Log Cabin.
  8. I have started creating a plush toy for a baby. Super cute, paper pieced triangles. 
  9. The Happy Mochi Yum Yum fabric has begun its transformation into a quilt along. I can't wait to see the blocks. EXCITEMENT is building. 
Projects in the planning stages
  1. Flying geese pattern for my papa
  2. Ghastlies
  3. A quilt for my sister
  4. My Aunt & Uncle want a quilt
  5. Tons of folks in my life want a quilt.
  6. And my genius (sarcastically said) self has decided to make quilts for a pay it forward project that started this past January.
I know there are more. I am just running out of steam. The idea of posting photos is wonderful, except for all of the work of editing them. 

Since I am at it... I think I will end this post with a TTFN. And go start a post for each project in the works. 

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Queen of Hexagons ~ I so want to be ;)

I  have to say that I am in love with paper piecing. I can spend hours just stitching away on them. I have done bowls and now am working on this lovely little toy. 

 This is crown 1 of 4. The pattern is from Kid Giddy

And I am still working on my gargoyle. Here is an image of the entire quilt laid out.

And this is the progress that I have made. He is to be about 4 feet by 7 feet. The hexagons are 3/4 inch. There is about 2700 of them. The photo had to be taken on an angle because I wanted the whole width in the shot. 

Holy cow, I have posted more this week than almost ever before. Don't get me wrong. I think about posting in regards to the projects that I am working on; then for one reason or another (like being too into the project to stop and take pictures.) Or writing a post feels like Blahhhh-ging. Or, or, or... I am trying to step up my game. The new goal is to write what I have learned in each project I tackle. 

And ending a post... how? Good bye for now? Sure. This time. Maybe ciao bellas next time. Of even TTFN!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Lessons Learned

I am a learner. Constantly looking for new things and improvements on older things. 

In search of quilting better and better, I have found the following things that make my quilts (IMHO) better.

1. Glue basting ~ precise piecing using glue basting; thank you Alyssa

2. This way of finishing the binding, but not her way of stitching the binding: Missouri Star ~ Binding. I didn't take a picture of the finished binding but I did, what I know know as, an applique stitch. So pretty in my opinion.

3. I am in love with EPP and handwork. By handwork, I mean making quilts and other projects while sitting comfortably on the couch. This little project came from: busy Monday Accuquilt go modular star. I didn't mean to choose the say type of fabric. I am in love with it so far.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Busy bee

So, when I got back to work after 2 weeks in Dallas, there was to be a mid-year review. That didn't happen. What I got instead was a call to HR to tell me that I was too difficult to work with. So, since then I have been at the machine. Please forgive the photo heavy post. I have finished 2 quilts. 4 tops are ready to be basted, no photos of those at the moment. And these wonderful paper pieced boxes.

First off, the quilts. This one is called Cherries Jubalie: 
The pattern Rubic's Crush was from 101 Patchwork Projects + Quilts and the most of the fabric was donated by Wooden Spools. I did the front of the binding by hand & have to say that I am in love with it. I need to remember to give myself enough time to do so from now on.

The other quilt has been titled "Country Rose"
The pattern and fabric for the front was donated by Holly's Quilt Cabin. The pattern is Square Dancer by Mountainpeek Creations.

Then there are these bowls. I made 2 of each kind, with help from DH and the gals running the auction. 


Not a total fan of the boxes. Maybe next time I can take my time on them. 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Project 50 Stars

The last 2 years at work I have help and participated in the Holiday Market. The idea came when the folks on the Angel Tree needed things that were on the higher end of the cost spectrum: like tires and mattresses.

Last year, I didn't make a quilt. But the quilt for the Market brought in quite the fundage. It was a very patriotic quilt.

My idea was to have the Veterans and Active Military help me create blocks to go into a quilt. Alas, no one really responded. 

On my way to work the other day, I had the idea to make 50 hopefully different stars. From there piece them into the "next" auction quilt. 

The first pinned block:

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Giveaway & new post

Golly, it has been a long time since I last posted anything. Been super busy and most things end up on Facebook. My Bad. I shall endeavor to be better. 

To the giveaway: Freckled Whimsy is giving away some yummy solids and thread here: sponsor-giveaway
Pretty isn't it?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Plotting along

A few years ago I took Rossie's pledge to show progress. Up until now, I would sit down to work on a quilt and the next thing I knew it was done. Yesterday was a first. I actually grabbed a snapshot of all of the pieces cut & on the wall. 

And then another of the design. 

Now this quilt started as a request from my mother to make her a quilt that was part of a duvet cover. So, here I am wondering what the best way to quilt it is? I plan on using very light batting as to make going over the seams easier. (A lesson learned in another quilt). 

While dearest mother was visiting, the quilt conversation happened, as it does with everyone I meet... will you make me a quilt? So, mother & I went shopping for ideas and so that I could make sure she loved her quilt. (For more that the fact that I made it for her.) I know she loves Art Nouveau and much of the art from the 1920's. So we found this panel: 

It is the perfect color combination and style she loves.

Next I had to come up with the pattern, that was a long process. Trying to find a way to showcase the panel and be large enough to cover a queen size comforter. Then came the buying & cutting. Yes, a good portion of the fabric came from my stash. I still needed to buy a bit more, mostly to round out the design. 

Now, I am trying to think about the quilting. So far, we, Hubs & I, have agreed that we will most likely use 3 colors for the quilting, Aurifil variegated in greens, creams and pinks. I am trying to determine if I need to take the duvet cover apart to quilt it? As mother wants to be able to put a comforter inside. If I don't take it apart how difficult is it going to be to quilt the upper corners? And what type of quilting. We, Hubs & I, know that the more it's going to be used the more it needs to be quilted, but how, is the question?

Friday, January 25, 2013

Left overs

I have a question...

As a beginner, I have bought threads that I wanted to quilt with and for one reason or another my machines didn't like them. I have in some cases almost entire spools of thread.

What do you do with it?