All posts by sariditty

Wonderful Things Blog Hop

Howdy, friends! And happy Hump Day! (Do people still say that?!)

Once again, I have the extreme privilege to create with one of Bonnie Christine’s beautiful collections! *heart eyes* Bonnie’s latest collection for Art Gallery Fabrics that’s out and about is called Wonderful Things, and it really truly is full of wonderful things  – lovely colors, uplifting affirmations, inspiring design.

I decided now is the time to finally make a table runner for our sofa console. And Nicole’s and my Deco Hex Pattern that we made via SARIELLA for Stash Builder Box a couple months ago was the perfect pattern for it. Not to worry…it will soon be available via our site for you to nab for yourselves if you like it. I’m kinda partial to it…especially after making this table runner!

I limited myself to 4 prints for the piece. Since our kitchen (pale blue and white) feeds into the family room, which has a HUGE navy blue/bright blue/white area rug and a few pink and purple accents, I opted for these four: Aquarelle Study (Wash), Daydream (Sigh), Splendid Oath (Rain), and Garden Walk (Thistle). I won’t lie…that watercolor floral print makes my heart go pitter pat!

Deco Hex Pattern is a foundation paper piecing pattern that ends up looking like four hexagons sliding out from under the first and graduating in size as they slide out. I really wanted to play with the watercolor floral print, so I ended up making my innermost hexagon a solid white. (You’ll see why…)

My finished table runner is comprised of 22 hexagons – 10 half hexes and 12 full hexes. So being a foundation paper piecing pattern, that means a LOT of papers to dissect away from the fabric sections! 

Once all the papers were out and sections pieced together, I had a table runner begging for some fanciness! So I super duper fussy cut the piece of fabric I had with those lovely watercolor flowers and ended up with the prettiest collection of 22 hexagons ever!Aren’t they just SO pretty?! I glue basted these little floral hexies on to the runner to yield five hexagons within each “tile.”Next up, I quilted semi consistently spaced straight lines along the runner length.

Then the fun part! I decided to use the pink thread (No.2435) in our SARIELLA Aurifil thread collection, which I’ve dubbed “Flamingo Sherbet” because it really is the yummiest and happiest and most soothing shade of pink! Not too blue, not too red…and reminiscent of sangria at sunset! Now who wants to go to the islands and watch flamingos and sip beverages with me?! Ok, back to the thread…I appliquéd around the border of each floral hexie with this pretty pink to give a little bit more of a frame to each flower as it touches the subsequent white hex. (Not yet stitched in this photo below…but it’s such a pretty picture so here it is pre-appliqué.)

Before my runner could find its “home” on our console table (which we’ve had since January), I knew this was the kick in the pants I needed to *finally* finish it. Sure, raw oak is pretty and all, but I’d been hemming and hawing for months on whether or not to stain it or paint it. Since we purchased this home as a deserted foreclosed mess, we’ve been nonstop updating and changing and renovating. (Yes, don’t worry…those hideous floors are on our list!) I decided to go with my tried and true Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in French Linen, which is also what our kitchen island and pantry doors are painted so there’s good flow!

Four hours later, it was painted and drying while I finished up the binding on the runner. If I were smart, I’d have measured the entire thing to tell you what the finished dimensions are, but I didn’t…and it’s currently packed in my suitcase for my flight to Albuquerque tomorrow morning. So there’s my failing moment during all this. Hah! It’s roughly 60″ x 14″ give or take.

That little blue and white print is seriously the cutest and most perfect print for binding! And I just love how it ties into our area rug so well!

And there we have it!! Our finished sofa console table all pretty and perfect and finally finished! Now let’s take bets on how long it is before my husband manages to spill a drink on it… HAHAHA!

I hope you enjoyed this project’s process! I sure enjoyed making it and watching it come together from start to finish. And a special thank you to Bonnie for inviting me in to her tribe to work on this. My heart has a special place for her – she was the very first fabric designer I came upon when I got into quilting 3 years ago. I just thought fabric was fabric. Little did I know that there were a whole slew of fabulous designers…each with their own specialty and known design elements. I fell head over heels with her Winged collection, and that was that…I became a forever Bonnie Christine fan from that moment on!

Be sure to check out the other contributors so far on this hop, as well as all those to come as August rolls on by! Click HERE to check it out! I’ll be posting a few more pics to my Instagram (@sariditty) and Facebook pages as the day goes by – hope you enjoy them!

Thanks so much for stopping by!
Hugs & Stitches – xo –

 

Saving the best for last… (that’s not me, that’s tomorrow!)

Earlier this year, Art Gallery Fabrics offered me the chance to play with their new Capsules and Fusions collections. Believe me…there are some gorgeous prints in both those, and you should seriously take a gander at them if you haven’t yet. I immediately knew I had to try this luscious new rayon blend I spied. It’s designed by Maureen Cracknell and is one of the prettiest florals I’ve had my hands on in awhile! I have been itching to make a McCall’s pattern I’ve had for some time now, and this was the perfect opportunity to finally do it. Around the same time, Mister Domestic asked me to be a part of his sewing party showcasing the new AGF Capsules and Fusions lines, sooooo that timing worked out way too well in my opinion!

I went ahead and prepped the fabric for my stab-in-the-dark attempt to make my dress. I mean, it says “easy” on the envelope, so it couldn’t be too tough, right?! To prep, I washed the entire fabric cut with warm water and ran it through the dryer twice each. Why twice, you ask? Because that’s what I was told to do by a rayon aficionado. By washing and drying it twice, you eliminate a ton of shrinkage risk after the garment is made. And if you were a Seinfeld fan, then you know all about how bad shrinkage is. I also added a couple Color Catcher sheets to my wash since this fabric is so saturated and bold. No chances here for colors bleeding and running into each other. Also to note, rayon can become stretched out very easily if it’s pulled too taut or scrunched too much or looked at crosseyed or told a bad joke. I immediately gently folded it up after the final dryer cycle.

Enter LIFE. Crap, crap, crap, I won’t ever have time to get this done, crap. Donuts. Prosecco. Pizza. Sweats. No bra. Not joking. Not to mention…a garment sewist, I am not. Not really anyway. Not compared to the pros or even to tomorrow’s Fusions contributor who is a mad scientist genius with her garment sewing skillz. For realz.

It’s now the end of March, and I was packing my bags to head to work an event in Albuquerque for a week. *Perfecto* My mom and dad live in the ABQ East Mountains, so I knew good and well I could take advantage of my know-all amazeballz garment sewing mother on this trip! When I say she sews, trust me…she was the one who would sew matchy outfits for me and my two younger sisters when we were little. By the time I hit 12yo, I was done with that matchy nonsense. But I am so, so thankful she is amazing at this craft and especially last month when I was traveling out their way. Into my carry-on went the rayon and my pattern! “Ohhhh, Meeeeeeem!!! I need help, pleeeeease!” (She also posts some beautiful New Mexico scenery, quilty makes, and her motorcycle escapades on Instagram: @cnytz51.)

For the record, it was not just me thinking this particular pattern was written poorly. My momma confirmed that the order of operations was not well thought out and led to a few areas that I’m ultimately not thrilled with. But unless I point them out to you pointblank, I don’t think you’re noticing them either. So my lips are zipped because I love the feel of this dress too much to dampen it with any cloud of doom.

Notes for Working with Rayon:
1. Use a sharp rotary blade and cutting mat, preferably on the floor to prevent fabric from draping off a table and pulling/stretching
2. Use fine tip, sharp pins
3. Lift & Press, don’t drag, the iron
4. After cutting a pattern piece, roll it up and set aside to prevent pulling/stretching
5. Use a smidge smaller stitch length compared to piecing a quilt top (i.e. 2mm)
6. Let your garment hang loose and relax for a day or so before hemming
7. Run, don’t walk, to purchase yourself some AGF rayon! It’s divine!!!

Look at this drape!!! It’s soooooo delicious! Obviously I was NOT a model in any former lifetime! hahaha I would so much rather be behind the camera or staging things than the object on which the lens is focusing. Ugh. *paranoia*

Did you see last week’s and all of this week’s makers so far? There are some really inspiring ideas to add to your To Do Lists, like, ASAP!

Capsules (April 17 – 21):
Monday: Cristy Stuhldreher (@loveyousew_) http://www.iloveyousew.com/
Tuesday: Kitty Wilkin (@nightquilter) https://nightquilter.com/
Wednesday: Sharon McConnell (@colorgirlquilts) http://colorgirlquilts.com/
Thursday: Stephanie Palmer (@latenightquilter) http://latenightquilter.com/
Friday: Nicole Young (@lillyellasworld) http://lillyella.com

Fusions (April 24th – 28th)
Monday: Nicole Daksiewicz (@modernhandcraft) http://modernhandcraft.com/
Tuesday: Tara Curtis (@WEFTYneedle) http://www.tjaye.com/
Wednesday: Melissa LeRay (@ohhowsweetco) http://www.ohhowsweet.com/
Thursday: Sarah Thomas (@sariditty) That’s me!!
Friday: Jennifer Rossotti (@jennrossotti) http://gingerpeachstudio.com/

Last but not least…I will leave you with some outtakes from this afternoon that left me in tears laughing and then covered in a slimy coating of Neapolitan Mastiff dog drool and Thoroughbred mud from the farm!

I am *beyond* ladylike! Hah!But seriously…that drape!!! Gahhhhhh!!!

Petronus, the 10 month Neapolitan Mastiff puppy!

Thank you for stopping by and joining along on this blog hop!
Until next time…
-xo-

Modern Triangle Quilts Blog Tour

Happy Thursday, friends!

Rebecca Bryan’s most recent finish is a fun new book for Stash Books called Modern Triangle Quilts. I am so blessed to know and call this talented woman a dear friend of mine and am so excited to add this book to my collection right next to her last book Modern Rainbows. You really need to check that one out, too, if you haven’t yet! It’s serious eye candy!

Becca’s ability to take two of my favorite things – geometry (a.k.a. math) and solid colors – and create eye-catching pieces is so awesome. In this book, you’ll see a variety of equilateral, isosceles, and right angle triangles as well as a handful of fun pattern ideas. Or be adventurous…mix them all up into a triangle mosh pit of angular fun to create your own unique layout.

CHARITY QUILT & RAFFLE:

To promote her new book, Becca asked a few of her friends to create a block for a charity quilt she has planned. She curated a color palette based on the extensive color library of Kona solids by Robert Kaufman. Isn’t this palette so calming and serene?!

With this palette and the triangle theme, I knew at once which fabrics to dig out of my stash. I’m always, always a sucker for metallics and glitter, and it’s no secret I adore the lovely pima cotton that Art Gallery Fabrics has. Prisma Elements was my obvious fabric choice! I used 50wt. Aurifil to piece my strips together for tight and flat seams. (Tight and flat…makes me recall my rear end in the ’90s!)

Once she received all our “blocks,” she combined them into yet another quilt pattern, which she named Well Wishes. And get this…you could win this quilt!

Becca is running a raffle by selling a limited time pattern for this very quilt through her shop. The pattern is only $5 and you can purchase the pattern as many times as you like – each purchase counts as an entry!

All proceeds of the sales from the Well Wishes PDF pattern will go directly to Living Water International. You can read more about this project over on the Bryan House Quilts Blog.

GIVEAWAY!!

Stash books is also giving away one copy of Modern Triangle Quilts to one of you! (A hard copy to a U.S. resident or an e-book copy to an international winner.) Entries will be accepted until April 18th, and I’ll announce winners by the 21st.

TO ENTER TO WIN: JUST LEAVE ME A COMMENT TELLING ME WHAT COLOR COMBO YOU WOULD CHOOSE IN ANY SOLIDS TO CREATE YOUR MODERN TRIANGLE MASTERPIECE!

Also be sure to visit all of the other awesome stops on the blog – rumor has it you can enter to win a book over on their blogs as well! How’s that for upping your chances?!

Thanks for stopping by, y’all! Wishing you luck on the giveaway, and please donate to the raffle to support Living Water International!

xo Sarah

Web Extra: Pretty Purses

If you’ve seen Issue 17 of Modern Quilts Unlimited, then you surely spotted these three pretty purses made with Lecien Fabrics Jelly Clips. You can follow along on making the small scrap buster, medium embroidered, and large ruched purses by heading over to MQU’s Web Extras section.

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Below are the English translations of for these 3 purses. All instructions are basically the same as far as construction…only the size of the purse body template fluctuates. The actual size and shape of the template is included with each Jelly Clip package; the following images depicted are not accurate for template sizing.

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Fabric used for these purses is Oasis by Flaurie & Finch for RJR Fabrics.img_9544

The small purse is a perfect opportunity to use up remaining fabric scraps or trimmings. More details on full construction of this particular purse can be found on the MQU site. img_0417

The medium purse utilized Lecien Cosmo Floss to embellish the fabric’s print. img_9546
Three stitches were used on this fabric: satin stitch, French knots, star stitch. img_9558

The large purse is perfect for adding 3D texture. I decided to ruche both sides of the purse exterior, which finished with a super cute and unique purse. img_9800

 

Be sure to take a look at the online tutorial via MQU’s Web Extras section!

Happy sewing!

 

Blog Tour: Hello, Ollie by Bonnie Christine

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Happy Wednesday, friends! I’m happy to share a bit about the soft and lovely Hello, Ollie collection by the ever-s0-talented Bonnie Christine today. I really enjoyed being set free to make a couple minis for Bonnie’s booth at Spring Market. The fabrics were inspired by the sweetness of swans, feathered fellows, and garden blooms and pay tribute to Bonnie’s newest addition, daughter Ollie. This collection is also Art Gallery Fabrics‘ first all organic collection. As with all of the other AGF substrates, with AGF Organics, you will feel the difference. They have taken the time to create a custom organic weave, so that you get all of the greatness of a 100% certified organic cotton cloth base, dyed with eco-friendly low impact inks, and mixed with the unmatched quality of design and hand that characterizes Art Gallery Fabrics.

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The whimsy and cuteness abounds in this sweet collection. It was so hard to decide what to make with so many fun options dancing through my head. I settled on 2 mini quilts to be framed for her booth display.

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The first mini really reflects the carefree and romantic touches of the collection. I concentrated on the swans for this piece — fussy cutting larger and smaller swans to applique on to a rippling pond of fabrics with a line of swans flying overhead. Small metallic accents (thread, piping, quilting) were a *must* as well as floss-tied bows around the swans necks. The batting is a super puffy (inexpensive, mega lofty from Walmart) to give tons of dimension to this piece. I really wanted the effect of billowy clouds, swans in motion, and movement of the water to play into this mini. 
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The second mini was a fun needle turn project using the Everglade Pattern from Carolyn Friedlander. I knew I needed to use the adorable winking eyes in the Meadow Dreams print combined with the deep rose-red Blossom Drift print.

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A spool of 50wt. Aurifil thread in color No. 2277 was the perfect match to the floral print. Even if a few needle turns were off a tad, you can’t see them because of how perfect the color match is. This pattern is so easy! Cut, baste, stitch, press. Done!

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Another cut out swan from the Dabblin Swan print for this mini — outlined with gold metallic thread to give her an extra princess-like sheen. And additional embroidery floss colors chosen to add a quick garden in one of the windows. 
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I just can’t stay away from glitter and metallic apparently…so I crosshatch quilted the window areas in gold as well. I really love this mini so much!

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Of course I encountered a technological breakdown between taking my photos and transferring them to my computer, so I’ve lost close up pics of each finished mini. <super sad face> I hope this booth photo from Spring Market helps give you an idea of how both minis finished up and found their home with Bonnie. The entire booth was so magical and pretty! (And in the above photo…lower right corner is a bag made by one of my besties, Jenn Rossotti. Omigosh…it’s amazing! And you’ll hear from her next week!)

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*That bag!!!!* But more on that from Jenn next week!
Now check out tomorrow’s blog tour stop: Teresa Behr | Dandelion Drift
If you missed yesterday’s stop, then here’s your link to check out Corri Sheff  | The Lions Dandy
The full lineup for Bonnie’s blog tour is here: Blog Schedule

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xo Sarah

 

Coffee, Donuts, Denim…Let’s get back to the essentials.

img_0406As I sit here with my [You Are Here – Alaska] cuppa and big ol’ yeasty glazed donut, I am able to say with certainty that denim completes the morning. I always feel my best when wearing a perfect fitting pair of jeans or my awesome jean jacket I’ve had since high school that has all my aviation wings and my Grandpa’s WWII pin tacked on it. So why wouldn’t a quilt made of (what I consider to be) the coziest, most wonderful denim blends be any less perfect? Survey says…it’s amazing, and once again Art Gallery Fabrics prevails in my quilty endeavors. And I’m so thankful that our West Virginia nights are dipping into the upper 40s to give me a chance to cuddle up under my new quilty child. img_0417

I may have a teeny bit of a history for using bright, full-spectrum color in my projects, which this quilt most definitely has. But what I’m not known for (I don’t think) is a simpler approach to quilt design. Something about this project spoke to me on a more traditional level. I needed to show off the AGF Denim Studio fabric textures and bright colors from the AGF Elements by utilizing an age-old layout for the overall aesthetic for which I was aiming. (And even more…I needed to get this beast done fast!)

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About a year ago or so, I was scrolling through various quilty hashtags and saw a checkerboard quilt with dominant white squares and all these cute little bright printed squares. I think, and can’t say for sure, it was something Rita Hodge of Red Pepper Quilts made. It was super cute, and that’s what I envisioned for this project. I did, however, want to rotate my squares 45-degrees so that the squares were on point. Originally I had intended to make a 102″ x 102″ quilt, but like always, time disappeared as our Denim Tour 2.0 deadline week quickly approached. So I whizzed through as many little squares as I possibly could and ended up finishing at 84″ x 84″. And it’s perfect if you ask me! unnamed-1

Every other square (white) is the new AGF Outland Yarn Dye in Vanilla Mist. The yarn dyes are delicious! Absolutely so soft and cozy and light! Besides the white color, there are also the following: Endless Paradise (tealy blue), Deep Ocean (blue-black), Cherry Crimson (soft red), and Rose Feather (swoon-worthy ballet pink). This family within the Denim Studio are all 4oz/sqm and 100% cotton. I’ll admit, they were a tad bit finicky to press as crisp as I would have liked (as I was able to do with the other fabric contents), but that’s because the fabric is truly an airy and lofty weave. They still stitched up perfectly and yielded a perfect finish. I’m really tempted to buy a few yards of one to make a flowy twirly skirt or summer dress. But that also means I need to decide on a color, and that part is HARD!

I used every one of the eight Solid Smooth Denim colors within this quilt. I’d equate these solids as a chambray type content since there is a white weft and colored warp. I’m really, really a fan of these! They are 4.5oz/sqm, which is more on par with the weight of typical quilting cotton that you use. The fabric itself is 80% cotton/20% poly. They press well, stitch flawlessly, and drape beautifully. I used quite a bit of them in my Observer quilt too — the entire background is Afternoon Sail with some geese using Indigo Shadow, Cool Foliage, Frosted Sage, and Adobe Clay. fullsizerender-2

Ok, back to my denim checkerboard quilt!
Blending the denims with an assortment of Elements fabrics was a MUST. The thirty-six prints below are all used in the quilt. I sometimes wonder if everyone is aware of the AGF Elements section. There are seven types of printed blenders as well as the solids, and every single AGF designer collection can blend in a handful of these pretties to really add an extra pop. I stuck with the Nature, Floral and Oval Elements for this quilt. The only one below that doesn’t really resemble its color in real life compared to the graphic is Floral Element in Scarlet (fifth row, second column). It’s still gorgeous, don’t get me wrong, but it’s definitely a teeny bit darker red in person. unnamed

 

There was zero thought process to color placement in this quilt. Ok, well maybe not zero…but there was very little. I made sure that the mini blocks I made within the quilt didn’t have any repeating prints, but other than that I went “grab bag” style with color distribution. It’s kind of like a big carnival tent quilt in a happy way. (Notice I did *not* say clown outfit. I abhor clowns. Terrified of clowns. Like, worse than spiders or snakes.)

Once my quilt top was pieced, it took a ride on my Handi Quilter Avante. As I mentioned, I wanted to stick to a more traditional feel for this quilt, so I knew my Sketchbook FMQ was out on this one. I scanned through the library of computerized designs and settled on this one below. It’s called something-or-other bubble…so I’m just gonna call it Bubble Bites based on how it looks to me.  Each bubble diameter is about the same scale as the quilt squares, yet offset enough from the squares to not have a regulated/formulated finished appearance. I really like the balance that the curved quilting gives to the loud colors and angles of the fabric print and placement.

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I went with yet another flanged binding for the finishing touch. The main binding is Solid Smooth in Infused Hydrangea with a flange detail using the denim print Fading Darts (also 4.5oz/sqm and 100% cotton). The backing is the most beautiful floral denim, Artic Avens. See that teal color in that print? It just gives me all the heart eyes! And I just love how the flanged print ties into the dark denim color from the backing fabric. img_0408

I promise to get a subsequent post sharing how I make a flange binding too…but right now mega housework and client quilting beckons me. I’ve really enjoyed this quilt-making process. I always enjoy each project’s journey, but this one was a fun step back from having to think out all the details. In the end, I wound up with a cheerful, wonderfully cozy, and perfect-to-me quilt for my bed! img_0411

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Be sure to follow the entire week’s Denim Studio 2.0 blog tour line up! There are some gorgeous things coming from the others…from home dec to apparel to mini quilts and weavy fun! Thanks for stopping by and hanging out with me for a few! You can follow me on Instagram @sariditty for more pics!

Monday- Christopher http://www.thetattooedquilter.com

Tuesday – Nicole www.lillyella.com

Wednesday – Sarah — That’s me!

Thursday – Jenn http://gingerpeachstudio.com/

Friday – Mathew https://misterdomestic.net/

You can also follow along on Instagram with the hashtags #AGFdenimtour2point0 and #thedenimstudiobyAGF.

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xo,

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Fabric Tour: OBSERVER by April Rhodes

April: “Sarah, would you like to be part of my Observe…”
Me: “YES!”
April: “…r fabric tour?”
Me: “Yes, yes, yes, yes, all things holy, YES!!”

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So, as you can probably tell, I was ready to jump head first into this endeavor! I was the epitome of a horse chomping at the bit for this invitation, and let me tell you…I chomped. Hard! And thus the sketching and design process for my Observer quilt came together fast and effortlessly. I mean, with a fabric palette like THIS, how could it not speak to me?

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If you’ve followed me on social media for any length of time, you’re probably wondering how this muted and softer palette speaks to me so well since I often work with bright, vibrant spectrum collaborations. Believe it or not, April’s collections are probably the best reflection of me personally and of my life and style. I grew up going to the North Woods of Wisconsin every summer. Lac du Flambeau, to be exact. We stayed on an Indian reservation; hiked around the lakes; looked for bear prints in the mud; fished for Muskeye and Walleye; canoed until the sun went down. Even now, I consider Sandia Park, NM (situated in the mountains between Santa Fe and Albuquerque) my “home.” My parents moved there 7ish years ago, and it’s been an integral part of my life since then. It’s also where my heart breathes a sigh of contentment and peace. I feel at home there. (I’m actually there right now typing this!)

Particularly, this Observer collection truly spoke to me. I feel the sun rising over the San Pedro Mountains and setting behind Sandia Mountain. I can actually hear the coyotes singing in the pitch dark night. I see the sought-after rain in this drought heavy area trickling off the adobe roofs and onto the stony dirt ground. I can taste the roasted green chiles. So yes…THIS collection sings to me from start to finish. And I think that’s why I didn’t have any struggles to design and come up with my final piece.

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I quickly started drafting every single inch of my quilt pattern with numerous shapes and styles of flying geese covering the surface. Once again, I am so thankful that I always loved math and angles and geometry. See…you really do use math as an adult! (Maybe I should go back to my high school and thank Mrs. Hensley and Mrs. Fruits for making math classes fun. And yes, I just heard myself…I am a bona fide nerd.)

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And so I started building my quilt section by section. I had no previous plan for where color placement would go, and that made it fun for me to think it out as I went. The only true plan was to incorporate a handful of vintage doilies with the quilt design. Why? I’m not sure exactly. But something about the softness and feminine touch the doilies provide combined with the tribal designs and rough angles within a few of the fabric prints as well as the harder metallic accents just seemed like a match made in heaven to me. A huge thank you to my bestie, Nicole, for scrounging up these doilies for me from her amazing local thrift shop.

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I felt guilty cutting into them, but I just kept reminding myself I was giving them a new purpose in life and would be enjoyed daily by me.

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The tedious process of foundation paper piecing was underway. For a couple weeks straight, I think. But the quilt was coming together quickly and made my heart swell with each added section. img_3417

I tested my own sanity by incorporating sections of doilies as a few of the flying geese as well. If you look closely, you can see a few doilied geese in the above photo. A large downward pointing “goose” is flanked with a beautiful cream doily, and the lower left section has one “goose” using a bright white doily. For every doilied “goose,” I backed the doily with an Art Gallery Fabrics Solid Smooth Denim to blend with the color palette in play.

Once pieced, to my trusty Handi Quilter it went! I opted for a variety of quilting methods on this piece. I couched a few areas with different shades of metallic accented acrylic yarn. The ProStitcher was fun to integrate in a few areas with both a couple pre-programmed blocks as well as with some manipulated areas of “fishnets” casting out. A straight edge ruler helped me navigate around flying geese for outlining, and I also FMQ’d a lot of, what I call, Ornamental Iron on the top. I love implementing that FMQ style to provide movement.

I used Superior Threads #40 Metallic Thread in Antique Gold for all quilting, including the couched areas. This thread is amazing!! It really feels and stitches like a #40 but with all the metallic attributes you could desire. I have had zero breakage or fraying issues with any of the Metallics in this collection. You definitely need to add a spool or two to your thread library! Trust me.

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The backing of the quilt warranted a strip of scrappy Observer pieces running off center from top to bottom.

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Then it was time to bind. What I had originally planned and prepped to do was immediately out the window once I saw the quilted top. I just knew I had to do a flanged binding with, none other, gold metallic flange. Duh.

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This flanging process gave me a real workout of mental strength and physical endurance. Hah! I’m the one who chose to back the quilt with Art Gallery Fabrics‘ new Crosshatch Textured Denim in Rainy Night. It’s a bit beefier of a fabric content than traditional quilting cotton, so I had the extra bulk right there. Add in a flanged binding, which has me stitching in the ditch through double layered flange folds, and I was slowwwwwww to get this piece bound. Thankfully I made a lap quilt and nothing larger like I usually do!

Now for the fun part…pictures, pictures, pictures! Mister and I are on our first “real” vacation together since our belated honeymoon 5 years ago, and we came to, none other, than Sandia Park for our weeklong getaway. (Don’t worry…I have someone staying at our home, so don’t get any ideas. Hah!) We hiked along the crest of Sandia Mountain yesterday at nearly 11,000 for about 5 hours’ worth of foot fun. (Minus a 45min break at the lodge restaurant at the top for a quick lunch and delicious Alaskan Stout!) Mister was once again useful to me in lending his 6’1″ wingspan to hold my quilt in nearly 100 locations along the way. (I think he hates me now… hahaha)

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To give you a geographical idea of where I am…off to the right (west) is the city of Albuquerque, and off to the left side of the crest is Sandia Park and Santa Fe in the distance. And also worth noting, the Aspens were the most amazing they’ve been in 7 autumns! The area received enough rain this summer to give one heck of a color show in the forest and along the mountain!

And here it is…my quilt with Observer and AGF solid smooth denim…

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After the quilt was finished and ready to take its trip with me to New Mexico, I had just enough time to make up a couple coordinating cushions. These were so much fun to create!

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Thank you, all, so much for following along this adventure with me! I can’t begin to say how much this project spoke to my soul and what a joy it was to create from start to finish. Be sure to stick around for my next adventures (more AGF fun, some bright RJR, and a little Libs) coming soon. And make certain you check out the complete Observer Fabric Tour line up and amazing creations by visiting April Rhodes‘ site. The last stop on this tour is tomorrow, 5 October, and being brought to you by Jen Anderson of Little Wife Power House.

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*And if anyone out there is interested in purchasing my HQ Avante with ProStitcher for a great price, then send me an email for info. It’s time for me to get a bigger longarm!

XO,
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The Denim Studio by Art Gallery Fabrics

Things I love:

  • art
  • denim
  • gold
  • donuts
  • and a few other things like dogs, horses, diamonds, wine, green grass, pizza….

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But back to the denim…
When Chris, a.k.a. The Tattoed Quilter, asked me to hop on board with this week’s denim crew, I won’t lie…I totally did a happy dance! I’ve had ideas of a denim quilt in mind for some time now and just haven’t gotten around to it yet. But once I saw what Art Gallery Fabrics had come out with for the Denim Studio collection, well…I knew I had to take the opportunity to make my denim quilt here and now.

I waited with anticipation for the fabric to arrive. It arrived…the day before I left for my California Quilt Con adventure. Eek! Needless to say, I was a bit frantic wondering how on earth I’d ever accomplish this massive 5ftx7ft quilt I had planned with a week out of town coming up. I started cutting the nearly 300 diamonds with my Sizzix that evening but was quickly cut short by my 4 a.m. wake up ahead of me. Being the quilt-crazed individual that I am, I packed up all my fabric and took it with me…bound and determined to get this thing completely cut and pieced together ASAP. Bear in mind the timeframe here with Quilt Con and our blog tour week deadline. I was a ball of nerves to make this happen!

Side note:
The Solid Smooth Denims and Denim Prints have a lightweight, flowy feel to them. I equate them to shirting fabric with excellent drape and softness. They cut and sew wonderfully. And if I were at all a tailor, I would definitely make myself a shirt and dress out of them!
The Solid Textured Denims are slightly heavier, like what a luxurious pair of jeans would feel like. They also cut and sew great! I only suggest being mindful of the potential of these to fray easier if you’re not careful. But I had no issues whatsoever. I think I might get some more of the Bluebottle Field color to make sofa pillows for our living room.

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So I arrived to San Diego where Carrie (@gotchacoveredquilting) graciously let me use her Sizzix to finish cutting out those nearly 300 diamonds for this quilt. Back into the suitcase they went!

Post-Quilt Con I detoured to New Mexico to see my parents and have a quickie sewing retreat with my bestie, Nikki (@lillyellasworld). In addition to marathon sewing and devouring lemon donut cakes like Olympic champions, we also spread out all the denim diamonds to figure out best layout for this would-be quilt.

FYI… Denim + Donuts + Leggings + Beer + Sewing = WIN.

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So then I got back home and finished sewing together my strips to make my quilt top complete. Onto the Handi Quilter it went! With the sparkly accents of Superior Threads metallic Gold on top and metallic Antique Gold on the backing, I added my signature sketchbook quilting to the quilt. They’re 40wt metallics and definitely a dream to quilt with.

I couldn’t stop with the gold stitching, so I added gold piping as I bound the piece. For what it’s worth, I think the binding fabric I used (Indigo Shadow) is likely my favorite of all the Denim Studio colors. I definitely will be purchasing  yardage of this for future projects!

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Something about this quilt just screams BARN and HORSES to me. Off to the barn I went with my quilt in hand and a fraidy-cat thoroughbred awaiting me. Trust me when I say that I had high hopes for taking photos of this quilt out there. But seriously…my horse is a looney tune wuss who balks at the wind on a good day. Needless to say, horse modeling is not in his repertoire.

But his buddies, Fred and Henry, were totally interested in playing along with my antics!

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Doesn’t Fred pose like a professional?!

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Did you notice the lengthwise zipper on the quilt yet? I don’t know why exactly, but a denim quilt just needed a zipper on it. Reminiscent of a pair of jeans, I guess. Even though it doesn’t actually have a purpose, it still zips up and down and is a fun little fidgety doo-dad to mess with while I snuggle on the sofa.

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What’s under that zipper, you ask? Only a fun little pop of gold metallic denim that I snuck in with this super cool mix of Art Gallery denims! ***BLING*** I added a strip of circles (well, oblong bubbles because I can’t quilt perfect circles especially with a zipper tape restricting me) to add to the finished look on the backing.

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I also added a few random diamonds of cut up jeans knees from the Mr’s worn out collection. I knew hoarding would come in handy one day! And is it really “hoarding” if it’s fabric or fabric-related? Just sayin’…
I couldn’t let the shredded knee pieces go straight to the batting, so I added a second layer diamond to those pieces using the gold metallic denim. Total WIN in my book!

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The backing on the quilt is one of the Solid Textured Denims, Bluebattle Field. It feels like a crisp pair of jeans that I once coveted from Banana Republic way back when. It drapes beautifully; it quilts wonderfully; it feels amazing!

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And seriously…that metallic thread just radiates off the Textured Denim! Ooo la la!

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I couldn’t ignore my Number 1 helper during this photo sesh, Golozo. He’s the BIGGEST dog I’ve ever laid eyes on and is the sweetest giant to boot! (My leggings are denim and match the backing fabric color…this counts as a related blog pic!)

To wrap up this long-winded blog post about the making and finishing of my quilt, I have to say that the Denim Studio collection is, by far, one of the yummiest out there. The Solid Smooth Denims and Denim Prints are so soft and luxurious to work with, and the Solid Textured Denims have a wonderful feel and weight. Try at least one, if not more, of these lovelies in your next project! I promise you won’t be disappointed!

Have you seen this week’s line up of Denim Bloggers? Check them out!
And take a peek at #TheDenimStudioByAGF on Instagram!

Monday 14th – Christopher, The Tattooed Quilter

Tuesday 15th – Nicholas, Quilts from the Attic

Wednesday 16th – me

Thurday 17th – Jenn, Ginger Peach Studios

Friday 18th – Nicole, Modernhandcraft

 

 

Swing Your Partner ‘Round and ‘Round…

Here we go! I’m going to quickly show you how to construct a 7-inch finished Barn Dance Quilt Block. (At least that’s what I think it’s called. And if it’s not, then this entire post is labeled all wrong! hah!!) I, in no way, created or invented this block. This is simply my version of how to construct it in this size.

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First off…check out this GORGEOUS collection I’m using for these blocks! It’s coming out this spring from Lecien Fabrics and called Rococo & Sweet. It really is so sweet and lovely. All my inner girlie-girl is coming out with this collection — I’m drinking Earl Grey from my antique tea set; longing for spring weather; and ready to dig out my tulle skirt and pearls!

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Now for the Barn Dance Block…
For eaFullSizeRender-10ch block, you’ll want to cut 4 isosceles triangles and 1 square.
• Cut a square with 3-inch sides. Easy. That’s why there’s no photo of it.
• The triangles are all cut in the same direction (long straight edge to the right or to the left — I went with right sided for this demo). I suggest using a 60-degree ruler as I am here.
• Cut a strip of fabric meausuring 6 1/2-inches wide. Align the straight end edge with the center of the triangle ruler, and use your rotary to slice an isosceles triangle. Now cut 3 more triangles.

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• Now arrange your triangles around the square so the longest side of the triangles (the hypotenuses) are what form the block exterior edges.

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• Place the square right sides together (RST) with whichever triangle you choose to start, aligning the 90-degree angles with each other.
• Stitch a seam along length of square up to approximately 3/4-inch from center. (My finger is pointing to that loose section.)

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• Press open the seam. I suggest pressing the seam toward the triangle/away from the square.

***IGNORE my hideously disgusting ironing cover. It’s so scorched and gross and ready to be recovered. Maybe another post soon for a DIY ironing palette is in the stars!

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• Now take the second triangle and stitch it to the square. Align the right angles with each other with the fabric RST and sew along the entire length. Press seam away from square.

 

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• Time to attach the third triangle! Exact same as the previous.

 

 

 

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• For the final triangle, fold back the part of the first triangle that is not sewn down. Now stitch on the fourth triangle just like the others. And press the seam away from the square.

 

 

 

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• The block is almost completely assembled. Time for the final stitch line!
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• Fold the block so Triangle 1 and Triangle 4 are RST and the two loose edges are aligned with each other.

 

 

 

 

FullSizeRender-22• Sew the final seam along the length of the triangles.

 

• By pressing the seams away from the square as you built the block, your finished block will lay flat and smooth. And my momma always taught me that the backside of my needlework should look just as nice as the front — the same goes for a quilt block if you ask me!

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And finally…the finished Barn Dance Quilt Block!

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The fully constructed block will measure 7 1/2-inches square yielding a 7-inch block once finished into your project. I’m currently working on 80 blocks — half rotating this direction and the other half using the isosceles triangle with the right angle to the lower left so they appear to rotate in the other direction. (I hope that makes sense!)

There are quite a few ways in which the blocks can be arranged and laid out to give various finished looks. I can’t wait to show y’all mine!
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AvantGarde Tour Stop — Grab Your Sunglasses!

Hello, hello! And welcome to my newly emerging blog and website! Let’s see if I can do this post justice being my first “official” blog post and all. You might want to grab your coffee and a donut…I know I am!

Christmas came early for me in December when I opened my inbox one morning to see an email from “Nina.” Just Nina. At first, I was thinking it was likely spam like all the other random spammy emails that I get from a single name sender. So I opened it cautiously and was greeted by the following: “Hi, Sari! My upcoming Avantgarde fabrics collection makes a nice rainbow, so I thought of you!” Let me tell you…I’m pretty sure I lit up like the Christmas tree that was waiting to be set up in my living room!

And so goes my adventure with Katarina Roccella’s AvantGarde Fabrics Blog Tour!

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avg-bundleHave you had a chance to see this fabric collection yet? I can’t begin to describe how beautiful and mesmerizing the colors and prints are! (Nina, you outdid yourself on this collection as far as my opinion goes!) Just as the email stated, the rainbow palette is perfection and SO me!

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Then to find out my bestie, Nicole, was also joining the tour was just the glaze to my donut! We right then and there decided that this tour was the time to debut our diabolical duet, SARIELLA, by collaborating on an entire series using this gorgeous collection.

AVG-28902-Bauhaus-Dissection-500pxNicole and I both gravitated toward the Bauhaus Dissection print and knew we needed to draw inspiration from it for our series. Isn’t this an awesome low-volume print?! I think I need a good chunk of this and an entire bolt of Steps Above Prism! Whole cloth quilt with sketchbook quilting?….Yes, please!!

 

After a LOT of sketching and texting and phone calls and FaceTime and emailing back and forth (and patient husbands), Nicole and I decided that a single pattern just wouldn’t cut it with this beautiful collection. And anything with versatility is always better, right?

 

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With our Neo Quilt Series, we have aimed at giving you a collection of panels, or blocks, that will go together into a beautiful (and customizable) lap quilt, but could each also be used independently to create mini quilts and pillows. Think of it as a create-your-own-adventure pattern! And because we are mild overachievers and can’t contain all our ideas (and are usually hopped up on a sugary donut high), we also created an additional separate mini quilt pattern, too. (Check out #NeoSpherePattern.) If you’ve been following the Blog Tour so far, then you’ve likely seen Nicole’s gorgeous pillows and mini quilts she shared yesterday. Check them out if you haven’t! (www.lillyella.com) I’ve personally laid claim to one mini quilt, NeoSphere, because it’s simply my most favorite thing ever! In fact…I’ve already pointed out the spot on my wall where it will hang once I get my greedy little hands on it! And now let me reveal my part on the tour with our Neoteric Quilt! #NeoQuiltSeries

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All the fabrics used in the #NeotericPattern are from AvantGarde with the only additional fabric being the Art Gallery Fabrics coordinating solids in the thin inner border. Once I had the panels pieced and connected, I loaded it on to my HandiQuilter and went to town with a mix of sketchbook quilting and ruler work. I used Quilter’s Dream Dream Cotton batting and a mix of many Superior Threads Fantastico, Magnifico, and King Tut threads.

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The center block, NeoVol, is a large appliqué butterfly. #NeoVolPattern

It also creates a beautiful mini quilt that is quick to sew and allows you to showcase a fun print. It doesn’t stop there…it also makes a darling pillow and can be resized to create a variety of different designs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NeoVol is available as a FREE download now!

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The center panels on the quilt’s upper and lower sections are our NeoBurst Pattern. #NeoBurstPattern
Once joined with a panel that we kept referring to as “light rays,” these sections of the quilt came to life for me! Nicole recently shared a 30 second tutorial on How to Paper Piece with Directional Fabrics here.  (Is my girl crush obvious yet?!) If this aspect of paper piecing is frustrating for you, then check out her quickie tute.

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Remember, we wanted versatile functionality for our Neo Quilt Series patterns, so here is NeoBurst as a pillow thanks to Nicole! I just love how she used the Steps Above Prism fabric along the side too!

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The left and right center panels are our NeoDart Pattern. #NeoDartPattern
I just love how this panel has a bit of a tribal vibe to it! They’re like little arrowheads piercing through this menagerie of modern color and texture. I definitely think this 18″ x 20″ block will make a great mini quilt for any one of the numerous quilt swaps out there. And it’s very simple paper piecing, which makes it even better! IMG_4992

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Screen Shot 2016-01-29 at 9.11.50 PMOur NeoSphere Pattern is probably my most favorite mini quilt pattern at the moment! You must check out Nicole’s finished piece of the #NeoSpherePattern.

Here’s a fun idea we had for a lap quilt incorporating the NeoSphere Pattern into the panel configuration. Who wants to make this quilt?!

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Nicole and I had such a fun time coming up with all sorts of ideas for this blog tour and finally settling on the patterns for the Neo Quilt Series. I really hope you’ve enjoyed seeing all the photos and reading along with me. I also can’t wait to hear what you think of this pattern series! Be sure to leave a comment letting meFullSizeRender-3 know.

Patterns will be heading out to our testers shortly and will be available in March. Don’t forget your free NeoVol download for fun project right now!

Stay tuned to our personal Instagram feeds (@sariditty and @lillyellasworld), as well as our SARIELLA feed (@sariellastudios) for updates and giveaways, including the NeoVol mini Nicole made and a few bundles of Avantgarde fabric!

You can also check out all the other projects from the tour on @KatarinaRoccella or under the hashtag #avantgardefabricsblogtour.

LIVE IN COLOR!

xo Sari

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