Finish: Vulgarity and Lace (Accent Pillow)

Long story short: The background grey fabric I started using isn’t being carried by my local quilt shop anymore, so I got something else, and turned the half block I had already sewn into this pillow.

I think it’s cute. Also, I am happy that I designed my Fuck Off block in such a way that if someone wanted to just have a block reading “Fuck” instead of “Fuck Off,” it totally works. It’s like two patterns in one! One of these days I’ll start a pattern shop.

Anyway, this is what I accomplished today. (Well, I designed two more patterns this weekend too, but I didn’t test sew yet.)

Little pillow measures approximately 6.5 x 11.

I have the classiest, most elegant home furnishings around and I know you’re jealous.

Finish: An April Mini

Well…

I hoped to start an April mini today, and I powered through and finished an April mini today. My quilt stand won’t be naked next month – hooray!

The pattern is called “Spring Fling Mini 2015” and it’s by JmzB Quilts. You can get it for free at Craftsy by clicking here.

It didn’t take long to put together at all. I even got a little creative with the quilting! Instead of doing my standard straight lines, I added little raindrops. Admittedly, halfway through quilting, I started thinking they looked like little nooses and not rain, but whatever. It’s still cute.

It’s approximately 11.75 x 13.5. I’m pretty sure that will still fit on my quilt stand. The stand is in my office at work, so I’ll find out tomorrow.

That’s my first finish of 2017.

Finish: A Very Classy Mini

So um…

Why? Um…

Lucas, Empire Records

I didn’t rush right off and make it or anything. I surfed the urge. But…

Which is how this happened…

I HAVE NO REGRETS.

Ok, I have one regret, which is not taking my time with the border… Look at that horribly aligned corner! AHH!!! Haha.

Emailed a picture of it to a friend with the note, “I made a thing.” Response: “Can I have it?”

Considering putting this block pattern for sale on Etsy. That just feels right.

Finish: October Mini

I was hoping to have this finished on Saturday, but life had other plans for me. They weren’t fun plans, and I would like it very much if life could back off for a while.

Anyway, my little quilt stand has been waving a flag since July because I haven’t been keeping up with making minis for the months I’m missing. But Halloween is my fav and I knew I had the perfect orphan block!

The block was the first one I made for the Row Robin Swap, but I trimmed it to the wrong size. *face palm* Past Me’s error is Present Me’s luck. All it took was a few thin borders to have a cute mini.

The cat pattern is by Quilt Art Designs. This particular cat is #3 in her series of silhouettes.

I participated in the swaps for Nov – Jan, so I’m good til next year. Then I’ll try *again* to fill in the months I’m missing.

I would really like to get back to focusing on block making this month. We’ll see how it goes.

Finish: Well Traveled (An H.D. T-Shirt Quilt)

Less than a week after sending off The Harley Davidson T-Shirt Quilt, before I had even fully recovered from the stress / anxiety of making it, I accepted a second commission from one of my client’s friends.

All things considered, this one went just fine. I was an anxious wreck during the process, but not about the quilt. I was stressed about everything else in life. Making this quilt was the only thing going on that I felt good about.

Don’t try to figure that out. It makes little sense. Yay anxiety disorder!

Look! I took a halfway decent picture!

I really love how this quilt turned out. I like the different sized blocks and that nothing really lines up. It’s interesting to look at. Other things I love about it: My birthday is on it, the year I graduated high school is on it, there are TWO skulls on it, and it has a pig on a motorcycle on it (or a hog on a HOG). When will I ever make another quilt that has all of that? Probably never.

My customer had some very cool shirts from all over the world: The USA, England, The Virgin Islands, Singapore! The title of the quilt is actually from one of his shirts. It felt really appropriate.

It’s longer than I was originally planning. I was shooting for approx 60 x 70 and it turned out closer to 60 x 90. It’s really hard to plan a shirt quilt until you have the shirts in your hands. 58.5 x 87 is what worked for these shirts. So it’s an extra long throw.

I managed to quilt it at home. The LQS sold the remaining longarm that they was renting time on, so it was quilt it at home, or pay (more than I wanted from my profits) and wait to have them quilt it on their computerized longarm.

Shout-out to Ann Peterson. I took advantage of the Labor Day class sale on Craftsy, and purchased Ann Peterson’s course on quilting large projects on a small machine. I haven’t finished the entire course yet, but the tips I got in the first few lessons were great.

It’s possible her tips are all “obvious” but as someone who mostly taught herself to quilt, sometimes I need obvious pointed out to me. Anyway, I felt like I didn’t fight with this quilt much, even though it’s the largest thing I’ve ever quilted at home.

It’s probably why I’m in finishing mode lately. I actually feel like I could tackle something queen-sized! (Hubris? Probably.)

Anyway, I really love this quilt. I kind of wanted to keep it. I like it that much. I really need to make myself a shirt quilt. I keep saying I’m going to stop wearing jeans/tees every day. Maybe I should force the change by cutting up all my t-shirts.

*shudder*

Or maybe not.

Finish: Civil War 25-Patch

These blocks came from a Quilting Around the World swap. I completed the top back in January and then got distracted with other projects.

I found the label I pre-made for both this and another swap top last week and realized I wrote “Completed 2016” on them both. I guess I was feeling motivated when I wrote those out. Thanks for the pressure, Past Me.

Well one label at least won’t be a lie!

I’m not a huge fan of Civil War fabrics. I think it’s the muted colors. I wanted to expand my horizons a little bit though, which is why I joined this swap. I rather like the completed quilt. It looks nice on the daybed in The Lair.

It finished at approximately 56 x 68. The quilting is all straight-line quilting done with my walking foot. I ditched all the sashing and then quilted on the diagonal across the blocks.

I think I need to explore taking nicer finish photos. Maybe find a park or something nearby. Although, a cemetery is more my aesthetic. I live in New England… I bet I could have easily found some Civil War era gravestones to drape this quilt across.

Oh well… Maybe the next quilt.

Now to work on that other one! I think I have everything I need to sandwich and quilt right now. Label and binding are already prepared… Another finish in one weekend (and a slightly smaller UFO pile)? LET’S DO THIS.

Finish: Harley Davidson T-Shirt Quilt

WARNING: This blog post contains swearing. If you are sensitive to or offended by that, please stop reading and enjoy this photo of Madison. Everyone else, please continue reading.

She was chilling like that for quite some time, so I guess it was comfy.

A friend of my lovely cousin Katie was looking to have a bunch of her Harley Davidson shirts turned into a quilt. Katie, being the awesome cousin that she is, recommended me. I said, “Sure! I can totally do that!”

I have been toying with the idea of trying to sell quilts instead of just gifting them. Seemed like a great idea to just jump right in and take my first commission from someone I don’t know personally!

I was so excited!

Well goodness, this could have been a much better photo…

Translation: I was a complete anxious wreck the entire time. (Actually, I think I might have anxiety about it for the rest of my life because my brain is awesome like that.)

Recurring thoughts while I made this quilt: Oh god, what if I fuck it up? She’s a stranger! She won’t just love it because she’s family and she loves me. She doesn’t even know me! What if I fuck up all her shirts? If it was just fabric, I could buy more but I can’t just run down to the quilt shop and get more Harley Davidson shirts! One of them is from Hawaii! I can’t do this for a living. I can’t even do this for extra money every now and then. I can’t make quilts for people. I can’t do this. I can’t. I can’t do this. WHY THE FUCK DID I FUCKING SAY I WOULD DO THIS? WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH ME?

I survived for the most part. I’m pretty sure a small piece of me died, but I think it was just a bit of my appendix, and we don’t really need those, right?

So it’s all good.

I think.

I like the back better than the front. Is that weird?

Anyway, since this was my first “real” quilt job, I tracked my time and materials carefully. I discovered that I am AMAZING at estimating material costs. I was within $5 of my estimate.

I also discovered that I am TERRIBLE at estimating (and valuing) time. I forget how long things like shopping, washing, ironing, cutting, etc. can take. I only estimated sewing time. Rookie mistake.

I also didn’t think to ask about the shirts themselves. I assumed I’d just be cutting out a bunch of shirt fronts. But there were designs on the backs (and sleeves!), some of which noted where the shirt was from. I couldn’t leave the locations off the quilt!

I didn’t think to ask if there were rhinestones on the shirts I would have to work around…

So yea… I didn’t charge near enough. My local quilt shop revealed that they charge twice as much and cap it at half as many shirts as I agreed to. So I basically charged 25% of what I should have charged. *face palm*

Oh well. It was the price we agreed upon. Money is nice, but knowledge is valuable too. Next time – you know, when I forget how much I panicked the whole process and think a “next time” is a good idea – I will have a much better idea of an appropriate price.

In the meantime, I think it turned out ok.

I’m pretty sure it did.

She says she loves it and will refer me to her friends, so I guess that means it’s all good.

Someday I won’t have anxiety about this stuff anymore, right? RIGHT?

Oh and my ban on baby quilts has been lifted. I remembered that I like to make baby quilts because they are small and easier to work with on my home machine. My coworker was happy because she still wants me to make a quilt for her impending first great-grandchild.