Monday, September 30, 2013

Giveaway Winners

I'm just checking in to announce the winners from my recent giveaways...but first I had to share this photo of the lovely bundle of Honeysweet that arrived on my doorstep this morning...

Congrats to WoolenSails who is the winner of the Soho Bandana fabric giveaway...and congratulations also to ScottyLover who won the Bear Creek Quilting Company Giveaway. Please send me an email, ladies!

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Bear Creek Quilting Company Giveaway

While I'm busy with some market sewing this weekend, I'd love to have you enter a giveaway from Bear Creek Quilting Company!

It's easy to navigate the Bear Creek website since product categories are clearly listed on the left hand side. Shari sells books, patterns, magazines, AccuQuilt! dies and notions along with, of course, fabric! (Recent Moda pre-cuts Honeysweet and Giggles bundles are listed in the "New Items" section).

Shari from Bear Creek is offering a $50 gift certificate to one of my readers. Simply sign up for the newsletter (the sign up box is on the top right corner of the home page) and then come back here to leave a comment that you've signed up. 

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Friday, September 27, 2013

Sewing and Seasons

This is how my machine has looked for the past 8 days...covered up and turned off! But not for long--I plan on a marathon sewing weekend!

This book, Quilters, Their Quilts, Their Studios, Their Stories: With Access to More than 80 Online Quilt Patterns (A WWC Press Book)  arrived in the mail the other day. This is the perfect book for me as one of my favorite things to do is to  look at the studios of other quilters. I find so much inspiration in seeing how people organize and arrange their creative spaces. This book is definitely one I'll sit down with again and again in order to read the stories and make notes. 

Part of my marathon sewing involves this yummy stack of Daydream...a new Moda collection by Kate Spain...

And some of my other weekend sewing will be with the latest Fig Tree & Company collection...can't wait to get started!

Along with the change of season from summer to fall here in the northern hemisphere...the season of my little world has slowly changed, too. My youngest son left Wednesday to serve a mission for our Church. He'll be serving for two years in the Richmond, Virginia  area.

The house is a little quieter today...things seemed to change over night. I'm grateful that changing from season to season is something that hasn't been difficult for me in the past--I hope to embrace this new season. And if it's a little difficult over the next few days...well...I have lots of sewing for solace!

Thanks so much for stopping by...Have a wonderful weekend!

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Monday, September 23, 2013

Change of Season--Happy Autumn!

I thought today might be a good day to review my summer goals and progress (or lack thereof). After all, yesterday was the first official day of Autumn. (Note to self: stop complaining about the heat publicly and privately for at least the next 7 months--should be easy since the weather is beautiful now)!

Back in early July I posted ten goals I thought I might reasonably accomplish over the summer, and although I haven't finished them all I'm pretty pleased with how things turned out. Goal number one was to start on the Minick & Simpson quilt, Coastal Lily. I did make a start and have fabrics chosen and some of the cutting started (see photo above). I'm making a 30's version using the recent Moda collection, 30's Playtime, some Happy Go Lucky green dots, and some extra 30's fabrics from my stash. I actually have this ready to start sewing the flying geese! Goal number 2 didn't even get a Steam Punk pattern still sits on the shelf.

But goal number 3 is finished! I got my Hopscotch quilt quilted (thanks Abby) and have it bound and washed. I've been using it like crazy...I heart this quilt!
Goal number 4 was to really clean my sewing room. Well, I did it, but it's a total disaster now due to a project I finished up just in time for a deadline last week. You'll have to trust me on that and organizing the sewing room is just one of those never-ending things, I guess. But I'll clean it again soon, promise!


Goal number 5 was to make more hexies...and to try a paper-pieced diamond star. Check...I made lots of hexies while on a short trip to a mountain cabin, and I also made one diamond star block.

Goal number 6 was to make a list of all of my finished quilts...another no...but something I'm keeping in mind for fall.

Goal number 7 was to finally cut into my Moda American Jane Potluck bundle. I guess you'll have to trust me on this one. I did...but it's for a project I can't share just yet!

And goal number 8 was to make more string blocks. I actually tried to make a block a day for a short time (clearly, that didn't go so well), but I did make a few, and I finally organized my string scraps so it will be easy to get to work on these soon!

Goal number 9 was to finish my Christmas Scrappy Trip. Well, I do have 19 blocks which is a pretty good start...thanks to my Bee friends!

And goal number 10 was to find a quilt ladder...another "not yet...but hopefully soon." So even though I didn't complete all of my goals--I completed several and made good progress on most. There were only three goals that I didn't get to at all...and so I'm going to count the summer as a quilting success. After all, I did a few things that weren't even on the list including....

finishing up my Tula Pink quilt which has been in a box for a couple of years...years! Just need to finish up hand stitching the binding on this one!

And I started a new quilt, Camille's On a Whim, on a whim (thank you Instagram friends)! I'm super happy with this project as it gave me a terrific use for the Anna Maria Horner fabrics I've been collecting for a few years!

And now it's fall...and I'll have new goals and a renewed sense of motivation to work on them. I guess it's time for a new list! How did you do on your summer goals?

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

SoHo Bandana Blog Tour and Giveaway

Good morning...happy Friday, and welcome to the SoHo Bandana Blog Tour and Giveaway stop here at A Quilting Life. I was recently contacted by the folks at Indygo Junction and asked if I'd like to present a terrific giveaway opportunity for my readers...of course I thought you might be interested!

I received some of the lovely SoHo Bandana fabrics to play with--there are so many fun possibilities for this collection. Inspired by the details and colors of vintage bandanas, this collection has lots of possibilities! You can read about designer Amy Barickman's inspiration for this collection on her personal blog here

The introduction to this fabric collection on the Indygo Junction blog reads as follows: "SoHo Bandana brings the classic design and details of vintage bandanas into the here and now with contemporary colors. It is a versatile line that can be used for garments, home dec project, accessories, and of course, quilting."

I'm happy to let you know that one of my readers will receive a 1 yard fabric pack of the entire collection along with 1 coordinating pattern pack! Simply leave a comment on this blog post mentioning your favorite SoHo Bandana project from the collage below!

One more thing, in celebration of the blog tour and National Sewing Month, Indygo Junction is offering a 20% discount on your next pattern order; use the code SBT20.
Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

A Little This, That, & The Other...

It's been a busy time for me...with the days going by so fast! It seems as if September  just arrived, and yet it's already half over! I have some kind of random things to share today...hence the title of this post "A Little This, That, & the Other." here goes!  First, I picked up a little Acacia for the binding on my Tula quilt...hoping I can get that bound in the next couple of days.

And I finally got a second bobbin holder to fill up with cream and white bobbins. I just need to pick up a few more bobbins and get them ready to go--I love having plenty of bobbins.

Speaking of Acacia...I ordered a fat eighth bundle which arrived the other day. I like ordering these smaller bundles and then deciding which prints I might want more of. I'm not really a purple person, but these purples are amazing. The pink is really more of a coral pink...and I love it. The aqua in this collection is beautiful, too!

I also had a chance to make the Fat Quarter Shop Designer Mystery Block of the Month which arrived recently. This fast and easy block was designed by Bonnie & Camille.

Fall is fast approaching, and I'm still trying to make some progress on my summer quilting goals I set earlier this summer. Not sure I'll be able to finish them all, but I have made some very good progress on most of them. My goal of one string block a day is just not happening, but I have made quite a few this summer and will share them soon. As soon as I get two made I sew them together and then put them together in groups of four to make larger blocks.

I've also been writing quite a bit over at Craftsy. Here are links to a couple of my recent posts:

Did you know Quilt Bliss is almost sold out...I believe there are just a few spots left if you're planning to stay at the event...if you are interested in going, you might want to sign up soon!

Finally, congratulations to podunkpretties who won the lime sherbet bundle and to Christine S who won the orange sherbet bundle from the Fort Worth Fabric Studio giveaway. Please email me your mailing addresses, ladies!

Thanks so much for stopping by!
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Monday, September 16, 2013

The Jelly Roll Jam

Today I'm happy to talk a little bit about the Jelly Roll Jam quilt! This summer I was able to make not just one but two adorable quilts from a jelly roll using this fast and easy free pattern from The Fat Quarter Shop.  You can download the free PDF pattern here!

I used a Giggles Jelly Roll by Me & My Sister for Moda for my quilts. You can see one of the quilts I made on the top right in the photo above.

They really were very fast, fun, and easy to make! I was pretty happy to have two baby quilts ready to go in just a short period of time!

Here are close ups of both quilts...

And, Kimberly also has a You Tube Tutorial for making the quilt that you can watch here...or click below.

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Saturday, September 14, 2013

Giveaway from Fort Worth Fabric Studio

Happy Saturday! I'm happy to be offering a fun giveaway this weekend from Jodie at Fort Worth Fabric Studio.  Jodie puts together awesome fabric bundles, and she has donated a gorgeous lime sherbet bundle with greens and greys along with an orange sherbet bundle of beautiful oranges and greys!

The Fort Worth Fabric website has been newly re-designed with brighter colors and easier navigation...and...if you're interested in purchasing these bundles (or some of the other terrific bundles available) you can find them here.

I'll keep the giveaway open through Monday night. I'll pick two winners, one for each bundle, so let me know in your comment which bundle you'd prefer. To enter, just visit Fort Worth Fabric Studio then come back and let me know your favorite item/items in the shop! That's comment per person!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and good luck!

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Friday, September 13, 2013

My First Quilt

I thought it would be fun to share the post I did last week over at Gen X Quilters...just in case you missed it over there...

Hello! I'm excited to be here today to talk about my first quilt, my love of quilting, and where my quilting is at today! I recently found a photo of my first quilt that I had forgotten I had. It's such a significant photo, too, because my grandmother and my oldest son are in the picture. I really began quilting because I wanted to make things for my family, and my grandmother who was taught to quilt by her grandmothers started me on my journey.
My first quilt was a Double Irish Chain using Eleanor Burns' Quilt in a Day book. I had actually asked my grandmother to make this quilt for my son, and she said, "No. But I'll teach you to make it yourself." The rest, as they say, is history. My grandmother came over to my house and helped me cut and sew the first few blocks...then she left me on my own to finish. Of course I was pretty hooked on this pattern and can't even tell you how many double Irish chain quilts I made before branching out to new designs.

Now, twenty years later, I don't know what I would do without this past time. I love fabrics and quilting, and I'm still making quilts for the people I love! I consider myself pretty eclectic when it comes to what I make as you'll see from a few photos. I recently finished my "Hopscotch" quilt using some fresh modern fabrics designed by V & Co. for Moda. This is one of my favorites (I'm working on the binding right now).

But I also love traditional block designs and fabric and am always drawn to the comforting colors and palettes of the Fig Tree fabrics. I completed my Farmer's Wife quilt about a year ago and used all Fig Tree scraps from my stash for the blocks. It just came back from the quilter a couple of weeks ago!

When I first started quilting I was influenced by the things my grandmother was making and by the projects she heard about through her local quilt guild. Over the years I began to find quilt books of my own, and then when I discovered quilting blogs on the internet it was like a whole new world opened up to me. I live in a pretty rural area, and when my children were younger it was just incredibly hard to get away to attend quilting events out of town, but with the new world of on-line quilting resources I began to be inspired by so many different styles.

My scrappy trip along quilt finished up last winter was inspired by all of the scrappy trip quilts I saw on Instagram.

My Marcelle Medallion was also inspired by the Instagram craze...

One of my most recent finishes is my Bella solids quilt using 9" finished signature block patterns from the  Moda Friendship quilt along. After all of these years, I'm gravitating toward using a lot of solids...just as I did in my very first quilt!
I hope you've enjoyed hearing about my very first quilt and a little bit of what I'm up to today. You can follow along my continuing quilting journey at A Quilting Life and follow me on Instagram at @sherrimcconnell.
Thanks so much for having me as a guest blogger!
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