Tuesday, September 28, 2010

sponsored review & giveaway: The Edge Rulers by Sullivans

Sponsored review & giveaway:
The Edge Rulers by Sullivans
disclosure: this review is in exchange for sample rulers

Welcome to day 3 of the blog hop!
There is a lot going on in this post!
A Story
A Recipie
& A Giveaway!


Here is the full list for the blog hop

Monday 9/27

Tuesday 9/28

Wednesday 9/29
Julie @ Jaybird Quilts {here!}

Thursday 9/30

Friday 10/1
Carrie @ La Vie en Rosie
Polly & Laurie @ Minick & Simpson Blog
Cheryl @ Naptime Quilter

Sat Oct 2
Michele @ Quilting Gallery
Pat Sloan @ Pat Sloan's Blog

Monday, September 27, 2010

how long does it take to make a quilt?

The number one question I get asked when people learn I'm a quilter, is "how long does it take to make a quilt?" Of course there isn't one answer to this question. I often guess and throw out a number, but I realized that I didn't really know how long it took.

Many factors will influence how long it takes to make a quilt. Size, materials, difficultly level, as well as the experience of the quilt maker are just a few factors.

Prior to this project I had little information on how long I spend on a project. One time I pieced a quilt for another designer as a “stunt quilting” job and I had to keep track of how much time I spent on the project. I logged all my time spent over the course of three days. In total I spend 8 hrs and 10 minutes cutting and piecing the entire quilt top and then I sent it off to the quilter. It was the first time I had tracked all of the time spent on one specific project. {from my interview here}

I told myself that one day I'd track the time spent on a quilt from start to finish. The circumstances around this project provided me with the opportunity to do so.

Below is a timeline for you with timestamped photos, tweets, and notes I jotted along the way. I cut, pieced, quilted & bound this one quilt in 17.25 hours during a 23.5 hour time period. I know it seems crazy, but below I explain the how and the why.
fabric is Robert Kaufman
pattern - City Green from City Quilts
designed by Cherri House
quilted by me
started on 9/23/2010
finished on 9/24/2010
quilt measures - 50" x 55"


I started cutting the fabric for this quilt at 3PM on 9/23/10. Initially I had not planned on tracking the time for this quilt or posting a timeline. As a result the first photo I took wasn't until 3:57 PM from my phone. I posted the photo to twitter.

Just keep sewing... sewing... sewing... http://twitpic.com/2r9fy8

The first photo from my camera was at 5:02 PM. I had just finished sewing all the strips together.

By 5:35 PM all the strip sets were all pressed.

Then came the process of sub-cutting the strips.

I started the design wall with a 10 x 10 layout.

It quickly grew and by 6:45 PM it was 15 x 15. I decided it was a perfect time to take a dinner break and went out to the diner.

By 8:30 PM I was back home with a fresh set of eyes and working on the layout again. The design wall is an asset during this step. Eventually at 8:58 PM I decided on a layout of 18 x 20.

The next hour + was spent sewing the units into rows.

Still sewing... rows done... adding sashing... i'm thinking i'll pull an all nighter and have the quilt done by morning.

Despite my twitter announcement an hour prior, by 2:30 I had hit a wall. Part of me wanted to keep going but another part of me was afraid a sewing injury would occur. The rational part of me won and I snapped the last photo at 2:26 with about half of the top together.

In addition I also snapped a photo of myself in the mirror.  I look wide awake right?...

I decided to go to bed and set my alarm for 5 AM. I hit the snooze button a few times and got up shortly after. By 5:30 AM I was back to work.

Most of the early morning was spent sewing & pressing. When a seam would flip like in the photo above, I'd take a few stitches out and fix it. Also I initially was pressing towards the long sashing strips because of the bulk of the seams. In the end I decided to press away from the sashing strips and while it was hard with the bulk, it looked much better from the front.

The top was in four pieces by 7:17 AM and was starting to look like a quilt.

At 8:01 AM most of the top was together.

I did a little happy dance when I added the borders and finished the quilt top.

The next step was to cut the batting to size and piece the backing. I piece my label into my backing for two reasons. First I like the look of a pieced backing. Second is because the quilting will go through the label and make it almost impossible to be removed.

Here is a photo of the finished quilt showing the quilting through the label.

I posted another tweet since a few people were keeping track of my progress.

@mascanlon slept from 230 till 530 and then back to work. Top done... layered... and starting quilting now

The basting step came together pretty quickly.

I like to use bent safety pins when basting.  They are available at most local quilt shops.

This quilt begged me to do straight line quilting.  I used white thread through the middle of each sashing and also used white thread in my bobbin.

As you can see from this finished photo the white bobbin thread creates a grid on the back of the quilt.

I could see the finish line by this point and got the quilting done in just over an hour.

It also seemed like a good time to again update my twitter followers on my progress.

Quilting finished... all that is left is binding & i'll be done!http://twitpic.com/2rhjri

Shortly after I tweeted the above photo Cherri House sent this tweet to me & gave me a good laugh.

cherryhouse @jaybirdquilts what??? I need more, I need to see the whole thing!!!!!!!!!!

After the quilting was complete I trimmed off the excess batting and backing.

Then I cut strips for binding and attached them to the quilt.

I attached a few binding clips to bring the binding over to the back for hand stitching. I snapped a photo at 10:45AM and then was forced to take a break and take care of some "work." A quick trip to the post office & some errands followed.

About an hour later I was back home and back to work.

 I stitched away for almost 23 minutes before I had to take another "work" break.

By 1:05PM I was again working on the binding.

Over an hour later I finished my last stitch and snapped this photo before I even cut my thread!

Items not included in the 17.25 hours.
-Initial Planning

After all was said and done I washed the quilt.  I love the look and feel of washed quilts.


I'm sure many people are wondering why I put this quilt together so fast and skipped out on so much sleep to do so. Some people have guessed that it was because I had a post on the Swatch & Stitch on Friday the 24th. While I did decide it was going to be the content of my S&S post, that was not the number one reason for making the quilt.

This quilt was made for a very special woman. A woman who is unfortunately losing her battle with leukemia. All week I wanted to make her a quilt but couldn't come up with a plan. On Thursday morning I had a sudden light bulb moment and it all came to me. I worked hard to finish my work early for the day so that I could get started on the quilt. A quick trip to the fabric store to add 6 yards of purple fabric and I had everything I needed. From the moment I started the quilt I thought of her all along the way. Each time I got tired or wanted to take a break I thought of her. The few hours of sleep I got rejuvenated me and gave me all the momentum I needed to finish it.

There was a few moments where I thought I was too late. The quilt didn't make it to her on Friday and I kept it with me all day. Saturday Tricia came over to spend the day sewing with me and trying to distract me from thinking about everything. We had a change of plans shortly after she arrived, and as any good friend would she drove me to the hospital to deliver the quilt.

Times like this put life into perspective.  I've made a pledge to myself to try and spend more time quilting for fun instead of just for work.  Life is too short and I want to spend it doing and making things for the people I love.

Update - 9/28/10 4:30PM
Thank you to all of you for the comments & support on this post. My friend's mother passed away peacefully last night.

How long does it take to make a quilt?
17 hours, 15 minutes & a whole lot of love.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

sunday stash..wks 38 & 39

i didn't report last week.. because there wasn't much to report.
"life" has been pretty busy... and i went 7 days without sitting down at my sewing machine!  shocking i know... trust me it wasn't by choice... and i missed it.  nevertheless i'm back to sewing!


10 yards of castle peeps by lizzy house

so that i can make this quilt... night watch!

2 yards of red letter day by lizzy house
2 yards of love dots by amy butler

6 yards of purple kona solid


8.29 for "city purple"
details of this quilt over @ the swatch & stitch
tomorrow i'll be posting the story of how and why i made this quilt in under 24 hours

4 yards out of geo grand!
i'm so excited to show you this quilt... borders & quilting and it'll be done!
for now you get a sneak peek...

really precise piecing pays off

2+ for a few projects i still can't show
{ no fun! }

so this week
20 in
14.9 out

YTD totals
purchased: -603.19 yds
busted: 403.75 yds
net: -199.44 yds

check out how everyone else is doing...

Saturday, September 25, 2010

a quilt for a cause

katie jean of see katie sew made a quilt for a cause

Katie's husband has been fighting lymphoma for the past three years. She is raising money for the Light the Night Walk for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.  Please head over to her blog to read more and help support the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Friday, September 24, 2010

A Little Birdie Told Me... that color can change everything!

fabric is Robert Kaufman
pattern - City Green from City Quilts
designed by Cherri House
quilted by me
started on 9/23/2010
finished on 9/24/2010
quilt measures - 50" x 55"
{ made in under 24 hours }

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

the cookie monster

is what i called my dad when i was a kid...
and well sometimes i still call him that.

he likes to snack!
 so when i found this fabric in a kit a few years ago... 
i knew it would make the perfect "man" quilt for my dad!

here is the entire quilt
chips...cookies... pretzels...popcorn & nuts!

fabric is Timeless Treasures
pattern - came with the kit
designed by ??
quilted by me
started on 10/08/2007
finished on 2/8/2008
quilt measures - 68" x 74"

it was one of the first quilts that i quilted myself on my mega quilter
and it's far from perfect.. but he loves it.

today happens to be "the cookie monster".. aka dad's birthday

not only is he an amazing dad... he's actually my best friend.

it doesn't hurt that once he took me to Krispy Kreme and we shared a dozen doughnuts for dinner!
i also have serious sweet tooth!

happy birthday dad!!
i love you lots!
and hope you have a fun day with your grandkids

p.s. today is also rachel's birthday

and there is a blog hop next week!
and lastly you have till tonight at 10pm to enter this week's giveaway from green fairy quilts

Monday, September 20, 2010

sponsored giveaway: featuring Green Fairy Quilts

sponsored giveaway:
featuring green fairy quilts!
disclosure: this is a sponsored giveaway

giveaway now closed!
thank you to everyone who entered!

the winner is.... kimland!

kimland said...

I am already a follower of Green Fairy Quilts!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

holiday ribbons quilt

here it is... my holiday ribbons quilt!

It is featured in the November/December 2010 issue of McCall’s Quilting
{ subscribers will be getting it in the mail soon! }
and i'll have some copies in the shop as soon as they arrive!

isn't the quilting amazing???
i wish i could say i did it... but all the quilting was done by 

i put together the quilt top... one of the largest i've ever made...
and snapped this photo before sending it off to natalia

i couldn't be happier with what she did from there!
red swirls in the red squares
blue feathers in the blue squares
green diamonds in the green squares
and white pebbles in the entire background!
that's a lot of thread changes... but it looks so good!!

the detail is just amazing

she also did feathers in the border...
i didn't want to ship this quilt off.. but i had no choice!

i added the final touch of binding
using one of the candy cane prints 


fabric is Fruitcake by Basic Grey for Moda
pattern - holiday ribbons
designed by me
started on 4/18/2010
finished on 6/2/2010
quilt measures - 83 7/8˝ x 103 5/8˝

I also wrote an article that can be downloaded from McCalls's Website!
"Keep It Simple for Holiday Gifts"

i hope you like my new pattern as much as i do!
and i hope it comes home soon.. i miss it!

I've recieved a few e-mails asking about the specific fabrics uses. Here are the fabrics I used in the quilt.

Fruitcake by Basic Grey for Moda

Green Print - 30225-15 Spearmint
Red Prints - 30225-18 Maraschino Cherry
Cream Background - 30227-18 Sugar Cookies
Teal Prints - 30150-84 Avalanche
                     - 30150-84 Avalanche
Brown Inner Border - 30224-19 Hot Cocoa
Outer Border - 30228-15 Avalanche
Binding - 30223-15 Avalanche