Monday, June 25, 2012

My day on the Hop



Hi, I'm Beth.  Welcome to my day on the Blog Hop!  I can't remember exactly when I started quilting - it was in the past two years - but I didn't get "addicted" to it until last summer and now I'm at my sewing machine most every day.  

Favorite Quilting Tip:  Enjoy the process AND what I hear myself telling my daughters when they are sewing - take it slow and steady.  Oh, and try new things - you never know what you are going to like until you try it!

Favorite Blogging Tip:  Blog because it is fun and don't be afraid!  I started my blog in late February and I really didn't realize what an awesome experience it would be.  I have made so many great blogging friends and am so happy to be part of such a fun and supportive community.  And just like in quilting, don't be afraid to try new things with your blog.  When I thought about organizing a blog hop for new bloggers, I was hesitant to put it out there - thinking no one would be interested - especially since I had only been blogging for about two months.  But as you can tell, the response was amazing!  Same with the advice series - my email to the guest bloggers bordered on being apologetic for even asking but as you can see, I got a very positive response to that as well.  So, my tip is just go for it!  

Book I am currently reading:  The Invisible Bridge  (I love giving and receiving good book suggestions so I try to keep my reading list up to date on goodreads.)  

Favorite children's book:  Too many to list but the first to come to mind:  The Phantom Tollbooth, From the Mixed-Up Files of Basil E. Frankweiler, Harry Potter, and anything by Mo Willems and Oliver Jeffers.

Favorite music to listen to while quilting:  I usually just put on Pandora - the station I have on right now is Josh Radin (but like some other bloggers I follow, I've also been known to listen to Glee.)  And I listen to audiobooks.  

Favorite TV show to watch while hand stitching: Like so many other blog hoppers, I love the Big Bang Theory.  I also like Modern Family, Parenthood, Downton Abbey - oh, and The Walking Dead (seriously - LOVE that show!)

One more thing about me?  I'm married to a supportive man who is like an enabler to my fabric buying habits - as he often can be heard saying "Yes, honey, you should take advantage of that sale and order another 10 yards of fabric - you've only received three fabric packages in the mail so far this week!" (Um - yes, he proofread this post for me and wanted to know why I didn't mention him so I'm adding this in last minute but really, he doesn't even say that sarcastically!)  Oh, and we have three daughters - ages 9, 7, and 9 months.  And, actually, they encourage my fabric habit as well.  Hm . . .  

Okay, onto the tutorial.







Supplies:

16 5in square charms (including a few novelty prints fussy cut to 5")
20"x 20" piece of white fabric (middle fabric)
24" x 24" piece of batting (I used warm and natural)
26" x 26" piece of fabric for backing
fabric for binding (120" x 2.5")
thread in pink, blue, and neutral
stamps, fabric markers, or fabric paint



Start by laying out your charm squares and middle fabric on the batting to determine your preferred layout.  Trim your middle fabric so that it just slightly overlaps the charm squares on all sides.  I knew that I wanted to use the stamps to add some words near the typewriter so I added a plain aqua charm under the typewriters (not shown here) and I added some light fabric to make the little clock measure 5".


Piece together the following into strips:  5 charms for the top row, 5 charms for the bottom row, and 3 charms for each of the side columns.  



Take your top strip and place it on the batting right sides together, stitch using a 1/4in seam, flip, and press.  Do the same for the bottom strip.


Place your middle fabric on top of the batting and strips (baste if preferred.)  I angled mine slightly.  Note - now that I am looking at all the photos I took, I notice that the bottom fabrics really show through.  I don't think it looks so glaring offline but if you would rather not have this happen, I would suggest either using  a darker fabric for the middle (maybe a linen color), using two pieces of fabric for the middle - either both white or a darker piece underneath, or covering the batting entirely in patchwork and placing the white piece on top of that.  Or, you could just cut the top and bottom patchwork squares to allow for them to go around the middle fabric.


Using the pink thread, stitch a vertical line on the white fabric.  Switch to the blue fabric and stitch horizontal lines.  Since I was going for a scrappy look, I just stitched random lines but if you want more precision, you can mark them first.  Also, since I am still using my old sewing machine that does not have an auto-thread cutter, when I get to the end of a line, I lift my pressure foot and my needle and rotate the fabric around to sew the next line (not sure if this is a common or even a proper technique but it works for me.)



Lay your backing fabric wrong side up and center the batting/quilt top on it right side up - thus, making a quilt sandwich.  Take each of your side strips and place them so they overlap the middle fabric and the previously placed strips (make sure no batting is showing around the middle piece.)


 Using a zig zag and neutral thread, stitch all the seams and the edges of the middle piece.



Add in the hanging corners (Nicole from Mama Loves Quilts did a great tutorial on this for her blog hop day) and bind the quilt (I attached the binding to the back of the quilt first, pressed it to the front and then used a zig zag to attach by machine.)  And seeing this photo, I realized I missed a bit with the  zig zag on the edge under the clock - fortunately, with this type of style and quilting, I was able to go back and stitch over that line - my kind of fix - no seam ripper!


If you are making this for a gift, you can stop here and gift it with a set of fabric markers and stamps.  However, for this tutorial, I went ahead and wrote in some school rules/sayings.  I just used a fabric marker to color in stamps but you can also use stencils, fabric paint, or even handwriting with the fabric markers. Of course, if you are feeling very ambitious, I think the rules would look great embroidered!  I think another great alternative would be to use fabric for the words "school" and "rules" - either applique or pieced.  



And that's that.  Thanks for stopping by.  Be sure to check out what Svetlana from Sotak Handmade made today for her blog hop day.  And be sure to visit both Julie from Jolie Maxtin and Lori from Adventures in Fabric on Thursday.  And if you haven't already, stop by last Thursday's bloggers:      Suzanne from SuzClaas and Mina from Kindaquilty.  Actually, I highly recommend catching up on all the great posts and tutorials from the past 6 weeks.  Here is the list.

And, also click here to read my post yesterday that included an interview for the Advice for New Bloggers Series with Angela from Cut to Pieces and a fabric giveaway.

Linking up to Fresh Sewing Day at Lily's Quilts (pretty much all my favorite recent projects are in the mosaic), Quilt Story, and Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Week 6 Blog Hop News and Giveaway


Plum and JuneWeekly calendar:  be sure to visit these blogs this week to meet the bloggers and learn more about them AND see the projects they made especially for the blog hop!

June 26
    Svetlana from Sotak Handmade
    Beth from Plum and June (my turn!)
June 28
    Julie from Jolie Maxtin
    Lori from Adventures in Fabric

Click here to find links to the awesome tutorials from the last five weeks and to see some fantastic events currently being hosted by blog hoppers.  


Plum and JuneThis week's guest blogger is Angela from the wonderful Cut to Pieces.  I first found Angela's blog when I spotted this beautiful mini.  And I've enjoyed following her blog ever since and seeing all her lovely projects and her awesome tutorials.  To help us out, Angela answered some questions I sent her based on the information you all told me you were interested in hearing more about.


1.  What do you think is most important for new quilting bloggers to know?  Were you given some advice when you started blogging that you could pass on?

Well I think the first thing is to just start blogging because you WANT to.  Don't do it because "everyone" seems to be doing it or you want to become popular or other insincere reasons.  Blogging is about sharing your own journey through whatever projects you are tackling, whether that is quilting, sewing, painting, or life in general.  Not everyone will want to read your blog and not everyone needs to write a blog.  I didn't write a blog for at least a year after I was seriously involved in the online quilting community.  And when I started I did it because I realized I had a lot more to say about WHY I was making the sewing and quilting decisions I was.  And I realized that I needed to document the things that I was making because I kept giving them away and you so easily forget what you've made or what it took to make it.

There wasn't anyone that I knew well enough to ask about blogging when I started so I didn't really get any advice.  I just started writing and invited the people that I was in bees and swaps with on flickr to read along.  And eventually others followed.

Cut To Pieces
2.  Is there anything you now know that you wish you would have known when you started your blog?  Anything you wish you had done differently?  Anything you now know NOT to do on a blog (not necessarily something you have done but something you now know never to do.) 

Well one of the things that I have learned is that having a blog is A LOT of work.  If you write a post even three times a week that means you need to generate enough content to warrant that.  You need to be taking photographs of your work and then editing them and uploading them and then finally writing a blog post.  I don't think most people realize the time commitment that is involved with that.  So perhaps decide how much time you have to give to something like this.  Because when you are blogging, you are not sewing.  It's really hard to keep that all in balance.

Another thing that I learned is that you need to BE YOURSELF.  People come to a blog because they like the pretty pictures or ideas, but they also come because they enjoy reading how the particular blogger writes.  So speak with your own voice.

I try not to have a lot of regrets in the blogging world.  One thing I've seen and learned is to "save the drama for your mama".  People do NOT want to hear your grievances against someone else unless there is really no other resort or you would be protecting people.  But in general, be kind.  Don't be fake.  But seriously...if you don't have something nice to say then don't say it.  Figure out how to air your grievances in a way that does not attack.

                   image from Cut to Pieces
3.  What would your advice be for growing readership?  Any advice on using social media to do so?

If you really want to grow your readership then you need to be involved...involved in swaps and bees and be a presence somewhere.  

Also, I personally don't like doing this, but I know it works...throwing around pictures of popular fabric draws people in.  We're suckers for a pretty picture of fabric we like.  

Giveaways work as well...but be prepared for people who complain...because they're always out there.  I started with giveaways of things that I had made and went from there.  It was quite a while before I had a "sponsored" giveaway.  Giving away a precious item that you has made shows your readers that you are serious about respecting their time and appreciate that they read your blog.  I also gave away my own fabric that I purchased.   I'm not sure how many people are doing sponsored giveaways these days...it may be easier to find someone than when I first started.

4.  Do you blog surf?  If so, can you pinpoint a few aspects of a new blog that would make you want to become a follower?  And is there anything that would make you want to never visit that blog again? 

Occasionally...but I typically go outside of the quilting world when I do.  For me to follow a quilting blog, the writer has to have a style that appeals to me...that doesn't necessarily mean that they appeal to everyone.  More often, for the blogs that I don't follow, I will read an occasional post when I see an item that I like on flickr and want to know more about it.  HOWEVER this can only happen if the person has put a link under their picture on flickr directing me toward their blog.  You can't make it hard for people to find you!

As mentioned before, drama tuns me off...gripey whiney drama in particular.  I want to see "real" people but I don't want to surround myself in negativity.  So it's not that a person needs to be spurting out sunshine and rainbows all the time (that can be equally annoying), but I don't follow regular "complainers".  

                                             image from Cut to Pieces
5.  What types of posts are most popular on your blog and what about those posts is it that make them such?

Boy if you get the answer to this question then let me know!  I've always been surprised by what topic will strike a chord with my readers and what doesn't get a lot of response.  I do think that it is key to engage your readers in order to get responses.  So I always reply to everyone that I can who comments on my blog...some people don't give you email access, so there isn't much you can do unless you want to comment publicly on your own blog in response.

Still, to be fair, I would say that my most popular posts have been about my mini quilts and the stories that go with them.  That and really great giveaways.;)  But the minis are often made for someone who's identity I have not revealed and the story is not given until the end...so there is some anticipation I think to learn about the piece.

6.  As part of the advice series, we will be putting together a checklist for new quilting bloggers including items to help us look at our blogs objectively in terms of the look of our blogs, the photos, the content, the writing, etc. - any tips for what you think we should include on the checklist?

A clean, crisp look is most appealing to me...but that is very subjective.  There are lots of different blog styles out there.  Just make sure that your blog is easy to navigate.  

You may have noticed (even with this) that I tend to be a little long winded...some bloggers will give you five sentences and call it a day.  And it works.  That rarely works for me.  It's just not how I communicate online.  So again, the writing style is pretty subjective too.  I'm not a ton of help here!  Sorry!

7.  Thinking ahead:  (a) how and when should new bloggers solicit sponsors and (2) how and when should new bloggers seek out ways to be published.

a)Well gathering sponsors for a blog is a very personal decision and frankly a fair amount of pressure.  I don't find that it pays me enough for the pressure and have considered chucking it all...but I still end up blogging, so I guess we're all good.

I did ask a couple of people to sponsor my blog and was asked by another to be a sponsor all around the same time.  Some people turned me down.  It WILL happen.  One thing I learned is that a lot of companies budget their advertising for the year...so you can ask them now, but expect them to not be free to do that until the new year.  In fact, you might even suggest that yourself.  You may get someone who is willing to branch out later but doesn't have the time to think about that right now.  

                  image from Cut to Pieces
Also, you may find that asking someone to do a sponsored giveaway is a good alternative for both of you.  They might decide that they get a lot of traffic through your blog and you may get new readers through having a sponsored giveaway.  Plus it is a one time deal...you can find if you are a good fit for each other.

b) If you want to get published then contact publishers!  They are always looking for new work and ideas...but beware...it's not uncommon in this current industry to not be paid for certain publications.  But it gets you out there and gives you some credibility.  Most magazines will pay you for your work but it's a wait to see if you've been accepted.  Books are a little rarer to be published in because unless you are doing your own, then it is a compilation.  And that means that it takes many hands to make one book.  Which means it takes more time.  It's typically a year and a half to two years for book publications to come out from the initial invitation...that's a long time to wait if you are doing this to tell people about it.  Because you can never talk about publications that early. ;)

Good luck everyone!  And thank you for having me!
May we all accomplish even one dream of ours.

Angela

Thanks Angela for all the great insights and advice!

Giveaway:
  
This week's giveaway is sponsored by the very cool Contemporary Cloth.  They have a wonderful selection of fresh, modern fabric and they are currently having an awesome sale.  The giveaway includes two Jennifer Paganelli charm packs (Dance with Me and St. Croix) plus one yard of Kona in a color of your choosing.


To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment on this post.  Leave any comment you want to enter but since it is fun to have a topic, if  you'd like you can tell us what is it about the blogs you follow that caused you to click the follow button?  One comment per person for an entry (replies to other comments don't count so reply all you want!)  The giveaway will be open until Saturday, June 30, 2012 at 8pm EDT and a winner will be chosen at random.  And, PLEASE, leave an email address unless you are sure that you are not a no-reply blogger.  The winner will be announced in the Week 7 Blog Hop News on Monday, July 2nd. 


The winner of last week's giveaway from Fabricworm is #44 - bhafer.  Congrats!  



Anyone participating in or following along with the blog hop can add a link.  Please either post the button or a text link somewhere in your post or on your blog and please visit (at the very least) the person who links up right before you and leave a comment!  For fun (actually, an experiment), when the link tool asks for your name - write down your favorite color instead.  





Monday, June 18, 2012

Modified Mist Mini, a Tote, and a WIP


quilted tote-001


If you are looking for the blog hop, the giveaway, the advice series, the figure it out series, or the Monday link up, click here.  Otherwise, here are some quilty things I've been working on lately. (As suggested in yesterday's comments, I uploaded the pictures for this post directly from Flickr.)


quilted tote



quilted tote-003


I made another quilted tote bag - these are fun to make and have so many uses - diaper bag, pool bag, library bag, school bag, crochet project bag . . .  I took lots of photos when I made this one so I'll be writing up a tutorial soon.  

My other project this week was this mini quilt:


love in a mist mini quilt

After finishing the HST blocks I wrote about last week, I decided to look around to find some other fun blocks.  This is a modified version of a block called Love in the Mist.  I just changed it up a bit by adding the middle section.  The block finished at about 24 inches square (I just used a picture to make it with my own measurements) so I decided to quilt, bind, and call it a doll quilt.   

love in a mist block-002

And my WIP?  I finished my first Swoon block (though if I'm going to make a whole quilt, I'm going to use this one for a small project and start again without the pink background!)

swoon

And I'm still working on my big WIP - finding a sewing machine!

Question:  In the comments of one of the past blog hop news, one commenter asked what the etiquette was for how many link parties you can/should link one post to?  I have the same question - what do you all think???  As for me, since I usually only write one or two "linkable" posts each week, I tend to link the same post until I write a new one.  


And on the subject of link ups, to see where I like to sometimes link my posts, click here.  Some of these, I link to every week but most, I only link up intermittently.



Sunday, June 17, 2012

Week 5: Blog Hop News, Advice, and a Giveaway

Plum and June

Weekly calendar: (be sure to visit these blogs this week to meet these fun bloggers, learn more about them, and see their great tutorials prepared especially for the blog hop!)


Tuesday, June 19
    Jennifer from Sewlandia
    Nicole from Mama Love Quilts
Thursday, June 21
    Suzanne from SuzClaas
    Mina from Kindaquilty

Click here to find links to the awesome tutorials from the last four weeks and to see some fantastic events currently being hosted by blog hoppers.

Plum and June

1.   Nicole from bold goods put together an excellent tutorial explaining how to use powerpoint for your blog including a header, a button, and even business cards.  Check it out here.

2.  Alyssa at Pile O' Fabric is writing a series called Sewing and Quilting Events 101 - so far, she has posted about quilting bees and swaps.

3.  Last week, I encouraged everyone to join Twitter.  (Follow me here.)  Some of you have been tweeting for years, some joined last week, some were confused by Twitter, and some of you said you were scared of it!  If you haven't already, consider trying it out for your blog.

4.  This week is Let's Figure out Flickr week.  I'm new to Flickr so I am going to open it up to you - let us know in the comments how you use Flickr or what questions you have about using it.  To get us started:
  • You can add me as a contact - find my Flickr here.
  • I created a few Flickr groups for you to join.  
    • Plum and June Inspired Projects - this group is open to anyone to post any projects you make inspired by my projects.
    • Projects Inspired by The Let's Get Acquainted! Tutorials - this group is also open to anyone to post projects you've made inspired by any of the projects from the blog hop.
    • Let's Get Acquainted! Blog Hop - this group is for bloggers participating in the blog hop and those actively following along to post photos highlighting your projects.  I also started a introduce yourself discussion so we can, you know, get acquainted.  When you have a chance, please do so and post a few photos of your work.

Plum and June

This week's advice post is by Megan from Canoe Ridge Creations.  Megan has an absolutely beautiful blog filled with wonderful inspiration and fantastic tutorials.  She also hosts a weekly link up on Mondays for modern sewing creations (I'm a regular.)  Some of you may also know Canoe Ridge Creations as she held the Festival of Half Square Triangles earlier this year (which was um, very, um,  exciting for me as my HST doll quilt was in the, um, Top 10 as was a gorgeous quilt by blog hopper Jess from The Elven Garden.)  

     



This week's giveaway is a custom bundle from the wonderful Fabricworm - this is a fat quarter bundle of Rally Champ.  Fabricworm has a fantastic selection including japanese imports and organic fabrics.  And until June 21st, Fabricworm has a great deal - 15% off any custom bundle - either yardage or fat quarters.  


To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment on this post.  Leave any comment you want to enter but  want something to write about?  -  what about Flickr - do you use it?  how?  suggestions?  advice?  One comment per person for an entry (replies to other comments don't count so reply all you want!)  The giveaway will be open until Friday, June 22th at 8pm EDT and a winner will be chosen at random.  And, PLEASE, leave an email address unless you are sure that you are not a no-reply blogger.  The winner will be announced in the Week 6 Blog Hop News on Monday, June 25th.  


The winner of last week's giveaway from The Intrepid Thread is Ginny!  


       
Plum and June


Anyone participating in or following along with the blog hop can add a link.  Please either post the button or a text link somewhere in your post or on your blog and please visit (at the very least) the person who links up right before you and leave a comment!



Wednesday, June 13, 2012

WIP Wednesday


WIPs:
HST Block of the Month at In Color Order.
Flying Geese Quilt - tried a tutorial today recommended by my blog hop friend Susan so I'm 4 geese in.
Swoon - first block cut out and ready to be pieced.
Working on my "top secret" tutorial for my blog hop day.
And does researching new sewing machines count as a WIP?

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.


Sunday, June 10, 2012

Week 4: Advice, Calendar, a Link Up, and a Giveaway

Seriously, week 4???

Plum and June

Today's advice for new bloggers is from Lynne of Lily's Quilts.  If Lily's Quilts is not already on your inspiration blogroll, I highly recommend it - she makes beautiful quilts and has several great tutorials.  And Lynne's blog also holds a special place in my blogging heart and I think many of yours as well for her monthly Small Blog Meet.  It is the first of every month and is a place for blogs with under 50 readers to link up and meet other small bloggers.  This is how I met many of the new bloggers in the hop including many of my best blogging friends - you know who you are!  Click here to read her advice for us.



Week 4 Calendar:
June 12
    Kelly from Jeliquilts 
    Yzo from Chez Roo
June 14
    Debbie from A Quilter's Table
    Sarah from Silly Banana Sewing

Awesome Events hosted by Blog Hoppers - Check them out!
    Rebecca from Sew Festive Handmade - Christmas in July
    Catherine from Knotted Cotton - Fabric Trading
    Lorelei from Mermaid Sews - Quilting for Kids in Need

Click here to find links to the awesome tutorials from the last three weeks and more information on joining the Blog Hop.

Other ways to keep up and participate in the Blog Hop:
   1.  Follow me on Twitter
   2.  Join and post on the Let's Get Acquainted! Flickr Group
   3.  Follow and post on my Let's Get Acquainted! Pinterest Boards here and here.


Plum and June

What is this - a new button???  Well, since we are learning all these great tips from the bloggers in the advice series, here is my motivation to put those tips and ideas into action.  Each week I'll pick one or two items to highlight here.  If you have any ideas you'd like to see, let me know.  Or if you'd like to host a Let's Figure it out Together post on your blog, that would be great too.  Topics:  setting up social media for our blogs, blog design (adding buttons, pages, headers, post dividers, backgrounds, and more), and photography among others that come up along the way.

For this week:
1.  Let's all be 100% positive that we are NOT a No-Reply Blogger.  Here are some tutorials here and here.  Interestingly, it was Lynne from Lily's Quilts who let me know I was a no-reply blogger when I first linked up to the small blog meet.

2.  Join Twitter.  Why?

  • great way to promote your blog posts
  • find out about special fabric sales and promotions
  • keep up with your favorite bloggers
  • communicate with your followers when you don't want to publish a whole post
  • retweets - share great posts written by you or others with your followers who can share with their followers who can share with their followers  . . .

As with everything blog hop related, this is open to all bloggers with stops on the hop and any of our readers AND no rules - no pressure to participate - totally up to you how little or how much you want to get involved with this.

If you would like to participate, confirm that you are a blogger that can receive replies to your comments and set up a Twitter account.  You can follow me on Twitter here (I'll be sure to follow you back) and then you can use this week's link up to let us know you are on twitter - just put Twitter:  your blog or twitter name (in addition to linking up your post.)  Next week:  Flickr.




And how about a great giveaway.  Julie from The Intrepid Thread is very generously hosting a giveaway for a fat quarter bundle of Flying Free by Adrianne Looman for Anthology - isn't it beautiful?  This line is among many of the new fabrics she carries including several at the top of my wish list.

To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment on this post.  Leave any comment you want to enter but if you'd like a topic, how about your suggestions for topics for the Let's Figure It out Together posts.  One comment per person for an entry (replies to other comments don't count so reply all you want!)  The giveaway will be open until Friday, June 15th at 8pm EDT and a winner will be chosen at random.  And, PLEASE, leave an email unless you are sure that you are not a no-reply blogger.  The winner will be announced in the Week 5 Blog Hop News on Monday, June 18th.  

Last week's winner of the premade blog design by Jennie from Clover and Violet is LeslieJune 4, 2012 2:31 PM who said:  "Wonderful words of advice, I especially love the line about bribing ::giggle::"



Anyone participating in or following along with the blog hop can add a link.  Please either post the button or a text link somewhere in your post or on your blog and please visit (at the very least) the person who links up right before you and leave a comment!



Saturday, June 9, 2012

Quilted Totes

So, my old sewing machine isn't quite as bad as I remember - I really miss having an auto thread cutter and some other features but I'm still able to sew!

This week was all about bags and pillows.


Some patchwork stripes (I used the quilt-as-you-go method.)


While I was quilting these, I didn't cut the thread at the end of each quilting line - I just lifted the pressure foot and the needle and turned the panel around.  This method is probably old news but I just discovered it today and was really happy to cut down on the number of long threads.

Here is a bag with patchwork squares on one side:




and The Ghastlies on the other (can you guess who this one is for?)



And finally, inspired by all the recent dresden posts:


I'm not sure why but it has an 80s vibe to me (definitely not intentional!)


I also finished the binding for the patchwork pillow - now I just need to get the right size pillow insert (this was "borrowed" from a pillow off my couch.)



Oh, and I guess if I was going to use a stuffed animal in a blog hop post, I should have chosen a bunny and not a bear so what about this guy?!?




Thursday, June 7, 2012

Advice for New Bloggers

Photobucket


Just wanted to let you all know that Rachel at Stitched in Color just published an awesome post with her awesome advice for new bloggers for the blog hop series.  Here is the link.


And speaking of awesome, have you seen the four blog hop posts this week?  Awesome!

June 5       Cinzia from Deux Petites Souris 
                Kristy from Quiet Play
June 7       Taryn from From Pixels to Patchwork
                Em from Sewing by Moonlight

Click here to find links to the awesome tutorials from the last two weeks and more information on joining the Blog Hop.


Apparently, this post is brought to you by the word "awesome!"











Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Two Little WIPs



What I don't love:  My new sewing machine is not working again.

What I do love:  I'm able to return it!  And I am sewing machine shopping this weekend!

Fortunately, I still have my old machine (that my daughters currently use) so I've been able to do a little sewing this week.  But if anyone has a recommendation for a great hand stitching project, let me know!



This patchwork heart pillow was super fun to make (inspiration from herehere (via pinterest), and here.  I used 2 inch squares and HSTs so I was able to use my cutting mat grid to lay everything out.  I quilted it with a bright pink Aurifil thread and now just need to add the binding.   

And I made this soon to be pillow or mini wall hanging.  Even though I have been wanting to try paper piecing and this is a perfect paper piecing project, I did not paper piece - I just um, is there a name for regular piecing?    



When it came to the quilting, I couldn't decide - bright pink?  dark gray?  bright pink?  dark gray?  So, I thought "Hey, why not a combo?!?"  And I think I am going to add a little hand stitching to the letters.

That is it for my projects.  If you are looking for information on the blog hop, advice for new bloggers series, or this week's giveaway, click here and here.

And speaking of pillows, my blogging friend and fellow blog hopper Danny from MommyforReals asked if I would spread the word that she is asking for help to make pillow covers for hurting girls attending the Teen Reach Adventure Camp.  She needs 40 pillows by July 6th.  If you can help out with this good cause or want more information, click over to Danny's blog.

Also, there will be a Thursday edition of the Advice for New Bloggers series with Rachel from Stitched in Color.  It will be on her blog tomorrow - I'll post a link when it is up.

And back on my blog next Monday will be a guest post from Lynne of Lily's Quilts and a fantastic fabric giveaway from The Intrepid Thread!

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.







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