Friday, February 26, 2016

Color Play Friday: NYC

Happy #ColorPlayFriday!

Big announcement time! Lorinda and I are starting a monthly #colorplayfriday newsletter! The last Friday of each month we will send out a quick newsletter with announcements for our blogs, a review of the month's palettes and bundles, and a list of all of the participants from the month. (We may, on rare occasion, send an extra newsletter for super big announcements.)

If you would like to sign-up for the newsletter you can use the form on the right side of this page or email Lorinda and I at colorplayfriday @gmail .com.  Also, if you would like to participate email us for details, and we will make sure you get all set up!

Lorinda chose this week's photo -it is another from my tour bus ride in NYC.  I tried to pick out fabrics that really reflected the city life shown in this photo.  I knew I wanted to use Shannon Brinkley's Dryad as my main fabric (yellow fabric). Its all blustery and bright, so I really feel like it fit in perfectly, plus it has all the same colors as the photo! How lucky is that!

(P.S. If you haven't checked out Shannon's patterns go do that now! I've already mentioned them in my latest Periscope broadcasts, but I will be blogging about them more in the future.)

Most of the fabrics came from Quilting Mayhem this week. The map fabric I found at MetroQuiltCompany on Etsy.

I won't bore you with the particular reasons for each fabric, but they all seemed to fit the mood and movement of the city. If I were using this bundle in a quilt project, I think I would definitely pull in more shades of yellows and another blue or two as well.

As always, I'm excited to see what everyone else came up with, and you can see for yourself on their websites:

Next week's photo is one of Lorinda's, and I absolutely love it! Its going to be a fun one.  If you would like to join in on our game remember to check out the #colorplayfriday page for details and to contact us.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Sister Sampler: Button Block

***Yep another past-dated blog post... you aren't crazy, I'm just catching up. Whomp Whomp***

Lorinda, Mindy and I are swap sisters for the Genx Sister Sampler Bonfire Quilt. We are working with the same palette, different fabrics, and each month we make 3 of the blocks (1 for ourselves and 2 to share).

I have to tell you, I feel like I'm getting the hang of this curved piecing! I think the "trick" is to have pieces considerably bigger than your finished size and a very scant seam. Sewing like that and then squaring up is working out for me.

What isn't working out for me is the seam matching between sections. blah!

I really liked how the block turned out. It does look like a button. :)

I don't like how my seams don't match around the outside. I'm debating whether i'm going to take them apart and fix them, or if I'm going to just scrap and remake them completely.

For now, I'm counting them as done, and leaving them. I have until tuesday night to fix them up either way I choose, because Lorinda, Mindy and I will swap while at the Snoho Modern Quilt Guild meeting.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Tula Tuesday: Week 7

***You aren't going crazy. This post, though it appears to have been here, wasn't actually posted on Tuesday! I had to post date it because I'm late...again.***

I know everyone is "busy", but I really feel like I've been busier than usual the last couple of weeks because I'm trying to catch up from a sick week. Besides that, Girl Scout Cookie Season has started!!!!

Either way, I'm almost there... almost to the finish line for the week and my most urgent to-do list items! Yay!

I finished these blocks for the #qm100blockchallenge and the blocks for our Sister Sampler quilt on Wednesday. I really love how they turned out. I love them so much that I almost want to go back and redo all the others to match the style of these!

My new goal is to get the next blocks done this weekend so I'm not waiting until the last minute. I also think I'm going to focus on keeping my blocks simple and "blendy" so they are more like the examples in the book.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Color Play Friday: Skywalker

Happy #colorplayfriday everyone!

For those of you who are new...each week Lorinda at Laurel, Poppy, and Pine and I take turns choosing each other's photos. We make a palette and bundle based on said photo, and then we share them. We've openned this up to anyone who would like to join in, so if you are interested check out the #colorplayfriday page for the rules and our tutorials.

I'm having such a good week. I'm still running behind on some things and goals, but I'm still accomplishing a lot. I've also had bits of good news sprinkled throughout my week, which surely never hurts a thing!

I picked Lorinda's photo of a horse named "Skywalker" because I wanted to challenge myself with the browns and greens. Obviously, that didn't work out so much because I focused on the blue. I really don't know why I have such a hard time with the brown and green. If anyone has any suggestions on how to develop myself in that range please let me know... until then I guess I'll stick with my plums, corals, and navys.

All the fabrics this week can be found at Hawthorne Threads.

I feel like this bundle is pretty boring and not really my style... except for the Wee Wander. I do like all of the fabrics and can imagine using them in different projects. I just have a really hard time envisioning them in something spectacular all together. *whomp whomp*

I really can't wait to see what the other ladies come up with. I feel like the runt of the bunch when it comes to these colors, but their palettes and bundles always give me those "oh, duh...why didn't you see that before" moments. That's part of the awesomeness of #colorplayfriday -the continual inspiration it provides from seeing things in other people's perspectives. And speaking of! We have a full house this week!

Of the 5 women who have either previously joined Lorinda and I or expressed joining us, all of them signed-up to participate this week!!!
There are seven of us!
How exciting is that!

If you are interested in joining us next week please contact Lorinda and/or me for an introduction and details.  Next week we are using a photo I took while touring NYC in 2013.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Tula Tuesday: Week 6

I made it through another sluggish weekend! I even managed to sew a little on Saturday, and then again today!

Only Nathan is sick now, so the Little One and I are getting back and around to things which is great for both of us. She was starting to feel stir crazy, and I was starting to get anxious with everything I needed and want to get done!

Since I didn't make blocks last week, and I want to stay up with schedule, this week I had to make 4 blocks. This led me into the second section of Tula's book and it feels like progress!

Next week I will make 4 more blocks and be ready to start March blocks. :)

Other than this I have nothing exciting to show. Just a reminder to check out the Woodland Postcard Swap. Sign-ups are open until February 29th!

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Postcard Tutorial

Sending fabric postcards through the United States Postal Service is extremely easy, and receiving them is a delight!

To make a postcard you will need:

4.5" x 6.5" front panel
4.5" x 6.5" back panel
4" x 6" stiff fusible interfacing (or double up on layers of lighter interfacing)

The front panel can be anything you would like! You can embroider, piece, applique, paint, or whatever else your heart may desire. Just make sure that everything is tacked down securely.

Create a sandwich with your panels right-sides out and the interfacing centered between the two. Pin into place as needed. (Pictured is the centered interfacing, not the sandwich.)

Using a zig-zag stitch, stitch around the outside closing all sides. I shorten the length and width of my zig-zag so that it is tight, then I stitch around two or three times, as needed.

Trim all your threads and double check that you caught both layers in your stitching... if you missed a space just run back over it really quick.

On the back, it is important that you write the word "postcard" across the top left corner or down the center (between the message and addresses). Then addresses and your message as you would on a normal card. Be sure to use something permanent. (I seriously need to get a fine tip sharpie!)

At the Post Office:

Let them know you would like to ship the postcard as normal postcard, and that you would like it to be "hand-canceled".

At my post office, the woman hadn't done this before so we kind of figured it out together. She placed the stamp as normal on the front of the card, then carefully used the rubber stamp to hand-cancel half over the stamp and half over the fabric. Then just to be sure she used a couple pieces of scotch tape over the stamp to help keep it in place.

I paid a whooping $0.35 and was on my way!

Then Lorinda received her happy mail just a few days later!!! All intact and super charming with the additional postal stamping on it.


You could, of course finish the postcard a dozen different ways. You could use a stitch and flip right-sides out method or you could press your raw edges towards the inside and top-stitch. I chose to show this method because I think it is the simplest, plus I love the extra pop of color from the stitching. However, you choose to do it just make sure everything is secure.

On the last postcard I made I used striped fabric as the back panel to make it easy to keep straight writing lines. To help divide my message space from the address space I appliqued an additional rectangle onto the back panel before assembling the postcard.

Woodland Postcard Swap

I recently learned that you can send fabric postcards through the mail! I was skeptical at first, but I sent a fabric postcard I made to my friend Lorinda, and she received it perfectly fine! And all for the whopping cost of a $0.35 postcard stamp!!

It was such great news to learn and to test that I thought we should do it on a larger scale!

Let's do a cross-country swap!

Here is how it will work:

  1. I will be accepting sign-ups for this swap until 9:00pm PST on February 29th, 2016.
  2. Everyone will be assigned a swap partner that you will exchange addresses with mail postcards to directly.
  3. All postcards should be mailed by March 12th so everyone should realistically receive their postcard before the end of March.
  4. During this swap all postcards should have a "woodland" theme. Woodland could be leaves, creatures, a quote, or basically whatever you make it. Be creative. You applique, embroider or piece your design. I suggest not attaching buttons, charms or anything bulky/dangly unless you aren't worried about it being lost and just want to test it out. *smiles*
  5. This seems like a silly rule to make, but make sure you create a postcard you would be excited to receive. Of course, you won't be receiving your own postcard, but the other person deserves to be just as excited.
(Neither postcard in this post are woodland themed, so just ignore that minor detail.)

How to Sign-up:

  1. Email me (inanotterlife
  2. In your email please include "Woodland Postcard Swap" in the subject line.
  3. In the body of the message include your mailing address. This will only be shared with one other person in the group...whoever is mailing to you. No one is allowed to trade addresses without the owners permission.
  4. If you would like to participate in a link-up blog post/page please include your blog address. Also feel free to share any other social media use, also verify if you would like to keep them private or if you don't mind them being shared on a link-up page. (For instance, I would share my business page, but not my personal Facebook.)
  5. All email addresses will be kept private and only shared with one other person in the group -your swap partner so the two of you can exchanged mailing address.

How to make a fabric postcard:
You can find a basic tutorial for postcard construction here. I didn't want to go into great detail about design because that is completely up to you!

How to Mail Your Postcard:

  1. After you have completed your postcard be sure to write the word "postcard" clearly on the top or down the center of the back (in the area that separates the message from the addresses).
  2. Take your card to the post office counter and ask for it to be hand-cancelled.
  3. They will place a stamp on the top right corner on the front and need to stamp it with a rubber stamp for the hand cancelling... if need be reassure the postman/woman that its quite alright to put ink on the fabric because this is what it was intended for. :) Then ask if they can put a piece or two of scotch tape across the stamp to help secure it.
I hope you decide to play along and that we have lots of participants. I also hope that this grows and we are able to do this every couple months or so.  Seriously, who doesn't like receiving pretty mail!

Friday, February 12, 2016

Color Play Friday: Tulip Festival

Good Morning Everyone!

It's that time of week again!

If you are joining Color Play Friday with Lorinda and I for the first time this week hop over to my #coloplayfriday page to see the rules to participate, tutorials by Lorinda and I, and my past palettes.

This week's photo was taken by me while at the Tulip Festival in Skagit County in Washington.

Its a pretty big deal! First our family trip started at the fair ground garage sales -so much old junk creative gold! (I definitely have great potential to be a hoarder hidden within me!)

We ate Gyros and mini doughnuts. It was so windy it was difficult to have our picnic, but we managed. Then we drove a little further north to visit the Tulip fields.

I had no idea there were so many types of tulips. The garden we visited had this area where you could walk through to see samplings of each type -sort of like a living catalog of bulbs. We were fascinated. We also had fun thinking of how many tulips we could cover the yard of our future home with, and how happy that would surely make us and anyone who visited.

It was easy for me to pick out the palette I wanted to use this week -again so similar to my normal choices except I'm starting to add green like a pro and without hesitation!

My issue was picking out the fabric! There were so many choices, but I had a hard time find ones that really captured the feeling I was going for, and after hours of searching I finally gave up. At a certain point I totally believe you shouldn't try to force the creativity. It either works or it doesn't. I don't feel like this really works, but its close enough for now.

All the fabrics came from SpoonFlower again this week. I really have a lot of fun bookmarking my favorite fabrics as I scroll by them.

In addition to Lorinda at Laurel, Poppy and Pine and myself...
This week we also have the following makers joining us:

If you are interested in joining us next week, our photo is of this big guy, "SkyWalker" taken by Lorinda:

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Tula Tuesday: Week 5

The Little One was sick all weekend, and she managed to infect me too. Needless to say, not much sewing was completed in the last 3 days!

However, I have a Tula Pink quilt I was going to show you one day this year, and since I don't have any blocks I suppose this day is as good as any!

I couldn't find the photo of me with Tula Pink and this quilt, but that was a small photo anyway.

I used a Four-Patch Poise style pattern... not really a pattern, but a technique... which I should make a tutorial for sometime this year because I have so much fun making the four-patch blocks.

The main print is Parisville -Cameo in Pomegranate from Tula Pink... this is an out of print line now so if you find it in a quilt shop somewhere grab it!

The border was the Plume -feathers print that I showed the first Tula Tuesday week. It was from when she was a designer with Moda instead of FreeSpirit, but the colors were spot on!

If you are participating in the Quilting Mayhem's 100 Modern Block Challenge be sure to share your blocks across all forms of social media using hashtag #qm100blockchallenge. I've been spending a lot of time the last few days being lazy so it would be a ray of sunshine to see other's progress.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Color Play Friday: Hydrangea

Oh Happy Friday! I'm so glad to see you!!!

I'm so happy for the weekend to be here! Weekends mean hanging out with the family, and doing nothing unless we want to do it!

The only thing I actually have planned this weekend is a Girl Scout Leadership meeting for our troop. We have to work out the details for Cookie booth sales! 'Tis the season folks! Buy Girl Scout Cookies. *smiles*

So if you are new to Color Play Friday thanks for checking it out! Lorinda and I started this back in September as a way to change our creativity and also challenge our blogging skills. We've had a lot of fun with it, and now we have people joining us which makes it even more fun.

If you would like to join in, you can check out the rules here. You will also find our layout tutorials and my palettes from the past.

This week is from Lorinda. I picked it because I wanted to work with the purples. I'm used to working with a Lizzy House for Andover or Cotton + Steel style purple which tend to lean towards plum or fuchsia. I thought it would be fun to work with a more "traditional" purple for once since I'm not normally inclined to use this color.

I also challenged myself to add an extra color/fabric to my normal layout. So that turned out fun I think.

I also did one other thing different this week!

I picked all my fabrics from SpoonFlower. I love SpoonFlower because its like a collective of random creativity from people who haven't necessarily been "discovered" by the quilting/fabric industry yet.

I don't order from Spoonflower often, but so far I haven't been disappointed. I encourage everyone to check it out. It is fun to search for random fabrics because there is so much available. This week I found all my fabrics in a search for "Scandinavian". Again I wasn't disappointed with what I found!

I really like how this turned out. It makes want to spend even more time on SpoonFlower! (Seriously you should search tea towel calendars because I can't be the only one to think that would be adorable!)

Be sure to check out the rest of this weeks #colorplayfriday blog roll:

If you are planning on joining us next week be sure to check out the rules, email us, and have fun playing with this photo taken at the Tulip Festival in Mount Vernon!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Tula Tuesday: Week 4

My week is a little bit thrown off, I almost forgot it was Tuesday!

The Little One didn't have school yesterday because of Teacher planning, and today we have an emergency PTSA meeting (which are usually held on Thursdays) to see if the school is going to adopt a local Cop and his K-9. I hope we can get this approved because I think the kids will love it so much!

Anyway, I finished my blocks for this week first thing this morning! Again, I wanted to keep going to complete more than two this week, but I have to prioritize the time and I have so many projects going on right now.

I really love how these turned out. I'm bringing in more of the Navy and making a few darker blocks. Next week I'm going to cut into the gnome fabric finally, and I can't wait to see how that turns out.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Giveaway Announcement!

Good morning!!

I'm finally starting to move around. The Little One is out of school so we are having a lazy day sprinkled with a few errands.

The first thing on the to do list today is choosing a winner for the the one pound of small scraps from Gypsy Wife!

Our winner is Cherow. I don't know this username this is off hand, I have an idea, but if this is you please email me and let me to confirm! I also need your mailing address. The Little and I are going to the library and the post office today, so we will pick up an envelope and then fold shove all the scraps nicely until they fit!

If you didn't win this time I'm sorry. I wish I could send little scrappy goodness to everyone! On the other hand, I'm still trucking along on the Gypsy Wife quilt. My new deadline, since the end of January apparently didn't work!, is now the end of February or rather as soon as possible.

Once the quilt top is done and revealed I will have another giveaway. Its another pound of scraps -the bigger cuts! You will want to keep an eye out for that!

Thank you to everyone who participated, and an extra thank you to those you played along on Instagram -I had fun looking at everyone's scrap solutions!