How I spoil my kid

I guess that should say kids but my oldest child seems to get spoiled in this way more than the youngest. Totally not fair at all. I’m not even going to make excuses. Hopefully some day I can even the score but at this rate it will be hard for her to catch up. See my oldest begs for quilts and blankets to be made for her. She has 6 quilts and I can’t even begin to determine how many blankets she has. She steals them as I make them. Or sometimes she just steals the fabric and pretends it is a blanket. One day I received a message from her daycare teacher admonishing me for sending my child to school with just a piece of fabric as a ‘blanket’. She of course was kidding, mostly.

This is the first quilt that I made my oldest. We were team green. Or team ‘I rather wait until the birth to find out so that I could pester my husband daily about boy and girl names.’ He was a curmudgeon when it came to names. He turned down many awesome names because they were ‘weird’. Obviously he didn’t grow  up as one of 500 Amandas in his class.

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Owls were all the rage back then. You know way back in 2011. I picked out some other adorable owls but I was told by a few that they were much too creepy.

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These Owls and Koala’s were adorable! While I was making it I was sure this was a very gender neutral quilt. I was delusional. Pregnancy throws off my sense of right and wrong. This was purely ‘boy’ oriented as I was convinced I was having a boy.

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Surprise! I had a girl! She wore a lot of boy clothes at first. Poor thing! I was also convinced that my second was a boy as well. Nope. I’m 2 for 2. I’m leaving it at that.

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Back to the quilt. This was my 2nd quilt ever. I was super proud. I didn’t even have a pattern for it. The wise quilting ladies at the quilt store helped me figure out all the Maths. Another pregnancy truth is that it robs women of their ability to do simple math. I’m still recovering this skill. One amazing thing about this quilt is that I used free motion quilting! No one told me that was a hard thing. I used free motion on my first quilt in small amounts and for this one I went all out. Now I’m much more reserved in my use as I’ve learned it is hard so now I fear it. It’s all mental.

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This quilt is loved though. Alice loves it and it is a staple in our quilt rotation. However, she is a girly girl and as she has aged (almost 4 years) she gravitates to her quilts that contain pinks, purples, dancers and Hell Kitty (her word for Hello Kitty). She has also expanded her tastes to pieces of black sequined fabric with raw edges that I hear from daycare spread sequins all over the place. I chuckle every time she decides to take that fabric to daycare with her. IMG_9256-2

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Where it all began

Many moons ago I use to be obsessed with knitting. I loved to spend time buying lovely wools, yarns and I would even spin some of my own. I was HARDCORE into yarn. A few times I was tempted by fabrics but I turned my back and went back to my wool. I outright refused to sew. Well that’s not true there was that time that I had to sew 30 smocks for work but that wasn’t really sewing. AND I used Walmart fabric that was $2.99/metre. So that doesn’t count.

Upon finding out I was pregnant with my first child and being underemployed I discovered this urge in me to make a quilt for the baby. So I went to my local quilting store to take a look. I had no clue what I was getting into. No clue. I was still under the impression that the actual quilting was a waste of time and ridiculous. Boy was I foolish! So long story short I walked in, fell in love with a quilt for me (not the baby), signed up for a class, bought a new sewing machine and started to hoard fabric.

IMG_9227At this point I had no clue there was such a thing as traditional quilting or modern quilting.

IMG_9255-2I did know that the dark cranberries and forest green fabrics didn’t call to me.

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Then I found fabrics online that made my heart happy. And that is when I found out that I was in trouble.

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Deep, deep, deep trouble.

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This is the quilt that started it all. This is the quilt that I grab first to curl up under on the couch. This is the quilt that my children play with almost daily. This is the quilt that helped me find my passion. For this quilt I am most thankful.

2015

So we are a month into 2015 and so far I’m pretty pleased with it. I think 2015 is going to be a great year! I’ve taken a lot of time to stop and think about where I am, where I want to go and what is really important to me. The one thing that I keep coming back to is that I need to slow down. I always feel the need to do it all, to do more and to be everything to everyone. This year I’m trying to change that. I need to slow down and enjoy where I am, who I’m with and what cool things every moment has for me. A big part of this is that I’m learning how to say no to people or projects. I also need to keep reminding myself that to end up where I want to be I need to be present in the moment I am currently in. Anyway, enough with that crap, I was so busy last year with getting stuff done that I didn’t get to share a lot of what I actually accomplish. So here are some pictures from one of my favourite quilts this year.

238My friend contacted me and said she was looking for a wedding gift for a friend and would like a quilt made. She had some scraps from the wedding decoration to give me to incorporate into the quilt. So she sent them my way and gave me a few idea’s and told me to have fun!

183The box had some great, vibrant colours to work with so I went to my stash and started to build up coordinates to fill out the quilt. We had decided to go with Anna Maria Horner’s Feather Bed Quilt. It was perfect for a scrappy quilt and is always gorgeous.

photo (41)It took me a couple of miscuts to figure out how to get the feathers to cut out properly but once I got it it was smooth sailing.

Earlier that summer I had made a trip to purchase some fabric from a friend and had bought some Habitat Singing Forest fabric by Jay McCarroll. I just loved it. I’m not completely sure why but I was just drawn to it and knew it would make an awesome quilt back.

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I wasn’t disappointed! This quilt was the perfect fit for it!

For the quilting I just decided to follow the direction of the feather vanes and surround each feather. On the back of the quilt then you would have an outline of each feather with no quilting within it. I forgot to take pictures of this. Here is a grainy close up of the front.

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I also decided to try cutting actual bias binding for the first time. This Riley Blake Happy Stripe fit the colours in the quilt perfectly!

il_340x270.443981967_3oyzNormally I just straight cut my binding but I knew cutting these stripes on the bias would be the perfect echo of the vanes in the feather.

IMG_3119The finished product just made me so happy. I equate the happiness of me finishing a quilt I’m absolutely in love with to what some people call a ‘runners high’. Let me tell you I do some running/jogging/moving my feet while gasping for air and I have never once felt ‘high’ or super happy after a run. Usually I just want a cheeseburger or a milkshake or to not move for a month. The feeling I get after finishing a great quilt keeps me going for days and this quilt kept me going for weeks.
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