Sew Day Adventure

M's party favors
M’s party favors

I went to Sew Day the other day with only one quiltmaking project on which to work. My main project was to put together party favors for my niece’s bridal shower, which I am hosting today,

I bought hand cream**, shower steamers**, ribbon** and bags** and realized I didn’t have time during the week to put them together. I remembered that I had Sew Day coming up and decided that would be my project.

M's party favors
M’s party favors

It was great to lay out all the bags and then match up a hand cream with a shower steamer. I was able to see everything I had and work through putting everything together without being interrupted by having to move everything or go to work.

The brands were different so it wasn’t just matching up the colors of the packaging. I thought about the different scents and tried to match them up where I could.

Amy's Cactus blocks
Amy’s Cactus blocks

I did so some quiltmaking work. As I said the other day, I cut out some of the Sotak Handmade Little Pyramid Pouches. While doing that cutting, Amy was across from me working on her Cactus quilt**. This will be a gift for someone she works with.

It is a really complicated pattern with a lot of pieces. She was able to finish one of the blocks at the Retreat. I noticed today that she now has 3 blocks. You can see how large they are.

Amy's Cactus block
Amy’s Cactus block

Her colors are really subtle. I find it hard to tell the difference between the background and foreground on this block with the round leaves. I can definitely see the foreground on the background, but there isn’t a lot of contrast.

This is a Sew Kind of Wonderful pattern, which Amy enjoys. She is the one who led the class in making Metro Twist. Unlike Metro Twist, this pattern requires the Wonder Curve Ruler**. The Wonder Curve ruler creates different curves.

Amy's Cactus block
Amy’s Cactus block

Her final block so far looks like an Aloe plant to me. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the quilt looks like.

I spent a little time just talking with MaryC and Gerre after I was done with my cutting project and the party favors. That was OK. Pretty soon I am going to have to start sewing the various projects  I have cut out. 😉









**N. B. : Obviously, you should shop at local quilt shops and small businesses. However, if you are too busy or can’t find what you need there, I use Amazon affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item’s link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

YM PJ Pants

At Sew Day the other week, I spent the time helping the YM start some PJ Pants. I know you are ROTFL when you think of me and garment sewing. Have no fear, I was under complete supervision.

I was thrilled, and kind of surprised, that the YM was willing to go to Sew Day with me.

PJ Pants pattern
PJ Pants pattern

He is in town working during the week, but comes over on the weekends. He wants to learn to make clothes better, especially costumes for events like Sakura-Con. I am not a great garment maker, but I thought I could handle this pattern, if Mary was there to answer questions. SIL #2 was also available for consultation. Sew Day was a great opportunity to work with him.

Mary C had told me that PJ pants were a good starting project. I couldn’t get the pattern she suggested, but I got one that was marked as ‘Easy to Sew’.

When she saw it, she was pleased. She told me that the pattern she has is really old and that this one would do fine. WHEW! There are three pattern pieces total. As a bonus, the pants have pockets.

YM prepping the pattern and fabric
YM prepping the pattern and fabric

Mary started out helping the YM, but I took over partway through as she was doing some handwork. I didn’t think it was fair to make her keep getting up.

There was a table set up near the kitchen and Mary suggested he work there. It was actually perfect, because it gave him plenty of room to work. As a bonus, I could get steps in walking back and forth.

He made a pattern with tracing paper first and did all the prep. He was surprised at how long the prep takes. I was reminded of my complaints about cutting out bags. Like mother like son, I guess.

YM Sewing pajama pants
YM Sewing pajama pants

He eventually got to sewing. My promise that the prep was worth it all came true then as the pants went together very quickly.

I brought my travel sewing machine with us. I was afraid he wouldn’t get to sewing and it would have been a waste, but he did get to the sewing part.

He needs practice, because some of his seam lines wandered a bit, but the more he sewed, the better he got.

YM and his almost pj pants
YM and his almost pj pants

He almost got the fabric to look like pants by the end of Sew Day. You can see in the photo that the outer seem is just clipped. They do look like pants, though.

He sewed the outer seam and zigzagged all the seams the next day. We only have to do the elastic in the waist and hem the bottom and he will have pants.

I suggested that he make a few pair to get into the groove. I explained to him how I like to make a bag pattern a few times to get the feel of it. I don’t know if he will do it, but he didn’t dismiss the idea out of hand.

March Sew Day

Well, Sew Day was fun. It was a Super Sew Day, which was great. Because the guild couldn’t afford the extra cost some of us met and slipped Mary C the money towards the cost. It was an intimate little crowd and we had a good time. The next day was regular Sew Day, so lots of people showed up, which was fun, too.

I have to say I was exhausted when I arrived home on Saturday night. Between the rain and wind, various errands, the art show and Super Sew Day, I was done even though I had fun and was excited.

Maria's Carrie Bloomston quilt
Maria’s Carrie Bloomston quilt

Lots was going on at Sew Day. I only took a picture of one of Maria’s projects, but she was working on finishing quilts she started a long time ago.

This quilt, as you can see, is a medallion quilt using Carrie Bloomston fabrics. By the time we were done on Saturday, she had added a pink border with an arrow motif that looked great. I forgot to ask her if this was a pattern or if she was making it up as she went along. Regardless, it is a fun quilt that uses simple blocks to great effect.

Amy's Ombre Christmas quilt
Amy’s Ombre Christmas quilt

Amy is the Energizer Bunny of the guild. She brings one quilt to various Sew Days and retreats and keeps working on it until she is finished. She has a busy job and doesn’t have a lot of time to sew at home.

I love how this quilt does not scream Christmas, but definitely has ‘is it Christmas or winter’? vibe about it. I love the use of V&Co’s ombre fabrics. The trees are wonderful. I especially like the blue ones.

QST 16 in the wild
QST 16 in the wild

Roz was working on my QST 16 donation quilt. I was so happy to see it getting a binding. This is the first one I made and it is so close to getting out into the world even as I contemplate and work on blocks for number three.

I am always thrilled to see how many people work on donation quilts. I know I often say that, but it really does make me happy. They are really a group effort.

I was thrilled that Friend Julie was able to make it both days. Since the weather was bad (rain on and off, and wind), it is always a crapshoot whether she will be able to get off the mountain. She was working on her Gypsy Wife quilt, which looks great. Jen Kingwell is calling the Gypsy Wife something else now, but Julie is calling hers Bohemian Wife. She is using a lot of bright prints and I can’t wait to see it finished.

Chris' stained glass quilt
Chris’ stained glass quilt

Chris doesn’t often make it to Sew Day, but she was there both days and she was on fire, working on her blue Kaffe stained glass quilt.

I am not always a fan of stained glass quilts, because the black ‘lead’ lines ruin the design. Chris used blue and it looks much better than black would have. The Kaffe Collective, including my man, Phil’s, fabrics look really great. You can’t really fussy cut these types of quilts, but the large motifs really stand out and look great.

La Pass border #2,345
La Pass border #2,345

In addition to cutting out a number of projects, including the Hildegarde and finishing the Sweetbay cutting, I worked on La Pass and started to cut out another Piebald.

This is a really hard section, because I am trying to fill in the top where I refused cut off the giant and beautiful rosette. Now I have to add about a yard of border to that side.

I had to do taxes and vote on Sunday, so I didn’t get to follow-up on any of these projects, but I will soon.


Sewing with Mary M

I couldn’t go to Sew Day, because I was driving my mom to Portland. Instead we had a Sew Day with Mary M on the way and that was a great substitute for the guild Sew Day I missed.

Mary M's workroom
Mary M’s workroom

She has a large and fabulous workroom. We both sewed there and Mom worked on her hand project with no issues and we didn’t trip over each other.

This is only half the room. To my left is a small office area where Mom sat near the window to hand quilt.

Bernina 570
Bernina 570

You can see that she has two very nice machine, a Bernina 570 and a Crescendo by Baby Lock.

Berninas were out of favor, sort of, for awhile, but I know 3 people who have purchased one in the past year or so.  Mary bought this machine, the embroidery module and the table from a friend who decided to go back to baking. She was still getting used to it when I was there.


Mary's Crescendo
Mary’s Crescendo

I sewed on her Crescendo. I never tried a Baby Lock before, but really liked the machine. I was quilting some parts for bags and the machine helped me speed through the work.

I have seen the ad on the YouTube video I watch for the invisible join tutorial. This is a very helpful video on how to join the ends of binding that you may have missed when I posted it the first time.

I used the automatic cutting feature, which I have never used before, the laser and the button for foot up and down. All of these features worked together to make quilting some bag parts much more palatable. It is also fun to try a different machine.

We had a good time.

Sew Day Round Robin

Rhonda's Round Robin
Rhonda’s Round Robin

I was stunned to see Rhonda pin this amazing quilt to the design wall. I really love the design and the colors.

I went and chatted with her about it. It turns out that it is a round robin with Amanda’s center. I believe those are Swoon blocks, like I used in my quilt, Swoon.

Rhonda has had the quilt for awhile and brought it to get started on her border.

I was really pleased to be able to see it. It is gorgeous.

Sew Day Velvet

Rosie Lee Tompkins 'Lines' quilt
Rosie Lee Tompkins ‘Lines’ quilt

A month or so ago Gerre asked me to help her think through the construction of a velvet quilt similar to one in the Rosie Lee Tompkins exhibit. We talked about foundation paper piecing the long strips that would make a quilt to look like the Rosie Lee Tompkins exhibit entry way quilt.

I don’t remember how this quilt was constructed, but I am pretty sure Ms. Tompkins didn’t use FPP. I could tell Gerre wasn’t 100% on board with the idea. At the time, I couldn’t think of anything else.

Gerre's velvet blocks
Gerre’s velvet blocks

Therefore I was pleased to see that she and Mary had come up with a plan to make the quilt in blocks using the quilt-as-you-go (QAYG) method. What a great idea! They are sewing strips of velvet on to batting, then will sew them together. This technique really helps keep the velvet under control as it is sewn.

At the beginning of the day they had a few blocks already done. I really like the blocks 2d from the right with the white squares. I also like that Gerre is not copying the Rosie Lee Tompkins quilt. I think it is great that she is making it her own.

Gerre's velvet blocks End of the day
Gerre’s velvet blocks End of the day

By the end of the day, they had most of the blocks made. The photo (left) may not show all of them. In this case I really like the black with the silver. I prefer the blocks that use the color as an accent. They are all really beautiful. The sheen of the velvet gives them an amazing lustre.

Community Quilts Sew Day

BAM Log Cabin Community Quilt in process
BAM Log Cabin Community Quilt in process

Peggy was very kind about the Ends Quilts I handed in last Saturday instead of working on the log cabin project she planned for Community Sew Day.

She, Julie and LeeAnn worked on it at Sew Day. I know Anna made a few blocks in advance that were incorporated into the quilt. I don’t think it was a very popular project. Maria, who made the suggestion, was in Portugal!

August 2023 BAM Sew Day Log Cabin
August 2023 BAM Sew Day Log Cabin

Anyway, regardless of the popularity of the project, one complete top was finished plus the three I handed in makes 4 total quilts for the day. Not great, but not terrible either.

The log cabin quilt is pretty colorful and scrappy.

Some Sew Day Photos

July 2023 Meeting Setup
July 2023 Meeting Setup

Part of Super Sew Day was the meeting. We couldn’t meet at our regular location so we met at the church where we have Sew Day and combined it with an extra Friday to make a Super Sew Day.

We used one of the design walls as a screen, which made me smile.

Orphan block community quilt
Orphan block community quilt

Claire showed off some Community quilts she made using random assortments of orphan blocks. She was trying to get people to take some of the packets of orphan blocks she had put together.

She chose well for the blue and gold quilt!

Orphan block community quilt
Orphan block community quilt

A couple of my 16 patch donation blocks were in this predominantly orange quilt.

Claire used other leftovers to put the quilt together.

I thought the whole presentation was a good idea and the examples were well done.

A Little Sew Day

It took two of us to be Mary at Sew Day. She was out of town and we had to fill in. Good thing I have done it a few times otherwise I would have been lost.

Cutting bags at Sew Day
Cutting bags at Sew Day

Of course, I spent the time cutting out the pieces for bags. I am making the Amethyst Project Bag by Sew Sweetness and the Kit Supply Tote by Aneela Hoey. I cut out all of the pieces for both so I can start sewing.

Designing the SJSA quilt
Designing the SJSA quilt

Sara from the Social Justice Sewing Academy was there with more blocks to make into a quilt. Members of the guild had done the embellishment on a lot of the blocks. It was really a group effort.

The first part was deciding how the blocks would go together. They usually go together in a 4 x 6 grid with sashing, which is what happened this time. Still the blocks have to be placed in the right location. In this case, there were some strong designs that had to be dispersed.

SJSA Quilt - April 2023
SJSA Quilt – April 2023

As usual, I didn’t participate. I kept an ear open and chatted with Sara and the others who were working on the project. I brought the Pink Strip Donation quilt, so I felt like I had been doing good. I also brought several donation blocks. I am doing my part.

I found out that the quilts are given to schools and libraries where they are displayed. I think they are given to the places where the artists come from. What I mean is that if an event was held at a school, then the quilt goes back to that school for display. A good idea, I think.

SJSA quilt sashing
SJSA quilt sashing

The fabric used for sashing had an interesting texture, but it was difficult to use and shredded easily. Still, the sashing strips they made look really nice.

You know I am not a fan of beige and brown, but these strips are very appealing.

They didn’t have time to finish putting the quilt together, though several people worked really hard for most of the day. I am not sure what happens if the quilt isn’t finished. Maybe some others will finish it?

Julie has a great post with more information about the SJSA quilt.

Melinda's embellishments on the SJSA block
Melinda’s embellishments on the SJSA block

I also saw Melinda’s finished block – or the block that Melinda embellished. It looks really great! It also got a great position in the quilt.

She added some gold metallic thread around the hands. She also added the stars and the words. It looks really good! The design is also very appealing.

BAMQ Thin Strips quilt
BAMQ Thin Strips quilt

Joelle brought the thin strips quilt as well. She did a FANTASTIC job! The quilt is wonderful. I looked for mine and thought she hadn’t included them, but I saw them scattered across the bottom of the quilt. See the one in the bottom right hand corner?

Sara saw this quilt and wants to incorporate the idea into the sashing of the next SJSA quilt. Interesting idea! I am so thrilled when synergies like this happen.

Sew Day Community Quilts

The recent Sew Day was a Community Sew Day. Most quilts were finished, but a few were taken home to finish. We think there were about 8 total.

Four Completed I Spy Tops
Four Completed I Spy Tops

SueS brought the leftover squares from her I Spy quilt project and most people worked on putting them together to make some community quilts. The quilts really turned out well. The solid sashing and borders really highlighted the variety of fabrics.

Amy's Pink Community I Spy top
Amy’s Pink Community I Spy top

Amy chose a variety of pink, or pink tending fabrics and used a dark pink for the border of her quilt top.

She told me she wanted to make something pink and girly. I would say she succeeded.

We all contributed to SueS’s stash of squares. I think the raspberry fabric in the center of Amy’s quilt is one that I donated.

Yellow Community I Spy top
Yellow Community I Spy top

This yellow top was the first one finished. I think Peggy sewed it, but I am not sure.

I think the blue number fabric in row 4, column 2 is a fabric that I provided as well. It is nice to see my fabrics show up in other people’s work.

I did not work on Community quilts today. I have the Pink Color Strip quilt in process and I needed to cut out pieces to make door prizes. If I had been thinking ahead, I could have worked with Mary, but I have been too busy at work to organize my sewing life very well.

SJSA Joins Sew Day

SJSA Sew Day blocks
SJSA Sew Day blocks

Cyndi invited a group from the Social Justice Sewing Academy to our Sew Day. Some of our group had finished blocks, so those were turned in. Sara, the organizer, brought a different group of blocks that were to be made into a quilt.

People worked together to put sashing on the blocks and sew them together.

I was tired and stayed in my corner working on the Half Hexies. I wasn’t up for a group project that day.

SJSA Sew Day blocks with sashing
SJSA Sew Day blocks with sashing

The group achieved a lot. They put thin sashing around each block and then worked on larger pieced sashing (no photo). They decided to put the larger pieced sashing on backwards so the raw edges show. I am not sure the point, especially after quilting, but it was definitely a design choice.

The themes of the blocks varied. I might have put all environmental blocks together in one quilt and all animal blocks together in another quilt. I can see the appeal of varying the themes as it makes people really look at them to see what else is there.

SJSA block
SJSA block

My favorite block has a fantastic design. The design is very simple and clear IMO. It also has a graphic quality and provides a lot of scope for discussion. Whoever designed this block should get an award. Great job.

It was fun to see the blocks up close and contemplate the messages. If you want to participate, check the SJSA website for more details

Super Sew Day

Super Sew Day view
Super Sew Day view

I spent the last three days at Sew Day, well, 2.5 days as we started Thursday at 1pm. Saturday was the busiest with about 16 people. Thursday was the least busy with about 8.

Month 14 basting/cutting in process
Month 14 basting/cutting in process

I arrived a little early so Mary and I could set up the tables, irons and food. We had help from Sue S and some others. Then we started sewing. I started off basting La Pass Month 14. Yep, Month 14 is here and Nope, I haven’t finished Month 13. Like Month 1, however, Month 14 is the outer right of Month 13, so I can sew them together at the same time. It makes hand sewing a little easier that I have not finished Month 13 yet.

My station is on the other side of the sewing machine in the first photo (above). That is Friend Julie’s machine in the bottom right of the photo. She joined the guild and I was able to convince her to come to Sew Day. I am almost more excited about what she got done than my accomplishments! 😉

Julie's Kitchen Sink quilt
Julie’s Kitchen Sink quilt

She worked on finishing her Kitchen Sink quilt, which she started in a BAM class with Maria Shell. She had already quilted most of it, but did a little more quilting then made and attached the binding.

I think the quilt looks really good and quite cohesive. The colors are fun and interesting, too. There is also a lot to look at. This is one of the projects on Julie’s September to do list and I am excited she made such great progress.

Another project on Julie’s September To Do list is her Japanese houses. She worked on making the back, which turned out really well, but could be another top! I forgot to take a photo, so you’ll have to go look at her blog for more info and a view.

I had a little more basting to do when I arrived on Friday. I had left one of the fabrics in the dryer at home. After I finished the last few small pentagons, I started cutting out other projects.

First I worked on cutting out pockets for the Brocade Peony UCAB. Remember I cannibalized the pockets I made for that UCAB for my improved UCAB? I was able to finish all the pieces and parts for the pockets on Saturday, I think.

Sew Hungry Hippie Essential Tote order
Sew Hungry Hippie Essential Tote order

As soon as I finished the pockets, I started cutting out the fabrics and vinyl for the Sew Hungry Hippie Essential tote pattern. I was able to cut out all the pieces except the exterior, because I am waiting for another piece of AMH’s Glow to arrive and I forgot to wash the other AMH fabric (left) I bought. I wanted to use that Spanish Rose vinyl (photo left) and I wanted to use it with Anna Maria’s Glow colorway. I know it is a shocking pink. I just bought it recently and I want to use it while I am excited (and not horrified) about it.

I didn’t mean to make two of these totes, but now I am. The webbing won’t be super comfy, but it is glitter webbing and super fun. One good thing is that I used up most of my regular vinyl with all of these projects, so now I can switch completely to glitter vinyl. Yay!

Once I finished cutting what I could for the Essential Totes, I started cutting for the ByAnnie Project Bags. I need more holders for in process projects. I know I am a glutton for punishment since I started making 5 of these. Yes, FIVE. I am a lunatic.

I had to lay out the cut pieces on a free table, clipped together, so I could be sure I had cut all the pieces for each different bag.

I was able to finish cutting out all of those Project Bags pieces on Saturday before lunch. As soon as I finished lunch, I started quilting the main panels.  Somehow quilting at Sew Day is less terrible than quilting at home. I quilted four of the main panels, which leaves one left to quilt, then I’ll be done and ready to put them together. I kind of wanted all the quilting done at Sew Day, but we don’t get everything we want.

Maria's eggs at Sew Day
Maria’s eggs at Sew Day

A lot was going on at the event. I don’t know why Maria had eggs next to her sewing machine, but she did. I didn’t get a chance to ask.

You can see Patti and Anna talking in the background. Their table was pretty full, though people moved around the room quite a bit so it looks pretty empty in this photo.

New Mary came and got her door prize bag. There was a lot oohing and aahing over the contents. That made me feel good.

Sue S' grandson's quilt top
Sue S’ grandson’s quilt top

Sue S has a grandson who is interested in quiltmaking. He has made a quilt, which we were pleased to having hanging on one of the design walls at Sew Day.

I was impressed with the sophistication of the design. It is all half square triangles, but the design is quite elaborate. I kind of want to make that design in different fabrics.

He joined us for Sew Day via FaceTime and got to see what we all were doing.

Maria basting her Plus quilt
Maria basting her Plus quilt

Maria basted a quilt on the wall. I tried that technique a few years ago and it didn’t work for me, but she was very successful. I love the quilt, too. She did a nice job choosing fabrics.

I came home on Friday exhausted. It was a result of walking back and forth to the cutting table all day. That was hard. I took a break from my daily walk on Saturday and didn’t feel the exhaustion as much, though I was still tired.

All in all, I am pleased with what I accomplished. I don’t know that I can cross anything off my to do list, but I’ll soon be able to do so.

Amy’s Rainbow

Rainbow Strips - Amy
Rainbow Strips – Amy

Remember when I talked about Sew Day? I mentioned a future donation quilt (no progress yet). I talked about some Sew Day Improv I worked on with Tim and Mary to create a quilt that would keep someone warm and comfy. I also talked about basting La Pass Month 10. What I didn’t talk about -yet- was Amy’s amazing rainbow quilt.

The first thing I saw was the line of strip stacks laid out on two long tables.

Rainbow - first draft
Rainbow – first draft

As the day progressed, I began to see the piece take shape. Amy struggled with not having a complete set of colors/shades/tones to make a smooth transition between colors. She was determined to make it work. I could sympathize after working with the various Fabric of the Year quilts. Unlike painting, generally we work with certain fabric prints and can’t alter them (yes, I know there is fabric painting and dyeing, but you know what I mean) like painters can on the fly.

Amy's Rainbow - 2d draft
Amy’s Rainbow – 2d draft

The piece progressed well, I think. There was a lot of moving around of strips and a lot of people got involved.

Amy wasn’t super picky that everything flowed into one another. I think the rest of us were more invested in the outcome than she was.

Amy is cleaning out her workroom and I think this was a set of Allison Glass strips she wanted to use. I didn’t hear what her plans were for the final piece.

Amy's Rainbow - near final
Amy’s Rainbow – near final

I did not get a picture of the final piece. This is close, though, to the final layout.

Maria helped Amy sew, so the piece could get finished by the end of Sew Day.

The piece is cheerful, regardless.