Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Christmas Traditions (Brushing off the Cobwebs)

Hats off to Mr RLQ, who watched baby A for an entire weekend day so I could sew! After much deliberation (but that's its own post) I decided to go with my one (yes one) remaining WIP from last year; Christmas Traditions.

To jog your memory, Christmas Traditions is a quilt from Best Quilts For Christmas 2011 magazine, based on J Wecker Frisk's Christmas Traditions fabric.  It was my first paper piecing project, and  when last we left it, this is what it looked like:

It's definitely the most technically challenging quilt I have ever tried. It requires paper piecing and applique, both of which I had never done when I started. But I love the look of it, and the fabrics are rich and beautiful. It captures the history of the Christmas tree, and last year I caved on the matching tree skirt as well.

Anyways, next up was applique.  Fortunately, it had been over 6 months since I finished Star Wars (and really, 2.5 months since I did any quilting at all), so I was nicely recharged on that front.

Unfortunately, even after a full day's sewing, I am still working on all the side blocks; but the center blocks are completed, and I am getting really excited to assemble!

Linking up to WIP Wednesday, Which I have also missed since taking my "maternity leave" from quilting.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Thursday, January 10, 2013

My First Postpartum Project

Oh, the glamorous life of a working, breastfeeding mother: drop baby off at daycare, morning emails, pump. Morning telecon,  manage whatever crisis occurred after you left yesterday, pump. More meetings, more emails, a little document review, pump, then go home and wonder when you were supposed to have lunch. Admittedly, I am extremely fortunate to *have* a job that lets me pump on all 3 of my breaks, but after 4 weeks of being back, washing and drying my pump parts three times a day was starting to get old. Enter my first "mom" sewing project - terry cloth bags for my pump parts!

All in all these took about $5 worth of supplies (most of the cost was in the zipper) and maybe 40 minutes of time - not bad for a mom on the run!

I have a Medala pump, and as with many of my projects, I flew by the seat of my pants on this one. I measured out the valves and made a 6" x 6" zippered bag for them. For the breast shields I used a drawstring pouch that started out 12" in circumference and 10" tall, but got a height reduction (intentional) partway through. One day I will change out the ribbon for something that goes better.

Overall, this was a fun project: I would have preferred to make a quilt, but this is definitely a FAR more functional refresher project. I have already taken it to work 2 days in a row and it is SO nice 1) to not have to track my pump parts individually - I can store them in their bags and just make sure the bags make it to work each morning - and to just be able to rinse my pump parts after each use and throw them in a moisture-absorbent bag. I had been using paper towels, but that just led to a sea of paper in my tote bag. We'll see how these hold up over the next couple of months of use, but for now I'm just excited they gave me an excuse to get the machine out.

Oh, and for anyone who wants to try this at home: be aware that when you cut terrycloth the little bits of terry get everywhere. Just ask my cat Emily, who likes to sit in my lap as I sew. She got quite the extra coat that night, and so did I. Happy Sewing!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

2012 Completions

2012 was year of the baby. Five of my seven quilting creations this year went to babies, including my own! First-trimester tiredness stalled me out from about February to June, but then I made up for lost time in late summer and early fall. Haven't done much since baby A came in October, but that's all right; First-time motherhood means I get my first chance to enjoy baby quilts received instead of given.


Completed: Jan 2012
Design by Carlene Westenberg, Fabric Froggin' by Sue Zipkin for Clothworks
Pieced and Quilted by RLQ, Professionally quilted by Another Mary Ann
Lovingly gifted to my friend B's son, at her baby shower.

Ready, Set, Snow

Completed: Jan 2012
Original design by RLQ, Fabric from Me & My Sister's Ready Set Snow for Moda
Pieced and Quilted by RLQ

Star Wars

Completed: June 2012
Original design by RLQ, Applique based on the works of  Jeff Victor @ Wicked Crispy
Pieced and Quilted by RLQ
Lovingly gifted to S (shown here) whose father and mother are both good friends.

 Eclectic Garden

Completed: July 2012
Design and Fabric by Jason Yenter, Eclectic Garden Collection
Pieced by RLQ, Professionally quilted by Another Mary Ann

Alien Invasion

Completed:  August 2012
Design modified from the Moda Bake Shop, Fabric Alien Invasion by Amy Bradley
Pieced by and Quilted by RLQ
Lovingly gifted to my nephew G (shown here) upon his birth.

 Trick Or Treat

Completed: September 2012
Design by RLQ, Fabric Trick Or Treat By Doodlebug Designs for Riley Blake
Pieced and quilted by RLQ
Lovingly gifted to my own daughter, born 10/11/12.


Completed: October 2012
Design by RLQ, Assorted Fabrics
Pieced and quilted by RLQ
The centerpiece quilt for my daughter's nursery, which I finished when contractions were 8 minutes apart (go me).


Compass Pillow

Paper Pieced by RLQ for the Oklahoma City Modern Quilt Guild Scrap swap

Roller Shade

A fly-by-the-seat-of-my pants project to make a curtain for our back door before the neighbor's fence-tunneling dog and my status as a breastfeeding mother led to an awkward moment with the neighbors.

Pump Part Bags

A terry cloth solution to toting wet breast pump parts to and from work every day. My first postpartum project..


Quilts: 7
Other: 3