Thursday, June 18, 2015

New Pantographs at Urban Elementz!

I'm a little behind in sharing these - but check out the two newest pantographs at Urban Elementz by Patricia and I!

Lather Rinse Repeat

Lather Rinse Repeat on Patricia's quilt using Appliqué Elementz!


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Princess Livvie is Here...Update

I am so sorry for neglecting my blog - I know I promised to update during my maternity leave and I have been horrible at it!  The first few weeks of May were spent mostly organizing, cleaning, and preparing for our little Olivia's arrival.  Of course I had planned to work on my own projects, and I have some, but I think I needed the breather from crafting and sewing as at 9 months pregnant my energy was waning.

Olivia arrived as scheduled on May 30, 2015 via c-section.  I started having contractions the morning of my scheduled surgery so I feel pretty confident that she was coming pretty soon on her own if we had not already had a repeat section planned.  She came about an hour later than expected, at 1:37 and weighed in at 6 pounds 11 ounces and 20 inches long.

Part of why I haven't updated is that 24 hours after Olivia's birth she failed a routine newborn heart screening.  I don't remember the name of the test but from what I understand it's a new one they do at our hospital, and it's only been in effect for about a year.  My daughter is the second child ever at this hospital to fail the screening...and because of that she was sent to Rainbow Babies and Children's NICU in Cleveland, Ohio.  Our hospital also eliminated it's NICU unit since the last baby we'd had there - I was very saddened by that.

We are so fortunate and blessed to report that Olivia's problems were very small.  She had a small hole in her heart - a flap that hadn't completely grown closed, something that was supposed to happen in the last few days in the womb.  She also had quite a bit of fluid in her lungs...the cord was wrapped twice around her neck when born and she didn't let out the loud cries that you normally hear from a newborn baby...though she did cry.  She scored 8/9 on the Apgar so she seemed in good condition, until she started throwing up everything she ate and wouldn't keep anything down - and she began breathing strange to compensate for the lack of oxygen she was taking in due to the hole in her heart.  We spent four days at Rainbow with Olivia on IV nutrition and oxygen until her little heart grew enough to be on her own.

It was hands down the most terrifying ordeal I have ever been through - but absolutely NOTHING compared to some of the stories we've heard since.  I have a new compassion for parents who've had children with illness.  From what I understand the doctors explained that Livvie's issues are very common with preemie and c-section babies...and luckily for her not life threatening.  She needed round the clock care and monitoring until she grew enough to breath and eat on her own.  She had two echo cardiograms while there both showing that her heart is growing on its own and they determined she will likely never need surgery...but she does go in for a follow up echo in six months to be sure it's doing what they anticipate.

On top of all of that I was discharged with Olivia so I could be with her - 24 hours after having a c-section which is not the norm...I had my own set of complications when I came home, so it has been quite an overwhelming month!!  Things are starting to get back to normal now - thank goodness - and I am looking forward to resuming quilts in just a few short weeks.

I'm so sorry for the delay in updates!  Thank you so much to those who sent me messages and emails to check in on us!  :)

Monday, May 4, 2015

Our Recent Family Photo Session

Just sharing a few of the family/maternity photos my good friend Amanda from Edward Rose Photography took of us on Saturday!  I cannot wait to see the rest of the photos, they turned out so beautiful!  We are hoping to hire her again to take family pictures after Olivia arrives...and some newborn baby photos too!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Darlene's Feels Like Spring Quilt Finished!

I absolutely loved quilting this one!  It was so much fun thinking up different backgrounds for each of the appliqués.

The pattern is called "Feels Like Spring" by Smith Street Designs.  Darlene Gerber is the owner and top maker.

The quilt was quilted entirely with Bottom Line Thread by Superior Threads.  It is quickly becoming my go to thread for custom work.

We used a layer of Hobbs 80/20 batting layered with Hobbs Tuscany Wool on top to make the appliqué's pop.

Because of the intricate detail of the embroidery on the appliqué's there is actually NO quilting on the flowers themselves.  Luckily, there was so much detail around the small leaves and petals that I was able to squeeze in and still give a close tightly quilted feeling.   The use of double batting and a lofty wool on top helped to keep the unquilted areas very full against the densely quilted bordering designs.

This was such great fun to work on!  I'm going to guesstimate 50-60 hours quilting time with two weeks on the frame.  I moved a turtle's pace truly only finishing three or four blocks some days, only because of the wear on me with carrying baby Olivia.  :)  I think I would have moved much faster if I weren't big as a house!
I didn't start out intending on adding quite this much detail - but it was so fun and turning out so lovely I kept adding.  I think the finished quilt is fantastic!  I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity to work on such a lovely quilt.

Now I am off until July but I will still be posting my own work.  I am looking forward to a few months off to enjoy baby and work on my own projects!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

A Few More Appliqué Blocks

I finished a few more appliqué blocks on Darlene's floral appliqué quilt yesterday.  This quilt really is a joy to work on.  I have had a lot of questions about the pattern - it's called "Feels Like Spring" by Smith Street Designs.  It's an embroidery pattern - meaning you'll need to have an embroidery machine to create it...and after seeing all of the beautiful flower details that can be created I have to say an embroidery machine is on my Christmas list already!  The lily of the valley block below is my favorite of the entire quilt...

I have Darlene's quilt scheduled through the end of April and although I've been a madwoman getting quilts completed these past few weeks, I'm certainly feeling almost 9 months pregnant and am taking my time with this one.

I had a bit of a long and exhausting weekend and yet another coming up this weekend.  Baby Dr. appointments are now two weeks apart now and honestly, though I know they are good for baby and me both, they are a total inconvenience!  LOL  We have a busy schedule as it is and I'm so grateful I have a Husband who likes to come with me.  So we go on his days off but it is out of town and right now they mainly just measure my tummy and check her heartbeat.  I think my appointment coming up this week I will have another ultrasound to get an idea for how much she weighs - so that I am really looking forward to.

Just a few more weeks - I have a scheduled cesarean planned for the end of May, so a few more quilting posts and then hopefully I'll be able to share some photos of our newest little addition!  :)

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Darlene's Kaleidescope and A Feathery Floral in Progress

Getting a lot of finishes done lately - I'm getting kind of excited at the idea of having a whole month just to clean house, organize, and work on my own quilt.  Baby comes in about six weeks!

Here's a few shots of Darlene's Kaleidescope quilt...

I had a lot of fun quilting this little one.  I want to say it's only 40 x 40?  I was able to get it done in one work day which is rare unless I'm doing an E2E or pantograph!  :)  I used Glide thread which I love for things like all overs and also straight line quilting.

Her next quilt is a lovely floral appliqué that we decided to go a little more detailed with.  For this one I'm using all Bottom Line thread in both the top and the bobbin.

More photos to come as this one will likely take me a little longer...not only is it a large quilt but there will be lots of pebbling and detail work.  I'm looking forward to it though - it feels very very summery!  :)

Friday, April 10, 2015

"Our" MQX Blue Ribbon Winner!

I spent most of yesterday floating on cloud nine...I have a ton of work today so it's back to reality.  But I DO have some wonderful and exciting news to share...
Remember this quilt I worked on last fall that ribboned at the 2015 Tuscon Quilt Fiesta guild show?  Well it won FIRST place in the Quilts Among Friends category at MQX East!!!

"Better Than Prozac" by Barbara Moran (quilted by me!)

Woohoo way to go Barbara!  That's a mighty fine BLUE ribbon!

I am OVER THE MOON to say the least.  The very best part for this long arm quilter?  MQX is one of the few shows that also awards a ribbon to the quilter as well as the piecer!  I only saw one hanging on the quilt at the show and often times you'll see both hanging right on the I double checked with Janet-Lee and she confirmed that I indeed will get a ribbon.  I can't tell you what a big deal that is to me!  It is just so rare to get any recognition as the quilter at all outside of a mention in passing on the description card...and I passionately believe it should be the standard at all shows.  I do a lot of quilting on quilts intended for show, and knowing just how HARD you work as the quilter to likely never see it again...that ribbon is a really stinking big deal to me!

I just finished up an intense custom that if I can I will try and share a few sneaks of.  It's kind of a hush hush quilt so I cannot share full photos.  I'm also finishing up a baby quilt today and have two more really amazing quilts lined up that I'm anxious to share.

WHEEW!  What a busy week!  I'm thrilled to share this exciting news and hope all of you out in blog land are doing well!  It's starting to feel like SPRING!  :)