Drowning in Fabric

Forever cleaning, organizing and creating

Blogger’s Quilt Festival entry – Citrus Bento

I am excited to enter my Citrus Bento quilt into the Blogger’s quilt festival.

Citrus Bento

Citrus Bento

 

It is 90 x 66″ (312″ around) in the bento box pattern. I followed a tutorial from Quilts of Love.

Citrus Bento back

Citrus Bento back

 

I pieced the back from bricks and layers in leftover and complementary fabrics.  The rest of the back is from Beachwood Park.

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The binding is from Moda’s Eat Your Fruits and Veggies.

 

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I mostly straight line quilted with variegated Aurifil. On my DSM.

For more detailed posts about this quilt please see here.

Thank you for visiting my quilt. Please vote for it in the Large Quilt category in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival!

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Friday Finish: Citrus Bento

It is done! It only took a year! Well, most of that year it was just sitting on a shelf ignored.

To recap:

I started this quilt last year at stash bash where I was led to believe by the tutorial that it could be completed in an afternoon. Well, I spent 15 STRAIGHT hours that first day at stash bash working on it and it still wasn’t finished. That didn’t include the cutting, which I had done ahead of time. I completed the main part of the top the next morning. I made the borders last May. Then, lacking inspiration for the back I folded it up and put it away.

As Stash Bash 2014 crept closer, I felt the pressure to complete this quilt, as that would mark a year since I started it. I do have one (much) older wip, but really didn’t want this one to languor past the year. Over the course of the year, I had collected fabrics that might work for backing or binding. I also had quite a bit of leftovers. I was still not sure what to do with the back, but finally sat down and busted something out. I immediately basted and worked on quilting.

I again wasn’t sure what to do, and even though I’ve really been trying to FMQ, I felt with all the straight geometric lines I needed to go that route – even if it would probably take longer. I used my walking foot and straight(ish) lines quilted on either side of the seams in the blocks. (Which I don’t have a good picture of) I used variegated Aurifil thread in orange/yellow/white (choosing against the lime green. Wisely, I think.)

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Then in the white borders I quilted several lines which crossed in the corners. In the middle border I quilted Xs. I still struggle with keeping lines straight on large quilts on my machine. No matter how careful I am, I still have drag or shifting.

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I am in love with the binding. I found it at my favorite store last fall and knew immediately it would work great in this quilt. It works so well as the binding, having all three colors in it, making a nice frame and transition from front to back.

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I also tried something new – I hand sewed the binding on this one. I have never done that before and felt it was something I needed to do. I am aware there is a certain …snobbery… over how bindings are attached. I’ve always liked the speed of machine binding, but believe I need to try something before I knock it. So now I can knock it. LOL. I was not enamored of the hand binding process. The upside was that I could do it while being with my family in the evening (instead of at 2am like I normally do). Other than that, I am not sure what the love affair is. It does not seem nearly as secure to me, for starters – and most important. And it took forever.  I definitely got better and quicker as I went along – my stitches are more even and invisible at the end than the beginning.

Citrus Bento

Citrus Bento

Citrus Bento back

Citrus Bento back

See all my posts about this quilt here

See my goal post here

Finish it up Friday!

Linking also to the FAL

Here is my goal post: https://drowninginfabric.wordpress.com/2014/04/10/finish-along-q2/

 

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Bento back

So my complete focus the last few weeks has been my Citrus Bento quilt. This is the quilt I started at stash bash last year and am determined to bring completed this year. My biggest hold up (other than having other more pressing things to finish) has been my inability to decide what to do for the back, or to choose a good fabric for it. Then a few months back Fabric.com did a super dooper clearance on this fabric, which I thought might work.

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Then they only sent me half what I ordered. Not enough for the back. Though I never really planned to just use this on the back. I like to piece my backs. But I was still pretty uninspired for what to do. I had leftovers of most of the fabrics I used in the front, plus several fabrics that I wish I had had when I made the quilt. I decided to cut layers and bricks and create a back from those.

Here are my (really crappy) pictures of the back:

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I wasn’t as enamored of it as I had hoped (I was hoping to be able to do another stripe of the Beachwood Park in the middle, but not enough) but maybe it will look better when it is on the back of the quilt and not all wrinkly on my grass.

I finally got it basted –

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And am quilting it now.

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April ALYOF Goal – Citrus Bento

So, it is April.

That means Stash Bash!

Last year at Stash Bash I spent a day and a half psychotically slaving away on my Citrus Bento top. I completed the top in May and then it sat on a shelf for most of the year as I prioritized other projects. I had sworn to myself some time ago that it would be finished before Stash Bash this year. As much as I’d like to show it off and all that to the people who watched me obsess over it, it is more that Stash Bash marks a year since I started it. I hate to know that this quilt top has sat that long, untouched.

At that point I was still so new to sewing and even though I had made a few tops, didn’t really believe I would ever find the guts to actually finish a quilt. Though I thought at the time I had tons of fabric (HA!) I had to scour sales to find the colors I wanted in this quilt. I even used several (GASP!) non QSQ prints.

So, anyway, That’s my goal. To arrive at Stash bash with this quilt completely finished. I finished the back a couple weeks ago (which I still need to post about) and basted it and started quilting it. I need to finish quilting, bury the threads, and bind.

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WIP Wednesday

So I am currently in Florida with my parents and the baby.

My view :D

My view 😀

Initially, I didn’t think I was going to be able to bring my machine with me, and I wasn’t sure I’d have time to sew if I did. But I managed to be very selective in the projects I brought and fit the machine and a duffel of fabric in the car. I’ve been sewing at night after the baby goes to bed and today it is raining so I should be able to get some time in. Here is what I brought:

  • Bento top to be bordered
  • Tumbler top and backing – to make the back, and baste and quilt it.
  • Ribbon top to be bordered
  • Ribbon back to be made
  • Bloom bloom pow top and back
  • scraps

I decided to start with my bento top since I thought that would be the quickest and easiest to cross off the list. Even so, it was not without its challenges. Mostly because of my stupidity.

Strip piecing the border

Strip piecing the border

Holes in the sashing. Ripped that out and replaced it.

Holes in the sashing. Ripped that out and replaced it.

Sewed sashing on upside down. Ripped that out and fixed it.

Sewed sashing on upside down. Ripped that out and fixed it.

finished top!

finished top!

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And, of course, the errors:

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These are the sort of things that will drive me insane. But I guess not enough to rip out everything I have done and fix them. Oh well. I am not sure the corner one could have been avoided, but maybe if I had been paying more attention and tried. The double white was from sewing two strips end to end and I didn’t pay attention.

The other one I have been working on is my bloom bloom pow QAL. After checking many stores for a 60 degree triangle, I finally just ordered online and had it sent to me here. It arrived yesterday. I don’t know why they are so difficult to find. I started cutting my triangles while watching tv last night. I got about halfway through. I am going to get back to work on it once I am done here.

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I have also made some tough decisions. My 3×6 bee started a new quarter today. I did not sign up this round. I am going to be away a lot over the next few months, and I have already been feeling that it takes away from my own sewing goals. I just want to be able to focus on what I want to work on during the time I have. I have passed up some other opportunities for the same reasons. Shipping has been getting expensive too.

There’s one more WIP going on… When I arrived back from Stash Bash, I happened to notice a large section of the underside of our roof had collapsed. It was in an area of our house we don’t see often, so who knows how long it has been like that. We have critters getting into the attic. And upon further inspection, they are chewing holes in the trim in other areas of our house. We had the repair people out… Part of the issue is that there is apparently NO paint on our house, when it was done it was done wrong, and our wood trim is rotting. That’s allowing the animals to get in and make things worse. So, in addition to repairing the damage, we have to have the entire house painted. Now, we have been talking about getting the house painted for about a year. We knew it needed it, but we thought it was purely cosmetic. Something to make our house hold its own as the only wood home in a subdivision of brick. But it was a lot of money to spend on something cosmetic, and other more necessary things kept coming up. And, honestly, if I were going to do cosmetic work on the house, I can think of several other things that rate more highly for me. I have such a love-hate relationship with my house. The money pit. Oh well. Now it is a necessity. With everything going on lately, our savings is pretty much shot now. We have to get really strict with our spending, and I am considering a part time job.

Anyway, we figured as long as we had to paint it, maybe we should take advantage of it.

Here is my house now

Here is my house now

testing paint colors

testing paint colors

 

And here is what it will look like. You know, paint wise. We aren't ripping the whole house down and rebuilding, as much as it might need it. :D

And here is what it will look like. You know, paint wise. We aren’t ripping the whole house down and rebuilding, as much as it might need it. 😀

 

Work is starting right now, and my house will look completely different when I come home. As distressed as I am about money, it is exciting to get this done.

 

Linking to….

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Stash Bash report, part 1

There is so much to tell; this is going to have to have many multi parts.

Stash Bash was awesome. I am so glad I went. It was kind of a spur of the moment decision, since I found out the last day of registration. It is really hard for me to do things like this – go somewhere I don’t know, all alone, with people I don’t know who all seem to know each other already. But I am so glad I did. I met so many cool and fun and talented people. I had a lot of fun and a lot of inspiration. And a lot of sewing! Everyone was so friendly and welcoming.

The only picture I took of our surroundings.

The only picture I took of our surroundings.

I think the best way for me to tackle retelling is chronologically. We were at a camp. The grounds were beautiful, and luckily, so was the weather. The bunkhouse was right next to the large dining and meeting building, where we spent the majority of our time. We had a lovely view of the lake from our sewing room. I set my stuff in my spot in the sewing room, then went to take the rest of my things to the bunk. I was actually the first in my room, and even though there were detached beds I happily claimed this corner bunk. I like the cavelike security. 😀

My bed.

My bed.

Once I got settled back into the sewing area and got my things unpacked, I had to decide what to start with. After briefly considering my ribbon border, I grabbed my citrus strips, because that was what I really wanted to work on. The online tutorial states, and I quote, “Here is the finished Strip-Pieced Bento Box lap quilt top (and assembled in only a couple of hours!).” (Now, I did do the twin size, not the lap size, but still….it’s only a few more blocks.)  So I figured, I’d spend a few hours putting it together, have a quick finish under my belt, then move on to my ribbon border. Yeah….

So I chain sewed the strips

So I chain sewed the strips

Then pressed and cut them

Then pressed and cut them

And again...

And again…

and again....

and again….

13 hours later...

14 hours later…

Yes, FOURTEEN HOURS I spent working on this on Friday. Pretty much straight. I wasn’t doing tons of socializing or breaks. And it wasn’t done. I didn’t even spend tons of time working on layout. Not as much as I would have if it was earlier and I wasn’t hurting so much. I actually did get the first couple rows sewn together before I packed it in at 1:30 AM. I was the lone holdout. I probably would have kept going if others had stayed as well, but everyone else turned in early. I unplugged the iron, turned out the lights and crawled into bed. And I HURT. My back, my shoulder, my head… everything hurt.

Oh, that bottom corner… One of my strips didn’t cut enough squares for some reason. I was going to just leave it and finish it at home, until I finally realized Saturday morning that I brought a bunch of scraps with me. I took a chance and luckily did find a big enough scrap of the fabric to finish that last block.

First thing Saturday morning, I was back at it. I thought things might move a bit faster at this point, but I actually didn’t get it finished until around 4 in the afternoon. Now, to be fair, we took a field trip for a couple hours to a quilt shop and I did a lot more visiting and socializing Saturday. I was more relaxed about it and not as rushed.

and here it is

and here it is

This is my finished top. Well… I still have to do the border. I seem to have a problem with finishing borders. I didn’t bring extra fabric to make it, so I knew that part would get finished at home. The top row has full squares, it is just folded over that rail so I could take the picture. Whenever I look at it, I think I sewed some on backwards, but they are all correct. It tricks my eyes! I am pretty pleased with it. There are only a couple places where seams don’t line up, and I think I only had to rip three or four blocks that were missewn. So, I think that is really good progress… especially considering my marathon work on it and how late I worked. (Couple of hours my @$$!)

Linking to…

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