Gifts to Myself

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!  My in-laws took my husband and I down to the Dominican Republic for a week of relaxation in the sunshine.  I definitely needed it!

Since we’ve been back, we’ve been busy, busy, busy with putting up our outdoor Christmas lights, getting the tree set up and decorated, and doing all of our Christmas shopping.  Needless to say, I haven’t gotten to spend much time on my sewing machine!

I did get a few “gifts” to myself that arrived over the holiday though.  First, I ordered a walking foot and a free motion quilting foot set (that comes with 3 different attachments) for my Janome Sewist 500.  Now that I have a quilt top ready to be quilted, I figured I needed to invest in the proper tools to make my life easier.

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I also came home to beautiful package from Michele at Quilts From My Crayon Box.  She’d finished sorting all of the charms from our Kate Spain Charm Swap and my two sets had arrived back at my doorstep.

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This is just 1 of my two sets.  Look at all the beautiful colors!  Can’t wait to make a quilt with these!

But we’re down to just over 18 days until Christmas and I’m starting to feel the crunch!

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Making More Progress

I had a pretty good chance to sew this weekend (no long periods of time but lots of an hour here, 90 minutes there) as well as a bit of time yesterday evening and I was able to make a lot of progress on my projects!

I’ve finished sewing together all of the HSTs that form the 15 rows of my quilt.  I also have all of the seams pressed (alternating directions with each row) so all I have left to do is sew the rows together and I’ll have completed my first quilt top!

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I also cut all of my charm squares for the Kate Spade Charm Swap I joined.  I turned this pretty stack of fabrics:

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Into these stacks of 56 charm squares each!  That’s a total of 224 charm squares!

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I’m so excited to get them sent off for the swap and see all of the pretty fabrics I get back.  It actually didn’t take nearly as long as I expected to cut all of the charm squares out thanks to the helpful tutorial on cutting charm squares from yardage that Elizabeth Hartman put together over at Oh, Frannson!.

I should have some time tonight to put some work into my Modern Trees quilt-along project.  I’ve been busy with other things and have fallen a little behind so hopefully a can catch up a bit!

Hope everyone is having a great week!

Still Spots in the Kate Spain Charm Swap!

Hope everyone had a good weekend!  Last week, I talked about the Kate Spain Charm Swap that I’m joining with Michele over at her blog, Quilts From My Crayon Box. The swap includes all of Kate Spain’s lines (except for the Christmas/holiday fabrics).

I wanted to let everyone know that there are still spots available in the swap so if you’d like to join in on the fun and get some beautiful fabrics for your next quilt, head on over to Michelle’s post and email her your information to join!  It’s all first come, first serve so once the spots fill up, you’re out of luck.  So head on over there now!

Joining the Kate Spain Charm Swap

I’m really excited to be joining my first swap!  Michele at Quilts From My Crayon Box is hosting a Kate Spain Charm Swap over on her blog.  The swap includes all of Kate Spain’s lines (except for the Christmas/holiday fabrics).

Basically, we’re all picking two Kate Spain fabrics, cutting them in to charm squares, and sending them to Michele.  She’ll divide them all up and them send everyone back 112 different charm squares from all the prints the participants have chosen.  I’ve actually signed up for 2 spots so I’ll be cutting charms from 4 fabrics and ultimately getting 224 charms back (two of each print).

These are the 4 prints I’ve chosen for my contributions to the swap:

Fabrics for SwapI’ll be honest, as a new quilter, I don’t know a whole lot about all the different fabric designers that are out there.  I don’t have a favorite designer or fabric line (although I have seen some that I am really drawn too).  There are just so many different options out there and I simply haven’t had enough time or experience to develop strong preferences yet.

But I do like Kate Spain’s newest line, Sunnyside and I think it would be fun to make a quilt that features just her fabrics.  The different lines seem like they will coordinate together really well.  It probably doesn’t hurt that Kate Spain also makes me think of some of my favorite purses (Kate Spade).  You wouldn’t even imagine how many times I accidentally typed “Spade” instead of “Spain” when writing this post!  Maybe developing some true favorites will come with time.

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While it will be nice to get a large variety of different coordinating charms for a Kate Spain quilt, I’m also really excited to have to opportunity to hopefully get to know some of the other bloggers who are participating in the swap a little better.  I think it will be nice to connect with some other like minded quilters as none of my friends locally quilt.

Have you ever participated in a swap with other bloggers?  What kind of swap was it and did you enjoy the experience?