Blue Bird Sews Fat Quarter Bundle

What a fun challenge Laura at Quokka Quilts has given us! To create a 15 pack of fat quarters from the Fat Quarter Shop's huge selection...that is a tall order with so many beautiful fabrics to choose from. I wanted to bring fresh colors and pops of the unexpected...I hope I achieved just that. Turquoise, orange, grey and a little bit of lavender. I hope you are inspired by it!

These are the fabrics I choose to create my dream "blogger's choice FQ bundle"

1. Soul Blossoms Organic Rose Peacock Feathers
2. Stitch Organic Dark Teal Tonal Patchwork 
3. Anchors Away Orange Diamond Ikat 
4. Kaffe Fassett Collective Pastel Map 
5. Morning Tides Purple Diamond Leaves 
6. Going Coastal Gray Sea Kelp
7. Lark Mandarin Floral Couture 
8. Goodnight Moon Orange Starry Night
9. Flora Turquoise Secret Windows
10. Ooh La La Coral Coeur De Fleurs
11. Weekend Clubhouse 2012 Linen Random Pencil Check
12. Kaffe Classics Purple Aboriginal Dot 
13. Michael Miller Venus Cotton Couture Solid
14. Free Spirit Designer Solids Salmon 
15. Free Spirit Designer Solids Jade

Whew, that was tough! Good luck to all the participants, an amazing prize awaits us - a half yard of each fabric selection in the winning bundle! Oh my!


Sew 2011

January 2011 I started Blue Bird Sews not knowing exactly where it would take me but knowing I wanted to join in this amazing sewing community. Since then I learned a lot about modern quilting & sewing in general but not nearly enough -- I am still hooked! I still want to create and learn and that's just what I plan to do in 2012.
I love looking back, and what better way than through a mosaic. It was hard to pick my favorite projects because there were so many. I got a little obsessed; okay a lot obsessed. I quilted over 15 quilts and made countless other smaller projects from pouches, to pillow shams, crayon rolls to wall hangings and a little bit of fun and frustration in between.

1. Comp Books, 2. Fall Tree Quilt, 3. Shrinking Squares set in black, 4. Not available, 5. Ribbon Rainbow, 6. Sewn Note cards , 7. Sexy Hexy Red Finish, 8. Baby J's, 9. Concrete Cabin, 10. Spring Flowers, 11. Eco-bag 12. Moda Shrinking Squares 13. Baby Quilts14. Retro Bento 15. Pincushions 16. Warm Cool Quilt Along Start

Top Five Projects:
Retro Bento: I loved working on this quilt...the fabrics and the pattern work so well together and even though the quilting broke Astrid 1 I was able to finish it up with Astrid 2. This quilt is staying on the couch.
Stashtacular: What a crazy month that was! So many tutorials and fabric swapping...great times with some great ladies. And it brought to life my commitment to no more mindless fabric buying which I am happy to say I pretty much stuck to for a whole 6 months. Lots of money saved and  lots of fabric used up.
Concrete Cabins: My first tutorial and first steps into modern quilting. I have plans in 2012 for making another one of these but with a different layout and color palette.
Grandma's Blue Sparkle Quilt: My first quilt on commission and what a beauty it turned out to be. Grandma loved it, I love it and even Quilt Story loved it enough to feature on their site for a day - what a thrill all around.
Long Arm Quilting: Learning to long arm was a rush and I am still a  newbie but it is so much fun and gratifying to take it in and paint with thread. Something I will be doing more of this next year.

I could go on about each project I did this year but it would take all day to write! But the best thing about this year is all of you...every comment I got made me smile. Every person who linked up with Eat, Grow, Sew made my day. And all the love comes straight through the internet and right to me. I love this and plan on coming through 2012 with even more projects....including my first full on pattern and a quilt this month from start to finish.
I'll be back with my goals for 2012 but until then enjoy your friends and family because they are the reason we sew! What were your highlights of 2011?


Child's Sewing Kit: What's Inside

One of my favorite little people loves crafting and sewing as much as I do. When she comes over we go to the basement and work on kitty blankets, coloring butterflies and cutting out pretty papers. She watches as I sew together the fabrics she picks out and we make patchwork pieces. For a while I had her convinced that the sewing machine works by magic voice commands: Sewing machine GO, sewing machine STOP, faster & slower. This year she started kindergarten and is turning six next month. It was time to introduce her to the sewing needle.

The kit is simple; I actually found all these supplies in my sewing room. We'll add more to it as her skills grow but this is what we started with.

Needle Book with Large Needles, a pouch for a threading helper and safety pins
Pincushion with pins
Seam ripper
Spools of thread
Fun notions: ribbon, ric-rack, needlepoint thread, lace
Jar of buttons and beads and what not to sew onto something
Stack of fabric scraps

I tucked all these things into an old cookie tin and they fit perfectly. When she opened it there was a look of surprise and puzzlement - like what do I do now. That is where the best part comes in; sewing  lessons. The first lesson was learning all the names of her new treasures, spool of thread, pin cushion, eye of the needle... We then threaded a needle, made a knot and sewed a straight line joining two  pieces together. I made this easy by drawing a straight line down both sides 1/4" away from the edge. She diligently followed the line and made a wonderful little patchwork piece. Next time she wants to tackle buttons!

This was such a fun way to spend time with a crazy smart little girl. Channeling that kid energy into a learned skill, she did so well I can hardly wait for our next lesson!

Here are some links that inspired my sewing  kit, and one embroidery with a non stick mat I want to try with her too!
Filth Wizardry: Sewing with a dollar store shelf liner
Toddler Friendly Sewing Kit
Chez Beeper Bebe: Child's sewing kit

I'll be linking up to all the Link Parties I Love so hop on over and join us!


Friday Inspiration: Oh, Christmas Tree....

1. CHRISTMAS TREE, 2. christmas tree, 3. christmas tree, 4. Me on Christmas Eve 1983, 5. christmas tree head, 6. my christmas tree, 7. A Charlie Brown-ish Christmas tree, 8. christmas tree oh christmas tree, 9. christmas tree 2006, 10. The christmas tree, 11. My Best Tree Ever 1985, 12. christmas tree spin, 13. My Family Tree 1983
I love me a Christmas Tree. You'll find the proof in this weeks photos; I'm in there as a little girl dwarfed by the trees of my childhood. This Sunday we go to collect our tree, probably at a near by lot where either a church, the Boy Scouts or some other community group is selling. We'll go out a chop a tree someday but not this year. This year we'll set up the tree and slowly decorate with lights and beads until Christmas Eve when Baby J goes to sleep and then Mom and Dad become elves and trim the tree, stack the presents underneath and wait for Christmas  morning. That look on my little boy's face is going to be priceless. That is what Christmas is about for me, the tradition, the magic, the love, the surprises. Merry Christmas!


Hedi Made A Shrinking Squares Quilt!

The best part about having a quilt blog is the sharing. Posting my quilt pics and other sewing projects gives me an outlet into this wonderful community of ladies who do the exact same thing! But something I didn't expect - is the sharing coming back at me. Recently I was sent this picture and a wonderful quilting friends story....

Hedi from Germany sent this photo of her Shrinking Squares Quilt which she made from my online tutorial! This is just about the coolest thing ever! Here is what Hedi says about her quilt:

Hello Kelly, I am Hedi from Germany. Someone on a German sewing homepage made a link to your block post and I saw the pattern for the Shrinking Squares Scrap Quilt. So I started my own and like to send you a picture as a thank you for sharing your pattern. I changed the size by adding 2 squares in each row and 2 rows in each size of the squares. It´s machine sewn and machine quilted. I used a Superior King Tut variegating thread.My finished size is about 52”X84” now. It´s going to be a gift for my best friend in Florida who got me into quilting a few years ago. I will see her in November when I fly over to Florida to celebrate Thanksgiving at her house. Thank you again for the idea and the pattern.

Isn't that smart of her to make it bigger. So simple to add a few more rows and columns and go up to a twin - more room for snuggling! I love the bright deep colors that pop against the black sashing. So cheerful without being girly or boyish. I'm sure it will fit right in with the tropics! I especially love the bright scrappy binding, what a great way to frame this quilt! Since sending me this quilt picture Hedi went to Florida and gave her quilt to a dear friend - who loved it - maybe she is using it right now!

If you'd like to make your own Shrinking Squares scrap quilt then pop on over to the tutorial it will be up and free to use as long as the internet keeps on ticking! And if you've got a project to share from one of my tutorials send it on over!


Friday Photo Inspiration: White Snow

1. Snow, 2. Snow in the Catalina Mountains - Arizona, 3. snow angel of saint paul, 4. City snow 3
It hardly snows here in Portland - even though the lows are in the 20's and the high's in the low 40's. So instead I dream about it and make due with our frosty white mornings.
I'm getting into the Christmas spirit, are you? Baby J and I hung stockings and a few lights around the living room. One of the radio stations switches from soft rock to soft Christmas tunes and we've been listening until Dad comes home. Tomorrow is the mecca of all handmade holiday bazaars called Crafty Wonderland. One day I'll have a little booth and join in the fun. Until then I take notes and spend a little cash.
What are your holiday plans?


How Bazaar: Holiday Edition

Hello there fellow crafters! I had such a great time selling at my first ever holiday bazaar!!!!!! My table was super cute, my wares were extra super cute, and I had an amazing turn out of family and friends come down to support me! It was worth every stitch and every anxious feeling I had...I can totally do this. I even have a few leads for next year and later this month I'll be doing it again at another bar in Portland - wooo-whooo!

Now the best part, a few pictures!
 Here the table, don't you love the banner! Thanks to my mom for all the silver platters, table cloths and most of the glass bowls!
 Here's the recycled crayons, everyone thought they were candy on first glance. There's the fabric covered comp books in the background and some sewn note cards. 
This pic is fuzzy but it shows the cuteness of it all and one of my fabric collages (haven't shared those on here yet, but maybe some day)

Thanks for checking out my table and sticking around while I got my act together for this bazaar! So happy I did it. Sometimes putting yourself out there is scary but this time it paid off in spades! 

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