Friday, July 18, 2014

Fabric and Photo Organizing

King of Photobombing 

When I wrote yesterday's post for Plum and June's Let's Get Acquainted blog hop, I realized my sewing room photos I had to use from my major  Re-Do last year were pretty outdated.    

Chase take the crown from Dottie
So I tried to get a current picture of my stash shelves and had to go into the backyard and shoot from outside an open window (cuz, yes my sewing room is that small).   Chase has always been the camera shy one and Dottie the photobomber - not anymore!
FQ & 1/2 yard-ish bundles
I had to go double deep on the shelf this time with my bundles and did a bit of regrouped by general color theme.  There's a ridiculous amount of fabric but it has stayed relatively sorted for as lazy as I tend to be about filing things back after my workshops and sew days.

Freedom from Clutter

The Ugly Truth - Out of Control
Even though I knew it had to get worse before it got better - ugh, stepping over and around this mess as I cleaned up was pretty bad.  Bags of bags and buckets of who knows what!  It's not done yet but it resembles hoarding a bit less.
No space for this cool container - Sad Face
My Sewing Room is one big WIP and deciding what gets to stay and what needs to go is SUPER difficult for me - but I'm committed to making an effort even if it means ditching my "Flat and Happy" yellow library card cabinet.
My New way of storing strip scraps
Considering I downscaled my stash and scraps thanks to the recent Yard Sale and Flea Market put on by my two local guilds I'm feeling a little more in control.  The big push came during my long 4th of July weekend when I decided to declare Freedom from Clutter.
The old way of storing scraps
I'm also hoping to participate this year in the Where I Sew link up at Pink Chalk Fabrics.  It's so much fun to nose around other people's space don't you think? Wish me luck getting the place camera ready.

Photo Organizing

If nearly three thousand pictures in my flickr pool seems extreme, it's because I also upload photos from our MQG guild meetings and special events plus some are private so i can store them for my own reference.  
Flickr Albums
There's a bit of clutter and chaos in my virtual world too.  I've tried really hard to make some sense of them by creating albums, including monthly and yearly projects, but maintaining them isn't really my forte.  Any advise on keeping on top of things?

Down to the Wire

Linking up to Finish it up Friday has been absent for quite some time but tonight I pulled it off with the completion of my Michael miller mqg challenge. 
Tomorrow in the light of day I'll get a better picture on a background less distracting than my bed so I can post it on the MQG Community site.  Linking up to Finish It Up Friday with Amanda Jean at Crazy Mom Quilts.

I'm the Caboose 

It's been wonderful to have so many new visitors to my blog and all the comments make my day.

Be sure to visit the 2014 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop.  Beth has a master list of links to make it easy on you.   You'll find me at the very very bottom - Yup - last but not least! 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Let's Get Acquainted - It's My Turn on the Blog Hop

Plum and June

Welcome to my stop on The 2014 New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop at Plum and June.  Thank you Beth for including me in this an amazing series.  Let's Get Acquainted!

Hi There!  I'm Karen, flickr and IG known as CapitolaQuilter - because I live in Capitola, California.  It use to read: capitolaquilter and was constantly mistaken for "Capitol A Quilter" so rather than rename myself I opted for this fix and it seems to have done the trick.   

Hubby and I celebrate our 31st wedding anniversary this month - more than many readers have been alive , I know.  
Celebrating my 50th Birthday
We have two grown sons and an adorable granddaughter.  She's featured often on the blog posing on many different quilts.   
My Sweet Baby Grandgirl on Mod Mosaic (aka Catalyst)
They've gotten much more use than ever before although she now crawls right off them. 
Always underfoot in my sewing room and frequently photobombing are our German Shorthair Pointers who we rescued 12 years ago.
Chase - Step on Over
Dottie - The Photo Bomber
Although my mom never quilted, she did sew while I was growing up and taught me how at a young age.  I use to sew my own clothes and made my boys some outfits but nothing too much recently.
Me in my Mom-Made Dress 
Before attending Sewing Summit in 2012, I decided it was only fitting to start a blog.  I've added an About Me Page with a bit more of my backstory.

All Together Now

 Collaborative projects and social sewing are among my favorite things to do.  

SBAMQG 31 Quilts in 31 Days Charity Drive
Pup Art Donation Quilt in Capitola Village
My First Quilt Retreat 

A Moving Target

My design style is evolving but I can say with certainty that I love to work from my stash and incorporate scrappiness.   Here are a few of my favorite quilts (including my latest finished top) to prove I can also be matchy-matchy.

Chain+Link top just completed
Finished and entered into Blogger's Quilt Festivals where you can read all about them are CatalystRing Around the Briar Rosies, Old Italian Block, Giant x-Plus, and Tassels.
Ring Around the Briar Rosies
The melding of traditional with modern elements appeals to me.
My most Pinned photo 
There's a pretty big span of projects over the years.  Since I've been sewing longer than blogging and still like my old ones, I included a Quilts & Creations and a Pre-Blog tab too.  


Happy When I'm Scrappy-AreYou?

Old Italian Block Wedding Quilt
I'm not a purest or a perfectionist. Mixing batiks, traditional and modern fabrics is all good in my book.
Bordered Diamonds
Block swaps and Bees have given me cherished memories and awesome quilts for my bed.
Giant x-plus top
Not many, but I've written a few Tutorials.  They're harder to make than I thought !
Tassels Detail
It's a bit ironic that my Polaroid Chain Pieced attracts more traffic to my blog than anything else and yet I've never gotten around to making anything with my swap blocks.
My first Tutorial and Most popular one

Attitude and Approach

Double Bar Supernova Bee blocks
Another thing I like to do is give a pattern a bit of a twist to make it my own like this 12 1/2" variation of Lee's Supernova block (how to) I adore pure Improv.
Improv Bee Block
When I free motion quilt I have the same take it as it comes attitude.  It's a task that takes the right frame of mind which can be difficult yet rewarding.  Let go and go for it. 
FMQ 2012 QuiltCon Charity quilt

My Latest Detour

#greekpluspussquilt
Guess what I did? Yup, dropped everything and jumped on board something new that  caught my eye  this weekend with these four test blocks sewn up #greekpluspussquilt for @r0ssie_fmq.  

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Tips and a Question for You

ADVISE: My Top Three
#1- Let yourself get distracting and sew what you want when you want and ditto for blogging.
#2- Trust your gut. Applies to quilting as well as life.
#3 Join Quilt Alongs, Bees, Swaps, Link Ups and attend Retreats and QuiltCon (are you going?  I am)

QUESTION for you - Are you happy when you're scrappy like me? I'd love to know and if you'd like to follow me, that's great too.

Follow on Bloglovin

You can find links to the entire line up HERE and the very useful series Advice and Tech Help for New Bloggers HERE.

Keep on hopping and get to know these fine ladies:

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Like Old Times and Something New

Chain+Link Top complete

Classic porch photo shoot 
Ever since my boys were little they have had the honor (or chore depending on who you ask) of holding up my quilt tops on the front porch as soon as I finished them.  I wrote about our tradition in this Duck and Cover post shortly after starting to blog. 

Well now that they're around less frequently the classic porch shot has become less of a regular thing - sad face. Today I got lucky and caught them both, just like old times.   It feels fabulous to have made progress on the Chain+Link wedding quilt for my niece.  Training my granddaughter early, she helped hubby with the billow of the breeze. 

Destash Second Chance

Pulling scraps from the bucket - pure entertainment
I also enlisted her assistance earlier this week with my prep for tomorrow nights annual flea market at our local guild.   A few weeks back our MQG had their very first yard sale and I purged quite a bit but realized after the fact that simply put: I have a ridiculous amount of scraps.  It's hard to part with potential especially ever since making the mod mosaic quilt seen behind her on the floor.  We had to move off onto the carpet to keep our visual sanity.

Pattern Testing

Put some pre-cuts to use and broke into my precious fat eighths of Lotta Jansdotter
I'm pretty new to IG but am finding the "drop everything" immediacy of it kind of appealing.  After diligently chugging along with my other projects lately, I think I earned the detour that my afternoon took when I saw a message from @r0ssie_fmq Rossie Hutchinson that said "Pattern Testers Needed". 
Auditioning possible puss corner square scraps
Her modern mash-up #greekpluspussquilt with it's scrappiness caught my eye and captured my heart.   Sewing on whatever-I-darn-well-feel-like has always been the way I roll (hence my last post confessing to zero completions for Finish along quarter 2).  
From design wall to next to my machine stacked on my big ruler
Not sure I will carve out more time than the 4 blocks in the works but it sure has been fun. She'll be releasing a pattern August 4th available on etsy and Craftsy. 

It's Almost My Turn

Plum and June 
The hop continues so be sure to visit Plum and June for week #3 links along with a fabric giveaway.  I'll be joining in during the next round so I hope to see you back to hear all about me and my blogging and quilting tips.  Until then - happy stitching!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

2014 Q3 FAL - following a shut out

I have been participating in FAL since January 2012 where I linked up 3 item. Since then I seem to repeatedly bite off more than I can chew linking up two or three times that with mixed results.

2014 Q2 was my low point- Yup. Zero out of ten - my first Shut Out that I recall. 

The group is fun and Katy at The Littlest Thistle very entertaining with her Good-Bad-and-Ugly Stats keeping us on our toes.  

Returning to my roots with 3 here they are:
2014 Q3 FAL
1. Chain+Link : all the parts for the blocks are done - it's an overdue June wedding quilt
2. Michael Miller A : the top is close but I want to make it a bit larger
3. Michael Miller B : spray basted and ready to quilt and bind 

Linking up to 2014 Q3 Goal Setting Party - hope you will too.

The other revelation is that I need to improve my blog tags for searching because I couldn't find my 2012 results post.   I know that they all got finished so I guess that's what matters.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Voile and Satin

You might laugh when I say my granddaughter NEEDED another quilt but she really did. 
I fell in love with these two voile prints from cloud9 Palos Verde when I saw them at Intrepid Thread and knew they would make the perfect project to try out my first satin binding. 


A simple zig zag did the trick. Catching both sides without any pins was just fine for the non-perfectionist in me.

The 40wt aurifil #5014 from my stash was meant to be. I call it scribble fmq and although I wasn't feeling in the zone, I'm pleased with the result. The bamboo batting gives a wonderful drape fresh from the dryer.  Yeah a new finish. Linking to Amanda Jean at Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Up Friday 

 Saturday Sew Day 


Circular Selfie
Last weekend our MQG had a sew day and I borrowed templates from Anne@ PlayCrafts.  She's been creating the most inspiring designs.  The QDAD  (Quilt Design A Day) group on FB is open to all and she's been doing a Friday post on her blog which is becoming a favorite read for me.
I've got a bit of a ruler/template obsession   My order is on the way from etsy shop bettycrockerass

 Sunday Sew Date

Double whammy - the very next day I went to my friends house for a Sewing Play Date with her and her sister.  I spent most -all- of my time taking inventory and prepping the missing parts for Chain+Link. Not glamorous yet necessary and surprisingly rewarding.   
Wedding Quilt and a FALQ2 Goal project

iPhone Posting

In the spirit of learning, trying new things and week 2 of the 2014 New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop at Plum and Junes, this post was generated from my iPhone.  After a bit of formatting clean up like and adding of links, it's definitely something I'll do again.

Another change I made was to make a tab for About Me.  While hopping around and visiting so many new ones, it's a feature that I appreciated seeing so it made sense to have it on my own. 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Clueless but Learning

Last post I mentioned that I'll be part of the 2014 New Quilt Blogger's Blog Hop at Plum and June next month.  In preparation, we're all busy helping one another improve our blogging experience by asking and answering questions within the group.  Having a forum with no judgement and no such thing as a dumb question is so gratifying and once in a while I actually know enough to assist.

The hop continues on with the second round of participants so be sure to check out all the links HERE and say "Hi" along the way.   PS: She's having a giveaway through the weekend too, so click quick!

Don't pick the Poppies 

You know how you don't know you're clueless until you find out you're clueless?  Well, that was me last week (twice)

First: I found out that for quite some time I've been hitting reply in gmail and chatting back a response to a comment on my blog - what's the catch?  They have been going to no-reply-comment@blogger.com because the email address wasn't visible until I clicked on details, ugh! Lesson#1: Look before you type.

Avatar that won't lead here - Don't pick the Poppies
Second: On occasion, I was leaving comments using a wordpress login that linked to a nonexistent blog rather than my real one.   A couple of years ago I tossed around the idea of moving from blogger and had created a blank blog with the same buddy icon so when I wrote a comment and my face showed up - it looked exactly the same to me!  I've updated the wordpress avitar so I can distinguish it and not make that mistake again. Lesson #2 What you see isn't always what you get.

Clothes for Baby



 In sewing news, I picked up a couple of patterns for cheap and am going to give them a try.  There are a ton of cute, free tutorials online but I'm lazy to tape together the parts off my printer.  My baby grand girl is now 9 months old (gasp) and growing bigger every day.  Starting with an easy summer outfit seemed smart and who can resist ruffled bloomers?!