Friday, June 26, 2015

La Passacaglia: Part 2


If you have been following me on Instagram, you've probably seen the long term project that I've been working on lately. It's a crazy EPP quilt called the La Passacaglia

The pattern can be found in the Millefiori Quilts book (#1) by Willyne Hammerstein. I picked up a copy of the book as well as the paper pieces and acrylic templates at PaperPieces.com. 
It's definitely a bit of an investment to do this project, but it's also SUPER fun and addictive. I love coming up with new color combos, fabric combos, and fussy cutting just about every single piece. 
I am just making each cog as I go along and not really giving much thought to the placement or end result, but I am having fun and love each cog that I create so I am crossing my fingers that in the end it will all work out and be a one of a kind quilt that I can treasure forever. 

 It has been so much fun to start seeing the progress once I have sewn the cogs together! It is starting to actually feel like a quilt instead of just shapes. 


I found a little organizer that is perfect for keeping all of my paper pieces in order. It's called the Divided Case by Sterilite. I found mine at Target, but have heard that they are hard to come by, so if you see one- snatch it up! Here is a link to the only case I can find online. (it's slightly different colors but looks like its the same thing as what I have.)

I plan to do a post soon with progress pictures of the full quilt (what I have done so far) and would be happy to answer any questions that anyone has- so just leave a comment below and I will answer it in my post. If you need an answer sooner, leave your email and I will answer you directly. 

I hope y'all have a wonderful weekend!
Happy Sewing!
xoxo, Ashley

Monday, June 22, 2015

Folk Song Fabric Giveaway from FabricCadabra

{THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED}

Can you believe that June is almost over?! I swear that time moves 3 times as fast in the summer months- don't you think? Probably because we're all busy having too much fun during the summer! ;)

I thought it would be fun to do a giveaway to celebrate summer and I couldn't think of a fabric line that screams summer more than Anna Maria Horner's Folk Song line. Those colors... seriously! 

My new sponsor FabricCadabra has so generously offered to send a fat quarter bundle of the color way of your choice to one lucky reader! 

The winner will have the choice of either the Dawn Palette, which is full of warm yellows, and pinks/reds...
or the Dusk Palette, which is full of cooler blues, and greens. 
I have each of these fabrics in my stash and the photos just don't even do them justice! {But I feel that is just a given with anything by Anna Maria Horner! She's my fav!}

I will randomly select one winner on Monday June 29th and notify them by email.

To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment letting me know which bundle you would choose. (your answer in no way effects the outcome of the giveaway)
 Optional bonus entries:
Just make sure to leave a separate comment for each entry. (if you do all three, leave three comments.)

{THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED}

Congrats to
wow, that is hard to choose! i really like the dawn palette, though! 

Friday, May 29, 2015

Happy Mail Mini Quilt Swap

One of my very favorite things to make and receive are mini quilts. I love them because they are the perfect way to try out a block or two of a quilt you've been wanting to make, or the perfect size to design something intricate that you may not want or have the time to do in a full size quilt.
I joined a couple mini quilt swaps this year and have had such a fun time with them that I decided to host my own. I wanted it to be small, just a handful of friends. I named it the Happy Mail Mini Quilt Swap, because who doesn’t love a bit of happy mail?!

It has been so much fun! Big swaps are fun too of course, but this one was extra fun because I knew everyone involved. 
Once the partners were divvied up, I found out that the friend I would be creating a mini for was Ayumi of Pink Penguin. Talk about intimidating! She is incredible! She just came out with her very own fabric line! (Lighthearted Fabric) Ayumi is one of the very first "sewing bloggers" that I started following when I started blogging/sewing. She is sooo talented, so to say I was nervous to create something for her, is an understatement! 

As I was planning the mini I wanted to create, I remembered a picture that I came across 2 years ago on Pinterest. At the time, the picture that I had pinned didn't have a link. So with the help of friends on IG, I discovered that it was a picture from the Japanese magazine Couturier. I don't speak Japanese, so I am not sure what is said about the quilt, but I decided to make something that was inspired by this image. 
I started by making 5 inch quilt blocks. (I made roughly 16 but only 12 made the cut.)  After each block was made, I took the block, batting, and 5 inch square of backing fabric and put them right sides together and then stitched around the entire block leaving a 3 inch opening to turn the block right side out. Then I whip stitched the opening closed (I know I should have done a ladder stitch, but for some reason I just can't get the hang of it.) Then I hand quilted each block with 12 wt white aurifil thread. 
Essentially I had 12 coasters when I was all done. 
I arranged them in the order I wanted and then it was time to stitch them together. I took my blocks, starting with 2, and put them right sides together and whip stitched the edge. If you have done EPP, you will probably know what I am talking about. (the trick was just catching the front quilt block fabric- I'll explain later.) Once the two were connected, I opened up the blocks and added the next one on. I created 3 rows of 4. Once the rows were assembled, I put the rows right sides together and did the same thing all along the edges to connect them- again, just catching the front fabric with my needle and taking small, tight whip stitches. Once the rows were all sewn together, I laid the quilt face down on a table and carefully whip stitched the back of the blocks together.  
This probably doesn't make a lot of sense as you are reading it, but the reason I did it this way was because just like in EPP, you don't want your stitches to be visible from the front when you are looking at it. So with piecing the blocks together just like EPP, the stitches aren't visible- the only difference is the back wouldn't be "hidden" with a quilt back, so that is why the whip stitches were necessary on the back, they kinda "closed up" the seams and hid my first whip stitches in between the blocks. 
In the end, this quilt is pretty much all hand pieced, with the exception of using my machine to sew around the edges of the blocks as mentioned before. 
I had so much fun creating the blocks. Most of them were hand appliqued, but all of them were of my own design. If I wanted to create something- like this pink penguin (a nod to Ayumi's blog), I just found a picture online to eyeball and drew out my pieces by hand to create my tiny patchwork. The blocks aren't perfect by any means, but overall I love the effect of the quilt. 

I hope my directions make sense! Be sure to let me know if you have any questions and I will be sure to answer them! 

Hope y'all have a wonderful week! 
Happy Sewing!
xoxo, Ashley

Friday, May 1, 2015

Seeing Rainbow

{photo by me}

I can not believe it is May already! April and March have been such a whirlwind for me! I had family come into town to visit for a couple weeks- which meant road trips all over the South, sightseeing and showing everyone a good time. Then we found out that we will be moving back to the midwest at the end of the summer, which somehow crazily resulted in a spur of the moment "book a flight the day before the trip" house hunting excursion last weekend- which was a lot of fun but also somewhat stressful and tiring! ;) Plus, regular everyday living has been busy busy busy- but I'm not complaining! Life is good and I am so blessed.

  I've been sewing off and on through it all, but everything is still in a WIP {work in progress} state so I haven't had much to show here on the good ole blog....... Soooooo.... I decided that I better do a "What I've been working on lately" post for those of you that aren't cruising around on Instagram seeing the progress.  

Over the last few weeks I've done a bit of work on my La Passacagliasewed a Quilted Suitcase for quilt market, but the biggest things that I have been working on as of late are a couple mini quilt swaps- one that I am doing with a few close IG friends, and the other is the #cottonandsteelminiquiltswap. Both are pushing me to create something that will be loved and appreciated by the recipients.
{Rainbow is a improvised version of the Pickle Dish mini I made, the January block is scaled down to 50% which makes it roughly 6" square. }

Here is the progress on my Cotton + Steel mini. It is looking like it will be a sampler mini quilt of sorts, but I still have a few more elements to add and then will start to figure out placements of each block and whatnot. The colors are so vibrant and I love each of the blocks! I'm gonna have a hard time sending this mini to it's new home! 

I hope y'all have a wonderful weekend!
Happy Sewing!
xoxo, Ashley

Monday, April 20, 2015

Quilting for Twins

Last month I started a fun project- quilting for TWINS! (But not my own! ;)
My sweet cousin is pregnant with twins... A boy and a girl. As soon as I heard the news, I started day dreaming about a fun color palette for coordinating quilts to make for her and the babies.
I wanted something that would coordinate, but not be matchy-matchy. I started pulling fabrics from my stash and the fabric that kept jumping out to me was Wild and Free Folk Plaid by Maureen Cracknell. I felt like it would be the perfect fabric to tie both quilts together. 

So first I pulled fabric for the baby girl quilt. I started with the plaid, and then added some peachy fabrics as well as some mustard. Some of my favorites were the Wild and Free Arrows, Arizona Desert Blanket by April Rhodes, Winged Plumage by Bonnie Christine, & Domino Dot in Geranium by Violet Craft.


I really love the way the colors came together. I think this combo is so dreamy- plus since most of them are Art Gallery fabrics, they have the softest hand and it is just an incredibly snuggly quilt!
After I finished the baby girl quit, I pulled fabrics for the baby boy quilt. Again, I used the Wild and Free Folk Plaid as the fabric to tie both quilts together. Then I added some Cotton + Steel Basics from the blue and mint color ways, Essex Dyed Linen in BlackHello Bear Buck Forrest by Bonnie Christine, and some black and white fabrics pulled from my stash. (I used the folk plaid for backing on this one and I am going to have to do it again! It was the perfect quilt back.) I tried to do a new and fresh color combo that I hadn't really seen before, and I think its perfect for a little boy. 
The quilts have made it to their destination and are anxiously awaiting for the babies to arrive and snuggle with them! Can't wait!

Thanks for stopping by my blog! Hope y'all have a happy week!
xoxo, Ashley

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Zip Up Makeup Case | Ribbon Blog Tour

 I'm excited to be a part of the Renaissance Ribbons Tour for Going Home to Roost. The tour just started and will last 3 weeks, with a new project everyday featuring Bonnie Christine's beautiful ribbons. Today I get to share the project that I designed using the gorgeous fabrics and ribbon that Bonnie sent me.  
Be sure to check out the yesterdays project by Audrey of Skirt Fixation and the tour will continue tomorrow with Sarah of Smiles Too Loudly.

I jumped at the chance to be a part of the tour because I have never worked with any Renaissance Ribbons and I am a total fan of anything designed by Bonnie Christine! 
{Have you seen the butterflies from her Winged fabric line that I am using in my La Passacaglia quilt? Gorgeous!}
I knew that this would be the perfect fabric and ribbon to make a case for my daughters to keep their pretend make up in. They love doing makeovers and are fascinated by momma's makeup case, so I knew they would love a case of their own. 
This make up was one of the very first projects I ever shared on the blog! It's held up for 4 years of playing and it's still going strong! Here is a link to the tutorial if you are interested in creating makeup for your little princess that doesn't make a mess! Just ignore the horrible pictures! ha ha I was totally new to blogging! ;)
 I chose to use the Ivory on Gray Nesting Blooms ribbon paired with a cute print from Bonnie's Hello Bear line and a print from her Winged line- along with a couple scraps from my stash to  create my patchwork for the front of the pouch. I love the colors! Plus the prints are manufactured by Art Gallery and have the most beautiful hand to them! 
{The ribbons are available for purchase directly from Renaissance Ribbons, or A Stitch in Time.}
 I just kinda made up my pattern as I went along. 
For the inside, I made one zipper pouch to keep their makeup in, and the other side of the case has a pocket to keep brushes in. 
(I kinda recreated a different version of my Field Study make up case for the pocket to hold the brushes.)
What makes it perfect, is that it zips together to keep everything contained and the handle makes it easy to carry around. 

  I used the ribbon for the handle of the case (I top stitched it to a fabric strap) and also used it on the inside of the case to cover up the "raw" edge of a zipper so it had a neatly finished look. The ribbon was great to work with. It is woven jacquard ribbon so the underside is "thready", which is why I had to sew it to something to use for the handle, but I can think of a lot of projects that the ribbon would work beautifully in! The pictures don't even do them justice! So detailed and vibrant.
My girls absolutely love it! I was their first "make over client" and I see many pretend make overs in my future! So fun to have "girly girls"! :)


Thanks for stopping by my blog!
Happy Sewing!
xoxo, Ashley

Monday, March 2, 2015

Behind the Scenes | Plus a Giveaway

Are y'all on Instagram? It is my very favorite way to share the "behind the scenes" of all of the projects I am working on. 
I don't do a lot of WIP {work in progress} posts here on the blog, so Instagram is the place to see everything in it's "work in progress" state! It's so easy to snap a photo on my phone while sitting at my machine, or paper piecing in the car, etc and share it within seconds. 
{Trying my hand at paper piecing/appliqueing clamshells... Mine are totally inspired by the amazing Mary Dugan of Molly Flanders} 
It's also my very favorite way to stay in touch with all my sewing and blogging friends- plus make new friends! I love that it's so easy to click "like" or comment on a photo. While comments are few and far between on my blog these days, it is so refreshing to get feedback on a project I'm working on, or get answers to a sewing question I have. {I know you're still reading, and I totally get that it's kinda a pain to log into your account to post a comment on Blogger! No worries! But those of you that are still commenting on my blog have a special place in my heart! You are all the sweetest!}
 {Ever and always working on my La Passacaglia Quilt... You can find all of my progress under my hashtag #mbdcbnpassacaglia}
 {these star points are the tiniest and most tedious part of the La Passacaglia process, but when they are put together, they are so fantastic!}
I have heard from some readers that they are hesitant to get in Instagram, or that they are on there and don't like it. My only advise for you is to give it another chance. I really love it so much! I am inspired daily by the amazingly talented people I follow, plus I also find it so easy to search for inspiration within the hashtags. 
For instance, if I want to see anything made with fabric by Anna Maria Horner {my very favorite fabric designer}- I just look up the hashtag #annamariahorner, and over 6000 pictures pop up. {I have to be careful to manage my time, or I could loose myself for hours there!}
 {Baby girl quilt for a friend. Made of mostly Art Gallery fabrics... So soft! Coming soon to the blog.}
Another reason I love Instagram, is that it is a great way for me to let y'all know when I have a new blog post up. The link to my blog is found in my profile so it's always an easy way to click over and read posts on my blog.  
 I hope that you'll come play along on Instagram! I love talking with y'all there and seeing your creations too! Be sure to tag me if you ever make something using a tutorial you find on my blog! I love seeing your versions of projects I've made!
You can find me here: @crafterbynight.

***GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED***
Last but not least, Fort Worth Fabric Studio is doing a giveaway today for one lucky reader! 
$50 Gift Certificate to their shop!!
What better way to brighten your day, then to go on a shopping spree for fabric online!?! 
I think if I had $50 to spend there, I would definitely get a bundle of Milk Sugar & Flower!

All you have to do to enter the giveaway is head over to browse the Fort Worth Fabric Studio website and then come back here and leave a comment letting me know what you would get if you won the giveaway!
{your answer will in no way effect the result of the giveaway- just fun to hear what y'all have your eye on!}
JUST BE SURE TO LEAVE YOUR EMAIL IN YOUR COMMENT SO THAT I CAN CONTACT YOU IF YOU WIN!

One person will be chosen at random and notified via email on Friday March 6th. 

THE WINNER IS:
HI, I'd select "Indygo Nature", a beautiful collection!Thanks for sharing your neat Blog+a great Giveaway too!Happy Stitching!



Have a happy Monday everyone!
xoxo, Ashley