Scattered Wheat

Tis the season of projects we can't share on our blogs. The afghan is out of the bag, but there are two more endeavors in the making. I'm really excited about them and how they are coming together, but enough of hints! I still remember my best friend Haley looking me in the eye my senior year during jewelry class and saying, "There's something I can't tell you." Gah! Well then don't. Because now I REALLY REALLY want to know!!

minimalist modern buckwheat quilt | Lovely and Enough

This project is not a secret, though! It began a couple summers ago as I forayed into modern twists on traditional blocks. I even quilted it back then. The binding just took another year and a half coming. Ha! Can anyone relate?

Now that it's done, it's hanging right in front of my desk at school. It is the first piece of artwork up, and the zen feel helps me keep going when my literature searches feel fruitless. That and calls to my PhD mom. (Thanks, Mom.)

I've been drooling over a couple new quilters lately. Tara's gorgeous style, hipster beanies, and classic quilts over at Rad and Happy have got me dreaming up new projects. And Lindsay Stead's impeccable taste and reserve in modern and heirloom quilt design make me want to throw out all my prints and work purely with solid duos. With them in mind, I've returned to some of my more minimalist projects, and that's where I'm heading next.

Do you have any secret holiday projects? I promise if you tell me, I can keep a secret. The lucky person receiving your gift isn't likely to read the comments on my blog either! This is a safe place. Get it off your chest.

minimalist modern buckwheat quilt | Lovely and Enough

minimalist modern buckwheat quilt | Lovely and Enough

minimalist modern buckwheat quilt | Lovely and Enough

minimalist modern buckwheat quilt | Lovely and Enough

minimalist modern buckwheat quilt | Lovely and Enough

minimalist modern buckwheat quilt | Lovely and Enough

If you're looking for finished project inspiration to keep you sewing as Christmas rapidly approaches, you can find more with Finish it up Friday over at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Variations on a Bouquet of Hydrangeas

Do you ever fall back in love with a project? It can be a work-in-progress that you pull out again or a finished project that resurfaces several months later. It happens to me a lot. Nostalgia and sentimentality come easily to me, the little rising feeling in your chest when you see a picture of a lovely vacation moment or a finished quilt in its new home or a small adorable grey kitten. (Yeah, I've been kind of wanting one of those lately. It could tiptoe across my keyboard while I blogged and curl up its soft little body in my lap. I'm getting that feeling now just thinking about it. I digress.)

printed mint and citron hydrangea fabric by Lovely and Enough

I realized, as I finish up quilts and prep to open my shop, that I never shared a finished quilt from this summer. And then when I was looking at the photos, I got all nostalgic over it. It is the third incarnation of my Variations on a Bouquet of Tulips quilt. Seeing the progression of colors and quilting from one to the next is so fun, so I am going to share it with you!

buckwheat farmer's wife quilt block in light grey and citron by Lovely and Enough

First came the six-inch buckwheat block for my Farmer's Wife Quilt. Next my senior show quilt, Variations on a Bouquet of Tulips. Third, the duplicate senior show sale but with light grey on the side triangles instead of low volume white, Variations on Variations on a Bouquet of Tulips. (Yeah, if you read my post about naming quilts last weekend, that one's a bit of a mouthful.) And lastly, all new colors and some new quilting, Variations on a Bouquet of Hydrangeas.

classic and modern quilt in citron, dark grey, and mint by Lovely and Enough

I have received many bouquets of hydrangeas in the past year, each one with its own special giver and expression of love. Hydrangeas encompass the network of people spread across the country that come together to love and support me; my sister and Mom, my friend Susie, my boyfriend Brent. From designing fabrics to my farmer's wife quilt and blog beginnings to opening my shop in the coming weeks, I couldn't do it without you. Thank you all dearly. This post and quilt go out to you!

hydrangeas in black and white

Linking up to Finish it up Friday over at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Fresh Starts II

screen printed modern quilt in citron, mint, and grey | by Lovely and Enough

How does one name a quilt? I was brainstorming (the collective I that includes Brent [boyfriend], Taylor [sister], and other text-support [Mom]) and came up with some I really loved, but suddenly, out of nowhere, the name game became a thought-provoking dilemma.

I love "the Tate" and "the James" as if I am naming the pattern. Then anything after it could be "the Tate II" and "the Tate IV" or "the James VI." But those means nothing to anyone but me. Tate is my new roommate's last name. James is the name of the library on campus I inhabit. See?

I also like "Summer Sails" or "Fresh Starts." These have more immediate narrative when you hear them. They are names you might post in a gallery. Also a tad more whimsical, these names shift the focus from pure design to story.

Gahh I'm so indecisive; I should just give it a number: minutes worked on it plus date finished, 125610152014.

I realized mid-dilemma that this one is easy. It is called Fresh Starts II. Its first incarnation was already christened, making my decision simple. And the quilt is drenched in fresh starts, moving to Raleigh, beginning grad school, a new relationship, and an exciting business venture. Fresh Starts II it is.

But how do you name your quilts? Your projects? Your products? Your art?
What's in a name? I'm all ears.

screen printed modern quilt in citron, mint, and grey | by Lovely and Enough

screen printed modern quilt in citron, mint, and grey | by Lovely and Enough

screen printed modern quilt in citron, mint, and grey | by Lovely and Enough
Yep, it's sideways. But what's really the top anyways?

My photo-snatching partner-in-crime and I peering through the Contemporary Art Museum window around front. 

And I'm linking up to next week's Finish it up Friday because I couldn't be my lazy bum to post before last week's. Better late than never! Check out the flimsy finish and quilted progress too!

Plus for a Finish

Finished Modern Plus Quilt
Mission three into the James Hunt Library was a success. Laden down with newly finished quilt and iron, I confidently climbed to the fifth floor. Brent was such a gentleman to let me disrupt our weekend for a library photo shoot. He even engineered an invisible tape method to hang the heavy quilt. What a guy.

We snapped over seventy photos that gorgeous Sunday morning, and I had to FaceTime my mom just now to decide between them all. Here are our four favorites. The quilt was designed for my living room wall and hangs comfortably above the couch. It fills the room with a balance of softness and presence, and if it wasn't for the complete lack of natural light in here, I would show you just how classy and homey it feels.

The quilt is also brimming with imperfections. Wobbly seams, batting peeking out at the edges, binding stitches that went through, and plusses that don't align. That's what shows it's handmade. Some of my favorite vintage quilts have worn-through holes and faded patches, missed corners and uneven quilting. The imperfections bring it above factory-grade quilts; they make it perfect. I've been thinking of starting a linkup for Perfect Imperfections, the happy accidents, the frustrating mistakes. What do you think? Would enjoy linking up to that?

finished quilt on table

modern plus quilt with citron pop

modern plus quilt with citron pop, lovely and enough

modern plus quilt with fun citron pop in binding, lovely and enough

Mission one and the early stages of this quilt can be found here, pre-binding. And I'm so excited to link up to Finish-it-up-Friday over at CrazyMomQuilts and Show Off Saturday at SewCanShe. (Links forthcoming when those days arrive.)

Chai and Binding

Our screened-in porch is one of my happy places, calm and breezy with the voices of the woods. This morning I get to finish hand-stitching a binding out here with a mug of chai latte. Have you ever bought chai concentrate? It's practically the cost of one chai latte and makes almost ten cups! Bliss in a carton.

Yesterday I finished my Lone Star to the tune of Gossip Girl. I may or may not have finished six episodes of season two as well. Watching the series for the second time lends new hilarious insights. Serena asks to meet with GossipGirl in the season finale and he (or she...) actually shows up but you don't realize it...ha! I digress.

Sunday I had a slow and steady afternoon of quilting a baby quilt on which my mum and I collaborated. I'm excited to show y'all once the binding is attached. All in all a great week so far. I do seem to be accidentally sewing several quilts in the same color scheme, but oh well. The heart picks fabrics as it may.