Family Time

Home again home again! Jiggity jig!

I am home with the family. We are contentedly sitting in the living room after a day of Christmas shopping at the mall and considering going out to get our Christmas tree. Dad and Taylor were a very willing quilt rack this afternoon, so I have some lovely full pictures of the Giant Starburst Quilt Top. I can't quite decide how to quilt it, but I am going to add a thick white border. If you have any nifty ideas for quilting other than basic straight-line white quilting, I am all ears.

Starburst Top

I'm embarrassed to say that it's been almost two weeks since my last post. I guess photographing the cut pieces of my starburst quilt just wasn't really inspiring me. Not to mention, the sun goes down around four o'clock. Talk about no time for natural lighting. Anyways, with a miraculous finals week that includes no actual finals, simply a three-page paper, I am walking on air with a little time to quilt. Social events have been keeping me busy, though, from breakfasts to coffee dates to birthday dinners. Last night my girlfriends and I commemorated a 22nd birthday with a trip to Denny's at midnight dressed up as hipsters to make fun of our exes. Feelin' twenty-two-oo ;) Today, the guilt really set in on being away from the blog as the last two items on my semester checklist read "blog" and "paper." I set aside the paper (who likes writing papers anyways) and pounded out the final eight seams of the quilt top. Ta da! Finished quilt top! With fifteen minutes of light left before sundown, I photographed it on the awesome new/old ladder that my mom found for me at an estate sale. Now just one little paper between me and home. Next stop: Ann Arbor!

Giant Starburst Colors

I picked the fabric! After eating lunch with my favorite little sister (and my only one), we swung by Pink Castle to check out their solids. She supported me through my indecision when faced with a big intimidating wall of Modas and Michael Millers and Monalunas and stalwartly held heaping piles of bolts. She even stuck it out when I accidentally conked her in the nose with a particularly heavy bolt. What did I say, she's my favorite :) We picked out a set of eight golds and mints and greens, but when I got home I started pulling out a couple at a time and putting them together. Simpler seemed better, so I picked a modern four. Two darks and two lights. The darks will be the flying geese blocks on the sides and the lights will be the arrows in the corners of the giant starburst. Then the background will be Michael Miller off-white.

The next day I hung out with my mom in the studio cutting out squares while she planned out the exact construction of the plus quilt she's making me. I'm so excited for the quilt it's insane. It will be made from the most luxurious citron cotton that I picked up for £18/meter at Bacci Tessuti in Florence this past summer with a single plus of my citron hortensia fabric that I also printed in Florence this summer. I cannot wait for it to be done. We finished the afternoon laying out the most adorable twin-size quilt of green, red, aqua, and grey plusses on a grey background. It was spontaneous and fun, made out of leftover pre-cut squares from a quilt my grandma made. I am very jealous of the family that will receive it at the Safe House down the road. I guess this just means I may have to make one for myself, so I should probably get to work piecing this giant starburst first!

Up to My Neck

Mid-November hits and the books and leaves pile up to my neck. Every year it catches me a tad off guard. I grow antsy for Thanksgiving Break. My sewing takes a backseat to reading books and writing papers. Coffeeshops become my homes away from home. On the phone today with my mom, she pointed out that my November posts from last year sound very similar to this. In fact this one could have been written this past weekend, and I think I'd like to steal that prayer and repurpose it for this week.

"Lord, open and soften my heart today. You have been so generous toward me. May I give out of all I have and even out of what I think I don't have. Take my time. Take my money. Take my power. Take my powerlessness. Take my weariness. Take my fears. Take my tongue. Take my questions. All that I have and all that I don't have are in your hands. Amen."

Nevertheless, I did sneak in a teensy bit of sewing on Sunday afternoon and tried out machine binding for the first time. Success!

{Check out the beginnings of this project here and here}

Leaves, Tea, and Wool Socks

Y'know when sometimes you finish your morning plans and then you hit your afternoon plans and by the time you get to your evening plans, you just want to crawl into your PJs and not have to smile and socialize anymore? That was yesterday. After a beautiful morning full of laughter and washing windows with my friend Amanda during our community workday and then a gorgeous afternoon of raking leaves for a gentleman preparing to sell his mother's house, I was exhausted. If you know me, passing up playing board games with my friends does not happen very often, but last night, it happened. I peeled off my layers and snuggled into sweats to spend a quiet evening with myself. After writing out my mom's favorite passion cake recipe for my friends who requested it last week, I pulled out the starburst mini to finish up the quilting. Three episodes of TV, a bowl of cereal, and the end of a Michigan football game later, I crawled into bed with a nicely trimmed mini quilt staring back at me from my desk. Mm the cozy feeling of quiet success.

Today, with my quilting mostly done for the weekend, I am working on grad school applications. As recompense for spending my Sunday on school work, I am enjoying a warm cup of chai tea next to a crackling fire. The sun is shining outside, and I put on my favorite wool socks with leggings and a soft sweater. Caribou Coffee is humming with the relaxed traditions of post-church coffee. And I am content. Right now, this is exactly where I'm supposed to be.

Mini Starburst

Fall colors are here! Bright citrons, burning reds, and crisp golds. The streets are overflowing with lively, crunchy color, and it is a joy to sit at my desk and enjoy the view of our neighbors. Their lot is a jungle, packed with trees, shrubs, and burgeoning plants, making for a gorgeous conflagration of color. In light of the inspiring bursts of colors outside and an impending quilt-a-long, I made up a mini Starburst Quilt with some of my freshly printed bunting fabric. Yep! Two of those coral corners came straight from my printing table to the rotary cutter. So fun and rewarding. This week's task (outside of getting screens shot for the new fabric design and beginning test prints) is to quilt and bind it before the real-size quilt-a-long begins November 18th. I am so excited; I can hardly wait!