Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Handmade Christmas


Hey there! As a Maker do you always want to give handmade gifts? I do. I want to give my family gifts that are well made and are meaningful. I want them to last for more than a weekend. This year I made 3 Overnight Duffel bags. This pattern is by Purl Soho and you can find it HERE. It is a great, simple pattern that lends itself well to making pieced sides or just quilting like I did. For these bags I loaded up my long arm with enough fabric for 4 bags, traced all the pattern pieces onto the white fabric (which is a heavy weight cotton from Ikea) and quilted them piece by piece with white thread. I used my new favorite batting which is Quilters Dream Cotton in Supreme loft. It is super thick and squishy.


This bag turned out to be my favorite. I meant it to go to my mom, but I am afraid I wrote my little sisters name on it. Oh well, they can swap if they like.


This inside has a clever little pocket. I did not add binding to all the inside seams. I just used my #13 switch on my Bernina (it looks like a serger stitch). I LOVE how these bags turned out and I can't wait to make one for myself. I have been saving some Suzuko Koseki fabric for just a project like this.


The two bags meant for my sister have the contour lines quilted into them. But in a way they kinda look like big white brains. Oh well both my sisters are wickedly brilliant so brain bags is fine too.


Everyone also got a zip pouch too. I took a Craftsy quilting class (I know...I am totally a quilter already...but a little professional development is an awesome thing) The Secrets of Free Motion Quilting with Christina Cameli and learned this super cute texture.


A simple Wood grain


and a topography quilting. This is seriously the most fun and quick quilting design in my arsenal at the moment. I want to quilt everything with it.


These little pouches are my own little pattern. If anyone wants I can whip up a tutorial. They are crazy fast to make. The rick rack makes them silly.


My little nephew is growing up and instead of the typical monster man doll I made him a little leather  zip wallet. A little man bag. I put Money in it for him to spend at Disney World.


Then these two quilt for my own kiddos. Yes, I am aware I have 3 children. My youngest likes to design his own quilts, so I will give him an invitation to work with me in the design of his own with free reign of my stash.


This first one is for my oldest son. It is made entirely of Carolyn Friendlander's new fabric line Doe and the rest of my Kona Snow (Doe Snow it rhymes!). I bought a fat quarter stack from Heather over at House a la mode by some sorcery she got the fabric before it was released and was willing to part with it!!!!! Isn't this wonderful? Needless to say as soon as it arrived in my studio I cut into it and had immediately change my idea because I hated it. I was making Farmers Daughter blocks...I thought they would be great. But turns out block piecing was hurting my mind. SO I broke free and just went improv and I am SOOOOOOO much happier with it.


I saved the HST (half Square triangle) pieces from the Farmers Daughter blocks to make some cute little hour glass blocks. I think they are my favorite parts of the quilt.


For the rest of the Improv I cut strips. Some I sewed together then subcut to create interest. This was really fun to work on and was a great reset to my mind.


I LOVE Carolyn Friedlander's new line. The scale it so good for small scale piecing and large scale as well. The colors are fabulous as well. So so so good!


This is the first quilt I tried the Topography quilting on. The best way to describe it is a very loose stipple that you echo. It is awesome! The thick cotton batting shrank up quite a bit after it's trip through the dryer. but I love it.


This beauty was one I made quite a while ago out of my all time favorite fabrics and it sat waiting to be bound for several months. I figured I should get it bound so I could list it in my shop and sell it since I have a zillion and twelve quilts in my house. So many that we trip over them. Well...disaster struck while this quilt was folded safely out of the way. Someone bled on it. I have no idea why someone would want to mark up my pretty quilt with a big plop of blood, but they did. I bound it and sent it through the wash with high hopes...but nope. The blood was well set. Soon....now it is a gift for my daughter!


The quilting was fun on it. hills, wild feathers, swirls and crop circles.


Some random pieced blocks in among the half square triangles



And a great striped back!



So that is my handmade holiday. Hope yours is even more productive. I am shifting operations to the kitchen. We are doing a Beef Wellington for Christmas Dinner. We have been watching too much Gordon Ramsay.

Happiness and Joy to you and yours!

XO,
The Curtis Family

Christmas finishes

Hey there and Happy Holidays! We are gearing up for Christmas here at my house. That means lots of cooking and lots of Christmas sewing. Let me show you some quick pictures of (SOME) quilts I have finished recently. It has been rainy and dreary around Leavenworth, KS and sometimes the quilts slip out of the studio and go on their way before I have a chance to take pictures of them. 


This first one is a T-shirt quilt I was commissioned to make for a fireman. This was a great client to work with. She sent me design wall pictures of what she had in mind and we collaborated together to come up with a rather unique T-shirt quilt.


I quilted it with flames of course and used Quilters Dream Cotton batting in select loft.


The back is my favorite. It is strip pieced and was really fun to put together.


Next is Lynn's sweet floor quilt. This on was really fun. I love the idea of a giant Dresden Plate


Sorry, these pictures are pretty rotten. I had her hold it up before she left the studio. The lighting is dreadful. The quilt is super cute though!


Next up is Cheryl's wonderful Chevron. I love chevron quilts. I think there are a thousand different ways to quilt them.


For this one I did Echoing lines in the white and bubbles in the colored bits.


I get a bunch of questions on Instagram about how I use my Channel locks to quilt diagonal lines. It is easy! I need to work up a tutorial I suppose. All the bubbles are freehand and were a blast to quilt!


I also finished this adorable wall hanging for Meri. She and her grand daughter worked on it as a block of the month. She said her grand daughter was more excited about it than she was so she wanted to give it to her as a Christmas present. I custom quite it to guide around all the buttons and ribbons.



I finished this Doe fabric by Carolyn Firendlander. I think I am going to give it to my son. It will get it's own post because it is awesome. I used some new super thick cotton batting on it and quilted it freehand to look like topography contour lines.


And I finally slapped a binding on this fabulous quilt. I intended to sell in in my shop, because frankly my house is starting to look like a quilt hoarder lives here. But sadly I can't because it has a big stain on it. I left it folded in a safe place until I had time to bind it, and someone trotted over and bled on it. I have no other information than that. I don't know what led up to the nefarious event, but it was something dastardly I am sure. It will be given to my daughter. She won't care a bit. Maybe I will applique something over the stain? If you look close you can see it over on the left hand side right by the mermaid. I washed this quilt already once. It didn't come out.

xo,
Tia

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Lots of doing not much blogging.


Hey there! Do you recall the good old days when I used to blog a lot? I do! Gosh I used to always have my camera handy and I took loads of pictures and as soon as I "did it" I blogged about it! Now I am so busy that while I have still been doing things (probably 5 times as many things) I take pictures with my phone and Instagram them...and they don't get blogged at all. So did they really happen? I guess so...my Instagram says they did at least. So please, if you want to be overloaded with quilting pictures follow me on Instagram. I am TiaCurtisQuilts there too! I am doing so many things I need to make a bullet list...
  • I have 40 bolts of Cotton and Steel fabric I need to list in my etsy.com shop
  • I have about 20 bags and quilts I need to list in my shop too
  • I am writing patterns
  • I am teaching classes - both private quilting lessons on the long arm and I am teaching in quilt shops
  • I am teaching Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival 2015
  • I am renting out one of my long arms for quilters who are near by and want to quilt their own quilts on my long arm 
  • I am being a mom, nurse to my 3 kids and various neighbor ones, house cleaner, wife, lover and personal cook to a household of foodies. Sometimes I am a dog walker and always a tea drinker. 
SO yeah...I am being a Doer instead of a blogger...and that is good for me and my family it is not so good for my online business. I do want to try to blog at least once a week...that should be a doable goal right?

I did whip out my camera a couple of times over the last two weeks...


The quilt possee met at my house. We worked on fun fast ways to make half square triangles. We had a couple drop ins and have to leave early so we just did really easy stuff.



My dining room is getting too small for everyone, we may need to expand to my sun room as well...some day hopefully we will swell out to one of the local shops. That would be awesome!


Here are our finished blocks. Lemoyn Stars but crazy easy using half square triangles instead of Y seams. Mine is the dorked up one on the bottom right. It looks more like a mean transformer face. Oh well...I got distracted and the conversation and food was great so I don't really care.


I think I finished 10 edge to edge quilts over the last 2 weeks but only managed to take a real picture of this one. Edge to edge quilts are so quick! They are up and off my table in about 3 hours so I rarely get good pictures of them. This quilt pattern is named Board Shorts by Alex Ledgerwood and the e2e quilting design is Modern Maze 3.



Amy came over to rent a long arm and she quilted this entire t-shirt quilt in 3 hours. That is awesome! I charge $20 and hour to rent my hand guided long arm. You will need to take a quick class with me about loading up quilts and I teach some simple all over designs on muslin. Than you are off to the races. I rent out regularly to a couple ladies in ton, but I love having company down in my studio so please email me if you are Near Leavenworth, KS and want to quilt some of your own quilts. Save your back! Rent long arm time!



OK, that is it for today! I have quilts calling my name! I am taking the camera down with me too!

Have a great week!
Tia