Quilt Finish!

YAY! I finished the quilt I made for my friends 50th Birthday, and he now has the quilt so now I can speak and share freely! He was totally surprised and happy with it, and it really made me happy being able to make it for him. Giving is always such a good feeling, and I don’t get to do it as often as I’d like.

I made the quilt to be 68″ x 96″ for my friend (pictured on left) – I wanted it to be long enough for him to sleep with – being tall has challenges! 😉 I’m a little bummed I won’t be able to show it at quilt guild, but I’m happy I was able to give it to him on his birthday!

I used the Trip Around The World block, and named it “50 Trips Around The Sun” which I thought was pretty punny! I used a piece of Kaffe Fassett fabric as my focus fabric to choose the other colors. I wanted it to ‘sparkle’ so I used different shades of solid grey and blues, and yellow-greens. I LOVE how it turned out!

This is my scrappy back – I didn’t have too many scraps for this one so I used an Allison Glass piece that I adore along with this quilt back with “love and blessings” and poetry written all over it. It was perfect for my friend. I used wool batting and did straight lines on the diagonal for quilting. I quilted it on my Juki, and it came out great!

I have a long list of people I’d love to make a quilt for… but the next one will be another ‘healing quilt’ – or a quilt that I make purely for my own need to cleanse and express. I’m starting to think I should go to school to be a counselor and then use quilting as an art therapy. It’s helping me so much in these very dark times.

Speaking of healing… I’ve been on a new health regimen that hopefully will bring me closer to being healthy. I was diagnosed with SIBO a few years back and did a couple rounds of heavy antibiotics to treat it, but they did not work. I’ve adjusted my diet to deal with this, but things have been getting worse, so I took charge and bought a whole bunch of necessary suppliments and am on a Low FODMAP/SCD diet for the next 3 weeks.

I really hope this will help. My nausea keeps me from doing so much. I just saw that Craftsy is having a quilt designer fellowship contest – if you win they set you up with a new sewing machine and a booth at Quilt Market, which would be my dream… if I didn’t get so sick every time I travel. I get sick just going out to eat, I don’t know how I can try any new directions in life until this is figured out. I feel so held back it’s frustrating. I’m lucky that I work at home with my husband who takes care of me when I need it. I really don’t think a job would let me sit in the bathroom for half the day… or would be so lenient when my brain fog causes me to check out completely.

It’s almost like having an autoimmune disease… the kind you can’t see. I don’t look sick, just pregnant (swollen belly from SIBO) and full of acne due to my lack of liver enzymes. However, sometimes I feel like all I want to do is lie down (where ever that may be) from being SO exhausted, sometimes I get nauseas from the most simple things like air fresheners and detergents (definitely from things like shoes/tires/carpets/plastics/perfumes/colognes/anything scented), sometimes I get so swollen my skin itches, or my tongue swells up and it’s hard to talk, my ears ring constantly and loudly -to the point it’s hard to hear anything else, and my head is usually pounding. Plus every joint aches almost all the time. If I happen to eat something ‘bad’… it all goes South from there… think food poisoning – full on with fever sweats – that lasts 2-6 days.

I’m not wanting to complain necessarily… I just wanted to share where I’ve been at. Sometimes sharing helps, and it connects me to others going through the same thing. (Thinking of you, Cath!) The more we share, the more we realize we are not alone. 🙂


Getting Through

The last few weeks have been tough on my body – my pain levels are running high and it’s been rough to ‘get through’. I’m not sure what’s causing the increased inflammation right now, but I’m feeling all my nerve endings today. All. Of. Them. Especially around my teeth – which is worse than any other pain IMHO!

I was recently tested for Degenerative TMJ. I have it in my spine – and recently found out my mother had her whole lower jaw replaced due to DTMJ… so it’s not looking good genetically. I’m trying not to think about this too much, however when your spine and mouth are throbbing, it’s hard to think of anything else.

On that note… I’m trying to keep myself super busy (take my mind off my body) and I’ve been working on a new quilt top that I’m just loving! It’s for a very close friend for his b-day… so I can’t post on FB and I’m really hoping he doesn’t read my blog 😉

It’s a Trip Around The World Quilt. A lot of chain piecing, so I got the top done pretty fast! I’m still adding a 4″ border all around in darker grey – I want to make sure it’s big enough to actually use, and my friend is pretty tall. I’m naming the quilt: “50 Trips Around The Sun” as a play on the block name.

Today I hope to get the back completed as well – I have a 1 yard of awesome backing fabric, and I’m going to piece the rest. I want to use up some of these scraps! So I better get to it! What are you up to this weekend? Better yet… what is your number one pain-reducing go-to plan?

Hexie Layouts

Last night I did a trunk show at the Portland Modern Quilt Guild meeting along with three other amazing quilters! I brought a mix of things to show how I work with color, and two of the quilts I brought were Hexie Quilts. The question I was asked most was: how do I layout my hexie quilts.
So I thought I’d repost a video from a couple years ago when I was working on the Jellyfish layout. This shows only 4 days of about 30 that I spent on the layout. It was the most time consuming part of the whole process!
Hexie Jellyfish Quilt – 100% hand stitched
I use a ‘design board’ made from rigid foam insulation with batting wrapped around it and taped to the back. It’s very lightweight and can be moved – however, I tend to leave my layout as is
until I have completed all the sewing. Yes… that means that thing hung out on my dining room
table for about 4 months.
It was such a great night, I received so much wonderfully supportive feedback from so many people, made me feel all super special!  I love my quilty friends!!

I’ve also been working on a brand new quilt! I’m super excited about it – I’m about halfway done with the top – hope to have the whole thing finished in a month for an upcoming birthday. It’s going to be tough time-wise for me, quilts take a long time for me to finish!
The block I chose to use on this one is called Trip Around The World – a few years back there was a tubular technique I found here at Quiltville.com by Bonnie Hunter that makes the sewing go a little faster – I’m using that technique and it’s really fun!
fabric pull
This is a partial fabric pull – this is my main colorway, or the colors I plan to match to.
After cutting strips of fabric, this is a pretty pile of scraps I had – I can already tell I’m going to love this quilt!
I have all the strips sewn together, now it’s time to cut, press, and then back to the machine for a bit. This is my project for the weekend, along with doing some plant love in the yard (I hope it stops raining for a bit). What are you up to this weekend?