Tuesday, October 15, 2019

2019 #SewPINK Initiative Blog Hop



Hey, folks!  We are basically halfway through October, and it's finally my day to share the project that I created as part of ByAnnie's #SewPINK Initiative blog hop!

Before I get to that, can we talk about the fact that breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the US according to the Center for Disease Control?  That's pretty significant, and I think it's quite scary.  Mammograms are not on my list of fun things to do, but they are a valuable tool for helping to detect breast cancer early.  In combination with monthly self-exams and being checked by your doctor during your annual well-woman exam, it's worth the few moments of your time.  Please don't be afraid to talk to your doctor about any changes that you may notice.  The chance that it might help to save your life will more than make up for a couple of minutes of a potentially uncomfortable conversation.

Ok, let's get back to the thing you came to see!




To celebrate the amazing strength, bravery, and courage of those women AND men who fight against breast cancer, I made a mini quilt that is ~15" x 20".  I used an amazing pattern from Happy Sew Lucky's Tattoo block series called Courage.  As usual, my insanely talented friend Teresa Silva of Quilting Is My Bliss worked her quilting magic by adding some beautiful custom quilting to give depth, texture, and definition to the piece.  I wanted it to have a little extra bit of oomph, so ByAnnie's Soft and Stable was used in place of regular quilt batting.  Soft and Stable adds a bit of body to the piece and helps to really show off the fabulous stitching.  It's become my go-to "batting" for all of my mini quilts (in addition to being my go-to bag stabilizer)!  If you haven't tried it yet, you really should!




I selected a range of pink and grey solids plus one of my favorite dots for the background just to mix it up a little.  From top to bottom they are:  Designer Solids in Manatee from Free Spirit, Cotton Couture in Ozone from Michael Miller, Polka Dot in Silver from Dear Stella, Kona Cotton in Valentine by Robert Kaufman, Designer Solids in Pink from Free Spirit, and Cotton Couture in Pink by Michael Miller.

The quilt was foundation paper pieced using 50wt Aurifil 100% cotton thread in Natural White (color 2021).  I loved how subtle the grey looked against the quilt, so I also used Ozone for the binding so it would not distract from the design in the center.




I hope you are enjoying the posts from all of my fellow bloggers and the product deals that are currently being offered this month from ByAnnie!  You can find the links with more information about the deals and giveaways below.

I would also like to say a special thanks to the team at ByAnnie for taking BEAUTIFUL photos of my quilt.  You're a star, B!

For now I'll wrap up with a gratuitous close-up shot of the quilting!  I love those swirls!


Custom quilting done by Teresa Silva of Quilting is My Bliss


The #SewPink Initiative was created by ByAnnie.com LLC to raise awareness for breast cancer during October’s Breast Cancer Awareness month. They have pledged to raise funds to donate to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through sales and to promote action through giveaways.

To see the calendar of events visit: https://www.byannie.com/2019-SewPINK#calendar

For more information please visit the official #SewPINK information page: https://www.byannie.com/2019-SewPINK

To donate directly to the BCRF visit: https://give.bcrf.org/give/31404/#!/donation/checkout

ByAnnie will be donating 30% of profits on all SewPINK items sold at their web store. You can search for SewPINK items on their website or see the list of items here: https://www.byannie.com/index.php?route=product/search&search=sewpink

Find a screening program near you:

Friday, October 11, 2019

More than 5! - October 2019 Aurifil Artisan Challenge

It's a new month, so Aurifil has set forth a new challenge for the Artisans. Our October's challenge is to use more than 5 colors in a project.  While it is quite common for me to use 2-4 thread colors in most of my quilt or bag projects, I don't often exceed that number (except for once which I will tell you about at the end).  The greatest opportunity I have to use additional colors seems to be when I'm doing a hand sewing project.  I've used 7 or 8 colors on an English Paper Piecing project that I never finished (and no, I'm not showing you that because it is NOT good).  LOL.  Cross stitch, my most recent obsession, has become a great vehicle for using a lot of color.

Because it's October and Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, it seemed timely to make this super cute Vintage Black Cat pattern by Not So Modern Millie (be warned that the stitch chart is only in B&W at the time of this post, so dig out some colored pencils because you may want to color it in).  I've used 8 different colors of Aurifloss, and I'm really happy with how it turned out.

Aurifloss colors from L to R: 1135, 1147, 1133, 4030, 2610, 2600, 2021, 2692

And because I couldn't stop there... what do you get when you find a pattern that would make a perfect gift for a friend and it has more than 5 colors?  That's right!  You get a second Aurifil Artisan project for October!

Aurifloss colors from L to R: 1114, 2892, 1100, 2479, 2105, 1246, 2692
"You Can't Make Everybody Happy. You're Not Tequila" (pattern from @stephxstitch) is the first cross stitch project that I have gifted to anybody.  Thankfully, the gift was a total success and  my tequila loving friend was THRILLED (here's the proof)!  I used 7 colors of Aurifil's Aurifloss to complete the project.  Once it was stitched, it got a quick bath in Soak wash before getting pressed,  hooped, and mailed.

I would be remiss if I didn't at least mention my personal all-time record for the number of thread colors used in a project.  For that we need to rewind and go back to the Sewology quilt that I finished in September 2018.  I pieced the twin-sized quilt top with 18 colors of thread - 17 are 50wt cotton and clear monofilament.  Yes, really!  It seems pretty crazy to do that, right?  Perhaps it is, but if you've ever pressed seams open on a quilt, you may have noticed that you can sometimes see little dots of your piecing thread between the fabrics.  I absolutely didn't want that to happen on this quilt, so I went a little overboard (and my little thread loving heart thoroughly enjoyed the challenge).  I matched thread to the fabrics that I would be using in each block.

Thread colors (2230, 2021, 5004) matched to fabric picks for the Seam Ripper block
The 12 block quilt was originally released as a block of the month program from Pen and Paper Patterns, so I was working in small amounts.  35 fabrics from the Kaleidoscope collection by Alison Glass for Andover and 18 thread selections later, my top was finished and off to be custom quilted by Teresa Silva of Quilting Is My Bliss.

Photo by @pinkdoorfabrics
Do I actually think it was necessary to use as many colors as I did?  Absolutely not, but if you've got 'em, why not use them?  LOL.

That just about wraps up everything I've got for you today.  I'm off to sew something, and I hope you are too!  Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month + ByAnnie's New #SewPINK Initiative (and Blog Hop!!)

I wanted to pop in and take the opportunity introduce you to a special event during the month of October.  My friends at ByAnnie.com have launched the #SewPink (note that not all posts with that hashtag may be related to this specific event because that's just how Instagram rolls) initiative to help raise awareness for breast cancer and to raise money for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

I am very proud to have been selected to join a group of bloggers that have been tasked with creating something to share with all of you.  You can find out more information about the event by following the links below, including a calendar so you can see the list of participating bloggers.  Be sure to come back here on Tuesday, October 15 when I unveil my project.  I will be posting pics on my Instagram account, but you will be able to read more about it here!





The #SewPink Initiative was created by ByAnnie.com LLC to raise awareness for breast cancer during October’s Breast Cancer Awareness month. They have pledged to raise funds to donate to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through sales and promote action through giveaways.

For more information please visit their official #SewPINK information page: https://www.byannie.com/2019-SewPINK

To donate directly visit: https://give.bcrf.org/give/31404/#!/donation/checkout

To see the calendar of events visit: https://www.byannie.com/2019-SewPINK#calendar

ByAnnie will be donating 30% of profits on all SewPINK items sold on their web store. You can search for SewPINK items on their website or see the list of items here: https://www.byannie.com/index.php?route=product/search&search=sewpink