Monday, March 29, 2010

{ A Month of Giveaways } Week 1 Reveal

Happy Monday everyone! Welcome to week 1 of the I'm Just A Guy Who Quilts Month of Giveaways. We'll be featuring great stuff every week that you can enter for right here. Everything from fabric for your stash to toys for your kids and grand kids. Find out how you can enter at the end of this post.

The first items you can enter for are these neat plush stacking toys from Melissa & Doug. This brand has become very popular in the last few years. I remember when they first started out. Their items could only be found in boutiques and specialty stores. This set of 5 soft fabric rings and stacking pole can be yours to give to a happy child to enjoy. Stash them away for when your grand kids come over, or save them for that baby shower you were invited to next month!

Here's how YOU can win!

Everyone can enter up to 3 times in the following ways (please make sure you leave a separate comment for each entry):

1. Post a comment on this giveaway post.
2. Become a follower of my blog (leave a comment letting me know you follow).
3. Post the giveaway on your blog along with the Month of Giveaways image at the top of this post (click the image to enlarge and save) and leave me a comment with the link.

I'll use the random number generator to pick 2 winners on Sunday, April 4!

Good Luck!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

{ A Month of Giveaways } Join Me for Giveaway Goodness!

With April fast approaching I thought it would be neat to share the love of Spring with all my readers by hosting a month long giveaway! Beginning this week and continuing every week in April, I will post a giveaway that y'all can enter. How exciting, right?!?! Hoot Hoot!

Get your mousies ready for some clicking with the first post Monday morning!

Everyone can enter up to 3 times in the following ways (please make sure you leave a separate comment for each entry):

1. Post a comment on the giveaway post.
2. Become a follower of my blog (leave a comment letting me know you follow).
3. Post the giveaway on your blog along with the giveaway image above (click the image to enlarge and save) and leave me a comment with the link.

See you Monday!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

{ DQS8 } My Quilt Arrived!

Have a look see at what the mailman brought to my door today. It's my DQS8 quilt from Scott at Blue Nickel Studios. What a neat looking quilt! Lots of aqua and wonky blocks make for an interesting composition. Wasn't the lime stripe print a great choice for the binding?

Look at all the dots! I tend to gravitate toward dots whenever I see them in the fabric shops. They call my name. Especially if they are in aqua or red or orange or gray... I have stacks of the stuff.

What I like so much about this quilt is that it's way scrappy. Scott paired up fabrics that I wouldn't begin to put together. It's crazy really, but that's why it's so appealing. Your eyes jump all over it.

I was so surprised to see I was paired up with another guy quilter beacuse of how so few there were in this swap. I think the final count of participants was around 171 and 3 of them were men (go manquilters!). I made a comment to John in a note I sent with his quilt about how the partner pairing had to have been rigged because I got him as a "send to" partner.

Let's just say I lucked out big time this round. Thanks Scott! I already hung it on the wall in my studio. I made sure the awesome Momo scissor fabric was on the top! ;)

Talk later,

Saturday, March 20, 2010

{ Stitchin' Heaven Howdy } I'm A Featured Male Quilter During the Month of March!

Howdy Partners! I received an email from Nichole over at the Stitchin' Heaven blog a few days back inquiring if I'd be interested answering some questions for a feature. March is their Salute to Male Quiters Month and I was nominated by fellow manquilter Charlie (thanks Charlie!). Of course I said I was interested!

Stitchin' Heaven is a wonderful quilt shop in Texas and I'm a big fan of their newsletter, Hot Flashes. Their website is attractively put together and they pride themselves on their quality, selection, value, and service. Have a quilting question? Ask Deb! She's not only the boss, she's a quilting guru. I'm sure you'll love the site. Go visit them today!

What an honor! Thanks Nichole and the gang at Stitchin' Heaven!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

{ Book Review } Cozy Modern Quilts by Kim Schaefer

Cozy Modern Quilts: 23 Easy Pieced Projects to Bust Your Stash
Copyright 2009, Kim Schaefer
Published by C&T Publishing, Inc.
ISBN: 978-1-57120-622-0
MSRP: $19.95

The I'm Just A Guy Who Quilts Review:

I purchased this book in late 2009 after stumbling upon it during an search. I was looking for a book with easy to follow, modern quilt design patterns and I found this one by author Kim Schaefer. Cozy Modern Quilts has patterns for Lap Quilts, Wall Quilts, Table Runners and Placemats; any of which could be easily adjusted to create larger projects. One could simply add more blocks to any of these patterns and create bed size quilts.

The directions for each project are very simple, well written and are only a few pages long. Picture layouts are included throughout. The author manages to fit a large amount of information in a thin, 64 page book. I would say that both experienced quilters and beginners would delight in the array of patterns provided. Depending on the amount of time you dedicate for creating, any of these quilts could be pieced in a weekend.

Kim describes this book as "suitable for all skill levels" and the projects as "containing no tricky measurements or stretchy bias edges." A fun aspect of this book is that each pattern is made up of only 2 shapes; the square and rectangle. She encourages you to make them as scrappy as you want and customize the patterns to your own personal taste.

I found that the only aspect of the book that I didn't like was how unattractive the fabrics were that the sample quilts were made from. Even though the designs of the quilts are modern, there were lots of blenders and country florals used. This must be where the "cozy" label takes shape in the title. No name brand fabrics are contained in these pages. I would have liked to see more time and thought put into fabric choices. This one aspect really hurts the market appeal of this title in my opinion.

Interior Shots of Projects:

The Final Word!

Certainly a great book to give anyone who quilts lots of inspiration, but don't buy it for eye candy. Buy it for the versatile, modern patterns! If this book was reissued using current market fabric trends I'm sure it would be a big hit.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

{ Pillow Talk } Tutorial for the Front Goes Live Tonight!

Stay tuned for a tutorial to make the front of this pillow. It goes live this evening!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

{ Pillow Talk } A Tutorial, CSN Giveaway and Review!

Things have been very busy in the studio lately. We've been cooking up our very first Guy Who Quilts tutorial based on my Pillow Talk Swap Pillow that I made for my partner. No sneak peeks yet though, as there's still a few more pictures to take today. Look for the post tomorrow right here!

We're also gearing up to do our very first product review and giveaway! We've teamed up with the wonderful folks at CSN Stores to review some items from their Kids Bedding shop. If you haven't checked their shop out, I highly recommend you take a look. They offer thousands of unique items for every aspect of your home. I've selected an item from their inventory to review and give away to my readers. Look for the post in the weeks to come!

See you back here tomorrow! Till then, have a happy Saturday,

Saturday, March 6, 2010

{ DQS8 Finished & In the Mail! } End of a Staycation and A Very Messy Sewing Room

Hi folks! Well, another whirlwind quilting adventure has come to an end. DQS8 officially closed today and I managed to get my contribution finished and in the mail this morning.

I have to admit, my sewing room has seen better days! I am a total sewing slob when I'm working. There are threads and fabrics spread about everywhere. I can really do a lot of damage spending my entire week long staycation quilting. Like a waking bear crawling from its cave in Spring, I emerged from the sewing room this morning after my break from what I like to call "my real job." Want to see what I've been creating?

Here it is! All finished! This is the quilt I made for my DQS8 partner. I used Denyse Schmidt's Single Girl pattern and modified it a little bit. Taking her pattern, I reduced the pieces by photocopying it at 50%. I appliqued all the pieces on a linen background fabric and stitched everything down.

I used pieces of Joel Dewberry's Deer Valley in all 3 colorways. I cut out each piece individually and backed them with SteamASeam 2. Instead of quilting the top in the way the pattern suggested I decided to mirror the ring pattern the applique created. Since there are only 3 colorways in the DV line, I traced a ring and stitched around it in a contrasting thread to create some visual interest. I'm thinking that I could have also combined all three lines for the fourth ring as well.

Here are some other shots in various stages of completion.

I used my handy Spoonflower printed business cards as a label.

And guess what came in the mail on Thursday? A FQ assortment of Joel's newest line, Modern Meadow. Yum!

Off to clean up my quilting room and finish the pillow for my Pillow Talk Swap partner...

Good thing all that snow we got a week ago is finally starting to melt. Here's what the back deck looked like a few weeks ago.

Happy quilting,
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