Carissa C’s Over Due–A Quilt

Over Due:  A Quilt

Carissa, from this is happy stuff, recently hired me to quilt one of her projects.  Perhaps you may have noticed it on my side-bar recently.  According to Carissa the quilt, known as Over Due, had been under construction during the past three years.  At our guild meeting in March she approached me about the possibility of having it quilted.  We exchanged basic information and ideas before parting company.

Am I Already Too Late?

Early in April I saw a post on her blog updating her readers with the quilt’s progress.  Her intention, to pursue my services further, was announced in that post.  Here is an excerpt from her story.

Quote 2 from Carissa C_1

I was overjoyed to read her words.  The posting prompted the exchange of numerous emails eventually leading to a signed contract.

Square Stippling

The quilting pattern Carissa chose was divided into two categories.  In the white or a.k.a. negative space Carissa wanted an informal square stippling.  For the colored blocks she asked me to stitch around their inside borders.  Carissa quickly sketched her interpretation of square stippling on a scrap piece of cardboard.  Before leaving her home I asked her if I could retain that cardboard as a reference.

Any Questions?

As with any project though, there can be unanticipated questions.  You know the kind that don’t surface until you get started.  The square stippling was easy.  I quickly got into a groove and sailed right along.  After completing the first panel of white fabric I emailed a photo to Carissa for her approval.

Over Due by Carissa Christner
Over Due by Carissa Christner

The outlining of the blocks is where I had questions.  I sent her the following note:

. . . Do you want the stitching around the inside of each block to be a continuous row of stitching, beginning in the first block and moving on to subsequent blocks?  Or do you want me to start and stop (tie-off) in each block?

As is typical for Carissa, I soon received an illustration of her vision (oh, the wonders of modern technology).

Carissa C Drawing_1

The drawing provided the exact information I needed.  There was no longer any doubt in my mind how to proceed.  Once I had that drawing in my possession I was able to finish Carissa’s quilt without hesitation.

Without Compromising Quality

Knowing that Carissa’s desire was to display her quilt in the MMQG quilt show I made every effort to finish the quilting as quickly as possible, without compromising quality. In less than seven hours I had her quilt finished and removed from my Tin Lizzie.  She was totally blown-away when I emailed her to announce the quilt’s completion.

Seven Days Left

I delivered the quilt to Carissa at our April MMQG regular meeting on April 24, 2013.  Setup for the quilt show was scheduled for April 30, 2013 so that left her with seven days to apply her binding and make final adjustments.  I was so thrilled to meet my deadline and so absolutely pleased with the quilt’s outcome.  It truly was a joy to work on this project.

Thrilled Beyond Words!

To say that Carissa was thrilled beyond words would be an understatement.  Her out-pouring of praise was evidenced by the comments in her emails and a subsequent posting on her blog.  Here are a few excerpts:

This is what she said after seeing the first panel of white fabric quilted:

I LOVE it!!  It’s exactly what I had in mind!

After taking the quilt home Carissa emailed me this message:

I had the goofiest grin on my face all the way home and am already plotting my next quilt for you to quilt.  🙂  Thank you, thank you for doing such an amazing job on my quilt–even my husband was impressed!  🙂

I ask all my customers how they found me and why they chose me to do their quilting.  This is how Carissa responded:

I chose you because . . . I know that you read my blog and therefore had a good sense of my taste and style, I trusted that you would probably at least quilt it better than I could on my own machine.  But those were my minimum expectations.

These were her impressions of my quilting:

The end result that you created is far, FAR better than I could have done and adds so much rich interest to this quilt top that I already loved and made it SO much more interesting and beautiful.

Truly, I feel giddy every time I see it!

Her final words of affirmation were announced to her readers in this way:

Quote 1 from Carissa C_1

Well there you have it!  I would say this is one VERY happy customer.

I’m Linking Up

I’ve chosen to link my post with Freshly Pieced’s Work In Progress Wednesday.  There are many other readers that do as well.  You may view their projects by following the link below.

Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Camo iPad Tote

Free Fabric!

Before we get started with today’s post let my remind you of my First Anniversary’s Give-Away.  I’m celebrating this blog’s first anniversary by giving away a free charm pack.  Check out the link above for the specifics.  You wouldn’t want to miss out on a chance to get free fabric.  Now on to today’s WIP post.


Not too long ago I assembled a tutorial showcasing the construction of a Tag-Along tote. Before embarking on the construction of the Tag-Along I had begun a quest to make a tote suitable for my iPad and keyboard.  Being unsatisfied with the options available I went through the process of developing my own pattern.  My first mock-up showed room for improvement.  Since I already had the pattern for the Tag-Along I decided to try it out as an alternative.  As I assembled the tote I made numerous changes to the pattern.  While I am quite pleased with my finished product there were things about the Tag-Along I just wasn’t happy with so I went back to the drawing board and resurrected My Original design.

My Original Design

This time around I set out to overcome the issues I had with my first mock-up.  Missing on the first attempt were handles, a pocket for miscellaneous items and tabs to keep each pocket as well as the entire case securely closed.  I also had to address the inadequate size as well as the flimsiness of the layers.  Below are photos of my second attempt.


As you can see this tote was definitely made using fabrics not typically in my stash.  Since the finished project was destined for my husband I let him choose the fabrics.  He was quite thrilled to be in charge of the selections.  I felt a bit strange going to the fabric store’s cutting table with a cart loaded with camouflage, bright orange, black and green bolts of fabric.

If you examine this second tote you will notice my first change.  Not only does this specimen have handles but they wrap completely around the tote.  I felt the handles would provide more security if they were not just attached at the top.  You can also see that I added a closure tab.


Here’s a photo of the inside.  Note each pocket now has a tab closure.  Also added was the pocket for miscellaneous items (look for the camouflage fabric).


From this picture you can see that I made the pockets much deeper.  This time the iPad does not extend above the top edge of the pocket.  Obviously the iPad shown is not my husband’s.  He would never have a pink case on his.  For display purposes I used my own.

My Review

Granted nothing is ever perfect.  I however have plans for a third tote.  With this experiment I want to change the width of the handle, add a pocket for pens and use stabilizers that are not quite so sturdy.  Well, at least that’s what I have in mind so far.  It’s entirely possible there may just be a fourth and fifth version.  Who knows what will happen along my journey to improvement?

I’m Linking Up

I’m linking up this post with Freshly Pieced.  Go see what they are up to.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Spinning Wheels Quilt

Before we get to today’s post let me remind you that my blog’s first birthday is just around the corner.  On 4/27/13 I will make an announcement about a very special give-away.  Stay tuned.

It’s been quite a while since my last post.  My sewing machines have been working overtime trying to finish a number of projects.  I’ve made my husband a traveling case for his iPad, a quilt for our upcoming quilt show and quilted a lovely quilt for one of my fellow quilt guild members.  With all the activity going on around here the only thing I have to share today are photos of my Spinning Wheels quilt.




This little peek will have to do for now.  More to come.

I linking up with Freshly Pieced.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced