Monday, November 18, 2013

Quilt #11 - Rainbow 9-Patch

A few years ago I was in the mode of buying just about any fabric that I could get my hands on...especially when it was on sale!  I ended up purchasing a fat quart pack off eBay.  The fabric ended up being not exactly what I wanted, but the colors were bright and the fabric quality was pretty decent.


Since I didn't have any distinct plans for it, it took me a while to figure out what I wanted to do with it.  In the end I decided to do some 9-patches since they were simple.  Here's all the fabric cut into squares and ready for sewing:


My mess of pieces as I was sewing them into sets for the 9-patches.  :-)


.... and the finished 9-patches.


As I started laying out the quilt, I decided to put them all on-point.  This is the first quilt I did on-point, which really wasn't that hard, but it made me learn how to do those setting triangles on the edges.


To this day, I still don't understand what I was thinking with the border choice.  I think I was going for a "picture frame" look where you have a wooden frame around something colorful in the middle.  At times, I'm tempted to take the binding off the quilt and just trim it shorter so the borders are gone....but that would put more work and time into this, so I haven't done it. 


I challenged myself with the quilting a bit.  I marked this feather wreath in all the big white squares and used my free-motion foot to quilt them.  The rest of the quilt was stitched in the ditch to stabilize everything.


Here's the overall quilt.  The binding is leftover scraps from the strips used to make the 9-patches.


Its definitely not one of my finer creations, but I was still pretty new to the quilt-making hobby.  I have it in my sewing room hanging over a quilt rack to remind of the good choices I can make (the quilting and the 9-patches themselves) and also the bad (the ugly brown border!). 

Happy Crafting!
~Sarah at upstateNYCreations

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Quilt #10 - Irish Rails

In the fall of 2009, my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer.  He had a few tests for several years that indicated that he could develop cancer, but it wasn't until 2009 that he was actually diagnosed with it.  Thankfully they did catch it early and he was able to go through minimal treatment for the cancer.  He had radiation treatments for several weeks, which were successful, and now he is completely cancer free.

When I found out that he had cancer, I decided to make a quilt for him.  Since his background is heavily Irish and he loves the Irish culture, colors, history, etc... I picked out fabrics for the quilt with a green and white theme.


I wanted to make the quilt quickly and since I was still new to quilting at the time, I decided to go with a simple rail fence pattern.  Here's my strips all sewn together:


Once I had the strips cut into blocks, I laid out everything on the floor to make sure I liked how it was going to look.


It needed a little "spicing up", so I decided to do a piano key border.  I used leftover parts of the piano key border to do the corner squares on point.  I had to fudge things a bit on those corners and ended up having to piece extra white strips to them to get them to the correct size.  In the final quilt, you can't really tell that I had to fudge those blocks.


Despite the picture below, the quilt top did lay flat. :-)


Here it is all quilted.  This was before I had my frame and did the quilting on my regular sewing machine.  It was very tedious as I used Golden Threads quilting paper to trace the "swag" pattern onto the paper and then pin the paper to the quilt.  Dealing with the paper for an entire quilt was not ideal either!


I don't really have great pictures of the quilting, but you can see it a bit more in the photo below.  I used a dark green Sulky thread for the quilting and Quilter's Dream Cotton batting.


And here's the overall look of the quilt.  (Hubby was gracefully hiding behind the quilt so I could get a full picture of it.)


Happy Crafting!
~Sarah at upstateNYCreations

Friday, November 15, 2013

What Do I Do....?

Karen at Quilts....etc. asked me earlier this week what I do that has caused me to travel so much lately.  I realized I haven't actually said what I do for work...just that it definitely keeps me busy. ;-)

So the company I work for makes steam turbines that generate power. This is what an entire turbine assembly looks like:

The team I run specifically deals with the internal workings of the turbine similar to the parts shown below:

When I first started with the company, I was an engineer designing components.  Over the years, I have moved through the ranks and am now the manager of 35 individuals who create the drawings necessary to make the parts.

Our company has two main sites now, one of which is located in Mexico.  My travel last week was to go to Mexico to meet both the engineers that I used to work with and the designers who work for me now. 

I don't normally have a lot of traveling, but it seems like the past month I've done nothing but travel.  The first trip was for a training course and the second was to meet the folks in Mexico.  Of the past 4 weeks, I've spent 2 weeks traveling and 2 weeks home.  I don't have any more business travel for the rest of the year, so I'm glad to be able to stay home for a while!

I'll probably have some additional trips in the future to Mexico, but I had a good trip the first time, so I don't see any problems in the future for traveling to Mexico again.  Just don't drink the water!  :-)

Happy Crafting!
~Sarah at upstateNYCreations

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Back from Travel

Phew!  It feels good to be back home!  I'm ready to be done with travel for at least this year.

I spent all of last week in Mexico for work.  I have a small set of designers who work for me and are located in central Mexico, in the city of Queretaro.  I had a great time on the trip and it was wonderful meeting everyone.  I had talked and worked with many of them for several years, but this was my first opportunity to meet them in person.

Somehow we were able to squeeze in 5 days of work in only 3 days of being in the office.  It was tiring!

I have a handful of pictures on my phone that I will share once I download them.  This is just a quick post to say that I'm back and should be able to get back to some posts this week.  :-)
Happy Crafting!
~Sarah at upstateNYCreations

Friday, November 1, 2013


Next week is likely to be another light blogging/commenting week.  If you don't hear back from me on any comments, don't take it personally, I'm just not able to respond immediately. :-)

After just getting back from a training class for work, I've had two weeks to:
  1. Get caught up from being out of the office
  2. Get ahead because I'm going to be out of the office.

So next week, I'm traveling to visit our designers and engineers who are located in Mexico.  Thankfully, the actual business is located in the middle of the country (about 3 hours northwest of Mexico City), so it should be alright from a security standpoint.  We are flying into Mexico City and then driving 3 hours to the business location.  On the way back, we actually stay one night in Mexico City, but its in the airport, so it should be fine.

I'm sure it will be a good trip and hopefully we won't have any problems.  I'm a little nervous since I haven't been there before, but I'm sure it will be good to meet everyone that I've only talked with on the phone.

I'm going to try to schedule a few posts this weekend, so at least the blog won't be completely stagnant!  :-)

Happy Crafting!
~Sarah at upstateNYCreations