Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Around The World Blog Hop

The Sassy Quilter
I was invited by Paula at The Sassy Quilter to join the Around the World Blog Hop.  It's a fun, crafty version of a chain letter, except all that bad luck doesn't happen to you if you break the chain!  :)  When you're invited, you tell a little about yourself, answer a few thought provoking questions and continue the blog hop by inviting 3 other bloggers who inspire you.  They will blog the following week about their creative process and keep the blog hop going!  Cool, huh? 

I was so excited to get an invite from Paula, because honestly, she is one of MY major inspirations for quilting.  I follow her blog and love seeing what she's working on through social media.  Her quilting tips and tutorials are always so great and clearly written.  The more I see her beautiful work, the more I think we are related because we have a lot of the same tastes.  If you aren't following Paula, you are missing out!  Go check out The Sassy Quilter!

About Texas Quilting Gal

Cheryl Camarano Watson's photo.
Hubby & me at SIL wedding
Here's the cliff notes version of me:  I'm Cheryl, a 33 year old, football loving, displaced Texan (but, only for 2 more weeks).  I'm a temporarily retired surgical nurse and a permanently obsessed quilter.  I have an amazing husband of 10+ years, who encouraged me to stay home and take a break from my grueling job for a little.  Unfortunately for him, I am way to busy quilting now to go back to work!  You can read more about how I got into quilting (hint: my mom!) and some of my projects here.
P.S.  My dog is the cutest E.V.E.R.

Triangle QAL top

What am I working on?

Paula hosted a Triangle Quilt Along a few months ago and it was a blast!  I whipped up the top in no time, but then we started getting our Kentucky house ready to sell for our move back to Texas.  I finally started quilting it yesterday!

I also just finished this super fun folded star pillow.  It was my first pillow cover and I'm definitely going to be making some more.  It's such a fun way to add a little quiltiness to your d├ęcor!

Photo: My latest experiment, a folded star pillow.   It was a ton of work folding 237  2.5" squares, but it turned out really cute, I think!
Folded Star Pillow

How does my work differ from others in its genre?

This was a really hard one for me, because I don't know that my work really does differ.  I'm always saying I'm not very creative, which to my non-crafty friends sounds crazy.  I guess what I really mean is I'm not very original.  I don't step away from patterns very much because of my type A personality.  I'm too afraid it will end horribly and I don't really want to "waste my time" with something I'm not going to absolutely love.  I do have to say that I'm not afraid to try new things, whether that's a new skill, technique, or tool.  If I see a quilt or project I love, I'll google the heck out of it and figure out how I can make one myself!

Why do I write and create what I do?

As a nurse, I definitely need to have my mind stimulated.  I'm constantly wanting to learn and I think the quilting world has filled that need since I've stopped working.  There's ALWAYS something to learn out there.  A way to improve your skills.  A new toy that makes life easier.  A technique that you've never tried before.  Because of that drive, I'm starting to amass a collection of projects that don't have a home, yet!  I'm hearing this more and more from the hubby, "That is really nice/pretty/cool, who's it for?"  And I have to sheepishly answer back, "No one" or "ME!"  I just love the process of making something beautiful even if I don't have a plan for it, yet.  I have the feeling I'm not the only one who does that, though!

How does my writing and creating process work? 

Honestly, there's not much thinking behind it.  (Is that terrible?)  I see something I love and I HAVE to make it!  I started blogging to stay connected with my family and friends and to keep a journal of my projects.  Eventually, I would love to start sharing tutorials and hosting quilt alongs and giveaways, but I feel I need more quilting AND blogging experience before people take me seriously!  ;)
That leads me to introducing a few of the quilters who inspire me to grow my blog and my quilting skills.
I first met Sally through the Houston Modern Quilt Guild (HMQG) where she serves as President.  I'm in awe of her originality and designs.  She's super sweet and her tutorials are so fun. I just love how she weaves embroidery into her quilting projects and that she strives to bring hope through her work.  Her beautiful spirit shines through her writing and creations.

Hilary is also a HMQG'er but I didn't get the chance to know her personally before I left Texas.  I've been following her blog ever since I saw her AMAZING Marcelle Medallion quilt.  Seriously, THE BEST medallion quilt I've ever seen!  It's definitely on my to-do list now because of hers.  She's also been selected to compete in Sewvivor!  Her nautical themed pillow is super adorable so GO VOTE FOR HER (she's contestant #9)!  :)

A while ago, I fell so in love with one of Shelley's quilts that I immediately went to her etsy store and bought the kit!  Luckily for me, she's hosting the Aspen Glow Quilt Along next month and I finally get to put this beauty together.  Over the last few months, I have had the pleasure of testing out her newest patterns.  It's been super fun to be a part of the process and I really enjoy the creativity in her patterns.
Well, these 3 lovely ladies have accepted the Around the World Blog Hop challenge and will be posting next week.  I can't wait to see their answers!  Thanks for letting me share these amazingly, talented quilters with you.  I just know you will enjoy their work, too!


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

ALYoF - August Goal

My excuse for being MIA in the blogging world- I've been elbow deep in unpacking/repacking, organizing, cleaning, painting, painting and more painting back at our house in Kentucky.  I have managed to sneak a little quilting in there along the way though.  I've joined the Texas Road Trip QAL hosted by Pretty Little Quilts and My Fabric Relish.  It's been so fun learning more about my great home state and putting together a GIANT TEXAS QUILT!!!!  We are a proud bunch, huh?
Deep in the Heart of Texas quilt WIP
Well, I have 3 quadrants done and while I'd love for my goal this month to be a completed, bound quilt, I know it's not realistic because..... WE ARE MOVING BACK TO TEXAS THIS MONTH!  Yep, most of our work on the house was to get it ready to sell.  Now we are just waiting for an offer.
My August goal for A Lovely Year of Finishes is to have the top all sewn together.  That's it!  If I get more done, that's awesome, but I'm eventually going to have to pack up my sewing room (I feel like I just got it set up!)  
Also, Paula @ The Sassy Quilter invited me on the Around the World Blog Hop so tune in next Wednesday for my post and who I look to as my quilting inspirations.  I can't wait to share with y'all!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

2014 New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop

Plum and JuneFirst, a huge thanks to Beth at Plum and June for hosting this New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop.  She has worked very hard to coordinate everything and I think I speak for all of the participating bloggers, we are very appreciative of this opportunity to share our blogs and learn from each other.

San Antonio mission in my Texas hometown

Welcome y'all...

Thanks for visiting my little blog, Texas Quilting Gal!  I'm Cheryl, and as you can guess, I'm from Texas.  Although I now live in Kentucky, the saying IS true- you can take the girl outta Texas, but you CAN'T take the Texas outta the girl!  God Bless Texas!

I have been sewing off and on for 7ish years, but I started seriously quilting after I stopped working as a surgical nurse in November 2012.  I was just going to take a little break but the hubby (and I) LOVED me being home!  The one downside was he quickly discovered I was spending WAY more money on fabric, thread, patterns, fabric, notions, magazines, fabric....... that he threatens me all the time with going back to work. :)  I might go back part time one day, but I have too much quilting to do now.

I first learned to quilt from my mom.  She's sewn for decades but really started quilting in the 90's on the very machine I sew with now, a Bernina 1090.  Since I've gotten more serious about quilting, we've really been having fun chatting in our crazy quilting language that Dad doesn't understand and spending time together sewing, shop hopping, retreating and festivalling (are those even words?)
Our 2013 retreat quilts

Mom and Me at the 2013 Houston Quilt Festival

My First Quilt...

In middle school, I made a very simple square patchwork quilt with Mom and didn't find the pieced top again until recently (it was lost in the abyss that is her quilt room, sorry Mom!)  It is now basted and ready to be quilted, making it my oldest UFO at 20 years.  I think it'll make the perfect picnic blanket.

My very first quilt ready for some free motion action!
Since my mom is 1100 miles away now, I've also learned a lot by participating in quilt alongs (QAL), block of the months (BOM) and online flickr swaps.  It's so much fun to interact with quilters from all over the states and world.  It's even more fun to receive blocks from Canada, England, Netherlands and Sweden!  I haven't put together my swap blocks, yet, so you'll have to visit again soon to see how they turn out.  I have 2 color themes going, yellow/grey and purple/grey, and have enough for at least 2 large quilts.

My Favorite Quilts... 

I participated in the Feathers Quilt Along using Alison Glass' paper pieced pattern.  My favorite thing about QALs is the motivation to get a project done, as there are others sewing the same section as you are during a specific time frame.  The other perk is there are some AMAZING prizes!  While I didn't win any prizes in this QAL, I'm IN LOVE with my finished quilt top.  I still need to quilt it, but am working up the courage to take it on with 6" of throat space on my Bernina 1090. YIKES!

Alison Glass Feathers Quilt Along
Another favorite is a baby quilt I made for my best friend's sweet daughter.  I just love Joel Dewberry and made this fun plus sign quilt with a fat quarter bundle I snagged online (don't you LOVE the deals online?)  The backing was my first time working with minky and boy is it messy!  But, it's so super soft and I just adore how the quilting shows up on it.  I had some extra fabric, so I made a mini doll quilt for her sassy older sister!  :)

Baby quilt for Miss Abigail!  Don't you just love the minky swirls!

Mini doll quilt for Miss Hannah

My Current Quilts...

Currently, I am sewing with the Deep in the Heart of Texas Roadtrip QAL.  Being a Texan that had just moved to Kentucky, I knew I HAD to make this quilt!  It's also a blog hop and various bloggers are hosting special city block patterns along the way.  I've just finished quadrant 3 and should finish this top by the end of July.  This is my first "scrappy" quilt and I'm really pleased with how it is turning out.

Starting to look like Texas!
I am also participating the paper Sew Kitschy BOM and the Sugar Block Club BOM.   These have really helped improve my skills, especially in paper piecing.  And, if you've never heard of Amy Gibson's blog Stitchery Dickory Dock, you're missing out!  She's so authentic and sweet and is a really great teacher.  Her FREE Craftsy 2012 BOM really kicked off my quilting again and I learned sooooo much!

Sugar Block Club & Sew Kitschy Blocks
If you want to check in on my projects, you can follow me on flickr and Instagram at texasquiltinggal or follow by blog via email or bloglovin with the buttons on the right.

Tips and Trivia...

Well, that's enough about me.  Here's some fun info for you!

Blogging Tip:  I'm the last one that should be giving blogging advice, since I'm fairly new at it.  I have learned to ask questions from other bloggers, though.  The quilty world is so nice and it definitely opens up conversation between bloggers.  When I see something I like about someone else's blog, I leave a comment and start a dialogue.  I've learned a lot that way and made some pretty great quilting friends along the way!  Also, Google is my friend!  You can find out how to do anything by searching on Google.  There are tons of videos out there on blogging tips and how to format things.

Quilting Tip:  Curious about a technique or LOVE that new pattern that looks too hard?  Just try it!  My mom has commented several times on how impressed she is with my bravery to try new things.  You gotta start somewhere, right?  I by no means am an expert, but I have really expanded my knowledge in the past year and a half because I just go for it. And, most importantly, we aren't perfect.  If you can't see the mistake while galloping by on a horse (another mom'ism), don't waste your time unpicking or fretting about it!

Texas Quilting Gal Speed Trivia Round

  1. Name & Age: Cheryl, 33
  2. Favorite Fabric Designers: Kate Spain, Bonnie and Camille, Joel Dewberry
  3. Favorite TV Show: Reality TV addict <<<hangs head in shame>>>
  4. Favorite Music: Praise and worship
  5. What I Sew On:  19 year old Bernina 1090, it's a workhorse and the only machine I have
  6. Favorite quilting notion:  Rotary cutter, Frixion pens, and Aurifil thread
  7. Superpower I Wish I Possessed:  S̶u̶p̶e̶r̶ ̶s̶p̶e̶e̶d̶y̶  Instant basting and binding on all my quilts
  8. Quilting Wishlist:  Bernina 750QE, sit down long arm, Free fabric for life..... :)
That being said, I'm looking for a new toy to make my free motion quilting easier (I need to start planting the seed to the hubby).  My 6" throat space is getting a little too tight for the bigger quilts!

My question for you is what do you sew on?  Also, if you free motion quilt, what do you use (domestic, sit down long arm...)? 

Blog Hop...

Lastly, don't forget to visit these other wonderful bloggers today and check in with Plum and June to see the past week's 2014 New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop schedule!

Sarah @ Berry Barn Designs
Liz @ Green Cheese Quilting
Janet @ Simply Pieced
Ruth @ Charly & Ben's Crafty Corner
Kristyn @ Melon Patch Quilts
Jo @ Riddle and Whimsy
Linh @ Calling All Stitchers
Alida @ Tweety Loves Quilting
Rachel @ Quiltineering

Thanks for visiting and y'all come back now!  :)

Love, Cheryl @ Texas Quilting Gal

Monday, June 9, 2014

Pattern Testing for Cora's Quilts

Cora's Quilts
Shelley at Cora's Quilts has a spring sampler quilt along going on right now.  She really has beautiful patterns and I've been lucky enough to test out a few of the sampler blocks before they come out!  I've used a different color way than she did, but I do love how they've turned out.  

Block # 6 Temple Court
Block #7 Friendship Quilt
Go check out Shelley's Spring Sampler.  Join us and every block you make and link up on her site or flickr group could win you some wonderful prizes!

I'm loving texty fabric right now!
Aspen Glow Quilt Along @ Cora's QuiltsOn a side note, Shelley is also hosting a quilt along starting in September using her fabulous Aspen Glow pattern.  I first found Cora's Quilts through her etsy shop and I fell in love with her Aspen Glow quilt using the Winter's Lane fabric line.  I HAD to have it and ordered the lap sized quilt kit immediately.  I am so excited to break it out of hiding and sew along with Shelley in this quilt along!  She's using a new fall themed color way, but I will be using the original Winter's Lane.  As you can see from my Christmas tree skirt and Advent Calendar, I LOOOVE this fabric line and can't wait to finally get my quilt together.  Nothing like a little motivation to get this baby done by Christmas!


Friday, May 23, 2014

Traveling Stash Box Winner

Congratulations to Elli of Lovelli Quilts for winning The Traveling Stash Box #5!  (P.S She has a great blog, so go check it out here!)  I hope you have fun digging through the treasures and adding to it for the next blogger.  Here's the link to the rules if you need reminding!
To all you other bloggers, I have also won Box #6 and after the holiday weekend, I'll peruse through it and add some more goodies.  I'll post that giveaway next week, so stay tuned!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

TSB Giveaway

What is TSB, you ask? It's the exciting Traveling Stash Box! This box is full of sewing and quilting goodness from crafters all over the US. It travels from blogger to blogger, to share  fabric, patterns, notions, and handmade items. 
There are 6 of these boxes traveling around!
There are rules on Tricia's (TSB moderator) site, but I'll list the most important ones so you can decide if you want to participate.
1.  You must be an ACTIVE blogger
2.  You may take anything from the box, but you must replace each item with another that's comparable and quilt shop quality
3.  You must blog (pics appreciated) about the TSB when you receive it and host a giveaway to share the goodness in a timely manner
4.  You must email Tricia when you recieve the box and when you mail it out again (she does an awesome job of keeping track of all the boxes)
5.  You must be willing to pay for shipping (about $12) within the US only, sorry international folks
OK, now that the rules are mentioned, how about seeing the fun things I got in Box #5 from Alison?  
Quiltaholic sign for my new sewing room!  Fabric, patterns and a book!
AMH book!  Jackpot!
3 sweet patterns  :)

And here's all the things that I have added to the TSB.  They need a new home!  Are you willing?

101 fun sewing projects
Kate Spain goodies, notions, kids labels

Fabric (a little Texas houndstooth in there!)
I also added 3 patterns, but I forgot to take a picture.  Silly me, I was just so excited to get this giveaway going. 
So, here's how you enter.  After you check out the rules, if you want to join in the fun, just leave me a comment with your blog link so I can verify you are an active blogger.  I will draw a winner on the morning of the 23rd.  Best of luck fellow bloggers!

P.S.  I recently won a different TSB, so stay tuned for another TSB giveaway!


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

ALYoF May Goal

Well, April has come and gone and I barely got a lick of sewing done.  We moved from Texas to Kentucky and all my sewing stuff is STILL in boxes!  I've been trying so hard to get the entire (yes, I said ENTIRE) house painted before I set up all my quilting stuff.  I finally started painting the last room, my quilting area, today.  Hopefully, by Thursday, I'll be done painting and can start setting up the machine.  I'm having serious withdrawals.  On top of being majorly behind on some bee blocks, BOMs, QALs, and testing patterns, I never even started my April goal for A Lovely Year of Finishes.

Remember these Joel Dewberry fat quarters I was going to make into a baby quilt for my best friend?  Well, they still look like this.... somewhere.... in a box!  Sorry, bestie!  :( 

We've planned a trip to meet the little one this month, so I WILL get the quilt finished before we leave.  I'm leaning to a plus sign quilt pattern, thinking it'll go together pretty quickly.  I've always wanted to make one and these colors all coordinate so well together. 

So, that's my May ALYoF goal.  I also recently won a traveling stash box and will be having a fun giveaway for another blogger to be the new caretaker of it in the future.  Stay tuned, you don't want to miss it!