4th quarter Finish a Long

Adrianne at On the Windy Side hosts a quarterly challenge to finish up our WiPs.  I’m joining in an attempt to get on top of what I should finish up so I can move on.

Round Trip Quilt Progress

  1. Jennifer’s Round Trip Quilt addition
  2. Meadow Quilt
  3. Carpenter’s Star Quilt to demo quilting
  4. Boy Baby Gift
  5. Girl Baby Gift
  6. Finally finish the real world red & white quilt!!
  7. Make the bag from the hexies I sewed this summer
  8. Paper Pieced patterns x3
  9. Table Runner & Placemat pattern
  10. Stash & Dash bag

If I can do this before Christmas, I am completely impressed with my future self!

Round Trip Quilts, round 1

I am part of the Round Trip Quilts group that formed from the New Blogger Group that Plum and June does every year.  We are 8 ladies from the US and Canada that will be making round robin quilts over the next year.  We just finished up the first round of the round robin.

I had the fortune to start on Kim’s quilt.  Kim blogs at Ties That Bind Quilting.  Kim explains the start of her quilt in this blog post, Introducing Round Trip Quilts.  Her inspiration is a color story, and she sent quite a few bright, saturated, and (in my opinion) pretty awesome blocks blocks to start her more modern round robin.  You can see what I received below:

Round Trip Quilts, Round 1
It was such a bright, cheery palette that I just stared at it for awhile.  I had a hard time trying to decide what to add to it that would make sense and be appropriate for her quilt.  Adding on to someone else’s quilt is a big responsibility!  I’d never felt quite this challenged when making my own work, but I was nervous to do something Kim wouldn’t like.

I kept going back and forth about what to add, and then I would second guess all my ideas.  So, I decided to start by pulling fabric and move on from there.

Round Trip Quilts, round 1

When I asked Kim’s opinion on Instagram (she is tiesthatbindquilting), she said she liked the blue streamers that are second from the bottom and the top purple and pink AMH the best.

I moved on to more research, stalking her pinterest account and researching tons of blocks.

Then, one afternoon I was going through my quilting books trying to decide which ones to keep and which ones to find new homes for, and saw the cover of “Fresh Quilting” by Malka Dubrawsky*. That sewing machine cover on the top right just seemed like the perfect fit for what I was looking for!

Fresh Quilting by Malka Dubrawsky
I started chopping up my chosen fabrics into squares, and adding the sashing.  Once I started, it was like I couldn’t stop!  It was such a relief to figure out what I wanted to do.

Round Trip Quilts, Round 1

I debated assembling the blocks.  I would have sewn together the sections on the left side of my block, to my block, but the sizing didn’t quite work out and I didn’t want to cut any blocks yet because someone later might make something that fits better.

Round Trip Quilts, Round 1

Mostly, I was just excited that my block looks like it fits in when Elizabeth from Green Cheese Quilting pulls it out of the envelope!

Round Trip Quilts, Round 1

If you want to see more, Round Trip Quilts has a Flickr group and you can follow us on Instagram using #RoundTripQuilts!

The full list of members is below:
Heather at QA Creations
Leanne at Devoted Quilter
Kim at Ties That Bind Quilting
Liz at Green Cheese Quilting
Mary at See Mary Quilt
Christina at WIPs and Tuts
Jennifer at Never Just Jennifer
Chelsea Huckins at Patch the Giraffe


Linking up to: Fabric Frenzy Friday @ Ft. Worth FabricWhoop Whoop Fridays @ Confessions of a Quilt AddictTGIFFAnything Goes MondayFabric Tuesday @ Quilt StoryWiP Wednesday @ Freshly PiecedLet’s Bee Social Wednesday @ SewFreshQuilts

* I’ve signed up to be an Amazon Affiliate.  I won’t get rich anytime soon because it gives me less than $0.50 if you buy a book that I link to (within the 24 hour window that you click on it), but I’m hoping that it may help at least offset my web hosting fees.  It doesn’t change your price to purchase, so if you do decide to buy any books I link to, thanks for the support!

Around the World Blog Hop

Last week I was invited by Sarah of Berry Barn Designs to participate in the Around the World Blog Hop.  As a fellow military spouse, it seems appropriate to share in the tour because of all the places we’ve been and could end up.  I’m so happy she thought of me, and now it’s my turn to answer the interview questions and to pass the torch 🙂

Schnitzel & Boo Mini Swap

What am I working on?

Or, is the better question what am I not working on?

– I owe my August Block to Toni for Stash Bee Hive 12.  I have some black solid fabric now, so I better get started.

– I am starting a round robin bee with some amazing ladies from the Plum and June New Blogger Hop 2014.  I think I finally decided on the design, so now I need to sew it because I’m supposed to mail it off September 1st.

– I entered 4 items in the Sandhills Quilt Guild 2014 show.  Three are quilts and need hanging sleeves attached.  One of the quilts needs the binding finished.  The bag I’m entering needs the lining sewn in.  All this has to be done so I can drop them off by September 12th.

– I started the Spell it with Moda quilt about 6 months after everyone else finished theirs.  We finally made a room for my daughter, and it will look perfect on the wall.  I am halfway done with B and C so far.

– I need to make my guild name tag now that I have the embroidered part.

– I also started a shirt today.  I have too many quilty deadlines, so I needed to sew something for me!  It’s Sewaholic’s Belcarra Blouse, part 3.  One of these days I’ll get around to showing off part 2, and now this one I made today.

How does my work differ from others?

That is a hard question in quilting because everyone’s work is already so varied.  I think it’s hard to truly have such a unique style that someone looks at your quilt and immediately knows that it was yours.  There are a few quilters that I can think of that pull it off, but most of us are not that way.  I think my style is still developing.  I started out very traditional, but am moving more toward the modern side.  I love bright, modern fabrics.  But I also love the detailed traditional quilt blocks.  I think my style is still developing.  I love all the different styles out there too much to stick to just one!

Tombstone  (Cora's Quilts Spring Sampler)

Why do I create?

I love to sew.  I don’t know why or where it came from, but I love the satisfaction that comes from sewing.  I love picturing what I want it to look like, and then making it.  I’m also very picky, so I like that I have control over what I’m making.  Then, there is also sanity.  Sewing calms me, it’s my version of zen.  If I haven’t sewn in awhile, I feel almost antsy.  It’s my refuge in my stay at home mom life.

Spinnaker Quilt

How does my process work?

I get inspiration from everywhere.  The roofline on an old mansion, a tile floor, instagram, blogs, pinterest, antique quilts, fabric.  I have a million ideas in my head waiting for the time to come out through my hands into my sewing machine.  I decide what to actually make based on more practical concerns.  What do I actually need?  I need a quilt for my queen sized bed – I’m working on the Real World Red & White Quilt to fill that need.  If my daughter needs leggings, I make leggings.  If I’m tired of my current clothes situation, I will make a shirt.  I have so many projects in the queue that I just adjust the order for what actually makes sense to create.

Oliver & S Class Picnic Shorts

On a more practical level, once I get an idea for a quilt into my head, I will generally sketch it on paper.  If I plan to turn it into a tutorial or pattern, I will put it into the computer.  I generally leave it black and white.  I do color tests with the actual fabric by arranging them so that they touch in as close a manner to the pattern as possible.  At that point, I usually am happy with the arrangement and proceed to cutting and sewing.  I like to chain stitch and do multiple blocks at the same time.  However, I find that if I cut out an entire quilt at once, I am generally too bored with it by the time I’m done cutting to actually sew it.  I work best by sewing about 10 blocks at a time (depending on size or intricacy, bigger or more intricate blocks will be fewer than that).  Once I have the top done, I am generally tired of it so I often leave off the border and wait months to piece together a back.  Quilted tops have sat waiting for binding for as long as a year.  I’m really good at finishing the top, but the back and binding can and will linger for awhile.

Finished Pandora's Box

Please check out the others Sarah linked to today: Heidi from Fabric Mutt and Mara from Secretly Stitching.

And now I am going to pass the torch to the ladies of my new round robin bee.  Once I see who wants to play, I will update with their info.  Thanks for stopping by!

Welcome to QA Creations!

Welcome to QA Creations!

QA Creations Announcement

The first piece of news is that I have changed my blog name.

A lifetime ago, I chose Bobbins and Bullets.  It made sense at the time.  I was in the Army, deployed to Afghanistan.  My husband was deployed to Iraq.  I was sewing for sanity, and wanted a blog to maintain a link (no matter how small) to the “real world”.

The blog was just something I had – mostly for me to document what I was doing so I wouldn’t forget what I made.  I barely posted once a month.  Once I redeployed and got home, I got a puppy, was busy at work, and continued to not post very regularly.

Fast forward a couple years, and I was getting out of the Army to stay at home with my new daughter.  Once again, I was sewing to keep my sanity, and I discovered that I needed the online sewing world as my link to the “real world” as a new stay at home mother even more than I had needed it back when I was thousands of miles away from home.

Now, I have an active, determined, amazing (almost) 16 month old daughter.  I’m starting to take quilts from others to finish on my long arm.  I want to continue sharing my patterns and tutorials.  I’m having a lot of fun with bees and swaps.  I’m ready to be a contributing member of this community instead of just a lurker.

But, I’m convinced my name was holding me back.  Some people were taken aback, some people left comments that led me to believe they thought I was some kind of gun nut.  Most people never read the explanation, or noticed that the sewing machine in my logo was Army ACU colored.

I don’t want to scare people anymore.  I want a name that reflects my current life, not what I used to do.

QA Creations will be my creative blog.  The QA comes from Quilts Actually – which is my long arm and pattern blog and business.

I will continue to post about sewing and quilting.  I still love both traditional and modern quilts, and probably fall into the modern traditional camp for most of my own work.  I still love to make clothes for my daughter.  I’m starting to make clothes for me, and trying to get over the body issues involved with posting pictures of myself on here.  I’m also starting to make bags and expand what I sew.

I hope you enjoy the new QA Creations, and stick around to see what happens!

As an admin note, when I transferred the blog, a lot of my old pictures got messed up.  I will be slowly updating all the pictures on my old posts, so please have patience with me.  If there is a post you are interested in seeing, let me know and I’ll put that post higher in the queue for finishing up.

Finally, so this post isn’t entirely picture less, below are the blocks I worked on in May.  It was a big piecing month.  I’ve got the bug to make some clothes for me, so we’ll see how much of that I get done in June.

June Fresh Sewing Day


Thanks for reading!



Linking to: Fresh Sewing Day @ Lily’s QuiltsAnything Goes MondayWiP Wednesday @ Freshly PiecedLet’s Bee Social Wednesday @ SewFreshQuiltsNeedle and Thread Thursday @ My Quilt InfatuationWhoop Whoop Fridays @ Confessions of a Quilt AddictFabric Frenzy Friday @ Ft. Worth Fabric, and Sewjo Saturday at My Go-Go Life

Anything Goes Monday

Welcome to Anything Goes Monday!

My name is Heather, and I have the honor of hosting Anything Goes Monday for Marelize today.  I am a mom to my (almost) 15 month old daughter, who loves to sew and quilt!  While being a mom takes up more of my time than sewing, sewing keeps me sane.  I have been known to take my Singer Featherweight on more than one vacation, because I can’t stay away from sewing that long 🙂

I usually have all sorts of projects on my to-do list, from piecing quilts, paper piecing, and designing patterns to sewing clothing for my daughter and myself.  Some examples of my projects are below.  If you like what you see, please follow my blog or check out my instagram @bobbinsandbullets!

Bobbins and Bullets Project overview May

Bottom Left: Spinnaker Quilt, Top Middle: Practice Lucky Stars, Bottom Middle: Starry Log Cabin, Right Middle: Baby Blazer, Bottom Right: January Lucky Stars

In addition to my personal sewing, I am a long arm quilter.  My Millennium can handle almost any quilt you can throw at it, so if you are wanting to reduce that stack of unquilted tops, please consider me!  

As an added bonus, if you contact me for long arm services and reserve a spot during the month of May, and mention you found me through Anything Goes Monday, I will take 15% off the long arm quilting fee!  

My long arm

I also have my first pattern up on Craftsy!  The Square Dance Block is a paper pieced block that anyone can do – whether you have paper pieced before or not!  My paper piecing tutorial for the Square Dance Block will guide you every step of the way.  The pattern for an 8 inch finished block is free this month.  In June, I will be publishing the full version of the pattern with multiple block sizes.  

Square Dance Block Tutorial
Kaleidoscope Block quilt layout


stitch by stitch

Now it’s your turn to share with us what you’ve been busy with!

1. Link up ANY recent blog posts, it can be one or more, but PLEASE do not share blog posts you might have linked up in the past.
2. Somewhere in your blog post, you must link back here to my blog, OR grab the ‘anything goes’ button for you sidebar.
3. Try to visit at least a few of the other blogs linked, the whole point of having a party is to connect, share and maybe get a few new followers…remember to leave a comment to let them know you stopped by!

May Fresh Sewing Day

I can’t believe it’s already May Fresh Sewing Day!  The last month flew by….  I did mostly quilty work last month, but May will be starting with some clothing sewing.
May Fresh Sewing Day mosaic

Top Row: Teaching quilting to my mom – 3 generations quilting together! (links to tutorials in blog post).

Middle Row: Left – Star Fruit Paper Piecing Pattern Testing, Right – Square Dance Block Tutorial (May is my month in the Stash Bee, so you can find the post for Stash Bee here).

Bottom Row: Dresden Plate for Stash Bee Hive 12 (tutorial here), Double Pinwheel test block for 4×5 Modern Bee (tutorial here)

Thanks for stopping by!

Guest Post at The Business of Machine Quilting!

In addition to my personal quilts and baby clothes making endeavors, I am also a professional long arm quilter.  I keep my business website at Quilts Actually, and that is where I show off my competed quilting, but this news was too exciting to limit to just that website.  

If you love quilting, I’m sure you have heard of Angela Walters.  She has a relatively new blog about “The Business of Machine Quilting” to help other machine quilters.  It is a great resource, and I am honored  and excited to have a guest post there today on finding inspiration as a quilter.  Clicking on the button will take you to the post!

Back to Basics

I originally started this blog as a way to document what I made, what I was doing at the time and my thinking behind what I was making.  I’ve lost sight of that.  In an effort to be active, I turned it into a to-do list that is boring and offers no insight.  I don’t even like to read my own entries, as opposed to my old entries that I look back on fondly and reflect on my life then.  So, this is to remind me of why I even started this blog and get off the production treadmill and focus more on the process.

Great Giveaway

Annemarie from Gen X quilters currently has an amazing giveaway going on right now for the EQ7 software.  http://www.genxquilters.com/2011/11/electric-quilt-7-review-and-software.html?showComment=1322425878215#c7777702639946613356

Rebecca from “Our Busy Little Bunch” also has a great giveaway for the pink bundle of the new Pear Tree line.  So pretty!  It would be perfect for the girl baby blanket I need to make!  http://www.ourbusylittlebunch.com/2011/11/friday-fun-giveaway-sponsored-by.html