Friday, 30 September 2011

Another Finish

Another one done!  This is one of the tic-tac-toe quilts, from blocks I won last year at the block lotto.  I took the final 15 blocks and assembled them with a simple sashing.  The backing on this quilt is polar fleece - nice and soft.  To keep it that way, I did very light quilting, outlining each block and stitching in the ditch along each border & sashing strip.

This was my UFO for September, finished right on time.  I also finished another UFO (the August number) this month, so it's been a good month on the UFO front.

Of course, since it's the end of the month, it's also time to report on the monochromatic challenge.  This month was green.  Do you think it counts, if the only fabric I added to these blocks was green & white?  My work is monochromatic, even if the quilt isn't  :)  Maybe not.  I'll have to call a pass on the monochromatic challenge for this month.

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Sleight of Hand

It's done!  This quilt is my "Sleight of Hand".  The blocks are card trick blocks, made with no triangles.  Then set on point with alternating blocks.  It started here, back in Feb 2010, and is finally quilted and bound now.  The card trick blocks were really quick and easy to make, especially making them without triangles.  Then I sort of defeated that, by planning the tiny little squares in the sashing.  The quilt has been waiting in my closet for about a year, for me to get around to finishing it off.

It seemed logical to continue the card-trick theme on the back of the quilt.  One large card trick block, using the same construction technique.I'm starting to really like pieced backings.

Once it was basted last week, I quilted it with a diagonal crosshatch - and the backing is actually squared up too.  The top thread is cream, and the bottom is a variegated rainbow thread.  I thought the colours were too much for the front of the quilt, but they work on the back and add a bit of interest there.

This was my August quilt for the UFO challenge, so I'm getting caught up - a bit anyway.  Let's not look at the ones still to do for Jan, Feb, and Sept :)

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Moving on

I've been working steadily on my star quilt for a couple of weeks now.  But it's almost the end of the month, and I really want to finish at least one quilt for the UFO challenge.  So I gathered my nerve, shifted my sewing table 3-4 inches farther away from the design wall (about all the space I had), and tackled the quilting on one of my tic-tac-toe quilts.

I backed this one with polar fleece - I've had it for years, and it was the perfect colour for the green tic-tac-toe.  I didn't add any batting, because I think the fleece will be more than warm enough.  This quilt is *so* soft and flexible, I love the feel of it.  To keep it that way, I decided on very light quilting around each block.

I managed to complete all the quilting without knocking the star off the design wall!  Next up, binding, and I may even get this one done before Friday.

Monday, 26 September 2011

Design Wall Monday - Sept 26

My design wall continues to hold my 1.5" squares.  More and more, every day.  However, I have finally reached the point where I can start putting some of this together.  That means I can worry less about someone (or some cat) coming in and knocking all my hard work off the wall.

It doesn't look much like a star right now, as I've started assembling chunks and the spacing is all off.  But I don't think I've lost any pieces yet.  I'm putting together 4-patch, then 16-patches, and I may go as far as 64-patches before I start on the background, but I haven't decided yet.

My entire sense of scale has been altered by this quilt.  I needed to make a square for a friendship quilt yesterday, and it was to be 9.5" unfinished.   So I planned the block, and started assembling.  The 4 quadrants weren't too bad, and I even used some of my 1.5" squares for the star.  But when I put it all together, it looked gigantic.  After working with all those little pieces, and making 16-patches that measure all of 4" finished, it was like I had forgotten what 9" looks like. In any event, the square is complete and ready to send out.

Check out Judy's blog to see what other quilters have on their design walls today.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Block of the Month - Sept

The Blogger's Block of the Month starts today!  Jackie sent us over to see Sherri at A Quilting Life to find the first month's block.  Each of the bloggers who are designing blocks are using the same palette of fabric, a gorgeous set of fabrics from Kaffe Fassett Collective.

I've chosen to go my own way however - mostly so I can use up some stash doing this BOM.  I've had this dark in my stash for a while now, waiting for the right quilt.  I guess I'll find out this year whether this was the "right" one.  Here is my block for this month.

Sherri was kind enough to suggest some options for colour arrangement in her block, and I decided to restrict mine to 4 of the 6 colours I've chosen for this project.  The missing colours are a blue and purple - you may see them next month.

Stash Report - Sept 25

Not much activity in the stash this week.   3 yards out, for the backing for my indigo quilt, and nothing in.

I did make a lot of progress on the itty bitty squares quilt, however.  The final 2 points are laid out, so I can start creating some pieces that are larger than 1.5" to put it together.

Totals for this year:
Overall, 21.75 yards in, 67.25 yards out.
Net for the year:  45.5 yards out.

Check out Judy's blog to see what other quilters have done with their stash this week.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Still going

Another couple of days, and the next part of the star is pieced.  I still have some arranging to do, to get the light -> dark flow a bit smoother.  But progress continues to be made.

I am making a lot of use of my digital camera, and the photo editting feature on my computer.  I haven't decided if I think that's cheating or not, but it is certainly making it easier to tell if the shading is really correct.  There's been a lot of back and forth, up and down stairs between the computer and the sewing room this week.  It would be nice if the camera had a black & white option in the special features, but apparently it doesn't.

In between playing with little tiny squares, I've managed to baste one of my quilts.  But I realized that my sewing table is too close to the design wall to quilt it safely.  I'll end up with all the bits on the floor if I try, so I need to get the star moved along to the next stage before I start quilting.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Making Progress

The design wall is making progress this week.  I now have all 4 main points complete.  The picture isn't great, but I think you can see where it's going.

I started sewing some of the squares into pairs, and then into 4-patch blocks.  I may regret this, because it's making the next 4 points really hard to visualize. But I didn't have much choice since my design wall really isn't big enough to hold all this.  I think I'll stop at the 4-patches, and start placing the next points.  Then I can hopefully merge it all together when they are done.

In the meantime, the batting I need to quilt my next 2 quilts is in the closet - behind that door which has the design wall tacked to it.  I didn't plan that very well :(  I'm hoping to sneak in there soon, without knocking all the squares off the wall, so that I can baste the next quilts and get them ready for quilting.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Design Wall Monday - Sept 19

My design wall has gone through a few transformations this week.  Last week, it looked like this.  A random assortment of many-coloured squares.  1.5" squares, that is.  Which means that a reasonably sized quilt is going to take upwards of 1600 individually cut and sewn pieces.  Maybe I should have done the math before I started on this adventure :)

During the week, it went through this phase.  I decided I liked the idea of a star, graduating from light to dark.  I plotted out an eight-pointed star based on square blocks and came up with an arrangement that I think works.

I played with the idea of a single colour for each star point, but decided that wasn't going to work.  Mostly because I don't have enough of eight different colours to make a rainbow star.

So now my design wall looks like this.  I think I've settled on a design, and here are the first 2 points for an eight-pointed star.  Unfortunately, the wall is not large enough to hold the entire star in raw form.  It's about 48 blocks across, so 72" roughed out with 1.5" squares. I'll have to work on it in pieces and wait until all the points are done before I can see it all together.

In the meantime, off the design wall I've been working on another tic-tac-toe quilt.  This one will use up the rest of the blocks I won last year.  It's ready for basting now, so I hope to get that done this week if I can make time for it.

Check out Judy's blog to see what other quilters have on their design walls this week.

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Stash Report - Sept 18

I've been plugging away on some UFO blocks this week.  Tidying my stash was great incentive to clear some stuff out.  Not a great deal of usage, but it's heading in the right direction.

2 yard - green tic-tac-toe
1/4 yard - binding for sleight of hand
So 2.25 yards out this week, and nothing in (unless you count the 3 rolls of batting I bought, so that I can finish some of these quilts)

Totals for this year:
Overall, 21.75 yards in, 64.25 yards out.
Net for the year:  42.5 yards out.

Check out Judy's blog to see what other quilters have done with their stash this week.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

New Project

Do I need a new project?  About like I need a hole in my head.  But will I let that stop me?  Not on your life.  I stumbled across this Block of the Month  project today, thanks to Amy's Creative Side blog, and I think I am going to jump in with both feet, and maybe a prayer or two.  Jackie has some lovely fabrics chosen, or you can pick your own (I can see some stash leaving my closet already).

So come along and join us if you like.  Click on the compass to find your way.

Canton Village Quilt Works

Monday, 12 September 2011

Design Wall Monday - Sept 12

This is what's on my design wall today.  It kind of looks like someone threw fabric at the wall and walked away.  Not sure where this is going to go, but these are some of my 1.5" squares, which I hope to turn into a quilt of some sort.

The idea of graduating the colours into each other isn't working out.  I think I'll ignore colours and look at the values next, and see what I can do with that.

To make myself feel better, here's the progress on my tic-tac-toe quilt.  All blocks assembled, and the backing is pieced and ready to go.    What looks like a blue border here is actually the backing.  I'm planning to leave the quilt without a border, and bind it in the same blue as the main grid.  I pieced the backing, using some additional tic-tac-toe blocks I received.

My sleight of hand is almost quilted, so this will I think be next in line.  I have just enough of the blue to bind the quilt, and I picked up batting yesterday so I'm good to go on this.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Stash Report - Sept 11

I was motivated this week, and made good progress on two quilts. Alternating between the blue stars and my tic-tac-toe blocks was definitely a good choice.  Both moved along really well, and I have some decent yardage to count today, as a result.

1 yard - blue quilt
1 yard - tic tac toe
2 yards - backing/binding for tic-tac-toe

That's 4 yards used this week.  And the best news is - the blue quilt center is done!  Just need to do the borders now.

Totals for this year:
Overall, 21.75 yards in, 62 yards out.
Net for the year:  40.25 yards out.

Check out Judy's blog for more stash reports.

Friday, 9 September 2011


Only 2 blue stars left to go!  Bribery works well.  I tell myself I can sew some of another quilt, after I make 2 blocks.  So things are moving along.  I have 5 rows complete put together.  row 6 is halfway.  And row 7 is missing the last 2 blocks.  I have to admit that I won't be sad to see the end of these blocks.

My bribery quilt is actually the UFO for this month, from Judy's UFO Challenge.  These poor little tic-tac-toe blocks were won a year and a half ago from the block lotto, so it's about time they see the light of day again.  This is step one of the assembly.  The plan is to take this large square, and divide it up just like it's another one of those tic-tac-toes.  Hopefully I gave myself enough room to play between the rows, to get a decent "wonky" cut for the strips.

I'm having a lot of fun with this one, and it's making a really nice break from the detail of the blue stars.  I should finish both quilts around the same time, at the rate they are going.  So, in the meantime I'm preparing for the next one.  Really, I should be thinking about actually quilting some of the current projects.  I think the next quilt I'm planning is going to have a lot of "prep" time, so I should be able to do some quilting while I'm contemplating the layout for this one.  Here is what it looks like so far.

11 stacks of 1.5" squares.  I think there's about 100 squares in each stack That means1100 square inches, which is a quilt about 30x35.  I'd like something lap sized, so I guess I have a lot more scraps to cut up.

Monday, 5 September 2011

Design Wall Monday - Sept 5

My design wall looks a lot like it did 2 weeks ago. The only difference is, the flowers have been replaced by curved rails this time.  I did get some quilting done - the Fibonacci Spiral is ready for binding.  Unfortunately, my August UFO is still waiting to be quilted.  At least it got basted.

I'm not feeling the love for the blue quilt right now, so I'm thinking about starting something new.  My sewing room is a disaster, after pulling scraps for the rails, and piecing the backing for the Sleight of Hand.  So I have a few options to get moving again.
  1. Bite the bullet and cut the next stage of the blue quilt.  
  2. Quilt the sleight of hand.
  3. work on the black & white quilt
  4. clean & organize the sewing room
I'm thinking it might be #4 - in the process of which I can maybe pull a set of scraps for a new quilt.  I'd really like to do a watercolour - but I don't think I have enough florals for that to work out.  I tend more towards tone on tone.  Or I could pull my greens, for Judy's September monochromatic challenge.

I'm off to try to get motivated, before the kids get up.  Check out Judy's blog to see what other quilters have on their walls today.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Stash Report - Aug 28

Backing for Sleight of Hand and Fibonacci Spiral - 2 yards
Curved rails for block lotto - 3/4 yards
Binding for Fibonacci Spiral - 1/4 yard

So that's 3 yards out, and nothing in this week.

This is my contribution to the block lotto for this month.  Fun, easy batik blocks.  Come on over and join us!

Totals for this year:
Overall, 21.75 yards in, 58 yards out.
Net for the year:  36.25 yards out.

Check out Judy's blog to see how other quilters have done this week with their stash.