Monday, May 28, 2018

May UFO Finish

It's not the one I had planned to finish, but I did manage to squeak out a UFO finish for May.  This quilt is made of all the leftovers from a Kaffe Fassett quilt I made.That one isn't quilted yet, but I took all the leftover strips and put them together to make this quilt, with a few solids I had in my stash to round it out to donation size.

Well, "all" isn't quite true.  A while back, I made this little quiltie with the first set of leftover strips.

And it looks like the main quilt was finished back in 2016, so it's been waiting a while to be quilted. It is on the list for this year, so hopefully it will come up one month soon and I can get moving on it.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

PEI Modern Guild Mystery

It's done!  The deadline is May 31 to enter the draw for the PEI guild mystery quilt along, and I managed to get the whole thing finished, quilted and bound in time!  I made two quilts, but this is the one that got finished. It's an almost-tradiational layout (the other will be more modern).  I needed to stretch the quilt to make it 70x50", so I moved the corner stars in from the sides and out from the top and bottom to accomplish this.

It took a few extra pieces to fill them out. And one re-working, after I rotated a piece in one of those blocks. Someone nicely pointed the error out to me, and then I promptly forgot about it until the quilt was half-done.  Fixing a block at that point was challenging, but had to be done.

I played around with custom quilting on this one. I had hoped to play with various relief designs, but my batting wasn't thick enough to give the look I hoped for, so I just went with a more overall fill instead.

The colour on these last photos is pretty bad - it seems to be trade-off I get when I turn off the flash to help accentuate the stitching lines.

Since I'm done in time, I'm linking up with the rest of the party at the PEI Modern Guild blog.

Sunday, April 29, 2018


Sometimes a vision just doesn't come out as planned. This project was going to be 2 quilts.  I fell in love with the turquoise print at a quilt shop, and bought it and a few friends. Got home, and realized I didn't have enough fabric, so I supplemented with some purple and turquoise from my stash.  I absolutely loved the colours, piled up on my table. But putting the quilt together, it's just a bit much, I think.

The other "half" of the project was triangles with dark stripes on the end - which was supposed to be a second quilt.  I carefully sized all my bits so they'd be the right dimensions to donate. But now I don't like either one in the original form.

My friends suggested combining them all, like I did for my practice sample a few months ago. So I tried that out.

I'm definitely much happier with this layout. It's still a lot of purple/turquoise, but the dark bands seems to help it.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

PEI Modern Guild mystery

These are two of my "not enough fabric" quilts from my retreat last weekend.  I arrived at retreat all set to assemble these quilts, since the reveal came out on the 1st.  But when I started to put it all together, I discovered I had completely messed up how one of the units was to be assembled, and I had cut my fabric incorrectly. And of course I didn't take any extra with me.

I thought I was stuck, and 2 projects were going back into the bag. But one other quilter had forgotten a part for her sewing machine, so she reached out to an attendee who hadn't arrived yet. And who, it turned out, just happened to be standing in the quilt shop that carries the fabric I needed.  She relayed a request for 2 half-yards of fabric (black and white Kona), and my retreat was saved!

These tops are my versions of the PEI Modern Guild mystery.  Changed up from the reveal, to make 2 tops that can be donated to Victoria's Quilts once they are quilted.  That may take a little while, because I have an urge to do some custom work on them.

No bonus points for spotting the error in the white one.  It's been pointed out already :) (fortunately before I got around to quilting this).

Friday, April 20, 2018

150 Canadian Wonen

At quilt retreat this weekend, and the theme is "I didn't bring enough fabric for this quilt". So far 3 out of 4 projects have hit that blockade. But this one I did manage to put together. It still needs borders, tomorrow. This is 80 out my 150 blocks from the 150 Canadian Women quilt project which started in 2016.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Single Girl Garden

Sometimes a plan just doesn't work out like you envisioned. I had these blocks from a Single Girl quilt, leftover from some repairs. Each of them had a small tear, where stitches were unpicked and the fabric damaged. I thought I could put them together, applique some flowers, and turn it into a garden quilt.  I also wanted to make sure it could end up as a donation, so I needed a bit more size than the blocks provided on their own. 

This is the result of that attempt. Not great, but hopefully cheerful enough to make someone happy.  A stormy day, raining Kaffe Fassett flowers down from the skies.

Because the flowers were appliqued with fusible, I quilted each of them heavily to make sure they would not lift off. The rest of the quilt is more lightly quilted, to try to keep it soft enough for snuggling.

Friday, April 13, 2018


A couple of years ago, I picked up a set of fruit & vegetable fabrics, from the free table at one of my guilds.  At the time, I knew I wanted to turn them into a jar quilt (something on my bucket list, but not something I wanted to actually go out and buy fabric for - so this was a perfect find).  They sat around for a while, until I needed a project to take to retreat last year.  I made more of the jars there, but ran out of fabric for the lids and background, so the blocks went into a box and languished for a while.

I finally pulled them back out for another retreat, added some fabric to replace the missing bits, found sashing fabric (a nice wood grain for the shelves) and trucked it all back to another retreat.

After sitting in the UFO closet for several months, I pulled it out last month and finished it, as part of my March finishing blitz. This will head out to Victoria's Quilts this month, where I hope it will find a good home.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

One-block Wonder

This is  a mini one block wonder I've been working on. I had a lovely fabric, with a very small repeat.  So I thought I'd turn it into a one block wonder, but in miniature since hte repeat was so small.

Turns out I made a slight miscalculation - the pattern repeated across, as well as done, so I ended up with some duplicate blocks in the end. But I went with it anyway. Then I took the opportunity to try out the 3-D cube effect in the result. The first picture is how I designed it - but I realized when I got home that all of my cubes were upside down/inside out.  So I turned it over.  Now the lighting is right for the cubes, but my lights are in the lower right  I suspect that will be the final layout/orientation anyway - because I am not unsewing any of this.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Giant Scrappy Swoon

It's DONE!

This quilt started as a quilt-along on the Quilting Board. A giant scrappy swoon block, made from 3" squares of fabric.  I dug into my purple and gold fabrics, and managed to get the center block completed.  Then I realized that a 76x76" top wasn't all that useful to me, so I added some borders to turn it into a rectangle that would fit my bed.

This was started in March 2015, and I finished the top in February 2016.

The backing was a saga in itself.  First attempt was the completely wrong size, because I forgot I'd added the borders to the quilt and didn't bother to check before making the backing.  Second attempt went much better, and resulted in the backing seen here. The purple/black stripes are arranged in a fibonacci sequence.  The gold stripes at the top are made from all of my gold scraps - sewn together randomly to make a strip of fabric long and wide enough for this border.

May 1 Update:
My April UFO (#5) was already done, so I pulled this one from the "missed" list for one of my UFO challenges, and decided to finish it up for this month.  And Bonus - it is the UFO drawn by Judy over at Patchwork Times for May. So a double finish :)  I'll pick one of my other misses - either my Kaffe quilt, or 150 Canadian Women - to finish this month instead.  And in the meantime, I'm linking up over at Patchworks Times.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

3D quilt

This quilt top comes from a class I took a year or 2 ago.  We made turned regular blocks into diamonds and created the 3-D blocks from those. The class included fabric for 1 block - which I managed to stretch to 2. Then they sat for months waiting for me to find other options to go along with the original fabric.

I finally pulled some out, took it to a retreat and made a few more blocks. The 3 9-patch blocks are where I got tired of doing the work to translate triangles into half-diamonds :)

I used an ombre fabric for the background, and matched it up (as best i could) to shade the same way the light is falling on the blocks - light in the upper right, and darkest in the lower left.  It's a nice lap size quilt, and now it just needs to be quilted - hopefully sometime this year as part of my UFO challenge.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

April UFOs

Well, how adorable is this.  Both of my UFO challenges picked the same number this month - #5. Which just happens to be an "extra" I finished in January.  So, an easy month (already done)?  Or do I pick a replacement?  Time will tell.

Giant Scrappy Swoon just needs binding now.  And Kaffe Jacob's Ladder has a backing ready, but it really wants custom quilting. I'm not making any commitments today, since I didn't finish last month's plan and I'm feeling a bit behind on customer work right now.  Maybe next week I'll have something more definitive than "something will probably get finished this month".

In the meantime, I'll just bask in the glory of my 3rd finish for March.  My scrappy pineapple quilt is complete and ready to be donated.  Quilted with a rainbow variegated thread, and my favourite "Swirls" pantograph.

And I love the flannel backing I found for it in my stash.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Guild Mystery Reveal

One of my guilds was doing a mystery this year, and I decided to play along. The mystery called for 5 colours, with very little guidance about the various relationships. One looked light a background fabric, based on colour sample given. So I picked a white fabric with coloured dots from my stash.  Then I pulled 4 more colours which matched the dots, thinking I would end up with a scrappy, colourful quilt.

Well, clue 1 came along, I started to regret my decision.  This block was not exactly what I was hoping for. 

But I persevered and played along for a few more months. There were some better successes in my choices, which actually used my background fabric in some pretty combinations.

Then the reveal came out.  That horrible bright yellow from clue 1 is actually a secondary background colour.  Um, No!  So, I considered tossing the whole thing, but I hate to give up. And the quilt was really pretty, when done with decent colours.

Instead, I figured I had enough fabric to replace the yellow with my original background colour.

I re-made clue 1, and a few other bits that used the yellow fabric, and here is my finished top.

Not wanting to waste the other blocks, I decided to turn them into a quiltie for the guild. Some baby girl will be bright and cheerful in this quilt.

And the other bits I replaced will keep a boy warm.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Blackford's Beauty

As I mentioned last time, I'm trying to push a few UFOs through the longarm in between customer work these days. This top was a block party project a couple of years ago. I provided the fabric and instructions for the block to the rest of the group, and they each made a block for me.  Plus my own, that made 12 blocks, which I think finished at 13" (they were a weird size).  The pattern is a variation on Blackford's Beauty which I found in a magazine.

I decided to set it with a narrow sashing and red corner stones to complete the diagonal lines in the block. Originally I had planned a piano key border from all the coloured fabrics, but when I tried that it seemed to heavy for the rest of the quilt. So I chopped it in half and turned it into this square border instead.

The quilt finished at 55x72", just a bit too big for Victoria's Quilts. So I backed it with some fabric I had on hand (a wide back, which I have no idea why I bought it originally, but it was the perfect colour for this quilt). A scrappy binding finished it off - it seemed appropriate for a scrappy quilt. And I'll donate it to Victims of Violence through one of my guilds next month.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018


In a quest to finally finish the quilt top that didn't fit the backing from a few weeks ago, I'm trying a new one.  Still a bit challenged - at this stage the backing measures 68x100".  I thought it was going to be 78x100, so I need to find another 10" of fabric somewhere. I have a few options, so hopefully I can stretch it far enough to fit my 91x106" top.  In the meantime, I'm trying to get some other UFOs onto the longarm.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Wreath number 2

Continuing the theme, here is another wreath I finished. The top was quilted before Christmas, but it got lost in the binding pile for a while, so I could focus on other projects.  Located, bound, and ready to hang next December. Now to find a storage location where I'll be able to locate at the end of the year.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Christmas Wreath

It's not exactly Christmas anymore, but I finsihed a Christmas wreath that has been sitting in my binding box for years.  When I first made it, I included a white border, but I was never happy with teh end result.

And then I quilted it in red thread, and was even less happy with it.  I got the binding half done, and gave up on the whole project. Into the box it went.

I pulled it out a couple of weeks ago, and decided it was time to fix it. At first, the plan was to unstitch all the quilting and try again, but after looking at it, I had a better idea.  I trimmed off all the white border and turned it into a quiltie - perfect size, 24x24".  Added a new binding and voila, a finish!

Friday, March 16, 2018

PEI Modern Guild Mystery - Step 7

At my last retreat, I got all caught up on my PEI Modern Guild mystery - both versions.  Clue 7 is the little tulip shapes.  I'm a little unsure about my colours - I wish we'd gotten more guidance in how to arrange our 12 fat quarters to best highlight the pattern. I like the large block in black, and the small block in white. Can't wait to see how it all comes together next month. 21 small blocks seems like an odd number, so the layout is going to be interesting, I'm sure.

Linking up with the PEI MQG.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

More Red and White

Maybe all this red and white will inspire me to finish my 150 Canadian Women quilt.  This fabric was given to me to make a charity quilt for Victoria's Quilts.  Apparently, the original owner ordered a kit, and received enough fabric to make the top once, and almost make a second version. 2 or 3 fabrics were replaced/supplemented in this quilt. And I had to add a little bit of white to finish it off. Then I added the top/bottom borders to bring it up to size for Victoria's Quilts. 

It's finished and donated now, so it looks like I missed getting a final photo after quilting.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Josh's Star

I was asked to do a short (10-minute) demo of a Jenny Doan pattern at quilt guild a few weeks ago.  So I went online and to hunt something up. I wanted something unique, that not everyone would have already seen, and I found this tutorial for "Josh's Star". It seems interesting, and easy to demo in a short period of time. so I decided to do that.

I had a layer cake that I won at a retreat which needed a project, and this seemed like the perfect choice.  So I dug out my black & whites, and created a set of samples for each stage of block construction. Then, I made 6 blocks into a small quilt so everyone could see what they looked like put together.

Once the demo was done, I sewed up the rest of the blocks at a retreat, and I have a quilt top ready for quilting.  It's the perfect size for Victoria's Quilts, so this quilt will birghten someone's day once I get it quilted.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Red & White Finish

This quilt became a top at a retreat in January. I tried to release it to a new home, but just couldn't let it go before it was quilted, so it came home from a Victoria's Quilts basting meeting, to be quilted here.  I finished that up, added white binding, and now it's off to find a forever home with someone who needs a comfort quilt.

The original pattern made 2 quilts - one called pinwheels, and one called bamboo. Since I didn't have enough of either fabric, I smushed them together to come up with this - perhaps "Pinwheels in the Bamboo".

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

March UFOs

I'm a bit behind figuring out the UFO challenges for March, since I've been away at retreat since the 1st of the month. But I checked them out and my goals for this month are:

#8 from Patchwork Times. That's Blackford's Beauty, which should be a nice quick finish, once I find a backing for it.  This was a block party quilt from a couple of years ago. I had planned to donate it to Victoria's Quilts, but it's a bit too big for that, which is why it ended up in the UFO pile for so long.  I'll get it quilted up and then find a home for it.

and #3 from APQ. That's my Kaffe Jacob's Ladder, for which I have backing purchased. I just need to piece it.  This one is for me (not that I need any more quilts - but I love this one). It's "only" about a year and a half old.

So this should be an easy month for me. I'm going to aim to get both of these done this month.

I find it interesting that thus far - 3 months in and 6 numbers drawn, neither of my two challenges has overlapped with the other in numbers.  I wonder how long that can go on?

Monday, March 5, 2018


It's not the UFO I was aiming for originally, but every UFO finish is a good finish.  I finally succeeded in matching up my new backing with an old UFO. It is now quilted, bound, and ready for use.

The front of this quilt is a UFO I've had sitting around since Feb 2014, so it was a full 4 years in the making.  After my last post, I finished adding strips to 2 sides of the quilt to make it square, and adding 2 borders to it.  A quick test drive and it looks like a perfect fit. The yellow border should align closely with the outer sashing of the green quilt.

One reason this quilt top has been a UFO for so long was trying to figure out how to quilt it. I had visions of custom quilting, but could never settle on a design I liked. The advantage of making it 2-sided - custom quilting is now out of the picture, because that would never look right on both sides.

I picked a nice pantograph (spiral bubbles) and quilted it up over a couple of days (it's a BIG quilt, and that pantograph is denser than I realized).  All done now, complete with 2-sided binding.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

UFO 2 : Krista 0

The best laid plans ...

And when they aren't well laid, they go even further awry.  Attempt #2 to use the new swoon backing I made involved this quilt, with some added borders.  I measured it at 79", so adding coloured borders (5" on each side) and a large black border would bring it out to about 105". That would be perfect to quilt as a backing for the 96" swoon top. Then trim the extra-wide black borders, and I'd have a reversible quilt.

I headed to a sew night with the fabric and a plan.  I didn't relish the thought of fighting with the whole top 16 times to attach all those borders, so I decided to mitre them. That way, I just dealt with the smaller strips until the very last step.

As I started to attach the first border section to the quilt, it didn't fit!  Well, actually it did fit, but just barely. I had used width of fabric (which was 43") and attached on diagonal, so I should have had about 84" - plenty to fit my 79" top with some left over.  So, I dragged the whole thing out on the floor, borrowed a measuring tape, and checked my measurements.  79x83"  Oops. That's not a square quilt.

Changing direction on the fly, I decided that was OK, I would not mitre the borders, but they should still fit since I had enough "extra" on the short edge to cover the length needed for a square corner.  I continued to sew my heart out, and got all the borders attached.  Then I laid it out for a photo session, and started really thinking about my plan.  Backing for a 96" quilt.  I now had an 83" quilt with 10" of coloured border (5" on each side) - which made 93" before the black started. And the other quilt is only 96" in total. Which means I'd have 1.5" of black outside the coloured border on two side (and close to 5 on the other two, which was what I wanted originally).

I tried desperately to convince myself that I could live with this. But driving home I realized that I could have easily squared up the top by adding 2" to each side (I had that fabric with me).  At the time someone suggested cutting the wide side down, but I refused to do that as it would have removed some of the pattern. But for some reason I never thought of adding fabric to square it at that point.

So, during my 15 minute drive home, I figured out that if I squared it up, put only 1 coloured border and ended with black, I'd have a much better match for the "other half" this was trying to match up to.  So, before I could change my mind, I grabbed my seam ripper and the quilt when I got home and removed the borders.  And now it awaits more sewing to put them back on in a different configuration.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Attempt #2 to clear out a UFO

After the failure to match my new giant swoon backing to its intended top, I dug through my UFO pile looking for something else that was close to the right size. This top came up - it's been sitting waiting since Feb 2014, so it's about time I got it out of the closet.

It is 79" square, so will need a couple of borders to fill it out to the 95" backing I have for it.  I have no more of the original fabrics, but there is a nice blue, yellow and a purple in my stash that might work. The binding (which I actually cut in advance) can be a border, and I'll finish it off with black (and bind with that, too).

There are the two options - I think I'll probably go ahead with the blue and yellow, as it seems a bit brighter.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Finishing UFOs - or trying to

This swoon quilt was the January pick, on the APQ UFO challenge this year. I ignored it, as the Patchwork Times pick was big/hard enough.  But it's been gnawing at my brain, so I finally decided I should at least figure out a backing for it. I really didn't want to buy any fabric, since the top is entirely from scraps.

First I pulled out some gold/purple fabrics. But that would have cleaned me out of those colours, and the quilt is already pretty strong in those colours.  So I went back to the closet, realized I have a ton of green that I really need to use up, and decided that a 2-sided, completely different, reversible quilt would be the way to go.

Foolishly, I didn't pull the top out at the time. I just dug into my memory of the giant scrappy swoon, knew it was a square quilt and pretty big. So I decided the squares must have been 4" each, and the quilt finished at 96x96".  Perfect. I designed a back for it, using 4 large swoon blocks (40" each), and some sashing.  That went to my last retreat, and I was thrilled when I finished it while I was there.

Then, while telling my fellow quilters about the plan, I dug up the old blog post on this top. And discovered that it is 91x106". Completely not what I thought.  I forgot that I made it into a rectangle by adding borders. And that its original size was only 72" square.  So this new "back" is completely wrong for this particular quilt.

Back to the drawing board I guess (and now I have another UFO to add to the pile).

Thursday, February 22, 2018

150 Canadian Women blocks

This is what 150 6" blocks looks like.  All done, as planned.  Judy pulled #1 for the February UFO challenge, and I knew there was no way it would get finished. But finishing the blocks seemed achievable, given the retreats I had planned for this month. And there is it - all done. Now to figure out my layout. Sashing fabric already chosen. But I need my design wall back before I can start laying things out.