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.