Monday, 26 May 2014

Design Wall Monday - May 26

I have been on a finishing kick lately - finally finished the binding on the 4 quilts that have been sitting on my ottoman for the last several months.  So there isn't much on my design wall this week, but I put up a quilt that just needs a border.  I signed up to finish this one before the last modern guild meeting of the year, so I'd better get cracking.

I struggled with borders for this. The print on the left was my original plan, but when the top was done I didn't think it worked. Too busy. So I spent some time hemming and hawing at the shop, staring at all the other fabrics in the line to find something else.

I fell in love with the orange (since they didn't have the blue I really wanted). But orange?  So I think this the final decision - narrow black, 2" orange, and wide print borders.

I have a few other finishes to share today, too.  This one was a challenge quilt at a retreat I attended last November.  Finally finished the binding on it, so it can go off to Victoria's quilts, after I show it off at guild tonight.

Then we have my bear paw quilt.  This poor little guy has been almost 2 years in the making. The top went together pretty quickly, and even the border didn't slow me down too much.  But it took me over 6 months to get it off the "to quilt" list.  That happened last July.  Then I didn't have enough of the fabric I wanted to use for binding. Have you ever had that problem?  You have a vision in mind, and when it doesn't work out for whatever reason, finding an alternate is almost impossible.  Finally I bit the bullet, picked a gold that was close (but not exactly) the same as that used on the narrow borders. And now it is finally bound and ready to use!  So bright and cheerful. I think I'll replace the quilt in the spare room tonight.

These two are charity quilts.  One is the leftover blocks from the New Year's Eve mystery.  I made 2 quilts, and this is the second one.  And the other is a scrappy challenge from Judy

And speaking of Judy, there are lots more design walls over at Patchwork Times today.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Stash Report - May 25

It's been a productive week around here.  I keep meaning to post my finishes, but I've been getting distracted. So, here are a few of my projects from this week.  Finished binding 3 other tops, but the fabric for those is already counted, since I count the binding when it is first attached to the quilt, not when it's stitched down on the back.

I finished my mystery top, and got it quilted.

6 yards for the top
4 yards for the back

Made 2 baby quilts for my neighbors, who just had twins.  One boy and one girl, so I made coordinating quilts in pink & blue. Not quite finished in this picutre, but I haven't taken a photo of the completed tops yet.

5 yards for tops
2.5 yards for backs

So that's 17.5 yards out this week.

8 yards came home with me yesterday, for a new quilt. But that actually leaves me 9 1/2 yards in the black for this week!

Stash totals for the year:
410 1/4 yards in
95 yards out
Total: 315 1/4  yards in

 Drop by Judy's blog for more stash reports.

Monday, 19 May 2014

Design Wall Monday

I have a finished top on my wall this morning.  This is a mystery quilt for my guild this year. The meeting is Wednesday, so I'm right on schedule.  Ideally, it will be quilted and bound by the June meeting, but that is still to be determined :)

I also have a finish today.  I finally finished sewing the binding on "A Little Diversion", so I can now call this one complete. 

My cat already thinks it is hers. She was "helping" me bind last night, and I noticed how well she matches the quilt.  So maybe she's right about who it should belong to.

Drop by Judy's blog for more design walls today.

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Stash Report

I finished a quilt this week! My pink star is now fully quilted and bound.  Binding isn't on in this photo- I'll get a better picutre in the daylight tomorrow.  I really like the way this one turned out, and I had a blast quilting it.
4 yards out for back and binding

And a top.
This one's for my son.  I was going to repair his current quilt, but when I started to do that, I realized just how much of it was falling apart, so I decided a new quilt was a better option. Since the one he has is the 3rd quilt I ever made, I'm pretty sure my skills have improved since then and he's entitled to a newer one :)
7 yards used

And the back for another one.
The top was done at a retreat in early April. I finally decided to continue with my original plan for a double-sided quilt, even though I used up more fabric than intended on the front.  I had the cream from another quilt, used the dark border fabric for the center, and I had bought a backing fabric for it earlier so I used that for the outer borders on the back. It will probably also end up being the binding when I'm done.
5 yards used

Total, 16 yards out.

Of course, there was a sale at the quilt store today. I went with the best of intentions - to buy backing for my son's quilt.   I came home with a bit more than that.
16 yards in.

Hey, look at that. I broke even this week!!

Stash totals for the year:
402 1/4 yards in
77 1/2 yards out
Total: 324 3/4  yards in

 Drop by Judy's blog for more stash reports.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014


 I finished quilting my pink diamond star today.  I didn't expect to finish it before Friday, but I was having so much fun that I just kept going.  And then when all I had left was 3 borders, it seemed silly to stop.

Feathers around the star itself, pebbles in the background, and more feathers for the border.  All the pinks are outlined.  And despite the troubles I had loading it for the last 2 borders, the quilt is nice and square.

This quilt is from Barbara H. Cline's book "Diamond Chain".  I reversed the colour scheme and turned the hexagon into a square for this quilt.Now I just have to bind it, and since it's only Wednesday, that might even be able to happen before Saturday.

I'm linking up at Freshly Pieced and The Needle and Thread Network today, for Work in Progress Wednesday.

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

A quilt of my own!

I have one of my own quilts on the long arm this week.  It's been a while, but I need to get this one quilted and back to the shop as a class sample (and I'd better get the class supply list written up too).  I'm having fun with this one.  Completely custom quilted, including feathers, pebbles, and stitch in the ditch.

Oopsie, a bit of a wobble on one of these feathers, so I'll have to fix that up.

The pebbles are coming out nicely - better than I expected for a first attempt.

This quilt's about 1/2 done, which is pretty much on track for the schedule I wanted to keep.  Lots of customer quilts waiting in the wings, so I need to get this one finished up.

 And I wanted to show you a quilt I did for a client a few weeks ago.  She asked for a large needle running diagonally along the top of the spools. So I did that, and added the scissors and a spool of thread to the quilting.  I had a lot of fun with this quilt.

Monday, 12 May 2014

Design Wall Monday

This is what's on my design wall today.  It's the backing for one of the quilts I made at retreat last  month.  I still like my cut-a-round rulers, but the larger circles are much easier to work with.  I have another circle quilt in mind, and I think it's going to be appliqued, much as I hate to do that.  At least I can do it without raw edges, due to some options I learned last year.
This quilt however, is all set-in circles.

A study in contrasts - here's the front of the quilt.  The front and back are slightly different sizes. The rectangle blocks are 8" finished, and the circle blocks are 9". But I'll fix up that difference with the final border on the back, which will also give me more room for positioning errors.

Drop by Judy's blog for more design walls today.

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Stash Report - May 11

Another week filled with willpower. Even a trip to a quilt store and I didn't bring anything home with me.

I've been working away on my Kaffe Fassett quilt, but I can't call it done just yet. Close, oh so close, but not yet.  I also started the backing for one of the quilts I made at retreat last month. I decided to go ahead and try to make the pieced backing I had originally planned, even though I used up most of the fabric I bought for it. A bit of a redesign and I think I'm going to end up with something workable there. Pictures will come one I have a few blocks made.

I finished 2 customer quilts this week, and next up is my pink Diamond Star quilt.  I need to get this quilted and back to the shop, as a sample for an upcoming class.  Not sure yet what I'm going to do, but I want something a little different than the turquoise one I already made.

 Stash totals for the year:
402 1/4 yards in
77 1/2 yards out
Total: 324 3/4  yards in

 Drop by Judy's blog for more stash reports.

Saturday, 10 May 2014

Quilt Show

I spent a bit of time at a quilt show today.  As always, completely amazed by some of the quilts hanging there. There were dozens of gorgeous art creations, that I could never reproduce.  And of course lots of more traditional quilts. A few that caught my eye are below. I love the double wedding ring variation.  And the "Oh my gosh" is, as always, completely stunning for the amount of work and little bitty pieces (the photo leaves much to be desired, however.)

Monday, 5 May 2014

Design Wall Monday

When I was cleaning up my sewing room yesterday, I found a pile of fabric I had put aside to make one or two Kaffe Fassett quilts.  I have his "Shots and Stripes" book, and a pile of shot cottons to go with it. I made one quilt after attending a workshop with Kaffe, and I wanted to try a couple more arrangements.

So, when I found the fabric piled in a corner, I quickly cut a bunch of strips and went to work.  I added a couple of rows right before I took this picture, because the quilt wasn't going to be long enough (I think the measurements in the book don't match the layout). Unfortunately, my design wall isn't long enough either :)  The mess at the top will resolve itself into blocks when I'm done.

This one should go together pretty quickly, if I can keep it from falling off the wall as I work on it.  Although I am having a challenge with the setting triangles and have had to recut 1/2 of them. The stripes keep heading in the wrong direction.

Drop by Judy's blog for more design walls today.

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Stash Report - May 3

My willpower held up this week! Two trips to the quilt store, and nothing came home with me. Of course, there's a show next weekend, so that could be dangerous.

I even managed some usage this week. I finished the pink quilt I was working on. And I made backing for two quilts that I should be able to get onto the longarm soon.

pink quilt - 2 yards
backings for two quilts-  7 yards

Stash totals for the year:
402 1/4 yards in
77 1/2 yards out
Total: 324 3/4  yards in

 Drop by Judy's blog for more stash reports.

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Bias Striped Border

I finshed the top I was working on with a bias striped border.

The blocks came from the guild scrap table - 10 moose in a corner quilt-along blocks, I think the note said. One was a full 1/2" shorter than the rest (which, it turned out, were mostly about 12 1/4" rather than 12 1/2").   I fixed that one up with some new strips (fortunately it was a bordered design, and some extra jelly roll strips were included). Then I cut all the blocks to 12 1/4", and put the quilt top

As I mentioned in another post, I quilted a lovely quilt for a customer, where she'd done a border with striped fabric, cut on the bias. I thought the effect was lovely, and as I was working on my current quilt it struck me that this would be a perfect accent for this. Especially since I had a striped fabric in a suitable pink, just looking for a home.

So I did some calculations. When I was talking to my customer about her border, she pointed out that the stripes actually changed direction at each corner.  She figured out that it would be necessary to cut bias strips in two directions, in order to keep the stripes all aligned.  I shamelessly stole all her hints, and set out to a make a bias-cut striped border that was all running in the same direction.  So I pulled out my trusty "Quilt Calc" app, and asked it how much fabric I needed to cut. The quilt center was about 40x50, so I figured 100" of bias border in each direction.  According to the app, 100" of 2.5" fabric requires a 20" square. Perfect - two 20" squares cut from a width of fabric should give me everything I needed for the border.

I cut the 2 squares, laid them both right side up on top of each other, but rotated one by 90 degrees, so I would get the alternate direction cut.  Then I cut 6 bias strips from each square.  I really lucked out, because when I picked up the first two strips to attach them, I found that the stripes matched PERFECTLY.  This of course inspired me to aim for a perfect match with each join - again luck was with me  and I had to adjust by less than 1/4" at each joint, in order to my border to look seamless.

Of course, mitred corners were necessary, so I carefully attached the first 2 border strips, making sure I had enough length for the mitre. Again luck smiled on me - the ends of the strips were already cut at the appropriate 45 degree angle.  Ok, that's not luck, that's just how cutting bias from a square turns out - as long as you orient the strips correctly when attaching them.

I sewed the first 2 border strips to the long edges, then pinned the shorter strips.  After it was fully pinned, I thought about it for a bit. And realized that I should be able to match these corners too.  A little bit of adjustment, and the corners came out wonderfully. (Yes, there is a seam there)
I tried a couple of options for borders.  I was planning to use the light pink that was used for setting triangles. But that just wasn't working for me when I laid it out beside the quilt.  So I picked up a darker fabric, which I had originally bought along with the stripe sometime last year. Much better, so that was the choice I went with.

And now the top is done and ready for quilting. I  have a lovely floral pantograph that I think I will try out for this quilt. 

Friday, 2 May 2014

A quilty weekend

I'm all set for a nice quilty weekend.  No plans, no where to go, I can spend some quality time with my fabric :)  First, I figured out what I want to do with the flying geese on the embroidery quilt.  And I think I have the stars figured out too.

Then, I have this top on my wall.  I think I'm going to do a bias striped border.  I just quilted one like this and I loved it, so I'm going to give it a shot. 

But for now, I'm off to finish my block of the week, because it's due tomorrow.