Friday, 30 November 2018

Mini Houses

Last year, one of my guilds made house blocks as the block of the month.  Each house finished at 12", and had a 6" block of the quilter's choice inset.  I wanted to participate, but really did not want a quilt of 12" houses. So after looking around for a while, I picked up a package of quilters candy (2.5" squares) in Kona colours that had been in my sewing room for a while, and decided to use it.. 

I picked a rainbow of colours, and each house was pieced from two 2.5" squares of fabric.  Each of my mini houses finished at 3 1/4", with a 1 1/2" pieced block in greys as the inset.  From some of the leftover squares, I pieced little trees to round out the scene.  Then I quilted it on my computerized longarm, by shrinking a snowflake pattern down to scale.

The mini house quilt finished at about 18" x 26".

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Past Bonnie Hunter Mysteries

I'm SO excited for this year's mystery. Clue one has come out, and the fun has started already.  In prepartion for this, I tried to finish up some of my previous mysteries. The tops generally get done, but quilting sometimes gets pushed to the bottom of the list.  This summer, I finished a couple of recent ones.

First, En Provence. This was the 2016 mystery. I used Bonnie's colours, although I went with single fabrics rather than her scrappy choices. I did pull in a second neutral, so that I could play with the 4-patches she filled the background/borders with, and I'm glad I did. It really adds to the quilt.

Last year was "On Ringo Lake". I decided to do this one in Christmas colours, so I found a great fabric with colours I liked, and based my colour selections on that. Once again I did not do scrappy, and when she pieced the background, I stuck with a single fabric. I did make a minor change to her outer border, because I wanted the green squares to look finished. Other than this, this first quilt is as she designed it (in a smaller size). I wanted a throw that could be in the living room for the Christmas season.

The leftover blocks went into a second quilt, which will be donated to Victoria's Quilts. The colours are not "in your face" Christmassy, so I hope it will be loved by someone all year round.

I have 3 extra blocks after all this. One will be the pocket on the bag for the donation quilt. And the other two are going to be pillows to match my quilt.  The pillow fronts are done, just need quilting and then I can assemble the pillows.

I have done every Bonnie Hunter mystery since Orca Bay in 2011.  I stumbled onto her mysteries through a Monday Design Wall linkup that year.  For some reason, suddenly at the end of November everyone was doing the same quilt :)  So I checked it out and jumped in with both feet.  I have done them all since then. And the original is the reason I bought a longarm, so I keep it as a reminder of that.  Here are my quilts - one (Celtic Solstice) is missing because I donated it, but I've kept the rest.  Only Easy Street still needs quilting - the rest are complete.  From left to right: Orca Bay, Easy Street, Grand Illusion, Allietare, En Provence, and On Ringo Lake.

Monday, 26 November 2018

Good Fortune Clue #1

Bonnie Hunter's new mystery, Good Fortune, started on Friday. The first clue came out after weeks of anticipation. I resisted playing with it all day, because I was going out to my sew group that night to work on the clue with friends.

Finally time rolled around and we got to start! Lots of cutting, and lots of sewing later, and all of my blocks are done. Sewing with friends sure makes the time go fast, and it was so much fun seeing everyone's colours.

I used purple in place of Bonnie's red, and switched around the rest of her colours. You can see my choices here 

Now the wait begins for Clue 2 :)  Whatever will I do with myself until then?  I know, I know - finish up all those customer quilts waiting for attention.

Check out Bonnie's linkup for what everyone else has been up to for clue #1.

Sunday, 25 November 2018

Jacob's Ladder quilt

Another finish from this summer's challenge.  This quilt has had quite an adventure, and is now (I think) 2 years old. A couple of years ago I attended a guild retreat, and I won the block draw. Everyone made one block - it was a 1/2 square triangle using a Kaffe Fassett print and a white-on-white.  The winner (me!) received all the blocks and the batting/backing to complete the quilt.  I looked at the quilt design, and while it was nice, it really was not me, and I knew I would not keep the quilt if I made it that way. So I took the blocks home and started thinking about how I could redefine them.

I realized looking at my big 1/2 square triangles (approximately 9" square) that I could cut them into 4 pieces and I would have 2 smaller 1/2 square triangles, one white square, and one Kaffe Fassett square.  Which I could then put together into one of my favourite block formations. It's not quite a Jacob's Ladder block, but similar, with two 1/2-square triangles and two 4-patches.

It took me a while to cut into those lovely triangles, but I did it, and started sewing 4-patches from the result. Then I found a layout I liked, and started putting together the blocks. About halfway through, I suddenly realized that I needed to put my blocks together in two different orientations (one with HSTs pointing in, and one pointing out).  A quick count, and I ripped out 3 blocks and put them, and the remaining bits, together for the alternate blocks.

Image result for wide back fabric trianglesI went hunting for a border fabric - which of course had to be Kaffe Fassett. The backing ended up different - something a little calmer than the rest of the prints. It's "Just Right" by Michael Miller, and was indeed just right for this quilt.

Friday, 23 November 2018

mini giraffe

This sweet giraffe is from Violet Craft.  I paper pieced one back when the pattern first came out, for a shop sample. But he was SO cute I knew I wanted to make one for myself. However, the quilt is almost 60" square, and I didn't want one quite that big. So I downsized the patter pieces to 50%, and made a version for myself. This little guy is only about 24x30", and just as cute as his big brother.  I had to redraw a couple bits of the face, because it just became too small/too many pieces to work with at this size, but overall he came out quite nicely.

The quilt has actually been completed for some time (a year or two at least), but I finally figured out how I wanted to quilt it and got it done over the summer, as part of my guild UFO challenge.

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

PEI Mystery #2

This quilt was one of my summer finishes.  I joined a guild UFO challenge for the summer and put 12 quilts on the list.  10 were completed!

 I finished my first PEI Modern Guild mystery quilt on time back in May, but this one sat around for a while waiting for a chance on the longarm.  I had grand plans for custom quilting, but time passed and I finally decided to go with an all-over pantograph just to get it finished and out for donation.

This was my more modern version of the quilt. Neither conformed to the suggested layouts, because I had a particular size requirement, but I used all the blocks (and made a couple extra blue ones for this quilt).

Tuesday, 20 November 2018

Bonnie Hunter Time

It's that time of year again. Bonnie Hunter's mystery starts this week and I am so excited! I've done every one of her mysteries since Orca Bay in 2011.

I pulled a bunch of fabric when she announced her colours. Just to be confusing, my red is her blue, my purple is her red, my orange is her green and my green is her orange. And not shown here are my neutrals, which are all shades of cream. I'm a bit surprised there's no black this year - but looking back I see there hasn't been any since Allietare.

Here is a photo of all my previous Bonnie mysteries, all lined up. Only Celtic Solstice is missing, because I was not happy with my colour choice that year and I gave the quilt to charity. I'm debating a rerun of that mystery, so I'll have the complete set.