Friday, August 29, 2014

Banishing the Blues

The last two days have been spent banishing the blues.  No, this is not a post on how quilting can help alleviate depression!  Instead, it's about using up the blue scraps. Specifically, the light blue scraps.  Now, keep in mind, this is still a work in progress, as I need some blocks for the corners.

Had to take this picture on the floor, as the design wall still has Sunny Lanes on it.  But this is the block placement I'm thinking of.  See what I mean by it needing some corner blocks?

I got on a bit of a role from making the 15 1/2" blocks for my small group, and thought I'd do some more.  Pulling out all the light blue scraps, I did the stitch and flip method again on phone book paper.  The piles of narrow blocks at the bottom of this picture shows them still with the paper, and needing trimming.

Those will be cut down to 3 1/2" by either 8 1/2" or 10 1/2", so that they fit with the four rectangle blocks, which measure 8 1/2" x 10 1/2".
The 3 1/2" width was just because I had several blue pieces in which that was the longest side.  This is another one of those random let's-see-what-we-have-to-use tops.  It's a process that's seems to work for me (see Random Acts of Blue).

Still haven't decided what the sashing color will be.  White? Done that.  Medium blue?  Maybe.  Dark Blue?  Yellow?  Any ideas??  Keep in mind that this will ultimately be a baby quilt. And hopefully I won't fall in love with it and keep it!

Happy Quilting this weekend!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

What a Difference a Day Makes!

All it took was one day, and what a transformation!  Sunny Lanes now has borders, and boy, is she pretty!

Now the piecing pops!  Even my son, who usually gives me a 'meh' on my creations, said "Oooh, I like this one!"  Geesh!  And what am I doing for quilting, you ask?  Uh, don't know yet.  Another that will have to hang there while I think about it.

Also got some scrap busting done yesterday.  My small modern group decided to use up our scraps making random pieced blocks.  Each of us chose three colors to each make a 15 1/2" block, with a white center.  Here's mine.

 Aqua (hmm, wonder why I chose that color!)
And just finished this morning, Blue.

All of these were done with the flip and stitch technique with phone book pages as a stabilizer.  Check out this post, playing for more than 15 minutes, on how to do the flip and stitch. These were fun to create, so I might just make some more for a different quilt.  I'll stick to a smaller block size though--15 1/2" is a bit big for what I have in mind.  Plenty of scraps still to use up!

Linking up at Freshly Pieced today!

Happy Quilting!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Sunny Lanes Progress and a Thank You

Lots of progress this past weekend on my Book of the Month project, Sunny Lanes.
This top is 3 blocks by 4, and currently sewn together in rows.  Today I'll tackle connecting the rows, and adding on a border or two.  

Amazingly, this quilt hardly made a dent in the batik strips and squares. There's definitely enough left for another quilt. I could make this one bigger, but frankly, I'm done.  Time for something else!

To see more about this quilt, check out these posts about the fabric, and the block.

Now for the thank you.  I have a had quite a number of new followers over the last few weeks, and I would like to say welcome and thank you!  I appreciate each and every one of you who takes the time to follow my quilting journey.  I hope that I have inspired you in your own quilting, because it's more about the process than the result.  Each and every time I make a quilt, I learn something new, and hope you do to. That's the beauty of quilting.

Have a wonderful day!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Diamond Table/Hutch Runner

The class sample table runner is quilted, bound, and resting on my hutch.  
Yes, hutch.  I've tried putting table runners on my OVAL table, and they just don't work.  So I made this one to fit the top of the hutch, and it adds some autumn sparkle to the room.

The quilting is composed of billowing lines,
with some maple leaves here and there.  Unfortunately, they're hard to see.
Oh well, win some, lose some!  Leaves in a wave are in the border.  And once again, pretty gold Glide thread was used throughout.

I've also made some progress on my Book of the Month project, Sunny Lanes from Nickel Quilts.  Wanting to use up the 2 1/2" strips first, I cut off 10" lengths and sewed them to background strips.

That way, I had a lot of four patch variety immediately. Then I did the nickel squares to make half square triangles, and popped everything up on the design wall.

Pretty, huh?  Here's one block:
I think I have enough to make a queen size quilt, but I think that may change.  Maybe a lap size, we'll see.

Okay, got to get back to it!  Have a great weekend and spend some time quilting!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Feathers and Such

I promised I would explain how I did the feathers on Scraplicious Florabunda, and it's easier than you think!
If you haven't seen the whole quilt, click here.

First, the design.  Once again, I put my trusty clear vinyl sheet over the top, and used a dry erase marker to draw away.  I copied the curved frame onto paper so that I could use it as a template.

Then, using my longarm circle rulers, I redrew the curves to smooth them out and form the wave, and to figure out what size circles to use. For the sides, I'm using a 12" diameter circle, 
and for the top and bottom, it's a 10".
I only needed to do half of a side, and half of the bottom for my templates.  Once that's done, I cut them out.
Using the cutout and a fine point ceramic marker, I transferred the curve to my top, using the mitered corners and edge of the inner border as reference points. 
Using the ruler, I'm ready to stitch.
Not being happy with my original design to fill the frame, I kept drawing until this feather spray emerged.
Wanting the feathers to be consistent around the entire frame, I redrew it with a washable marker onto a transfer screen.  Then using a chalk marker (because it was the only thing that would mark through the screen), the feather design was transferred, flipping as necessary.

All I've got to do is follow the lines!  Beautiful symmetrical feathers.

This technique is not limited to longarm machines.  It can also be used for domestic quilting, as it has been for years.  Give it a try the next time you're looking for a consistency in your designs.

And be sure to check out the Whale of a Sale on fabric, yarn, and kits at  Time for some new fabric at great prices! 
Happy Quilting!


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Scraplicious Florabunda

It is done!  Introducing Scraplicious Florabunda!
The scrappy aqua blue flowers has turned out beautiful, and is definitely one I'm super proud of.  The random piecing (click here to see how) evolved into a wonderful flower display, and the addition of the quilting makes me say WOW.  This will hang in a place of honor in my house for a long time.

Below are LOTS of detail pictures.  I hope the page doesn't take forever to load!  First up, the feather border, with scribbling to help define those feathers.
And my McTavishing with pebbles as the background fill.
Quilted in some leaves--every flower needs leaves!

And the just as beautiful back.

Two layers of batting and glide thread in bright neon green, navy blue, and yellow were used on this quilt.  The next post, I'll go over how I did those gorgeous feathers!

Until then, Happy Quilting!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Class Projects

Maybe I'm a bit ahead of myself, but in October, I'm teaching a class on the cutting and sewing of diamonds.  So yesterday, I spent the day constructing this sample table runner.
Yes, a table runner.  In my house, it's more like hutch runner, cause that's where it's going!  Measuring in at 20" x 60", it's the perfect size for my hutch.

Colors for this runner were inspired by this fabric
which is on the border.  Here's a closeup of the various prints. 
A nice fall variety and I think I'll quilt leaves on it.  Hope the students aren't scared of diamonds after my class.

Another class project I finished up is my hexie coaster.
Turned out nice, except I'll try a thread that blends in better next time.  The instructor recommended a medium grey thread, but in this case, I think red would have been better.  But not bad for a first attempt.

And I'm finishing up the binding, hanging sleeve, and label on my aqua flowers.  Almost there for the grand reveal!

Until then, Happy Quilting!