Friday, October 26, 2018

Becharmed Quilt

How about these gorgeous feathers on a little pink scrap quilt. Today, I'm revealing all of Becharmed!

Becharmed baby quilt by QuiltFabrication

Such a pretty little scrap quilt, if I do say so myself!

This quilt is a sister quilt to the Scrap Happy baby quilt from last year,

Scrap Happy baby quilt from the Charm School book

which was a pattern in the Charm School (affiliate link) by Vanessa Goertzen.

Since I had so many pink/purple charm squares left over from Scrap Happy, I designed Becharmed.

Making the 4-patch blocks for the center plus the borders was a snap using The Charming 4-Patch - Fast, Fun, and Fabulous tutorial. For a quick refresher, charm squares are sewn together, cut, sewn, and cut again, creating 4-patch blocks quickly and easily - without ever sewing a 2.5" square.

Fast Fun Fabulous 4-Patch blocks at QuiltFabrication

Along with the written tutorial, there's also a video to explain the process.

And to make a lot of 4-patch blocks at once, check out both The Charming 4-Patch on Overdrive, and it's companion video.

Now back to Becharmed. Once all the 4-patch blocks were done, some became the center block, while the others were saved for the border. 

Becharmed scrap quilt by QuiltFabrication

Cream charms create both the inner and outer borders. Here's a little secret:  it's the backside of those cream charms that make up the borders. The front side was either too dark or had too much print, but the backs were perfect, so don't be afraid to use the backside of a fabric.

And with the open space of those cream borders, feathers just seemed a natural choice - they show up beautifully!

Becharmed feather closeup

Balancing that is the simple crosshatch quilting on the 4-patches - super easy!

If you're looking for a fast baby quilt, check out Becharmed!

Happy Quilting!

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Monday, October 22, 2018

FREE Halloween Decorating Ideas

Halloween is just around the corner - only 9 days left! How about some FREE Halloween decor ideas? 

I've put together a sampling of small quilts to make, fun decorations to create, and pumpkin decorating ideas - take a look! Just click on the pink links - they're all FREE!

By the Light of the Moon by Elizabeth Cecchettini

By the Light of the Moon quilt

Boo Wall Hanging from the Fabric Mill

Boo Wall Hanging

Spider Web Quilted Pillows and

Spider Web quilted pillows

Reversible Spider Web Halloween Quilt, both from Polly Carlson

Reversible Spider Web quilt

All Hallows Eve from Jedi Craft Girl

All Hallows Eve quilt

That Cat from Pamela Lincoln

That Cat quilt

Eat Drink and Be Scary Wall Hanging from Heidi Pridemore

Eat Drink and Be Scary

There's also these pretty clever non-quilted decorations too - check these out for fun!

Pool Noodle Witch Legs from East Coast Mommy

Pool Noodle Witch Legs

And for those of you with an electronic cutting machine, (Cricut or Silhouette), and like me, don't feel like carving a pumpkin, check out these great pumpkin decorating ideas from The Simply Crafted Life.

no carve pumpkin decorations

Looking for more pumpkins, of the quilted kind? Then take a look at the
8 FREE Pumpkin Quilt projects.

And don't forget the candy for those little trick-or-treaters. While you're at it, pick up some extra - quilting and chocolate just seem to go together!
Happy Quilting!

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Friday, October 19, 2018

String Blocks for Hurricane Michael

Yesterday, I made some early morning visits to a few other bloggers, reading and commenting on the works in progress. But a link up from Elana at That Fabric Feeling hit me more than any of the others:  
hers was a call for string blocks to make quilts for those affected by Hurricane Michael in Florida. 

This just seemed like the right project at the right time. I knew I had some orphan strips, and I always have scraps (who doesn't!), plus I wanted a sewing diversion.

Looking through the orphan strips gave me a chance to sort them by color, with green being the most dominate. Add in my scraps, plus some cotton broadcloth for a foundation (the big green chunk in the upper right corner), and off I went to sew.

green scrap pile of strips

In Elana's post, she suggested a lightweight foundation fabric versus paper. Personally, I find ripping out paper a big pain in the you-know-what! So, given that I have more colored cotton broadcloth than plain muslin stashed away, this was a perfect opportunity to use it. 

By the way, it's easy to tell if your fabric has polyester in it, as most inexpensive broadcloth's do. Hit that fabric with a hot iron, and then smell it. Polyester has a particular, distinct chemical smell - once you smell it, you'll know it. (For some funny reason, it's a smell one can find in your local Goodwill - lot's of polyester stuff dumped there.)

Anyway, cotton will not smell. Of course, you could do the burn test: take a few strings of the fabric in question, and in a safe, fireproof area, set a match to it. If the strings turn to ash, it's cotton. If they melt into a glob, it's polyester. Oh you've learned so much today!

So let's get back to those string blocks. After tacking down the first strip with acid-free glue, the next strip was sewn on, then pressed open.

sewing first two strips on a string quilt block

first two strips on a string quilt block

More strips got added to fill the whole 11" square.

string quilt block ready for trimming

Then, from the backside, the block got trimmed to 10 1/2".

string quilt block

Notice how the corners are rather small pieces? They tended to want to fly up, but I stitched them into peaceful submission with an 1/8" from the edge line of stitching, just on one side, to keep things square when the blocks are joined together.

tacking down quilt block corners

And because I still had plenty of strips left, I made 5 more blocks for a total of 6 to send off.

six string quilt blocks

These are already in the mail, on their way to the UMW Quilting Group, to be assembled into a quilt. 

And that pile of scraps? Again, the before:

scrap pile before

The after.

remaining pile of scraps and strips

Still doesn't look like there's a dent in it, does it? It just always amazes me at how much a pile of scraps can produce!

Happy Quilting!

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Monday, October 15, 2018

Halloween Fright Night

Try not to be scared of this spooky quilt - Halloween Fright Night!

Halloween Fright Night by QuiltFabrication

This is my newest lap quilt, measuring 52" x 68", and made with a variety of Halloween fabrics. Some fabrics are recently acquired, and some were in my stash - everything got a chance to be seen here! 

recently acquired Halloween fabric for a quilt

Made as an easy strip quilt, anything that's a 2.5" strip goes here - a jelly roll, fat quarters, or yardage. As long as it's a strip, and Halloween themed, it's in.

strips of Halloween fabric

With the addition of yellow-green applique eyes peeking through the strips, this quilt makes for an eerie Halloween.

owl eyes on a quilt by QuiltFabrication
Owl eyes

cat eyes on a quilt by QuiltFabrication
Cat eyes

Wouldn't it be awesome to have those eyes made with glow-in-the-dark fabric??? With the addition of spider webs, Fright Night becomes really spooky! 

spider web quilting

Can't forget the back - it's Halloween themed too, but not as frightful as the front.

Halloween Fright Night backing

So gather that stash of Halloween fabrics to make your own Fright Night! The Halloween Fright Night pattern is now available at Etsy

Happy Halloween!

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Friday, October 12, 2018

Eight FREE Pumpkin Quilt Projects

While I'm off to PIQF today, enjoy these free pumpkin quilt projects from around the web.

Strip Pumpkin from Flamingo Toes

Pumpkin Quilt Block from All People Quilt

Patchwork Pumpkin table runner by A Diary of a Quilter

Jack O'Lantern Mini by Thread Bare Creations

Four Pumpkins wall quilt by Cheryl Haynes for Benartex

The Great Pumpkin Quilt by Renee Nanneman for Andover Fabrics

Scrappy Pumpkin table runner by Angela Tackett Designs

Scrappy Pumpkin runner by A Bright Corner

If you're looking for more decorations for Halloween, then check out these FREE Halloween ideas!