Sunday, March 18, 2018

Scrap Quilting

My favorite kind of quilting is scrap quilting which is why I like so many of Lori Holt's designs because they lend themselves to using scraps. This week we made the scrappy heart and globe blocks for the Spelling Bee Sew Along.
Since it was St. Patrick's Day, I decided to make a curved log cabin block in greens. I have not joined in on the Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2018, but I have been itching to start a scrappy project--a curved log cabin quilt to keep for myself. Having a ongoing scrap project is my favorite, so this is it.
 Today, I finished up a purple block 
and a light blue block too.
Earlier in the week, I made my Clementine March Blocks for that quilt along and had some leftover half square triangles. I made this little zip pouch for a friend.
 I had to go to Joann's to pick up some scrap booking paper and of course I always check what they have on sale. I found this fantastic white with black print for $5 a yard. I think it will make the perfect backing for my Postcard from Sweden Quilt. I got 8.5 yards of it, so I can use it for another backing too.
The scrapbooking paper was for a Spring Care Package for my daughter--I always line the large priority mail boxes with five pieces of scrapbooking paper that I trim a little and tape it inside. My daughter had her spring break this last week and went to California to visit her grandma, so we did not get to see her--I hope these goodies remind her we miss her!

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Hideaway Quilt Along

Greetings! This is my version of the Hideaway Quilt--I opted for a black with gray polka dots for my sashing and binding. The black really frames the fabulous panels and the big blocks. Everything else is exactly what the free pattern used. (There is a link below.)
Using panels is a great way to make a baby quilt quickly, and Art Gallery Fabrics created these fun and modern looking panels with positive messages along with the adorable factor! They are part of their Nest collection.
Since the fabrics are modern and sleek, I decided to quilt it with a modern one inch grid pattern.
Isn't this bear precious?
The pieced blocks are big, simple, and speedy to make. You only have to make four of the X's and four of the +'s. I spent a lot more time grid quilting this than piecing.  This is a very good sized baby/toddler quilt that finishes 58 1/2" x 58 1/2"
For my backing, I used a white with black dots that make circular patterns to offset all of my quilting squares.  Kimberly from the Fat Quarter Shop has an awesome tutorial available on You Tube, here is the link:
Here is the pattern:

Thank you Fat Quarter Shop for providing the fabrics for the top! I had a great time making this quilt.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Postcard from Sweden Top

 Check it out--I have my Postcard from Sweden top done! I made the bigger version so it is 60" x 72".  I just signed up to take a walking foot quilting class for two days over my spring break the first week in April. I think I will wait to quilt this until my class because maybe I can get a great idea. I have never been a big fan of solids, but I have to say I love this! 
I have lots of Kona leftovers from my kit, so I am thinking of starting another project with them. This free pattern has been tempting me to put them to use. 
I just have not been able to decide between a white or a gray background.
I am keeping up with my blocks of the month and I have a secret project for the Fat Quarter Shop in the dryer right now--I get to reveal it on Thursday.
I have labels to embroider for Slow Sunday Stitching
and Monday off, so maybe I will start something new!


Sunday, March 4, 2018

March OMG & Spelling Bee Blocks

 I have been working on some secret sewing for the Fat Quarter Shop again. This time it is a baby quilt project--big blocks and a sweet panel.
Here are some of the fabrics up close. My top is indeed done, but I have about a week to get it all quilted. I am making this my One Monthly Goal (OMG) for March. Check out everyone's goals here:
I have been keeping up with my Spelling Bee Blocks for that quilt along.  I have spent the whole weekend in my sewing room and I even got my Postcard from Sweden top done for that quilt along. It has been really windy here and it just started snowing, so I will have to wait for pictures of that one. 

I am all caught up with my binding, but I will enjoy some Slow Sunday Stitching of a quilt label or two.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Row Along Finish & Clementine Blocks 2

I finished my Bee In My Bonnet Row Along Quilt. This was my OMG for February. It was a UFO from July 2013. 
I finally took the plunge and decided on my borders--a thinner version of the outer pieced border on Lori Holt's design. I made mine a finished three inch instead of six inches. Mine is 58 x 72 inches!
 The backstory on this quilt is I started it soon after I started blogging in 2013. I had gotten frustrated with a lack of modern quilting in my local area and I turned to the internet and blogs to inspire me. I discovered Lori Holt's Bee In My Bonnet blog. At that time this was a still available on her blog as a series of tutorials. I competed all of the rows in a couple of weeks and organized all of my scraps by color--the modern scrappy style has become my favorite.
 Then, I hit a wall and could not make a decision about borders. It languished in a plastic tub for several years. I even taught a BOM class for this quilt in 2016, but did not finish my own.
I did buy a turquoise fabric with the borders in mind and I picked up a red fabric for the backing.
 I love the red backing even though it was not a smart choice. The first time I washed it with four Color Catchers and they came out very pink. The red backing seemed to have bled along the quilting where the label was located. I washed it again with more Color Catchers and the pink on the Color Catchers was lighter, but the bleeding remained.
I ended up soaking the quilt in a very hot bubble bath of half a cup of Dawn Clear Dish Soap for over 12 hours.  It seemed to do the trick and I washed it again with several Color Catchers and they came out white. Success-into the dryer it went!
Here is an up close of my label and the quilting. I struggled with how to quilt it. I wish I could afford to have my quilts professionally quilted, but that is not in my budget and long arming it myself is usually not very successful. I decided to embrace the motto- Done Is Better Than Perfect and quilt it horizontally with my Pfaff's large wavy stitch an inch apart. Since the focus is on the blocks themselves, I think the quilting actually works really well. 
I may even get my Bee Happy Appliqué Quilt prepped to quilt it this way. What do you think? This one needs to be finished too. #ufoslayer
I have also been keeping up with the Clementine Quilt Along--here are my Blocks for February. This quilt is going to be spectacular! You can find the block directions here and don't forget this is a fundraiser for St. Jude!

I am still working on binding for my friend and that will be my Slow Sunday Stitching

Monday, February 19, 2018

Postcard from Sweden QAL

I hope you had a lovely Valentine's Day! My hubby and I don't make a big deal about it--we usually celebrate with a steak dinner and nice bottle of wine, but my amazing daughter sent me these two dozen roses. They still look lovely and smell even better nearly a week later!
 I caved a couple of weeks ago and ordered a kit to participate in the Postcard from Sweden Quilt Along. It officially began on Valentine's Day, but I worked on it this weekend. It takes a lot of time to cut up 36 fat quarters and number them, but they look so bright and cheerful.
 I spent today sewing all the blocks for the rows together. I still need to trim the blocks, but I am a little ahead now. I know the trimming will be tedious, but it will be worth it. I am making the larger sized quilt that will finish 60 x 72 inches.
 I also worked on Blocks 2 for the Clementine Quilt Along, but I cannot reveal them yet! For information on both quilt alongs, check my right hand sidebar for links.
I have a another secret sewing project for the Fat Quarter Shop, so stay tuned for that.

By the way, my spa treatment soaking of my Row Along Quilt worked, so that UFO is officially completed. I hope our wind dies down soon, so I can get some pictures of fabulous it came out.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

UFO Slayer?

I have officially been a quilter for 23 years and sadly I have still not finished my first quilt and likely never will! I spent some time yesterday assessing my UFO projects--I was looking at the six tops I had stored in my hope chest and my hubby kindly reminded me there was also a tub of UFOs out in the garage too...Into the garage, I ventured. Sure enough, the tub contained my first quilt, another scrappy quilt, and this batik beauty. 

This UFO is ancient---likely 15+ years old. I know I made it when I lived in California and I still have the pattern which was from 2000. It is called Bouillabaisse and can still be purchased here:
I went through a batik phase. Batiks are striking and gorgeous looking, but they are not soft which is why I stopped using them. In its current state, this quilt is roughly 57 inches square. I could add a border, but I am not sure. I located several yards of an aqua batik that could be a backing--again I am not sold. Well, I ironed it and its potential backing and hung it in the closet to ponder. I may use it as a charity quilt for Happy Chemo as the Hands 2 Help 2018 will be coming very soon. At least it has been unearthed and won't continue to languish and unlike my first quilt I like the colors although it is far from perfect.
I dropped two queen-sized quilts off to my friend Rachel yesterday--I hand bound them for her. We are planning on trading my hand binding for her longarm quilting. She is currently in the market to purchase a longarm and had been trying out several types around town. Unfortunately, she broke her arm and had to have surgery which may delay her longarm adventures a little, but I am in no hurry when so many of my tops have been waiting years. I went ahead and took these lap sized quilts to bind for her. I can cuddle up under them and stitch while I watch the Olympics in the evenings. I will work on the batik one for Slow Sunday Stitching:
I finished this little mug rug the other night--it was a UFO from last spring. 

My Row Along Quilt is all done, but I had a little problem with some bleeding in one area, so it is having a long spa day in my bathtub with some Dawn dish soap right now. I can live with it, if it does not come out, because I am probably the only one that would notice the bleeding along some of the quilted lines by my label...Done is better than perfect!