Monday, December 31, 2018

Design Wall Monday

It's the last Design Wall Monday of the year and of course I'm late posting it. :-)


This is my version of Girl's Best Friend by Swirly Girls.


My picture is not great, but I'm using a blue background and a variety of bright batiks for the diamonds. I'm happy with the fabrics and am looking forward to completing this. 

I did finish my second Star Patch Quilt earlier this week; but between the Holidays and a death in the family, I have not had time to post a picture. 


Just so I always which side is the top, I strategically placed a fussy cut square.


In case you missed it, here's my first version of the quilt.


I think that I'd like to make one more version of this quilt - rectangular like my first one, but in red, white, and blue. It will be great for a Quilt of Valor!

What are you working on this week?
Check out the quilters eye candy at 
and

Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Star Patch QAL Backing

My backing is done for my Star Patch quilt! 

Amber Johnson of Gigi's Thimble pieced her backing with more nine patches and I love that. 


I decided to do something a little different. The wind made getting a picture quite difficult, but I think you get it.  :-)


First of all, my quilt top is rectangular instead of square and Amber placed her nine patch blocks through the center of the backing. Knowing that I would never be able to keep the pieced section centered on this quilt, I chose to place it near the top of the backing. 

I know that these blocks do not quite go along with the front of the quilt, but I had eight big half square triangle pieces left over after making the star points. I decided that I wanted to use them instead of setting them aside or throwing them away. 


I was able to cut three 3.75" half square triangles from each of the left over pieces.



There is still quite a bit of fabric left over, so I've cut that into squares and rectangles and put those pieces into their respective scrap containers. 


So you can see the pieced unit a bit better, here's a picture of the backing, folded in half. 


I'm happy with this and look forward to quilting it. 

By the way, I've been working on my square version of this quilt and it's close to being done. I've used up all of the extra nine patch blocks that I made and that makes me happy. I'll post a picture soon.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

2019 Color Challenge

2019 is going to be full of fun, 
color and challenges!

I've joined Pattern by Jen's
2019 Color Challenge 


When I decided to join this challenge, I jumped right in and signed up for the January and March blocks. I figured that if I was going to play the game, I should commit early and just do it. (Actually, I worried that if I waited for later months I would get behind or worse, forget about them until the last minute.)

I may be crazy but I also decided that since I plan to make all the blocks, I'd sign up to have a completed quilt top by Jan. 15, 2020 to show. It's also good to have a plan and goals, right?

So what does this all mean? 

You can read all about the challenge at Jen's Blog - Patterns by Jen (pbj for short), but here it is in a nutshell.

Each month, Jen will pick a color and provide instructions on how to make a particular block. The goal is to use stash to create the blocks, but if you have to buy, you will most likely only need a fat quarter. (Using stash is ALWAYS a good thing!)

Plus, a handful of bloggers (myself included), have agreed to write up blog posts about the block and color for the month. This will allow you to see the block made up in all the same color, but different fabrics. (Not every blogger will post each month, but I plan to do so.)

Jen was is so clever that when she picked the color each month, she assigned a flower to it. What a great way to help figure out what the color actually looks like. Just do a search for each flower and you'll see a picture, which will help you choose fabrics. Gee, I get to make a colorful quilt AND look at beautiful flowers!?! What fun is that?   




2019 Monthly Colors

January - Bells of Ireland (green)
February - Carnation (pink)
March - Love in a Mist (Navy Blue)
April - Glory of the Snow (Blue)
May - Spider Mum (Lime)
June - Sundaze Blaze Starflower (Orange)
July - Jade Vine (Aqua)
August - Marigold (Red orange)
September - Lilac (Lavender)
October - Rose (Red)
November - Black Eyed Susan (Yellow)
December - Crocus (Purple)



So, are you going to join the fun and put lots of color into 2019? 

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

A Special Quilt

As quilters, we all know that there are times when we just have to put aside the project on which we are working and take on a special one. It may mess with our schedule, but we don't care. The new project is so important that it can't wait. This quilt is one of those projects.

Log Cabin Quilt

Sheryll made this quilt top quite a long time ago. I think she was considering borders or making it larger, but I'm not sure. For some reason, it got put in a box and set aside. There were extra strips already cut and some extra fabric in the box. 

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when Sheryll called and asked if I could quilt the top for her because she wanted it finished to give to Jim. Of course I said yes; but then we had to figure out how to get the quilt to me, as we live about 1 3/4 hours apart. 

I finally got the quilt, picked a backing (a dark brown paisley) and promptly quilted it in a swirly design (Spring Thing by Jodi Beamish). She let me decide on the binding and I chose a red to bring out the red in the quilt. The picture does not do these fabrics or this quilt justice. They are gorgeous and there really is bits and pieces of red in the blocks. Sheryll is very new to quilting and she did a really good job of piecing this! 

Since I really do like to bind quilt, this was done very quickly and I was thrilled to give the quilt to Sheryll last week. She is happy with it, which makes me very happy.

Now I can move back to my regularly scheduled projects. :-) 

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Merry Mugs and Quilty Hugs

I was happy to participate in Amber Johnson's Merry Mugs and Quilty Hugs Exchange. 

I forgot to take a picture of what I sent, but you should be able to see it by clicking HERE

It was fun to choose a mug and fill it with fun things.

Here's what I got. I really hit the mother load!



Wow! Kim over at Bitty Bits and Pieces went above and beyond and I love everything in my mug. She even included a list that tells the story of each item. What a great idea! I need to remember that. The fact that the mug and candy (yummy) comes all the way from New Zealand is fun. ๐Ÿ˜Š She even included  pattern names and a link to the tutorial on her blog. She thought of everything, including those adorable bandaids and the Pom Pom pencil. I can’t wait to use the mini charms and ruler. 

Thanks again to Kim and Amber for this exchange. It was fun! #merrymugsandquiltyhugs #gigisthimblepattern

Monday, December 17, 2018

Design Wall Monday

Having finished my Star Patch Quilt, I decided to pull out my Elephant Abstractions quilt that I started right around Thanksgiving. As soon as I returned home from the Escape to the Ridge retreat, that project got set aside and I have not touched it since. 


I am not going to let that sit, so I'm going to work on that as well as work on the square version of the Star Patch quilt as a leader/ender project. I already have a bunch of the nine patch blocks done. I made more last night and will do a count later, but I think I only need five more. After that, I'll start the center and the star. This project goes really fast once the nine patches are made, so I should have that top done by the end of the week. 

Back to Elephant Abstractions! Have you seen Violet Craft's wonderful projects? I love her work! Even if you don't like paper piecing, you've got to admit that her quilts are amazing. 

I've got a few of her patterns and when two friends asked if I would help them with the elephant during the retreat, I quickly said, "Yes!"

Here's Violet's original elephant quilt.


My friend Carol made the lion quilt a while back and I LOVE her version. 


I love her fabric choices, especially the background. And check out those eyes!  

Another friend, Sharon, made the elephant, but I can't find the picture I took. Her quilt is stunning also. 

Like the Star Patch Quilt, these quilts are not very large. The elephant will finish approx. 54" x 60", so I'm thinking about adding borders to enlarge it but I'll make that decision when I'm done with the piecing. 

What are you working on this week?

Check out the quilters eye candy at 


and

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Star Patch Quilt

I completed my Star Patch quilt top the other day and I'm very happy with it.


I added an extra set of blocks to the top and bottom so I ended up with a rectangular quilt instead of a square one. I've decided to quilt this before trimming the ends so it will be easier to keep my 1/4" points along the edges, and I'm looking forward to seeing this cleaned up and bound.  

I made a lot of extra nine patch blocks (30 to be exact!) so I'm already over half way to making my next one of these quilts. I'm thinking about teaching this as a class, so I'll make a square version next. ๐Ÿ˜Š  


As you can see, I still have a lot of 2" print squares in my tub, and since I have to find something to do with them, it might as well be another Star Patch quilt.


Thanks Amber Johnson @gigis_thimble. What a fun quilt and quilt along! #starpatchqal #gigisthimblepattern

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Design Wall - Star Patch QAL

I  know that I'm late for Design Wall  Monday, but late is better than never.

Remember those nine patches I was making for the Star Patch Quilt Along?



I completed the next step of the QAL and made the checkerboard center and the four flying geese/star point units. Isn't it cute how Amber asked us to take a picture of these units? I may have to play around when I'm done with this quilt and make some fun tree blocks.  :-)


I am now in the process of putting the quilt top together. 


I decided that I don't want a square quilt, so I'm adding a row of blocks to the top and bottom. Thinking that I might decide that, I made extra nine patch blocks, so it wasn't a big deal and hasn't slowed down the process at all. 

I really like how this is coming together! 

The fact that absolutely all of the fabrics have come from my stash makes this extra super sweet. WooHoo!

What are you working on this week?

Check out some quilters eye candy at


and

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Star Patch QAL

Not that I already don't have enough to do, but I joined Amber Johnson's Star Patch Quilt Along


I saw the original post back in October and really liked the quilt. I decided that I had too much on my plate to join the QAL, but knew that I'd make the quilt some day. I was just too busy to commit to joining the group at that time. I kept seeing Amber's posts and how beautiful her blocks were, but I stayed strong - until last week. 

I was packing for a retreat and decided to take only one project (Elephant Abstractions by Violet Craft) so I could concentrate on that. Plus, I was one of the facilitators of the retreat and knew that I really would not get as much done as I always hope to.  :-)

Long story short, as I was looking around my sewing room I noticed my tub of 2" squares. Hmmmmm, That's the size used for the nine patch blocks of the Star Patch Quilt. 


Right next to the tub was a large neutral background fabric that had not been put away from a previous project. I took that as a sign that I should start the quilt because it could be a great (and mindless) leader/ender project during the retreat. I packed up some of the 2" squares and the background fabric and off I went.

At the retreat, as I suspected, there were times that I could not work on my project but I wanted to be doing something. I cut the background squares needed and started sewing nine patch units. I decided to go really scrappy with these because I really want to use those squares and I didn't want to have to think much when putting the blocks together. (Remember that I said I wanted a mindless project!)

I finished all 60 of the units last night and am caught up with the QAL group. YAY!


I did give some thought with a handful of the blocks because I had fussy cut the original squares. I placed those pieces in the center of the blocks. I'm glad I did that because I think it will be fun to see them while snuggling with the quilt - almost like a seek and find quilt.  :-)





Since each of these fussy cut centers were used for quilts that I've given away, not only will I enjoy the fabrics, I'll be reminded of the person to whom I gave the original quilt. That's a win/win for me.

I'm toying with the idea of enlarging the quilt and making it rectangular. That will require more nine patch blocks but that won't be a problem, as there are plenty more 2" squares left in the tub. I'll make that decision later. 

Have a great week!

Friday, November 30, 2018

Christmas Table Runner

I've been asked to host a sew day for a group of 14 ladies who want to make a Christmas table runner. The organizer had a particular runner in mind, The Ohio Star Runner from pattern Twice as Nice by Sweet Jane's.


It's a nice runner and pretty easy to make. I decided that since the organizer asked for the runner to be a "controlled scrappy" Christmas project, I would limit the number of fabrics used and not use 5" pre-cuts as the pattern suggests. We'll be making kits for the participants and to make teaching this easier for me, everyone will have the exact same fabrics. 

Here's my version. 


The organizer of the event said that most of the participants will have some sewing experience, and a few will have a lot. Hmmmm, I'm not quite sure what I've gotten myself in to, but I've decided that it will be a fun challenge. 

I've got pictures to share from a recent retreat that I helped host, as well as a few other projects. Since I was away from home Nov. 23 - 28, I have gotten quite behind in my blog posts, picture taking and editing. Hopefully I can get back on track in the next couple of days. 

Are you making any Holiday Table Runners? If so, I'd love to see them.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Design Wall Monday

Recently, a fellow quilter did something for me and she refused payment. I'm happy to finally be able to do something for her.

I've known Audrey for a couple of years and she is a very kind and caring person. She and her family will be welcoming a new child (Audrey's great grandchild) into the family early next year. Audrey really wants to make a quilt for the baby, but sadly she is struggling to do any kind of sewing, let alone quilting. 

Audrey asked me if I knew anyone who had a baby quilt that she could buy. That got me thinking that I could finally repay her for her kindness to me. At first she was hesitant, but she eventually I wore her down she agreed. 

I have a couple of quilts already made, but I decided to use up some of my scraps and make another couple so that she has a variety of quilts from which to choose. This one is one the wall now and I'm still playing around with the blocks. Soon, I'll be sewing the rows together and this will be ready to quilt. 


I made another one over the weekend that used up some Dr. Seuss fabric I had and I've got it ready to quilt too. I'll post pictures of both when they are done. 

What are you working on today?

Check out the Quilters Eye Candy at


and

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Veterans Day Recap

Friday, I was honored to present some Quilts of Valor during the Monroeville School District Veterans Day assembly. This is the third year that I've done this and am thrilled to report that to date, 33 quilts have been presented to area veterans. Not all of the quilts have been presented during the assembly, as there are always a few veterans that would rather receive the quilt privately. 

Here's a picture of this year's recipients.



Included in this picture are the school principals (one of them received a quilt two years ago), the superintendent, the teacher who supervises the assembly planning, and the two students (Allie and Conlin) who helped plan the assemble and present the quilts.  

While we were scheduled to have seven veterans in attendance for the presentation, two had medical issues that did not allow them to participate. They, along with four other veterans received their quilts Friday afternoon. That means that this year eleven veterans were "covered" with quilts.

Because I was part of the program, I didn't have the opportunity to take pictures. I did however, manage to get a picture of the service flags after they were carried in by local Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts. Unfortunately, I could not get the US flag in the picture because it was out of my camera range. Nevertheless, this is one of my favorite pictures.



After the ceremony, we presented a special quilt to a local gold star family. Their son was killed in action and Allie had met them this past summer. She was touched by them and their story and asked me if I could get them a quilt. Of course I said yes. 

Here's the quilt. 



This is a duplicate of a quilt that I made for the Blank Quilting American Honor challenge. I think it was perfect for the family. The American Honor fabric line is great to use for Quilts of Valor. There is a second line, American Honor II that will be available early next year and I'm already making sketches of how I'll use that.



I have pictures of the individual quilts, but I'll save those for another post.

I am proud and honored to be a part of this event. It is such a privilege to present these quilts.

Since Allie is a senior and will be graduating, Conlin and I are already planning things for next year.  

Monday, October 29, 2018

Design Wall Monday

I've got the Patriotic Cheerful quilt top done, sort of...

Pardon the really terrible picture. It's been raining for quite some time and I could not get a decent picture. :-(



This is supposed to have a small border around it that is the same as the background fabric, but I'm not sure that I want to include it. I've decided to let this up on the wall for a little while and then make my decision. 

I was asked in a few e-mails about using this for a Quilt of Valor. The main concern was that the design was not patriotic enough (stars, etc.). I answered those e-mails personally, but thought that I would also answer here in case anyone else had concerns too.

I've been making QOVs for a number of years now and most of them have stars or something else that looks more patriotic. A couple of years ago I decided to incorporate a some "generic" designs too after a recipient asked if I had a quilt that did not include stars. He just did not like them. Fortunately, I did have a rail fence quilt and I swapped that out with the one he had received. 

I was not offended at all. Instead, I was very happy because had he not asked, I'm sure that the quilt he received would be sitting in a closest somewhere or even for sale at Goodwill. 

After that incident, I always have a variety of quilts available and am happy to swap out one for another if the recipient wants to do so. All the quilts are made using red, white (cream), and blue fabrics and many also include some gold fabric. I feel that no matter what the design, the fabrics I use make the quilts look patriotic. Plus, they always have a QOV label.

I've got a very busy couple of weeks coming up and am not sure that I'll have pictures of all the quilts before they are presented at the Veterans Day program at school. If not, I'll be sure to get pictures at the program and post them.


What are you working on today?

Check out the quilters' eye candy at 


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