Friday, December 20, 2013

Home for the holidays

  It's Friday, and we are staying home for the holidays......for a number of reasons.  Number one was the driving weather, and then the health of Sir Old Man's father has nose-dived this week with pneumonia and congestive heart failure.  Dad is back in the nursing home now and doing better.    And lastly, I have had the stomach bug that is going around.   Today finally, I can eat a little.  Not ready for chocolate yet, but soon I hope!

   The good news is that we will be here for nephew Remy's visit...and of course, the rest of the family ;)
I had word from a very reliable source that Remy was very taken with the Elf on the Shelf mystic.  So nothing would do, except to adopt one here.
   Mason Dinklejarrel arrived yesterday and made himself at home.  He prefers to be called Dinks and apparently loves mints.  I am so happy that Rudy was pleasant and agreed to share his space with Dinks.  I would hate to have them fighting.
   I know I am just a big kid at heart, but I love to see the wonder and delight in the eyes of those who still believe in magic.  So I am planning to have some fun with Dinks this season!
  Tomorrow begins the cooking ahead/baking time that I thought I would avoid this year.  But that is part of what I do and who I am.  So why fight it?
   There's a wonderful post from Wanda at Exuberant Color today.....her studios revealed!   You don't want to miss it.  Nothing like envy to make you want to get busy.
Happy stitching.

A little extra-----The Elf on the Shelf is magical.  He watches over the child and reports back to Santa each night.  When he returns the next day, he will probably be resting in a new place.  He often brings extra treats.  But you can not touch him, that could hurt his magical powers.  And he loves to hear how your day went and what good things you did each day.
  Imagine my 4 year old nephew up before dawn, using a flashlight to find his Elf!  We all need that little bit of magic each day.

Friday, December 13, 2013

A little gift making

  The last couple of weeks have been a bit of a blur.  December arrived and is half over before I come up for air.  First, comes the baking.....bread, and apple bread, and cookies....all those goodies for friends and neighbors.  Second, I jumped into making market tote bags to hold the good stuff----sort of a gift within a gift.  I did not realize how long 8 of those bags would take!     I did quilt the fabric---that took up a lot of time.  The bag is just a simple toe with no pockets, just lots of room for stuff!

   I finished up the last 2 yesterday and shopped today for a couple of  extra items for them.   This one is a "spa bag" theme....good book, candle, soap and scrubby.  I looked for a matching hand towel to include, but no luck today.
  I also did one with the "cooking" theme with a cookbook, chopping mats, and cake cover.  That one will be for my nephew's girlfriend who loves to bake.

  These were a lot of fun to do.... only wish I had planned further ahead to make them. All my ideas seem to hit at the last minute.  

  We are sitting on the fence about traveling to Michigan.....right now they are in a deep freeze and Sir Old Man is not keen on traveling in sub-freezing temperatures.  Getting through the mountains to head north is rough this time of year.
   In between everything else, I have been stringing along on these blocks using up some floral fabric scraps.  I have the foundation pieces cut for another 5 blocks, so that may be where it ends up.  I have no idea for the final arrangement.....but I think I will put a sashing between them for a window pane look.  Lynne at Never too hot to stitch   showed one today that she sashed....and I love how it turned out.
  Usually at this time of year, I recap  my year, and post plans for next year.  Honestly, I am tired right now.....this old gal is feeling the years.  I must need a strong cup of coffee and chocolate.....happy stitching.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Bingle Jells!

  Bingle Jells all the way! Oops, I just woke up from my long Autumn nap, and that should be Jingle Bells.  In case, you don't know me, I am Rudy the official and very sociable mascot for the Get Your Mrs. Claus On project.
   My Mrs. Claus had this bright idea a few years ago to make a few doll quilts to go along with the doll beds and cradles that the Greenville Woodworker's Guild  make each year.  Since  Sir Old Man is the woodworker and my Mrs. Claus is the quilter, the projects just complimented each other.
  Well, let me tell you, what she thought was a few doll quilts needed actually was  60 that first year.   That is when so many wonderful blogging quilters stepped up....actually sewed up a storm.....and helped my Mrs. Claus fill the need.  And the Get Your Mrs. Claus On project began.
    Since then, quilts arrive all through the year from around the world.  Each one special, and wonderful.  And a very big antler shake and thank you goes to that group of quilters from the HGTV Message Board.  This group of quilters have supported this project from several years now,  and really stepped up when my Mrs. Claus broke her shoulder.  They send quilts dedicated to every state in the USA and territories too.  You can't imagine how excited Mrs. Claus gets when she opens one of the packages and sees where it is from and which state it represents!

   This year close to 80 beds and cradles were made by those busy elves at the Greenville Woodworker's Guild.  In total over 540 wooden toys.....beds, cradles, chairs, push toys, wooden puzzles, cars, trucks, and fire trucks were made.  All of them to be given to various organizations that work with children----from hospitals, to child development centers, and rescue groups.  These quality toys and quilts are much needed and will be much loved.  And....a new addition was  bed/cradle mattresses and little pillows made by the wife of one of the woodworkers!   See what we started.....another antler shake.

  Anyway, on Saturday, I got to oversee the packing up of the doll quilts.  One giant, huge display was being set up at the woodworker's complex.  Twenty five woodworkers, wives, and student woodworkers---students of that Pesky Elf--- were on hand to unpack toys, set up tables, and turn it all into a wonderful display.  So, without any more words from me....enjoy the show of toys and quilts.

There are going to be a lot of very happy children this year....don't you agree?   Thank you all....each Mrs. Claus....for making this year a success from me---Rudy, and the Pesky Elf, all the toy maker elves, and of course, Sir Old Man and my Mrs. Claus.  Wishing you Merry Christmas and lots of jingle bell days.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Finally, the Faux Braid

   This series of posts has been a journey for me.....reviewing some past quilts and braid techniques, and hunting up info to share, and trying to some order into all of it.
Insight:  Developing a class or series like this is not is work!  So hug a teacher, they deserve it.

Quarter Log Cabin  block
   The Faux Braid is a new favorite now.....I think I could put one together blindfolded.  It works up fast and easy.  So what is it?  Simply the quarter log cabin block....with the variation of how the colors or values are placed.
   Generally or traditionally,  the quarter log cabin block  might look like the photo on the right.  Each round that is added to the starting square is the same fabric/color.
  This photo shows the change in placement for the Faux Braid using the quarter log cabin block.  Each round contains a light strip and a dark strip.  This arrangement creates a block that is half light and half dark.  Then when set together the blocks create a braid effect.

  By rotating the block for the layout, the diagonal bands are formed.  Note.....very little matching to worry with!  
   I call this one the soft version.  The fabrics are low contrast...a very soothing and restful effect for our troubled world.   A nice border and a little applique would finish it off nicely.

         And for the flip side.......a version done in leftover batik strips.  Same pattern, just different fabrics for a different and stronger voice.  This one reminds me of the blue Ridge Mountains that are nearby.

  The original tutorial is from Sharon at Vroomansquilts.    Be sure to say hello when you check it out.

  Based on her tutorial I put together a simple sheet with the construction details.  Click here for the printable PDF for the Faux Braid.  


    I had planned to take a side by side photo  for comparison on the deck today, but nature intervened.  It is 37 degrees, and raining here, so I resorted to the front porch again.   I just wanted the contrast of the 2 soft and the other stronger.  Whatever fabrics you prefer, the Faux Braid will be striking!

  Thanks to all for taking the time to read and comment on this series of posts.  I hope a few of you will try this fun technique, get over your fear, and figure out which one you prefer.    Send me a photo if you dare!
   If I am quiet for a few days....don't worry.  I have a lot of stuff to clean up in the sewing room, and  a couple to quilts to work on.  Wishing all a Happy Thanksgiving.  I am thankful this is done..... ;)

Happy stitching.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Create a star instead.....

   I went to continue working on the Faux Braid sheet....and I have misplaced it.  I am sure it is still somewhere in this computer, but where, oh where, did this gal save it?  Never fear, I decided not to panic but throw in this little idea I creatively borrowed (that is stole in real language) from a pin seen from  Etsy.
  This is just a quick sample, making it up as I went, so pardon the lack of precise measurements.

  •    Start with a plain square.  I used 3" in this sample.  Next time I would recommend a 3 1/2" square.
  •   Add a 2" by 3 1/2" strip to one side.  
  •   Add strip number 2---2" by 4".

  •   Repeat until you have added 3 rounds to the 2 adjoining sides.  
  •   Trim the band unit  like you would for a braid quilt.  I aligned the ruler line so that it goes thru the center points of the square and braid rounds and the cutting edge exactly on the edge of the square.  
  •    For the large triangles:  Cut a 5 1/2" square ( or a 6" square if you like to have fudge room to trim).  Cut on the diagonal to get 2 triangles.    Sew a triangle to each side of the band.
  •   Square up the sides if needed and square the unit to 7".  Note--- here is where I did my fudging by trimming the inner corner of the prints.    

  Now repeat the whole process until you get 4 blocks.

  Here's the beginning of your braided star.   Click here to see the inspiration quilt.
   If not a large about a Christmas table runner, or set on point for a wall hanging?

  Thanks to Nicki for suggesting I link these posts in the tutorials section for future reference.  I am always forgetting where I explained something and thought this was a great idea....I am working on it now.

  So the finale is the Faux Braid....I promise to get it up next week, even if I have to start from scratch!

Happy stitching.  

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Continue the braid: Find a focus

  Picking the colors and finding the focus for the French Braid is where you start naturally, and it appears to be the stopping point for many.  Once again I will send you to check out some of the examples pinned to my Braid Quilt board.  Begin by looking for the French Braid quilts and note the color combos and the focus fabric each uses.  Lots feature blues, and I love the one using fall tones.

  When I made my French Braid, I had just begun blogging and did not take enough photos to show my progression in the fabric selection.    So I am going to jump to this year and use the French Braid table runner to illustrate how I chose the fabric I used.

If you are afraid to try the braid technique.....this table runner is just the size to start with.  I left the photo large so you should be able to enlarge it and really examine the fabrics, too.
   The large center square fabric was my inspiration and focus.  It has a range of blue tones on a darker background with some softer yellow tones.
   I found a bright blue that I used for the smaller accent squares that was a very close match.  I could have used the yellow tone or a much darker blue for the accent squares.  Either would have been good, and just given a different feel to the runner.
   I used 7 different fabrics to create the braid run.....2 very light, 2 medium lights, 1 medium, 1 medium-dark, and ended with the focus fabric.

    This is the same photo in black and white.  All the color is gone and you see only the value of the fabrics.   Taking a photo of your fabric selection for any quilt is always a good idea, as it helps you see more clearly if the colors blend or contrast, or if one fabric just doesn't fit in.  I also use this technique when I do a bargello quilt.   This trick is a good one to use, especially with the braid technique.

Tips for your color scheme:
  •   Find a focus fabric, or one you want to use as your color scheme.  
  •   Now find 4-6 more fabrics based on the first fabric---select by color or contrast color.   Example---a fall fabric of golds and red tones.  Add a green print or two, and maybe use a golden brown as the accent square on the light fabrics and a lighter yellow with the darker fabrics.
  •   Be sure to have a change in value in the chosen fabrics....working from light to darker or visa-versa.
  •   Take a photo of the fabrics.  Line them up next to each other and see what happens.  Convert the photo to black and white.  Eliminate anything that doesn't fit and try again.  

   I pulled together a couple of examples to show.  I began with the dark purple print, found a fabric that had the same colors for number 2.  Then I went lighter in the purple, and next moved to a purple and yellow print.  Finally I found 3 lighter prints in the yellowish tones.  I would use a dark purple accent with these!  :)

  From leftover batiks strips.....I pulled 9 together that just might work!  But then, I find most batiks work well together.  So if you use batiks, be sure to get one or two very dark ones in there for dramatic effect.  
   So all of this is really a repeat of the selection process I use in general.  How you find a few good pointers in it.

  A few construction tips:

  •   To figure or at least estimate your length for the braid, it takes a little math.  Remember your strips will end up on point, so a 2 1/2" strip will really measure just over 2 3/4" when sewn into the braid length.  So I would roughly calculate by deciding on the length and divide by 3 to determine the number of strips I would need. So for a 60" braid length, I would plan on 20 strips (and probably throw one or two more in for good measure ).   It pays to be a little flexible with this technique! 
  •   If you have 7 fabrics chosen, you will need 3 cuts of each.  The repeating of the color run is what makes the design exciting. so plan on it.
  •  Accent square......chose your fabric for this square to contrast with some or all of the fabrics.  
  •  Accent square.....The accent square is added to just one of each of the strips for each "round" of the braid.  I first cut 1/2 of the needed segments.  Then I added a strip of the accent square fabric to a section of each fabric.  From this unit I cut the remaining segments---this unit became the second strip of each round.  It just saves a little bit of time and effort. 
  • Spray starch is your friend.....starch the braid runs before you trim them.

   Once you have the fabrics selected.....go for it. Cut those strips and stitch away.  I think you will be wonderfully surprised at what you can create.

  I will be baking for a couple of days, and preparing the final information on the Faux Braid.  Let me know if you have more questions.  Happy stitching.

Friday, November 15, 2013

The Oo-la-la Braid

  That's the extent of my knowledge of French.  So let's talk French Braid as in quilt.

   The  distinction between the Friendship Braid (on the left) and the French Braid  (on the right) is the accent square used in the French Braid.   The actual construction is the same in both.  The French Braid has the accent square that travels the length of the braid, and this is what carries the eye along the design.
  In both quilts I used separator strips between the bands of braid.  So I have the bias of the braid stabilized by the straight strip.

Another comparison photo....the two on the left are both done using the Friendship Braid technique, only the smaller one in the center has no separator strip.
  Tip:  When sewing bias to bias edge, pin a lot!    Be willing to do some easing if there is too much stretch going on.
   Tip:  Spray starch the bias.  This will help....just be sure to press and not iron in multiple directions.
 Tip:  I found that sewing with the bias braid band on top of the straight of grain separator strip worked best.  I was able to ease some fullness in.  Generally, instructions in books and such will tell you to put the bias on the bottom.  I found that only warped edges on this.

  The second thing to notice in the above photo is the width of the braid bands.  I used 2" strips in the Friendship Braids, and the bands were trimmed straight at about 5 inches.   I used  2 1/2" strips in the French Braid and the braid bands were trimmed to 9  inches.   How can that be?  It's a math thing.....that 1/2" gets multiplied when put on point and makes a big difference.
  For full detailed instructions of French Braids I highly recommend French Braid Quilts by Jane Miller.      Good photos, great inspiration, and cutting and sewing instruction.
   What I felt was lacking was how to select fabrics for a successful to achieve that blended look, etc.  So that is where I want to pass on my knowledge and things I figured out in this technique.  I am trying to consolidate a lot of info scattered throughout my older posts on fabric selection and creating  that blend, so bear with me.
    The "season" is quickly approaching.....and time gets eaten up with so many things.  I serve on the meal team at church and I have never seen so many requests and needs for meals.  This week I have been in the kitchen more than the sewing room.  And thanks for the great comments about this series of posts.  Happy stitching.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Are you brave enough for the braid?

 For the novice or those who live in fear of bias edges:
    Once you have your fabric selected, do some cutting.  I generally cut segments about 6" to 7".......the length you need to start with will really depend on your strip width.  Yes, you will have some tails---and waste---when you trim, but during the sewing process you don't have to contend with the bias.  Note----all the seams are straight easy to sew seams!

  In the photo--top right corner---a square starts you off.  Add a strip to on side.  Then add the second strip to the opposite side.  Repeat...and repeat.

  When the band is the length you want, you need to square it up.  You will need to cut thru the center of the square to get the base.  I chalked the cutting lines in on this sample.

   Tip:  I lined up the point of the square with a line on the ruler.  The points of each segment should fall on that same line.

  You will also find a variation of this that uses an offset center point......the final look is just a bit different because one side of the band has longer strips.  You decide which way you want to go.

  Tip:  I do not cut and trim off the sides until I am ready to either join them together or add the separating strip to the bands.  The less time the bias is "free to grow", the less stretch  I have to worry about.  

   In this photo, you can see the bands are sewn but the sides are not cut yet.  The bands were placed on the design wall until I was happy with the arrangement and had the separator strips prepared.   Once the bands are sewn and have bias edges!  Just plan ahead how you will work with them.
 In an email from Lynn at What a Hoot, she shared her tip:

I have spacers between my braids,  so there is a bias against a straight edge on each seam. If I were sewing braid directly to braid, I would definitely press them first with some *serious* starching to help control the double bias seam!

The Binding Tool   can be used as a template ruler for a braid quilt.  Remember to cut 2 layers for a regular and reversed strip.
For the very brave......If you are not afraid of bias, hate to waste an inch of fabric, and like to have the pieces cut exactly  to measurement, then read on.
   I ran across a quick video on Youtube that I thought was worth sharing.  From the Missouri Star Quilt comes a quick method of cutting pairs of braid segments using the Binding Tool as a template.   Since you probably have one of these, it's a free template.
  There is a new ruler on the market that is set up to cut pieces for a braid quilt, but I found it $$ and confusing.  So if I wanted a template, I would use the binding tool for sure.

Don't forget the check out the braid quilt examples on the Braid Quilt board on Pinterest.   I added a couple of new ones. I would love to share some of those quilt photos here, but don't want to run into trouble...evil I just pinned them.   I have mainly used narrow separator strips before.....but I am liking the wider separator bands I lot.

  What else can I say about braid quilts?  Hang on, there is more.  Next post will talk about French Braid Quilts and what makes them different.  Got to finish cutting strips, happy quilting!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Braids on the brain

     Braids on the brain.....braid ideas swirling around and around.  I promised a series of posts to share tips and techniques on braid quilts.  I set up a board on Pinterest for Braid quilts for inspiration and color combos.  And as a place to hold the tutorials that are available on different braid techniques.  So here we go.....
  A traditional braid is often called a pioneer braid, or a friendship braid.  The best tutorial for this can be found at Quiltville----of course!  Bonnie Hunter is the Scrap Queen and a braid is the perfect use for scraps. Her tutorial uses 2 1/2" strips and is presented as a border idea, as well as a quilt.  Her tutorial can be printed off from a PDF, too!
   A second choice for a tutorial I found is at Reanna Lily  Designs.   She has an interesting take on how to mix it all up when sewing the strips together.
Either of these tutorials will give you the basics on construction, so I am not going to repeat and make a mess of it.

Amish Braid Quilt
   The photo is "borrowed"---I know I will get into trouble over this, oh well---- from Modabakeshop and is a great visual example of how the braid is formed.   The bands of the braid are formed by adding a strip to one side of a triangle or square, and then adding a second strip to the adjoining side.  By alternating back and forth when you add the strips, a woven appearance happens.  This example uses Amish type colors that are very striking against the purple.

  And this leads to fabric selection.....exactly what do you want to make?  A scrappy version from your over-flowing basket or bin,  a two color version in red and white,  or maybe something  using that batik jelly roll.........what do you have in the stash closet, I promise it will work in a braid quilt.

  This is a small table runner I did using the braid technique to frame the center block....and the strips--some were strings--were different widths.  I just kept adding to one side and then the other to finally get the length I wanted.
What made it successful was the color......all blues ranging from dark to light.  

   In my closet there is a huge stash of floral doing a braid with florals a few years ago was a no-brainer.  I love to blend the fabrics so that the values merge and  melt into each other.  This close up photo shows  the multitude of floral fabrics in the wall hanging I made.
   So the first step.....pick your fabrics.  Stick to a color theme, or fabric type, or mix it all up.  That is where you begin.
   Next up will be a quick look at to really begin.  So is you have any questions....let me know and I can answer it here, too.
  Happy stitching.  

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Inspiration for a braid quilt

   Just for inspiration, I set up a new board on Pinterest.....Braid Quilts.   After a simple search,  I found a lot of different colorways, and styles.  (Note that some of them are mislabeled as French Braids when they are really traditional braids set in bands.)   If you have made a braid quilt....I would love to pin it.  Send me a link to your quilt.
   I am working up a series of posts....all on braid quilts.  I am trying to make you a bit curious....evil grin!
But please do send me your links....thanks.
Happy stitching.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Practice makes perfect! And a update

Last year I participated in the Free Motion  Quilting Challenge at SewCalGal's blog.  A year of concentrated effort and my skills greatly improved.  The challenge continued this year with a more limited schedule, and I chose not to enter in.  But.....a fellow blogger did.  And look what came in the mail a week or so ago from her.

  Janet at RogueQuilter made these two beautiful doll quilts for the Mrs. Claus project.  Love the color scheme of purple and soft yellow.   And see that beautiful quilting!  Her extra year of practice has made for some kind of perfection!  

   Not only has she got those feathers  and teardrops down pat, but the loop and curl is just beautiful that she used in one of the borders.  She is a big  encouragement and inspiration to me.   Thank you, Janet.....these are the perfect finish to a great year of doll quilts.
     I am pleased / glad / happy / over-joyed to report that the Roman Shades are completely finished.  I think my little rant last week was just the motivation to get them done.  I even used the left over pieces to make simple tier curtains for the guest bathroom.  Now, no scraps of home-dec fabric to worry with....yea!!!
    As a reward, I spent a very pleasant afternoon sewing some string blocks, without a care about the stuff still on the floor.  It felt good.  Today, I did pick things up and get some order back in there.  And I am beginning to stitch together some more of those quarter log cabin blocks for a faux braid.  A brief class  and handout is in the maybe you should cut some 2 1/2" strips  :)

Don't forget to vote for your favorite at the Blogger's Quilt Festival.  Voting is open thru Nov. 7.

  UPDATE......The Viewer's Choice Award Category is open for voting too!  And yahoo....................... Big Grin......guess which quilt is included?  Potpourri is #24 and I'm asking for votes if you like it  here.   Scroll almost to the bottom of the page (just before the comments) .  Vote by clicking in the corner on the heart.   

Happy stitching.

Friday, November 1, 2013

End of the month and what NewFO?

  Sometimes things just kick you in the behind.  This month was one of them for me.  Whatever I thought I would accomplish just got pushed aside, or covered up in other things. Being gone for a week just compounded my delay in progress, and those Roman Shades that were to be so easy......ugh!
   Roman Shades.....the next time I get such a bright idea, someone please remind me to re-think my plan.  I literally spent an entire afternoon attempting to get the pieces taken apart.  Sir Old Man came to my rescue, as usual, and used some of those tools in the shop to remove the splines to get things apart.  Then there was the lining that took twice as much as I had calculated.  And the cording that took 3 times what I now you have the idea.  They still are not finished and I can not see the floor of the sewing room.  When I do get these done, I am done with home-dec stuff!

 October's two finishes are a saving grace.  Pinwheel Pot Luck is going to Habitat for Humanity.  It has been hanging around for about a year....a NewFO that finally got finished.

  Potpourri was a NewFO last month and a nice finish for October.  I had intended to use this lap quilt as a class sample.  Instead, it is going to be donated for an auction to raise funds for a girl with excessive medical expenses.

November plans:
   Make another faux braid for a class sample...NewFO.
    Clean up the sewing room floor.....finish those shades.
     Take a deep breathe and find the "quilt mojo" under all the mess.

  Don't forget the Blogger's Quilt Festival that is going on.   Potpourri is entered in the Throw Quilt category.....hint.
Linking to Cat Patches for the NewFO monthly.     Happy stitching.   

Friday, October 25, 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2013

    Welcome to the Blogger's Quilt Festival!

When I saw that the date for the Festival was so near, I got really motivated to finish this quilt up.

    I love simple....easy blocks that let the fabric do the work. And secondly, I love braid patterns.  So  this little design fit the bill on both counts.  The block is a simple quarter log cabin block that creates a faux braid design.    When set side by side, the design emerges as a diagonal braid.
  I first saw this layout at Vrooman's Quilts, and fell in love with it. I have a huge stash of floral fabrics so stash shopping was easy.  I used primarily medium value fabrics  to contrast with all the very light values.
  For a great tutorial on this block, visit Vrooman's Quilt.   Sharon did a super job with the tutorial.  

   When choosing the color for the narrow insert border, I  auditioned several colors before selecting the periwinkle color.  I loved how it made the blue colors in the floral prints pop.  
   I filled the light area with free motion feather quilting.  And wavy plumes of feathers were used in the border.  


 Once finished, it needed a name.  The first thing that popped into my head was that it reminded me of  scattered potpourri.. 
    So Potpourri  it is!

Potpourri  finished at 45" by 60".
Category is  Throw Quilt.  

  Enjoy the Festival, visit lots of bloggers,  and find tons of inspiration.
   Thanks to Amy and all the sponsors for making this happen.
And thanks for stopping by.
Happy stitching.

Thursday, October 24, 2013


Blogger's Quilt Festival -  I got motivated to finish up the floral quilt of quarter log cabin blocks when I realized that the Bloggers' Quilt Festival  was so close.  The Festival begins tomorrow.....and nominations for favorites in each category begin.
    I jumped on it and got the quilting done.  I  am still taking photos for tomorrow's post.   So come back then to see the full quilt.
  Here's a peek at the border quilting I used.  I borrowed a page from LuAnn's sketchbook of borders for the outer border.  I modified it to fit my style of free motion feathers.  The "waves" of feathers in the border have different numbers of plumes....some 3, or 4, or 5.  And I threw in a few extra curls to fill in things.

   Now if I can just find a shady enough spot to finish up the photos.  We had our first frost last night and lots of trees are leafless already, and it is windy!
Till tomorrow....happy stitching.  

Friday, October 18, 2013

Scrappy Pinwheels quilt

   Done!  A finish.....finally.
    The center section has been hanging around for about a year.  Nine blocks made using the "5 minute block" that I talked about last August. Click here for that post.
   Since it was square, I added a row of those leftover pinwheels from one of Bonnie Hunter's patterns to the top and bottom.  They sure have come in handy for finishing off quilts.  I probably have another 20 of them, so I am sure they will pop up again.
  I finished it off with a piano key border.  And the binding is whatever was in the binding bin!  I love mixing it all together.

   Swirly quilting around the pinwheels, which are the dimensional geese that are stitched down with a curved edge.

 Size finished is 48" by 65"....a small lap quilt that I am donating to Habitat for Humanity.

   And just a little more quilting going on.  This is the quarter log cabin that has the diagonal bands.  Right now I am quilting the light area with feathers.  I will use a large stipple thru the print fabric bands as little stitching will show.  Yikes, I could actually get this one finished this month, too!

   Guess you can tell the back is much better, even with the long ride last week. I am so glad to be stitching again.....I need the therapy of it.  :D

Happy stitching.

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