Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Rick Rack Nines Quilted

My fellow guild member and quilter, Georganna, finished Rick Rack Nines and I picked it up today.  Sneak peak pics of the border had me very pleased and I was eager to see the whole quilt. 

I chose Baptist Fans for this very scrappy quilt made of  9" swap blocks I finally put together years after the blocks were made by the Quiltbuddies Yahoo Group I was in. 

More of the endless cheddar fabric in the borders.  Georganna said the borders demanded special treatment...

I think the cables are a great choice.  The green print backing was a Road to California find from Pineapple Fabrics, 108" wide backing.  Georganna commented that it had a very nice "hand", and I agree.  The quilt just fits on our Cal King bed.  The inspiration setting was from Bonnie Hunter's Rick Rack Nines quilt (Adventures with Leaders and Enders book) but my blocks are a lot bigger.   Very excited to have this finished top finally become a real quilt that we can use.  Hubby Grant likes it too, bonus!  I have a lot of binding to make and apply so I'd better get to it :)

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Stitching Weekend

Sewing room was abuzz with iron, needle, fabric and thread this weekend, as I tried to finish a long list of items to enter into the County Fair.  My first project was the Twilight Hopscotch block pillow, which was stalled at the usual stage, quilting. I told myself to "start by starting", and got the stitch-in-the-ditch portion done, added some straight lines to the corner squares, and then filled in with a very basic stipple in the background.  The star center seemed too empty, so added square in square shapes helped without bringing too much clutter to the simple star shape.  
An envelope backing and regular binding for the finish and this 16" pillow was ticked off the list.  I'm happy with it.   The cheddar fabric in the star has appeared in sooo many quilts, as I bought most of a bolt when the local JoAnn's store closed years ago.  Wish I had a bolt of that Marsha McCloskey background print, I love it. 

Modern Row Robin was next on the list.  It was already a quilt sandwich stalled at the quilting stage.  I doodled some ideas in my Bullet Journal and came up with a plan. 
The overlapping squares seemed just the right fit for my skills and patience, given the time crunch. Bravely, I just started marking squares and rectangles with my ruler and Hera tool.  The walking foot got quite a workout, as did my arms, turning this quilt so many times.  

There were a lot of threads to bury, and a hanging sleeve to sew on by hand, but I applied the binding entirely by machine. The top and bottom rows I made, from Heather Jones' Half Log Cabin class at QuiltCon. It is a very energetic quilt, with all the bright colors and contrast, but I like it.

Unfortunately I ran out of time and none of the quilts got a label, as I spent time adding a hanging sleeve to another quilt and closing binding corners.  All told, I have six quilted items entered--2 larger quilts, a baby quilt, two minis, and a pillow. The projects that didn't get finished will have to wait for next year's Fair, including the Metro Twist quilt, boo hoo.  C'est la vie! 

My sister was waiting for me at the Fairgrounds when I got there 1/2 hour from the entry deadline!  She entered some preserved goods as well as an Art Quilt.  The crocheted items seemed to outweigh the quilt piles, but I hope there are lots of great quilts to see when the Fair opens August 2nd. 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Design Wall Monday--Yep, more of the same

On my Design Floor are the last five Cross Reference blocks for the sofa quilt for son Nick. This quilt pattern is labeled as "Beginner" by the magazine (APQ April 2017), but the simple shapes belie the complexity of sewing 31 pieces into a 9" finished block, combined with an on-point setting requiring setting triangles, plus three borders.  I would label this intermediate in difficulty.

I sure love the way these blocks look.  This was the only sewing I did all week, between three evenings out and babysitting the grandsons one afternoon.  I got thinking back to the first quilt I made Nick, finished in July 2009, and went rummaging through the photo files. 

He wanted only black, blue, and gray in his quilt.  These blocks only had 20 pieces--far less than the 31 pieces in his current quilt blocks, lol. 

Poor light and a bit blurry in the photo, but this 88x96" quilt turned out pretty well, I thought.  It was a pattern called The Big Easy, from an APQ publication, Quilts and More, Winter 2006.  I doubled the number of square-in-square blocks for my version and made it larger--Nick's criteria being that his hands wouldn't pass the edge of the quilt if he spreadeagled them, and he is about 6'4", so you can imagine his wingspread!

Also on my design floor is one block from Kim Diehl's Twilight Hopscotch quilt pattern that I plan to turn into a pillow for the County Fair.  I have less than a week to get everything done. Yikes. 

See more design walls on Judy's Small Quilts and Doll Quilts. 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Design Wall Monday--July 9th

Happy Monday!  On my design surface today are the final blue blocks for Cross Reference (APQ mag April 2017), which I am making for my son.  I had hoped to have to top together by the weekend but that obviously didn't happen, between the hot sticky weather and a Saturday quilt class.  

Two fabrics are repeats and three are new; the cross block centers are fun and easy to sew and I enjoyed that part.  The tiny setting triangles, not so much!  I got the quilt's final cream setting side triangles and corner triangles cut as well.  Borders will have to be cut once the center is sewn as I'm making fewer blocks than the directions call for and will need to measure first.  I'm hoping to have all the blocks made by the end of this week, but have three nights out planned, so we shall see.

I have a finish to show, however small, lol!

This mini flag quilt's center was made two years ago, and it has waited a year for thread burying after quilting for binding to be made and sewn on.  I put the final hand stitches in the binding in Sunday. The HSTs finish at about an inch and were leftovers from the Kitchen Sink quilt.  The other fabrics are from scraps and stash. Love those deep indigo blue prints.  I simply machine quilted in the ditch and made Xs in the corner squares.

The Star Spangled Banner music print was in a gifted bag of fabrics from a guild member.  I'm considering entering this one in the County Fair.  It will need a label, something I seldom manage to add to quilts I keep!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Weekend Sewing

Saturday my sister and I attended the Moroccan Lantern class by Jen Carlton-Bailly (  Kathy chose to make the largest size Drunkard's path blocks at 6.5" while I chose the 3.5" size.  Jen's method included what she called "slop" in the templates, to allow for trimming to size after stitching.  It was a bit hard to wrap your head around the placement of colors at first, but fun to play with them! 

I webbed mine together while sewing to avoid turning the pieces out of order. The smaller size is really cute but definitely fussier to stitch.  Jen was a fun teacher and made many rounds of the room helping, chatting, and showing techniques.  I had no problems with the Essex Linen though several guild members expressed their prior difficulty with this type of fabric.  One thing about a darker background is the ability to use lighter prints without them getting lost in the background, which I enjoyed using from the charm pack of Wing and Leaf.

My finished block.  There is some incorrect trimming leading to non-matching points, but overall I enjoyed putting this together and will press on to complete more blocks.  I think a wall-hanging of 3-5 blocks would be fun and give me a chance to use lots more prints and colors.  My sister took Jen's other curved sewing class today, which included a lot of improv, and we will get to see her trunk show at our regular guild meeting Monday evening. 

Our guild has a challenge block monthly, which members are encouraged to donate for philanthropy quilts.  This month we went with our Fair Theme, "Rooted in Tradition".  I had pinned a block on our guild Pinterest board some time ago and had fun making this modernized Churn Dash block from a  tutorial at 42 Quilts for her Modern Monday series. 

I offset it when adding sashing to get it to the guild's desired 12.5" size, with the block being 6" finished.  So cute!  I had a lot of fun stitching this up.  There was also a lot of cutting in the sewing room today for the Cross Reference couch quilt for my son, still in progress.  More on that for tomorrow's Design Wall Monday.