Sunday, September 14, 2014

HSTs on the Wall

Monday again. Where does the weekend go?

Today this is what's on my design wall. A bunch of HSTs in boy friendly colors. I am still rearranging them right now; haven't committed to a layout yet.

Linking up to Judy at Patchwork Times.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Scrappy Crumb Paint Box

Well, this one took waaay too long to finish, but finally the scrappy crumb jar paint box quilt is done! What got me motivated? Starting my next crumb project, of course! I only wanted to have one going at a time :)

All these little scraps measured 2" x less than 2" to start. I grouped them by color and sewed them in to long chains which I turned in to blocks.

The blocks are sashed in half an inch of white fabric and set in a black and white crossweave that reads as a grey. For me that cross weave makes the quilt. It is so soft! It gives the quilt such lovely texture and depth.

I quilted it was oddly spaced straight lines in various colors. This is the first time I have tried straight line quilting in a while. Ever since I learned to FMQ and realized how much easier it is I haven't looked back! That said, it worked out pretty well. Minimal puckering at the intersections of seams.

I did squeeze in some FMQ; I did a stipple inside of all the scrappy squares in a matching color.

For the backing I used some more of the IKEA numbers print that I love so much. I think the black and white contrasts really nicely with the bright colored scraps.

The quilt finished at 45"x60", a good size for a baby or toddler.  I don't have any plans for it yet, here's hoping it finds a good home soon!

Linking to Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Autumn Scrap Quilt

 This week on the design wall, it's yet ANOTHER new quilt top. Well, it wasn't quite assembled yet in the picture, but it is now. This was made from some of the batik scraps that Judy sent to me.  Don't these colors just scream "Fall"?  We're still deep in the heat of summer here in Texas, but I know Fall will come, some day.  I hope!

Linking to Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Lonestar WIP Finally Finished!

Well, I knew it had been a long time, but after looking back in the blog archives the last time I really worked on his quilt was April of 2013! Ouch. It's been folded up, basted and partially quilted ever since then.  What held me up was filling in all the negative space around the stars I had straight-line quilted. I had only started FMQ in January of that year and I lacked the confidence to do anything more than a stipple, and I wanted to do something more "special" that stipple!

Over a year and a lot of FMQ later I have decided that the stipple is pretty awesome, especially when it comes to finishing a project quickly! So I unfolded this baby, dusted it off, and stippled in the rest of the background.

The pieced star was made based on Better Off Thread's tutorial. Please forgive the less than stellar meeting of the points! There are some cute fabrics in there, including the little mini marching elephants I used in this quilt.  I quilted the star by outlining both sides of the seam using my walking foot as a guide. Doing that gave me the idea to quilt a couple more partial stars in the negative space using the same motif.

This kind of quilting is really hard to get a picture of! There is most of a star on the upper right of the quilt and a corner of one on the lower right.

Wilson assisted with pictures, as per usual. As you can see, I did indeed do a loose stipple in the space around the stars.

I love this pieced back almost as well as the front. Because I was using brown thread on the front, and didn't want to fight with the FMQ tension trying to get it just perfect I opted to use brown on the back too. The contrasting thread shows through all the quilting designs.

The Michael Miller Wooden Horses came in a scrap pack from Hawthorne Threads and I have used every stitch of that fabric! Love those little horsies with the doily type motif on them.

The large textured aqua came from Connecting Threads, don't remember exactly what color it was. That orange plaid came from a scrap pack, too. And of course there's the IKEA number fabric.  The quilt is kind of a funny shape, about 55"x70", so it's long and skinny.

I have had in mind to give this one to some friends of mine if I ever got it done... but I think I might give them a choice of a couple different quilts I have on hand. Every time I have done that people surprise me with their choice!

For the first time in a long time I have no quilts sitting around partially quilted and unfinished! What finishes are you celebrating this week?

Linking to Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Disappearing Hourglass Blocks

I so enjoying linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts Friday Finishes each week and looking at what everyone else has finished!  This week I saw this quilt made from the Missouri Quilt Company's Disappearing Hourglass Tutorial and wanted to make a similar one immediately.  The stars are perfect for using scraps, and look so delicate and girly.

I pulled these fabrics from my stash using the colors in that plaid in the center.  I will probably remake the green blocks in fabrics with more contrast. These blocks are fun to make and come together quickly, I already have the pieces cut for a dozen. I am planning on a 36"x48" quilt for donation.

On the design floor, as it were, are lots and lots of batik strips sorted from the generous scrap box Judy sent me.  No immediate plans for these, I am just enjoying looking at them for the moment.

Finally, I am working on sewing together crumb units for my latest scrap quilt. 282 down of 1225 needed!

Of course what I really need to do today is baste some of the tops I have done. Sigh.  Basting is my least favorite part.  What about you?  Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Fresh;y Pieced.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Quilters Are the Nicest People

Quilters are the nicest people, and I have the proof!  Remember the 10 Quilty Secrets post from a week ago?  One of my secrets involved my love of scraps, but a lot of other people admitted that they never use their scraps, some even throw them away! 

I tried to get Wilson to pose for some perspective but was being contrary.  It's probably 12" square and 18" tall!
Judy from Quilt Paradigm said she only keep her scraps because she knows she is supposed and generously offered to send me some of hers. This big ol' box showed up today!

Look at that, full up to the top with beautiful Oakshots, batiks, and prints.

I spent a good four hours sorting, pressing, and trimming my way through this box like a kid in a candy store.  Holy cow, what a haul!  I have already separated out fabrics for a few projects that immediately came to mind and bagged them up, can't wait to get started.

Thank you Judy!!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Distortions {July do. Good Stitches}

The July Nurture Circle do. Good Stitches quilt is done!  I designed the block for this quilt based on the Fibonacci Sequence, a really cool natural, mathematical phenomenon. You can read the original post and tutorial for the block here.

Block tutorial available here
After seeing how well the final illusion works I decided to name this quilt Distortions.  The layout for the blocks came from a picture I found at McManus Designs.  It's the ratios of the blocks, from the Fibonacci Sequence, that creates the curving effect.

For the quilt each circle member made (2) 10" finished blocks (and a few made extra) to give us a 50"x60" finished quilt. I broke my own cardinal rule of quilt bees with this one: never request a block that will rely on seams matching up. But the girls in my group are superstars and it worked out fine!

I quilted the top with my walking foot with lines that follow the design.  It's easiest to see from the back. Thread choice for quilting was an issue with so many different fabrics in the top, I was afraid that highly contrasting thread would be distracting and detract from the illusion.

After researching I decided to try invisible thread and bought Sulky's clear poly.  I had read before that some invisible threads have issues with heat from an iron or the dryer. Although I never iron my finished quilts I do dry them. However, the Sulky thread had good reviews and after a couple trips through the dryer seems none the worse for wear. I have even found a few stray thread tails on my ironing mat and they don't seem to be affected by the heat.

Aesthetically the invisible thread worked perfectly. It seems to take on the color of whichever fabric is passes over.

Backing is the IKEA numbers print again. I figured it was perfect for a math-centric quilt. I also included the 4 extra quilt blocks I had and pieced the label right in.

This quilt will soon by on its way to My Very Own Blanket, a charity that gives blankets to children in the foster system.  Thanks as always to the ladies of the Nurture Circle, this was a fun one!

Linking to Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.