Monday, December 31, 2018

Variation on a String Block {Jan/Feb CiL Block Drive}

Hello! And welcome to the Jan/Feb Covered in Love block drive post.  For the past three years we've made foundation pieced string blocks following this tutorial and made 50 string quilts!   (If you're new to CiL or the block drives skip to the end of the post for information.)


The annual scrappy string drive is a big hit with piece-rs, with me, and with the patients who receive quilts.  Hopefully this year's slight variation on the foundation pieced string block will still be a big hit with everyone. I thought i might be fun to mix it up and do something a bit different this year.



(If you had already started making some of our usual string blocks in anticipation of this year's drive, go ahead an send them in, too. I always have a few extra around I can put them together with.)


Cut a scrap piece of fabric to about 13.25 or 13.5" square (I always use old bedsheets, after you make one block you'll have an idea of how much lee way you need). Choose a square or rectangle piece of red fabric (any shade of red) between about 1.5"-3" square.  Place it at the corner of your foundation square right side up.


Pull out your string scrap box and place a strip along one edge of the square right side down. Sew a quarter inch seam through the foundation square, fold down the strip and press.


Continue adding strips, alternating sides log-cabin-style, sewing them right though the foundation square and pressing after each addition.


As you add each strip let them overhang the outside a bit.  Better to be too big than too small.


Like our usual string blocks, strings should be less than 2.5" wide. Any colors/patterns are allowed; "ugly" fabrics encouraged ;)  Straight lines and 90 degree angles can be approximate.







And that's the gist of it. Just keep adding strips and pressing.  If you have too much overhang underneath a strip just trim it with scissors.


When you get close to the edge of the foundation block press one last time. Allow your cat a few minutes to bask on the warm surface before moving to the cutting table.


Trim the block to 12.5" square, making sure not to cut off too much of the red square in the corner.


The foundation backings do make the finished quilt heavier, but not by as much as you'd think. On a scrappy quilt like this one, especially blocks made by so many different people and shipped across the country, they are invaluable to prevent stretching, warping, and fraying of seams.


I hope you enjoy these blocks and they help you to lighten your scrap bins a bit!


This block drive will run through February. You can make as few or as many blocks as you like and send them along to be assembled into quilts. The quilts are given to patients who pass away in a local hospital and the families take them home. Learn more about our charity on the main page here.  For the mailing address email CoveredinLoveTX@gmail.com or leave a comment (make sure you leave an email address for me to reach you at).

Quilt delivery!

You can also support Covered in Love with monetary donations (send a check or use the Paypal link on the left side bar), by volunteering to assemble and/or quilt tops, and by donating supplies and materials.  Send me an email at CoveredinLoveTX@gmail.com for more information.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Merry Christmas / Happy New Year from CiL


Thanks to Priscilla for donating these tops to Covered in Love that I finished for this week's post.  I hope you all had a great Christmas and you've got some fun plans for New Year.


This large, beautiful, vintage-looking Birds in the Air quilt will be a real treasure to someone.


I found the perfect vintage train travel fabric among Sandra's donations for the backing.


Next, a very non-vintage disappearing nine patch in bright purple, blue, and neon green. 


I added some peacock fabric from Sandra to make it a bit wider.


And I found some more peacock themed fabrics for the backing, too.


Finally, this nine patch chain top with some great novelty fabrics.


I quilted all three of them with a medium stipple and they washed up warm and cozy.


Covered in Love had a great 2018, here's to an even better 2019!


Yep, more peacocks on the back!  If you want to participate in CiL's last block drive of the year it isn't too late. Check the information at the bottom of the post and get your blocks in within a couple weeks. Or wait a few days and the post for the January block drive will be up!


Covered in Love is a 501(c)(3) charity that donates quilts to patients dying in the hospital, over 400 so far! The Nov/Dec drive is going on now.  Check out the main post HERE if you want to get involved.


Linking to  Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Finished or Not Friday

Thursday, December 20, 2018

True North


It's rare these days that I have a personal quilt to share, but I'm going to have a few this Christmas!  This quilt was originally intended to be a present for Christmas 2017. Only one year late is practically on time by most quilter's standards!


The quilt is large, 80x100" approximately, which was necessary because the recipient is so tall.  I did flying geese set in a Dutchman's Puzzle pattern on point. At the edges the geese thin out and in one corner some geese are breaking free, becoming 3D, and flying away.  It's a similar design to this quilt, which ironically I named "Fly South".


The colors cross fade from dark purple to light and dark yellow to light.  Although it took me for-ev-er to get this quilt done I'm really glad I did it and really happy with how it came out.


I made the 3D geese with two methods so that they would get bigger, as if they're popping out more and more from the quilt, as they went along.


I found the perfect backing in 108" width to go along with the quilt.  I'm excited that this finally got done right in time for Christmas (if a year late). I hope you all have a warm and Merry Christmas surrounded by family and friends!


Kittens: Waffles and Leena have now gone to their forever homes, leaving Sundae and Fudge.  Sundae has her paws crossed that her potential adopters will work out soon!


Covered in Love is a 501(c)(3) charity that donates quilts to patients dying in the hospital, over 400 so far! The Nov/Dec drive is going on now.  Check out the main post HERE if you want to get involved.


Linking to  Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Finished or Not Friday

Thursday, December 13, 2018

CiL Quilt Stars


Happy weekend! Isn't this quilt nice? Dhia put it together from blocks the NURTURE circle quilters of do. Good Stitches made.  The peach/pink/grey/navy color scheme turned out fantastic.  The Nurture circle has been supporting Covered in Love for about 3 years now.


Next, Mina sent in another of her scrappy village quilt tops, fifth one this year. These quilts are great because there are so many surprises hiding in the scrappy fabrics.


I backed it with some bright fabrics from Sandra and finished it with a stipple.


Finally, Kathy sent along a finished scrap quilt of her own with the latest batch she quilted for CiL.



Just in time to join the last of the string quilts in a delivery to the hospital.


Thanks ladies, you are all stars in my book!

Covered in Love is a 501(c)(3) charity that donates quilts to patients dying in the hospital, over 400 so far! The Nov/Dec drive is going on now.  Check out the main post HERE if you want to get involved.


Linking to  Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Finished or Not Friday

Thursday, December 6, 2018

String Quilts 2018 Wrap Up



At long last, the quilts from the Jan/Feb string block drive for Covered in Love are done! This was our largest block drive to date by far, producing 33 finished quilts, and I'm quite proud to get them all done in 2018!  I delivered them to the hospital in batches, so I merged the photo above to get all of them together. The season goes from spring to winter as you move left to right.

Blocks by Johanna, quilted by Angie

I took a front shot of each quilt as they were finished. The last 12 are here, and you can see the previous posts here and here.

Blocks by Pam, quilted by Angie

Huge thanks, of course, go to volunteer quilters Nancy K., Tammy S., Angie C., and Kathy C. who helped me get these done in a timely fashion.

Quilted by Angie

Big thanks as well to the many quilters who sent in blocks, backings and binding and spread the word about Covered in Love and our block drives.

Quilted by Angie
Most of the quilts from this drive ended up a generous 60"x70", a great size for covering up on the couch. There were also a few 50"x70", 60" square, and 70" square.

Pieced and quilted by Kathy

I made use of many of Sandra's donated backings with bold novelty prints of birds, flowers, cars, sports themes, and more.  Families often identify immediately with a themed fabric, whether it's on the back or hidden in the front.

Pieced and quilted by Kathy

Covered in Love has achieved many milestones this year: our largest block drive to date, becoming a 501(c)(3) non-profit, distributing more quilts than ever before.

Pieced and quilted by Tammy

Thanks to all of you who have made that possible! I wish I could share more stories with you about the impact your contributions have made, but hospital and legal privacy regulations make it difficult.

Pieced and quilted by Tammy

Suffice it to say that your donations make a very real difference in the lives of patients, families, and nurses on a daily basis.

pieced and quilted by me

Some of our quilts go to individuals who died quite suddenly, without warning or any time to cope with the idea. Some go to people who wasted away slowly over months or years until they were only a shell. Some go to people whose mind died long before, leaving their body to go on and on. Some go to people whose body gave out while their mind and memories remained as sharp as ever.

pieced and quilted by me

All these people have people who they leave behind, who care about them. This is something somewhat unexpected I have learned: even the most unpleasant, the most bitter, the meanest, most selfish, most dis-likeable people have someone cares about them.  They all leave behind someone who mourns them, notices the gap they left in the world. 

pieced and quilted by me

Our quilts provide a very meaningful keepsake for family members to remember their loved one by, and this year we reached more families than ever. 

pieced and quilted by me

Thank you to everyone, from all over, who contributed to make this block drive and others a success this year!


Obligatory kitten photo:


Covered in Love is a 501(c)(3) charity that donates quilts to patients dying in the hospital, over 400 so far! The Nov/Dec drive is going on now.  Check out the main post HERE if you want to get involved.


Linking to  Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Finished or Not Friday