Friday (mostly) Finish: Charmed and Spellbound

When Cotton and Steel's Spellbound came out earlier this year, I instantly fell in love.  I love creepy and spooky fabrics, but they're usually too "Halloween."  But these prints are something that I'll want to have around all year.  (Which is good, since I didn't get this quilted up in time to use while watching Halloween movies.)

Cats!  I had no idea how creepy they were in the sneak peek photos, and it's pretty hard for a pink cat to be creepy.

It's slightly embarassing how often these spiders made me jump.  The yellow version with silver spiders, not so much, but these black spiders are just the right size to get me when i'm not wearing my glasses.

Fat Quarter Shop was nice enough to send me a layer cake and a charm pack of Bella Solids in charcoal to make another Layers of Charm quilt.  Once I had all the blocks sewn up (which was fast) I decided to play around with how I could lay them out to make different shapes.  I was surprised with how many layouts I came up with for such a simple block, but that shouldn't be a shock for anyone who has ever played with other simple blocks like the Half Square Triangle.

After much deliberation, this layout seemed the best for these fabrics.  The black triangles kind of remind me of jack-o'-lantern teeth, and the octagons will be perfect for quilting spiderwebs.

This is the next of my quilts to go on the long arm after I finish up some more customer quilts, but the longer I wait, the more I think about adding borders.  Maybe just some more Bella black?  I can't decide, and the cat's no help.

Thanks again to the folks at Fat Quarter Shop.  Head over to their site for the Layers of Charm pattern, and have fun playing around with their setting!  

Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish it up Friday!

Friday Finish: A Bengal Quilt with Hawthorne Threads

This summer, Hawthorne Threads started putting out their own fabric lines.  They all looked really cool, but with so many fabric lines coming out these days it got lost in the shuffle.  But luckily, I subscribe to their newsletter and they featured a great mosaic of their Bengal line that I just couldn't get out of my head.  

Hawthorne was kind enough to send me a bunch of fat quarters from the line, and an amazing backing fabric.  Because they're digitally printed, it all came on one giant cut of fabric.  At first I was pretty surprised at how strange the fabric was.  It's pretty stiff, probably from the printing process, and it's a tight weave, similar to Art Gallery, so while it cuts amazingly, you really need a sharp needle to sew it.   My Juki was able to sew it without a problem, but it was loud, like it had to punch through the fabric.

The other strange thing, was when I quilted the fabric, every last needle hole was very pronounced.  You could see through them, when you held it up to the light.  Once you washed it, everything was fine.  The fabric softened up really nicely and all the holes closed up.  Now, you can't tell it apart from a quilt made from any other fabric, and I wouldn't worry about mixing these fabrics with others in a quilt.

I will say, that I had some bleeding.  Hawthorne suggests you wash your fabrics first, probably because it's so stiff from the printing, and it has some excess dye.  I'm a sew first, wash later girl, so I ignored this tip and threw it into the wash with two color catchers.  Neither color catcher got any dye, and the front was perfectly fine, but the back bled in a few spots.  I'm hoping that the more we wash, the lighter they'll get.

Anyway, back to the quilt.  The mosaic from the newsletter was just squares of the one print from the Bengal line.  So I got every color of that print, cut it into squares, and sewed them together.  

Because they were printed on a very wide fabric, I had a bunch of fabric leftover with a couple inches of the print, the selvage, and then the extra white fabric beyond that.  I cut that to the width of my squares, and added it around the edges to bring it out to the size of the backing.  So all along the edges, you get little peaks of the selvages and Hawthorne's tag line "from two love birds who love fabric." 

I love the backing!  Most of their lines feature a backing like this and I was so excited that they offered to send me one for this quilt.  While I was sewing, I had the backing up on my wall and I kept humming "Eye of the Tiger."  It was very motivating.

I just love all the little details that they put into the backings.  It's huge, but you can spend a lot of time picking out different shapes and doodles.  

Thanks Hawthorne Threads for sending me this fun fabric to work with!  

Linking up with Amanda Jean for FInish it up Friday!

WIP Wednesday: Yarn and Stuff...

Here's what I've been up to on Instagram!

I've been completely taken by spinning yarn!  I made a two ply practice yarn that was fat and loose.  And while it was real yarn that I was able to knit with, I really wanted to make a nice, tight, DK-type yarn.  (Sara at Knotty Gnome spins beautiful yarns, and I've been following her Instagram feed for inspiration.) 

So I pulled some more roving from my friend's stash and set to work trying to make the yarn I wanted.  I spun the single plies tighter and thinner so that I could ply them together tighter.  It wasn't perfect, because I'm still perfecting my ability to eyeball the twist, but it was a lot closer.  I'll keep working on keeping my twist consistent and my plies thin.

And I've started working on some Christmas gifts!  My daughter has gotten very excited about this one doll she has that I've made some clothes for already.  Last week, as I was putting her to bed, she told me that her doll couldn't sleep because she didn't have any pjs, so I obviously pulled some flannel and whipped up a nightgown.  

Then she started making her doll a bed out of a box and an old baby blanket, and I had an idea.  I made a quick pillow and pillowcase, and started working on a mini quilt for the doll's bed.  These are all one inch squares, that finish to a half inch, and they take forever!  So it's a good thing I'm starting now.

Quilts are getting labels and sleeves and heading off to a show!  My guild is putting on a special exhibit at the Quilters Gathering in November, so we finalized our selection of quilts last week and started everyone working on that last step of prep work.  I have four quilts in the show, two smallish quilts and two bigger ones, so I prepped the two smaller ones and handed them off.  The two bigger ones still need a solid washing before they can be sleeved and labeled, so they'll be my project in the next couple weeks.

And if you guys are in New Hampshire next month, you should check out the show.  We have a really great pile of quilts that we'll be showing, and the show has some really great teachers doing workshops.  Should be good times.

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!

Friday Finish: Rainbow Dash Quilt

This is one of those crazy ideas that wormed its way into my head after scrolling through Instagram and wouldn't be quiet until it was finished.  The original idea was from @_glass_half_full, but I first saw Kitty Wilkin's first few blocks, and had to make my own.

These are seriously easy blocks to make.  I started with six inch blocks, sliced randomly across at any angle, then added a strip of fabric from my scrap bins.  I always love a project that gives me a chance to use up some scraps.  And I was able to make some almost fussy cut, like these animals from one of the Cotton and Steel lines.  

After the first handful of blocks, I settled on a light gray background, which was not an easy choice since I don't have a huge pile of light gray fabrics in my stash.  Actually, the prints I used here are pretty much it, but there was enough variation to keep the scrappy vibe.

After a few more blocks, the rainbow started to become the obvious arrangement.  I seriously can't help but arrange things in rainbow order. 

My original plan was to cut the squares back into 6 inch squares to make everything fit together nicely, but I once I had the rows laid out, I liked how they were staggered.  It was kind of magic how most of the rows were already pretty close to the same length.  So I sewed them into vertical strips then lined the pink row up as I sewed them all together.  I only had to add fabric to one strip, and then trim off the excess in a few other rows.  

When it came to quilting, I had a plan about doing a lot of vertical and horizontal lines, then adding some hand stitching in a rainbow of perle cottons.  That was the plan right up to the point that I loaded it onto my long arm and was about to go.  There was just something about those horizontal rows of quilting space that I just couldn't resist.  So I went for it.

For a quilt that started on a whim, it turned out really great.  It's a little smaller than most of my quilts, but it's just big enough to lie under on the couch as long as you're alone or with a cat.  And it'll be getting a hanging sleeve for now and heading to my guild's show at the Quilters Gathering in November. 

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish it up Friday.  And crossing this one off my list for Q3 of Adrienne's 2015 Finish-Along.

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side

Mini Charm Challenge: Rainbow Byte Mini Quilt Tutorial

When Kylie put out the call for people to join her Mini Charm Challenge, I immediately joined in.  I've been staring at a pile of mini charm packs for a while, and could not figure out what to do with them.  I was close to just pulling them apart and sorting them into my scrap bins, but that seemed like a waste of perfectly sorted fabric.

With someone challenging me to make a thing with my charms, I came up with this mini quilt pattern.  You can make it in solids like mine or with prints, and you can even just use scraps.  I sorted mine into a rainbow, but you could go random or monochromatic.  While making it, I kept coming up with new variations, and I'd love to see what you guys do with it.

 

The whole thing starts with a charm pack and yardage of your background.  I used this darker palette of solids from Michael Miller with some American Made Solid in Taupe.  I suggest getting a yard, but I ended up using about 3/4 of a yard for my mini.   More background gives you more options.

mini charm rainbow.jpg

I pulled these neutrals out of my stack.  My plan was for color!

Cut your charms in half.  Charms are 2.5 inches square, so you'll end up with two rectangles that measure 1.25 x 2.5.  

You'll also need to cut the same size rectangles from your background.  For my layout, I needed about the same number of background rectangles as color, so I just cut until my stacks were about the same height.

Sew one of you color pairs to one background rectangle, and press.  (I'm a side presser, so I pressed toward the color.)

Then sew the other color to the first pair, making a nice color sandwich.  

At this point, I brought them to my design board and laid them out.  I ended up with six columns of color, with the darkest colors on bottom.  

This is where you can really play with it.  If you had plenty of charms, you could add more rows or columns.  If you had fewer, you could play with the negative space above or below the columns, or in between colors.  

Once you've got a layout that you like, use your leftover background rectangles to sew the columns together.

At this point, the pattern becomes more improv, which I love.  Add sashing to the sides and tops of your columns so that you can join them together.  My sashing between the columns is 1.25 inches wide. 

If you look at my seams, you can see how I put this together.  I added sashing to the sides of my green column.  I then added more height to my red/yellow and teal/blue columns, so that I could sew those to the green column.  I then added height to that whole section, so that I could sew it to my tallest column, the purple/pink.

At this point, I added a bottom row of background, and thought that I was done, but I wanted it to be more in the center of a taupe field.  So I cut strips that were six inches wide and sewed them to the sides and top and bottom.

I'm so in love with how this turned out, and I'm glad that Kylie made me do it!  I've not gotten around to quilting, because my machine isn't behaving enough for quilting, and the long arm has been full!  I might just do rows of straight vertical lines to highlight the columns, and I have half an idea about adding in a couple lines of stitching in the column's color as well.

We're nearing the end of the hop, but you should go back and visit all the other fun mini projects!

Sept. 14 – Jennie (cloverandviolet.com/blog
Sept. 15 – Lisa (L1sapeterson.blogspot.com)
Sept. 16 – Sarah (goer.org/sarah)
Sept. 17 – April (aprilrosenthal.com)
Sept. 18 – Nina (ninawithfreckles.wordpress.com)
Sept. 19 – Konda (moosequilts.com)
Sept. 20 – Mary (seemaryquilt.com)  <-- you're here!
Sept. 21 – Kylie (sewkylie.com)

 



Friday Finish: I Spun Some Wool!

There's this feeling when you first make a thing.  When you work and work, and learn a new skill, and in the end there's a product that you've made that looks and feels just like the thing you can buy in the store.  

I had that feeling after I made my first quilt.  I wrapped myself in the soft warmness and felt like the champion of the world.  Many quilts later, that feeling is still there, but less so.

I got that same feeling when I finished spinning my first batch of roving into yarn.  It was real yarn!  You could pull on it and it didn't break!  It was largely consistent in thickness, and overall, not too thick!   I made everyone look at it and touch it.  

So now my goal is to spin more and more wool.  The woman who taught me showed me all her spinning tricks, like drafting wool with the spindle still spinning (I'm still rocking the park and draft) and she even did some craziness where she draped the spindle over her outstretched hand so she could spin over a yard of yarn in one go.  I was mesmerized and I want to master all those tricks.  

This is next up.  It's wool that a friend was gifted, so we don't know what it is, but it's smoother than the brown wool, which will make it a little more difficult to spin.   And once it's spun, I plan to ply it with the brown.  I'm hoping the contrast will make it easier to see where I need improvement.

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish It Up Friday!

The Time We Moved a Heavy Thing

My sewing space is on our three season porch, so in the winter I set up my sewing machine on the dining room table and I take super fast runs into the porch to pull fabric or get more thread.  

So when I got  my long arm in December, the only place for it was also in the dining room.  We pushed the dining room table up against one wall, making just enough space to stand in front of the machine.  It made family dinners super awkward because one person was always wedged against a wall, and having friends over to sew was a tight squeeze.

Knowing that the situation couldn't last, and that hubs had done some pretty serious upgrades to the pellet stove (our main source of heat), we opened up the porch early this year.  It was freezing, but our stove warmed it up pretty quick.  I was able to move my Juki out there and sew comfortably.  I might need a space heater in the dead of winter, but it was ready to be used year round.  

So last weekend, my long arm was moved out there.  I love how much light I have now!  Along with all the windows, there's three skylights, and it gets sun all day long.  And now I get to sew facing windows instead of a wall.

The sewing space also has a bunch of new scrap buckets.  The scraps were living in a pile under the long arm in the dining room, also in a giant plastic bag in the porch, and there were two fabric baskets that were wedged behind my sewing machine.  It was just a bad scene.  

Since most of my sewing is scraps, they deserved to have a real place with real organization.  So I pulled out my copy of Sunday Morning Quilts by Amanda Jean Nyberg and Cheryl Arkinson, and started making these colorful fabric baskets.    

I love making the slabs.  They're a really great quick sew, but I thought that making the buckets would eat up more scraps than they did.  Each bucket is filled to the top, so I need to do some more scrap projects, and hopefully now that they're organized by color it'll inspire more color combinations.

Friday Finish: Vinyl Organizer

Sometimes I see something on Instagram that I just want to make.  I don't like waiting for patterns, tutorials, or whatever.  And to be honest, if I bought every pattern and book for everything I wanted to make, I'd never have money for the fabric to make anything.  

So when Aneela Hoey came out with her Double Pocket Pouch pattern, I thought to myself, "I know all about zippers and pouches, I don't need to buy the pattern."  I was super wrong.  I had to redo so many things while making this, I'll just buy the pattern the next time I want to make one.

I made the outside first.  The geese were just some practice blocks that I had made before, so I found some matching scraps and made the back panel.  I have a wallet with a back zipper, so I added one here, because more zippers is always the answer.  

Then I made the inside, and everything went sideways.  I measured my front, tried to account for seams, zippers, and whatnot, and made the vinyl panel.  Even after measuring and mathing, it was still too big.  So I had to trim top and bottom, then cut a bit out of the middle and sewed a strip of fabric over the edges.   In the end it worked, but the constant fixing is not fun when you're dealing with vinyl.

And  you may notice that my zipper is still super long.  The original has a tab that hangs on the outside, but I'm not in love with that look.  So I left it long, tucked it in, and decided to give it a test run.  By now I know that it works like that, and could cut it and finish the end, but I've just not gotten around to it.

In the end, it worked out.  All the zippers work and it fits my pile of felt tip pens and washi perfectly, so I call it a success, but I wouldn't make another without the pattern.  

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish it up Friday!

Friday Finish-ish: Round Trip Quilts

For the last couple months (really almost a year), I've been participating in a great round robin.  Our group is so talented, and the quilts are all wildly different.  Each month it's exciting to see what you'll receive and a little nerve-wracking.  Many of the tops are out of my comfort zone in color or style, and the more people add, the better they get.  

Luckily, when I got Christina's quilt (of Wips and Tuts) I knew exactly what I wanted to do.  She had an autumn theme, which made me scratch my head while I was looking at the progress shots on Instagram, but when I opened it up, I knew it needed foxes.  

I used Elizabeth Hartman's Fancy Fox pattern, and pulled a bunch of autumn colors.  I loved the light blue background that both Jenn and Leanne had used, so I continued that color theme.  

I packed it up and sent it on to Chelsea for it's last addition.  Her plan had also been foxes (great minds!) so I'm curious to see what she adds now that I've beaten her to the punch.

Here's a pic that Leanne posted of my quilt.  I'm so in love with what everyone has done with it and can't wait to get it back in September!

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish it up Friday!

My New Fave Pattern: the Curvy Clutch

When you participate in swaps, you always want to add some goodies.   I had bought the Sew Together bag pattern with the intention of adding that to this year's swap packages, but after making one I decided that it was just too much work when you have multiple swaps happening.  So when the Curvy Clutch pattern came out (and it's free!) I downloaded it hoping to have found a perfect swap extra.

The first one I made was the Lizzy House one.  It went so fast and was really well written, so every step was pretty easy.  I only had to check myself once when attaching the zipper, but that's just a good idea whenever zippers are involved.  

I didn't add piping or anything to mine, mostly because I didn't have piping in the right colors, but also the fabrics are enough on their own.  I think i'm going to buy a pile of piping and rick rack to try with this pattern, and maybe leather for the top accent panel.  There's so many on Instagram under the hashtag #curvyclutch that you can scroll forever and get all the inspiration you want.

These are just the right size for pens and washi tape, or you could fill them with some sewing supplies for sewing on the go.  I think big scissors will just fit in these, but it might be a squeeze.  I enlarged the pattern and plan on making a larger purse-sized one with a strap.  And I'm going to try fusible fleece as my interfacing on the next one.  I think it'll have a nicer stand, especially if the pattern is enlarged. 

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish it up Friday!

Friday Finish: Lizzy House Mini Swap

After such a rough start to my Cotton and Steel Mini Swap, I really was against joining another swap.  I was really worried about getting another quiet partner, and I was thinking of thinning out my to do list, but then my friend Sarah signed on to be one of the swap leaders for the Lizzy House Mini Swap, so I knew I would be in good hands.  

My partner was awesome.  We had very similar style and she was up for anything.  And the best part, was that her IG was full of photos!  Win!

So my first step was to gather all my Lizzy.  I'm a fabric hoarder, but didn't think I owned much.  Ha!  I just kept finding more and more in my stash (even after I had finished my mini).  My partner really liked Catnap, which I was a little light on, but a friend generously let me cut some of hers up.

I brought my pile of Lizzy to my guild's retreat in April without a plan, but once I started looking at the fabrics I had, I knew that the best direction was something that would let me fussy cut.  I separated my fabrics into a pile of fussy-cut-friendly fabrics and a pile of blenders and noticed that there was a complimentary blender for each fussy, which is perfect for Elizabeth Hartman's Sparkle Punch pattern. 

I cut up all my white-ish pearl bracelet fabric (which was just enough!)  and got to making stars.  Then I ditch quilted along each seam to hold everything in place while I did some big stitch quilting in perle cotton.  I think the quilting was my favorite part of this quilt, and I'm already planning on doing more, which means I'll need a bigger stash of perle cottons.  

I'm so pleased with how this one came out, and my partner loved it too, so that's a big win.  I need to buy another yard of the white pearls to make another for myself.  

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish it up Friday.  And this is one off my list for the 2015 Finish-Along!

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side

WIP Wednesday!

So this weekend my guild had a great sew-in to work on our QuiltCon 2016 Charity quilt.  We got soooo much done (and it looks really great) but I didn't unpack my machine until yesterday!  

I've been doing some hand sewing on my La Passacaglia (still on that first cog) but I've got it almost done and the next set of fabrics all ready to go.  I'm not entirely sold on my color selection, but I figure the more I add, the better it will look.

image.jpg

And I pulled my sewing machine out to start making these scrap bins from Sunday Morning Quilts by Amanda Jean Nyberg and Cheryl Arkinson.  (You can see Amanda's bins in her blog post here.)  They've been on my to do list for a long time, but I finally decided that the scrap situation couldn't wait any longer.  

I got through the blue bin really fast, and whipped up the orange one after the kids went to bed.  I think I'll need ten to sort out all my colors, so the kids are going to have to start eating lots of cereal so I can have the cardboard to line them.  

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Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!

Q2 Finish-Along Roundup!

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side

My first quarter of the Finish-Along over at On the Windy Side has come to an end, and I'm so pleased with how it went!  I didn't get to all my projects, but I did a lot of finishing and moved more closer to done.  

So I had three really solid finishes, and three that just need an hour's work.  So close!  

I'm so excited to get my Q3 list together.  I'm loving the google Keep function to keep these things organized because I can leave the window open on the computer to remind me, or open the app on my phone so I can check things off wherever I am.  

It's also fun having so many little steps that I can check, because it's motivating to have a step get crossed off.   When your goal is to make a quilt, it can be overwhelming, but when the day's goal is to just cut some pieces, it's not so bad.  And once you have a box mostly checked off, why not finish it up.  

I started color-coding my boxes (which I'll show you when I get my Q3 list in order), so that the things with due dates were red or orange, no due date was blue or green, and finished was gray.  I loved keeping the finished boxes as part of my list; they were my little pats on the back.

I'm still bogged down in a pile of WIPs, but it's great to move things along!  Thanks Adrienne for organizing this!

If you want to join in on the fun, head over to On the Windy Side to read all about the rules and prizes (yep, prizes!).  You have until the 14th to get your list linked up, then until September 30th to finish your projects.

WIP Wednesday!

It's really July up here in N.H.  My usual July daydream is of winter and snowmen and lying on a bed carved from ice, but this summer I'm dreaming of relocation to the Canadian tundra.  June was so mild, then the month changed and the humidity went to a million. 

Anyway, it's just been too hot to sew because I stick to the chair and can't bear to be within ten feet of a hot iron, so my projects have been few.  

image.jpg

I finished this top (save evening out that bottom row).  I saw a picture on Instagram and had to run with the idea. The original was from @_glass_half_full, and the one I saw was from @nightquilter.  

I haven't decided how to do the machine quilting, but I know I want to do some big stitch quilting along each row of colors.  

 

image.jpg

And I started my La Passacaglia quilt this week!  The book (Millefiori Quilts by Willyne Hammerstein) has be out of stock everywhere for quite some time, and I was using that as a sign that I didn't need to start another project, but I found a copy at the Vermont Quilt Festival!   

I copied, printed, and cut out my first set of papers and cut the fabrics, but when I got to those triangles I hit a major wall. I got those seven arrows fussy cut and basted before realizing that doing it fifty times would drive me insane.  I'm saving them for a smaller cog (that will hopefully only need seven triangles) and instead quickly cut some easy blender fabric.  

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!

Friday Finish: Cotton and Steel mini

It feels like ages ago that I signed up for the Cotton and Still mini swap on Instagram.  I was high off my Schnitzel and Boo swap and it's just so easy to fill out a form and put a ship date on a calendar that seems forever away.  

This swap turned out to be a bit of a tough one for me.  My partner was very quiet, like weeks between IG photos, and none about the swap.  She had life happen to her, and we all can understand, but it was still frustrating trying to figure out what she would like from non-quilty photos.  

In the end, I ended up pulling fabrics from her favorite C&S designer, Melody Miller, and settled on a Carolyn Friedlander Aerial Grove-esque design.  

The whole thing was done by hand.  Once each "squircle" was hand appliqued I wanted to finish the mini with hand quilting as well.  I thread basted the whole thing and grabbed some perle cotton in some C&S colors.  Because the appliques were very vertical, I wanted my quilting to add a horizontal line.  

All in all, it isn't perfect, but I love it so hopefully my partner will love it too.  It wasn't the most fun I've had in a swap (sorry to all my friends that I feel I complained to constantly) but I got a great mini out of it from someone local I plan on getting to know in the real world, so I think it worked out.  

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish it up Friday and this is one off my Finish-Along list.

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side

SMQG Lottery Block: Little Vines Tutorial

*** Elizabeth's tutorial for Little Vines is back up!  Go find it here! ***

 

July's lottery block for the Seacoast MQG is the Little Vines block by Elizabeth Hartman!  I was feeling very clever because we had a fun tutorial on bias tape applique at our June meeting and everyone would go home with a fun project to practice the skill!  Then I found out that the tutorial had been scrubbed from the internet.  :(

So, I've reverse engineered the block and written my own tutorial.  I don't want to step on toes, but desperate times and all...

 

At the meeting I gave out these templates.  If you didn't get any, don't worry, they're just a guide.  I'll show you after how to make the block without them.

 

Take the two pages with ends, use a ruler to draw a line across all the cut off lines.  This will be where you line up these pages with the first page.  Cut your paper a little past the drawn line.

 

Match the letters and tape your template pieces together.

 

Cut only along the curve on the larger piece, and cut all the way around the smaller piece.  

 

Lay your template down on a 12.5 inch square piece of fabric.  For this month, your background fabric should be white or "reads as white".  Trace your two arcs onto the fabric. 

(Savvy quilters may notice that I pulled out my trusty Frixion pen, which is silly, because we'll need to iron on the petals to fuse them which will erase that line.  Go for a water soluble pen or even just pencil.)

 

Here's where I explain how to not use the templates.  Duplicating the curve exactly isn't the most important part of this block, where the arcs end is.  So if you didn't get the templates, mark the edge of your fabric at 2.25 inches and 6.25 inches from the bottom left and top right corners, then freehand a curve.

 

Now on to the petals!  There were two petals on your template sheets, you can simply cut them out and trace, but it'll be much easier to trace all those petals if you fuse them to a couple pieces of freezer paper or trace it onto cardboard and use that to make your petals.  (If you didn't get the sheets, any petal shape will do.  The larger petal measures 2.5 inches from tip to tip, and the smaller is 1.75 inches tip to tip.)

Trace your petals onto the paper backing of your fusing material, I used Heat 'n' Bond Lite, fuse that to the wrong side of your scraps, then cut out your petal shapes.  You'll need 12 of the larger petals, and 10 of the smaller.

 

Lay out your petals along the curve.  You'll want to keep them just to the side of the curve, so touching the line, but not crossing it or touching the other petal.  Iron to fuse them.

 

To raw edge applique the petals, sew a zig zag stitch around the edges.  To keep all the thread ends hidden under the bias tape, start where the petal meets the line, sew along the first edge, pivot at the outer point, continue from the second edge to the third without cutting your thread, pivot at the second point, and sew down the fourth edge ending where you started.  

You'll want your zig zags to be mostly on the petal, with the outer stitch just barely going off the petal into your backing fabric.

 

When turning your work, always stop with your needle down on the outer edge of the petal, lift your presser foot, and adjust the fabric.  

 

For the vines, we'll need 1/4 inch bias tape in black or "reads as black".  Steph showed us all how to use the cool bias tape makers, and you can find 1/4 single fold bias tape in the store. 

Here's my big fat cheating part.  I could only find 1/2 single fold bias tape at the store, so I decided to just make it work.

 

Lay it out along your curve and cut it a little larger that you need.  

If you're cheating with 1/2 inch tape, place your bias tape flat side down on your ironing board, glue along one of the flaps with Elmer's or another sewing safe glue, fold in half, and iron.  I made sure that when I folded the tape, I was entirely covering the bottom edge with the top edge, so that when I sew it down, you'll only see the one fold.  

 

Lay down a line of glue on your drawn arc, finger press your bias tape along that line, then iron to dry the glue.  Sew along the two edges of the bias tape with black thread, as close to the edge as you can.  Trim off the ends of the bias tape.

 

When I was done, I was a little concerned with how lumpy my block was, but a quick starching flattens it out nicely.

 

Here's the finished block again!  Can't wait to see them all together at July's meeting!

WIP Wednesday! Updates from Insta-land...

There are so many little and big projects going on around here, so it's time for an Instagram update! 

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I'm almost done the binding on my Lizzy House mini quilt.  I love this mini, and might have to make one for myself.  

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Here's a little peek at the front.  I think I have to add hand-quilting to everything now!  It was one of the most enjoyable parts of making this mini.

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Yesterday I whipped up this Little Vines block.  I picked this block for our guild's block lottery, but the tutorial still isn't back online.  So I made this one so I could put up a little tutorial.  It's a fun block to make, and perfect for little scraps.

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And I've been toting around my other swap mini.  This one is for the Cotton and Steel swap.  Obviously, I've been brainwashed by Carolyn Friedlander, drunk the Kool-aid, and have bought piles of perle cotton and big stitch needles.  

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!

 


Friday Finish: Project Linus Quilt for Pat Bravo

A few months back Pat Bravo sent out a call on Instagram asking if anyone was interested in getting a bundle of her scraps to make a quilt for Project Linus.  I jumped on it!  I love sewing with scraps and Pat's piles looked so pretty!

When I got my bundle, I loved the soft girly feel, but those two dark red bits really threw me.  There was plenty of fabric to work with, but I really wanted to incorporate all the fabrics, so I needed a design that would spread out those reds.

So I went with the Scrappy Striped Flying Geese tutorial that Heather at House of a la Mode put out.  I changed them a little.  Instead of sewing strips of scraps to foundation paper, I just made slabs with my fabric and cut them to size.  I love how it changed the placement of the fabrics in the geese. 

For quilting, I knew I wanted to do straight lines in each of the geese, but since it's going to a child, I didn't want to quilt the whole thing to death.  Loose loopy quilting gave it just enough texture and strength for multiple trips through the washing machine, but it'll still be drapy enough for cuddling.

For the backing, I had this pink print flannel in my stash.  It was just enough to cover the back of this quilt and matched perfectly with the pinks on the front.

Linking up with Amanda Jean for Finish it up Friday!

 

 



Bloggers' Quilt Festival: Shameless Plug

Don't forget to hop over to Amy's Creative Side and vote for your favorite quilts!  Mine are in the Applique and Scrappy categories...  Should you feel the need to search them out and vote for them... just saying...  :)

AmysCreativeSide.com