Weblog and Idea Spot for Quilters

10 March 2015

Two Quickie Tops

Retreat!  I spent the weekend at a quilting retreat with some of my best quilting buddies this past weekend.  I try to bring fairly easy things to work on with all pieces pre-cut because I can never focus on quilting well enough when people are telling interesting stories or passing a plate of cookies around.  Both of these were made primarily from a batch of fairly plain green fabrics I recently received.

 Adding a little of the bright wonky stripe fabric gave this first quilt a little pizazz and made it fun to piece.

Its hard to tell unless you zoom in on the second quilt, but I added an eco-friendly print for borders and a bit of bright yellow to make this green quilt a "green" quilt.

And this quilt is the one you see wadded up on the table in the picture above.  My friend Cheryl finished this one up during the weekend.  It is festive and christmassy and just adorable.

These retreats are so very worth going to.  Good friends are great therapy and the quilting is always fun too.

03 March 2015

It's For Fun

...so I can scribble quilt it if I wanna.  A good photo of this top is in this post from a few months back.

Maybe the stitching will show up more on the plain muslin back.  I love having lots of different textures in a quilt, and the open area of the ring below right next to the garden row quiting inside it makes a lovely feel when you run your fingers over it.
Heh.  Teething rings.  No, I am not expecting.  Absolutely not.  But my dogs do have chew toys that remind me of baby teethers of old.
The only problem with this much detail in a quilt is that it takes some while to finish.  Between this and my hunter's star piecing, I feel stalled.  The upcoming winter weather will probably give me plenty of opportunity to get at least one of these projects wrapped up.  I hope.

27 February 2015

Goodbye Mr. Spock

Sad news today.  Leonard Nimoy has died.  He was one of my TV heroes from way back.

14 February 2015

Icy Hunters Star

It's all cut out and piecing has started!  I had a little trouble at first getting the unusual angles to line up correctly after sewing.  Turns out the seam allowance wants to be a thread's width narrower than I was making them.  Now that it's straightened out though piecing is moving along well.  But I've gotten ahead of myself.

Beth and I decided to build one of these each when we first saw a red and white Hunter's Star on the net a couple of years back.  I don't remember now what colors she chose, but I wanted something that looked very wintery, so I collected lots of low volume blue and grey prints and a few different whites to work with.

I made a bunch of 3 7/8" strips (to minimize waste) and ran them through my Go! cutter with the hunter's star die.  Boy was this ever easier than trying to keep everything lined up nicely for a 30° cut!  EDIT:  how embarassing!  Of course I meant 45°!

So now it's just a matter of several iterations of chain piecing, which will take a while.

I did make a test block - the real blocks will be alternating blue and grey four patches instead of four of one color/print, but I like the way it looks.

12 February 2015

Dizzying Disappearing Rhapsody

Yes!  The top is finished!  Still trying to decide about a border, but otherwise, it's done.  There was a LOT of matchy-matchy involved in this top, but it's good exercise.  I'm happy with the fabrics and the layout.

Next up is the hunter's star I've been hoping to do for probably two years.  Still cutting out parts for it, but piecing will start this week.

17 January 2015

Disappearing Rhapsody

The post titles get lamer as time goes on, I know.

A fat quarter pack of rhapsody of reds from Connecting Threads has been sitting on my sewing table for about a year now waiting for just the right project to come along.

My buddy Beth pointed me to this video from the Missouri Star Quilt Company.  Yah.  Perfect!

I'm going to lay out the blocks differently though.  Here's what her quilt looks like (the layout not the fabrics):

and this is what I'll be doing:
Their layout is pretty, but being a long arm quilter, I really like the little buttons of color surrounded by all that white space.

As usual I added in fabrics from my stash that play well with the CT fq pack.  Here's my first few blocks finished and layed out in the configuration I like.  The one that looks completely white is made with a very low volume red print.  It might not make the final cut:

This technique is fun, but it does take a little while, so the quilt won't be finished this week.

20 December 2014

Curtain to Quilt

I received (as part of a very large donation of fabrics) the blue and green panels in this quilt as valances.  They'd probably been hanging in someone's kitchen for a while and when styles or tastes changed the curtains came down.

After picking apart the valances and pressing the fabrics, the stripe was added from my stash to make a very simple quilt.  The backing fabric, also from my stash was a serendipitous match.

The binding was finished last night and this morning I told my OFG that this quilt needed a home.  Then I remembered THIS post from a blog I read regularly.  Now the quilt is on it's way to a college dorm in the frozen north!

16 December 2014

Argyle in Tan and Grey

Right off the bat, let me say I have two really excellent helpers.  Each of them is willing to step on, chew, nap or shed on any quilt I make.  Any time, any where.  First up, Fiona Ferocious FooDog Faust.  She's an eight month old golden retriever and is never ever an instigator.  No sirreebob.  (Toilet paper roll destruction is her specialty)
Of course, I've already introduced our anatolian shepherd, Chrysler the Decaffeinated Sweet Beast Phillips.  We call him decaf for short.  This guy can shed an entire toy poodle in under five minutes.  It's amazing.

Oh right.  The quilt.  This quilt didn't turn out like I'd planned.  I wanted a fairly subtle argyle pattern in tan and grey and ended up with a high contrast very bold look.  It's still a useable quilt, but for next time maybe I'll audition the fabrics a bit more carefully.  This quilt was made from a combination of fabrics from Connecting Threads' Neutral Love line and my own stash.

I used two shades of gold thread and one metallic gold for the quilting.  If I'd had unlimited time for this one I might have couched a heavy thread or even maybe a yarn for the main diagonals.

The metallic really gives the quilt a little sparkle in person, but my photography doesn't do it justice.

The setting triangles and binding both made me happy, giving just the subtle blend I'd been looking for in the entire quilt.

I went to the trouble of buying a piece of wide quilt backing for this quilt and when it came time to make the magic happen it turned out I'd purchased about four inches too little.  Words were spoken.  I did have a couple of left over blocks though, so I threw together all the scraps and made a stripe in the back which is a fair addition to the quilt.  Serendipity.


This one is a BIG queen.  Plenty of overhang, plenty of pillow tuck.  I find that making a quilt for the next size up bed makes the night time tug of war a little easier.

14 December 2014

In the Spirit of the Season

Both inspired by quilts in Jelly Roll Quilts by Pam & Nicky Lintott, these quilts were comissioned by a customer for donation to a local women's shelter.  The brown quilt is called Blue Lagoon and is made in blues in the book, and the blue quilt is called Pandora's box and is worked in dark and light neutrals in the book.

The Lintott's book is full of easy, attractive, quickly made patterns, so I go straight to it when I need to get a quilt out fast.

18 November 2014

The Respect It Deserves

My friend who is a quilter also makes gorgeous ceramics.  I regularly snatch works of art out of her trash can.  For my birthday she made me this amazing bowl.  It's deeper than the average bowl and the sides are a bit steeper, making it both fabulous to hold and far more useful when loading stuff on top of a scoop of ice cream.

Here it is being treated with the respect it deserves:

29 October 2014

24 October 2014

Wrong Way With Bubbles


Wrong Way With Bubbles is my own design.  I had a jelly roll and a charm pack and had no idea what to do with them.  Combine that with some spare time and that spells trouble.  Which rhymes with bubble.  And that is starting to sound like a really old movie.

It's hard to claim a design is your own anymore.  I'm sure I've seen chevrons on other people's quilts, and the super simplified half log cabin blocks certainly aren't new, but I think they've been combined in a fairly unique way here, so meh.  It's original.

I love quilting bubbles.  They are super fun and pretty easy but you do have to pay attention to the work so the proportions look right.  A couple of these bubbles look a little flat.

I've had the absolutely crazy backing/binding fabric in my stash forever.  It was one of those too cheap to pass up kind of deals, but it sure gathered some dust.  When I started looking at the stash for a back fabric this one JUMPED out at me.  The colors are spot on.

Technical specs:  90" x 64".  All cotton fabrics, warm and natural batting.  Unknown manufacturer white cone thread tex 40, A&E colors in tex 40.

Thanks for stopping by to see my very odd quilt.  I hope you enjoy the rest of the Bloggers Quilt Festival!

Bloggers Quilt Festival (Autumn 2014)


Welcome to my stop on the autumn 2014 Blogger's Quilt Festival.  Almost two years in the making for this quilt and I wasn't sure it would be finished in time for this festival either!  Modern Autumn started with a picture of a fabric collection on the Keepsake Quilting website two autumns passed.

The colors were so enchanting I pulled the closest things I could find in my own stash and started thinking about leaves changing colors.  Not long after the block pattern came to my attention on another website.

After the body of the quilt top was assembled it hung forlorn and abandoned in the studio for a year while I slooooooowly got the 336  1-1/2" HSTs squared up for the border.

The wind and leaves were super fun to quilt, but now I wish I'd used a little copper thread on the leaves.  Just a few days on Terpsichore, a bit of hand sewing for the binding, and voila!  

Super cozy and ready for use on a cool autumn morning with a cup of coffee and a good book.

Technical specs:  90" x 90" all cotton fabrics, warm and natural batting, A&E threads.

Thanks for stopping by, I read and respond to every comment.  Enjoy the rest of the Festival!

09 October 2014

Marcy's Leftovers Complete

This quilt was made from a bunch of muslin, a couple of pieces of solids from my stash, and a friend's leftovers.  The poor thing was put on Terpsichore and taken back off again half a dozen times before I finished all the quilting.

 I got a little whimsical in the borders.

My freehand circles are about as round as my homemade pancakes which is to say not especially round.  It was fun to quilt and I love the pattern the quilting makes on the back,

and the fabrics are gorgeous and I would never have made the quilt if it wasn't for the freebie 2" x 4" scraps Marcy handed me.

Binding the quilt in the neutral fabric may have been a mistake, but I've gotten bored with the eye popping edges I see everywhere (including on my own quilts) and am ready to try other things for a while.

Blue and green aren't my colors, so this quilt is looking for a home.

26 September 2014

Summer Retreat Quilt

A few times a year I meet some quilting friends at Le Retreat House in Gainesville and we all spend the weekend chatting and sewing.  It is relaxing and cathartic.  This summer I put together this top from two moda charm packs but I still haven't quilted it...

and my friend miz D made this one for her sister.  It actually took her several different retreats to piece it, but she got the binding on it this summer.

I didn't get pictures of any of the other quilts in progress, but we have another retreat coming up soon.

I also got the binding on this quilt which was very simple to make (from the pattern "Square Deal" found in Amy Smart's Fabulously Fast Quilts) and easy to quilt and it struck me funny to add a little text in the middle (visible on the back more than the front).