Friday, April 21, 2017

Going Coastal

Struggling to write this post today I realized I enjoy talking about the process of making quilts a lot more than the finished product.  Don't get me wrong, I LOVE this quilt - there's just not much else to say at this point.

Quick recap: I pieced the top and back of this one last summer.  Since then it's been hibernating in the UFO pile waiting for summer to return to do duty as a beach blanket.  I finally rescued this to quilt at Laurena's before she closed.  The Surf's Up panto is the perfect wave to meld everything together and the orange thread blends nicely on the front but gives lots of texture to the back.  

I don't tend to use a lot of orange but this Tangerine binding seemed perfect!

I wish it was really warm enough to head to the beach for a photoshoot but I took a practice run on the volleyball court at Kimball Farm.

Can't you just feel the sand in your toes...

Dreaming of summer with this week's Finish it Up Friday by Crazy Mom Quilts.

Quilt Stats:
Finished quilt is 80" x 72"
Pattern: Inspired by Cluck Cluck Sew's Squares and Strips quilt
Fabrics: Going Coastal by Emily Herrick.  Michael Miller Cotton Couture: Love, Tangerine, Creamcicle.  Free Spirit Designer Solids: True Red, Miracle, Burst, Sap, Leaf.  Kona Cotton: Storm.
Batting: Quilter's Dream Orient.
Thread: Superior Threads King Tut in Orange Zest (1014).
Quilting: Surf's Up pantograph by Dave Hudson.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

W.i.P. Wednesday: No Rest For the Weary

It was love at first sight when Heather Ross released Sleeping Porch.  Those pinks and greens...  how could I resist but once I touched this all cotton lawn collection I was head over heels.  I couldn't wait to jump in and make something with this but as usual my life had other ideas...

I knew I wanted to only use cotton lawn for my first quilt with this collection but I was also unsure how piecing would go with the lighter weight fabric so I opted for a pattern with simple pieces.  A triangle quilt has been on my bucket list for a while so this seemed like the perfect opportunity.  I cut all these triangles thinking this would be a perfect retreat project but never got to it.

There are tons of great tutorials out there for making a triangle quilt but I found these tips from the Triangle Quilt Along at Sassy Quilter to be the best.  I used the Triangle Squared ruler which solves the problem of offsetting your points.  The cotton lawn isn't as sticky as quilting cotton so it was slow going pinning every seam when sewing but still good for chain piecing.

Cotton + Steel put out some great tips for quilting with lawn.  I didn't prewash as they suggest but I did switch to a 70/10 sharp needle and used 50 wt Aurifil for the piecing.  I don't find Best Press to be as effective on the lawn.  Next time I may try regular old spray starch.

Our vacation week schedule is pretty packed but I've been sneaking in some after dinner sewing breaks and chipping away at this one.

And those evenings add up...  a finished flimsy:-)  I'm feeling the loss of my LQS again, of course I don't have any batting on hand.  I decided to go all out with Quilter's Dream Wool from Fat Quarter Shop (with a few treats thrown in for free shipping).  Hopefully their quick delivery will get it here before I lose my momentum...  Dreaming of snuggling up with this one should keep me going!  How do you find time to quilt when life gets crazy?

Friday, April 14, 2017

Here Comes the Sun

Spring is slowly starting to arrive to New England but this quilt makes its own sunshine.

I started this one on retreat with the BostonMQG back in 2015.  The pattern is Strawberry Fields from one of my all-time favorite books, Material Obsession by Sarah Fielke and Kathy Doughty.  It's easy to construct the blocks but there were errors in the version of the book I have.  Here is the errata with the correct cutting sizes.  I'm so glad I made a test block before cutting all my pieces!!!

This is an excellent pattern for layer cakes.  I love the way it showcases larger scale prints but also is a great way to use up scraps.  For this one I used a Sunkissed layer cake mixed with low volume scraps from my stash.

Of course by the time I finished the top Sunkissed was long out of print but I scored this fabulous Anna Griffin print at Marden's.  I love these two together!!!  This had been languishing in the UFO pile but when I heard Laurena's was closing this was at the top of my list.  I used Elizabeth Hartman's glue stick technique for pattern matching the back...  look how perfect that seam is.

And of course I had to go with a striped binding to pull it all together.

Soaking up some Sun with this week's Finish it Up Friday by Crazy Mom Quilts.

Quilt Stats:
Finished quilt is 60" x 74"
Pattern: Strawberry Fields from Material Obsession by Sarah Fielke.
Fabrics: Sunkissed by Sweetwater for Moda.  Assorted low volume prints from stash.  Backing from the Carmen Collection by Anna Griffin.
Batting: Quilter's Dream Orient.
Thread: Superior Threads King Tut in Sunstone (982).
Quilting: Daisies Galore pantograph by Irene Steele.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Unplanned!

It's time once again for the BostonMQG's annual quilt show.  This year's mini quilt challenge is Improv.  If you know me IRL you'll know I'm more of a "planned to the point of compulsion" kind of quilter so this truly is a challenge.

While we were on retreat the amazingly generous Alexis gave me her Kaffe Fassett charm pack.  With no plan in mind I pulled a Denyse Schmidt and randomly pulled pairs to make HSTs and then some again to make QSTs.

From there they went back in to the bag and I pulled them out and sewed them together into rows.  No thinking about it or moving things around, just taking them as the were.

I tried to channel the same mindlessness for the quilting and just let the blocks lead me where they wanted to be quilted.

I love all the texture!!!

alidiza: Unplanned!
It was down to the wire but I managed to get the binding on and despite a freakish April 1st snow storm delivered to Fabric Place Basement.  The show opens tomorrow and will be open weekends thru May 8th.  If you're in the area you should definitely check it out!

Winging it with this week's Finish it Up Friday by Crazy Mom Quilts.

Quilt Stats:
Finished quilt is 18" x 18"
Fabrics: Kaffe Fassett Woven Cottons charm pack
Batting: Quilter's Dream Orient.
Thread: 50 wt. Aurifil in  Arctic Sky (2612).

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

W.i.P. Wednesday: Sewing into Spring

With the delivery date for this year's BostonMQG quilt show rapidly approaching I was highly motivated to finish things up this week...

With the quilting done I really wanted to show my Snake Trail quilt.  I'm so happy with how this turned out so getting the binding on and tacked was my top priority.

Once that was out of the way I moved on to finishing up my Improv challenge mini quilt.  I really need to remember to keep it simple when I'm on a deadline but with the freak April 1st snow storm I wasn't doing anything else;-)

With my quilts delivered I could get back to the rest of those quilts that need bindings tacked.  There's nothing like a gymnastics meet (with 2 hour car ride) to get things done. I'm *this* close to being finished with this one.  How's your Spring shaping up?

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

W.i.P. Wednesday: On the Go

Taking stock of my UFO stack always inspires me schedule some longarm sessions to finish things up.  This year has started off busy but when I heard Laurena's Longarm was closing I jumped to schedule some sessions before it was too late...  since then it's been quilt, quilt, quilt:-)

video
I started with my Sloops quilt.  I usually prefer hand guided pantographs or FMQ but in the interest of time I went with a computer driven pattern for this one.  I love how perfectly the waves flow across the sailboats!!!

While I was babysitting the machine doing Sloops I was also able to load up my Blue Plate Special on another machine.  I plan to use the same technique I used for my Ghastly Games to quilt the Dresden Plates on to the quilt sandwich but it's so big it was definitely easier to baste it on the longarm.

The next day I was back again adding this wavy Surf's Up pantograph to my Going Coastal quilt.

Then in a true fit of insanity I used my last session to not only baste my City Sampler quilt to custom quilt at home....

I also quilted Here Comes the Sun with this adorable Daisies Galore panto.  The good news is that Laurena has a buyer so it seems like I'll be happily longarming again.

And then I just couldn't resist quilting the Snake Trail quilt top I finished last week on retreat with the BostonMQG.  I'm so in love with this one now that it's almost done.

 Since I was on a roll I went ahead and got all my bindings on...  I predict some binge watching in my future.  Netflix and Quilts;-)  Any suggestions for a good movie marathon?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

W.i.P. Wednesday: Retreat Recap

This weekend was the BostonMQG's annual retreat in Kennebunk Maine.  It just doesn't get any better than a weekend away with this awesomely talented group of women.  I always come home brimming with ideas and wishing I could spend a whole week.

My main goal was to finish piecing my Snake Trail top.  I got off to a slow start but eventually worked out my issues and got my rows to go together.

 I played around with layouts and diverged a bit from Denyse Schmidt's original design.  By dinner time I had a flimsy together.

And since it's more fun to baste with friends I stayed up late to get this one ready to quilt.  No surprise I didn't actually pack enough thread for quilting but it's ready to go.

With that accomplished I wasn't really up for tackling my next project but Alexis generously shared a Kaffe Fassett shot cotton charm pack.  With no real plan in mind I just started making half and quarter square triangles.  I love the way these fabrics work together...  we'll see what this becomes,  hopefully a mini for our upcoming Quilt Show.

Now it's back to reality but I've got a quiet week so I'm hoping to keep my quilt mojo going!