Category Archives: Projects

Modern Batik Challenge

An Island Batik Adventure

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The ambassador challenge for June is “Modern Batik Challenge.” I decided to make a baby-sized quilt and went to one of my Island Batik bins to choose fabrics.  I love all the blues and pulled out all the small pieces I had left from previous projects and a few of the bigger ones too.  I chose an white with a very light blue print neutral for the background.

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From a very light weight tissue-like paper, I cut long strips 2 inches wide.  I used those as a base to randomly paper piece all the blue fabrics.  Once it was all sewn, I trimmed each of the four strips. I placed two across the top and two lengthwise on the left-hand side which created much negative space.  After all was cut to size and pieced, I machine quilted straight lines in the white spaces and used a loop-de-loop in the blue strips. Aurifil thread was used in this project.

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This quilt will go into my stash of quilts and when there is a baby I want a quilt for, I will probably put his or her name in the large open space.  I love when baby quilts are personalized that way.

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All the Island Batik Ambassadors have been busy and I encourage you to give them a visit to see what they have created with these beautiful fabrics that Island Batik has provided us with.

 

 

 

 

Linking up with:

Linky Tuesday,   (too) Cute Tuesday,       WIPs on Wednesdays

Needle and Thread Thursday

 

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Quilt Cabinet and Topper

It made me sad to have a pile of my quilts hidden away in a closet. I do have three quilt ladders in the house and quilts on beds and sofas. It was clear I needed a cabinet to house my quilts that made them somewhat visible. I so lucked out at a local antique mall. Technically it is a curio cabinet, but I just removed the glass shelf, neatly folded the quilts and placed them in two stacks – a total of seventeen! And what a bonus to have all that closet space back!

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Now the top of the cabinet needed something. I thought about doing a small table runner, but I have vowed to not begin any new quilts for a while. Ah Ha! A rope table topper with fabric scraps. It was done in just a few hours and is now on the cabinet top. Another score!

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All this made me curious as to just how many quilts I have in the house. Without going around actually counting, I came up with the number 41.  Later I did count quilts, wall hangings and table runners in my home and the grand total is 64.  I know that’s far less than many quilters have in their home, but wow – really – it’s still a lot! And when I think of all the quilts I’ve given as gifts and to charity! Some day soon I’ll go through my blog and see if I can come up with a count – or maybe I better not – it could scare me away!

May was a very productive month – maybe because it rained, and rained, and rained…

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Mini Square in a Square

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At my Spring retreat I began this mini quilt using gray print triangles I had in my stash together with a pack of 2 1/2″ squares I found when cleaning out a bin of precuts.  I attended another retreat where I finished all the blocks and then pieced the triangles for the border.

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I didn’t put it completely together until I got home because I needed to do a bit of math and design. I chose to do the little cornerstone squares in a square – and yes, they were a pain! I cut a template for a quilting motif, traced it around in the center of each block and quilted. I really do like the outcome. I will probably use it as a table topper, switching it out with others at some time. So fun to complete a small project!

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WIPS on Wednesday   Let’s Bee Social   My Quilt Infatuation   Moving It Forward

 

Big Shabby Chic Finish

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Much of my stash has bright colors and bold prints. In contrast, I do love white on whites and off-white on off-whites.  A couple of years ago I gathered whatever of those two I had in my stash and bought many, many fat quarters. Apparently it was meant to be because I happened upon a warehouse type fabric shop that had a ton of these fabrics for just $1.25 a fat quarter – score!

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I wanted the fabrics to speak and not an elaborate design.  I cut a ton of triangles (starched to avoid stretching) and proceeded to sew many, many half-square triangles which I then put together as hourglass blocks, alternating the white on whites with the off-whites on off-whites. I layered a backing square, same size muslin square and the pieced square on top and quilted a simple motif on each. Yes, this seemed to take forever, but every so often I would do about 8 or 10 a day. I then pieced them wrong sides together with a half inch seam, then clipped the seams.

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It is definitely the Shabby Chic look I was going for and I am using it on one of our guest room beds. I also love the way my scrappy bedskirt contrasts on the bottom of the bed. The best part – I love it! Or maybe, the best part is that it’s done!

Linking up with: WIPS on Wednesday   Let’s Bee Social Needle and Thread Thursday   Moving It Forward

 

 

Surprises & A Great Retreat!

Last week was the Spring Quilt & Sew-In Retreat and it was a blast! There was so much sewing going on, but that is truly the least of it. The sharing, assistance, laughing and teaching moments were all such treasures. The generous spirit of all who attended was just amazingly wonderful. How lucky am I to bring these quilters back together each year!

And there were surprises! Beverly made these darling heart appliqued bags for everyone and a few extras for the wonderful employees of the inn where we stay. She also made  cute little butterflies (mine, unfortunately, is camera shy). She is the resident crochet queen! In addition, she blessed me with the crocheted doilies (if I ever made one of these, I don’t think I’d be giving them away!) and a sewing machine cover with pockets for tools.

Sandra made everyone this cute finger pin cushion (on the right).  It is going to be a real bonus for me when I am hand appliqueing.

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In their goody bags, each attendee received a pin cushion with a Velcro backing – perfect to place on your sewing machine or table or wherever you might find it handy (above left). Several were put to use shortly after receiving them! Both were made with bottle caps as the base.

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Something very special that happens at retreat is that there is a bucket of block “kits” for each to sew if they choose. The blocks are then put together for Hospice quilts. Everyone sewed one – some more than one! These batiks are going to make a beautiful quilt. The very masculine blocks were put together and the quilt top is already finished – Yeah!

AND there was a last minute sponsor – Woo Hoo! Northcott Fabrics so very generously sent these goodies. Sponsor generosity helps to make the retreats so very special.

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In the Fall we retreat again in Blowing Rock. Lucky me – I of course get to be there!

400 Feet of Sewing!

We recently had new flooring installed in our home and my side entry needed a small carpet. Making rope bowls had been so much fun – why not sew a rug? I started off with two 100 foot skeins of cotton rope. In the washing machine they went with brown dye. Doing a flat surface is a lot of fun and I loved the look of the variegated brown thread I used. When the rope had almost run out, it was clear that the rug wasn’t big enough. Two more skeins dyed and back to the sewing machine!

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The brown variegated thread rant out so I went on to a green/blue variegated thread! Yup – that ran out too! I switched to a brown that matched the rope. The second dye batch did not match the first, so I switched thread again, this time to a dark brown. I lost count of how many bobbins I filled – I’m pretty sure it was about 8! I emptied some spools of thread too!

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The rug is backed with a non-slip material for safety’s sake. The rug is perfect in it’s new home and I surely get a kick out of the fact that I made it!

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This rug was April’s first finish – let’s see what I accomplished in March:

March WIPs

Linking up with: Jo’s Country Junction, Sew, Stitch, Snap, Linky Tuesday, Needle & Thread Thursday, Midweek Makers

Old Made New

An Island Batik Adventure – Vintage Quilts Inspiring New Creations

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I scoured my books, patterns and the internet for hours trying to come up with the project I really wanted to do for this challenge. Then it came to me – an apron! How vintage is that?! I did find a pattern for a half apron that was very vintage looking, (Sewing Geek Harlequin Apron pattern) but with these amazing Island Batiks I knew it would immediately be new and exciting.

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I did a little altering to the pattern: one row less from top to bottom and one more row added to the side. I also gathered it at the waist a bit so it wasn’t just straight across. It is fully lined, and I straight line quilted the whole apron.  A pocket was needed, so I sketched several: rounded, rounded gathered, rectangle. Mimicking the pattern of the apron was definitely the answer. Once the pocket was on I was absolutely giddy about this project. Don’t you just love when that happens – not just being okay or pleased with your creations, but super happy?

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My new vintage apron now hangs in my kitchen, adding a burst of color and soon to be worn when having friends or family over for dinner.

 

 

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