Category Archives: Sampler

Winner! & September Wrap-Up

Grand Canyon 2017

September has not been a heavy sewing month for me. We went out west for a nine day vacation (Vegas, Grand Canyon, Sedona, Flagstaff, Lake Powell, Zion Park and Boulder City.) Much time was spent planning and then packing. We had a GREAT time but, of course, came back exhausted. I am just getting back into the studio and trying to get a rhythm going again.

I have done several blocks for a batik quilt using a block of the month from Craftsy I downloaded a couple of years ago. The fabric is the batik version of “Bobbins and Bits” – see the sewing motifs? I love how bright it is. I’ve never put together such large blocks! This won’t be done for a while, but I am enjoying it.

B&B Star (Medium)B&B Pinwheel (Medium)B&B stick pnwhl (Medium)

A good bit of my time has been spent prepping for the two fall retreats – Quilt & Sew-in Fall I and Fall II. One of our guest bedrooms is filling up with all the goodies and I’m really looking forward to once again being with all the wonderful ladies who will be attending and I get to meet a few new ones this year too!

And now for the winner of my Island Batik Ambassador Blog Hop – Linda W. from the Shenandoah Valley!  She wins a pack of 60-five inch squares of the Solstice collection. Congrats and enjoy!I have contacted you by email for your address. Start planning your project for these batik beauties!

Island Batik blog giveaway

 

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Workin’ It Wednesday – Pups & Kittens

Pups, Kittens (Medium)

At a quilt camp in the Spring of 2016, in the NC Mountains, Sue Bouchard of Quilt In A Day gave a workshop on her pattern “Tribe.” The quilt consisted of many blocks using various techniques.  One technique I learned was how to make flying geese in a new way using the mini geese rulers.  Another focus of the design of the blocks was fussy cutting. I had some  adorable fabric with pups and kittens in my stash and decided to go with it.

If you look closely you can see the little fish bones in the left kitty fabric and the little fish in the fabric in the block on the right – such fun!

The little paw prints and bones are just great on the doggie fabrics. I love the bright orange against the royal blue.

Pups Kittens setting (Medium)

I have finished twenty blocks and decided it was time to put them together! I didn’t want to do just plain sashing, so after looking at many quilt settings on (you probably guessed it!) Pinterest, I sketched my plan with dimensions and gave it to hubby to put it on EQ.  I can never minimize how delighted I am that he learned this program and does this for me! Sometimes it’s such a treat to be spoiled and it’s a great way for him to share in my obsession passion. The plan is to finish assembling this quilt top on Friday at a sew-in. Would love to keep with this plan!!

 

 

 

3 Day Workshop Prep

In a few weeks I will be attending a 3 day workshop. I don’t usually do workshops, but will I not only learn some new techniques, but it will be a get-away and I am sure to meet some wonderful quilters.

paws print light (Large)

Paws for Comfort

There is some prep so I thought I’d better do it now, because when I get back from the Quilt & Sew-In next week, I might not have the energy to tackle it! After searching through my stash I chose a cute dog and cat fabric that I used when I designed the Paws for Comfort quilt. Cutting instructions for 26 blocks were sent and the cutting is to be done prior to the workshop. It was suggested we label zip lock bags and have one for each block. I do at times use zip lock bags, but I did not want to deal with 26 of them, so…

Notebook I

A notebook with plastic protectors! I have the picture and cutting instructions for each block in the front of a protector and the fabric for that block behind the pattern. I can just flip through the book – easy and organized! For safety, I put a large hair elastic around the notebook – should it be turned upside down, the pieces won’t all come tumbling out of the notebook.

Notebook II

I’ll also have some blank sheets so I can take notes as the old memory is not so dependable any more. I’ve completed all the cutting  and it feels grand to be prepared weeks ahead of time! I’m really excited to be doing so much fun sewing in the next few weeks!

Kaffe Table Topper

IMG_0790 (Large)

As if I didn’t have enough projects in the process, I started a new one about a week ago. I was going through my bin of Kaffe Fasset fabric and decided I wanted a small table topper for my dining room.  I began sketching 6″ finished blocks and away I went. On the eighth block I had more than a screw loose – I lost it completely! I had to take it out six times! No, it wasn’t difficult – as you can see, none of them are. My quilting brain had just gone to sleep (comatose more like it)!

IMG_0792 (Large)IMG_0794 (Large)

IMG_0793 (Large)

The spiral quilting really shows up well on the back.

 

As soon as I had the blocks together I cut my backing and batting and sandwiched it so it was ready to quilt the next morning. I was going to do a sort of loop-d-loop free motion and then realized it would be the perfect size for a spiral. I have wanted to try one for quite some time now. It was really easy! The very beginning is a little tough, and you can see in the pics the center is a little wonky, but once I got going, it was easy. I just followed around with my walking foot. At one point, though, I had to stop for a minute – it was making me dizzy! I did the loop-d-loops on the borders, got the binding on, and had the table topper on my dining room table that afternoon. Instant gratification! Now I am a bit more motivated to get to a project or two that has been hanging around for a long, long time.

IMG_0795 (Large)IMG_0791 (Large)

The Last Blocks

I was at a three night sew-in last week and there was no wi-fi. Time to catch up! L’s senior project is seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.  The borders are on, backing and label done. She is now off to a long arm quilter who is going to show her how it’s done. We will then have one more session to do the binding. Her project is already over 30 hours! Our goal is to have it all done before Thanksgiving as she has a special weekend trip she’d like to go to and enjoy.

Flying Geese 2 (Large)

Northern Star (Large)

Here are the last  blocks of the quilt that I did in my fabrics. My quilt will have a total of nine blocks and Louisa’s a total of twelve. This was not an easy beginner project.

I have all my blocks on the design wall and would like to do a non-traditional setting. Others might go to their computer to lay it out, or grab a pad of graph paper. I started to sketch it and lasted about three minutes. I will wait for a vision. What that really means is that it won’t get done for a while! I am leaving it all on the design wall until the inspiration hits.  The good news – I have two design walls!

Mentors quilt

Mentor Blocks Two and Three

 

Shoofly Block

Shoofly Block

Mentoring L’s senior project continues. Block two, the “Monkey Wrench” or “Church Dash” and block three, “Shoofly” have been completed. I am using two prints from Free Spirit’s Wildwood collection and a third to fussy cut the flowers in the center squares. For the background fabric I am using one of the designer essentials, Flora which is light pale golden yellow on yellow flower design.

Churn Dash Block

Churn Dash Block

It really is exciting to see L’s six blocks on one of my design walls with my blocks on the design wall beside hers. Even better is seeing her getting more comfortable with rotary cutting and sewing. She’s even at the point where I don’t need to give her step by step instructions – she is figuring it out on her own. Next week she should have her next set of blocks done. We are on a tight schedule, so we really need to be plugging along.

As for my own sewing, I am piddling some, but the nicer weather has brought me out to the yard for some much needed maintenance. Unfortunately, our mighty oaks have been overly prolific with acorns this year. Every other year is usually heavy, but this is definitely a banner year!

Acorns (Large)From just one section of our yard, about a twelve by twelve foot area, we have filled five contractor size wheelbarrows with acorns! The pic on the left shows how the acorns are carpeting sections of our yard. Our snow shovel has come in handy for this task! The other major drawback to the constant raining of acorns is that it often wakes us at night. Hitting the roof makes quite a thump, but hitting the gutters sounds like we are under siege! Surely after today’s rain they will all be down – I can only hope.

Stashbuster – Sampler Quilt & Mentoring

Crossroads (Large)Such an honor – a very sweet, intelligent and beautiful girl asked me to be her mentor for her senior Capstone project. Students pick a topic, write a research paper, and then complete a project. It is their choice, however it does need to meet with a school official’s approval.  My student, “L,” chose quilting! Her topic is very interesting – quilting as a communication tool during the Underground Railroad.  She did her research, chose her blocks and drew up a design (yes, literally with pencil and paper!) My hubby the EQ superman transferred it to the EQ program. L chose her color palette and off to MaryJo’s Fabrics we went. This was not an easy task for her. She had something very specific in mind and it did not all seem to exist! Two hours and 18 bolts of fabric later, she found her four fabrics.

I will not be showing any pics of her fabric or blocks until after she has presented her project at the end of the year. I am, however, doing each of the five blocks ahead of her and will post those as we go. She will be doing a total of 12 blocks, sashings and two borders – all to be completed by the end of November. Yikes! No pressure here!

I was going to just build practice blocks using muslin but DUH! If I’m going to do the work, I might as well use a pretty fabric collection in my stash and get a quilt out of the project too! The first block is Crossroads and is the easiest of the five blocks she has chosen. Below is the EQ generated block drawing. Crossroads Block