Tag Archives: stash

Scrapbuster Sunday – Mini Thank You Quilts

Recently I attended a funeral held out of town for a dear aunt of mine. The few days I spent there were really a marvelous celebration of her life. Her children, my six cousins, were amazingly hospitable and I wanted to thank them in a special way. Of course, I always go to quilting. I decided to do mini quilts from my scraps. Once the blocks were sewn, I mounted them on a solid piece of duck cloth (it is tightly woven). I both glued the block onto the piece and then did a little bit of straight stitching around the outside edge and in the middle of each block. The mounted blocks were then glued onto a 5″ x 7″ plain while card. Making freestyle blocks with piles of scraps was such a rush of creativity!

Sadly, I think thank you cards seem to be coming extinct, having been replaced by a message on Facebook and often, no thank you at all. This was my way to express just how grateful I was to my cousins for the hospitality and love they poured out during their time of grieving.

greeting-card-1-large

These mini blocks were a lot of fun to do and I’m sure I will be creating several more in my future! Bonus – a handful of scraps gone!!

Strips Make Quick Work!

This is my second quilt with this fabric line. The first was gifted and my guess this one will go into my quilt collection or may very well be a gift to someone in the future.

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I started out by cutting 2 1/2″ strips using my Big Kick Pro. I used to be such a snob about these cutting machines, but now eat my words. Not only do they make quick work of what can sometimes be a tedious chore, they make totally accurate cuts! No more slipping an eighth of an inch and saying not so nice words in frustration. I used a quilt pattern I found on You Tube with Three Dudes. This was quick, fun and didn’t require a whole lot of thinking. I love to sprinkle these kinds of quilts among my other projects. Mindless sewing can be so therapeutic!

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If you have journeyed with me on my quilt adventures, you know I’m all about the borders. A plain white border sets off the center of the quilt nicely. Wanting to keep the pieced border simple, I just sewed strips, cut them, and pieced them into the long borders. Here’s something new I am beginning to do with these pieced borders: an eighth of an inch on each side I am sewing a seam, much like stay stitching in garment sewing. (The seams appear wavy because the fabric is not laying flat.) Now the seams stay closed when I work with the border and when the quilt top is quilted! This is another top for the “to be quilted” pile (you know, the one I never wanted to start to begin with.)

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September Already? August Roundup

Summer just started – didn’t it? Now September is here and I’m thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas! The time between now and the end of the year always goes so quickly for me. Nooooo, slow down!

Pinwheel top (Large)

I have been sewing – some days I’m so on task and really enjoying myself. Other days I just sort of piddle. A while back I asked for advice on borders for this pinwheel quilt. I love the fabric, although it’s not what you usually see me work with. After days and days of playing with combinations, nothing worked. I thought a ribbon border might work. Then I realized the real issue. I was not passionate about this quilt and not  willing to spend the effort doing a complex border. I cut strips, sewed and voila! Done! And, I really like it! Off to the “to be quilted” pile. I don’t like having that pile, I want them finished pronto – but hey, I’m being realisitic. Can’t do it all! ALl in all, a productive and fun month.

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Double Finish for Hospice!

String Quilt 2016 (Large)

Hurrah! Two quilts done and going to Hospice at year end. As long as I have been doing charity quilts (10 years?) my goal has been two quilts a year. Retirement has blessed me with the time to add to that. This year’s goal is six, and here are two of those. The string quilt makes me so happy – so bright and lively. I love the way the black and white strips set it off. Most of the fabric was donated to our group by Robert Kaufman – thank you!

String Quilt 2016-2 (Large)Scrap Cat Applique, whole 2016 (Large)

Number two is a smaller lap quilt. It would be a fun quilt for a younger person, especially one who likes cats! This is the third quilt I’ve made from this fabric. After it was all pieced, I just knew it needed something. I took lots of tiny scraps and made the kitty applique. It was fun to do and adds fun to the quilt. I will soon do a little tutorial on how to do this applique. A loop-de-loop quilting was done on the colored triangles and I did straight line quilting on the white. I think the straight lines really enhance the white sections. It takes a bit longer but was worth it.

Scrap Cat Applique 2016 (Large)

There’s one more Hospice quilt to finish before our group donates them in December. Hey, I have lots of time – right?!

Workin’ It Wednesday – Border Dilema

Pinwheel quilt

Leftover blocks from a split pinwheel quilt last year, so I sewed them up for another quilt top. I’m all about the borders lately, and don’t want to just “plain” border it again, which would be the easiest way to do it. I made some smaller pinwheels and am auditioning a couple of possibilities. Oy – what to do. A very thin red border and then the pinwheels on point with white print setting triangles? Or just the pinwheels with the white print and no separating border? WHAT should I do??? I need a quilt fairy on my shoulder advising me!

Pinwheels on pointBorder with whiteBorder with red strip

I’ll need to live with this on the design wall for a few days and hopefully the bolt of lightening will hit me. Actually, I shouldn’t use that as we really did get hit with lightening last week. A huge tree was destroyed, telephones fried as well as our garage door opener. Yes, we’re fine, just experiencing some stress. I’ll just immerse myself in sewing – one of the best destressers I have (except when trying to decide borders!)

Fallen limb (Large)

This is just the “threatening limb” that was hanging from the tree and had to be removed. The limb alone was a pretty impressive size.

Red, White & Blue Quilt Blocks

A quilting tool and notions company, Martelli Enterprises, recently announced a quilt block drive for 12 1/2 inch blocks that exhibit a theme of law enforcement and patriotism. I had just finished quilting two quilts, so the timing was perfect. Not too much red, white and blue in my stash, bits and pieces really, but I did manage to put together nine blocks. No real planning – just cut and go. It all turned out okay, but there were two mis-cuts. I really need to start curbing my enthusiasm, plan a bit better, and measure twice cut once! They are already in the mail – astonishing – and I love knowing they will be put in a quilt that will comfort a person or family. Love it when a company shows its heart and gets involved this way.

Workin’ It Wednesday! Borders

whole quilt (Large)

What would I do without my design walls?! A couple of weeks ago I sketched a medallion quilt pattern and hubby put it on EQ for me. The plan was to use all Kaffe fabrics in blues and greens. After much sewing – flying geese and half square triangles, and much arranging and rearranging on the design wall, it just wasn’t working. I left it alone for a few days and then decided to just rearrange the pieces. This is not even close to the original design, but I do like it. Now it’s border time! I think borders help to make a quilt come alive. I will do a pieced outer border but need to decide on the inner border. Here are my three choices:

choice 1 (Large)

Choice #1 – Too Busy – a NO.

choice 2 (Large)

Choice #2  ??

choice 3 (Large)

Choice #3 ??

 

I know #1 is a definite “no.” Help! Which do you think works better – #2 or #3?  Your help would really be greatly appreciated.

And what about my original quilt design?  I still have two bins full of Kaffe fabrics. I’ll happily pull some out and have another go at it another day!

Mountain Trip & Quilt Shop

Quilt & Sew-InLast week the heat in the Piedmont of NC was rather oppressive. We headed up to the mountains for a little escape. First, we checked out the Daniel Boone Gardens in Boone, NC. It’s a small natural garden maintained by volunteers. It was sweet, with the most amazing ferns ever, and glad we stopped.

And then the must stop – The Quilt Shop, Hwy 105 ext. in Boone. This shop is pure eye candy and fabric fun house!

pam and tod (Large)

When you walk in, you are greeted by the friendliest, happiest gals ever. Todd, the owner and Pam are always ready to help in any way they can. This shop’s specialty:  fabrics by Kaffe Fassett, Philip Jacobs and Brandon Mabry –  my absolute faves! All their current fabrics in all colorways are together and an amazing array of shot cottons, both striped and solids are also available.

wall of Kaffe (Large)more fabrics (Large)

There is also a wonderful selection of bright and beautiful batiks in all colorways and there are many selections of other designers, high quality quilting fabric in the shop. Absolutely something for everyone. The fabric organization makes it so easy to shop and everything is so neat and tidy.

Fabrics to cutmy selection (Large)

I REALLY behaved – picked up just a few greens to help a project in progress. Lots of fat quarters are available for sale. Don’t see one precut that you want? They’ll gladly cut one or however many you need from whatever fabrics you choose! I’ve noticed that fewer and fewer quilt shops do that anymore, so it is a real treat to have that option here.

quilts and long arm (Large)patterns (Large)

There is also a collection of patterns, tools and books available. A display of quilts hang around the shop and classes are offered for most of the quilts displayed. The shop also offers long arm services.

hubby waiting (Large)

Thankfully the shop was a very comfortable temperature and there was a handy bench for hubby to (cheerfully) wait it out! I’ll be back along with the others attending the Quilt & Sew-In in November (they offer a nice discount to us!) If you are heading to the Boone area, this quilt shop is a definite must!

Mega Scrap Project

pile of scraps

So very many scraps! There are six  boxes (14″ x 11″ x 6.5″) filled with fabric pieces left over from other projects.

scrap bin (Large)

I do not cut mine into strips or squares because I do not want to limit their use. They are sorted by color. I randomly chose a bunch of pieces from each box and cut them into 1 1/2″ strips. As you can see, there is no order to this pile! What am I making? A rug! There is a little sewing involved. I sewed the ends of two strips together, then took an open end and added another strip. I kept chain piecing until many were sewn then just clipped them apart. I do not press the strips in half as some do because that is just way too much pressing!

Have you guessed what I’ve made? Fabric yarn! Using a simple single crochet and a large crochet hook, I am crocheting a rectangle that will be a small scatter rug for my guest bathroom. It is amazingly heavy duty and durable and wonderfully colorful. I also just pile the “yarn” in this wonderful basket (I bought at a show – made in Africa) rather than wind it into a ball. I found that it was not necessary to do that and was another timesaver.

basketrug

It’s really fun to have a different kind of fabric project that travels well and uses so many fabric scraps!

A Shout out to Quilters’ Resources This great site posts all things quilting – shows, events, shops, guilds, retreats, etc.  They have listed the Quilt & Sew-In Retreat on the Show and Retreat page – thank you! Check it out – see what you might be missing!!

Scrapbuster Sunday – COLOR!!

Stick 1 (Large)

Out came the yellow, orange and brown scrap bins. I pictured a warmth and brightness with these colors.  The stick pinwheel blocks were easy and fairly quick to put together. I arranged and rearranged the blocks so many times on the design wall. I altered colors, put them in rows and once I started to group the like colors I liked it better. The arrangement I chose just sort of fell into place. I love it!

Borders can really enhance a quilt and bring it to life. I pulled the “sticks” into the border corners coinciding with their colors. I think it pulls the colors out and then are enhanced by the brown borders.

full quilt (Large)

I also scrappy pieced the backing. Usually when I do a scrappy quilt, the bins appear to have the same amount of fabric in them as when I started. Not so this time – score!! There aren’t many oranges left and very few yellows. Even the browns are somewhat limited. Yeah! A true scrapbuster!!

stick 4 (Large)

I love how my quilter quilted this one. She used both curvy lines and straight – a great vision for what this quilt needed.

stick 5 (Large)stick 3 (Large)

I’m calling it “Autumn Sunshine.” Yes, it is Spring – but I think the name definitely fits. (Someone did suggest this name to me and I only wish I could remember who it was so I could give her credit.)

stick 2 (Large)