Great news! Last week I retired!! I have grand plans to do a lot of sewing. There has been much celebrating and meeting friends for lunch. Things will soon morph into my new normal and the studio awaits me. I have already done some rearranging – even set up my mini Keurig. Now how’s that for a sign of commitment?! My big tackle right now is this wall quilt. (Also knowing what day of the week it is!) It is a pattern from New Zealand’s Kiwi Quilts called Pohutukawa (New Zealand’s Christmas flower) by Mary Metcalf Designs.. What I have left are eighteen (18) 3 1/2 inch blocks that have nine pieces each. They are shapes, not rectangles. And the fabric is different in each. I have really been challenged but am determined to complete this. I don’t have enough of the fabric I need to complete one of the borders, so I will be searching. It will be joyous when I get to the borders! Please join me and follow me on my new adventure. There is some travel ahead. I plan to reconnect with my garden. Many books are waiting to be read. And mostly, I will enjoy every wonderful moment I have been given.
I am so excited that my Polka Dot Village is done! About 3 years ago Ellen Guerrant did a workshop for our guild using her “Tartan Town” pattern. It is a fun and whimsical design. There were about 20 of us and we all brought our piles of small stash pieces – colorful and whimsical. We shared mightily – as though none of us had ever seen so many different fabrics! In true quilter fashion the project got put away when I got home. Finally, about 2 year’s later, it once again saw daylight. I had more fabric choosing to do – who knew I would spend so much time for little windows and doors?
Now it is done and is hanging above our stairs leading down to our family room and my sewing studio. (Not a good place to get pics, but I wasn’t about to have us get the extension ladder to get it down.) I love how cheerful it is. Each house block has a bird – even an owl on the one rooftop! This is also another one of my UFO finishes for our guild’s challenge. Only 3 more to go!
A while back when I had my epic Christmas scrappy failure, I took all the pieces, sorted and saved them. There were several pinwheels that were large enough and would go together for a small quilt. Now, I have wanted to make a Christmas quilt for me for a very long time and this is NOT it! This is just a little holiday throw that will look good thrown over the bench in my living room. It is nice that my husband really likes it. It also felt good to use these and save some of my failure.
The green in the pics looks more turquoise, but in person it really is green and all looks very Christmasy. The borders and corner pinwheels helped a lot. I also used a magic binding which forms a flange while sewing the binding on by machine, both back and front. (Happens to be my new favorite way of putting on a binding).
What is also great, it is another UFO finish for my guild’s challenge. I now have 17 of the 20 finished! Three more to go and I am determined to get those done by the May deadline. And yes, I do have additional UFOs and am sure to start a few more!
Last year a friend and I went to a textile wholesale warehouse sale. I was looking for neutrals (I seem to have everything else!) I found a great white on white and a gray and white pinstripe. Of course, I had to check everything else out! We found batik charm packs at a great price and we loved the fabric line. We each bought several as our plan was to each make similar quilts from the charm packs. I found a pattern that we both liked and I began the process. (This is also one of the UFOs from my guild’s challenge).
Hint: If you are going to use a charm pack, check the pieces before you begin to cut and sew. I assumed that the charms, being die cut, would be perfect 5″ squares. Not the case. I have a die cut machine and my cut pieces come out perfect. In this case, I had to square up each and every charm. Some were just a tiny bit off, others were 1/8″ off. Add all those up and it will really mess up your work!
But I am not sorry that I purchased these. I used a variation of the split nine patch – 2 of the corner squares are pinwheels, then you “split” the nine patch. I love the end results. The pink border and brown binding really make it pop. This quilt is intended as a gift and now just needs a name and a label.
By the way, I am not recommending you avoid precuts – but do check them.
This is another scrapbuster! I got my son’s Christmas quilt done earlier in the year and then it was time to do one for my daughter. I used the scraps from the first quilt. This quilt started out as a traditional French braid. Seems like I never succeed at typical. A couple of the rows were wonky. Not wanting to embrace my seam ripper for hours, I decided on a redesign. I cut, added borders and sewed. I think I liked this better than the original plan! After I added the borders I felt like it just needed more – thus the holly appliques in the corners.
I believe this has become one of my favorite quilts ever. It’s bright, cheerful and So Christmas!
Yes, I have been away. A very busy Thanksgiving and then weeks of some nasty cold. I know my sewing machine has been lonely. It finally got revved up when I needed some little gifts. I decided on festive potholders. I have lots and lots of Christmas scraps so I began to piece and quilt. I used insulbright – 2 layers with the shiny sides facing out. That is the side that should face the heat. It really works. I held a piece to a hot iron, and did not feel the heat! This is a great way to use some scraps and makes a nice hostess gift or stocking stuffer. I also did a couple of designer potholders. I love how dramatic this fabric is. A little quilting around the images on the fabric, some binding – and a great addition to someone’s kitchen! Now that Christmas is just a few days away, I hope you are all in a good place and not sewing frantically to get gifts done. If you are, I wish you smooth sewing! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!
I just loved this group of flannels. Unfortunately, I did it again – I did not save a selvage for the fabric line name. I cut out all the fabric in a hexagon shape. This left a ton of waste triangles. Don’t ask me why, but I have been wanting to do a machine sewn hexagon quilt wherein you sew with Y seams. I marked the backs of all the hexies so I could see my starting and stopping points. It was certainly slower sewing than piecing rectangles, but I really enjoyed it and it wasn’t very difficult at all. I went online to find a flannel that would work for the border and I really lucked out. The dark brown and white polka dots worked well with the hexies even though it is a different line of fabric. I then sewed all the waste triangles together for an accent border. That was a lot of sewing. It got to the point I did not want to ever see another triangle! The end result was worth it – and no wasted fabric! An outside border, binding and done!
This too is one of my UFO’s for my guild’s challenge. I’m slowly but surely getting there. There are 20 on my list and I should have 17 done by the end of this year. The holidays will definitely take a bite out of my sewing time, but that’s okay – I will enjoy them! I have until June, 2015 – so here’s hoping!!