Saturday, October 18, 2014

Katie's lone star

This Lone Star quilt was made by my sister, Katie.  I love it!

She did needle turn applique on the corner blocks. I kept it pretty simple with the quilting here by doing an echo inside the orange flower, and outlining the inner flower. Since she fussy-cut the centers, I just stitched around the center circle and added a few protruding wiggles around it.

Leaves in the border, and a fancy feather. In the quarter circle, I had a hard time thinking of what to do there, but ended up doing a paisley feather. Angela Walters has the video demonstrating it here.

The center star I saved until last. Because I struggled to come up with a design. But I found this in Sue Patten's book and decided it was one I could do and looked pretty cool.  perfect.

The orange flowery fabric was pretty busy and decided to quilt something simple there because it would be hard to see it anyway. 

The back!

The AQS show was a couple weeks ago already.  I took a class with THE Angela Walters and it was pretty fun.  She covered a lot of stuff from her new book 'Shape by Shape' which i bought and had her sign it.  I didn't get to spend a ton of time at the show like i usually do. I had my 3 month old along and so between feeding her, myself, and my quilting class, there was barely enough time to spend all my money! But I did just in time though ;) I finally bought a ruler base and foot for my machine! I've been wanting one for a while, but finally bit the bullet this year. I have yet to actually try it out, but someday I will. I might have to stay up super late to be able to try it without being interrupted by some little one needing fed, help with the potty, help hooking up a wagon to a toy tractor, or some other random thing. But I'll get there!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

A Baby quilt receives a second life

This baby quilt has a long story behind it.  It belongs to my brother-in-law, and is about the only object he has from his childhood.  He found it stuffed in an air duct in his father's house, after he had passed away.  About 80% of the embroidery was gone, only a few faint lines remained.  Since this was so special to him, he had my MIL work on it and fix it up.  She filled in all the embroidery (something she had never done before) and added strips around the outside to replace the damaged edges.  Then she backed it all with a thin iron-on interfacing to help stabilize the now very thin fabric.  

I think by the end of this project, my MIL has become pretty good at embroidery!  To quilt it I just echoed the animals a couple times and filled in the rest with a simple meander.

I didn't do much quilting in the animals, just a couple of the bigger ones.  This is one quilt that won't see much use, so I wasn't super worried about leaving those larger areas unquilted.  The back is a baby blue flannel and the batting, Hobbs 80/20.  Now it is all fixed up and ready to last and be cherished for another 40+ years.

So there you go!  Another example of a quilt that changed someone's world!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Katie's modern HST quilt

My sister whipped this quilt up in a weekend and I finally got it quilted up for her.  

Using a pink thread in the pink and purple areas, I did pebbles in the pinks and swirls in the purple. 

In the green areas, I switched to a green thread and did a wavy design.  

The back.

The AQS show is coming to Des Moines in one week!  October 1-4th actually.  I usually take a class there, and this year Angela Walters is teaching!  I'm pretty excited!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Honeycomb quilt

Here is our do.good stitches Haven group quilt for March.  COMPLETED!!  I had each member make 2 honeycomb blocks from Marla's tutorial using pink, green, orange and yellow, a white background, and a fun print for the centers.  Everyone did such a nice job with the blocks, and picked some cute things for the centers.  I love how it turned out!  It measures 59 by 71 inches, so it is a nice throw size.

I had a hard time deciding on what to quilt in the blocks, and decided to alternate with 4 different designs.  

I like them all.  

A funky feather border.

ta daa!

Our super snazzy label on the back.  I confess that I used some local help to finish the quilt.  My mother-in-law did most of the hand-stitching of the binding.  With 2 little ones now, it took me a week to get 2 feet done.  At that rate it would take me way too long to complete it.  She loves to bind, and since I still have several of her quilts in my 'to quilt' pile, it would be a little while before she has one of her own to bind.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Back in the saddle

Carol made this super scrappy quilt with lots of HST's.  

I quilted a big free-flowing feather all over it in a cream thread.  

the back.

and here are my blocks for August do.good stitches group.  we had July off, but Sara posted her Aug. blocks a month early so we had lots of extra time to work on them.  With a newborn and a toddler in the house, that really worked out well in my favor.  Sara had us make 8 six inch pieced center string blocks using all kinds of scraps.  Scraps?  no problemo!

my blocks turned out pretty wild. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

We're still here!--Peg's Butterflies

This is Peg's butterfly quilt she made with her embroidery machine.  Isn't it fabulous?!

I had this quilt on my machine for about a whole month, only working on it an hour or so a week because being on my feet for too long made my back hurt and pretty much wiped me out of energy for the rest of the day.  

I quilted shells in the black borders and, in white thread, echoed the butterflies 2 times around, then filled in the background with little meandering loops.  

Here on the back you can see how I filled in the large border with feathered swirls and incorporated a few Judi Madsen inspired big butterflies.  

The sashings we done using a swirl design I saw on Jenny Pedigo's blog a while back.  It turned out so pretty!  I hunkered down and finally finished and delivered Peg's quilt on a Friday afternoon.  Then on Sunday our little girl was born!  Whew!

Here is my little sweetie pie at less than 24 hrs old.  Her name is Gretta and she is just perfect.  She is now 3 weeks old and we are all doing well.  It's amazing how much she has changed in just 3 short weeks.  She is starting to fill out and get a bit of a double chin.  Big brother loves to hold her and give and take away her pacifier.  And she is a very heavy sleeper (thank goodness!)  She has slept through 2 parades, even with firetrucks and police sirens blaring, she barely flinched.  And even my attempts to wake her to feed her by vacuuming the house have failed miserably.  But the best way to get her out of her deep slumber is to change her diaper.  Just be sure to have the new one ready to make the quick switch before you take the dirty one off, or she will make you will regret it! :)

I haven't touched my longarm since she arrived, but I am thinking about all the quilts I need to do.  The problem is finding the time!  With a 2 year old and a newborn in the house, I'm lucky if I can get a shower in or even make a meal.  I'll get back at it all in good time.  I did complete a baby quilt top for Gretta, so that will probably be my next quilt on the longarm--if I can ever get around to it!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Brenda's Cabin Tracks

Here's one my quilting team (Mom, me, sister, SIL) made for a cousin.  It is called 'Cabin Tracks'.  Oh the strip piecing in this one!  My mom and I pulled and cut fabrics one weekend for the cabin blocks and divied them out to everyone to work on before we got together a couple weeks later.  Then all we had to do was the sashings and borders.  No problem!  

I believe the sashing strips were cut 0.75 inches and the borders maybe 1.5.  Narrow!  We used up a lot of old, ugly fabric bits in this one.  Along with some pretty and new ones of course!  Lots of mindless sewing, which is just the ticket for this preggo-brain infected quilter these days :)  We didn't get it all together in one weekend, but we got all the little strips together and cut to size and were able to start sewing a few of them to the cabin blocks.  

I quilted an all-over feather in the center part, loops in the narrow black border, and a straight meander along the outer border.  

The back.  We gave it to our cousin over the weekend, and she loved it!  But she wasn't able to take it home with her yet- Mom wanted to enter in into a local quilt show coming up in a couple weeks.  Aren't we mean?

Mom says she would like to make another one to keep for herself one day...  uhhh.  Start cutting strips now!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

DGS Update & my WIP

Well, I haven't been doing a whole lot of longarming lately.  It's too exhausting for me right now.  (I'm 36+ weeks preggo btw.)  Plus my 2.5 year old little guy has given his 3 hour afternoon naps the veto.  So that has really put a damper on my productivity around here.  So when I get a few moments of me time when he's with daddy in the tractor, I just want to sit down.  So that means I either go on the computer or sew on something. 

So I've been making progress on this quilt--my Do Good Stitches Haven group quilt for March.  I finally have the top all together!  Now I just have to quilt it up, bind, label and send it to Rochester, NY.  Think I can get it done in the next couple weeks??  That would be great, but probably unlikely.  We'll see. 

And, I got my June blocks done in record time!  Joey picked out this block for us- applique!  A little out of the box for our group, and out of my comfort zone, but I love how they turned out.  She was very proactive and sent us the backing fabric, leaf templates, freezer paper, and the 1/4 inch bias green stems.  All we had to do was the leaves and 'sketch-stitch' them down.  She even provided us with plenty of online tutorials and examples.  You can find those on our Flikr page.  Using spray starch was highly recommended when pressing the leaf edges under, which I have never used before.  Oh my goodness, where have I been?!  Spray starch is awesome, and has become my new best friend.  But pressing all those little edges under was still kind of a pain.  My thumb got a little red, but I have no scars to report.  I have a few extra leaves leftover and I'm thinking of making a set of 4 more blocks into a pillow for myself.  One of these days...

But here's what I've really been working on: making pennants!  Amy made a pennant quilt a few months ago, and it really resonated with me.  Mostly because you could use up little bitty scraps and strips, which add up fast in my scrap bins.  I don't have a fancy triangle ruler, so I just made a paper template (that now has little Doritos cheese fingerprints on it!  nice.)  that measures 5.5 inches tall and use that to cut out my muslin foundations and to "triangle up" my pennants once they are pieced.  I try to be extra careful not to shave off any of my paper template while I'm trimming each side.

So I've been slowly making my way through my color-coordinated scrap bins/shoeboxes and making these little pennants.  I've gone through my pinks, purples, blues and greens- making about a dozen or so in each color.  Long skinny strips and long triangular pieces seem to work the best for these.  So far I have about 50 done--they are addicting and quick to make!  

I have also been sewing some of the bigger scraps together into 10 inch blocks as I go too.  
Next up: Reds, yellows and oranges!

Monday, June 9, 2014

ABC Embroidered Baby Quilt

Connie embroidered this adorable ABC baby quilt.

She's an excellent embroiderer!  Word is she learned from the best: her Mom.  

As you can see, I did an all-over feathered swirl on it.  I couldn't remember if this was for a baby boy or girl, or if they even know the gender, so I thought feathered swirls were a safe design. 

Thanks Connie!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Winter Snowstorm

Sharon's mother made this neat quilt top before she passed away 10+ years ago.  It has been in Sharon's closet ever since just needing to be finished.  Now Sharon's mom had a longarm that Sharon inherited, and 5 years ago I bought that machine from her and thus started my longarm quilting journey.  And so this is kind of a special full circle kind of quilt.  

Her only request was to quilt swirls to make it look like a snowstorm, and since her mother always quilted a heart in all of her quilts, I was to sneak a heart in somewhere.  

I quilted each house differently. 

Can you see where I quilted the heart?

The pieced border and flying geese got a little special treatment with c2c and such.  The narrow border got a pine-y looking treatment.

I used a gray thread in the dark areas, and then switched to white for the 'snowstorm' and white triangles in the border.  Although I no longer have her machine, (I upgraded to a Nolting 20" Fun quilter 2.5 years ago) it was her love of quilting that somehow trickled down long after her passing and ignited my love of longarm quilting.  And what would I be doing if I wasn't keeping busy longarm quilting?  Probably living in a much cleaner house, with my kitchen and dining room painted looking like a page out of magazine.  riiight.  Probably more like a LOT of time playing Bejeweled or internet hearts or something.  That's no good.