Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Some good finds

I was thrilled about finding the four fabrics above at WalMart of all places, but the one below really inspired me.

It's probably a fabric that most people have problems envisioning what to do with it, but I thought the heart blocks would make great centers for a pieced block, and that's what I have been doing on and off the last two days using my 3"Marti Michell template set.

And here's the result so far.

It was time intensive to make all of the HST's (Half Square Triangles), so I'm debating if I should just use this as a center and build around it with some of the other fabrics or make pretty much the entire top with the ribbon stars.
To be continued. :o)

The top is finished

of another American Hero quilt. Michelle's ready to help put more blocks together with me, so I need to start cutting up and preparing some fabric for her. She knows who these quilts are for and she's proud to help.
The Flying geese units are easy for her to piece and I don't have to worry about her using an accurate 1/4" all the time, because we're using the Quilt in a Day Flying geese ruler. Since we'll be making quite a few more of the FG units, I'll have to come up with some block variations, so not all tops will look the same. That will also make it more interesting for me to work on them, because I get bored with the same designs easily. lol

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Working on American Hero blocks

Michelle was helping me today to work on some more blocks for an American Hero quilt. While I was ironing, cutting and marking the fabric, she did simple straight line sewing on my Pfaff.
As you can see from the picture she was having a lot of fun zipping away and did a really good job. Together we made enough blocks for 2 1/2 quilts - that's when I ran out of the fabric we used. I hope to find some more of it next week when I have to get more fabric for sashing and borders as well.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Love my Juki

The kids (who are on Spring Break this week) keep me quite busy, but I don't let that keep me from having some play time with my quilting projects and Juki to keep my sanity. LOL

One of the things I played around with yesterday was a layout for the batik star blocks and here's my failed layout attempt for the sashing of it.

I think the fabric I am auditioning in the sashing is going to be great for the border of this quilt to pull out all of the colors, but the stars are just too busy to be used in the sashing. So for now I'll let the project "age" a bit till I come up with something I like better.

This evening I used one of my large heart stencils, that I had bought while in Washington three weeks ago, to mark a "practice sandwich" with the Quilt Pounce.

I used some variegated Superior thread, Machingers (great machine quilting gloves that I've also gotten free with my Juki purchase) and my new Juki of course. :o)

After I did the outline I thought it looked a bit boring, so I added some stippling around the heart.

And then filled the center.
Now I just need to decide on a fabric to use as a backing and binding to turn this into a pillow. Don't want this block to go to waste and I love pillows! This one's going to be about 14".

BTW, the table runner I was working on the other day is finished, but it looks a bit rumpled in the picture, because I have just taken it out of the dryer. Once it's flattened I think it looks good on my grandmother's old Singer cabinet with my kids' pictures.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Bored? Who?

Not me, that's for sure!

I'm having fun playing around with my Juki.

Today I was able to finish swapping out the rest of the shaded 4-patch blocks for a small swap that I am hosting and completed piecing the top below with blocks that I've made and some from the exchange. I love the scrappy look of it. Right now it measures 49"x72" and I'm tempted to make more blocks to add to the sides.

Next I dug out a small table runner. The red and white blocks were made a while ago (I think about 2-3 years) when a swap of those blocks was going on. Since I never finished enough blocks to participate (the 3 blocks are it! lol), I had to come up with a way to use them, so after I had some of the blue fabric left from a quilt I had pieced, I used the rest to create an on-point setting of the table runner.

This block is pretty blah! And didn't inspire me for the longest time how to quilt it.

Till I found this 8" stencil (the blocks are 9")

As you can see from the back side, the dark setting triangles were stipple quilted.

On the front I used variegated (r/w/b) King Tut thread.

I'll try to find some fabric for the binding after I'm done straightening out my sewing corner and then I hope to get the binding made and stitched on the front by machine tomorrow to have it prepared to take with my to DS's Kung Fu to stitch the back on by hand there. Once I finish it, I'll post a picture.

Friday, March 16, 2007

more things I'm working on

The batik star blocks were mainly from a monthly BOM, but since I lost one of the blocks, I had to make a replacement block up for that and another one was sewn together differently (don't ask me why lol), so a second block had to be replaced. With all of the blocks done now, I have to come up with how I want the sashing and borders to pull everything together. I'll be using my EQ5 software to do so.

After having some cut out Tumbling block pieces laying around for several months now, I decided it was time to at least put this small center together. When inspiration hits me, I'll decide how I'll proceed to incorporate this into a probably twin size top, so be on the look-out for future posts. ;o)

Last, but not least, I've been playing around with my shaded 4-patch blocks that I've been hosting a swap with. Of the three projects posted here, this one is most likely the first one to be turned into a finished quilt. I probably won't add a border beyond this and for the quilting I'll most likely just stipple quilt it.

FP class round-up

The Flower power class has come to an end and I was only able to complete the little tulip wall hanging, which my daughter claimed, so it's hanging in her room.

The other UDA project I worked on is this little thistle piece. The thread painting is really addictive and I'm sure I'll try more projects with that. As you can see this is still just the center, but as time allows I'll turn this into a small wall hanging as well.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

My visit in Washington

Boy, it's been a while since I've last posted and the time just seems to fly!

So I'll try to compress the happenings of the last weeks and will try to break it up into several posts to not write a novel. lol

Sooooo, in the picture below you see (from left to right) Robin, Molly and myself.

For the annual Sew & Stitchery Expo in Puyallup, WA, I was invited by Molly to stay at her house. Robin and I flew in Wednesday evening and Thursday and Friday the three of us spent in seminars and, as time allowed, browsed the many, many vendors. The seminars were great (although some were a bit different from what we imagined) and we even got to take a picture with Marti Michell!!!

Marti recognized me from when we were selecting fabric at Parkland Parish for one of her classes I was teaching there and I thought that was neat, because she sees hundreds of faces during expo.

With Expo drawing to a close for us on Friday and having been done with our seminars I was finally able to make my BIG purchase! After comparing prices on Thursday and Friday, I decided that the Juki TL-98Q was the perfect fit for me for the price and the features I was looking for. Best thing was that I didn't have to lug the machine on the plane with me, because they offered FREE shipping and handling and NO tax. On top of that I got a $300 shopping spree at Superior Threads! So who could beat that? So below you can see my new "baby" that arrived at my home at super speed and my thread selection.

Saturday we went quilt shop hopping with Molly's friend Judi (who was driving) and Becca, who belongs to WASIQ (an internet quilt group, Molly, Robin and I belong to). The picture below was taken at The Quilted Rose in Orting, WA.

Below are some of the purchases from Expo and our shop hop:

The stencils were picked up at Bayside quilting in Olympia, WA, a longarmer's paradise.

So as you can see, we had a lot of fun and some very productive days. :o)