Monday, January 6, 2020

A Finished Top and A Finished Quilt

I finished the top of my little Twister quilt this afternoon. The prints in the quilt have little hippos and baby feet and stuff like that. Just a sweet fabric collection and a sweet little quilt. I'm calling it "It's A Girl", which is the name of the fabric collection (Riley Blake). There is an It's a Boy fabric collection too that is still available. It was so simple and quick to make that I look forward to another Twister quilt with a different size ruler.

I like to put flannel on the backs of my baby quilts, and I thought I had some white flannel with a pink dot on it; but I must have used it. So I'm gonna try to get out tomorrow to find something. I have about 50,000 yards of fabric and nothing for the back of this quilt. Sheesh.

Credit where credit is due: from the book, Let's Twist by Marsha Bergren. I saw the border treatment in a photo online, maybe Pinterest, and figured out how to make that myself.

Woodland Scenes was one of my One Monthly Goals for November, but I didn't get it finished until Dec 3. Even though it was last year, I thought I'd go ahead and post it.

The entire quilt, front and back, is flannel. I found a pantograph that had trees, stars and moons on it, and I'm happy with the way the quilting turned out.

I thought I might take this one to camp, but hubby has claimed it and is putting it to good use on his recliner, lol.

Credit where credit is due: posted Nov 3, 19.

Saturday, January 4, 2020

New Year, New Goals

Happy New Year to all. It's a new year with a new set of goals and new projects I want to work on. I'm doing the One Monthly Goal again this year--for me it was not 100% successful last year, but it was enough of a motivator that I'll do it again this year. Although I did not list the last one, Woodlands, I did finish 11 quilts, so I'm happy.

For the month of January, my goal is to finish this small baby quilt. My chapter is doing a bucket list challenge this year, and I chose a Twister quilt. To see what others are planning for OMG for January, click here!

I've had the smallest size ruler for years but never used it. There are now 6 different Twister rulers from two different companies in a range of sizes--and I now own all of them. For my challenge, my plan is to make one in each size. This is the first, and if this is the only one I finish, I will have still met the challenge.

This will be a baby quilt for a new baby in the family. The blocks finish to 9", and I'm adding two rounds of borders to bring it up to about 36" square. In the upper left corner of the photograph, I have two border squares set in place, 30 more to go. One seam, should be quick.

The process to make a Twister quilt is not difficult or time consuming--it's actually pretty quick. You must have the Twister ruler though: and I have to say, there is a fair amount of waste, which some people will find unacceptable. I'm not sure how I feel about that yet, so I made myself a template for the border squares instead of using the Twister method, no waste there.

The packaging for each ruler tells you what size squares to cut for the first step. For this quilt, I needed 5" squares--a charm pack would have worked very well. I happened to have a layer cake, so I took one of each print out of the stack and cut them into quarters, which gave me 4 charm packs, essentially. It'll be fun to see how many quilts I can get out of this one layer cake.

The first step for my block was to sew the required number of squares together and  surrounded with strips of background fabric. Making blocks rather than sewing together rows and rows of squares for a whole quilt, as some patterns call for, is an easier way to learn how to do this, I think. Plus I liked the way the blocks looked and the design flexibility that comes with it.

It is not easy to see, but in the photograph, the ruler has been placed for the first cut in the upper left corner of the block. The lines on the ruler are aligned with the seams you have sewn in the block.

Here, the units have all been cut out from the block, and the scraps around the edges and the middles have been removed. Four squares and a border gave me 9 units.

Next, the units are rotated slightly to form a square.....

.... and then they're sewn together to make one block. I love this!

As these are smaller units, larger scale prints probably wouldn't have worked well. Some of mine were a medium scale, and I think they'll be fine. I also knew the prints with white backgrounds wouldn't have enough contrast with my background fabric, but I elected to use them anyway to use them up. Baby won't mind, lol.

Sunday, November 3, 2019

OMG for November

What on earth is the matter with Blogger these days? I have been having a devil of a time uploading photos. And they are still not forwarding all of my comments. If this keeps up, I may wind up switching to WordPress. Get it together, Blogger!

Here we are in another new month, and I have two more UFOs I want to cross off my list. The first one is a pattern from Maple Island Quilts called BQ2. I am calling mine Woodland Scenes... because that's what this flannel fabric looks like to me. This will wind up being a sofa quilt for camp.

The second one is the Missouri Two Step. This one is only a couple of years old but still time to get it off my plate.

To see what others would like to accomplish this month, click here.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

OMG for October Done

Woo hoo, made it under the wire again, and two more UFOs bite the dust! One is Yankee Puzzle #1, and I'm donating it to a local veterans' shelter.

The other one is Stella Blue. I think my friend Koleen did an excellent job choosing the colors and fabrics.

See in the upper left corner of the photo, how five of the flying geese blocks are flying the wrong way? I panicked momentarily, thinking I got them backwards; but I double checked the pattern, and it's correct.Not that it matters, I suppose.
I used a pantograph that was more dense than I usually use, but it is the sort of thing I think Koleen would have chosen had she quilted it herself. In the end I very much liked it.

There are some excellent finishes this month. See what others have accomplished here.

I'm aiming to finish two more quilts in November. The blocks for the Missouri Two Step are all put together, just need to add some borders. And I have a BQ2 quilt top finished and ready to quilt. 

I made this sewing gadget holder a week or so ago. The pattern was given to me by a friend, and unfortunately it wasn't attributed. I hunted for it on the internet but no luck. Anyway, it is nothing more than a quilted cover with pockets that slips over a freestanding acrylic 10" x 8" picture frame. Quick to sew and oh so handy. 
Not having made one before and not having a photo in front of me, I didn't realize that so little of the base fabric would show on the front. This is the back of the sleeve, and I really wanted to see more of this fabric on the front. Had I known, I would have used my focus fabric instead of the red for the bottom pocket. I have more of the selvage fabric, so maybe I'll gift this one and make another to keep. 
I also made a bunch of soap this month. Candy corn... 
Beehive soap, scented with honey...

And animal soaps for my granddaughter.
I like to admire my soaps, so I line them up across the windowsill in my kitchen, lol. DGD stayed with us a couple weekends ago, and she piled all the soap bars into her big teapot and played with them all weekend. Sometimes the simplest things are the most fun.

Friday, October 4, 2019

One Monthly Goal for October

I have two goals for the OMG Challenge this month--to finish the last of the Yankee Puzzle quilts, which has been sitting on the frame for weeks now....

.... and to finish the Stella Blue quilt. Stella Blue is a pattern by Miss Rosie's Quilt Co, I believe, and the center part of the top was made by my quilting pal Koleen, who passed away a couple of summers ago. She also had the flying geese units for the border made, but I had to square them up and sew them into the borders. My 1/4" seam allowance is not the same as Koleen's was, so I had a devil of a time getting them to fit correctly.

It's a very pretty quilt, and I love the colors, so looking forward to finishing it.

To see goals others have set for themselves for the month of October, click HERE

I have some other projects in the works this month. The Missouri Two Steps blocks are finished and ready to be sewn into a top.

And because I am not one to shy away from creating more UFOs, lol, I started sewing this miniature flag quilt, a pattern by The Hope Chest. It requires the use of the Split Recs ruler from Studio 180. I don't think half rectangle blocks are particularly easy to do, so I am thrilled how easy these blocks are going together.

When I first starting seeing the demos for Studio 180 at quilt shows, I didn't pay much attention. Who needs more rulers, not to mention the expense? But I finally took a Hunter's Star class with a local instructor certified to teach the Studio 180 methods, and I was hooked. These rulers are based on the same concept that so many of us use for half square triangles--make it oversized and square it up. They work as advertised, and boy, do they save a lot of headaches. Quite a few of these rulers are for specific types of units that are a trial to make, so I now own most of their rulers. Money well spent. I am not affiliated with these people, just a happy convert.

Last but not least, two things came together for me this week. My quilt chapter is doing a Bucket List Challenge this year. How many times have we said, gee, I always wanted to make this quilt, hence the challenge.

I was originally going to do a Wheel of Mystery (also called Winding Ways), but I found a couple of the larger Twister rulers on a recent bus trip and bought them because I always wanted to make a Twister quilt. Coincidentally a gal in our chapter did a demo on Wednesday for the Twister block. So! I have a new grand-niece in the family, and I want to make this small baby quilt for her. It will measure about 40" square, depending on how wide a border I add.

It is cold here today, in the 40s. I hated to turn on my heat, but it got too chilly in the house. I'm hoping it will be warmer in the afternoons on Saturday and Sunday so I can get out and wash windows and screens to put away for the winter. I'd really rather be quilting, lol, but this needs to get done.

Monday, September 30, 2019

One Monthly Goal Done...

...done, just under the wire. The top of the Heat Wave quilt is done! It turned out that it wasn't that refreshing of a change, lol. This was one of the more challenging projects I've done because of all the points. There was a lot of sewing, ripping and re-sewing to get points where I wanted them, and it is still far from perfect. But it won't get better, so it was time to stop fiddling with it and get done.

No idea how or when it will get quilted; but after 25 years, it's a good feeling to have the top done.

Ready or not, fall has arrived in Maine, a bit early this year it seems. The temperatures are already dipping, and the leaves are changing color and falling. Even this tiny tree, barely an inch and a half tall, is starting to turn red. Summer is my least favorite season, but we had such a beautiful summer this year that I hate to see it come to an end.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Two Steps Forward, Two Steps Back

Star Crazy was my One Monthly Goal for August; and it is disheartening that, for a second month, I couldn't get this project finished. I sewed on the next two rounds of borders, and you can see how badly rippled the outer white border is. I should have measured the quilt top before I added the last green border, but I took it on faith that my quilt dimensions matched the directions for cutting that border. Wrong! And I know better!! 
There was no way that was going to quilt out, so I rrrrripped them back off. Put it in the corner and haven't touched it since. I'll continue to work on it, but my One Monthly Goal for the month of September will be a refreshing change. It's a pattern called Heat Wave by Karen Stone, copyright 1995, so it's an oldie but goodie.
I hand dyed a gradation of colors plus the background for this quilt, a long, loooong time ago. I spent much of my time at camp this summer working on paper piecing the blocks, and I finally finished all of the component parts. I did run out of the hand dyed yellow right at the very end, found another piece of it, and will finish up the last couple blocks. Then it's time to put it all together.
Paper plates work very well to organize all the parts. I took a class with Michelle Renee Hiatt last summer at the Maine Quilts show, and that was a suggestion from her. It works great, and I've been organizing my sewing that way ever since. You can stack 'em up and keep everything separate. Sometimes I write cutting instructions right on the plate. 

My One Monthly Goal for the month of September is to finish the top for the Heat Wave quilt.  It's doable.You can see what others are doing this month here.