Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Latest Finish . . . .

I finished my Bonfire Samper quilt top.  I enjoyed piecing every block.  I forget show much I love a good sampler quilt until I start working on one.  I fret over every fabric choice for every piece of every block, and enjoy every minute.  It's like a little color experiment with each block.

The Sister Sampler  Quilts book has three different settings for the sampler blocks.  This setting was my favorite, what a simple idea, but it packs a lot of punch.  I made one small change, I added cornerstones between the sampler blocks using the same tan fabric from the outer border, to pull that color through the quilt.

This is Lifetime Quilt Number 173
It finished at 82" x 82"
The pattern is Bonfire Sampler from the Sister Sampler Quilts book by AnneMarie Chany
The fabric is Valley by A Quilting Life and Basic Mixology by Studio M for Moda
It has approximately 668 pieces.

I recommend this book, it has three great settings for the sampler blocks, a nice variety of sampler blocks, and very nice illustrations and directions.

Maybe it would make a nice Valentines Day present!

And I continued with my goal of piecing houses for my Village project from my Bonfire Sampler project.

Here are the latest 4, I'm now up to 8! LOL

Next up, the APQ Quilt Along,  It All Adds Up.  Have you started  your project yet?  I've seen some great finishes on Instagram, #apqquiltalong.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Merrily I Move Along . . . .

I've had a fun and productive sewing week.

I'm working on Bonfire Sampler from the Sister Sampler Quilts book by AnneMarie Chany

I made the larger border blocks first, to avoid being short on fabric after piecing the sampler blocks.  My design wall is 90" x 90".

The pattern offers two size options, 9" or 12" finished blocks.  I decided to go with the 12" version.

And here are all the pieced sampler blocks.  There are several blocks to choose from in the book, I maybe used 1/3 of them.

All that's left now is to add the sashing and the borders.

Just in case you missed my last blog post, the fabric is a combo of Valley by Sherri and Chelsi for Moda and Basic Mixology by Studio M for Moda.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Up Next . . . .

I was so relieved to hear that several of you have a strong aversion to piecing backs just like I do!  Although really, I don't mind piecing one, every now and then, but piecing several over the course of a week is not fun at all.  Which is why I'm going to improve.  I'm going to give 108" backings another try.  Vintage Picnic by Bonnie and Camille for Moda will have 4 different 108" wide prints available, I'll let you know what I think of the quality and feel as soon as I get some.

I'm also going to change my attitude about backs.  A friend told me about a quilter named Diane Woodward who teaches classes on making "Happy Backs".  I don't think she has a blog but she has dozens of clever quilt backs on Pinterest.  She also has an Instagram account with the tag line "I make Mullet Quilts:  Business on the front, party on the back! "  What a great idea!  I've created a few party backs, but I can definitely improve in that area.

With all the backs done it's time to decide on my next project.  I can't make more Village houses if I don't create any scraps!  Have you happened to notice the myriad of sew alongs currently being promoted? Is it just me, or are there 10 times more than usual.  Maybe I'm just in a sew along mood.  I love sew alongs, sometimes I piece a quilt I would never have tried if it weren't for a sew along.  Sometimes I start out thinking the project isn't for me, then see some amazing finishes and jump on the bandwagon, better late than never.   This time of year I stay indoors and don't have much interaction with people, let alone quilters, so sewing with others is a great way to feel connected.

Even if I don't participate, I always enjoy seeing what other quilters create.  I'm following the Fat Quarter Shop's Crossroad's Quilt Along that's benefiting the March of Dimes.   Also the Moda All Stars Row by Row sew along featuring their book All in a Row has some interesting starts.  Pat Sloan is hosting or participating in several other sew alongs, check them out on her blog. And finally, Cindy at Hyacinth Quilt Designs is hosting an Outlined Plus Quilt Along.  Cindy's blocks are amazing, I'm eager to see some other finishes.

Here are some sew alongs that have I have moved from watching to my To Do list.

The Fat Quarter Shop promoted their top ten videos of 2015 with a sew along for each project and the patterns were free.  The Star Cakes Quilt was my favorite.

And these bloggers created some inspiring combinations.

There's even a $100 giveaway associated with this sew along, the deadline is 1/31.

I love the Star Cakes block, and I love the hst's that make up this block, hst's are my favorite.  I was thinking maybe this would be a good pattern for my Christmas quilt goal.  It uses a layer cake and I have two Christmas layer cakes.

The only thing that's stopping me is that I don't think this quilt has a Christmas feel.  Do you think if I used Christmas fabric it would?

American Patchwork and Quilting is hosting a sew along called

There are two projects in the April issue of American Patchwork and Quilting, one project in the Spring issue of Quilts and More magazine, and a free pattern online.  This year's theme is Plus Quilts.    I participated in their sew along last year and made 3 projects.  I can hardly wait for my magazine to arrive so I can start sewing along this year.

I love this book, Sister Sampler Quilts, by AnnMarie Chany, and was hoping to make a project from this book this year.

Well there's a sew along for this book going on right now!  (click here)  That's a win win!  I've selected my fabric and hope to get started this weekend, which should be easy, with no football I'll have plenty of time on my hands.

I'm planning to use Basic Mixology by Studio M and Valley by Sherri and Chelsi for Moda.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Moving On

I'm finally up to date on piecing my quilt top backings, all eleven of them!!

Yes Eleven.  I have no idea how I got so far behind, but that's never going to happen again. 

If I have my backing fabric when I finish a top, I'll usually piece the back then, I need to do a better job of thinking about the backing as I'm piecing my top, get it ordered and get it done.  Several of you mentioned 108" wide backings.  The last time I used wide backing fabric I didn't like the feel of the fabric, but that was ages ago, maybe they've improved, I"ll give it another go.

While piecing all those backs I was thinking about my Village project.  I've decided to use scraps to build my Village.

I studied the pattern and have placed a post-it note with the cutting requirements on my cutting table. When I'm working on a project I'll try to cut a few pieces as I go, and maybe piece a few houses too.

Here's my start!

Now that I don't have those backings hanging over my head I'm ready to start a new project, guilt free!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Random Thoughts for your Thursday

I've completely lacked focus this week in my sewing room.  I'm not really working on a project, my goal is to get caught up on piecing the backs and bindings for a dozen or so quilts I've finished.  I seem to be doing anything but, so here's what I have been playing around with and thinking about.

Remember this quilt from my 2016 Goals post?  I have an update.

The pattern is called Village and is currently available.  Look for it at your local quilt shop or buy it online, the Fat Quarter Shop currently has some in stock.  (click here)  It's a Miss Rosie's Quilt Co pattern and uses charm packs.  It finishes at 69" x 75".

See that wire basket full of scraps, that's where I stored all the scraps from my 2015 projects.  My goal was to use those scraps to make Village, and name it 2015 Village.  But now that I have the pattern I've come to realize those scraps aren't big enough to make the village houses.  So I'll save the 2015 scraps for another project.  I don't have many charm packs, but I do have some layer cakes, so  maybe I'll cut into some of those for my Village.  Another thought I had is to make sure I have bigger scraps for 2016 and go for a 2016 Village.  There's just something about a single quilt made from all the fabric I used in a year that appeals to me.  Stay tuned.

Yesterday I decided to make a Swoon block, using Vintage Picnic by Bonnie and Camille for Moda.

I have no plans for it, but it sure was a lot more fun to piece than a quilt back.

Frivols #6 showed up this week.  The tin is really cute, it has strawberries on it.  

 It's the Fig Tree Frivols, the fabric is Strawberry Fields Revisited.  I sure was happy some strawberries came to visit.

In another effort to avoid piecing quilt backs I opened the tin, (shocking I know) and made a 6 inch alternate block.  I went through a Fig Tree phrase a few years ago and decided I had enough Fig Tree quilts in my house to last a lifetime and hadn't bought any Fig Tree fabric since.  But I found Strawberry Fields Revisited a nice fresh change of pace, I enjoyed working with the fabric.  I plan to make an assortment of 4 and 6 inch blocks and piece them into some sort of wall hanging.

Summer Wind is out and on my daughter's bed.  I love the look of that quilt on her white wicker bed.