Thursday, July 28, 2011

The House that Thelma Built . . . . .

So here are a few of the "house" quilts from the Infinite Variety: Three Centuries of Red and White Quilts show.

I've noticed online that this block has two names, sometimes this block is called "Little Red Schoolhouse" and sometimes "The House that Jack Built".

This is quilt #755 and was hung in Pavilion 5, Exterior Middle. I'm guessing these are more houses that Jack built since they're surrounding a church, like a a little red house town.

This is quilt #1012, and was hung in Pavilion 8. Another little red house town surrounding a church.

This was my favorite house quilt.

I like the fence and how that one row of houses are upside down.

This was the inspiration for my little quilt.

My houses are 4 1/2 inches, and even though they were pesky, I love them. I would love a whole quilt of these houses but not houses that are only 4 1/2 inches, I would want to build bigger houses for a full size quilt.

My version is 21" x 39" and has 450 pieces.

For the whole project I'm now up to 2,090 pieces. I think I'm over the half way point.

Next up, a few of these.

Do you know what these quasi four patch blocks make?

This rickrack design! Did you know that? At least that's how I think I make this pattern, that's what I"m going with, stop back by to see how it all works out!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Seeing Red . . . .

Have you seen the September/October issue of McCall's Quilting?

What do you think of that Dresden quilt on the cover?

I love it! What a great idea, to use red as the background fabric for those blocks. I really like the contrast between the light floral prints and that fantastic red. Don't like red? You could use any color as a background I suppose, blue, green, whatever suits your fancy. But you know me and I fancy red!!

Not only do I love the red background, I love the three different sizes of plates.

I don't have much in the way of floral fabric with a light background. Almost all the fabric in my stash has a colored background. This will require some shopping.

The pattern is called Dresden Doilies and is designed by Gerri Robinson. (there's a kit available on her website, Planted Seeds Designs) She has a pattern in almost every McCalls Quilting magazine. My Red White and Wonderful quilt was a Gerri Robinson pattern.

This quilt finishes at around 60" x 60", what a nice size.

The instructions provided by Gerri call for glueing the plates and center circles to the background fabric then quilting. I'm not so sure about that, have you ever tried such a thing? Wouldn't that center circle ravel over time if the edges weren't turned down?

Even if I have to hand stitch those plates and center circles on, I still love this quilt. It's been ages since I saw a pattern in a quilt magazine that I liked well enough to tear out and file in my pattern binder. I was just about ready to let this subscription expire, I may have to hang on a little longer.

Current Project Update.

So I'm working on this Red and White Tribute Quilt, and I thought some little red school houses would look good so I sat down with my pencil and paper, did some cyphering, and came up with a plan for making 4 1/2 inch blocks.

Up until this point, the math part of this project has been one of the things that I've really enjoyed. I had no problems whatsoever with the main structure of the school house, but that roof line was another matter entirely.

This was probably my worst attempt . .

Now this is one perfect roof.

Trouble is, it took me NINE attempts before I got that perfect roof.

The first roof I actually tried to piece using templates that I made, not even close!

I then figured I would "just draw" the roof and paper piece it. The second roof, how did that happen!! My first lesson in mirror imaging when drawing a pattern to be paper pieced. I guess I could have made all the houses facing west instead of east, but I've NEVER seen them that way in a quilt so I figured I better draw the roof backwards.

The problem was getting that white diagonal strip to match perfectly with the white horizontal strip in the house.

Now it's down to a few more blocks and a few chimneys and I'll be good to go.

I'm thinking you'll see a finished school house quilt this week, stop back by.

Note to Ann from basket blog - basket blocks with corner triangles finished at 11 1/2 inches!

Friday, July 22, 2011

A Tisket a Tasket . . . . . .

One of the many things I love about having a blog is going back and revisiting my posts for my different projects. I pretty much always go back and reread my posts when my top comes back from the quilter, it's usually good for a laugh, I've usually worked myself into a frenzy over something during the project that I've completely forgotten once it's done. I didn't go back and reread my posts for this project, I remember this quilt like I finished it yesterday.

A la Mode (click here for more details regarding this quilt)

This was my 2010 summer project, my first (but not my last) quilt using Fig Tree fabric (mostly Folklorique) and my first basket quilt. I still remember how much I enjoyed making each basket block, adding the corner triangles, adding the sashing, coming up with that outer border, all fond memories. I also remember all the while I was working on this project I was picturing that quilt on my bed the next summer.

And here it is, the next summer and that quilt is on my bed!

Since it's a king size quilt, and one that I planned to use, my quilter and I thought an overall pattern would be a good choice. The quilting pattern is some sort of leafy/feather design, hard to describe but nice to look at.

For the back of the quilt I found this fabric on sale for $5 a yard, a nice Fig Tree fabric that had the same background color as the background fabric on the front of the quilt. So now the quilt even looks pretty when it's turned down at bedtime.

I loved this basket quilt so much that I've spent the last 12 months searching for another basket quilt pattern that I would like at least as much if not more than A la Mode. Here are a few of my favorites:

The pattern is MoJo by Carrie Nelson for Miss Rosie's Quilt Co and this quilt is Nicole's Ridiculously Cute Basket Quilt made with Simple Abundance, I love it.

This is Door Country Cherry Baskets by Lisa Bongean & Carole Charles. It's in their Summer Gatherings book. Those little baskets finish at 6 1/4 inches and there are 99 of them!!

This book has three really cute basket patterns, it's by Need'l Love. (their website has great pictures of these quilts)

I was introduced to this magazine when I was in Utah, Quilts Japan.

I don't understand a word written in this magazine but I don't care, the quilts are amazing. The March 2011 issue was loaded with basket quilts, here are my favorites,

little baskets surrounding bigger baskets, very clever.

And the little baskets in the border are randomly turned different directions, I like that too.

There are several things going on in this quilt, big basket, little baskets, varying background colors, baskets in the borders. It's one of those quilts that you need to really look at for awhile to take it all in.

Another little basket quilt, I love the happy colors and the shamrocks thrown in for fun.

Here's one with all types of baskets.

Inside those round blocks are little baskets, I'm ok with the green but for some reason I think it would look even better in red!

I'm not even sure if the patterns are included in the magazine, and even if they were, I don't speak the language, so the quilts in the Quilts Japan magazine may just be wishful thinking on my part.

I sure hope I can squeeze in a basket quilt project for 2011. Can you have too many basket quilts . . . . I don't think so!

Let me know if you have a favorite basket pattern or a basket quilt you think I need to add to my list!

I hope you have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by! It's going to be another scorcher here this weekend, a perfect weekend for staying in and sewing.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Farmer's Wife Sew Along- Day Two . . .

My plan of devoting one day a month to my Farmer's Wife blocks is working out great. I"ll probably always be behind the group, especially since I got a late start, but maybe I'll have a super productive day every now and then and be able to crank out more than 6 blocks.

So here are my latest blocks, I'm doing them in order,

Blocks Seven and Eight

Blocks Nine and Ten

And blocks Eleven and Twelve.

This is the red fabric I plan to use for my sashing and here's all my blocks so far. (I've GOT to get that handle on that basket!!)

I'm pretty much loving every single block.

Just in case you're new to my blog, I'm using French General fabric by Kaari Meng for Moda and am shrinking my blocks down to 4 inches instead of 6 inches as in the book.

Red and White Quilt update, those school house blocks are pesky, I still love them, but they're pesky, hopefully I'll have pictures of some progress later this week.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Another Red & White Tribute Quilt Update . . .

So the last time I blogged about my tribute quilt to the Infinite Variety Three Centuries of Red and White Quilts Show, held in New York this spring, I was working on snowballs.

The Red and White Quilt show had several snowball quilts but two caught my eye,

this one, because I liked the border and LOVED the quilting. This was quilt 200 and hung in the interior bottom of Pavilion 5.

And this one,

see how the quilter took one 9 patch block and swapped the position of the red and white fabric to make that little interesting design in the top right part of the quilt. I just love that little something something. Not that I could EVER do anything like that, just a little out of my comfort zone. I would be too afraid everyone who looked at my quilt would say, "Did you notice Thelma made a mistake in her quilt!"

This is quilt 304 and hung in the exterior top of Pavilion 13.

Here's my snowball tribute quilt.

It finished at 24 1/2" x 27 1/2" and has 451 pieces with 3 " blocks.

Here's where I am right now, 4 mini quilts for a total of 1,640 pieces.

I need to change up some sizes on my next few quilts to give the impression of depth.

I know this project just must have some log cabin blocks and am thinking some little ones would maybe look good between some of the mini quilts.

This one finished at 2 5/8". I think it's an adorable block but am not sure I'm up for making 100 of them!
I would love to have this quilt done by the end of the month, yes THIS month. I'm not coming out and actually saying it's a goal, but it sure would be nice.

Here's what's next. . . .

a few of these school house blocks, I'm thinking mine need to be around 4 1/2 inches. Don't you just love the vintage feel of these blocks? This a block I don't see in new patterns at all, I think it's the perfect project to work on while I make up my mind about those log cabin blocks.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend, it's going to be a typical July weekend here, which translates into meals of nothing but salads and sandwiches, it's too hot to cook! Thankfully it's never too hot to sew!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Evening Bloom - Block 4 . . . .

In addition to working on a few Farmer's Wife blocks and my Red and White Tribute Quilt, I've also been plugging away on Block 4 of Evening Bloom.

For those of you new to my blog, Evening Bloom is a wonderful pattern by Blackbird Designs. It is one of the quilts featured in their book Country Inn.

This is my first hand applique project, and even though this block took a little bit longer than my goal of one month, whenever I did have time to work on it, I enjoyed it.

So here we go,

Finally, in full bloom! This is my favorite block so far.
Each block is 24 inches.

I'm working on Evening Bloom with a friend, and we meet once a month to admire our finished blocks, plot our strategy for the next block, drink coffee and just talk about any quilty topic we can think of. It's always a fun way to celebrate a finish and really keeps me motivated and focussed to try and complete my block on time.

Here are our blocks together.

Our goal is to have this quilt all done by the end of the year, I think we can do it, 4 blocks done with only 5 more to go.