Monday, July 27, 2020

Salute to the Red, White and Blue . . .

Memorial Weekend I was inspired to piece a new quilt for my July quilt parade.  There are so many amazing stars and stripes quilt patterns out there I had a hard time deciding what to make, so I made two.

First up is Betsy Ross.


This is Lifetime Quilt Number 283
The pattern, Betsy Ross, is by Katie Malan Designs.  (available here
My version finished at 52" by 64"
It has approximately 285 pieces

I added an extra row of white fabric on the bottom of the pattern to better fit the space where I planned to hang it. I think the red binding pulls it all together just fine. 

Abby at Latimer Lane Quilting finished it up beautifully with wavy lines.   



The blue fabric is by Bonnie and Camille for Moda and was from their Happy Go Lucky line, I bought a bolt of that blue dot fabric and have used it in so many of my Bonnie and Camille projects. 


The red is another Bonnie and Camille print, Little Ruby, I didn't buy a bolt of this one but should have, you know me and red!


The second top that I pieced is Stars and Stripes, a free Missiouri Star pattern.


This is Lifetime Quilt Number 284
The pattern is Stars and Stripes by Missouri Star Quilt Co (available here)
My version finished at 54" x 64"
The fabric is all Bonnie and Camille for Moda
It has approximately 240 pieces

We used wavy lines for this quilt too, my go to for patriotic themed quilts.

The Missouri Star pattern used 11" star blocks, I thought that was an odd size, given the strips finish at 2", so I pieced 10" stars instead.  Most people would probably never notice the stars not lining up symmetrically with the stripes in the original pattern. It's all even Steven, debits equals credits happening in my brain all the time, so it was a simple swap.  I like the way it looks, and my brain is happy.



Both patterns were easy, I had them pieced and off to Abby  in less than a week and back just in time for the 4th of July and my July quilt parade.  I'll be sad to pack them up at the end of the month.






Saturday, July 25, 2020

Red and White Bow Tie Quilt

Every year I piece at least one red and white quilt to add to my red and white quilt collection.  For 2020 I decided to piece a traditional quilt block, the good old bow tie block.



My bow tie blocks finish at 4 inches


I decided 100 was a nice even number of blocks and added a wide border to showcase them.



This is Lifetime Quilt Number 282
I've named it Red and White Bow Tie
The bow tie blocks finish at 4 inches
The white border is 8 inches 
The red fabric is Moda Bella Solid Christmas Red 9900-16 and the white fabric is Moda Bella Solid 9900-98 Bleached White
It finished at 56" x 56"
It has approximately 604 pieces
I think it's my 16th red and white quilt finish, maybe I should name it Sweet Sixteen.


Friday, March 27, 2020

HST Palooza . . . .


I have to admit to being a little pleasantly surprised by this finish.  I had no vision, pattern or even much direction when I started piecing this quilt top.  I just knew I was in the mood to make blocks made up of 16 half square triangles using only two pieces of fabric, I started with large blocks first.  Size didn't really matter, in the beginning, I just made pleasing looking blocks and threw them on my design wall.  As I progressed I had to adjust sizes to fit the holes.

This is Lifetime Quilt Number 287
I've named it Only HSTs Need Apply
It finished at 72" x 72", my favorite size
The vast majority of the fabric is by Sherri and Chelsi for Moda
It has approximately 2,338 pieces.
The largest block is 18", the smallest is 4", there are 72 sixteen hst blocks. 


My goal was to fill the top with nothing but 16 hst block squares, and I did get close, but I refused to make hsts with measurements smaller than 1/4" or blocks smaller than 4", so I did need to fill in 5 places with just a row of hsts.  Now that it's done I think maybe the top would have been more interesting if I had added more random hsts to the mix, maybe next time.


Out of the 72 blocks I pieced 4 did not make the cut, not a bad average.  The block in the upper left annoyed me the entire time it was on my design wall.  I like the pattern and the fabric combo but in the end I think it's the granny roses in that print that did not appeal to me.  I'm a very picky floral person, it's a shame because when I was piecing it I was focussing on the butterflies, which I liked,  but after it was pieced all I saw were those blooms.  Upper right just didn't pop, the green was too muted, I like the fabric and the pattern but it just got lost with the other colors when it was on my design wall.  Lower left, I like the fabric but not the fabric combo and lower right, that block is 4 1/2" and I just couldn't live with the lack of cohesiveness with the fabric, it just doesn't match up well, looks sloppy.

I have not been able to concentrate while in my sewing room these last two weeks.  That's a very unusual occurrence for me, my sewing room is my happy place and I did enjoy piecing all these blocks, but some days I was lucky to piece just one block.  My husband is working from home, and does have his own office, but it still throws off the rhythm of the house and my routine.  I'm hoping next week will be better, or he'll go back to the office, either works for me.  SANTY NOW, please.

My heart breaks daily with all the sad news being reported, my thoughts are with the healthcare workers and other folks doing their jobs to keep us fed and safe, and of course prayers to all the people infected with the virus.  I'm cutting myself some slack on my lack of productivity, being kind to others starts with me.  Please be kind to yourself too, and be safe.


Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Winterberry

I've made some progress on my goal of making some winter themed quilts this year and I think this may be the last one, for now at least, Spring is just around the corner and I'm ready to play with some colors.


This is Lifetime Quilt Number 276
The pattern is Winterberry by Erica Arndt for Erica Made Designs.  
It finished at 65" x 71"
It has approximately 1,372 pieces
The fabric is my go to red and white, Moda Bella Solids, 9900-16 Christmas Red and 9900-98 White.


The mitten blocks were quite a challenge for me.


It took me several attempts to get enough pieces to align how I liked.  I've made this block before and don't remember the struggle.  The directions were perfect, it's not the pattern, it was me.




But now that's it's all put together I'm feeling much better about the whole project.



The pattern is available here.

A couple of weeks ago I visited a girlfriend in Arizona, she took me to a pottery shop where I fell in love with all the bright colors used in the wares, I'm planning to jump start my spring inside by working with the same color palette. I think a simple 16 block hst sampler will be a fun and easy project after Winterberry, no more mittens for me!

Monday, February 10, 2020

Memories of a Masterpiece

The first of every month I swap out the majority of the quilts that are out and about in my home.  The beds, a few walls, the banister, the loft, they all get a new look.  I have some quilts that get used year round and are always out, Cooper has two.  It's a fun day and I look forward to it.  But I only piece the tops, I don't quilt them, and without the help and support of some amazing quilters there would be no quilts to play with each month, a fact I never take for granted.


This month I've really been enjoying Memories of a Masterpiece on the guest bed.  I was piecing this quilt this time last year, and now here it is all quilted and looking amazing.


Linda Hrcka at The Quilted Pineapple quilted this top for me.  Whenever I send a quilt off to be quilted, regardless of the quilt, I only have two words of advice, "no feathers".  Linda thought perhaps I should break my no feathers rule and she was right.  The design and size are perfect for this top.  


It only takes looking at this before picture to really appreciate the the difference quilting makes.

Linda is blogging about quilting this top on her blog today, pop on over to get her take on quilting this top.

This is Memories of a Masterpiece, Lifetime Quilt #243, click here for more detail.