Saturday, April 24, 2010

From Flowers to Fish Fins

I am working on McKenna Ryan's latest: Lake Forrest. It never ceases to amaze me what she sees in her fabrics. Who looks at a flower (or designs a flower in a fabric line) and thinks "Hey, this looks like fish fins".

This is just one example, she does this over and over. I have made several of her patterns, they look so difficult but her patterns are great and explain the process well. The fun is after you trace and cut the individual applique pieces you audition it on several areas of the fabric to get just the right look. Her patterns are the one quilts I do with the suggested fabrics by the designer. I usually buy from an online store called Batiks Plus, they kit all of McKenna Ryan's patterns with Hoffman Batiks and include very generous cuts of the fabric so you have plenty of room to do this "auditioning".

I always like when some of the applique in one block spills into the next block or the border and this will happen in a couple areas of this quilt.

I am up to the last block and I am off to find just the right spot to cut out a beaver body from some fabric that looks like tree bark.

Happy Stitching all...


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Picnic Quilt & Another CWBQ Block Completed

I have the picnic quilt finished and on the way to its new owner. It turned out so good, I want to go on a picnic with it.

I usually can not finish a quilt this fast, but I had started the center years ago for another project that really did not turn out the way I planned. All I had to do for this quilt was add the pinwheel border blocks and quilt it. It finished at 72 X 72 inches, a good size for a picnic. Kazumi - I quilted your name in the corner by the purple and green pinwheel block, look for it.

I also have another Civil War Bride Quilt block completed. It is my third block finished and the second block in the quilt.

It is the rather empty block that sits to the right of the bride and was thought to be the space for the groom in the original quilt top at the New York Folk Art Museum. The leaf on the bottom left side is folded back and will go into the next block when they are sewn together. I am still enjoying the back basting method of applique, I do need to work on smoother curves. I did learn a great tip while working on this block: Paint the seam allowance with clear fingernail polish on the inside points to prevent fraying. Fray Check works as well, but spreads onto the main applique piece and seems so much wetter and best of all the fingernail polish was only 99 cents at Walmart. So far I am doing a block a month, I am on to number four.

Happy Stitching All...


Sunday, April 18, 2010

A Whole Lot of Quilting Going On

I had a weekend I could almost completely dedicate to sewing and I got so much accomplished on the picnic quilt. The borders were added and the quilting finished - Yea! I was going to put some feathered wreaths in the big blank blocks but I thought "it is going to be used for picnics". Well, I just happened to have a stencil with dragonflies, bumblebees and butterflies. I scattered them in the blank areas and did a big loopey stipple around them. The binding is sewn on and I am hand sewing it down, it just needs a label and it will be done!
I have really "buzzed" thru this quilt.
Happy Stitching all...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Little Side Job

Somewhere in my quilting history a friend asked me to make her daughter a table runner, another a baby quilt, another a T-shirt quilt. Over time it has turned into a very informal part time business. I am always surprised when someone asks me to make them a quilt, and always feel that the current one will probably be the last one ever and then another one comes along.

My daughter - in - law has a friend who asked if I would make her a quilt to use as a picnic blanket. She asked if I had any 1930s fabric. My friends are laughing here because I have baskets of Aunt Gracie fabrics, I have a guest bedroom referred to as the Aunt Grace room because of it's quilts from 1930s/feed sack type fabric. I also just happened to have a quilt top started using this fabric that never really turned into anything. It has wonderful big blank areas for quilting something fun.

This morning I am working on the remaining pinwheel blocks for the quilt border. I enjoy getting back to the basics of piecing: half square triangles, chain stitching, squaring up the blocks.

Happy Stitching all...


Friday, April 9, 2010

Cutest Grandbaby in the World is in Town

After a year of preparation this weekend is it - my daughter is getting married. We are all ready and just enjoying all the friends and family including my son, daughter -in-law, and only grandchild who are here for the occasion. I find myself with a peaceful hour or so before rehersal dinner, everybody is off doing their own thing and getting ready. I am reading emails and thought I would post a couple pictures. The weather is beautiful and this mother of the bride is completely calm and stress free.

Happy Stitching...


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

I'm still here

I still want to get this blog started, I am trying to figure out how to add a side bar to list the quilts I am working on but I have not got it the way I want yet. I also need to get better at taking pictures as I work, but I am going to dedicate myself to this project. I love to read other quilters blogs and I want to journal what I am doing.
In the mean time work is progressing on the CWBQ, I have finished my third block - which is block 2 - but have to take pictures of it. I am now working on block 1 in the quilt. I also finished a small tablerunner that I received in a gift exchange at my small groups annual quilt retreat. This tablerunner was from Cathy and had the cutest fabric in it. It looks very good on my coffee table. The basket on the quilt was my daughter's good idea. I wanted something decorative on the coffee table but yet something that the cutest grandbaby in the world would not get into trouble for playing with. Smart daughter said to toss all the wine corks I save into a wire basket - TA DAH. I have been saving corks for quite a while, on special occasions we like to date and initial them I just didn't know what to do with them. Too Cute.

Well, that is all for today. Spring is coming to the midwest, I see a bright yellow bush blossoming in my neighbors yard. Yea Spring!
Happy Stitching...