Apr 29

Craftsy Supplies Sale

Yes, this post is an ad.

This weekend you can find top kits and supplies for your craft at BIG savings on Craftsy. Explore fresh picks from your favorite brands and designers, and enjoy exceptional prices. But don’t wait –– just like spring, this offer won’t last long. Deal ends Sunday!

Quilt on!

Apr 28

A Time with Lots of Learning

I have apparently entered a season which will include a lot of learning of new things. I may be exhausted before summer ever gets here!

First off, I spent three days last week at the EQ7 Academy in Perrysburg, Ohio, learning how to use EQ7 from the wonderful and talented Christa Watson. For me, this was absolutely the best way to learn EQ7 and have it stick. Three days totally devoted to it. (Neck and shoulder massages might have been very useful at the end of each day though.) Here is one of the quilts I designed during this intensive class.

13072743_10102870047299304_7426209817573959526_oYes, this is more modern than I would normally make, but it was fun to design. Yes, using EQ7 is fun. And if you are interested, the next EQ7 Academy is in Denver in September. For more information, click the EQ7 Academy link above.

The next two things on my plate to learn are making covered cording to use as piping (and then using it as piping) and using the Inklingo patterns I’ve purchased so I can get started using La Passacaglia as my handwork whenever I’m driving my DH somewhere and waiting for him.

I hope to have done the covered cording and binding in time to take it to my daughter’s on Saturday when we go over there to dogsit.

What new things are you learning?

Quilt on!

Apr 25

Books on Monday – Cathedral Window Quilts

It’s the fourth Monday in April and time again for Books on Monday. This time we are looking at Cathedral Window Quilts: The Classic Folded Technique and a Wealth of Variations by Lynne Edwards. The link below is, of course, Amazon Affiliate links which will provide a bit of money to help support the blog, things like domain name purchase and hosting fees.

The first church quilt I participated in was a Cathedral Window quilt with Christmas fabrics as the centers. We made a twin sized quilt and then used leftover blocks to make two Christmas tree skirts, one of which I own. Here’s  a close-up of the center of the quilt:

Christmas Cathedral Windows. The first quilt (and two Christmas tree skirts) with which I had any involvement. – Version 2Cathedral Window quilts are very heavy and do not technically have three layers or quilting as we know it, but they are pretty.

My new favorite quilting magazine is Today’s Quilter, and I learned of this book through this magazine. I have long considered making a Cathedral Window quilt of my own, so, of course, I had to have this book.

It is more than worth the purchase price. The directions for making a Cathedral Window quilt are thorough and more easy to understand than many I have seen in the past. Lynne Edwards also includes directions for using a machine for some of the steps to speed up the process if you’re interested in that. She also includes directions for several variation blocks, which I am currently very excited by!

Her designed quilts are gorgeous and, in addition to directions on how to make them, she includes tips for designing your own quilts of this type. She uses batiks in many of her quilts as the background fabric, which I want to try, although I wonder about hand sewing through closely woven batiks. But you can bet I’m going to try it!

Here is what is included in this wonderful book:

  • Introduction
  • Fabrics for Cathedral Window
  • Equipment and Techniques
  • Part 1 Classic Cathedral Window – includes some rectangular versions
  • Part 2 Keep on Folding – other folded block techniques
  • Finishing Techniques
  • About the Author
  • Dedications
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index

If you are interested in making Cathedral Window quilts, I highly recommend this book!

Quilt on!

 

Apr 18

Long Overdue Blog Post

This post is long overdue. I meant to write about this last summer and somehow got sidetracked. How rude!

You may remember that last summer I purchased an awesome sewing/quilting/embroidery machine even though I’d never done any machine embroidery and I’m not 100% sure when I’ll start. My amazing and generous friend Katie (of Katie’s Quilting Corner fame) generously sent me a box filled with necessities to get me started. I’ve meant to show you pictures so you could appreciate the magnitude of this gift! Here they are!

The picture below shows plenty of stabilizers and a set of needles and two design disks.

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And then there was all this thread! Some of it is brand new! I am going to have some fun with this!IMG_3889

Thank you so much, Katie! I really am going to use this stuff. Soon now. Very soon.

Quilt on!

Apr 13

First Second Quarter Finish

Yep. Sunday night I finished the Christmas Table Runner. This one has been kicking around for a long time and I had been thinking about using it to practice free motion quilting, but I reallly wanted to have one more finished UFO for my LQS’s UFO contest. So, I tried out my dual feed foot instead.

This table runner first showed up in one of my earliest posts, where I called it a fail and then was gently and kindly reminded by another blogger of how I should be putting it together! Sigh. I responded in this post and then announced the table runner top’s completion in this post. All of these were originally posted when I still used Blogger, but I know they were sometime in 2010. Yes, this table runner has been around that long! And, seriously, how long should it take to layer and baste and quilt a table runner?

So Saturday, as part of my distraction from cleaning and organizing the quilting area (more about that in a future post), I layered, basted and quilted this puppy. As previously mentioned, I used my machine’s dual feed foot for the first time and liked the results quite a bit better than without it so I’ll be happily using it in the future.

I also did a machine binding for the second time in my life, and I am not happy with it. Yes, I could take it off and rebind, but I wanted this done and it is. Maybe in the future I’ll do that and sew the back on and then the front with a decorative stitch, but I’m not sure about that either.

As you can see from the picture, this is a bit wavy but only a small bit and it’s for me. Really, I just wanted to get this one done, and now it is!

IMG_3890Quilt on!

Apr 11

Books on Monday – Happy Endings

It’s the second Monday of April so it’s Books on Monday time. Today we are looking at an older book, one I’ve owned since 2009, before I ever even considered blogging. Today we are looking at Happy Endings: Finishing the Edges of Your Quilt by Mimi Dietrich. It is available in both paperback and Kindle versions so the links to both are below. (Yes, Amazon Affiliate links. Clicking them to purchase will help to support the blog.)

I purchased this book, as I previously mentioned, in 2009. I was a newish (about 5 years) quilter and thought this would come in very handy. I read through it and placed it on my quilting bookshelf. It was brought to my mind again last week when I asked for help choosing a binding color for my hearts quilt on Twitter and Facebook. My friend Carole replied she had a book I might like to see before I made a decision and about 15 minutes later she was at my house with the book. I took one look at it and realized that I already had this book. Not only that, but I had taken the Craftsy class with the same information. (Finishing Schools: Edges & Bindings, Mimi Dietrich is the name of the class and yes that is a link that will also help to support this blog.) It is among my favorite classes on Craftsy. I highly recommend it.

Back to the book itself – this is a must have book for anyone wanting to vary and improve their finishing techniques. It covers borders, quilting, and finishing the edges of your quilt. (Nope, it’s not all finishing the edges with binding!) Here are the contents:

  • A Happy Ending – by the founder of Martingale
  • Choosing a Happy Ending for Your Quilt
  • Border and Binding Terms
  • Tools and Supplies
  • Basic Border Techniques
  • Getting Ready to Quilt
  • Finishing Edges without Binding
  • Finishing Edges with Backing
  • Finishing Edges with Binding
  • Finishing Edges with Special Techniques
  • Final Touches
  • Stitching Guide
  • Index
  • About the Author

Yes, this is one highly recommended book. I wonder what other books I have in my basement that I should be reviewing.

Quilt on!

Apr 09

Q2 Finish-a-long Goals

This is my official post for the second quarter goals and I will be linking it up with the 2016 Finish-A-Long page at Rhonda’s Ramblings.

This was pretty easy since I really only finished one of my Q1 Goals. I just added a little something for this month – an easy almost guaranteed finish. Here’s my whiteboard:

IMG_3570 2In case you are having trouble reading it, here is the list omitting the checked off (and finished!!!!) crazy quilt:

  1. Scrap in a Box (piece backing, layer, baste, quilt, bind)
  2. Christmas table runner (layer, baste, quilt, bind) – I’m actually hoping to complete this this weekend.
  3. Was the completed crazy quilt
  4. 2012 FQS Designer Mystery BOM (assemble top, layer, baste, send out for quilting, bind)
  5. Heart Quilt – bind

I’m hoping that this is actually what I do this quarter. Numbers 2 & 5 should be completed within the next couple of weeks. Stay tuned.

Quilt on!

Mar 31

First Quarter Finish

Yep, that was a singular finish. After all my plans of finishing four items, all I got done was one. I still need to wash it, but I have finally finished the machine quilted crazy quilt that I call Mrs. B’s quilt because the top was made by a friend’s mother.

Here are some pictures of the front. I’m not sure if the borders were originally wavy or if the embroidery stitches I used to do the quilting shrunk the size of the inside enough to make the borders seem wavy. Whatever the case, this is not a perfectly flat quilt.

IMG_3873 IMG_3874

Here are a couple of pictures of the back. IMG_3875 IMG_3876And here are a couple of closeups of some of the blocks.

IMG_3677 IMG_3852 IMG_3829I completed this quilt because my friend’s mother (who I’m not sure ever made another quilt) donated it to be finished and put into our church auction. This quilt came to me already layered with fusible batting and the edges totally trimmed. Unfortunately, I had to trim some of the border fabric off because in a couple places the backing didn’t go all the way to the edge. There was also a hanging sleeve already attached, which I ultimately had to remove because of the necessary trimming. (And I don’t know for sure that all of the fabrics are 100% cotton.)

I’m not happy with some of my choices in the quilting. I should have either planned the order of the thread colors before starting the quilting or just used one color. I’m also not sure that I should have used the dark purple thread, but it’s there now. And as far as no consistent pattern for the use of thread colors, it’s a crazy quilt. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

I’m linking up with the 2016 Finish-a-long (see the button in my sidebar) at Rhonda’s Ramblings.

Quilt on.

Mar 28

Books on Monday – Block A Day

It’s the fourth Monday in March, so it is time for Books on Monday! Today we are looking at Block A Day: 365 Quilting Squares for Patchwork Inspiration! by Lucinda Ganderton. (Yes, that is an Amazon Affiliate link and yes, using it to purchase this book will help support this blog.)

Yes, this book is exactly what it sounds like, a collection of 365 blocks and the directions and templates for making them. I think this would be a good book for a beginner (or at least close to the beginning of a person’s quilting career), because there is a variety of quilt blocks and techniques and a very good introductory section. It is also a spiral bound book, which has a definite upside. Here’s a list of what is in this book:

  • Introduction
  • How the Book Works
  • Quilting Fabrics (which has a brief section on color)
  • Tools and Equipment
  • Cutting Out the Patches
  • Rotary Units
  • Sewing the Blocks together
  • The Patterns (Finished blocks are 12″ x 12″ and directions are given for both rotary and template cutting for each block. 12″ is a little larger than I usually like to work with, but resizing can happen.)
  • Templates
  • Index
  • Author Biography and Acknowledgments

I had a brief moment when this book first arrived of wanting to do one of every block, but then I remembered how quickly I got tired of doing that with , and I thought better of pretending to commit to such a big job.

I suggest buying yourself a copy or buying one for your closest newbie quilter who wants to design her/his own quilts and likes the idea of samplers.

Quilt on!

Mar 27

Happy Easter!

This is the strangest Easter in years since we are not home an are not going to church. We are dogsitting this gorgeous guy:

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Because he misses his mommy so much, our method of dogsitting includes never leaving him alone while we are here. So, no church for us.

Part of visiting his mommy includes visiting and sleeping under this quilt:

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I don’t usually sleep under a quilt that I’ve made because I haven’t yet made one for our bed. Maybe I should get on it!

I found my needlework bag a few weeks ago and took stock of what is in it. (This was part of the realization that I’m almost done hand piecing my BOMs – at least the ones that I was hand piecing.) Here’s some of what I found:

Jacobean Sampler – This one is unfinished mostly because I really don’t like embroidery. It came from a company called The Creative Circle that sold kits during home parties. I fell in love with the sampler, and I did start it. One of the reasons I quit was that I thought my satin stitch looked pretty bad. I was pleasantly surprised that I don’t still feel that way.

IMG_3870

Next up are a couple of counted cross stitch items. The first is a Christmas cross stitch which still needs lots of work:

IMG_3869Next up is an alphabet that I started with the idea that I’d give it to the baby my sister was expecting and no one would expect me to knit the official Christmas stocking. (When my sister was expecting her first, my mom was very ill and asked me pointedly who would knit the baby’s stocking. I actually had to take it over to her house and knit in front of her to prove I was doing it. There’s a family pattern that is involved. My nephew’s is the biggest of all the stockings. For second nephew and second daughter, I hired it done. Carolyn kindly knitted my son-in-law’s stocking and is lined up for any grandchildren who come along.)

Anyhow, said nephew turns 29 next month. When I realized that I wasn’t going to finish it in a very timely manner, I put it away. Then I found out I was expecting and did a little more on it, but that baby just turned 28 so…

I misremembered how much I had gotten done and was pleasantly surprised to see that it was this much:

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Sure, I have the rest of the alphabet to do, but this was about three letters more than I thought I had done! This may well become a quilt someday.

I’m hoping to complete block 12 of the 2011 Designer Mystery BOM today, so this may well be relevant very soon.

Quilt on!

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