Another Catch Up Day

I feel like I’ve been very absent from blogging and social media lately. Sigh. Somehow life has seemed kind of draining lately. Maybe that is because we seem to have had several major changes going on and the fact that it is crunch time on the church quilt. Sigh. Life.

Anyway, be that as it may, I have been making a bit of progress on the big monkey and the Disappearing Pinwheel blocks.  Here is one Disappearing Pinwheel block and two more from the big monkey.

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Here’s a close-up of the Disappearing Pinwheel because I love the fabric.

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I also finished Block 7 of the 2011 Designer Mystery BOM.

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Then I got impatient with cutting the DPWs to sew together with the big monkey setting triangles as leaders and enders, so I just put the triangles on the last 6 blocks to get it over with.

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Next step for the big monkey is cutting the sashing and sashing star pieces. I think life will need to be a little bit less hectic before I tackle that because we all know how much I do not like cutting. Hopefully, that will happen soon and I can get at least the top finished before the end of the year.

What have you been up to?

Quilt on!

Books on Monday – Mini-Mosaic Quilts

Today we are looking at Mini-Mosaic Quilts: 30+ Block Designs 14 Projects Easy Piecing Technique by Paula Doyle. (Warning: the link below is an Amazon Associate link which will help support this blog if you click on it.)

You know how much I like blocks with little pieces? Well, this book scares me. (You did see the word “mini” in the title, right?) Once I have finished up some UFOs and WIPs, I really have to try some of these techniques and patterns. I have not tried these techniques yet, so, although they look good to me, I can’t really attest to how well they work to produce awesome tiny pieces and blocks. However, I plan to try them so I will probably post about it later.

Paula Doyle explains her techniques clearly in her instructions and has tips scattered throughout the book. There are plenty of illustrations accompanying the directions.

I love and hope to make many of the projects in this book! Unfortunately, Amazon does not have a Look Inside for this book, so you can’t see them. I am expecially enamored of the badge holder and hope to make one before my next use of a badge.

Here is what the table of contents contains:

  • Introduction
  • Making the Mini-Mosaic Fabric Tiles
  • Making the Mini-Mosaic
  • Little Tile Mini-Mosaic Projects and Patterns
  • Big Tile Mini-Mosaic Projects and Patterns
  • Projects Continued
  • Afterthoughts
  • About the Author

 Quilt on!

Books on Monday – Holly Jolly

This one isn’t so much a book as it is a collection of patterns – Christmas related, as you may have guessed by the title. It’s Holly Jolly by Sherri K. Falls. (Amazon gives it a subtitle, but I don’t see any evidence of that subtitle on the book itself so I didn’t include it here.)

According to Amazon, there is only one copy available, but I know you can get this book at Connecting Threads if Amazon doesn’t have it. Or you can get it from Sherri K. Falls’s website This & That.

So why am I writing a review of a book that is only a collection of patterns for Christmas? Well, Christmas is coming and some of these patterns are irresistible. (That is how I ended up buying this book in the first place! I fought it for a long time but the cover quilt just pulled me in.)

The book is self-published as far as I can tell and it begins with a set of General Directions. These are good directions, but they are not meant for total rookies. Then the book starts right into the patterns on black and white pages, but there is a four page color section with pictures of the projects. My very favorite is the cover quilt, Sweet Scandinavian. I can also see myself making (maybe – no promises here) the table runners, Chance of Snow and Christmas Bouquet, and the quilts, Winter Winds and Christmas Pines. There is also a hexie Christmas tree skirt called Oh Christmas Tree that I might have considered if I were planning to ever make any more Christmas tree skirts. I count 17 projects in all here, kind of something for everyone.

So if you are looking for some Christmas projects (and who isn’t?), this might be a good choice!

Quilt on!

Working on a Huge Monkey

This is just a brief post to show you what I’ve been working on over the last few hours. Hopefully I will get this post finished before the arrival of the women to hand quilt the church quilt.

I have been working on some (okay 2) Disappearing Pinwheel blocks and adding setting triangles to the American Beauty Block of the Month (AKA Quilting Monkey #1) blocks.

Here’s the first pink houndstooth DPW with its corresponding BOM friends:

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And the second pink houndstooth DPW with its friends:IMG_2364

Because I had to step farther away to get the pictures of the whole gang, they are much darker. Maybe I need to light the design wall better.  Here’s the best of them.

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And here’s a sad truth. There should be one red houndstooth DPW but when making the next to last cut, I veered off into space. Sigh.

Get used to seeing pink, black and green on this blog. I am determined to finish the American Beauty BOM by the end of the year or die trying!

Quilt on!

Books on Monday – Beyond Neutral

Today we are looking at Beyond Neutral: Quilts Inspired by Nature’s Elements by John Q. Adams, AKA Quilt Dad. As usual, the link below is an Amazon associate link which could help support this blog if you so choose. It is certainly worth looking on Amazon.com because the Look Inside feature gives you a good look at some of the quilt patterns in this book.

Let me start this by saying this is a book of beautiful modern quilt patterns. And, yes, there are a few I may want to make someday even though I really do not consider myself a modern quilter by most definitions. Okay, now that that is out of the way, lets look at a few specifics.

The book is divided into five main sections corresponding to the different elements of nature that inspired the quilts. Those sections are:

  1. Wind and Sky
  2. Earth
  3. Water
  4. Leaves and Grass
  5. Lava, Coral and Stone

Each section contains 2-4 quilt patterns, and in most cases it is easy to see why the quilts are in the sections they are in. All of the quilts but one are twin or throw sized quilts. The other is double or queenish sized. The quilts in the book are colorful and modern looking (I know I mentioned that before), with large motifs that invite fancier machine quilting than I can do at this time!

Other than the five sections mentioned earlier, this book has an Introduction, Acknowledgments, and About the Author sections. There are no general quilting instructions, but I don’t feel like every quilting book needs that section. There are tips and suggestions within each pattern though, which I always enjoy.

There you have today’s book review! If you are looking for some vibrant modern quilt patterns, I highly suggest this book!

Quilt on!

A Bit More Catching Up

Another finish! That makes 5 since June! I never do this! I usually just start stuff and finish them in dribbles, one or two a year! (The one or two a year are the finishes, not the starts unfortunately!)

This finish was very predictable. It is the Carpenter’s Star Christmas Tree Skirt for my youngest daughter and her husband.

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I am pretty sure I am never making another Christmas tree skirt! Trying to sew the binding around the hole in the middle is not the least bit fun and it didn’t turn out very well either. Also, the greater than 90 degree angles and I did not do as well as I had hoped we would after I watched every video I could find. It might have helped if I hadn’t bound it in the same Fairy Frost as the snow colored parts of the quilt because that is a very thick fabric and a bit tough to manipulate and ease into things.

I will be handing off the two Christmas tree skirts on Friday. Just to remind you how different the tastes of my two daughters is, here is another picture of the eldest daughter’s Christmas tree skirt:

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At the risk of offending either of my daughters (or my son-in-law), I have very different feelings about these two tree skirts. I am very proud of having actually been able to make the Christmas Celebration tree skirt for my eldest daughter. I think it looks elegant and like it was much more difficult to make than it really was. I had fun making my youngest daughter’s and son-in-law’s tree skirt and it makes me smile to look at it. It feels bright, Christmasy and homey to me.

And now, maybe you know whose tastes are more like mine. ;-)

I also completed Block 5 of the 2014 Designer Mystery BOM from the Fat Quarter Shop. I do love these colors!

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And I got a very small start on Quilting Monkey #1 – The American Beauty BOM. Back in April of 2012 I posted about having assembled these setting triangles for the 12 blocks and how I needed to trim them. Last night I trimmed the first two. The template is very slippery so I’m not very excited about doing the rest, but it will make a nice leaders and enders project to sew them onto the blocks.

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Other than that, most of the quilting I’ve been doing is hand quilting the church quilt, which is really not very likely to get finished in time this year. Too much other stuff going on!

How’s your quilting going?

Quilt on!

Books on Monday – Thoroughly Modern Dresden

Today we are looking at another of my acquisitions from the fall C&T Publishing sale. The book we are looking at today is Thoroughly Modern Dresden ● Quick & Easy Construction ● 13 Lively Quilt Projects for All Skill Levels by Anelie Belden. The link below is, as usual, an Amazon Associate link.

When this book arrived, I began looking at it and reading the directions. I was immediately confused by mentions of templates to be used when there was no actual template sheet in the book. After looking closely at the Table of Contents, I realized my book was missing the template sheet. I sent an email to C&T and got a lovely email in return telling me a new copy was on the way. (And I hadn’t even put my address in the email!) I was very impressed with the customer service!

All of the quilts in this book are indeed made of some variation of the Dresden block. Some of the Dresdens are pointed, some straight, some rounded, and some three-sided. I am amazed at how many different styles of quilt are made out of these Dresdens and Dresden blades. And, yes, there are several patterns in this book I want to try.

Let’s look at the contents of this book.

  • Introduction
  • Dresden Beginnings – includes the history of the block and a description of what the author means by skill level.
  • Tools and Supplies
  • Anatomy of the Dresden Design
  • Dresden Blocks and Designs
  • Dresden Block Construction
  • Projects
  • General Quilt Finishing Instructions
  • Dresden Templates – How to make and use them. The actual templates are a pullout in the back of the book.
  • About the Author
  • Resources
  • The Template Patterns Pullout

If you ever want to make a Dresden quilt of any kind, this book will thoroughly prepare you for the experience.

Quilt on!

Blogger’s Quilt Festival Entry #2 – Small Quilt

AmysCreativeSide.com

At 60″ in diameter and (if I’ve done my math correctly) 188.5″ in circumference, “Janni’s Christmas Celebration” tree skirt qualifies as a small quilt, I guess.

IMG_2323Last year about this time, my eldest daughter asked if I would make her a red and gold Christmas tree skirt. We looked online and found the Christmas Celebration pattern by Judy Niemeyer. I will admit to being very nervous and intimidated by this pattern as I’d never made one of her patterns before.

IMG_1442I think that this year’s updated version of this pattern has a different cover, but it’s the same pattern. But back to my story.

I was a little nervous about doing this tiny pointy paper piecing, but the cutting and paper piecing directions provided were amazing. Even the curved piecing was not as scary as I expected it to be.

Here are some pictures I took along the way:

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I got started with the first section (above) and the finished first sections are below.

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Above is the beginning of the curved flying geese sections which did have me a bit worried but once I got going they turned out fine as you can see below.

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  The next few pictures show the sections as I put them together to make the wedges.

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Below are the first two wedges joined together.

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Below is the completed top before I sent it off to be quilted by Crystal of Longarm Lyrics.

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Below is a picture of the beautiful golden swirls that Crystal quilted into the tree skirt. I took the picture from the back because it is easier to see the quilting on the plain backing.

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And here is another shot of the completed tree skirt!

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Name: Janni’s Christmas Celebration
Size: 60″ in diameter
Pattern: Christmas Celebration by Judy Niemeyer
Batting – 100% cotton
Quilting: Machine quilted by Crystal of Longarm Lyrics in swirls.
Quilt on!

Blogger’s Quilt Festival Entry #1 – Hand Quilted

AmysCreativeSide.com

It’s Blogger’s Quilt Festival time! This year I am posting two quilts in the festival. This one is in the hand quilted category.

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Now, if you are a regular reader of this blog, I’m betting you know what quilt this is. Yes, it is the famous Wedding Quilt, renamed “Spotts Sea of Love” upon completion. There’s an entire category on this blog called Wedding Quilt Progress if you really want to delve into its history, but here’s what we used to call the Reader’s Digest Condensed Version.

Our youngest daughter became engaged in mid-December, 2012 and, of course, asked if I would be making a quilt. Duh! By mid-January, she and her fiancé had chosen the pattern and colors for the quilt (the pattern is Aegean Sea by Judy Martin from the book Stellar Quilts). I asked them if they wanted it machine quilted, in which case they could have it by their wedding day, or hand quilted, in which case I guaranteed it by their first anniversary. They told me to do whichever I preferred so hand quilting won!

Star Blocks for wedding quiltThese are the first units assembled for this quilt, the stars for the centers of the super blocks. They are purples and yellows. All the fabric in this quilt are batiks.

IMG_1239Here are some other building blocks of this quilt.

Grand BlockThis is the first completed Super Block. See the other stars hanging around waiting for their turn.

IMG_1280These are the borders.

IMG_1356And here it is as I worked on it in my first hoop. That hoop was kind of flimsy and this very heavy quilt ended up destroying it so I got a different hoop to finish off the quilt.

IMG_1801This is the quilting in the large areas between the superblocks. Otherwise, the quilting is all stitch in the ditch. I wanted to emphasize the Greek Key kind of designs (or square spirals as my son-in-law calls them), because they were one of the reasons the newlyweds chose this pattern.

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It was hard to get good pictures of this quilt. Here it is on my bed, but still not easy to see.

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Here it is with the new owners as quilt holders in the family room (currently the theater room) of their new house. This was taken before the room was painted red and the furniture moved in. The newlyweds moved into their newly purchased home the week after their first anniversary.

Name: Spotts Sea of Love
Size: 90″ X 90″
Pattern: Aegean Sea by Judy Martin from the book Stellar Quilts
Fabric – batiks
Batting – wool
Quilting: In the ditch and some marked straight line and medallion
Quilt on!

Craftsy’s Halloween Flash Sale

Craftsy

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