Blogger’s Quilt Festival – Nephew’s Wedding Quilt

bloggersquilt festival

My first quilt for the Blogger’s Quilt Festival this fall is the quilt that I made for my nephew’s and new niece’s wedding. I guess now that they are officially married I’ll change the name of the quilt to Rob’s and Kristina’s Starfield. The quilt is based on the quilt called Starfield by Felice Regina at Sew Scatterbrained. And by based on, I mean it is the same quilt but with lots of extra white space to bring it up to queen-sized.

When we got the word that Rob and Kristina were planning an October wedding (back at the end of June), I immediately started communicating with them about what kind of quilt they wanted. I sent Kristina a link to my Quilty Gorgeousness Pinterest Board so they (she, really, as these things usually go) could give me an idea of what they liked. She sent me the Starfield picture and another that was all rectangles and squares. I immediately went about finding a pattern for Starfield (I bought it on Craftsy) and trying to decide how to enlarge it to be a queen-sized quilt, because (to me anyway) if you’re making a wedding quilt it should fit on a bed. Just my own quirk.

The first part that I made (in blue with a touch of rose, per Kristina’s request) was the center block. I posted this picture on Facebook without mentioning who it was for or anything. The first person to like it was Kristina. I figured this was a good sign.


Meanwhile, I was trying to decide whether to add more blocks to the quilt or more white space. I forged ahead making the blocks even before I made that decision. The original design has nine blocks so I made those. First up was four of these:


Then came the last four, which were these:


I love all these star blocks! They are so gorgeous. I am not sure I won’t use some of these again in other quilts.

Here are the 9 blocks on the design wall:


I decided that I really liked the idea of more white space rather than more blocks. (I guess somehow I seem to becoming a more modern quilter in my old age.) I figured the easiest way was to add white to all the blocks to make them about 30″ each.  Once I had done that, the top was too big for me to easily photograph it before sending it to Yessant Habetz at Sewing Habit, LLC for longarming. I couldn’t afford the time or cost of custom quilting (and my free motion quilting skills are nonexistent) so I went for a pinwheel vine-looking overall pattern. Here it is (the backing fabric is actually dark blue):


I spent all last weekend binding this baby. Monday was its bath day and there were a few moments of crisis after the first wash when I saw some blue running around some of the stars in spite of using 2 Color Catchers in the wash. I immediately (without drying) threw it back into the laundry with 4 Color Catchers and it came out perfect. What a relief! (The 4 Color Catchers were still pretty blue however!)

Here it is on the chair in the living room before I managed to cram it into a large (what a misnomer!) flat rate priority mail box for its trip to Arizona.


Here it is on the railing where all my quilts pose at one time or another:



But here is the best picture! Here are the newlyweds (the wedding was last night) holding their quilt! (I’m not sure why the lovely Kristina is hiding behind the quilt, but she is a bit shy.)RobandKristinasQuilt

Check out some of the other Blogger’s Quilt Festival Quilts before you

Quilt on!

Quick – Last Saturday’s Update!

I just need to show you what I did last Saturday during the football game (which, admittedly is not much because the game was so exciting I forgot to sew some of the time).

I had made finishing this block take forever with the multiple piecing mistakes I had made. Here’s the one I found last week:

These geese and trapezoid units (all four of them)


should look like thisIMG_3396

and now they do.

Here’s the finished block as it looked finger pressed on the floor.


And here it is nicely pressed on the design wall. The colors are off a bit in this second picture. Maybe the difference between the Ott light upstairs and the flourescent tube lights in the basement.


Today instead of starting the next block in the 2012 Designer Mystery BOM, I’ll be hand stitching the binding on my nephew’s wedding quilt. I got it back from the longarmer yesterday. Look how gorgeous the quilting looks on the back of it!


And the backing is darkest blue, not the charcoaly color it looks like here!

Okay, I’m off to get back to binding!

Quilt on!

Update Before Football Sewing – and a Craftsy Sale

First, I’ll update you on my quilting progress. Then I’ll tell you about the Craftsy sale, which makes the last part of this post and advertisement. Now you’ve been warned.

I did get the wedding quilt top finished in time to get it to the quilt shop by Tuesday when the longarmers pick up the quilts for quilting. Of course, I had to stay up until about 2:00 AM to accomplish that. Unfortunately, I did not get a picture because I couldn’t find a spot to lay it out (all 90″ of it!) and get a picture. Imagine the image below with lots more white space.


Needless to say, after that late night I was not good for much for the next couple of days. Well, I did finish the book that I needed to return to the library. Other than that, only the hand quilting on the church quilt as far as sewing and fabric. (Unless you count doing laundry as dealing with fabric, that is!)

Last night I made a secret project block. Today I made another. No pictures because….SECRET.

During football sewing today I plan to finish the block I’ve been working on for the last two weeks. Once that is done, I’ll start block 10 of the 2012 Designer Mystery BOM.

Future machine sewing plans include catching up with the Jinny Beyer BOM and finishing the 2014 Designer Mystery BOM. I only have three blocks of the 2014 to cut and sew. I already cut the finishing kit for that one. The Jinny Beyer, AKA 2015 Craftsy BOM, looks intimidating but only because of the appliqué. I’ll get over it.

I also need to finish Scrap in a Box. I think I’m two borders away from completing that top.

I also want to start working my way through the lessons in the Anita Goodesign book to learn more about machine embroidery. I am determined to learn to use my machine for that.

Okay, I do remember that I haven’t shown all the goodies that Katie sent me. I will, I promise. I just need to do some major cleaning in my sewing area. (AKA, the entire family room.) Especially since I have somehow misplaced one of the 2011 Designer Mystery BOM. I haven’t actually figured out which one yet, but whenever I count, I’m one short. I assume it is somewhere in the family room so it’s not a crisis, but it does require family room cleaning and organization. Sigh.


Now a reminder (because I am assuming you may have heard about it elsewhere) that Craftsy is having a ‘Pre-Holiday Stock Up Sale‘ with up to 70% off all supplies! (If you use the link, my Craftsy Affiliate account will get the credit for the sale and you will be helping fund this blog. Now you’ve been warned.) This includes project kits, yarn, fabric, art supplies, cake decorating / baking supplies and paper craft supplies. The sale runs from now through 10/13 @11:59pm MT. I’m still fighting the urge. I have my eye on the Christmas Checkers quilt kit using the Winter’s Grandeur fabric line. I shouldn’t but I do.

As for you,

Quilt on!


Sunday Sewing Update

Here is the rest of the update for the weekend.

After church, I attended a birthday party for which I had made a gift yesterday. I made my first ever bowl cozy. No one at the party had ever heard of them before, so they were quite interested. Here’s a picture:


At the party we did some pallet stencil painting. Note that the real color of my background is more of an aqua or light teal than a green.


Once I got home it was time for some piecing. Look at the lovely warning my machine gave me.


I finished the last four blocks for my nephew’s wedding quilt. I’m pretty sure my niece-to-be is more excited than he is. I’m sorry that we won’t make it out to Arizona for the wedding though.IMG_3384

Here is a picture of all nine blocks:IMG_3385

The next step is to make all of the blocks 30″ (unfinished) by adding white around the blocks, like this:


One down, eight to go. I’m hoping to get the top together and the backing pressed in time to get this to the quilt shop by Tuesday pick up by the longarmer.

And now you’re caught up on all my weekend quilting!

Quilt on!

Saturday Sewing Update

Look, I’m posting this early! (Well, at least earlier than the last couple of weeks.) Yay me!

During Football Sewing today, I did not complete Block 10 of the 2011 Designer Mystery BOM, but I did get most of the units done. All I’ll need to do next time I’m hand piecing is join the units into rows and the rows into the block.

First I fixed the mistake I found in last week’s sewing. This was the first mistake I made:


Then I made it even worse by sewing it into this unit:


So I did some unsewing and then made this (it looks quite a bit brighter than the other version):


Then I put the unit back together so it looks like this:


And this is the center unit:IMG_3380

There are still some units that I finished last Sunday, but I never took a picture of them.

I also made a quick birthday gift which I’ll show later. Then I got to spend some time working on the wedding quilt for my nephew and his lovely bride-to-be. I’m still working on the last four blocks, but my next sewing time should finish those, so you can expect pictures after my next sewing time (hopefully tomorrow evening). In the meantime,

Quilt on!


Not Again!

Once again I did not yet post last weekend’s progress! I am apparently an incredible slacker lately.

Last Saturday during the football game, I made some progress, but also a major mistake that I’ll have to fix during tomorrow’s game. Sigh.

This is the unit that is wrong. I used the wrong center fabric. (I wondered why I had to cut those 2 1/2 inch squares when I had been so careful with my cutting.)


That, of course, makes these units wrong. I will fix them during the game also.


And this is the total of what I completed last Saturday. Not so very much. It was a great game and I kept forgetting to stitch.


I also had some extra hand stitching time on Sunday evening when I played chauffeur for my husband, but I have no pictures of those units. The good news is that it leaves me set up to complete this block tomorrow even with the re-doing of the first units. So watch for pictures of the completed block this weekend.

In case you were wondering how many pieces are in this block, here’s the cutting chart. (I’ll let you do the addition!)


In nephew’s wedding quilt news (although maybe I should quit calling it that, since his bride is the one who is most excited about it), I am plugging along on the last four blocks. I need to cut and make some more flying geese, and then assemble the outer parts of those blocks. Then I will get to the part where I add lots of negative space to make the quilt 90″ square. I’m looking forward to that part! I hope to get the top completed this weekend and get it off to the quilter by Tuesday.

What are you up to this weekend?

Quilt on!

2014 In Review

One of the best things about blogging is that you can start a post and save it as a draft and add to it before actually posting it. I started this post, in note form, on January 2, 2014. I have added to it over the course of the year so that I have a pretty decent picture of my quilting year. Let me share it with you.

The first project I worked on in 2014 was the Christmas Celebration Tree Skirt for my eldest daughter. I had started it last year, but, as you can see, it was a complicated project.


The first projected I actually started in 2014 was the Disappearing Pinwheels quilt. I’m still working on making the blocks as I have plenty of other projects that I’m working on simultaneously. I have serious Quilter’s ADD.

We began the church auction quilt in February by cutting the fabric and passing out block kits to several people at church. The goal this year was to make a quilt that would fit in almost any color scheme. We put together enough block kits to make a king sized quilt, but they didn’t all come back finished and several had to be redone, so we settled for a queen-sized quilt which I began assembling in May.



I took part in my first charm swap in May (yes, I am late to the party!), and I have definite ideas of what I’m going to do with those 1 1/2″ squares, but I’m trying to hold the Quilter’s ADD in check and finish a few things first.

I completed a potholder (my first!) in June. I used a block from my 120 blocks project. This was also my first finish of the year. I did it to enter Very Lazy Daisy’s contest.


As I had promised our youngest daughter and her husband, I completed the Wedding Quilt in July. The finish coincided with their first anniversary and their move into their first house. (By the way, the room where this picture was taken is now their theater room and the walls are red.)


I completed Falling Charms a week later. It had been waiting for a binding for a month or so after returning from my favorite longarm quilter. The binding was even already made.


Another first for this one is that I pieced the back. As a hand quilter, I don’t usually do this, because in hand quilting I prefer as few extra layers (like seam allowances) as possible to quilt through. I think I like the back every bit as much as I like the front of this one.IMG_1954

We began quilting the church auction quilt in August. We got together in my basement a few times a week to work on this.

I attended AQS Grand Rapids in August. Last year, I learned I really didn’t like going for just one day. I like the chance to drop in on the show several times during the week. I took four classes! And I learned two things about that. First, I don’t want to take four classes that start early in the morning. Second, four classes are too many. Maybe a class or two and some lectures would be better. And maybe a couple of mornings to sleep in a bit! I started two new quilts at the quilt show during my two Kimberly Einmo classes. IMG_2229



At the quilt show, I had a great time with Nonnie and Carole. We got to spend a little more time together than last year. (Actually, Carole and I got to spend a lot more time together. Nonnie, I hope you get to come for more days next summer!)

IMG_2256Here we are in front of Katie’s Corgi Fairy Tale quilt.

I completed Christmas Celebration Tree Skirt top in September and sent it out for machine quilting. I got it back and bound by October 7, making it finish number four!


Immediately after sending off the above tree skirt, I began Carpenter’s Star Tree Skirt in September. After all, the younger daughter and her husband deserved a Christmas tree skirt also! They chose this pattern and it went quickly. I sent it out for machine quilting also and got it back and bound by October 29 (finish number five!). I was able to give both the tree skirts to their new owners when we got together to celebrate our eldest daughter’s birthday at the end (literally) of October.


We finished church auction quilt November 25, and it was auctioned off on December 5.


Shortly after that, I got the itch to play with some Christmas fabrics so I made a Jelly Roll Race and added some blocks to it. It is just waiting for me to take it to the longarmer, but I need to figure out a back for it first.



I have also worked on some old BOMs this year, getting to the seventh blocks in both the 2011 and 2012 Fat Quarter Shop Designer Mystery BOMs. And I started the 2014 Fat Quarter Shop Designer Mystery BOM with my friend Amy. I am hoping to completer the American Beauty BOM top before year’s end so that it can be my first finish next year.

The last UFO that I worked on this year is a tumbler quilt kit that I bought a few years ago and started a few years ago and wrote about here. I found it last week and started a push to finish it. So far 8 of the 14 rows are together:

IMG_2483Yep, those are not my usual colors, but they do look kind of masculine, don’t they? My son-in-law’s birthday is on January 9 and if a miracle happens, this will be a birthday gift.

So, I am apparently using this quilt top to avoid finishing the American Beauty BOM. Why do I not just get that one done?

Happy New Year and

Quilt on!

Blogger’s Quilt Festival Entry #1 – Hand Quilted

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.


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.


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


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!

Another Quilty Resolutions Update

It’s that time again. Time for the Third Quarter Quilty Resolutions Update.  I have the Quilty Resolutions that I made for Sandy at Quilting for the Rest of Us (where I’m linking this) and I have my own Quilty Resolutions in the sidebar to the right. I’ll cover both here.

First, Sandy’s, which are the quilting monkeys we want to get off our backs.

  1. “The American Beauty block of the month that I started in 2010. The blocks are all done – I just need to add the setting triangles, sashing and border.” Nope, this monkey is still here. The best I’ve done is look at the triangles and pick them up and count to make sure they’re all there. Sigh.
  2. “My fear of free motion. I need to make some quilt sandwiches with the scraps from the wool batting I used in my daughter’s wedding quilt so I can test them for the best laundering and drying. I might as well play with free motion quilting on them before I wash them up, right?” Well, I did put some sandwiches together, but I haven’t used them at home yet. I took two free motion quilting classes at the AQS show in Grand Rapids and I am definitely less concerned that I won’t be able to do it. I’ve just had other projects I’ve been working on.
  3. “My laziness and avoidance of learning to applique.” Yeah, that’s still there, sorry to say.

Now on to the resolutions on my sidebar.

  1. Complete at least 2 of the 4 BOMs I have going.
    a. American Beauty BOM See above
    b. 2009 Designer Mystery BOM – On the frame for hand quilting
    c. 2011 Designer Mystery BOM – Blocks 1-6 completed
    d. 2012 Designer Mystery BOM – Blocks 1-5 completed
  2. Complete the Wedding Quilt for my daughter and her husband before their first anniversary which is July 20. It is finished and delivered!!!!!! You can read about it here.
  3. Do some free motion quilting on one small project. See above.
  4. Complete the two Christmas tree skirts for my daughters before Thanksgiving. The first skirt top has been completed and quilted and is just waiting to be bound. The most recent blog post on it is here. The other Christmas tree skirt top is completed and off to be quilted.
  5. Complete the studio (aka family room) reorganization. Not enough progress to mention
  6. Complete the Falling Charms Quilt that is currently on the design wall. Finished!!!!!  The last post on it is here.
  7. Try some machine appliqué. See above.

I seem to have done much better at the Quilty Resolutions I made totally on my own that at the ones that I made following Sandy’s suggestions.  I’m on track to finish the tree skirts before my eldest daughter’s visit the weekend of October 31. Then I can give them to both girls. The tree skirts are not surprises so I’m not giving anything away.

Quilt on!

Last Wedding Quilt Update

In other words, it is finished and delivered! But not without a bit of angst. As I was quilting the border I came to a couple of mistakes. I can understand the first mistake because the block should be rotated 90 degrees:


The second one is less easy for me to understand. Apparently I really goofed up on the block. I don’t understand how I didn’t notice it when putting the border together. Just don’t get it.


For some reason, once I had gotten the borders quilted and the quilt trimmed up, the binding did not want to go on. I had to do part of it Sunday night and the rest on Monday evening. I’m sure part of the reason was dealing with the size of the quilt.

On Tuesday, Amazing Amy met me at church and helped me hand stitch the binding. It took the two of us four hours. Luckily, since it was 90+º outside, this sat on a table so we didn’t have to sit under it and really roast.

And here is the first official photo of the finished and washed quilt. I had to put it on my bed because it was too large for one person to hold.


Here is a closeup of the quilting in the large open spaces in the center of the quilt.


Today I met the recipients at their new home. Since they have not moved in yet, there was plenty of room for picture-taking. I am adding two pictures because my son-in-law is largely cut out of the first one. Of course, he’s kind of in a shadow so the second one is not much better!



Now that I’m looking at it all at once and not one little section at a time, I am really liking this. I like the way it washed up and I loved working with the wool batting. I learned a few things about my needle preferences for hand quilting, but that’s for another blog post.

And for those of you who are new readers, this was made from the pattern “Aegean Sea” in Judy Martin’s book Stellar Quilts.

May you enjoy your quilts this much when you finish them!

Quilt on!