Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bloggers Block-a-Palooza - time to finish the quilt

Bloggers Block-a-Palooza All 16 blocks

I joined the Blogger's Block-a-Palooza without really thinking about it. I had followed many of the featured bloggers and since I liked their quilting I figured it would fun to follow along. And I had a large stack of fat quarters of Pure, by Sweetwater, so I knew that I had lovely fabric to work with.

So now that I have finished the 16 blocks I have to decide what to do with them. The QAL has three suggested layouts and I think I will go with the 4 x 4 layout with sashing and corner stones. I am going to have to play around with the actual placement of each block to try to balance the different colours.

My biggest stumbling block is the quilting. These blocks have a lot of seams and the bits are mostly small but the blocks will finish to  12" square. I don't want them to sit in the closet, so I am going to have to come up with an idea soon.

If you want to head over to the flickr group, here is where you will see all the groups of blocks, and here is where you will see all the individual blocks. There is a lot of spectacular work, well worth a visit.


Quilt Dad

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Always in motion is the future.*

Binding again
Well, in motion or not, I have finished a quilt in the present.

Here it is before I washed it, in the tiny bit of almost sun we had this afternoon:

Magnolia Quilt

And here it is in its post-washing glory, although the sun is gone and we have an arty mood shot:

Magnolia Quilt

There are close ups of many of the blocks and more pictures of the whole quilt here.

My process for this quilt, in case you want one too, was to fussy cut the centre blocks at 4" square. I cut selvage to selvage strips of each fabric I had, one each of 1.5", 2" and 2.5" and made log cabin blocks. I assembled them in a random manner with no plan, just went with what felt good. The blocks were 12.5" square before I finished them. I sashed it with Essex Linen cut at 3.5". I used strips of 18" of the solids sewn randomly together to make the binding.

These are my first ever log cabin blocks, and I see many thousands more in my future!

Here is a bit of the back, which is all this lovely yellow print, and the block I will write the name of the quilt and details into before I give it away to my friend who is sitting about recovering from unexpected surgery. I am calling it the Magnolia Quilt.

Magnolia Quilt, back

More quilting to come --- always in motion is the future.

I have linked to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced, the work displayed there is always wonderful.
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced


*It is my dorky quilty friends at the QAL who are to blame...

Monday, March 28, 2011

Stylish? I am so glad you think so.

My new friend Rhonda certainly is stylish and when she was awarded the Stylish Blogger Award she passed one on to me.

It is rather amazing to me how quickly one can make new friends on the internet, jumping into the blogging and flickr quilting community has been a really nice experience. So, I am thrilled to receive this award.

There are responsibilities with all honours and this one has a few:
  1. Thank and link back to the person who bestowed the award. 
  2. Share seven things about yourself.
  3. Bestow the award on six recently discovered bloggers.
So, I cannot thank Rhonda enough, she blogs as Quilter in the Gap. Her work is lovely and she cleans her bathtub in beautiful heels. Well, not really but we can all dream of being so stylish!

Well, about me, I quilt to relax, I regularly visit the mountains and both large oceans and live on the prairie, I do yoga but not so much lately and am working to change that, I am good at computers but not yet at blogging and flickr and I have not had time to learn these well, I appreciate it when people take the time to help me out as I know that they are busy, I like to dance, and I like sports cars. And I would rather talk about quilts than me.

There are many stylish blogs and the quilting blogs I read certainly qualify. I really don't want to leave anyone out, and I don't remember who has already got this award as every blog I read deserves one. So I find this last responsibility challenging. But, pressing on, I award the Stylish Blogger Award to: 

a quilt, maybe
Domestic Light and Magic
Rags to Bags
Spontaneous Threads
A Child of the Wild Blue Yonder
jenn of all trades

I could go on and on about why these blogs are fun to read and the women behind them are talented, funny, creative, inspiring, friendly, welcoming, etc. but you should just go and meet them yourselves.

So, I leave you with a fabric picture, not sure what I will do with these yet.
K Fassett stripes



Saturday, March 26, 2011

Party Rings!

I am sewing today. I finished the 6 blocks for Lily's Quilts QAL. My quilt is going to be called Party Rings. I have to thank Judith for the name, we don't have these beautiful cookies or biscuits (depending on where you live) here in Canada. I think this name is perfect!

Each ring will be part of a square about 30". I plan to use two browns and a pink for the backgrounds.

Lily's QAL 6 Blocks

It is hard to wait for the next step, but the whole point of quilting along is to stay with your group. The group is great and all their wonderful work can be found here.

In the meantime, Lynne was very kind and set up a tutorial to allow us to ease into curved piecing. I had fun making my second mug rug last night.

At the beach

I had fun with the quilting!



Friday, March 25, 2011

Finally, its Friday!

I am off to work, with a weekend of quilting planned, even a trip to the fabric store.

Laptop case, with Echino

My computer brings a small bit of quilting along.

Playing with circles in the quilting

You can see that I am in dire need of more practice but I am attached to these rustic sort of spaced out circles.

Enjoy your Friday!



Tuesday, March 22, 2011

and the beat goes on...

Binding the quilt

I am binding the quilt full of puppies and boys, and monkeys too. Earlier it was not so tidy.


Now I am hand sewing the binding, it is peaceful and slow work.

And the mug rug test piece (when I am knitting I would call it a swatch) is washed, and it shrunk and puckered as I wanted.

Soft and bumpy after washing - Mug rug #1

So tomorrow I can get back to stippling the quilt for my friend, without all the worries.  I think she will like it, here is a look at just the top.

Magnolia quilt

And that is what the rest of my free time this week is, hopefully, going to look like.


ps I have linked to WIP Wednesday, there is plenty of excellent work over there to enjoy!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, March 21, 2011


Tonight I was sewing a bit, trying to work out a problem. I basted a lap quilt yesterday to finish for a friend recovering from surgery. Well, the batting I had bought turned out not to be quite what I expected - I was in a hurry and did not check carefully. So when I started to quilt yesterday, I began to worry that it would not fluff up and pucker as I wanted after washing. I set it aside.

Well, finally it dawned on me to make a sample, a test quilt piece. And then I remembered about Mug Rug Madness. So I made my first ever mug rug! I used the scraps left over from making my very first quilting bee blocks. I think there may be many more mug rugs in my future, especially with all the help that this mug rug event will provide.

I'll wash it tomorrow and then I'll know about the batting.

Wonky mug rug

I hope you have time to enjoy a cup of tea soon.



Sunday, March 20, 2011

With a little help from my friends.

Well, blogging is hard to fit in, given all the quilting I want to do! I have joined the internet quilting community in a big way and I have to say, so far I love it! Inspiration, encouragement, helpful advice, and comedy, all available in quilt alongs and quilting bees. Today I want to share the quilt alongs with you.

The Bloggers Block-a-palooza:
Quilt Dad

This quilt along started earlier this year and many of us are just finishing up the 16th block. Next will be sashing/finishing options and quilting. These blocks were each a surprise, twice a week. I would not likely have made most of them if I had not just decided to give whatever came along a try and I am glad I did. I have learned a lot about more traditional piecing. Here is my favourite block so far:
You are here block, bloggers block-a-palooza

I am excited about Lily's Quilts QAL:
Lily's Quilts QAL

We are making a wonderful dresden circle quilt with 30" blocks and "quilt as you go" quilting. I am having a wonderful time as this group is not only amazingly talented but they are funny!

I cut my dresden blades yesterday. These are a combination of Giselle, by Jessica Gonacha Swift, and Kona solids. This stack is 3" high!

Stack of cut dresden leaves for Lily's Quilts QAL

And I sewed up the trial first plate this morning.
Dresden plate, first one

I am already in love with this. I am planning two different browns and a pink as the background and inner circle fabrics. With the dense quilting involved, I think this is going to be extremely cool when it is done.

Then there is the Supernova Quilt Along, which is just starting:

Supernova Quilt-Along with Freshly Pieced

Lee's quilt has been one of my favourites since I found it on the internet and now she is going to show us how to make it, step by step. I am planning to use Timber by Jessica Levitt, and I just have to find a few solids to throw into the mix:

Timber by Jessica Levitt

I have also joined two quilting bees and I will tell you more about them later, as it is time to get back to quilting today.



Thursday, March 17, 2011

Top of the morning to you!

lime green Irish chain

A little traditional but lime green quilt for St. Patrick's day. The back is not so traditional.

lime green quilt, back

Enjoy the day, I am off to work, arriving back home after midnight...



ps This is my first stippling attempt, see how all my "mistakes" have disappeared in the soft, bumpy after washing quilt.

Monday, March 14, 2011

and miles to go before I sleep...

Well, it feels like miles anyway. I am still relatively new to stippling and I love the way it makes the quilt all bumpy and soft.

These fabrics came from Pink Chalk Fabrics. I asked for help picking solids and Kathy Mack was wonderfully helpful by picking not only greys but the brilliant red and yellow. The pattern is called Lemon Squares Quilt. I used the colours more randomly in the blocks than the pattern and I arranged the blocks with only the rule of solid outside square next to patterned one. As a relatively new quilter, I am so grateful for the generosity of bloggers like Faith who make such excellent patterns available for free.

It has been wonderful to have so many people visit, comment and follow my brand new blog. I especially want to thank Agnieszka who taught me how to make links. I love that I have a new friend in Poland!

I also learned to post buttons today and later this week I will tell you more about the quilt alongs I have joined. Also, I will, as promised, get back to the Red Quilt and tell you more about why I think everyone should have a copy of Cherry House's City Quilts. But for now, I want to quilt a bit before I go to sleep.


ps  I think I will try a link to WIP Wednesday - there are many interesting projects there already!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Saturday, March 12, 2011

please allow me to introduce myself

Well, I guess I will give blogging a try. I enjoy the inspiration I get from reading other bloggers and so maybe my quilting adventures will be interesting too. Please bear with me as I get my bearings in the blogging universe. 

Also, quilting is a new passion for me. I also knit all the time. I am sure that knitting projects will find there way here too. 

Oh, and about me. I live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, with my family and pets. When I am not working at my busy, demanding, stressful, fulfilling, exciting, (insert adjective here) day job, I try to fit as much quilting time in as I can. I also have to fit in time with my kids, exercise, volunteer work, gardening, shopping, renovations, and whatever life throws our way, so the quilting time is variable. However, I am loving the quilting I am able to do and maybe sharing it will make it even more fun.

Recently I made a quilt for one of my sons. He wanted a red quilt, so I made him City Tracks which is a pattern by Cherry House in her City Quilts book. Here is a close up, I will share more about this quilt later, and by then I will figure out how to post a link to this excellent book.