Tuesday, June 6, 2017

OMG: June - Finish 5 Rows

I'm setting a lofty (for me) goal for June through One Monthly Goal over at Elm Street Quilts. I've become a bit obsessed with finishing my A Chorus Line quilt top--my mom is already having hers quilted, and as I add more pieces to my design wall, I'm eager to see it finished! I keep setting aside things I *should* be doing so I can work on it. I've decided to fix that problem--my June goal is to finish piecing all five rows--so now I can add this to my *should* list! 

Here's where I am right now: 

I need to finish the gray star points for the teal blocks, and then the white star points for all the blocks. Then, assembly! 
After I get to that point, I can decide what to do for the row borders and the outer border. But for now, assembling the five rows is my goal. 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

OMG: Quilt Top Finished!

My One Monthly Goal for May was to finish my Fly Away quilt from the Heather Jones workshop in March. 

I pinned the borders onto this quilt (that's all I had left to do for my goal) a week ago, and then this quilt sat on the floor while I dabbled in other things, like sewing pieces for this quilt

Amazing how sewing blocks segments is more fun than adding borders. And amazing that it took me 31 days to add the borders! :) That's why I love One Monthly Goal--without it, the pinned quilt would still be sitting on the floor of my studio! 

I'm looking forward to quilting this Jacquie Gering style! But for now, I'm just happy to have the quilt top finished. 



Sunday, May 7, 2017

May OMG: Adding borders!

My OMG for May is simple--add the outer saffron solid border to this quilt, from Heather Jones' Fly Away workshop. Quick and easy to do, yet I haven't gotten it done in the last 3 weeks. So now I have a deadline! 


(And...if you read my April OMG post, unlike that quilt, I KNOW I have enough fabric for the border here, so there shouldn't be any surprises!)

Thanks, Patty from Elm Street Quilts, for hosting OMG to keep us motivated!

Friday, May 5, 2017

A Chorus Line class at Quilt Market

Last year for my mom's birthday, I "gave" her a quilting class that we'd take together. We both quilt a fair amount, but since she lives in Wisconsin and I live in Michigan, we don't sew together very often. We chose Debbie Caffrey's "A Chorus Line" quilt class at Spring Quilt Festival in Chicago. We had a fun day--taking the class, walking the show (during the lunch break!) and grabbing a quick dinner afterwards before heading back to our respective homes. 

Here we are with Debbie, our sample blocks, and Debbie's class sample in the background:

Chain pieced triangles. Debbie had plenty of cutting and piecing tips and shortcuts to share with us. 

My blocks at the end of the day. I tend to sew pretty quickly, to maximize my kid-free sewing time! :) 

Mom's first few blocks. She's using the cool blues, greens and teals from Benartex's Dreamscape collection. Great texture in these prints!


When at Quilt Festival, you have to take a photo in front of the sign! 

We finished the day at Roti, a quick and delicious Middle Eastern restaurant.
Yum!

 I struggled a lot to choose a color palette and fabrics for this quilt. I really wanted to work out of my stash, but just couldn't find inspiration. I ended up at my local quilt shop and walked away with these fabrics:

I fell in love with the stripe and planned to use the brights to contrast with it. I still wasn't totally satisfied, and at the last minute, I grabbed a stack of low volume prints with white backgrounds. That proved to be key to my design. Mom and I took a quick trip to Material Matters, a fun quilt shop in Thiensville, WI, and I found some gray prints. Instead of using white and light gray in the blocks, I chose to use white and light gray prints. That subtle change made all the difference in my mind, and I went to the class excited about my fabric choices. 

Here's where I am right now. I have all twenty-five of my blocks done. Time to sew the flying geese and square-in-a-square units to create the outer star points. 
I can't wait to keep working on this! I'm most interested to see if the stripe will actually work when this is all assembled, or if it will be too busy. If it's too busy, I'll find something else to use it for!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Heather Jones' Fly Away Class

Heather Jones lectured at our latest Great Lakes Modern Quilt Guild meeting (a cold, rainy Saturday...perfect to be inside talking about, viewing, and sewing quilts!). 

In the afternoon, we participated in her Fly Away workshop--a graphic quilt made of large-pieced blocks. 


I went out of my comfort zone, color-wise, for this quilt. I had yardage from Contempo Studio's Sevilla collection in gold, black, cream, and gray. I purchased a coordinating gold solid to go with these fun geometric prints. 

During the afternoon workshop, I got all of my half-square triangles stitched and laid out the quilt center on the floor: 

Right now, I have that entire center assembled. All that's left is to add the outer gold border. (It's hard to judge size from this photo--the finished quilt is 72" square!)
 I'm looking forward to quilting this using some of Jacquie Gering's walking foot machine quilting techniques. 

We also held a pincushion swap with the Oahu Modern Quilt Guild, and this was our meeting to drop off our pincushions. But--lucky us--the Oahu Guild's box had arrived that week, so we received our pincushions from Hawaii!

Here's the pincushion I made: 

Our pile of pincushions, ready to fly to Hawaii:

The pincushions we received from the Oahu guild:

Here's the pincushion I received, all made out of selvedges. Isn't it fun? 

Sunday, April 30, 2017

April: OMG complete!

I finished my April One Monthly Goal! My goal had been to take the star blocks you see here and finish the quilt. 
I ended up adding a little pop of color to the outer border for one reason only--I ran out of the background gray fabric and decided I would finish the quilt with what fabric I had rather than getting more. I had leftover scraps of the star colors, so i pieced a section using the colors from each star for that particular side. 
I love the bright colors in this quilt! The solids are all from Paintbrush Studio's Painter's Palette Solids, and they're such a silky pleasure to work with. 

Find the tutorial I used from Confessions of a Fabric Addict here.

Friday, April 7, 2017

OMG April: Exploding Stars!

My OMG goal for April is simple--to finish my exploding stars quilt top! 
This one has been on my design wall for a few weeks, and I can't wait to finish it! (And to free up my design wall!)

Friday, March 31, 2017

OMG March: Quilted Froggy!

I finished my One Monthly Goal for March--to machine quilt by scrappy Mr. Froggy! 


I did large pebbles in the blue to create a water look (using blue thread). 

And just stitched lines in the frog (in green, of course!). 

For the outer border, I resorted to my favorite quilting motif, which I learned from Angela Walters' Free Motion Quilting book. It's fun to do and I love how it looks! 

It feels so good to get these goals crossed off my list; especially the machine quilting goals, because like all of us, I have way too many quilt tops waiting to be quilted! 

Linking up with Elm Street Quilts and pondering my April goal...


Monday, March 13, 2017

Block Happy! Winter Edition

It's been a long time since I've shared do.Good Stitches blocks that I've made! I'd like to make a couple of these quilts myself...

July 2016

August 2016

September 2016

October 2016

November 2016 


December 2016


January 2017

February 2017

March 2017





Friday, March 10, 2017

The quilt that wouldn't take "no" for an answer

Have you ever seen a quilt design that grabbed you and you just had to make it? As in, right then? 

On Wednesday, while browsing online, I stumbled across this Exploding Star quilt by Sarah from Confessions of a Fabric Addict. (BTW, if you're not familiar with Sarah, check out her blog! Each spring she puts on the Hands 2 Help Charity Quilt Challenge, encouraging quilters to make and donate a quilt. It's a great event!)
Sarah's Exploding Stars quilt. Find the tutorial here.

I couldn't get this quilt design out of my head. I needed to make it. I browsed through my Painter's Palette Solids stash and picked out colors. So much fun to pick out all these happy, saturated brights. My only constraints were I needed to find four colors with enough fabric to cut the large stars. I had 2-1/2 yards of a light gray hanging around, so I was set for background. 

I had Thursday night all to myself, so I got started, letting this quilt leapfrog all the other things I should have been doing (dishes, work, sleeping...). 

I made one star block completely, and then worked on the remaining three assembly-line style, which went faster. I don't love trimming HSTs, but I do love how that pile of bright scraps looks!

I started sewing at 9:15 and finished the last star block at 12:30. I would have loved to do more, but it was time for bed. I can't wait to finish it! 


Thanks, Sarah, for such a wonderful design! 

Monday, March 6, 2017

OMG March: Mr. Froggy

I've got my March goal for One Monthly Goal over at Elm Street Quilts! And totally by coincidence, it's green! 

Three years ago, on a family trip to Disney World, I took a photo of a tile floor in a bathroom, thinking it would make a great quilt. 


Three years later, the idea became a quilt top, in large part thanks to my mom. She's a quilter as well, and always happy to pitch in with some sewing help. I sent her the directions for making the quilt, as well as a bag of green, blue and white scraps. 

Here's what she returned to me: 
(Thanks Mom!)

My March goal is to machine quilt Mr. Froggy. After spending a long weekend staring at Jacquie Gering's walking foot machine quilting, I'm eager to try out some of her designs!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

QuiltCon Recap - Part 2

My second demo at QuiltCon was Making Wonky Mini Four-Patches. 
I used these cute precut 2-1/2" squares--Paintbrush Studio calls them Paint Chips--to make two different styles of wonky four-patches. 

Here's a pic from the first demo (I had another super helpful "Vanna" holding my quilts). 

A look at the quilt--Four-Patch Parade. I made teeny wonky four-patches (1-1/4" finished) and inserted them into gray and white strips. 

Love the quilting--done by Diane Oakes--she even included little machine quilted four-patches for fun!

Larger wonky four-patches, made by combining four 2-1/2" squares and then cutting them wonkily. A simple but fun mini quilt. 

Friday, March 3, 2017

QuiltCon Recap - part 1

The Hashtag quilt wasn't the only design I had at the show. I was asked to do two demos, so I created samples using the Painter's Palette Solids.

My first demo was Mod Illusions: The 3Ds of Quilts Made with Solids. The quilts you see below demonstrate the principles I talked about. 

Here's me, mid-demo. The Modern Quilt Guild provided me with a "Vanna" to hold up quilts while I talked. (thanks, Chelsea!)


Here's what the demo crowd looked like:

 And just to keep things real, here's a selfie from earlier that morning. I am a water girl, not a coffee drinker. But after a late arrival in Savannah the night before, I decided to sugar up with a chai tea latte. I noticed the lovely stain on my shirt after I got to the convention center. Yikes! Thankfully our hotel was right next door, so I could pop back and change before the demo! 

Here's the "In & Out Log Cabin" quilt, which shows how you can create the illusion of peaks and valleys with value changes. My friend Diane Oakes quilted it. 

A close-up of the quilting, which I love! 

My "Woven Hashtag" variation--a larger version of the block from the Hashtag quilt, but each strip uses four different values to create a gradated illusion. (Diane quilted this one as well.)

"Mod Tumber" - This might be my favorite. Short tangent here. When I first started quilting (17 years ago!), I fell in love with the tumbling block concept. Some wise soul suggested that not be my first quilt. The tumbling block ended up so far on the back burner that I didn't make it until this one. I love the 3-D effect here! And sidenote--if you're considering a tumbling block quilt, definitely use triangles for the black parts in my quilt rather than sewing Y seams! Much easier!

I sewed this quilt the day before I left for QuiltCon, so I quilted it myself.