Sunday, January 31, 2010

BOM Drunkard Path Variations - January Block

I signed up for a BOM called Drunkard Path Variations that is being run by Kerstin .  I only got my templates for these block this past week and with work being rather busy I had to leave this to the last weekend in January.  I'm very please with how it turned out for a first timer at curved piecing.  I must say it has been a learning experience. I had to get a smaller sized rotary cutter and that made things a lot easier in the cutting department. Sewing the curves was interesting but lots of pins made it easier. The directions said to use 5 pins well I think I was using like 9 pins :-). Here is my finished block.
Below are the fabrics that I'm planning on using for this project. The Kaufman fusion fabric will be in each of the block (top). The fabric that is on the far left is the backing.  The 6 batiks that are resting one on top of another will appear in 2 of the 12 blocks each.  The one on the bottom is the one I used in today's block.  The darker batik that is along the bottom will likely be a sashing but that may change once all the blocks are completed.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Baby Quilt Animal Party - Part 3

I finished the baby quilt today.  Since all that I had to do was the binding I typically can work on that at night when I don't need the best of light.  I'm pleased with how it turned out despite the difficulty with the way the panel was printed.  I did send an e-mail to the manufacturer Kaufman and I did get an e-mail that they received my e-mail and were looking into the matter.  That was over a week ago and I haven't heard anything since so I suspect I won't hear back as to what happened that caused the panel to be printed that it was off grain by 1 1/2" between the top and bottom.

I'm still working on the Art & Cold Cash project and should have that completed for next weekend just in time for the other gal to take it and start the beading.  Since that involves free motion quilting on a very dark indigo hand dyed fabric I find I'm best to work on that in the day light hours.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Baby Quilt Animal Party - Part 2

I finished the quilting on the Animal Party quilt today. It was a simple grid quilting that I did on this quilt. I started out with a 6" grid in aqua coloured thread using a saddle stitch. This stitch is a more defined stitch than a normal straight stitch in that the needle goes back and forth while creating it. Then I created a second grid in a mango coloured thread that was 1 1/4" to the right of the aqua grid lines. Finally a third gird in grass green thread that was 1 3/4" to the left of the aqua grid lines.

One thing that I learned about the saddle stitch, at least with my machine, is that you can't go fast while doing it, or it tries to revert back to an almost normal straight stitch. I think what it is, is when the speed of the machine is too fast, it doesn't have enough time to go back and forth properly. I had to go back and redo a couple of the aqua rows of stitching because they were not well defined.

Here is a close up of one of the blocks and you can see what the grid looks like. The other nice thing about doing this grid pattern is that I locked the stitching at the beginning and end so I don't have to sit there and tie off and feed all the ends through the inside of the quilt. All the ends are at the edge of the quilt which will be covered over with binding so that should protect the small ends that are left. This makes for a fairly quick way of getting a quilt quilted. The interest is added by using multiple colours of thread and a thicker stitch.

Here is what the back of the quilt looks like like. This fabric is so cute.

I would definitely use this method of quilting for any charity quilts I have to do or if I need to get something out on a tight dead line. So I just have to make up the binding and get that sewn on and the quilt is finished.

That will have to wait about a week or so since I have to get the last bit of quilting done on the Art & Cold Cash quilt because the gal who is going to be doing the beading on it will be ready to take it in a couple of weeks.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Baby Quilt Animal Party - part 1

I'm making another baby quilt and for the most part I'm a believer of keeping things easy and simple when it comes to baby quilts. Typically they are used and abused, so I don't feel like spending hundreds of hours of my time making them, but still want to make something to celebrate the birth of a friends' child. Also the quilt is for the child so they should be able to use it while they are growing up instead of it being folded up in some drawer for safe keeping because there was too much work put into it.

I like using panels since usually all it means is sewing on a border and you are ready to quilt. I saw the new line of kids fabrics from Robert Kaufman called Animal Party and really liked the nice bright colours and cute animals on the panel they had. I figured this would be another simple quilt to make until the fabric arrived in the mail.

As you can see from the picture above of the panel print it is based on a wonky log cabin idea. But when I got my panel, not only were the blocks in the panel wonky, the whole panel was wonky. At first I was cursing the fabric shop that I had ordered my fabric from for cutting the panel crooked. So I laid out the panel on the table to see what I could do with it and took a couple of my large cutting rulers to see just how off things were. This is when I actually noticed that the panel was printed crooked in relation to the weave of the fabric and there was no way to cut the panel so it would be on grain. Usually Kaufman fabrics are really of good quality so I'm not sure what happened with this lot.

So I decided to cut out each of the blocks from the panel and add an additional strip of fabric around each block as you would in a wonky log cabin and then square the final block. I had bought some small circle fabric for an inner border and for some reason I bought 1 yard instead on my normal 1/2 yard that I would for an inner border for this type of quilt. Thus I had enough fabric to create proper squared blocks.

I'm now in the process of quilting this. I'm keeping that very simple on this one. I'm doing a grid of 6" squares of straight line quilting in an aqua thread but I'm using a thicker stitch called a saddle stitch to give it a bit more emphasis. Then I'm going to quilt with a mango coloured thread another grid that is 1 1/4" to one side of the aqua grid and finally a third grid of a grass green thread that is about 2" to the other side of the aqua grid.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Christmas Quilts - Part 9

I finished the second Christmas quilt this past weekend but wasn't able to post pictures of the completed quilt until now because I was without a computer. I finally got a new computer and my friend Dave was helping set it all up and need my old computer to transfer all the files over. So I have spend the last week minus a computer at home. My new computer came home last night and now I have a learning curve with the new Windows 7 system. So far it's not too bad, other than trying to find out where everything is or what they call things in the new system.

So here are the pictures of the second quilt.

I thought I was really lucky when on the first quilt the doves lined up beside the pine cone vertical sections on the back of the quilt. I wasn't expecting this to happen on the second quilt with the poinsettia sections because the spacing was somewhat different, but to my amazement, the doves still managed to line up along side the poinsettias.

Here is a closeup of the back.

The quilt is packaged up and on it's way to Plymouth MA and should arrive in about a week to it's new home. I'm looking forward to hearing what Cindy and William have to say about their belated Christmas present.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

2010 New Years Goals

I've done my review of projects that I would like to get done this year, some are currently in progress, while others are brand new. It will be interesting to see how this year unfolds in terms of which projects actually do get finished, which ones don't (for what ever reason) and what new projects will come my way.

I have only put actual months beside projects that I see getting done in the next 3 months. Then there are a couple of projects for the spring, and several projects that will be Christmas presents that I will need to start by the summer time if I am to get things done in time for the holidays. A few new projects have returned for last year so I will see if they actually will get done.

I have also signed up to do a BOM that is based on the block Drunkard's Path which involves curves. This will give me some good practice in that area and also shouldn't be as time absorbing as the Friday Block Party (FBP) was in 2009. The FBP was a great experience and I was able to hone my skills but towards the end I found it hard to keep up making blocks every week. Also I now have a whole pile of orphan blocks that I need to either find uses for or perhaps donate them to someone who would use them.

I also listed my UFOs that have no commitments at this time for completion since I figured I better keep a handle on them as well.

Jan: Baby quilt – animal party
Feb: Art & Cold Cash collaborate quilt project – finish quilting on the black red and turquoise version so it can then be given to Bernice for beading
March: finish my Cats & Dogs quilt for our small quilt group
Early Spring: Learn how to create paper piecing patterns from Hetty of Crafts and Stuff
Spring: finish Falling Splendor quilt
Spring: spend some time exploring some of the techniques from my thread painting workshop
Christmas present: Flower garden lap quilt in purples
Christmas present: Flower garden lap quilt in blues
Christmas present: stack coin quilt in stone fabrics
Christmas presents: Origami Stars and quilted birds (assorted)
Christmas charity quilt: using blocks from the Friday Block Party 2009
Any time: Bird of Paradise Harmonic Convergence wall hanging (for me to hang in my office)
Any time: One block wonder quilt ( I already have the fabric and am curious as to how this will turn out)
BOM: Drunkard’s Path Variations

UFOs that are outstanding
Hawaiian orchid pillow – hand quilting
2 wall hangings from Gloria Loughman’s workshop – colour is magic and layer by layer
Kaffe Fassett – colour in design diamond quilt

So there's my list and it is sure to keep me busy. It will be interesting to see what new things will come in to tempt me and change priorities along the way.