Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Calgary Modern Quilt Guild project

Hi everyone, it's that time of the week again, Work In Progress Wednesday! 

I joined the Calgary Modern Quilt guild a few months ago and we have decided to work on a project together.  We are following the instructions found here at Modern Monday and hope to make 8 blocks per month.  The plan is to have all 64 blocks made by October so we can plan a sew-in for November and put the quilts together for next that's planning ahead!!

In keeping with the Christmas theme, I'm using my 12 days of Christmas fabric by Kate Spain.
Block 1 - easy, peasy!  Each block is 6 1/2 inches, with seam allowance.

Block 2 - my fave so far and my DD's...I think she's hinted she might need a quilt using this block.

A slight variation on Block 3.
That's all I have for now, must get back to the textbooks!


Monday, February 25, 2013

Double Wedding Ring Quilt...and the fun begins!

Hello everyone, happy Monday to you all.  It's a grey day here in Calgary, with a bit of a chill in the air...more snow is on it's way, so what a perfect day to spend in the sewing room.  This is my last day off before classes resume, so I must make the most of it!

The double wedding ring quilt journey has begun, and it will be a year-long process at the very least.  I spent 8 hours at the quilt 'till you wilt on Saturday and got a good start on my paper piecing. 

Here are  the first two rings done.  Yep, they look a little wonky there, they kept falling off the design wall, so I had to be quick when I took the photo!

This is one set, which consists of an A piece on top and a B piece on the bottom.  Notice I haven't added the corner pieces, those go on later.  I have 14 sets made and I need 49 sets...:-)

Here's a quick view of the paper piecing process.  I've already sewn on my first two fabrics, ironed them and will trim them down a little.

Place your ruler on line 2, which is your sewing line for the next colour.

Fold your paper over the ruler.

Place your add-a-quarter rule on top of your quilt ruler.  There's a special groove that keeps the special ruler in place so it doesn't slip.  I highly recommend this little gadget if you plan on doing a big project like this.  If you don't have a special ruler, I used to place a smaller quilting ruler on top of the paper at the 1/4 inch mark.  It was tricky cutting because the top ruler would often slip, but it will work in a pinch.

Trim off the excess fabric.

Place your fabric on top of the next colour you are using.  Make sure the bottom piece of fabric is right side up.  Align the right edges and place your paper over the fabric so the printing is also right side up.

Now you are ready to sew on line 2.  See the dotted line to the right?  That's your seam allowance.  Place the next piece about a half inch below your first one, and continue until you get the end of your fabric strip.

I can place seven arcs on each strip of batik.  Each strip is 2 1/2 inches wide.  Flip your arcs and fabric over, and press your fabric open.  Be careful, as the ink may transfer onto your ironing board.  Once you've pressed your fabric, you can bring your arcs to your cutting board and carefully cut them apart.  Then you begin the process of trimming down the fabric you've just sewn and can add your next colour!
Happy sewing!

Friday, February 22, 2013

The power of one block

Hello everyone, I hope you are enjoying your Friday.  Aren't you glad the weekend is here?  I certainly am, because, lucky me, I'm heading off to a quilt 'till you wilt tomorrow with some friends..yoohoo!  10 am to midnight...or in my case, 12ish to maybe 6ish.

I did spend a little time in the sewing room this week, working on some charity quilts.  Not whole quilts, just one block actually...

Each member of my quilt guild, the M & M's, was asked to make one monkey block this's my paisley primate, almost done...

...we are using this pattern to make some quilts for children who are hospitalized...

...the pattern is in the current Love of Quilting magazine.

We also volunteered to make some memory folders for parent's who have had a child die...

Here are the supplies each of us received, some fabric,  recycled   x-ray plates cut to size and the instructions.

A finished folder...this was a heart wrenching project to work on. 

I am discovering so many new projects that quilter's work on to help others, from place mats for Meals on Wheels, quilts for seniors in care, memory quilts/tactile quilts for Alzheimer's patients, to quilts for victims of natural disasters...there are so many ways we can, and do, help others.


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Getting ready for a 2014!

Hello everyone!  My eldest daughter got engaged recently and she asked me to make a double wedding ring quilt as a gift for her and her naturally, I said yes!  I searched through my collection of quilt magazines and books....and couldn't find one double wedding ring pattern.  Not. one. I still can't believe it myself.

I found this wonderful paper-pieced pattern at my LQS, and am going to begin this project this weekend (I'm going to a quilt 'till you wilt on Saturday...more on that later!).  I will make a few adjustments to the pattern though, most notably I won't be adding the applique.  I will make the quilt larger, and will make a scalloped border instead.  That's the plan anyway!

I'm using batiks in greens and blues for the rings.  I found just the right mix of colours in this Bali-Pop called Tiramisu.  They are the colours of the MacIntyre hunting plaid, which is what the groom and his best man will be wearing at the wedding.

My daughter found this double wedding ring quilt for me a few years ago and has been requesting one for herself ever since.  I hope I do the pattern justice and don't muck it up!
 You'll be seeing lots of this project in the coming year, I promise!


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Cowboy Quilt

My cowboy quilt is near completion, three looooong seams to sew and it's done!  I still have two weeks to go before my son-in-law's birthday, so maybe I should try and quilt it myself?  Nothing fancy of course, some in-the-ditch and maybe some loops that I could try and pass off as lassos??

I'm linking up to Needle & Thread network and to Freshly Pieced this week! 

Here it is, almost done.  I may have enough of that yummy caramel-coloured fabric to add a border on the top and bottom of the quilt.  I checked with my LQS and they don't have any left, so I will have to make do with what I have!
Had just enough of the saddle fabric to add the large spacers between the blocks.  There's plenty of room for quilting here.

Decided on a bear's paw for the middle block, used up some scraps for the smaller blocks. I used the basic design pattern from the book 'Circle of Nine' for this quilt.


Monday, February 11, 2013

Downton Abbey sew-in


Hello all - it's confession time...I'm a Downton Abbey addict.  Love, love, love that show, the costumes, the drama, the pithy one-liners (who doesn't love Maggie Smith??), did I mention the costumes?  I'm following Mary-Kate's Downton Abbey sew-in over at Quilter's Newsletter and thought it was a splendid idea!  Quilting while watching Downton...could life get any better?? :-) 

Well, it's a good idea in theory but I'm not getting very much done in the way of quilting.  Am still working on the binding for my swirling stars...looks like my niece will have to wait a wee bit longer before I can send it off to her. 

Here's a photo of the quilt taken last summer when I began working on it...just realized I haven't taken a photo of it since.  Must get on that!
Looks like I'll have to take another photo when I've finished the binding.


Saturday, February 2, 2013

Scrappy squares & cowboys too!

Now that I'm well into my second semester at the University of Calgary, I'm finding it a challenge to squeeze a little quilting time into my day.  I did finish one quilt top, using 2-1/2 inch squares I bought two years ago in Kelowna, BC. My scrappy squares still needs to be quilted, so technically, it's not really a finish, but I know I won't get that part done anytime soon, so off it goes into the 'TBQS' pile - to be quilted someday! :-)

I have been working on my future son-in-laws quilt though.  I have a deadline for that one and it needs to be done in one month, in time for his birthday.  I've booked some quilting time with friends next weekend, so I'm hoping to get a lot done then.  Fingers crossed!


A close-up of my scrappy squares quilt.  There are 432 squares in this quilt top.  Putting this together was quite easy, as I made four-patch units and then sewed those together in a nine-patch formation.  Each block has 36 individual 2-1/2 inch squares, but only 9 four-patch blocks....that made matching up seams so much easier to manage! 

I added a 2-1/2 inch border of Kona Espresso, which I love.  I used up some ecru and red polka-dot fabric for the sashing.  You can get a peek at it in the photo above.

Here's a peek at my cowboy quilt.  I need to get the corner blocks done and then the center block.  I ran out of the horse-riding cowboy fabric, so I'll have to make something else...I've picked out a block called a Bear's Paw star, which I think will work.

Here's a closeup of some of the other fussy cut squares.  These images are replicas of old postcards that are printed on fabric.  Found them at my LQS a few years ago and were the inspiration for the quilt.