Saturday, May 18, 2019

Pink! Pink! Pink!

I've been dabbling, dawdling and slowly getting things in order so far this month.  Nothing earth shattering is in the works, but I'm finding my way and coming up with a couple new ideas.

When the mood strikes me I like to make pot holders!  They might be small, they might not be every ones cup of tea, but I do like making them.  When I can use scraps of any kind I do get excited.  I've made numerous red, black, blue, teal, yellow, orange, green and rainbow pot holders, but it never crossed my mind to make pink ones.  Pink isn't a classic kitchen color combination by any means.  Far be it from me to tamp down an idea or go classic when it comes to pot holders!!

8 1/2" x 8 1/2"
My pink scraps were getting out of hand, now not so much!  Bits and pieces of pink sewn together haphazardly, or are they!  I built the improv sections first and then added the curve lines at the end.   

With all my pot holders, I use a layer of cotton batting and Insul-Bright in between the top and back.   



Because I love pink and gray together, this set ended up with the best of both worlds.  Another bonus of making pot holders for me is quilting them.  You don't often hear me say I like quilting, but in the case of these...yes I do!  They are easy to handle, I can get as crazy as I want and they are fast!  

8 1/2" x 8 1/2"
Another design I like to use when making pot holders is curves.  I tend to have a 50-50 split of odd size scraps and skinny strips.  The curve style is a good way to use the long strips regardless of width.  

Normally pot holder sets are exactly the same.  Two with the exact same design.  I don't know why they have to be, but they are.  I like to have my sets in the same colors, but each one is unique and different.



When I'm making my curve pot holders I use the same number of strips and same colors for each pot holder, except I mix it up so each one is unique.  That way they are similar yet different. 

Another plus to making pot holders is you can use large scraps for the back, colors that aren't your favorite or stray layer cake precuts.  

Do you have a favorite color combination for your kitchen decor?

I've been slowly making progress on my Neon Pink quilt!  I'll make a block or three here and there, which was the plan.  


I have about 50 more blocks to make for a queen size quilt.  We'll see how accurate I am with my calculations!



When it comes time to add the sashing, I think I might sew half a dozen of the rectangle blocks together to make one big block and then sew the bigger sections together.  That step is a long way off and how it comes together will be determined at that time!

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Friday, May 10, 2019

Ruffled Feathers

Another installment of aimlessly wandering through my quilting adventures!  I'm semi focused on quilting these days.  Mostly by making things that I've made in the past that I've wanted to make again, yet time didn't allow me to do so.  Now I have bits of time that I can use for those kind of projects.

Feathers.  I've always enjoyed making the Anna Maria Horner feather using woven stripes and thought it was a worth another visit.  You can get the free PDF pattern here:  Feather Bed Quilt.  I've made these feathers many times and really enjoy the simple process of piecing them together.  For my table runner I reduced the size from 9" x 18" to approximately 10" x 6".  That size varies depending on what I'm making with the feathers.


FEATHER RUNNER
15" X 49 1/2"
In this case, I made a runner!  Combining four feathers with chevrons made from Half Square Triangles.  The background I used for this runner is Kona Khaki.  I've always liked this neutral paired with the woven stripes.  The chevrons are made with Peppered Cottons.

  

I have a stack of woven stripe strips in various lengths that I used for my feathers.  It's a good way to use some scraps and make each feather unique.  The AMH feather pattern has you sew long strips together and then cutting the sides by flipping the template as you go.  If you are doing a large quilt, then this might be the best way to go.  I like each of my feathers to be different, so I generally make my sections large enough to be able to cut half of a feather from.



I'll use the same color stripe several times in each feather, except you won't see any repeat sides...I don't know if that makes sense!  



Before I started I had to make sure I had enough background fabric on hand for the front.  There is nothing worse than being just a tad bit too short, or having two dye lots of the same color yet they are just 'that much' off from each other!



With the front finished, it's also a good time to use some scraps for the back.



This Espresso brown has been hanging in my stash for years!  It wasn't big enough for much, but paired with a strip across the back of stripes...it works!  It does feel good to use what I have on hand.  

And so, you know how this story goes.  I was on a roll, my stripes were already out and strewn across my table, so I may as well make something else!  


FEATHER WALL HANGING
11 1/4" x 17 3/4"
A wall hanging was calling my name!  Gah!  I can't tell you how many times I've made a quilt and end up making one, two or three different things from the same fabrics.  It's something I cannot help.  I don't think it's a sickness, perhaps it's a desire to use every scrap so that I don't have to look at them for a while!



I just think the feathers are gorgeous!  





Of all the times I've made something 'feather', I've never used a black binding to finish it off!  After I did on this wall hanging, I wondered why I hadn't done it sooner.  I really like how it frames the piece!  Next time I revisit this pattern I'll be sure to keep that in mind for the binding!



Each feather was quilted in a different thread color and in between each feather I did a little match stick quilting.

If you think this is the end of those pesky stripe projects...you'd be wrong!  



One last...and I mean last...project was using some of the scraps that weren't long enough for a feather.  Pot Holders.  I made log cabin blocks to start with and pieced four together for each pot holder.  I know what you are thinking.  I think the same thing!  Overkill.  Over achiever.  Enough is enough.  Get a life!

What the next while has in store for me I can't say.  My daughter is moving home and it'll certainly change the every day dynamics of my life.  I'm staying positive!  I also know she hates living at home and loves her independence, which means she won't be here long!!  I'm just happy were able to help her out.  Hopefully I'll still be saying that after week one!!


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Sunday, May 5, 2019

Baby Bow Ties :: EPP

I found another project!  Another English Paper Pieced project that I putz around with in the evenings!

Bow ties have been on my must make list for a couple years yet I've never quite gotten around to making them until now.  As much as I'd like to make a large quilt using these blocks, realistically I just can't seem to fit it in with all the other 'wanna makes'!  The next best thing for me is baby blocks.  



I've been collecting Liberty of London fabric by buying scrap bundles from various places.  The pieces range in size and are never large enough to make a substantial sized block.  Believe it or not, that was my plan.  Small works for me and anything large would be a waste.  In fact, many of the pieces are still too big especially when I make small blocks like these.  I'll have enough Liberty scraps to last a life time!



Each Bow Tie when finished is 2" square.  You can see why I'll have scraps forever making something this size!  The center square is 1/2" with 1" squares for the corners.  Besides Liberty, I used Kona White for the background.  I figured it would be the best way to accentuate the delicate designs in the print and highlight the colors.  And it seemed like a good idea to use a complementary solid for the center square.

I'm trying to bring harmony to these little bow ties!



This is an example of how the blocks will come together once I get a batch done.  I won't sew these together until I determine the size of whatever it is I'm making. 



The plan is to use one print and one print only for each block.  How big will it be?  Certainly not a full size quilt!  More than likely a mini quilt that will indulge my need to stitch and become something that is irresistible!

This is slow sewing, so don't expect a finish anytime soon!  I'll share my progress along the way just to satisfy your curiosity...and mine!



I completely gave up on my Lucy of Boston EPP blocks.  These blocks use 1/2" honeycomb shapes and I couldn't figure out how to use the prints I have to make them look amazing.  My favorite blocks happen to be the solids, which isn't a big surprise to many of you!  I like the black, pink and white block, yet not enough to pursue it any longer.  

Back burner, back of the closet...that's where these will end up!  Maybe one day I'll pull them out and figure out a way to use them.  It's okay!  My intention was always to have something to keep me busy and these did just as planned!  Now that doesn't mean I wouldn't be happy to gift them to someone if they ever wanted them...just saying!

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Thursday, May 2, 2019

Slow Going :: But it's Something!

Some days (or weeks) it feels like I've done nothing in the way of quilting.  You can call it a creative block, lost mojo or whatever you like.  It happens to all of us at some point.  I feel like I haven't accomplished much of anything, yet I've done a few things.  They just don't feel like much an accomplishment!

The results of no mojo also impact my blogging.  I hate to not blog!  We all know that the art of blogging has steadily decreased over the years with the introduction of other social media platforms.  I feel it's important to carry on with blogging when so many others have abandoned it.  So, when I can't or don't blog, it feels like I've let myself down whether or not others read my posts.  I'll just say I'm going to work on that!  

One small finish I can share is this bonus half square triangle wall hanging.  This quilt was make from the bonus HST's from the baby Esme quilt I recently finished.  (New Baby :: New Quilt)


BONUS HST'S
18" X 18"
The baby quilt used many fabrics from my Cotton + Steel stash, which I was more than happy to finally use!  My main goal with the quilt was to use my stash, use my X-Squared block and make a lovely quilt.  All those goals were accomplished!  

  

Not one to waste even the smallest of pieces, I saved the HST's and threw together a mini quilt.  After trimming the HST's to 2", I then had to figure out a layout.  Easier said than done!  There are so many options available, but leave it to me to make it harder than it really needs to be!  The easy way would have been to go totally random with the placement of the blocks, but I choose to group like prints together.



I don't know how many times I rearranged each 2" square!  It snowballed and I couldn't stop myself!



My mind was set on starting with a focal point, in this case this cat skeleton print.  From there, I branched out mindful to keep the prints together.  Eventually I got there and it was time to sew the rows together.

 

With so many (144 to be exact) blocks to piece together it seems inevitable that there would be one or two that were accidentally flipped or turned during the process.  As was the case with the teal Sprinkles fabric.  Of course I didn't see it until all 144 blocks were sewn together!!



I thought about letting it go but in the end I just couldn't!  Fixed and happy about it!!  



























I pulled out my 50wt Mint (#2830) thread and quilted 1/2" lines starting at the center of the focal point blocks.  The mint is pretty subtle and blends nicely with the prints.  



I have to say...I love this mummy fabric!  It's worth a close up so you can see what I used for the binding!  



I'm not a theme or novelty print kind of person, and Halloween isn't my thing whatsoever...but these guys are 'all that and a bag of chips'!

Hopefully I'm on my way to a full recovery from the dreaded mojo-itis bug!  I've asked this question a time or two:  what's your solution when you can't find your mojo?  


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