Sunday, September 29, 2013

Some Left, Some Right

Finally have finished my second creation from the July Book of the Month selection (wow, was it really that long ago?).  Introducing Some Left, Some Right, measuring in at 44" x 60".
You may remember the first quilt, Pistachio Peppermint Swirl, (PPS).
Notice the predominance of dark red against lighter greens in Some Left, Some Right, and the mostly dark green trail against the vibrant background reds in PPS.  Of course, Some Left, Some Right was made with the leftover strips from the first project, but it's amazing what value and color do for a quilt.  The energy in Some Left, Some Right is mostly derived from the pattern, the alternating rows of geese.  But in PPS, it's both the pattern and background. 

I learned a lot making these quilts, and I highly recommend having Strips that Sizzle by Margaret J. Miller on your bookshelf.
Now, for all you aficionados of the quilting, here are some closeups.




















Swirls, arcs, and echoing using a green Glide thread in the background, and point to point S curves with red Glide in the geese are used throughout.

Here's some closer pictures






















So go and do something that's beyond your comfort zone.  You never know where it can lead you!

Happy Quilting!
 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Another Straight Line Tutorial

This is another tutorial on straight line stitching, which was used on Modern Square (click here for the full on view)
This was done without the use of expensive or fancy ruler systemsAll you need is a 6 or 12 inch longarm ruler, a 24 inch rotary cutter ruler, and a roll of tape.
First, let's do the border work.
The border was stitched in the ditch for stabilization, then the upper left corner was marked 1/2" in from each edge.  The other border corner (upper right) was divided in half on the 45, and marked with a small dot. The next stitching line goes to the inner corner border seam, and the space between the side borders was divided evenly for the third line.

Now comes the fun part!  Using a long piece of tape, gently place it from one mark to the other, in one motion.  Don't try to stick one end down then stick down the other end.  Distortion (a wavy line) can occur in the tape when trying to get the to the right spot.  
Using the longarm ruler as a guide, stitch along the edge of the tape.

For the diagonal lines in the middle, the same techniques are used, but with the help of the rotary cutter ruler.


Using the corner points between the inner block and the borders, a piece of tape marks the first line (on the right).  Working within the stitching field, another piece of tape is laid down with the help of the 45 degree marking on the ruler (placed on the border seam).  Place as many tapes as needed.  Stitch the lines, using the tape as a guide.

On this quilt, I stitched the top and bottom areas first, then went back to do the sides.  That gave me the chance to line up the side lines with the lines already stitched.
Unfortunately, I missed taking a picture of the tape extending from the sides, through the center block, and aligning with a stitched line.  But I think you get the idea of how to do it!

I just love using the tape as a guide!  So easy, with no marking!

As for the center, the border was quilted the same as the outer border.  In the middle, the tape was placed across the diagonal of the whole block as any misplacement would really show up in that small area.
I hope you give the tape idea a try!  A great inexpensive way to achieve straight lines. 

To see the other straight line tutorial, click here.

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

A Modern Experiment

It has been quite a while since my last post, due to helping a relative move (exhausting!), and the quilting of this quilt (frustrating!).
At the moment, it has the very unimaginative title of "Modern Square", as the title eludes me just as the quilting design did.

This quilt started out as a block assignment from our small Modern Quilt Group.  
It is from a book of 'modern blocks' (sorry, don't remember the exact name as I don't own the book), and each of us was to make one 12 inch block, keeping in the modern style. 

So that's great, but now what do I do with it?  I'm not one to let UFO's sit around for years (okay, I have one), so I decided to repeat the block design by scaling it up.  
Final measurements:  42" x 42", big enough for a baby quilt or a wall hanging.  Well, hubby liked it so much, he wanted it as a wall hanging.

Now the even more frustrating part.  How to quilt it.  
Originally, I had this planned
but set the quilt aside to work on some other projects.  Three weeks later, I'm back to this one.  And I don't like what I've planned! 

So, over the next three days, I spend 2-3 hours each day, drawing, erasing, and drawing, and erasing. 

Arrggh!  I was getting nowhere!  Then finally, I decided to go simple
and then I feel I'm getting somewhere.  Once I rid myself of the pressure to quilt it in the 'modern' style, with pebbles, swirls, or anything to fill up the negative space, the piecing was able to become the main focus again.

The above design was tweaked a bit more, and ultimately, not a single pebble appeared.
I do want to thank Angela Walters for her Dot to Dot quilting class on Craftsy for the diamond design in the squares.

So, if you find yourself stumped on a quilting design, try going simple, and maybe working up from there.  Remember, there are no quilt police!

And next time, how to quilt those straight lines.  (See the tutorial here)

Happy Quilting


Monday, September 9, 2013

A Sweet D9P

Wanted to post about this sweet Disappearing 9-Patch as it's about to disappear from my life. 
That is to say, the baby girl it was made for has made her entrance into the world, and now she gets to enjoy it.

The medium pinks were pulled from my big bin of nickel squares, and the solid maroon and white were pulled from the stash.  Those two compliment the pinks so well that they really make the D9P sing!  For a tutorial on this quilt and efficiently sewing a nine patch, click here.

This quilt was quilted with Glide Purple Rose, using one of my favorite pantos, Alfresco.
Just love the big flowers!  So sweet!

And as with all of my baby quilts, I put flannel on the back.  Found a matching pink with small flowers for this one.
Hope she likes it!

Happy Quilting

 

Friday, September 6, 2013

Instant Gratification!

Last night, I got started on one of the quilt tops from the Book of the Month, 3 Times the Charm, and I love it!

 After going through the stack of blue nickels,
I pulled out 36 of them 
(yes, there are 36!  I was just starting to sew when I thought I'd better take a picture of the layout in case they got mixed up)

then teamed them up with a white sashing for sparkle.  And what a quick and easy quilt to put together!  The directions were clear, and the result is awesome!  So much prettier than just sewing nickels together. 

So this makes another to add to the 'to quilt' list, which is getting longer by the day.  I really must attend to that...

Happy Quilting
 



Wednesday, September 4, 2013

September Book of the Month

I am on a mission this month--to use up my stash and more of those darned nickels!   And to aid this mission, I'm enlisting the help of a new book I found, 3 Times the Charm.


(The picture links you to Amazon, where you can find a hard copy.  Or, click here to go to Leisure Arts where it can be found for instant gratification as an ebook under the 'Quilting' catagory.)

Glancing through this book reveals some great quilts using creative cutting of those nickels.  I especially like Bertha, Dora and Emma.  And since I'm always in need of a baby gift, these patterns will do the trick!  And if I have to cut some yardage, then yeah! more out of my stash.  Then I can buy new fabric, right??

Now back to sewing.  Got one on the frame, three to be quilted, and one on the design wall.  Where does all the time go???

Off quilting!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Thank goodness for paint!

Have you ever wished you had just a bit more of a certain fabric?  Have something close but it needs to be a bit darker or have another color?  Try painting it!

I wish I had some more of this fabric
as the value and the colors lent a great luminosity to my project.  And after a second search through the stash, there is no more to be found.  

But, I did find something close.
The value was about the same, but it was lacking distinct blue and green areas.  So I cut off 1/2 yard and started sponge painting with watered down Setacolor Transparent paint.
The result?  Pretty close.
The original piece is on the left, the painted on the right.  The painted lacks some of the dimension of the original, but when it's cut up, I'm sure it will give me the same effect.  And yeah! a few more fabrics out of the stash!!!

Now to get back to sewing!  
Happy Quilting