Wednesday, April 20, 2011

I am really excited about this

Yes, I know, it doesn't look like much but I am amazed that it looks like it is supposed to! What is it? It is part of the border for the quilt I am working on. The quilt that is eating its way through my baskets of 1 1/2" strips like crazy. The pattern calls for 1 1/4" strips but whenever I make anything really strippy like log cabins I like to use a wider one and trim down. I get straighter strips that way. Besides I have more 1 1/2" strips hanging around. Here is a section of it closer up.

As I said I have been using strips like crazy. Many of the blocks are courthouse steps with the same fabrics on all 4 sides so I have been doing lots of sorting. Probably the tool I have been using most is my lint roller. Gathering and sorting all these strips that have been wrapping themselves around each other in baskets for months generates lots of little stray threads. And here in Boise it is still fleece season so I have to constantly roll myself. And the ironing board.

So what is it I am making? Not this. This is the reason I bought the book. When we went to the Twin Falls show we made a preliminary stop at The Gathering Place in Rupert. I mean Rupert is only 30 minutes or so farther east, so once you have invested the gas to get to Twin you may as well head for Rupert, right? I wasn't in much of a shopping mood that day, though. I only bought this book and 2 patterns the entire day. Anyway one of my traveling companions showed me this picture first thing at the shop and the book immediately had to be bought. Isn't it cute?

But what I decided to make is the quilt on the back cover.

I am truly in love with it. Now, mine will not be quite so brown as I am using a variety of dark strips. And I am not going to do the stars. I don't think the quilt needs them. If you look closely around the edges you can see where the borders fit in. This is interesting construction. Instead of doing something like setting triangles you make the borders with graduated sizes of strips. I am glad I didn't have to do the math for this quilt! The thing that is amazing is that the seams in the 5 border strips that you sew together are supposed to be offset by 3/4" and mine are coming out just that way.

This quilt has many blocks. It has the courhouse step ones like I mentioned plus plenty of log cabins. The log cabins are random browns and golds. I didn't have alot of golds either in strips or in the stash so to call some of them gold is a bit of a stretch but I think it will work out.

Here is the stack of blocks waiting to be laid out. You can see why this one is a strip eater, now can't you? I thought I would finish the borders before I started laying it out. I am anxious to see how it looks.

Stay tuned. Oh, and there are more pics from the Twin show. I just thought it was time to show you that yes, I really have been sewing!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

One thing that happens

when you post quilt show pics in multiple erratic posts is you can't remember what was already posted. I have to keep looking back at the last post. Oh, well, a small thing. Here we are back at the Twin Falls show, I thought this was a really unique basket quilt. I guess I should have taken pictures of all the baskets but I only took a few favourites.
I love the flag as basket on this block.
And I like sunflowers. Isn't it funny how things go in and out of style. I remember when it was mushrooms. Geese, owls, all kinds of things have been the thing. Recently it seems to be butterflies. Oh, and crows. Like right here.
I haven't the slightest idea why I took a picture of the middle of this quilt only. Maybe because I thought it was a great use of scraps.
This one is just plain cute.
This one is simple -- I see this bordered square everywhere especially on the "modern" blogs. This was Sandy Gervais fabric from last Christmas or maybe the Christmas before. Since I am currently over attracted to lime green I liked the quilt. I don't own this fabric though so it must have been readily available before my lime green crush.
Here is another that is just plain cute. And unusual to find a really cute little boy quilt. And it isn't cars or trucks or construction equipment!
Here is another mystery photo.
This is just not a quilt I would ever make. Maybe it was the use of the sampler squares as the border around the center medallion. Maybe it looked much different in person. In the pic the background colours go a little funny to me -- too many grayish ones perhaps? This quilter did a lot of work for this quilt, that's for sure. The center medallion has tons of pieces. And then to add applique on top of that! Although I don't own much in the way of thirties fabric I find I am always drawn to quilts made with them at shows. Maybe I should rethink my non use of them. This has to do I am sure with my split colour personality. Do you have one of those? On the one hand I love the dark primitive colours and on the other I love the clear crayon colours. They are not really reconcilable colour palettes.
Here is the whole quilt that basket is from. I like the long rectangular baskets and I really like the squared off flowers. It is just a very happy quilt. Interesting sashing treatment don't you think? You don't see alot of quilts where the sashing crosses like that. I have made one or two. It is not my favourite way to do it. But I do like the yellow colour here.
None of my comments are meant to cast negative aspersions on the quilts or quilters. I was rereading this and realized I perhaps sounded too negative. Everyone likes different things and has a different eye. And that is a good thing! I love looking at quilts whether they are to my taste or not and appreciate every quilter who has the nerve to put her quilt in a show for others to see!

I had a question from a commenter whose email address was invisible to me. The Christmas quilt in the last post is in the book "Tis the Season" by Jeanne Large & Shelley Wicks. I still haven't pulled the greens as I am knee deep in another project. Till next time.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

One of my favourite quotes

is from Ralph Waldo Emerson and it goes like this: "Inconsistency is no disgrace." Went to the Twin Falls quilt show yesterday. It is held every other year and I have never been before. It is pretty big and they had quite a few really nice quilts. I took a bunch of pictures that I will share over the next few posts. What you will notice, and what I just love, is there was no consistency as to where they put the signs on the quilts. Some on the left, some on the right, even some on the bottom. Yeah! First up we have some detail from a large quilt. I love the colours in this one. And the log cabin borders. First some little chicks. Then a flower and bee. look at that bee. Isn't she cute? I love the way the quilting kind of goes around the flower and leaves.
Here is the whole thing. yes, basically it is a chicken quilt. Look at that happy dancing chicken in blue to the left of the main block.
Oh, one more, here is the detail of the main block.
Then this Christmas one. I have this book. Makes me want to go start pulling greens right away. The stockings were sewn down with blanket stitch that was thick. I think it had been done with perle cotton. I will have to experiment with my machine to see if it can blanket stitch with perle cotton. Because you know I wouldn't want to do it by hand. It was really cute, though, so it could/might be worth the hand work.
I thought this one was really cute. (You are noticing the signs, aren't you? So far we have right, left, and right again.)
And the bear family album. I think I have seen this one before. Two of the people (out of 4) in the car to the show had made this one. That's pretty amazing don't you think?
Here is a close up. I picked this block because the Atlanta Braves are my favourite BB team even though I have never lived in Atlanta.
I love this Halloween one. The RIP tombstone that was fussy cut and put in the
center star looks great I think, I really like the addition of purple and lime green to the traditional black and orange

Halloween palette that has occurred over the past few years. I have this pattern. I have had it for years. I was going to make it for my granddaughter long ago before she had a little brother and certainly before she was 10! I like the clear colours in this one. Better than the pastels that are shown on the pattern pic. I think after seeing this one I may make it with this brighter tonality.
Wow, just out of these few pictures there are two I have the patterns for and that I would like to make. That's one way to judge the success of a show I guess. And it is the first one of the season around here. That's a happy thought. There will be more pictures to share in the next few posts.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Homespun plaids

are really something I should like better than I do. Since I love primitive quilts you would think they would really appeal to me. And I like them when other people use them. But when I do, something just doesn't click. I was having some difficulty deciding what to do next so I pulled out a Kim Diehl book and started in on my homespun stash. I do have to say that it is much improved as the blocks go together. In fact I might just end up liking this quilt. I have a couple more rows to add on and then it will be time to decide on the border. And to decide if I will add the applique to the border. I thought I had some flowers and leaves already cut out that I didn't use on another quilt (notice a pattern here?) but I have looked everywhere and cannot find them. I just know I put them "in" something. Well, I have looked "in" everything and not found them. Once I put something "in" something when we were moving and found it 7 years later! So probably there will be no applique on the border.

I did finish a little top from a Fig Tree book. I had a stack of fabric that looked really nice together I thought. Until I put the plain blocks between the houses. Then I did not like it together at all.
Oops, pictures out of order so we will have a slight digression. Have you ever made 9 patch blocks this way? I just love it as I never would get the right lengths of strips to get enough of the right combinations of light and dark
for the 3 strip wide pieces. I was always ending up with too much of the two dark with light in the middle and never enough of the two light with dak in the middle. This way you just do a two piece strip of one dark and one light and make an extra corner. I don't remember where I saw it but it is my go to method now.

For some reason blogger will not let me type in between those two pics. Well, the reason is probably that it has been just one of those weeks with nothing going the way it is supposed to. Anyway, I decided to try out the green silly string fabric between the blocks and liked it much better. And I really like the little checkerboard border. So this stack of fabrics with only one slight substitution really made a nice top I think. Of course I am partial to houses.
Usually I do not like the House of White Birches books. I am not quite sure why but there you have it. I went to a guild meeting last month and they were selling lots of old magazines for a quarter a piece. I bought a few called "Quilters World" because I had not seen them before. When I was looking through them when I got home I realized why -- they are from House of White Birches. Anyway, one of them had a quilt I liked with pretty large blocks so I pulled out another stack and started in on it. I love this Christmas tree print. I did not exactly follow the directions and I could not decide on a border.
So it has remained borderless. It was fun to put together. Mr THQ doesn't like the acid green very much. I am not so sure myself! I wish it looked as good as it was fun to sew!
There was a question in comments -- yay, I got some comments -- about the circle quilt on my last post. No, I did not use the WonderArc. I do not even know what that is. I traced circles around round things that were in my house and then cut them out. If you were to look really closely you would see that they are not exactly round. But with the dots and blanket stitching no one will ever know. At least that's the way I look at it. Others only see the flaws you point out, right, so keep your mouth shut and no one will see what looks like the biggest boo boo on the face of the earth. I am right about that, aren't I?