Friday, April 18, 2014

Friday Finish : Scraps of My Heart

My LQS, Heartstrings & Heirlooms, is having a quilt challenge. The theme is "My Favorite Things." The owner requested that employees have their quilts finished by May 1st. Below is my entry entitled "Scraps of My Heart."

This went together quickly because all of the fabrics used were scraps and already cut into squares.

So how does this fit the theme?

(1) Look closely and you will see that I fussy cut some of the fabrics to highlight some of my favorite things - quilts, flowers, sewing machine, cat, tea cup, numbers, polka dots/circles.

(2) Many of the fabrics themselves are favorites of mine.

(3) This was all made from scraps.

(4) The graphic/modern design of the quilt as a whole.

(5) The striped binding.

I also love being able to cross this project off my list ahead of schedule!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

WIP Wednesday

I've stitched up a quick quilt for a work related project. I'll share the whole quilt and the story behind it once it is finished. For now, this is the back and the binding.

The quilt isn't large enough to need all of this binding, but I bought a yard of this fabric to use specifically for binding. I figured that as long as I was making binding for this project, I'd go ahead and just make binding out of the entire yard. Now I have binding already finished for another, yet to be determined, quilt.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Ready to Make the Blocks

My scrap group meets again this week. We are not starting a new project this month so that we all have time to make more progress on what we started last month.

It took a long time, but I finally finished all 240 sets of three strips I need. Half of those need to have the star points added to them.

The above units now all have their star points so I'm ready to sew these into blocks on Wednesday.

Once I get the top finished I will update the tutorial I did for this project to include a picture of the finished top.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Time to Get Busy

After completing my first of the remaining applique blocks for the commissioned Christmas quilt I'm doing (see this post and this post), I realized that I really need to invest in some thread for this project. So I got out my new Aurifil thread card, the remaining fabric kits for the blocks and placed an order. My order arrived earlier this week.

That is 25 small spools of thread. Here they are all lined up for a group photo.

Now it is time to get busy tracing, cutting and stitching.

And I can go back and fix a couple of the pieces on the snowman that I wasn't happy with. I know it isn't noticeable in the photo, but after living with it for a couple of weeks I'm not happy with a few of the thread colors I used on him and I need to fix it. My applique skills aren't good enough to hide the fact that I didn't have the correct color thread for stitching on those pieces. It won't take me long to remove and redo, then I can do the embroidery and finish him up.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Quilts for Oncology

Our hospital has a full-time oncologist for the first time and a nice chemo office so oncology patients can get treatment here instead of having to travel outside the San Luis Valley for treatment. Within the last year I have been touched by cancer through three different people, my mom and two quilt guild members. One of the guild members is getting her treatment here and told us that they are using quilts donated by our guild members in the chemo office. These quilts stay at the hospital.

We got to talking at our recent retreat and decided to see if the oncology department could use more quilts. The answer was yes and no. The office itself has all the quilts it store/use at the moment, but they are interested in having quilts to give to patients to bring with them since most patients use more than one quilt at a time. They anticipate having more patients now that they have a full-time oncologist, like 5 to 10 new patients a month. So ... could we possibly provide them with 5 to 10 quilts a month?! And they would like to have a nice bag to put the quilts in along with some other things they give new patients (water bottle, chapstick, lotion, sunscreen, ....). The idea being that patients could carry their quilt plus some other stuff to and from their treatments.

I took it upon myself to come up with a size range for the quilts along with making up a bag pattern. After talking with some of the hospital staff as well as a chemo patient I determined that 40" to 50" wide and 50" to 60" long is the best size range. My Scrap Basket Churn Dash is 45" by 54". I finished it up last week.

It is simply quilted with an all-over loop pattern. For the back I used up the last of a tea cup print I really like.

The pattern for the Scrap Basket Churn Dash is from the Happy Zombie blog. Click here for the pattern.

For the bag I used some duck canvas and scraps from the front. Full disclosure, I had some yardage left over that I saved thinking I might use it for binding. I didn't use it for binding, but it worked out perfectly for the bag.

The tote is 16" by 16" by 5" deep and has two pockets. A good size for carrying a quilt plus a book, lunch, water bottle, wallet, etc.

I need to write up the pattern for the bag to pass out to guild members.

One quilt down! I have another finished quilt too. It needs a bag. I plan to take pictures while making the second bag to use for a tutorial that will complement the written pattern. I'll share the tutorial with you too in case you'd like to make a bag for yourself.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

This and That

I did a little "functional" sewing last week. I hemmed a pair of pants for my husband. These are Boy Scout pants, the kind where the legs zip off so they can be worn as both pants or shorts. Being able to zip off the legs made this a bit easier.

Not a very exciting project, but he was very happy with them. I haven't hemmed a pair of pants in a while. It took a lot longer than I expected. The measuring and pinning took the most time. The sewing part went quick.

Last weekend was the annual Sewing & Quilting Expo in Pueblo, Colorado. I didn't get to go last year and was hoping to go this year. It didn't work out though. Instead, I ordered some fabric from Hawthorne Threads online. Some Mad Mend I've had my eye on for a few weeks.

Spooky absolutely insisted on being the picture! I took several and some part of her was in every one. At least you can see the fabric in this one.

I just love the scissor prints so I bought some of every color way. The thimbles also caught my eye. Instead of stashing all of this I'm trying to come up with a project to use at least some of this right away. We'll see how that goes.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Reader Work

I received several nice comments on my Stars and Scrappy Stripes Tutorial - thank you!

And two readers sent me photos of their first block.

This one is from Linda:

She is using up scraps left over from a Civil War quilt.

And this one is from Gina in Missouri:

She is using blues with white stars.

Both are fantastic! Thank you ladies for sharing. If anyone else has made a block (or two) and would like to share a photo, just send it to me. You can contact me directly by clicking on the "view my complete profile" link at the top right of this page, bottom of the "about me" section.