Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Rainbow Radiance: A Finished Quilt

When my scrap buckets were overflowing I decided to make several colour-block slabs and then make one gigantic scrappy quilt using those blocks. They were a blast to make and when I found myself lacking in some of the colours (beige and lavender in particular) my quilty friends jumped into action. If you check the lavender block there is some very precious Tula Pink Parisville from my friend C. That's friendship, people.

The plan because of the size and shape was to make the quilt an outdoor quilt, designed for the many picnics and play events my eldest daughter engages in all summer long. I chose a colourful and inexpensive thicker weight (and looser weave) fabric from Ikea as the backing and used (mostly) polyester thread to make the quilting stronger. I also did machine binding instead of hand binding (which I hate because it doesn't look as good as hand binding but it would make it much more secure for heavy play).

For the binding I used up bits of leftover binding from other quilts and it worked out perfectly!

Here is Rainbow Radiance:

I am tempted to take an individual picture of each block so you could revel in the gems in each and every colour block. It is a delight for me to remember each fabric and point out "There's Lotta! There's Lizzy House!"

This is the backing. I was worried about the brown that was in this print but I find this picture reassuring because you really don't notice the brown.

This shows you the binding a little bit more. It is colourful and perfect.

Doesn't it look perfect for a summer picnic?

Here is the thicker weave that is the backing fabric.
I opted to not use batting for the first time ever. The backing is thick and heavy already so I wanted it to not get too heavy and I thought it would dry more easily when it gets damp in the grass. I feel mixed about the end result. It is already VERY heavy as a quilt but the batting would have prevented the colour of the backing from being seen through the lighter colours. It also would have kept the stitches more even.

I also opted to quilt each block with a different pattern, some free motion and some with the walking foot. The size and weight of this quilt made that a giant pain many times but I powered through. I'm happier with some blocks than others in terms of quilting. It adds an interesting texture to the quilt for sure.

I am also glad that I have another WIP off my list!

Friday, 4 May 2018

Pineapples: A Finished Quilt

I finished a quilt for my mother-in-law using the pattern Pineapple Farm by Elizabeth Hartman. I showed her the pattern before I checked out complicated it would be and...guys, don't do that. Check how much you're committing to before it is too late! It was complex and time consuming but my mother-in-law is worth it so I persevered.  

The end result is pretty awesome, and she definitely loves the quilt, but I can't pretty much promise I will never make another one of these ones!

Here is Pineapples:
There was a fresh layer of (spring) snow when I took the pictures which worked out for me because quilts look great on the white background!

I did a crosshatch quilting at varying widths.

My little helper was very useful holding up the quilt. This is the quilt in totality. Warm, mostly red colours as per my MIL's request.

I LOVE this backing I found on extreme clearance at Sew Sisters (I think it was $4.99/m!). I used the backing fabric for the binding as well. It reminds me of the inside of a pineapple.

She sure added cuteness to the photo shoot.
I'm really happy with the end results and I am glad my MIL is too. It will be appreciated and loved which makes all the hours of work worth it!

Linking to Finish it Up Friday with Crazy Mom Quilts.

Friday, 16 March 2018

Kitties: A Finished Quilt

A former co-worker recently had a baby boy. When I asked about the colours of his nursery she let me know that she was keeping the same colours her daughter had, teal and grey. The daughter received Meow Mix from me when she was born, and so I jumped on making another teal and grey kitty quilt (they love cats at their house!)

I also had the perfect fabric on hand- a fat eighth bundle of Sarah Watt's line Cat Lady she did for Cotton + Steel. 

I used some Alison Glass feathers and some other neutrals from my stash to even out the colours, and I love this pattern for baby quilts. I think this might be my sixth (?) quilt using this pattern. 

I love this cat twisted to lick himself. So typically cat.

The back is a bunch of a Cat Lady print I had in my stash plus some other leftover bits. Love using up little pieces on the back!!
I will be sending this to the parents (and a gift for big sister too!) and I hope they find it charming. 

Hooking up with Finish It Up Friday with Crazy Mom Quilts.

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

I Swear I've Been Sewing

Even though it has been crickets here on my blog, I have been steadily working on my mother-in-law's Pineapple Farm quilt and making real progress. After what seemed like forever I got all of the pineapples done:
I finished all the red pineapples first and then added in the orangey and yellow ones.
 I then had to add the sashing which was a little tricky at first. There are a LOT of bias seams which meant they were a bit rippled, so I followed the rules very carefully and pinned every 3" (which is ridiculous) and then sashing went on MUCH better.
My cat was his usual helpful self.

Smooth sashing. That's better.

This was when I had all the centre sashing done and just needed to add the borders, which are now done.
 I also went on a shop hop with friends on Tuesday (as we are all in education and this is our March Break) and I did a LOT of damage.
There were some awesome deals. I even have a plan for many of these.
And I completed some lined drawstring bags to gift to my nephews at Easter. They are filled with stickers and some treats.
Next up on my agenda is finishing this pineapple quilt and then on to finishing the next WIP. My goal, if you remember from my first January post, is to have no WIPs by the end of 2018. Wish me luck!


Sunday, 4 February 2018

Pineapple Pergatory

When I saw Elizabeth Hartman's new pattern Pineapple Farm I immediately thought of my mother-in-law and sent her a picture. Her enthusiastic response had me delighted because she is usually quite reserved. I didn't pause to consider just how much work Elizabeth Hartman's patterns tend to be. This one is no exception.

After my mother-in-law directed me to a colour scheme- rusty reds and terracottas (so out of my own comfort zone) I got to work collecting a sufficient stack of fabrics. Then I started cutting. And cutting and cutting. 

Below is the cutting involved for three 10x10 squares that will make two pineapple bodies. It is painstakingly slow work with very precise tiny measurements (like one 7.5" x 1.5" piece and one 1.5" x 3.25" piece and...you get the idea).
These three cut pieces end up being arranged in a very specific and complicated arrangement (see below).

This is what the pieces look like when arranged just so. The diagram is quite complex and time consuming to make sure you do everything in just the right way.

There are a lot of pieces in this quilt. This was me cutting 400 tiny 1.5" x 3.5" rectangles.

When you rotate the block after it has been sewn together and trim it down to size, this is what you get on the right. I still need to add the corner pieces to make it more pineapple-shaped and make the green leafy top.

This was another block ready to sew together. I came up with a system
This is part of my system- I arrange the two layouts on the large square ruler and on my portable, turning cutting mat and then transfer them beside my sewing machine to carefully assemble before moving on to the next pair.
I have been making progress, but there will be 80 pineapples in the lap size and even after I trim them all I have to add tiny squares to the corners to give them the shape (4 squares per block for 320 squares worth) AND I still need to make all the tops of all the pineapples...so I have a long way to go. My deadline is April when my mother-in-law returns from six months in Florida. I should have plenty of time if I can keep up my motivation!

Monday, 29 January 2018

Sunshine Menagerie: A Finished Quilt

I have had a fat eighth bundle of Bungle Jungle sitting around for four years, since I made quilts for twins that were arriving for close friends. When I found out that my cousin was expecting a little boy  I thought it was a great opportunity to pull out the fat eighth, pull out the turquoise and yellow colour way and put together a sweet and simple baby quilt for her.

Here is Sunshine Menagerie:
The squares are 8x8 with some squares made of two pieces for some visual interest. I added one other yellow print from my stash because I didn't have quite enough from the fat eighth bundle.

The quilting is very simple straight-ish lines on either side of the seams, plus a double line down the centre (vertically not horizontally) because 8x8 blocks are quite large to leave without some additional quilting. I want this one to hold up in the wash! 

The back is a yellow I had in my stash with a strip of this Joel Dewberry print on the side. That same herringbone print is also the entire binding.
Simple and sweet and on the way to a new baby for tummy time and snuggles!

Friday, 5 January 2018

Festive Forest: A Finished Quilt

I am not one for seasonal quilts (I think they should be able to be used year round) and I am not one for traditional Christmas colours (our colours are dark blue, turquoise and silver) but when I saw that Violet Craft was releasing a green, red, white and gold version of Brambleberry Ridge it just spoke to me. I used a tutorial that was free (see my previous blog entry on the process). I ended up being quite delighted with the end result and my daughters were using it before I even finished the binding. Maybe it can spend the non-Christmas season in the basement?

I didn't finish until after Christmas (because who has time to sew down some binding in the middle of the chaos that is multiple Christmas events?) but it was still within the time my Christmas tree was up so I consider that a win!

Here is Festive Forest:

It sure looks pretty against the white snow! There are two blocks that are actually made up of four mini trees. I love the variation it adds.


My husband hates the wonky nature of the improv trees, but what does he know? ;)

I didn't have quite enough of this pretty red print from Brambleberry Ridge (I guessed on the yardage when I bought it which is typical me) so I put in a pit of this Laurie Wisbrun red fabric that I had in my stash.

I used this loopy pattern to quilt it because it was quite fast and because my initial plan did NOT work out. I just went with it. I quite like it!
And there is my first finish of 2018! Hopefully many more to go!

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday with Crazy Mom Quilts!