Monday, January 28, 2013

One Block Wonder Finished!!

  So my first one block wonder quilt is finished!  Yay!!!   I can't believe how good it turned out.  Sometimes I amaze myself :)  The quilt is really not my colors but I can appreciate the beauty.  I decided to go for just a black border with a little strip of the original fabric that I had left over.  The quilt ended up being 52" x 64", so a pretty decent throw size.

  When it came to top stitching it, again this was my first one block wonder.  I looked for some ideas online, to see what other people had done.  I ended up going custom.  I did a circle array flower in each hexagon, which fit nicely.  Then I did each border with it's own design. 

  I decided to use turquoise thread on the whole quilt, even the black borders.  It turned out nice but next time I would use black thread to blend in on the black fabric.  Using colored thread on black makes your mistakes very evident. 


  Even though it was just a throw size it took me quite a few days to top stitch.  I do got a little 20 month old at home though.  She really doesn't like to share my attention, which may be the culprit for it taking so long.  It's a wonder I get anything done:)

  So here it is... It is actually a very easy quilt to make, if you don't mind sewing tonnes of triangles.
 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Plush Backing on Quilts

  Ever since me and my mom got our long arm we have been experimenting with using plush fleece backings on our quilts.  We just buy the full/queen blankets and don't have to worry about seams.   When using this backing, batting is not required which is a plus.  After we did our first quilt, we were hooked, and have continued to use it on a lot of our quilts.  You have to be careful when loading it on your machine, it's very important not to stretch it.  If you stretch it, it will bounce back when you take it off your machine.  Another plus is that it's not as stiff as a traditional quilt, better to snuggle into.

Monkey Design
 Large Flower Design
 Paisley Design
 Double Posie Design
   Feather Design
 
  The downside to this backing is when binding you get a little bit of a wiggly affect sometimes, it dulls your needle faster, and I'm still not sure how it holds up compared to a cotton fabric back.  It seems like it would only be suitable for an overall edge to edge pantograph design. 
 
  Here's a couple quilts with minky backing. When using minky you do have to use batting though, because it's thinner.

   

Monday, January 21, 2013

Fabric Panel One Block Wonder

  I purchased a Michael Miller Fairy Panel from fabric.com.  I was curious to see if it would work for a one block wonder.  I liked the colors in the panel and thought it would be easy to line up the pattern.  When it arrived I was worried about how much solid color there was but thought I'd try it out anyways.  It was still a 24" repeat.   
 

  When lining up the fabric I tried, but you kinda just have to hope for the best in the middle.  It worked out pretty good.  You need flat pins to hold your fabric together. Your ruler always bumps around with the usual style pins with the ball on the end.  I still don't have a true triangle ruler so I used the template on my cutting board again.  Sometimes you just got to work with what you have.  The only thing that sucks is you have so many cut marks in the same spot, which might wear out your mat quicker.  I got 14  3" strips out of the panels. 


  Each strip cut 11 triangle bundles.  So that's  924 triangles...yikes!!! But a lot I think will be unusable like this beauty....


   My husband thinks eventually I should make a one block wonder quilt with all those unusable, kinda creepy hexagons, all those feet and eyeballs.  Seems like a lot of work for something so ugly but a good joke gift :)

   I keep all my ends because they might come in handy if I want to square off my quilt later.



   While sewing them together I was disappointed with a lot of them, but I kept trucking on thinking they would come in handy for the overall design. 

  I'm planning a sweeping look, green to yellow to blue.  Here's a few examples of the kaleidoscopes...   

 
  It will take me awhile to sew them all together obviously, with there being over 900, so until next time...

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Hexagon Quilt- Michael Miller Fabric- Lush Collection by Patti Young


My first attempt at a hexagon quilt... Wish me luck...

  I started out with 11 Michael Miller fabrics from the Lush collection by Patty Young, and 1 from a Valorie Wells collection that matched (the orange one).  I bought all my fabric at fabric.com.  I used about 21" of each fabric and cut 4 - 5 1/4"  strips so I could whip them through my accuquilt GO! cutter. 

 
  One by one I put them through the machine. You can fold them over 3 times to make a 4 double layer cut, you end up with 8 - 5" hexagons per strip.  (There actually 4.33" wide and 5" high.)
 
 
  The waste after the hexagons are cut is forming a lot of triangles,  I'm going to try to incorporate into a quilt in the future.


  I ended up with 384 hexagons.


 
  First I decided the order of my fabrics. I just tried to keep the solids and white background fabrics apart. 
 
 
  I laid them out on the floor just to get an idea of what it would look like, before I started sewing them together. 
 
 
  My original plan was to do a throw quilt but I had some extra fabric so I jumped to a twin size instead.  My quilt would be 15 hexagons across by 20 hexagons down.  So 300 hexagons total.  My hexagon quilt kits on etsy actually come with 520 hexagons for the twin but for mine I'll add some borders to get the desired size.
 
  I embarrassingly make terrible drawings when I make a quilt to go by.  I give the fabrics numbers or letters then I do the math for pairings and such, this way I can sit at my machine longer and do some bulk sewing.  Then I lay it out and fill in the rest for my rows.  I have a little munchkin at home that likes to throw my fabric all over the place (including the garbage sometimes).  So I try to keep the fabric off the ground. 
 
 
  Sewing the rows was a breeze, only took me a few hours. Then came the hard part sewing the rows together...  There is a couple different techniques to sew the hexagons together.  This apparently was my learning quilt... But it did turn out pretty good.  It took me quite a few days to get them together, doing a row here and there when I had time.  It's finicky work similar to the apple core quilt.


 
  My quilt ended up being 55" x 65", so with some borders I'm hoping for a quilt around 75"x 85".  Maybe I could even incorporate all those triangles left over from the accuquilt cutting.
 


 

 
 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Tumbler Quilt Finished

  I went and top stitched my tumbler quilt.  I love going and picking out the design and thread to tie everything together.  I decided because it was kind of a kid themed quilt I'd put minky on the back.  Minky is a little tricky to work with on a long arm machine, you have to make sure it doesn't stretch.  If you do stretch it, when you take it off the machine it bounces back, and isn't too pretty. 


  I chose a light green thread.  When working with minky or a plush backing the thread isn't that noticeable on the back, but still shows up a bit.


  My original plan was to do an overall edge to edge pattern, but I ended up going row by row with a flower border pattern.  In the end it looks like an edge to edge anyways. 


 


   Normally you steam out the bunches when your top stitching but your not suppose to iron minky... so I have a couple flat spots I hope bounce back.



  In the end I think it turned out pretty dang good!  I'm definitely going to do another tumbler quilt soon. But right now I have 2 more quilts waiting to be top stitched so until next time....



 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Renae's Quilts

   So along with my mother and I, my sister Renae is also an avid quilter. Unfortunately she lives far away so we share quilting projects and ideas from afar. This past Christmas she brought some quilt tops and we top stitched 3 quilts in 3 days :) She has a very distinct taste in her fabrics and designs.  I am always jealous of the beautiful quilts she creates.  Here's a taste of some of her creations...
 
 
 
 Hexagon Quilt
Top Stitched Meandering Feather Pattern
                   back (above)
 
 
 
Fandango Circle Quilt 
Top Stitched Feather Edge to Edge
                            back (above)
This quilt was very labour intensive and she handstitched around each circle.
 
 
 Stripe Quilt
Top Stitched Meandering Feather Shadow Pattern
 

Triangle Paisley Quilt
Top Stitched Paisley Edge to Edge
                                             back (above)
 
 
 
Zigzag Quilt
Top Stitched Feather Swirl Pattern

                                                                                          back (above)