Thursday, September 18, 2014

PMQG Medallion Progress

Wowwza this thing is getting big.  It is now 60 1/2 inches by 60 1/2 inches square.  I have always thought square quilts are a duck of a different color.  I wonder what the point of a large square quilt is???  It would be odd to turn this square medallion into a rectangle at the last minute so it will remain square.  It has such symmetry it will need to be square but it still seems a bit odd to me.  Have you ever made a large square quilt before?  This is a first for me but as it is something that the whole group of modern quilters at Portland Modern Quilt Guild are doing, I am going to assume it is going to be okay and not just plain weird having such a large square quilt.  I guess it will make a great picnic blanket, right???

Better start planning a darker background for the back of this quilt if that is it's future.

Anyhoo now that I have that off my chest here is a peak at my top as of today.  I am finally caught up on it.  Really like how it is coming together.  I think it certainly does have a bit of the modern look in it.  Loving the black and white.  Heck loving it all!!!

My quilt model was a little too short and her arms just way too short but you get the gist of it and I am lucky to have gotten a clear picture at all since she couldn't stop laughing.

Keep Stitchin'

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Retro Betty

I have the last of the blocks from the Sew Kitschy BOM from Kristy at Quiet Play completed.  I will be linking it up over at her blog as these blocks are all turning out so cute you will want to see them all.  I love her Betty.  I was looking at Pinterest under vintage kitchens this weekend for ideas on how to finish these blocks and might have found something I like that might just work with these blocks.  Here is the last of the series that I just completed this weekend.

My kitchen is brown and greens so this is going to look fantastic in my kitchen when I get it done.  I need to keep the finished wall hanging on the smaller side so it will fit my wall space without having to take down any of my existing pictures but I think it can be done.  The fabric in the picture hanging on Betty's kitchen wall is from one of the charms I recently won from Alida from Tweety Loves Quilting and just seemed perfectly retro for Betty's kitchen!

The blocks are looking so great together so far.  This year I colored in a small version of the layout before even starting this in January and the blocks look so much more cohesive together. Thank you Kristy for letting us see the plan for all the blocks ahead of time!!! I could never have gotten the correct spread of color without it.

Believe it or not I think September is going to see me catch up on all of my BOMs. Hopefully by the end of this week I will be caught up on the PMQG Medallion Along.  Then on to the September block of the Quilt Doodle Doodle and I will be caught up :)

Wishing you all the best week!

Keep Stitchin'

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Koi Pond

After a lot of time picking out fabrics and messing with them, I settled on making a husky dog overlooking the koi fish in September's Garden BOM block designed by Janeen from Quilt Art Designs.

On the first try, I had larger rocks at the edge of the pond but decided to swap them out.

I think I made the right decision. I would rather of had bricks but was afraid it would be impossible to keep them heading in the right direction on all the pieces under the dog. I thought the large rocks were too distracting but honestly I think it is the rock colors as the smaller ones do the same thing.  Not sure if my eye being drawn to them is good or bad???

Another great block to add to the garden quilt and already looking forward to seeing what October may bring to the garden.  Time to start thinking about how to put these all together soon also...

Keep Stitichin'

Saturday, September 6, 2014

It's A Sister Swap Thing

Quilts From My Crayon Box

This summer I had the pleasure of taking part in the 'It's a Sister Thing Swap'' that Michele from Quilts from my Crayon Box hosted for the second year.  I mistakenly didn't take part last year and almost had myself convinced it would be hard to make time for it this year with my busy summer schedule.  Luckily, I committed and found time because it was a blast.  If you missed my earlier post about what I received from my assigned 'sister' here is a picture of the great treasures that Mary from Needled Mom made for me and here is my previous post when I received them.

She did a wonderful job making me feel so spoiled and pampered!  It was so fun opening up all the presents she had individually wrapped and ohhhing and ahhhing and with delight with each new find.

While Mary was busy stalking my blog and choosing what to spoil me with I was busy stalking Grace's blog City Mouse Quilter.  I read her blog front to back but a couple key points struck me immediately.
1. She loves going to the beach but needed a nice quilted tote bag to take with her.
2. She loves Kaffe Fassett fabrics but seemed to be collecting them and I can relate they are so gorgeous to oogle at who wants to cut into them.  I'm in the same boat and hadn't really put them together into a project yet so that was added to my to do list.
3. She is really into Civil War fabrics and reproductions and I happened to have some that I didn't like---(they'd make great hand me downs to my new sister) 
4. She likes Spearmint tea and Pumpkins --- never found the Spearmint tea and ran short of time for a pumpkin project and although fall is fast approaching it just wasn't the right time in the peak of summer.
5. She would love to go on a Bonnie Hunter trip but fears flying.  I so related to that.  After 2011 I just lack the confidence to board a plane but would love to travel.  I also would love to see my grandchildren grow up so it is safer to stay on the ground.

With the above facts, I set to work on a pillow top cover using my Kaffe Fassett fabrics.  I had seen this pattern in the June 2005 issue of The American Patchwork and Quilting magazine that Ricky Tims designed called 'St. Elmo's Fire'.  It is a paper pieced pattern that I envisioned would showcase the Kaffe fabrics wonderfully.  I have never made a pillow cover before and must say I might be addicted to them now.  I can't wait to find the time to make a few of these babies for me.

Here's what attracted my attention but as you can see it looked a little crazy and was in need of a little modernization. Here is how it translated into a pillow for Grace featuring Kaffe fabrics.

I really think it looks much better with the one, neutral color for the background. It helps the Kaffe fabric's be the stars they deserve to be.

Next I set to work designing a tote bag for Grace. She lives near Cape Neddick least I think she does so I tried to draw it out in one corner of the bag.  I added some ships to the harbor.

On the backside of the bag, I put her name and a lobster that I got the pattern of Janeen from Quilt Art Designs.  I shrunk the lobster down a bit so it would fit my area but it did make it a little tougher to paper piece but I somehow managed.  Not the best decision but it worked out.  Grace loves her lobster and I had to have him on there.  I added a zip pocket to the inside and a divided pocket on the inside too for stashing things in there where you might want to find them quickly.  I based my bag on this free tutorial you can find here.  I substituted my panel for the canvas it called for but otherwise followed this pattern and added pockets to the inside.

The pocket has little mice on it and it just stuck me as appropriate for the City Mouse Quilter but honestly it never crossed my mind when I was making it...he hee hee.  In the mood to truly spoil Grace, as August 27th was her 65th birthday, I decided to add a Journal to my list of must makes for her. 

I added the Tim Holtz metal piece to it.  It reads---encourage your hopes not your fears---
I thought this to be great advice but not always easy to manage.  The girl was an orphan block I made a few months ago for a project I am still having trouble getting off the runway and probably will be junking so I thought it would make the perfect journal cover. She was inspired by art from Andrea of Southendgirlart that I found on Pinterest and is one of my few attempts at sketching on fabric.

Last but not least I threw in the hand me down fabrics to pass along to Grace and a new pen to start her off journaling with.  Happy Birthday Grace and best wishes for a great year ahead!  I really enjoyed being your stalker sister this Summer and passing on some goodies to you.

A big heartfelt hug and many thanks to Mary and Michele for making this swap so special for me!!!
Bless you both for helping to make my busy Summer extra special and full of smiles and creativity :)

Keep Stitchin'
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