Monday, August 29, 2016

Up Next - - - A Real Challenge

I do love a challenge.   My friend's parents received this quilt as a wedding gift (I think) sometime in the 1960's (I believe.)  I need to find out a little more about the history, but it was obviously a much loved quilt. 

It was definitely much used.

 And is much worn!

I know for sure that orange and turquoise were popular colors to use in quilts in the 1960's.  I'm not so sure about brown.  I need to look through some quilt encyclopedias for the name of this block.  I don't think I've seen it before.  

The owners want to keep it for sentimental reasons, but it's in pretty rough shape.  Pattie said I can do whatever I want, so I'm thinking of using the best parts of it to make a wall hanging.  Step one is to deconstruct.

The fabric is very fragile.  It ripped when I was simply spreading it out to get a photo.  

 I'll need to come up with a way to protect it from further damage once it's reconstructed, but I don't want to change it so much that it's no longer the same quilt.   I'm nervous but excited about this project.  Aren't you glad you get to watch?

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

A Pulse Quilt Finish

My Pulse Quilt is in the mail making this seven finishes for me this year.  Check out #quiltsforpulse  on Instagram to see all the beautiful quilts that are being made for this effort.   Last week I made the backing using the last of a bolt of white fabric I had.  It didn't stretch quite far enough (again!) so I needed to add a few strips.  I thought this fat quarter would be perfect considering all the great colors in the top .....

..... but, when I showed the completed backing to Hubby he smiled.  That might sound okay, but normally he gives me a lot of positive feedback and praise.  I knew I needed to rethink it.

I cut out those strips and threw them into the strip basket.  The print I really wanted to use from the front only had a bunch of 7-inch squares and assorted strips left, but I pieced it so I could have large enough sections to use.  That's a lot of seams!

Straight-line quilting on the background with white thread and stippling on the heart with matching colors was just the look I was going for.

It made sort of a shadow of a heart on the back, which I especially like.

The back looks a lot better without those dark strips, doesn't it?

Isn't the binding perfect?  Hubby helped pick that out, too.  He definitely has a good eye.

I had a great selection of Black and White prints available to use.   

So now My Pulse Quilt is in the hands of the United States Postal Service, winging its way to the Orlando Modern Quilt Guild.  

I only hope it brings some small amount of comfort to whoever receives it.   I definitely made it with love.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

My Pulse Quilt

Whenever there is a disaster of any kind quilters do what they do best.  They make donation quilts.  That's the best way we can extend comfort to people we don't know and will never meet.   Right now there is an effort underway to make quilts for the survivors and families of the victims of the mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida.  The Orlando Modern Quilt Guild is organizing the drive for donation quilts.  Information can be found here.

I made blocks for a group quilt my friend Teajuana is making .....

 ..... and, then I started making a quilt of my own to donate.  This is just a tiny part of the black & white stash I decided to use.

I cut 4 1/2" squares and started sewing them into rows.

Most people are putting a heart of some kind on their quilts.  I wanted my heart to be a little different from everyone else (naturally), and I also wanted it to have some significance so I sketched out a broken heart, chose colors, and got busy.  I even set up a sewing corner at the beach condo when we went on vacation.

I'm pretty happy with how it turned out, though I think I could have had more interest between the purple and blue fabrics.  ( I know.  Quilters aren't supposed to point out the negatives about their quilts.  But, anyway.)

When I originally sketched out this heart on graph paper, I thought it would be soooooo simple.  Squares and Half-Square-Triangles.  Easy.  (This is sounding familiar - I think I have set out to do a simple design with HST's and gotten into trouble before.....)  After a lot of ripping, re-cutting, and re-stitching I had SO many components left over it was ridiculous.  I could probably make another project with them! lol

Hopefully, I can get the backing made and get this finished quickly.  I've already submitted the form saying I would mail it ten days from now.  Does that make me kinda crazy or just really confident?


Monday, August 8, 2016

Triforce Quilt

I have been wanting to write about this quilt since I started it, but I didn't want a certain someone to see it.  That's been happening a lot this past year.  Not only secret quilts, but now that I think of it, purple quilts, too.   Thank goodness for friends throwing purple scraps my way once in a while, otherwise I would never be able to make quilts for all the people whose favorite color is purple.  I've been wanting to make this quilt for a long time.  I actually bought the pattern in December, 2013 from Eric the Quilter's etsy shop.  So getting around to it took over three and a half years, but once I started I finished in less than 3 months.  

 The original plan was to make a wall-hanging, and I had the piecing for that pretty much finished in a couple of weeks.

Then, though, I decided to make it at least a throw size, and maybe even a twin.  That meant ripping out all those setting triangles on the bottom edge.  What fun!

I sewed and sewed, and before I knew it the top was quite a bit longer.  I still wasn't happy though because it looked too long and skinny to me.  To add to the width I would have to rip out all those setting triangles along the sides.  NO. WAY!   

How about adding some borders?  I still had plenty of purple left.

I've never worked with a quilt that had all bias edges so I stay-stitched it first to keep it from stretching   My favorite marking tool for darks really came in handy!  Love my Fons & Porter Mechanical Pencil with White Lead!

Marking and trimming made it a lot easier to add the borders.

From this point on it should have been super easy.  Hmmm, not so much.  I wanted so much for all the squares in the borders to look balanced that I made it fit and ended up with ripply borders.

I figured if I quilted a little heavier in the borders, the fullness might "quilt out" though.  Right?  No.  Wrong again.  I wanted this done!  I even took it with me on vacation and set up my own personal sewing area so I could work on it when I got tired of the pool and the beach.

I quilted two sides and wasn't happy, so I ripped it all that quilting out.  Then, I actually took the borders off.  I've never done that before on a quilt that was mostly quilted.  

I put my "Jack the Seam Ripper" to good use!  If you need a new ripper or a really special one for a gift, check his out.  They are great!

So, I removed at least two inches from each side, reattached it, got it quilted, and finally got to my favorite part - binding!

By the way, isn't that another great backing fabric?  It's from the "Mostly Manor" collection by Victoria Findlay Wolfe.  I bought it from my fave Fat Quarter Shop.

My friend, Penny, made another really beautiful label for me using a downloaded pattern of the Triforce I had purchased online.   I love that I can find just about anything I want online!  (Not sure Hubby feels the same way about my online shopping.....)

So, it's quilted, and bound .....

..... and delivered.  I feel pretty confident that this will be a much-loved quilt.  I sure put love into it!