Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Designing with EQ7

I love playing with colors and designs in EQ7. I recently tried designing a One Block Wonder quilt and needed to have a way of separating the blocks as I am using a blue/white print with only a 7 inch repeat. It's amazing how many different blocks I am getting from this fabric.
So design #1 was simply adding white triangles between the hexagons.
This looked better on paper than on my design wall. The white was just to bright and detracted from the hexagon blocks, plus it just looked boring.
I liked the way the white stars appeared as a secondary pattern.
So I went back to my computer and played around with adding blue triangles to create blue and white stars. I liked this, and since I only had 5 rows completed with Design 1, I decided to rip the rows apart and switch to this pattern.
This time I had the 5 rows put together and realized that once again the design simply was not speaking to me.
But I do love that diamond shape that is appearing between the stars!


Alright! I think. This is definitely "THE ONE". Once again I have to rip out some rows, and reconstruct the firs 5 rows. I also am not going to mess with the design anymore...or so I thought.
My next fatal move is to look at some quilts at the York County Quilt show that included awesome applique designs. I just love applique, and then it hits me....this quilt need applique..that would make it so interesting. Hmmm.... But I have 7 rows done now...surely I won't even consider redoing the design ! Ok so applique on the borders, that's what I will do. But no, I want to use my print fabric on the borders to show the fabric that I used to create all the blocks.
And here it is....my FINAL design.inwill do some kind of applique in that white diamond. The diamond measures around 30" wide in the middle and 45" tall, so plenty of space to do some fun applique. Have to come up with a pattern and decide if I want to keep it all blue/white/silver or add a splash of color. I now have 9 of the 15 rows completed and there is no turning back.
Here is a picture of my progress so far and a closeup of the blocks. These were taken In my sewing room at night, and the light is not so good, but at least you Have an idea of how it is progressing. Only shows 7 rows... But I have two more that I will need to use in the bottom of the quilt.
Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses Blocks

I have been posting my blocks as I complete them as a kind of timeline for how long it is taking me to make these blocks. It has been awhile since I last posted, and during that time I finished ten more blocks. Sooooooo....lots of pictures follow. I now have 41 blocks completed out of 56 needed for the Queensize quilt. I see the light at the end of this tunnel. To be honest, this is one journey I will be sad to finish, as I have enjoyed each and everyone of the blocks, from searching for fabrics, matching up fabrics for each block and the making the block. I just wish I had kept a list of all the different shops I have bought fabric!

I noticed on some of the pictures, I have them turned sideways. I started to fix that, but you know, some may end up in my quilt that way too! I started out using only reproduction fabrics, but got bored with all the dull colors, so had to add some brighter tones now now then.

Thanks for stopping by,

Teresa

 

P

 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Stack n'Whack Pinwheels

Finally, it's done! Making the pinwheels for this quilt were fun. You never knew what what the block would look like until you finished sewing it together.
I wanted to quilt it so the pinwheels would stand out, so I chose to do that pebblely looking quilting. What was I thinking???? It took days (weeks) to do, but I sure got some practice with free motion quilting.
I stitched in the ditch around the pinwheels and then all the rest of the quilting from the back side. It was the only way I could tell where I had quilted, the thread blended in so closely with the background.
I am including a picture of the back, so you can see the quilting, but don't look too close.



I have finished some more Patchwork of the Crosses, bringing my total to 30 blocks now. I need 56, so 26 more to go! Following are the pictures of my newest blocks. Thanks for stopping by,






Saturday, May 17, 2014

Stack-n-Whack fun

I have been having so much fun playing with Maxine Rosenthal's technique for the "One Block Wonder" quilt.

I pulled this image aff Amazon.com and I purchased the Kindle version of the book for $9.99 which is great to take shopping for fabrics. I must tell on myself though. I was looking for the book for over an hour one day, had tore my sewing area all up trying to remember where I had put it, even had my husband looking in my car and his truck. I called a friend to see if she remembered when I had it last, and she asks, " you mean the one on your iPad?" Oh yea, that's the one! Boy, did I feel dumb.

This is the first quilting book I have downloaded, and it won't be the last. Cheaper than a paper copy and takes us no room on my bookshelf!

This is the fabric that I chose to use, mainly because I love the pattern and I wanted a table runner out of this for my dining room. The repeat is only 8 inches, which I was afraid would be too small to get a good variety of blocks, but since it is not going to be a big quilt, I decided to give it a try.


Here is a sample of some of the blocks I made. They are half blocks right now since you sew the half block together in rows, and when you sew the rows together you get the entire hexagon block. This way there are no in-set seams :)

This is so much fun as you never know what you will get until you sew the block together and each one is different.

Of course, if you use a more fabric with a bigger repeat and more colors, your blocks will be even more unique, but for now, I am very happy with this look.

Tuesday I am taking a Stack-n-Whack class my guild is sponsoring where we will make pinwheel stars. Let the fun begin...I can't wait to get started!

 

I recently took a needle turn appliqué class from Joyce Walton, York County Quilters Guild. This was a great class and even though I have been doing needle turn appliqué for years, seems you can always learn something new and improve your skills by taking a class and learning what other successful quilters do. The class covered everything from fabric choice, the kind of needles and thread to use and embellishing your appliqué with embroidery, silk ribbon and beading.

I had quilted my piece, but felt it just was missing something, so I added the beading around the edge. The bow is silk ribbon that I tied around the stem, mashed flat and then appliquéd...something very new for me to try.

 


Last, but not least, I thought I would share with you my newest Patchwork of the Crosses blocks. Of everything I am working, I think this is my favorite project. English Paper Piecing is something I find so relaxing and satisfying. I have already picked out my next EPP project which will be Castle Wall, but I have always to go on this one first.

Thanks for stopping by, and here are the pictures,

Teresa

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Using painters tape to mark quilting lines

Painters tape is one of my favorite quilt marking tools when hand quilting straight lines. I am sure many of you use this technique, but thought I would share how I lay this out with those of you who may not have tried it. I have nit used this in machine quilting, but I am sure it would work as well with the machine too, I would just be careful not to sew over the tape as it could gunk up your machine.
To put down the first piece to tape, it is important to make sure you have it straight, as all the other strips will be measured from that first strip.
I use the 45 degree angle on my ruler to line up on the outer edge of a border if I am wanting a diagonal line across the quilt. In this quilt that is the outer light blue border. The yellow block in the middle is set on point, and it will line up with one of the straight lines on the ruler.
Notice the tape on the ends of the ruler? That is to hold the ruler in place as I lay down the strips of tape.
One I have the first tape strip down, it is just a matter of lining up the ruler with the tape edge and adding another strip. I am spacing these 1" apart as my tape is 1" wide, but you could do them closer are further apart as you prefer.
I will quilt on both sides of the tape.



And here is the quilt all marked and ready to quilt. This is a small wall hanging, so I taped the entire thing.
The sunshine was shining bright into my dining room when I took this picture which explains the shading on the quilt. It had been days on end since we had seen that kind of sunshine, so I decided to leave the picture as is.
It is fun as I quilt to pull the the tape off as I finish a row and see my nice straight lines. Also a good way to see how much you have done, and yet to go.

I close with a picture of my sweet granddaughter, Tori. She was smiling at her Momma. The quilt she is sitting on is one I made for my mother. It is hand quilted as Momma did not believe it was a quilt if you machine quilted it..old school all the way. She was a great quilt maker and made many quilts for the family. When I gave her this quilt, she said it was the only quilt anyone had ever made for her. I miss you, Momma.

Thanks for stopping by,
Teresa

Friday, February 14, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses - Fabric Grid

Nothing like three days off work and being snow bound in the house to give you time to sew. I am enjoying these days, doing a lot of hand sewing, reading, napping and watching movies. Is this what retirement is like?

I have just about finished the PotC blocks that I precut, and need to cut out some more. It is a little overwhelming to try to pick out fabrics unless you can see the ones you have already used and how you used then. I am not trying to only use a fabric once, but I would like to only use it once in the same place on a block.

So I came up with this grid and it helps tremendously. I have 17 blocks done now, two more to finish and then I start cutting out again. Using this grid I can see at a glance what fabrics I used where. The blank spots are there because I don't have any of that fabric left..not even enough to cut a 3/4 inch square. That is what happens when you throw away the small scraps of fabric.

If you are making one of these quilts and would like the grid, I will be happy to send it to you. It's on an excel spreadsheet, but I can change to .pdf if you do not have excel. It's pretty simple to make one in excel if you choose to make your own.

I number the blocks as I make them...not the order they will be in the quilt. Column 2 is the center or cross block, and then the rows that surround the center as row 2,3 & 4. My final column is for my block border, which in my quilt I am using a different shirting around each block. The little squares of fabric are 3/4 inch cuts.

I must admit to enjoying this little organization project. I do love organizing things and perfect little task for a snowy day.

I have pictures of my recently finished blocks at end of this post.

I have started quilting on the Fancy Flowers wall hanging from the McCalls Quilt Along.

Using for the background a template of hexies, which looks like chicken wire to me. Something different from the usual cross hatch that I often do.

Hand quilting is so relaxing for me and I am trying hard this time to keep my stitches small and consistent.

Thanks for stopping by and if you are I the Southeast, I hope you are enjoying the "historic" snow storm as much as I am. Now to refill the coffee cup and do a little handwork :)

Don't forget to check out my finished blocks at the bottom.

Teresa

 

 

 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

McCall's Quilting - Fancy Flowers

Have you been following the McCall's Quilting Quilt Along called Fancy Flowers? This project is an appliqué method used by Erin Russek of One Piece at a Time. This one has been fun for me as I learned a new appliqué method. The YouTube videos are great! Check it out if you have not already done so, the lessons are all available until some time in March. Here is my version of the project, all done except the quilting and binding. I am going to hand quilt this, so may be awhile before you see the final quilt. I want to have it ready for Spring.

I have also been busily working on my Patchwork of the crosses blocks and have pictures to show of completed blocks. Hope you enjoy them and if you get inspired to do one yourself using English Paper piecing and need a template to print your own paper foundations! let me know and I will be happy to send you a .pdf version I developed. I will need your email address though so I know where to send it.

Thanks for stopping by, Teresa