Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Motorbikes and Cars Quilt



This summer I haven't yet had a lot of time to make quilts, since a big house maintenance project has occupied most of my hours. But, I have been able to do a little bit, like completing this charity quilt for the hospital.

The starting point was some leftover fabrics with car and motorcycle motifs used in this quilt from last year. I made a simple swirl block with Britten Nummer from Ikea as the background, and solid blue blocks in between to make it a boyish quilt.


I quilted a FMQ Dogwood pattern all over the quilt, with a light blue thread. Binding is the blue solid, and is attached by machine to be durable.

Finished size for this charity quilt is 39" x 47" after quilting. This is my fifth charity quilt for the year, and 34th all time for the children's ward at the hospital.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Try It! With Island Batik



June's challenge in the Island Batik Ambassador program was to try a technique that we hadn't done before.

Last year I got very inspired by a mini quilt by Twiggy and Opal , using both fabric weaving and a piping-like piece in the quilt.


There are always leftovers and scraps from making quilts, and I tend to keep all usable pieces. Here is the colorful bundle of  batik scraps from the Southern Blooms collection that I used in a quilt made last year. It is perfect for June's challenge.

Note:  All products in this post were given to me by Island Batik as part of their Ambassador program.


I cut batik strips 1/2" wide and fed them through the bias tape maker. The strips were pressed well for the weaving.


Strips of 1/4" width are then carefully weaved together, I made one warm and one cool palette .


I used interfacing to keep the woven pieces together before incorporating them into the quilt.


Then there was the piping-like part. With all the gorgeous scraps from the Southern Blooms collection I decided to make a rainbow-like gradation. One inch strips of colored batiks are pressed in half and sewn in between white batik strips.

I used Aurifil 50wt in white #2024 for the piecing.


Here are all the strips sewn together, and the fabric weave pieces ready with interfacing.


Then I cut the gradation strip set in two and arranged the pieces into a pleasing design. As you can see, pressing of the colored strips gives life to the quilt.


The top is finished and I want to stroke the beautiful colored strips all the time! The woven pieces are approximately 2 1/4" square. each.


The backside a gorgeous display of colors against the solid white batik!


I kept the quilting simple, machine quilted with Aurifil 50wt in white #2024, and as a final touch I hand quilted two stripes of Aurifil 12wt blue #2815 and green #2890 on the right hand side, and last but not least a cross stitch row in Aurifil 12wt pink #2479 on top.

Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 Bleached Cotton Batting was used in the quilt sandwich.

The binding is a neutral batik called Sprinkles.


The quilting shows off best on the backside. Hanging pockets are made, and this quilt will definitely brighten up my sewing room! Then I can pet it every day!

The finished mini is 12 1/2" x 15 1/2".


Low sun rays makes a dramatic effect on the quilt.

This concludes my June challenge; I didn't only try one new technique to me, but actually two! Fabric weaving with tiny strips and incorporating piping-like piecing in a quilt is now a part of my experience, and I wouldn't be surprised if there will be more of this in the future, because this was fun!

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

May's Charity Quilt




 Here's a small charity quilt I made from a charm pack I have had for a while. I added some solid squares to make a good sized quilt, and finally added a 5" frame around it. The resulting quilt is approximately 40" x 50", and it gives a summery feeling.

This is my fourth charity quilt for the year, and 33rd all time for the children's ward at the hospital.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Blue Pillows


I took a little break from quilting and made these two pillows for my son's couch. They will brighten up the dark grey fabric on the sofa, but still keep a masculine feel.

The pillow forms are 20", but the fabric is cut smaller to get "stuffy" pillows.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Make It Modern with Hobbs



The May challenge in the Island Batik Ambassador program was to create a modern quilt using any of the provided Hobbs batting. Here's my solution to the challenge.




Must incorporate one of the characteristics of modern quilts as defined by the Modern Quilt Guild (the use of bold colors and prints, high contrast and graphic areas of solid color, improvisational piecing, Minimalism, expansive negative space, alternate grid work)

Note:  All products in this post were given to me by Island Batik as part of their Ambassador program.



When designing a quilt I always sit down with pencil and paper and make a sketch. Sometimes the the sketch is quickly discarded and I start looking for ideas from other designers, but not this time. This is completely my own design!


I decided to make a grid/lattice using grey and black solid batiks, with white solid as background. Batik foundations in cold colors fill in the squares.

My original idea was to use only grey in the vertical lattice, but that didn't give enough contrast, so I added a black stripe to make it more distinct.

I decided to bind the quilt with white solid, adding a light blue strip of Check it Out in the lower right corner for interest.


The quilt is 38" x 54", a good crib size, and fits perfectly in this playground! I like the way the lattice weaves its way on top of the colored squares.


Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 Bleached Cotton Batting was used in the quilt sandwich. The quilt is pieced with Aurifil 50wt white #2024, and quilted with a variety of matching Aurifil 40wt and 50wt threads in an uneven organic grid.


All the previous pictures are somewhat cold, just like the colors of the quilt.
I needed a little more color in the last picture, the green leaves of the birches have not come out as far as they should according to the calendar, we still have frost nights. Maybe that's what I get when making a modern "winter quilt" in May?!

Sunday, April 21, 2019

April Challenge - Ready, Set, Go!



The Island Batik Ambassadors were given an Accuquilt Ready, Set, GO! package this year as part of an industry partnership with Island Batik. For the April challenge we were asked to use the Go! cutter and the included 8" Cube to make a baby quilt.


Note:  All products in this post were given to me by Island Batik as part of their Ambassador program


Looking through the Eleanor Burns book I decided to make a modified  Road to Oklahoma pattern using these two dies. The resulting blocks from these dies are 2" finished, square and HST , respectively.

I love making scrappy quilts, so I decided to use leftovers from earlier Island Batik project, Paisley Dot Brights, as the main fabric.


The cutting of blocks goes very fast with this system, six layers of fabric at a time. I had enough of the dark and light blue for the star blocks, and the rest of the Paisley Dot Brights were use to make the colorful four patch blocks. In addition I used stash builder rolls for the inside of the stars.

The neutral Milk Shake was used for the background.


 The quilt top consists of a total of 504 pieces, and here they are all together. I assembled a few of the HSTs before this picture was taken, and it was great not having to deal with the dog ears!


Here are the two different blocks the quilt is made from. The colors are yummy!


The quilt top is a real color explosion!


For the quilting I used the walking foot and made a meandering cross hatch design. It really compliments the stars and four patch design and gives life to the quilt. Aurifil 40wt in a silver color (#2600) was used for the qulting, with Aurifil 50wt #2024 in the bobbin.

Hobbs Cotton Batting was used in the quilt, and it gives a nice loft.


The resulting size of the quilt is 40" square. Grey Island Batik solid was used for the binding.


The fun backing adds extra life to the quilt, this really is a Color Explosion quilt!

Monday, April 1, 2019

Super Hero Quilt


My latest  quilt finish is the result of a successful mixture of super hero fabric and matching solids. The red border with circles that could be interpreted as planets or asteroids gives it a great finish. The zigzag binding in green and white adds fun to the finished object. I am sure this one will give great comfort to a sick child.

This is my third charity quilt for the year, and 32 all time for the children's ward at the hospital.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Vanishing Stars



The March Challenge for the Island Batik Ambassadors was "Vintage Reimagined": Take inspiration from a vintage quilt and make it your own. This is my original creation Vanishing Stars.


The materials I used in this project were given to me by Island Batik as part of the Ambassador program. Thank you to Island Batik, Aurifil and Hobbs Batting.



The Sawtooth Star has always been one of my favorite quilt blocks. There are a vast amount of vintage quilts that have used these blocks.

The first blocks laid out on my porch. A late polar low pressure dumped a lot of snow over us, so we are still longing for spring.


My inspiration for the quilt was to start with a full line of stars on top, but with "shedding" star petals on the star in each row (here shown in solid white). The shedded petals would end up in a pile at the bottom. The gradually receding lines of pieced stars moves towards subtle, disappearing stars.

The background fabrics are from last year's Ambassador box, they give a vintage feel to the quilt. The stars are made from Stash Builder batiks and other remnants. The negative space gives lots of freedom for quilting.


The background batik for the main part of the quilt, appropriately named Cherwell Copper Vintage, gives a perfect contrast to the pieced stars. I chose to quilt this part with a crosshatch pattern using a golden Aurifil 50wt thread (5015).

Cotton batting from Hobbs gives perfect loft to the quilt.


For the lighter background I quilted diagonal lines in the same thread, with the same spacing. All lines marked with my Hera marker.

Big stitch hand quilting with Aurifil 12wt 2890 makes the transition from the 'complete' star area to the more subtle stars. Hand quilting gives another vintage feel of the quilt.


I had great plans for the negative space, the original idea was to hand quilt the outline of the sawtooth stars with Aurifil 12wt threads.

In the picture above I had done this with the star to the left, but I felt that there was too little contrast with the background using the thread I had available. Instead I tested out machine quilting with Aurifil 28wt in a darker color (2568), shown at the right. This gave a much better result, so I pulled out the hand stitching from the first star.

Later I added some hand quilting with Aurifil 12wt to a few of the the negative stars.


Above is a detail from the lower left corner of the quilt. The outline of the negative stars is clear, and the added hand quilting gives a nice effect. The fallen star petals  are clearly shown, some are more subtle than others.

For the binding I cut 2" wide strips of both background fabrics, made double fold binding and added the light binding to the darker background and dark binding to the lighter background. This gives a modern touch to the quilt.


The quilt spread out on my porch. After quilting my Vanishing Stars is 41.5" square.


Here are all the Aurifil threads I used for piecing and quilting. The thread is a joy to piece and quilt with, and a nice side effect is the minimal amount lint it gives.


I found the perfect print from my stash for the backing. It has a vintage, floral pattern, and the golden brown color of the leaves is almost identical to the darker background fabric


The last picture shows how much snow we still have. The picture was taken yesterday afternoon with low, golden sunlight and a dramatic sky for backdrop. The quilt glows!

Keep on quilting!