Friday, September 28, 2018

Starstruck September

Have I mentioned I love being an Island Batik Ambassador?  Even the blog photo is inspirational.  I really do want to make something like that one of these days.  

For September, the Island Batik Ambassadors challenge was Starstruck.  Anything with a star, and any size.  I planned to try to work on a UFO that has lots of stars, but decided to make something new, because we're supposed to use more current collections.  I pulled a variety of fabrics, knowing I needed at least 1/2 yard for the borders and binding.  I tried a few different colorways, but this one spoke the loudest.  I used some of the scraps from the August Spring Blossoms quilt, especially the pink bird design.  I had a piece of pink with little dots, grabbed some scraps for the background, a larger dot, and the dragonfly fabric from Spring Blossoms, too.  

I made my Friendship Star, or Ribbon Twist Star runner.  I wanted to show you that even your "non-batik" designs can use batiks, just as well.  

Here's the Island Batik version. 

But wait!  I just made this in traditional Christmas fabrics.

I've used traditional colors, too.  Blue and yellow; yellow, gray and red; strawberries, with red and blue, so many others.

See?  You can use batiks in anything.  I happen to love how the twist makes the star disappear.  It looks like a ribbon is weaving around squares.  

If you haven't tried Island Batik, you really should.  The colors are gorgeous, and the fabric is wonderful.  I am so spoiled.  When I make something with Island Batik, there's hardly any fraying.  When I work with other brands of fabrics, the fraying edges seem so bothersome and numerous!  It's so annoying to work with other stuff, now.  I was finishing something recently, with another brand of quilting fabric, and was really surprised at how many strings had to be trimmed, from units, blocks, the border. It felt like such a waste of time, because I seldom have to do it with an Island Batik project.  I know part of it is that the fabric is washed so many times, that it's shrunken, and the fibers are now meshed and closer together.  It's also because Island Batik starts out with a great base fabric, to begin with.  It does matter.  

Try it, and let me know.  

On a side note, the family of my Airplane commissioned quilt send this.  Little C looks so happy to have his Aeronautics quilt.  The quilt is about 62" square, so it looks like he'll be snuggling with it for a while.  I'm so happy he's happy!  

Also, I received my Teal Mini Quilt from my swap partner.  I think she did a wonderful job for a very new quilter.  The wing is the teal fabric that we were given to use.  I know this bird will make me smile.   Becky also sent a Kansas pin to add to my collection.  The Map quilt was given to me by my partner the first year I participated.  I'm collecting pins from other states I visit as well, but missed a few. lol

That's all my news for now.  Thanks for visiting!  
I'll be sharing the quilt I'm sending to Becky soon. 

Monday, September 10, 2018

Winner and a Finish for Great Outdoors Blog Hop

Hi.  Thanks for stopping back! picked 34 for my winner, which was the comment by Vicki saying she loved ice cream floats. She's also looking forward to trying Island Batik.  I think she'll be as spoiled as I am.
Now I need to get an Ice Cream float!  lol  Vickie will be getting a variety of 10" squares from the Spring Blossoms collection, and 1/2 yd piece of red, plus a copy of one of my patterns.  I appreciated all the comments and new follows on Facebook and on my blog.  Thanks so much for following along on my adventure.  There will be more give-aways, so please enter again.

I did get a chance to finish my quilt. but it's been raining so the photos are not the best.  

I got some wide backing from JoAnne's, and layered it with Hobbs Heirloom Natural Cotton batting with scrim, which was provided in the Island Batik Ambassador box.  It was a queen size, and I wanted to try it.  It's the first time I've used one with scrim, which is a light non-woven layer that supports the cotton batting.  I found it easy to pin and quilt.  The loft is a little less than I usually use, so the quilting isn't as defined, but it's still very cuddly and I'm sure someone will love it.  

I used Aurifil 50wt 4651, Bari, for the main part of the top, including the setting triangles.  I quilted a flower in each block, and feathers in the triangles.  I love how the thread kind of melted into the blocks, with just a little bit of color showing to add interest, but the setting triangles really sparkle.  The variegated thread has pastel shades of pink, lavender, and yellow, with white, and adds just a subtle touch of color in the Almond setting triangles.  

I used 1125 Medium Teal thread for the inner border, quilting a leaf and vine design, and 2425 Bright Pink for the outer border, which has feathers.  I used the same fabric for binding.  

I'm so happy it's done!  I'm doing a craft fair this weekend at my church, and wanted to have it to display.  

I also finished a UFO from 2013.  This was the Eastern PA shop hop quilt, possibly from 2012.  I finished the top in 2013, and had it pinned and ready to quilt.  I couldn't decide on the design, and guess I needed to improve my skills, so it sat for a few years.  I decided to quilt it to also have it ready for my show.  

I think most of the fabrics are from Andover, and the block designs were done for each shop.  I designed the setting.  I used Aurifil to piece and quilt, also.  I used a few navy colors and a cream for the blocks (depending on whether the block had more blue or more cream) and red for the setting triangles, and cream for the borders.  I didn't note the color numbers this time, but did finish a few bobbins and a spool of blue.  I did a feathered wreath in each block, a swirl design in the sashing, and feathered designs in the setting triangles and border. Yay for an empty spool!  And for a UFO finished!

I'll be sharing my September Star challenge with Island Batik soon, so please visit again!  

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

My New Pattern with Jungle Cruise

The Great Outdoors Blog Hop is continuing!  I wanted to share my newest pattern, which features Jungle Cruise, with the rest of the inspiration today.  I named it Jungle Jumble.  It's a few different blocks, and you can do different things with it.  This is only one layout! 

This pattern uses a 10" Stack, plus some background, and then border fabric.  It's actually fairly easy, and will be available soon.  I'm working on final edits.  I think it's a great pattern to show off larger prints, as well as efficient use of the 10" squares.  There's only little scraps left of each square, and you could make a table topper out of the unused pieces.

Here's the fabric collection.

It's a great mix, and rather masculine, if you need it to be.  It has teal, browns and golds, green, and just a dash of plum aubergine.  The "Chops" are animal related, like snakeskin and other animals, plus ferns, and other natural looking designs.  

The Collection is shipping to stores now.  If you don't see it, please ask your favorite store to carry it.  I do know that Hancock's-Paducah will be carrying my patterns soon.  I was thrilled to get an order request today.  They'll also be in my Etsy shop, as soon as I can get them listed.  

I love designing with Island Batik.  They make it so easy, because they provide gorgeous fabrics to work with.  Keep an eye out for Jungle Cruise in stores, and Jungle Jumble coming soon!  

Remember to visit the other bloggers this week.
Monday, August 27 - Globetrotter - Pamela Quilts, Curliecue Creations
Tuesday, August 28 - Jungle Cruise - Vicki's Crafts and Quilting, Little Bunny Quilts
Wednesday, August 29 - Lavendula - Carole Lyles Shaw, Masterpiece Quilting
Thursday, August 30 - London Calling - Quilt in a Not-Shell, Lizard Creek Quilting
Friday, August 31 - Spirit Rhythm - Steph Jacobson, Whispers of Yore
And check in with Island Batik for the give-away.
a Rafflecopt er giveaway

Monday, August 13, 2018

Spring Blossoms in the Great Outdoors Blog Hop

Hi, and welcome to my day on the Island Batik Ambassador Great Outdoors blog hop!  My secret bundle of gorgeous fabric from the February box was called Spring Blossoms.  It's filled with pink, yellow, orange, red, green, purple, and turquoise, in a variety of prints, including flowers, birds, dragonflies, and raindrops.  We got 1/2 yard pieces of the prints, and 2 yards of the pink and red.  

Yes, I may have swooned a bit when I saw the colors, especially the dotted raindrops.  The SKU for that one is 111817220, and the color name is Nasturtium.  Please check your favorite store to see if they carry it, if not, tell them to get it! 
Yeah, isn't it gorgeous?  Look at the colors!  A rainbow of raindrops!  
I shared it on Instagram and had many comment on it.  I need more!  

Anyway, about my quilt.  I had a sweet design all ready to go, featuring the raindrops in the center of each block.  We're asked to use as many fabrics from the collection in this particular project, so I knew the other units would be scrappy looking, but wanted to highlight the raindrops.  Just as I was going to cut out the pieces I realized that my design would not work.  The drops are directional, and my design would not support that, nor would I have enough fabric to make it work.  Off to Plan B.  

Well, B was a great design, too.  Only, it wouldn't have enough fabric to work, either.  Because I wanted the drops to all fall the same way in my quilt.  So, back to EQ8, or the drawing board, for Plan C. lol.  I picked a Mosaic block from their library, which would use the raindrops as the center, but when put on point, would go the right way.  Yes, all the quilts were on point with a little sashing and cornerstones, which is where my plan went awry.  I wanted to end up under 60" square, too, so I could use the new Hobb's Wool batting we got in our July Ambassador boxes.  Again, best laid plans, lol.  I have to play more with EQ8 to figure out why my quilts are always larger in real life, than the program says it will be.  Without borders, this one is 59", and it needs borders!  

When all else fails, just go larger! lol.   I had enough for a 2" and 6" border, making this about 72" square.  And visit later to see some of the other designs, which may end up as patterns.   I know I have other batting I can use for this one, and need to figure out the backing.  This is just a top for now, but I'll be quilting with Aurifil soon.  

Here's today's quilt.  It uses 14 different fabrics in the blocks, plus Lime for sashing, the Berries print for cornerstones, and Turquoise Dot Floral  and Flamingo Mixed Birds for the outer border. The background and setting triangles are all from Almond.  I was planning to use the red from the collection, which was given for borders, but it was just too bright with the other colors.  I felt the Almond would play nicer.  

Here's the EQ8 design with red. 
In real life, when I put the red next to the green and turquoise, around the blocks, it was a little too bold for my taste.  So, Almond it is.  I do purchase yardage of that one and other neutrals when I can.  I love when Hancocks-Paducah puts their Island Batik on sale, and I'll pick up neutrals then, too. May as well get free shipping, right?

I made sure the birds in the borders were all going the same direction, too. 

So, to thank you for visiting, and reading this far, please leave a comment about your favorite Summer treat below, and be entered to win some squares I'll cut from the scraps, and a copy of one of my patterns.  Follow me on Facebook, and leave a second comment that you do, for another chance.  

Visit If These Threads Could Talk for another project with Spring Blossoms, and visit the rest of the bloggers for more inspiration and give-aways.  

Monday, August 6 - All A Flutter - Yellow Cat Quilt Designs, Creative Blonde
Tuesday, August 7 - Birds N’ Bees - Ark Angel Creations, Patterns By Jen
Wednesday, August 8 - Canterbury Manor - Sally Manke, Powered By Quilting
Thursday, August 9 - Eclectic Garden - Desert Bloom Quilting, Sew Karen-ly Created
Friday, August 10 - Vintage Morris - MooseStash Quilting, Devoted Quilter

Monday, August 13 - Safari - Sew Incredibly Crazy, SweetGrass Designs
Tuesday, August 14 - Spring Blossoms - Mary Mack Made Mine, If These Threads Could Talk
Wednesday, August 15 - Victoria and Albert - Bejeweled Quilts, Clever Chameleon
Thursday, August 16 - Wild Things - Freemotion By The River, Kauffman Designs
Friday, August 17 - Petting Zoo - Den Syende Himmel, Sarah Goer Quilts
Monday, August 20 - Ocean Odyssey - Gateway Quilts, The Quilt Rambler
Tuesday, August 21 - British Rose - Busy Hands Quilts, Mania for Quilts
Wednesday, August 22 - Dear William - The Inquiring Quilter, mmm! Quilts, Living Water Quilter
Thursday, August 23 - Dragonfly Dreams - Inchworm Fabrics, BeaQuilter
Friday, August 24 - Fur-ocious Friends - Quilting Affection Designs, Dizzy Quilter
Monday, August 27 - Globetrotter - Pamela Quilts, Curliecue Creations
Tuesday, August 28 - Jungle Cruise - Vicki's Crafts and Quilting, Little Bunny Quilts
Wednesday, August 29 - Lavendula - Carole Lyles Shaw, Masterpiece Quilting
Thursday, August 30 - London Calling - Quilt in a Not-Shell, Lizard Creek Quilting
Friday, August 31 - Spirit Rhythm - Steph Jacobson, Whispers of Yore
Monday, September 3 - Sweet Tweets - Kathleen McMusing, Adventurous Applique and Quilting
Tuesday, September 4 - Whatnot - heARTS Creations, Slice of Pi Quilts
And be sure to use the Rafflecopter to enter to win fabric packs from Island Batik.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for stopping! Enjoy the rest of the hop!

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Aviation Quilt Commission

Hi, and thanks for visiting.  A few months ago, one of my Quiltsy Teammates asked if I was interested in doing a commission quilt for an Aviation family's new baby.  I had a number of email conversations with Kaitlin, the new mom-to-be, and she shared her thoughts on colors and design.  I suggested Alison Glass Sun Prints because it offered most of the colors she wanted, plus the gray and gold colors she wanted for the border.  She shared a photo of a similar quilt for inspiration, so I did the math and came up with this design.  I got to work making the blocks, and was thinking of how I wanted to quilt the white blocks.  I got the idea of doing a variety of planes, helicopters, rockets and hot air balloon for my quilting designs, and searched online for designs that would lend themselves to quilting.  I've done similar things before, and usually find coloring book pages to work well.  

So, the quilt is done.  I chose 6 different flying things, because I had 18 white blocks.  I wanted the quilting to help share the design of the quilt and the theme of the nursery, which is "Oh, the places you'll go".  The colored blocks look like propellers, and Sun Prints has a compass design, and stars, along with flowers, and other shapes.  Kaitlyn wants to be surprised for the gender, and wanted something that would work for either.  The colored blocks all have a swirl design, in the matching color of Aurifil thread.  I took it to the Cradle of Aviation museum today for a few fun photos.  The guard and receptionist were very friendly and open to allowing me to do this, even putting the quilt on the wing of one plane, and holding it so I could get it with the Blue Angel jet.  

If you didn't know, Long Island has a wonderful history with Aviation.  The museum is in the area where Charles Lindbergh took off to fly to Paris.  Long Island is also home to Grumman, Sperry Fairchild and many other manufactures of planes.   I grew up knowing this area as Mitchell Field, and seeing all the old hangars and buildings and air strips.  I was really excited to see they decided to create this museum to honor the history of the area, and I toured it a number of years ago. It's only a few minutes from my house.  
So, here's my quilt!  

 Plane built by Grumman, on Long Island.
 Yes, it's on the wing!  
 Thanks to the guard for holding this!  The quilt measures about 58" square, and the photo is cropped only at the bottom.  Yes, it's a real Blue Angel plane.  

Aurifil 50wt Colors include 2024 white, 2255 Dark Red Orange, 2892 Pine, 2535 Magenta, 1133 Bright Orange, 2140 Orange Mustard,  1231 Spring Green, 1128 Light Blue Violet, 2920 Light Brass for the borders, 1125 Medium Teal, 2325 Linen, and 4182 Dark Turquoise.  Yes, lots of thread changes for about a minute of stitching the swirls.  I used a white bobbin in the bottom for all of it, though.  I knew changing for each color would not make me happy, lol.  I also knew too much quilt quilting would make the quilt stiff, not something a little one could snuggle into.  I use a blue wash-out marker for drawing the designs, and did each freehand, while looking at the printed illustration.  I couldn't use a lightbox for transferring, because it was already pinned together.  Sometimes having a strong art background comes in handy.  Quilting designs and Pictionary, are two examples, lol
 Feathers in the outer border. Binding and 2nd border are same gray print.

 Hot Air balloon, and some of the colors.  
 Helicopter!  I guess I need to get close-ups of the other 2 planes.
Backing is Minkee.  

So, Kaitlyn I hope you love this quilt as much as I loved making it to help welcome your little one to a life to treasure.  Thanks so much for trusting me.  

Remember, it's also the day to Hop for Island Batik, and time to vote for your favorite Black and White challenge.  Mine is the Night and Day with purple border.  You get 3 votes!  


Monday, August 6, 2018

Great Outdoors Blog Hop and more!

Hi!  First,  I just wanted to share that the Island Batik Ambassador hop is starting, and will go on for a few weeks.  Lots of inspiration and lots of prizes.  We're sharing the collections that were shown at Spring Quilt Market, and are now arriving in your favorite quilt shops.  Jungle Cruise, which I used in my newest pattern, Jungle Jumble is one of them.

Just wait until you see mine, next week, but here's the link for the full hop

On another front, Quiltsy Team on Etsy, my seller's team, is like a huge, international quilting guild.  Really!  We have over 100 members, many of whom are active in the daily chat, and we pride ourselves on the support in all aspects of life, from improving our shops to personal.  I can't imagine not having these incredible women in my life.  They've gotten me through so many things, including my daily issues with Mom's Alzheimer's.  I offered a challenge to them, and they answered with stunning results.  The challenge was to make something, table runner or larger, with black, white and one other color.  We're going to be voting for your favorites soon, so keep an eye out for the links.  Here's the Pinterest page with the entries, and I'll share the voting link soon. 

Just a reminder, this is my entry.  

And I'm almost done with a commissioned baby quilt.  I have to finish the border and bind it, then I'll share photos.  I'm hoping to have a great location shot.  Can't wait to show you!  
Stay tuned!  Lots happening this week and next.   

Thanks so much for stopping by!  Remember to hop!  

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Island Batik Pattern Play Challenge

Please don't faint!  I've actually finished a challenge, completely, and before the end of the month!!  Yay for me.  

In the midst of so many challenging days with my mom, and with the court case against me and my brother by 3 other siblings, I found time to quilt.  And it's a larger quilt!  I'm as surprised as you are, but I also wanted to do a black, white and one other color challenge with the Quiltsy Team on Etsy, my seller's team, and that required it being done and listed by August 4.  Yup, I started that challenge and made up the rules.  Getting something to fit both challenges was a little tricky, but I figured it out.  

I grabbed my copy of Day and Night from Quilt in a Day, which I've had for years, but have wanted to make.  I grabbed some Almond batik, and found enough of the black and lavender I've purchased, to work, if I changed out the border order.  I really only purchase Island Batik fabrics when buying batiks.  I watch for sales at Hancocks-Paducah or Quilt In a Day, as both list the brand by name.  Both the black and lavender are older pieces.  

I cut strips and made 2 blocks at a time, over the last few weeks, then last week, got the top finished.  I had to run to JoAnn's to get something for the back, and got that ready.  I wanted to do something fairly fast for quilting, as the design was busy and dramatic.  I love the little circle pinwheels where the blocks join, and the larger black and white circles around them.  That's the secondary design.  It only happens when you put 4 blocks together, and is more dramatic with 3 colors of fabric, vs 2.  
I didn't want to detract from that, so picked a curvy/feathery/swirly design, and Aurifil Graphite 50wt thread, the black and white variegated.  It looks great.  Sometimes the quilting disappears, and other times, it accents the top.  I used 2024 White for a vine/feather design in the white border, and 3840, French Lilac, in 40wt to quilt feathers in the outer border.  I then added black binding, because I felt the little touch would frame the top better.  So, here's my finished quilt.  

Black, White and Lavender

It measures 60 by 73.  The scraps from cutting the strips can be made into other projects, which I'll work on later.  I have other deadline project, including a commissioned baby quilt, plus August and September's quilts.  I'll get a table runner or 2 out of the scraps.  

So, thanks for visiting.  If you want to see more of the Island Batik Ambassador challenge quilts this month, please visit here.  I know this isn't the best list, but it's a fast blog post.  Other blogs will have more info, and I'll share the wrap up post soon.  Thanks for visiting!  Also, the Quiltsy Team #blackwhiteandspreadallover challenge has a voting part, so I'll share that too, and hope you vote for your favorite (mine, lol).