Sunday, April 24, 2011

A Different Baby Quilt

There is nothing usual about this baby quilt. In fact, this quilt is a "first" on so many different levels. First, it's 50 x 70, which is pretty large for a baby quilt. Second, the colors are way out of my comfort level, but I do like these fabrics. Third, I didn't wash these fabrics. Instead I washed the quilt twice when it was completed. Since the batting is 100% cotton Warm N Natural, it has puckered and softened beautifully. The texture of the quilt is what I prefer.

But what really sets this quilt apart is the quilting. With the exception of channel stitching in the outer border, this quilt is entirely free-motion quilted. And while 1000's of quilters do free-motion quilting, this is something new in my repertoire. This baby quilt became a huge practice piece. If you click on the pictures, you can see that each print has a different kind of quilting. For the dark purple bits, I did use dark purple on the bottom, so you can see that quilting on the back of the quilt.

This quilt is for my friend Cecilia's third grandchild, and she gave me permission to do what I wanted. What a great opportunity to try new things on this quilt! This design is "Fashion District" from Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr's Quilts Made Modern.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A Beginning, A Middle, and Two Ends

On April 29th  three junior high home-schoolers are coming here for their first quilt lessons.  Anna and Natalie both want to do Flying Geese baby quilts; Natalie's brother David likes half-square triangles and wants to do a Bear's Paw quilt.  The technique used in both of these patterns is similar.  David is going to use a dark blue background and has some bold prints for the paws.  Anna too is using a dark background with bright geese.  Natalie wants a light background with some purple and green geese.  We're going to try to do this project in three lessons with homework.  Of course I think this will work and be a great introduction to quilting!

This is a rough draft of the third sports quilt.  Cutting up the jerseys was first.  Then was time for the layout.  Mom Joanne came over and tweaked the layout.  Now these jerseys just need to be attached to the red sashing, and then it's ready for quilting.  This quilt will have a navy background and binding.
This sports jersey quilt is the first one of the three to be completed.  It's the one with the camouflage backing.  Despite the inflexibility of some of the jerseys, this quilt has a wonderful softness and usability.  Click on the picture to see the detail of the long-arm quilting, done by Frank of T and F Quilting Studio

The other end is this Jinny Beyer tote, and I think it's something I'll use a a lot. It's perfect for toting projects and fabrics. There are two lovely deep pockets inside, and the lining is the same light teal fabric as the feature triangle.  The pattern recommended using two layers of batting.  Instead I used Soft and Stable by  Soft and Stable has given this bag a great shape, softness, and flexibility.  It really is the ideal lining.


Thursday, April 14, 2011

All Projects Great and Small

While I'm working on the sports jersey graduation quilts, I need to switch over to something small and simple every once in a while. This is a Jinny Beyer Tote Bag (see picture below) along with some of her fabrics. All other bits - pockets, lining, straps -  are cut out and ready for assembly.But this is the weekend my parents move from Chicago to  my brother Doug's house in Lombard.  Brother Al and his wife Pam will be sleeping in the studio - er, guestroom. Good thing my wonderful
Chicago Modern Quilt Guild is having a sew-in this Sunday afternoon.  I'll be more than ready to continue working on this bag there!

This tote will be about 20" wide and 15" deep. The construction is foundation pieced. The pattern suggests using a double thickness of batting. Instead I have used Soft and Stable by and think it will be perfect.

Friday, April 8, 2011

This isn't how I roll...

Some think everything I touch turns into a quilted gem.  That is so not true.  And here's a great example.  Why this baby bib?  Why not?  CMQG friend Jen has made some and suggested there were free bib patterns available.  Blog reader Zina showed me a picture of a bib she made from leftover fabrics of a baby quilt.  So, leftover baby quilt bits + bib pattern =

This isn't horrible - well, maybe it is.  But I wasn't at all happy doing this.  At least I gave it a go.

I learned at the CMQG retreat that I work large and I work dark.  No wonder I'm not happy with this bib.  At least I know why.

I'm finishing up a baby quilt with free motion quilting - it's been excellent practice - and am about to start pin basting sports quilt #1.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Baseball Jersey Quilt

One hockey jersey quilt is in pieces and in a box, ready to start whenever the mom tells me what colors to use.  The second hockey jersey quilt, the one with the camouflage background, is ready for pin-basting and quilting.  This third quilt is from baseball jerseys.  It will have a navy backing and binding.  Nothing's been sewn together yet - waiting for approval from the parents before I start sewing.  It's going to be pretty nifty though!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Baby Quilt - in process

These fabrics are quite a departure for me. So is this design. It's Fashion District from the book Quilts Made Modern  by Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr. Quilters are great for second guessing their fabrics choices, and of course I'm doing that with this one. If I had it to do over, perhaps I'd use fabrics for the horizontal bricks that aren't quite so - um - "look at me"-ish. Still, I think it's part of the charm of this quilt. I haven't attached the borders yet and haven't decided on a backing, but piecing this top was what I had to do this weekend. Back to sports jerseys...

Friday, April 1, 2011

A First Time for Everything

This is the first time I have ever labeled a quilt. This baby quilt is the one that's on its way to Japan via the Mission of Love quilt effort, thanks to the tipoff from Instructions were to label the quilt with words of hope. Fellow quilt guild member Ebony gave me the idea of just using a fabric pen and scrap of fabric. I may have to start to label my quilts!