Good news, it seems that my allergies/cold/flu from Monday was really just allergies. Now I"m just trying to figure out the source but it's all under control with the magic of Benedryl.
On the sewing front it's time for some planning. I can't just jump into projects. I really need plans and lists. I've spent the last few months finishing a lot of projects and I feel really good about that. So good, that now it's time to start lots of new projects. Actually, as I look through the list I really only have 1 new one but I have 3 others "on the list" that I'm going to give some attention to.
First, I need a new project for the longarm and this one is finally up. It's my oldest UFO and one of my personal favorite quilts. I started piecing it in 1998! The top was finished July 2017 and now it's time for quilting. I'll do lots of continuous curves in the 1: squares but all that black is calling for mandalas or maybe feathers. I've printed off a copy to play with some ideas.
I've got several piecing projects planned.
Fist is this UFO. I made a lot of stitched and clamped shibori samples a couple of years ago and have been searching for something to do with them.
I'm going to use some of them for penguin bellies! I'll get started on this one this week. It will be a lap quilt and will go to one of my SILs. The hard part with this one will be the tiny eyes and beaks. But I don't mind a little tedium when I have a good book to listen to.
Next it's time to put these together. I drew up this quick layout in EQ and that's probably how it's going to be done. I want to have a side border for a heavily feathered vine. I envision some cross-hatched diamonds between the blocks. Mom, Anne and I are going to Paducah this year and one of my goals on that trip is to find repro feedsack backing fabrics for this and the first flowers quilt.
Fabric of the Week
This week I have a quick newsletter for you and it's all about gradients. The Fabric of the Week is South Pacific. South Pacific is in light shades of watery blues and greens and could be a great background for a sea-themed quilt. It's 20% off through Sunday, or while it lasts!
Gradients are sold by the half yard. If you purchase multiple quantities it will come as one continuous piece.
Back in Stock
Sugar Maple and Pueblo are back in stock! Sugar Maple is great for cutting into leaf blocks in a traditional or modern quilt pattern. Pueblo is very popular for backgrounds for Southwest themed art quilts.
There are over 30 gradients to choose from! Check them all out in the shop.
Did you know that you can get any gradient on 108" wide fabric? This piece by Rachel Derstine was dyed with Blue Sky gradient. It can be any length, 1 yard or more and the gradient can be either orientation. Wide fabric dyed in a gradient pattern is $26/yard. Just send me a message and we can work out the details!
This weekend wasn't nearly as productive as I wanted. I felt like I was fighting allergies all weekend but now I'm pretty sure that it's just a full blown cold. We'll see how it goes the next few days. Hopefully not the flu. It's a good time to sit and crochet!
With the first baby blanket finished and delivered it was time to start looking at what to do next. The internet, as always, is a gold mine of ideas and wasted time. I spent hours and hours looking at free patterns and watching technique videos. Here's where I ended up.
The firest task was to find yarn. The first blanket took 3 balls of the sparkly yarn in the background. I bought 4 so I had one left over. I went back and got 2 more so I could use the last one. While there I found this yarn and got 3 balls of it too. It's really soft. Then I started looking for patterns.
I used the leftover yarn bits from the first blanket to work up some swatches. This pattern was from Yarnspirations.It's cute enough but I didn't love it.
This pattern was really pretty but required more concentration than I'm willing to commit to yet.
The hooks and the primary reference book that I'm using belonged to my paternal Grandmother. Did anyone else have this Reader's Digest book? It's still a very good resource.
I've never been a big fan of granny squares but I see on Instagram that GS blankets are REALLY popular now. I thought that if I could do a giant granny square that I could easily make it as big as my yarn lasts and wouldn't have any yarn leftover. The book instructions are good but I found better instructions on YouTube.
Here it is started in the sparkle yarn. (That first one was made with a leftover bit of yarn from the first blanket.)
I finally settled on this pattern. I don't know anything about Rescued Paw Designs but she has tons of crochet patterns and this one is really simple and fast.
I'm already making great progress! Now that I have these two projects planned I can clear off the cutting table and start planning the next quilting projects.
I got bored with binding but I finally finished the placemats and I'm really pleased to be down one more UFO. For the first time in forever, I'm below 10! Not to worry, I'm about to start another new one.
I broke them up onto 3 sets and Mom got this set. Here are the other 2 sets.
I may keep both of these or I might gift a set. I haven't decided. But, either way, they also have matching napkins! I didn't make napkins for Mom's because she doesn't use cloth napkins.
The napkins were screen printed with Color Magnet, my favorite screen printing medium.
Now that these are done I can start planning some new projects. This weekend I want to get my Hunter's Star quilts quilted and do some reorganizing to make way for new projects!
Betty cleared out her stash of 2 1/2" neutral strips for these 2 Jelly Roll Race quilts.
With some quilts, like the ones I featured yesterday, I do quilting that will not show. But on these quilts I felt like I had a good opportunity show off quilting. I picked a very dark green thread and quilted this simple leaf pattern. It shows up nicely in the finished quilts.
I picked the dark green thread because I had a pretty dark green fabric for the backing. This color isn't true, it's more of a dark blue-green. I think it works well on these simple quilts.
That's all of the veterans quilts for this month, except for my own Hunter's Star quilts.
This quilt was made by a former member, Carol. She relocated from Virginia to Georgia to be closer to family. But she sends quilts to us occasionally and I'm happy to quilt them for our cause. Carol is a very unique quilter in that she has NO STASH! Yes, you read that right. Carol gets fabric for the project she wants to work on so we can be sure that these fabrics are left from a recent project. Once she's done she finds another home for any remaining scraps. Amazing.
This one was made by Becky. It's from one of Barbara Brackman's block programs. If you click on it you can see some of the wonderful fussy cutting that Becky does to make her quilts special. I took the photo with the quilt upside down so that's why you see the watermark at the top!
I quilted it with the Woven Wind pantograph and used a butter cream for the backing.
I found a backing for my Hunter's Star. I had SIX yards of Gray Skies Gradient that didn't process right. It was my own fault but the light side of the fabric ended up pink! But by stitching two lengths together on the dark edge I can eliminate the pink edges. I'll take those pink strips and over-dye them and use them in another project.
I had a bunch of wide strips of batting left over from quilting sets of veterans quilts so I stitched them together to use in this quilt. It's like free batting!
I've been pondering a night sky gradient for a while and I have a new blue dye that was perfect for my vision. I can see this as a background for a full moon night sky scene. I hope that the Midnight Gradient will inspire you too.
Fabric of the Week - Midnight Stash Pack
Keeping with the Midnight theme, the fabric of the week is the Midnight Stash Pack. The pack has 10 fat eighths in a wide variety of dark blues with some purples and grays. This pack is 20% off through Sunday.
More Dark Blues
If these aren't quite right for you check out these other fabrics in dark blues.
I love our monthly sewing "retreat" days. We are so fortunate to have a county resource at our disposal so we can get together and sew for 2 days every month.
I finished the second Hunter's Star veterans quilt top! I absolutely love this quilt and can't wait to quilt it and get it done. I knew I would finish it this weekend so I was ready to go with one of my other quilt kits that I cut a few weeks ago.
I decided to start with a really easy one! I just have to add the bottom 2 borders and an outside green border. I wasn't sure how this would look but once I added the green border I knew it would be OK. I will miss the March sewing days so I'll finish this in April.
In the evenings I've really enjoyed crocheting again. I think the last thing I made was a blue sweater that I crocheted in high school. It was easy to get back in the groove.
This is just a small double crochet baby blanket and I'll give it to a friend who donates quilts and blankets to local agencies. These are going to be perfect projects for TV and car time. We'll see how long I stay interested in this. My goal is to not start collecting yarn!
The edging started off a little messy but I figured it out by the time I finished. I'm pleased with it and the yarn is really soft. Here's the free pattern for this blanket.
Of course I had one whole skein of yarn left over! So I'll just buy more of this for the next one. I'm not even getting close to Ravelry and I'm already down a large rabbit hole of free crochet patterns.
This week I want to focus on more veterans quilts and getting those placemats wrapped up.
This week's inspiration comes from Katherine Donaway. She made her Seahorse quilt starting with a pattern by Laura Heine. She created her collage using Sea and Sky gradient as her background. All of the elements are applique and some are 3D. Here's a close up.
For sharing, Kathleen received a 20% coupon for the shop that's good for 3 months! If you have made anything with my hand dyed fabric I hope you will consider sharing it in the Customer Gallery. The only rule is that projects have to be complete. It doesn't have to be made totally from hand dyed fabric, just include a recognizable amount.
I haven't finished the placemats but I have made great progress on my first crochet project. I'm working on the edging now so it will be done by Monday for sure. I really enjoyed working on this while watching movies and relaxing with out friends. The crochet blankets will be great travel and TV projects for a while.
I'm slowly getting the binding done on the 12 placemats. Sometimes I edge placemats really quickly on the serger but this time I'm doing an almost real binding.
It's "almost" because I don't actually join the ends together. I fold under one edge and jsut tuck the other end under the folded edge.
The tucked in piece hangs over the edge a bit so I cut it flush to the edge once I've stitched.
Only a few more to go but I'm really bored with then at this point!
I don't think I shared that I sewed all the leftover strips together and now I have about a half mile of fabric that will probably become even more placemats!
I'm Vicki Welsh and I've been making things as long as I can remember. I used to be a garment maker but transitioned to quilts about 20 years ago. Currently I'm into fabric dyeing, quilting, Zentangle, fabric postcards, fused glass and mosaic. I document my adventures here.
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