I buckled down yesterday and got the last 4 quilts done. These 4 all either use my fabric or my pattern. Back in January I did a program on veterans quilts and introduced 4 patterns and gave out a bunch of kits. Two of the "kits" were really just scrap bags and I think both of these quilts came from those. This one might be from Karen because she's combined the string scraps with some other scraps that I gave her at another time. She happily takes all the scraps that I give her! I love how she combined the scraps in this one.
I think that Gwen got the other bag of scraps and I think I remember her showing this at the CSQ meeting last month. It looks like she had a great time combining the fabrics into 10" squares. Both fo these are fun quilts. I quilted these with a lavender thread.
The backing for these 2 quilts is a pale forest green.
This one uses my Blockade pattern and I think that Betty may have made it. I love the color palette.
Both of these last 2 quilts are straight blocks (no borders) so I moved back to the front of the machine to do my favorite motif: the wavy cross-hatch. It's sooooo fast and looks great.
This was another kit that I put together and this one uses the Regiment pattern. The dark background is not black, it's really a very dark purple. The key fabric was a black on white that I overdyed gold. Becky pieced it in between making Elvis quilts.
Gold thread was perfect on both of these quilts. I especially like how it stands out in the dark purple.
I had a gold fabric that was just right for the backing for these 2 quilts.
13 quilts ready to deliver! Whew!
Now I can just spend today and tomorrow relaxing and sewing with my quilting buddies.
I got 4 more quilts done yesterday so I'm still on track.
This is one that my Mom made. When she finished this quilt she still had a lot of 2.5" squares left and made more 16-patch blocks. I really like how she offset the columns.
I picked a gold thread for this quilt and the next one and I think it looks great on the quilt.
I don't know who made this quilt but I absolutely love it. I just love a great bold orange and it plays so well with the scrappy brown tone 4-patch blocks.
The gold thread looked great on the orange quilt too.
These quilts are backed in a soft buttery yellow.
I don't know who made this quilt either but it's pieced really well, the wonkiness is due to my lazy photography skills last night.
Here's the block for this quilt. Four of these make one big star block. This is another great quilt for scraps.
Elvis is back! This isn't the same quilt from Monday. Becky made 2 of these. She says she still ahs lots of Elvis fabric but this was the last of the beer bottles.
These 2 quilts are quilted with white thread and the backing is a nice medium blue. I have the next 2 loaded and basted and ready to go tomorrow morning. I had to stop for this evening to make my Mother's Day card.....which could not look less like Mother's Day.
That's 9 of 13 veterans quilts done so far!
I didn't get much done yesterday because we had a friend visiting but I do have 2 more quilts to add to the quilted pile. Carole commented on the last post about the volume of quilts and that it was a lot of ask of a quilter. I felt that I should explain that I totally volunteer to do these and I know that I can stop doing them at any time and no one in Country School Quilters would fault me. Quilting these is enjoyable simply because I set some rules around it. I recommend rules for anyone who does charity quilting.
My rules are that I quilt the quilts however I want and using whatever thread that I want and I do them on my schedule. There are times when I don't quilt any for several months. Once they give a quilt top to me they have no say over it and they get it back whenever I'm done. The Quilters understand, are happy with the rules and are very grateful. Plus if I make a veterans quilt of my own someone will always volunteer to bind it for me! I also have a few other quilts who help out a lot too. I don't quilt all of them. These quilts are a great break from my own quilts that I tend to make overly complicated and stressful.
I've mentioned many times that I quilt these 2 at a time and I finally thought to stop and take a few in process photos. The quilts are all about 48" x 60". I cut a backing that's around 70" wide so I can stack them on the backing like this. I could probably load them in the other direction too and that would be fewer quilting passes but when I quilt from the front I will occasionally quilt the 2 quilts differently. 95% of the time I use the same thread on both quilt. Actually, as I'm thinking about it, I can't remember the last time that I switched thread on a pair of quilts. I do baste the quilts first. It makes the quilting part go a lot faster.
Then once I start quilting I just keep going, ignoring that there is a space between the quilts.
Once I finish the row that covers both edges I will stitch a label to each quilt before I advance to the next row. I do forget this step occasionally and then I just pin the labels in place and the quilter can stitch it down with the binding. With this set up along with a simple pantograph, I can load and quilt 2 quilts in a couple of hours.
It's very satisfying work.
I believe that both of these quilts were made by Karen. She is the queen of scrap quilting and she is very prolific. Not only does she make a lot of veterans quilt tops she also makes a lot of baby and child quilts for a local hospital. Yes, this one is Christmas themed. Our nurses do like a wide variety of quilts and this one will find a happy recipient this winter.
It's a very simple block and gives me an idea for a pack of plaid charms and a pack of Liberty of London charms that a friend gave me. Both would work great in this pattern.
This is a Disappearing 9-patch done scrappy and it looks great. The light center square is what makes this quilt sparkle.
While it is very scrappy there is still a cohesive palette to it. Her piecing is not crooked, that's due to the fact that I didn't have it spread out flat. Karen is actually a very precise piecer.
The back is this pretty pale bright green. Hand dyed, of course! Today is dyeing day and one of the things I need to dye is more quilt backs. I only have one left.
I'm up to 5 of 13 done and have the next 2 started. I hope to finish those and another 2 tonight.
At the April Country School Quilter's meeting I picked up 14 veterans quilt tops needing quilting. FOURTEEN! Those ladies have been busy because I brought home 16 the month before. I hadn't intended to necessarily quilt any this month because I wanted to finish Lost My Marbles. But this weekend I decided that I didn't like having the closet full of quilt tops that desperately wanted to be finished and delivered to veterans at the local VA hospital. I decided to take Marbles off yesterday and set aside this week to see how many I can get quilted before our meeting next Tuesday. So, if all goes well, all you are going to see from me this week are more veterans quilts. I think you are going to see some great scrap quilts this week.
This one will be great for the fall. It's a flannel string quilt that was pieced on a fabric foundation so it's beefy and going to be very warm and cuddly.
The 2 black side borders on this on were a little full so I chose a big stipple to help me flatten it all out. It worked really well.
Back in January I did a program for the group and introduced 4 easy patterns for veterans quilt and gave out several kits. This one is a kit I prepared using the Blockade pattern. I paired scrappy oranges from a Stash Pack with a single blue fabric and I love the effect.
The color on this photo isn't even close to accurate but you can see that I used one of my favorite pantos, Woven Wind. It's easy and fast and looks great. When you want to quilt 13 quilts in one week you need a lot of easy and fast! These 2 quilts have a hand dyed medium blue backing and were quilted together on the same back and using the same blue variegated thread.
I had one backing piece that was a bolt end that wasn't wide enough for 2 quilts. It was pale blue and was a good fit for this Elvis quilt. Becky has a large collection of Elvis fabric and has decided to use some of them for a couple of veterans quilts.
The quilt couldn't be easier to piece and yet it looks more complicated. She started with this panel of Elvis in uniform.
Then she added 4 borders to finish it off. I love the beer bottle fabric and the celebrity Elvis print. It got my other favorite pantograph of stars and ribbons. When I post later this week I'll post the name of the quilt.
I have the next set of quilts loaded and ready to quilt.
I will get Lost My Marbles back on FloMo today but I decided to get 2 more veterans quilts Tuesday afternoon first. Both of these were made by Betsy and since they were both blue I could quilt them together on one backing and could also use the same thread.
The fabric that she used is so soft and the Jacob's Ladder block made a really nice cuddly quilt.
She made this one using 2 batik fabrics and the Blockade pattern. She said it went together very quickly.
Here you can see the quilting. I really like this pantograph for the veterans quilts.It's a perfect design and it quilts up quickly.
This blue backing that I dyed last month worked perfect for both of these quilts.
I have a huge collection of variegated threads. Some are King Tut and some are Rainbows. I don't use them much anymore on my own quilts so I'm trying to use them up on the veterans quilts.
I've got loads of thread left but I'm finally down one cone! This is all that's left after I finished both of these quilts. How's that for good quilting luck?
One of the fun things about quilting the veterans quilts is seeing the really creative things that people make with their scraps. Peg made this one. I think the blocks started as a quilt for her brother but she felt it was too yellow for him. I think it makes a great happy quilt for a veterans quilt.
I don't remember who made this one. I picked up 18 quilt tops that day so I can't accurately remember all of them. This was made with my Blockade Quilt pattern and it looks great scrappy.
These are quilted with my new favorite pantograph. This quilts up so fast! The backing fabric is bluer than it shows in this photo.
This stack of quilts is ready to be delivered at the meeting next week. Thankfully 2 other quilters volunteered to help get another 8 quilts quilted.
Before I put Lost My Marbles back on I decided I wanted to quilt this scrappy quilt that Mom made. I really, really love this quilt. I originally intended to do a pantograph on it but, after 8 veterans quilts with pantographs, I decided I needed a break. It's still getting simple quilting but it's a step up from a panto and I get to work from the front of the machine.
I'm doing simple Terry Twist in the sashing blocks and straight line crosses in the narrow muslin sashing.
I want to add feathers to this one because I haven't quilted feathers in a while. But I didn't want to feather every large block. I'm going to do Terry Twist in alternating blocks and feathered wreaths in the other blocks. But I'm doing the whole quilt in TT and sashing and then will go back and do the feather quilting.
The quilt has a 4" outside border and that will get feathers too. This one should be quilted quickly. I'm not doing fancy tieoffs and burying threads. This one is meant to be quilted, washed and used. I think my cousin is going to be the recipient and she will love it.
One member of this family (not me) had a great February plan to leave town and go golfing in Tampa. We had nothing but gray skies and rain this weekend while he had 78 and sunny. But for me it was sunny and warm inside and perfect quilting weather.
I decided to take a break from Lost My Marbles and see if I could get some veterans quilts done. At last month's meeting the members had finished 16 tops! I don't think they have ever brought me more than 8 at a time. Fortunately I'm not the only quilter in the group anymore so I was able to deliver 4 each to 2 quilters last week and I started working on some this weekend.
These 2 came from Carol C. who is living in Georgia now but visits here frequently. She mailed these 2 tops to me. She said she was making a queen size quilt but didn't like it. So she took it apart and made these 2 veterans quilts. I love both of these quilts and I love getting quilt tops in pairs because I always quilt 2 at a time.
I went bold and quilted both of these in red thread and used a Woodgrain pantograph.
I think the overall texture looks great on the back.
In between quilting sessions I had a lot of cutting sessions. I started Judy Neimeyer's 4th of July quilt last month at the CSQ sewing days and after that weekend I realized that it was a pain to do all of the cutting and sewing there. I had to take a huge back of supplies and try to keep everything in order as I cut and drew 4 blocks at a time.
It took a long time but I got all of the fabrics cut and foundations ready for the quilt.
The standard quilt is 54 x 71 which is pretty useless for me but it would be a nice sofa size for a gift. For now, I just cut out the regular size but I have all of the foundations to do a queen size. I'll see how I feel after I make the blocks I have prepared.
Now I can leave the bag of leftover fabric and foundations at home and all I have to travel with is the smaller orange bag. It was a ton of work and make a huge mess but it was worth it.
With the remodel on hiatus until the countertops come in, I didn't have any big chores for the weekend so I was able to do some of my own projects...like quilting 2 more veterans quilts. Both of these were made by Betsy, This one is very much her style with red, black and gray reproduction prints.
The Half square triangles in this one are very much a Betsy-style but the batik fabric was a surprise. The mixed taupe shades work so well with it.
The cool think about this quilt is that all of the batik patches came from the same piece of fabric. I quilted both with a taupe thread color and this overall pattern.
I actually used this pantograph but you can see that I really just used the path and did not add the frills. By doing the pattern more simply I quilted I saved a lot of time. So it's OK to simplify a pantograph if you want.
When I trim the quilts I chop up the batting and backing bits and store them in a trash bin until it's full. Well, it was overfull after these 2 quilts and it was time to make some dog beds.
I have decorator fabrics that people have donated to me that I use for the covers and I even use this opportunity to finish off spools of thread.
I use this tutorial to make them.
I also chop up old (but clean) sweats and tshirts and add them to the stuffing mix for these beds.
That big pile of scraps made a small, medium and large bed. One of my friends is on the board of a local rescue agency so I take them to her and she delivers them to the organization. I know that they eventually will end up in the garbage but at least all these things get one more life before they become trash.
But here's something that's going straight in the trash. My friend, Patty, motivated me to finally replace the cover on my ironing table.
Ahhhh, much better.
Our mini kitchen remodel is going beautifully. We really couldn't ask for things to be better but there's no avoiding the noise of saws and hammers and shop vacs. So yesterday I escaped to the basement to quilt two veterans quilts.
I've mentioned many times before that I load and quilt two quilts at a time. I match them up toa hand dyed backing and pick a thread color that I can use on both. This one is a great patriotic quilt that I would expect to go together very easily and quickly. The "block" seems to be a rectangle with tan in the middle, blue on one side and red on the other in varying widths. It's a very clever design.
I shined a light across it so that you could see the quilting. It's my new star/ribbon pantograph that is going to become a staple for me. I quilted both of these quilts in less than 3 hours and that included basting.
This meticulously pieced log cabin was made by Betsy. Even if she had not personally handed the quilt to me I would have known it was hers. Her style is so very distinctive.
Her log cabin blocks have 1" logs!. I used the taupe thread as a way to bring some of the block color into the white with the same pantograph.
I have several more ready to quilt and hope to get to them next week. I'm going to Atlanta this weekend with some friends so I'll get a brief break from the construction zone. But that means no quilting for a few days.
Last year North Carolina was devastated by two hurricanes that produced major flooding in a large part of the state. Residents there are still trying to recover from the effects of Florence and Michael. One of my blog friends (and fellow football addict) is helping with the coordination of gathering quilts for the victims. The latest reports estimate over 4500 homes totally destroyed and over 700,000 have sustained flood damage. It's mind boggling.
There are lots of organizations helping with the rebuilding efforts but these people also need help rebuilding their hearts and souls and that's were we quilters come in. The Carolina Hurricane Project wants to deliver bed size quilts to as many affected households as possible. The goal is one quilt per household. Twin, full and queen size quilts are the requested sizes and there's no set pattern or color scheme. You can send finished quilts or tops with backing.
Maybe you already have a finished quilt that's looking for a loving home.
Get all of the details including shipping locations here. If you can't make a quilt you can help by making a donation to help defray the cost of batting. The project will last through the summer so you have plenty of time to help mend a family in North Carolina.
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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