Laura and I had a fun and productive couple of days at sewing this weekend. She worked on her Stack and Whack turtles quilt. I apologize for these bad photos. I took the with my cellphone at the center and the lighting there doesn't work so well with cameras. You'll have to pretend that the colors look good.
I worked on my Hunter's Star veterans quilt. I got all of the half blocks together and was going to lay them out for the quilt. But since it's scrappy I thought I might be able to shortcut that part. Each fabric makes pieces for 4 blocks. I separated the pieces into 8 stacks with one of each fabric in every stack.
Then I sorted the light stacks on the right side so that I can pair them up with the dark stacks and know that I won't get any duplicates. After all of the blocks are made I should be able to just work straight through the 4 stack to pull the blocks without laying them out.
I got the first stack of blocks together before we packed up for the weekend. This quilt will be done next month and I absolutely love it. The "white" isn't white. It's actually a nice pale gray.
This project is packed away until next month but I'll need to get another cut and ready before then.
I actually have a couple piles of fabric for veterans quilts and I'm working on ideas for them. I'll share that later this week after I have time to do some cutting.
This week I'm also starting to work on another very old UFO! Maybe I'll have one more finish for January.
The first 2 veterans quilts of 2020 are all done, except for binding. Someone in quilt club will volunteer to bind them.
I tried to be bold with the quilting to bring all the dark lines in the African fabrics into the solid squares with navy blue thread.I wasn't sure at first but I like it!
I took a clue from the orange fabrics in the tops and picked a pale orange for the back. The navy blue thread and quilting pattern really shows here and I love it. I'm glad that we have a wide variety of quilt styles to deliver to our doctors and nurses. They uses these quilts to help people who are having difficulty processing their upcoming treatment plans. With such a variety of quilts they have the opportunity to really personalize the quilts to the recipients.
This weekend was our monthly quilt club sewing weekend. I look forward to this weekend every month and I get a little cranky if anything prevents me from spending both days there. I do get a lot done but I always come away with about 10 more ideas for new things but mostly we tell stories and laugh. I try to use those days to work on veterans quilts. I keep the projects packed up and only work on them there.
The first thing I did was finish up this Hunter Star quilt. It started as gradient that I had dyed for another project. It was similar to the Sugar Maple gradient. I added some orange, yellow and green from my stash and I'm really pleased with the way it turned out. I cut it with the Go! Hunter Star die. With the die I can cut out a quilt like this in less than an hour.
But I learned one BIG lesson. This quilt needs to be done in the equivalent of 2 color. It's important to keep up with the way the seams are pressed and a totally scrappy version is a headache from that perspective. So I did a better job on the next one.
This one is going to be very manly. It's made with Crossroads and Earthworks Stash Packs and I paired it with a pale gray from my stash. I probably won't get this one finished until February but I'm going to love it.
This week our friends from England arrive to stay for a couple of months. Laura likes to spend a lot of time in the sewing room so we should get lots done. This week will be a little light on quilting because we are getting ready to take a little trip Saturday but I should have something to share every day.
Remember back in September when I pulled this stack of sunprints out of my stash? The original plan was to make some sort of wall hanging.
I've tried to go through my UFO projects this year and ruthlessly assess the probability of the project actually getting made. This was one of the projects to hit the chopping block. I simply wasn't the least bit motivated to make a wall hanging. But I'm not tossing these projects out. I'm trying to turn them into something else. These got turned into 2 veterans quilts. I've shown them being quilted before but now they are actually done!
I showed how I made these in 2 previous posts: part 1 and part 2. It's a simple approach that would work great for any orphan blocks or focus fabrics.
The backing is a pale hand dyed green and the quilting pattern is this simple (and fast) leaf motif. I think I quilted both quilts in about 2 hours. These quilts were delivered to our coordinator Tuesday.
The next veterans quilt will likely use these fabrics. My friend and I bought fat quarter sets of these years ago. I gave her mine so she could finish a quilt for her brother-in-law. These are all of the leftovers from the quilt and I've decided that I'll use them in a new veterans quilt....that I'll plan to start sewing in January.
I was very focused on my Hunter's Star veterans quilt this weekend at our quilt club sewing days. I learned several really valuable lessons about this pattern. I'm probably doomed to forget those lessons and repeat them at some point.
Hunter's Star is traditionally a 2 color, or 2 value pattern. Now I know that having a 2-color design makes pressing and assembly so much easier! I got about a quarter of the blocks together when I realized that I needed to press half of them differently so that the seams would nest properly when I put the blocks together. But the real challenge came when I was trying to put together the blocks. Not having 2 colors or light/dark, I had to pay out the blocks seam side up to make sure they nested properly. I arranged them in rows and almost got it all together. I have one row pinned in place and 3 or 4 more to add.
Those of you who have made this pattern will also notice that I should have the second row as the top row. That's not really going to matter because I think I'm going to have 11 rows so it will be "right" from one edge. I do have too much dark green on the right side but this is a scrappy quilt and I'm not going to worry about that.
I almost finished it when I came home but this is my quilt club project so it can wait until next month. I wouldn't get it quilted before then anyway. I do like it a lot and it will look great with a leaf quilting motif.
It's only going to take a couple of hours to finish that quilt so I needed to get another kit together. I started cutting this Hunter's Star last Monday with 2 Stash Packs. Then I dyed some pale gray for the "light side" of each block. I got those cut out last night. The darker gray in the middle is the binding. I'm all ready for next month and I'm confident that this one will be even easier and faster than the scrappy one.
The rest of the weekend was spent on chores and quilting the Groovy quilt. The photo in the right is the back. The back and sashing are green because that's the recipient's favorite color. Now I'll turn my attention to binding Patrick's quilt and Groovy. I'm going to hand stitch both on the back so it will take a bit more time.
Friday and Saturday sewing was a lot of fun this weekend and quite productive. I got to try out the new/used Janome 415 machine and it stitches beautifully. The 1/4 inch foot is more like a 3/8" foot so it's useless. I solved that with a piece of masking tape to mark 1/4" on the base. That worked just fine. The tension is perfect and I got about half of my blocks together. After about 50 blocks I realized that I needed to press the blocks in two different directions (out and up vs. in and down) if I wanted this quilt to go together without too much bulk in the seams.
I didn't plan any color arrangement so I wanted to see how it might looks so when I came home I spent about a hour putting all the blocks on the design wall. I love looking at my blocks through the camera. I think it gives a better perspective on how a quilt will look and I LOVE how this one looks. Even with the total "scrappiness" I think the stars stand out nicely. There will be lots more dark fabrics in the final layout. The dark fabrics are mostly on the bottom of the project box since they were cut first.
Using the GO! cutter die makes cutting and piecing very fast. Everything fits together perfectly since I took some time to verify (set) my 1/4" seam.
I did a few other things this weekend with my ice dyed blocks but haven't edited the photos yet. I'll get those shared edited and shared Wednesday.
It's not the most modern upholstery but it looks a lot better than the filthy blue that was on it before. I think I paid less than $50 for this chair many years ago and it's still my favorite, and most comfortable, sewing chair. (I'm not showing the underside.)
I also needed to get a project ready fast. Today is the monthly sewing days with Country School Quilters. I needed a new project to sew on with my new travel sewing machine! I'm looking forward to giving this one a test drive this weekend.
After the great presentation we had Tuesday about all the good that our veterans quilts do, I just had to start another one.
I've had this Hunter Star die for a while and it seems a fine one to start with.
In my stash I found a 3 yard gradient that I dyed a long time ago for another project that fell off the "to do" list. I needed about 6 yards for a veterans size quilt and I found some yellow, a couple of orange fabrics and a green fabric to go with the gradient. There's no plan for color placement. I'm just going to sew a bunch of blocks together and see how it goes. I did starch all of the fabric before I started cutting. I make my own starch with this recipe.
The Hunter Star die looks like this and 4" strips are the perfect size. One pair of strips can make 1 12" block. I run 4 strips through at a time. I can run 6 layers but I get less distortion with 4 layers and it doesn't really take that much longer. I don't know yet if I'm going to make 12" blocks of matching fabrics or make the whole thing scrappy. I'll make some 6" components and see how it looks.
By the time you read this I should be set up and sewing. I even had enough fabric left for binding.
Yesterday I said that I will only make the pet beds from free stuff.
Well, Tuesday night was our annual quilt club Trash to Treasure sale and someone brought a box of upholstery remnants. It didn't have any fragrance scent so I broke my rule and paid a dollar for the whole box! Last night I decided to go through it a precut it into pieces ready to stitch into pet beds.
The size of the bed is determined by the size of the fabric piece. Some are big and some are smaller.
I know that they wash the beds so I don't use fabrics like this that have some sort of backing. I'll probably give her those remnants because they can probably use them for other things.
Out of the whole box these are the only "rejects". Even if they end up in the landfill it's still less than half what was in there.
I also cut up a couple more of the double knit pieces. Someone commented yesterday that if you have double knit fabric that you might donate it to theater groups. They can use them for backdrops because that fabric can be painted. So there's another idea for a stash of double knit.
I'm all set for pet beds for at least a year! I know I'll be going through these at a good rate because 2 of our members recently visited the VA hospital unit where our veterans quilts are donated. It's a unit where people get things like chemo ports inserted. They told them how careful they are about giving the quilts out and how healing the quilts are. They use them a lot for patients that are too angry about their diagnosis to focus on treatment. They say that the quilts really help them to get the patients in a calmer state. I think that report motivated all of our members! I expect the veterans quit tops to start rolling in when I start taking them again in November.
And just like that I've cleared out another UFO and have 2 more quilts ready to quilt for our veterans project. I do need to dye (or find) some binding but there's no rush. I'm taking a couple of months off from veterans quilts so these tops will just go into the veterans quilt closet and be out of sight (and mind) for a while.
Here are the twins side by side. If you look at the diagram below you can see the breakdown of the sections. I knew what size each section needed to be and added strips to get the size right. There's no pattern at all to the way that I applied the strips.
Today my friend and I will be ice dyeing the fabric that we folded yesterday for our new quilt project! It's supposed to be the last hot day and the weather people promise that fall is coming soon.
I didn't do any sewing yesterday. I had my physical in the morning and met up with some friends for lunch followed up with errands and then a very lazy evening. But Tuesday I got started on the second sun print veterans quilt. First I needed more fabric and I found this pretty brown in my stash.
Here's the top half already sewn together!
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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