My main task this week is to get the 4th of July quilt bound. I haven't liked the 4th of July name because my color palette just doesn't fit the theme. I've had a lot of time to think about it while binding and I think I'll call it Fireworks.
Anyhoo.....while binding I thought about something that I discovered a couple of years ago that saves me a lot of time and pin sticks. I used to pin my binding as I stitched and I know a lot of people use those little clips but I discovered that you don't need pins at all!
That's right, I don't use 1 pin when I hand stitch my binding.
What I realized was that even after I took a pin out that I'd readjust the section I was getting ready to stitch so what good was the pin doing me? I really only care about the 1/2 inch ahead of the needle. I just roll the binding over as I go.
I adjust - stitch - adjust - stitch all the way to the corner. I don't use pins in the corners either. I stitch to the point where the 2 edges will miter together.
I fold in the side, adjust the miter and then take one stitch on the corner to tack the miter in place.
Then I stitch the miter on the back.
At the tip stick the needle through to the front and have it come out in the fold of the front miter.
Stitch the miter down the front coming out at the base of the miter.
Stick the needle back through all of the layer and come out at the base of the miter on the back.
One more stitch in the corner to make sure the miter is secure.
And then head down the next side. The whole binding is stitched without the extra time to pin.
This quilt will be ready to show tomorrow!
Once a year or so I like to post a reminder about my Bleeding Quilt article. Almost weekly I get an email from someone telling me about a quilt that was saved. The most recent one was so sweet that I wanted to share it.
The message was from Laurie B.:
Your article about the bleeding quilt saved my mom this afternoon. My mom is 81 years old and she has been working feverishly since October on her first ever quilt for my daughter who is getting married in 2 weeks. she had to spot clean a few little finger sticks of blood and when doing so we noticed that the red was bleeding and also a little blue. She was exhausted and I said "mom lets just google this" we found your article and it kind of was backwards from what we thought as we always heard set the colors with cold water and salt. We trusted you and you were a life savor. A huge project for an older women to take on for a first time. And its a king sized quilt.
Can you imagine someone piecing a KING size Double Wedding Ring as her first quilt? I bow to her guts and perseverance! The wedding was this past weekend and I hope the Granddaughter appreciates what a feat this was and what a treasure this quilt is!
Just goes to show that you can start any hobby at any age.
Hopefully you will never need this information but if you do the instructions are always here. If you want to share this information on your blog or website you are welcome to download this button and can link it to: https://www.colorwaysbyvicki.com/save-my-bleeding-quilt.html#/
My weekend plans changed! I was going to do lots of mosaic, load my next quilt, make some postcards and start a new quilt. I made a little progress on a couple of those things but mostly I spent a few days with my foot elevated because I sprained my ankle WALKING UPSTAIRS! What a klutz! I was lucky though because I had been in the basement to cut glass for a frame. When I fell I dropped the glass and it shattered in dozens of pieces and I didn't get one cut. That's a miracle that makes the sprain no big deal except that it interfered with the great exercise routine that I had going.
The sprain wasn't bad and by yesterday I was up doing some things. I pulled out my shibori scraps that were left over from Loony Moony and I'm starting to play around with some postcard ideas.
But mostly I played around on the computer. I researched and planned a couple of vacations and I got the tutorial written for this quilt. I'm calling it Bars and Stripes and the instructions are basically cutting instructions because the piecing is so easy to figure out. Click on the quilt image to go to the instructions. I even included instructions for a Quilt of Valor version.
Everyone should do some level of kitchen remodel every 20 years or so. I unpacked the cabinets this weekend while I was watching the football games and I can't believe some of the old stuff that I found. I've been gluten free at least 8 years and we still had wheat pasta in the cabinet. I thought I had been keeping the spice cabinet pretty cleaned out but I discovered that I was pretty wrong on that front too. We got a lot of good laughs out of the things we found.
We got it all done and today the work has started and given the Eagles win last night, there's nothing he could do today that would dampen my mood. He could play rap music and I'd be OK with it today.
Regiment is the 4th veterans quilt that I designed for my program tomorrow. the perfect block size for these 48" x 60" quilts is 12" so I decided that for this one I would do straight blocks with no sashing or borders. I don't know what this block is called but it's really just a variation of the Churn Dash, one of my favorite blocks. This is another one that's good for scraps. You could even do both backgrounds as scrappy tonals.
I have a pretty sizable stash of black on white and white on white fabrics. I bought all of them with plans to overdye them. Like the 10 year old pasta in the kitchen, these fabrics have been around at least that long. I'm trying to get them all dyed up this year to use in veterans quilts. The light blue background in this quilt was a black on white fabric. The dark blue was a flawed fabric that I couldn't sell. I dyed it and cut around the flawed areas. The centers are one Midnight Stash Pack of fat eighths. I would have used dark blue for the binding but I didn't have any if that left so I used the extra print.
So I'm all ready for my program tomorrow and I have 10 kits cut out for anyone who wants them. Now it's time to get back to some of my project, like the beaded mosaic wall and Lost My Marbles quilt. I've also got to come up with a project for the monthly Country School sewing days...unless I come home Tuesday night with a bunch of veterans quilt kits.
Well,, I survived the day of countertop shopping. I'm not planning to share photos of any of the work. It's just a kitchen and there's nothing particularly special about it. It's just that it's 20 years old and needs a little refreshing. While the contractor is here he's also doing a laundry list of things that have needed attention for a while. None of it is really photo worthy.
One of the things that we are doing in the kitchen is removing the over-the-stove microwave/vent combo. Doing that in the original design was a giant mistake. If you are considering doing something like that in your own kitchen remodel, you might want to reconsider. The vent part doesn't work all that well and it gets absolutely disgusting. I can't wait to get that thing taken out and replaced with just a vent.
We will be packing up most of the kitchen this weekend and getting ready for work to start Monday so sewing/quilting might be slow.
For now, though, I still have 2 more veterans quilts to share. Before I talk about today's quilt I want to answer a question from yesterday. The veterans quilts that we make are 48 x 60 so that's the size of these patterns. But any of them would be really easy to make larger. The size we make was recommended by the hospital. This size is goof for hospital beds because they don't get caught in the bed mechanism and for people using them while receive treatments, these are perfect for use in a chair.
I called today's quilt Redoubt. When I started working on this one I was looking at a 12" block as the foundation for the quilt.
The foundation of this quilt is this simple spool block. The lantern motif comes from placement of the colors and columns of blocks are separated by 3" sashing.
Now, I know that my version isn't going to appeal to everyone, but I love it. It's a lot brighter in real life and has more purple in it. I wanted to use one of my Galaxy fabrics as a background and I paired it up with lots of different greens.
Here are a couple of other colorways that you might like better. If you want to make one of these you can get the tutorial here.
Well, things are about to get pretty "exciting" around here. We are finally starting a mini kitchen remodel. The best part about it is that the husband of one of my best friends is doing the work. We've waited a long time to have this done because we specifically wanted him. His work is meticulous! So, I'm excited about that part. The allergy-girl half of me is anxious but hoping for the best. Fortunately we can block off that room really well so, at this point, I'm remaining positive. But if I disappear for a day or few over the next month or so, you will know why.
Today I'm doing counter top shopping after my shooting lesson. It seems like a natural transition, doesn't it? I just hope I get to end the day with some quilting or sewing.
But let's get back to quilting. Today's veterans quilt is one that I'm calling Blockade. I think this name actually makes sense since it's a square surrounded by a square. This quilt is great for scraps and jelly rolls because it's all based on 2.5" squares and strips. The finished block size is 6".
This particular one is made with the scraps from my Indonesian batik quilt. I pulled a variety of green hand dyed fabrics to go with it. The color in this photo is actually pretty bad. I promise that the real quilt looks a lot better in real life. The quilt top went together really quickly and I was about to do a lot of string piecing. Then I had fun in EQ designing some alternative layouts.
I think it would be cool to divide a huge variety of scraps into light and dark to make one of these quilts. If you haven't already figured out how to make it you can get the tutorial here.
I was going to wait until I did my program next week before I shared these quilts but this is pretty much all I've been working on so it's all that I have to share!
I've gotten motivated to focus more on the veterans quilts because we have such a wonderful group of nurses at the veterans hospital that make sure these quilts are given to people who appreciate and love them. The nurses are so grateful to have these to give to their patients that really need a boost. I just want to make sure that they always have a supply.
We also have a great set-up at Country School Quilters to make these. We use our dues money and other fundraising money to purchase backing and batting. I used to get printed backing but now I only buy white so that I can dye the backs. Here are a few that I dyed in November and December that are all ready for some quilts. I used to do all of the quilting but now we have 4 longarmers in our group and we share the work.
I decided to do a program for January with 4 new quilt ideas and that's what I have been working on. I wanted projects that were easy and I'm even cutting a couple of kits out of each one for members who don't like to do the cutting step.
This first one is SOOOOOO easy. I decided to call it "Strength" because it's pieced in columns, or pillars....get it? I know, it's a reach, but it was late and that was the best I could do. The real point of this design was to make a quilt that would make great use of large scale prints or other "special" fabrics that just need a little framing to show them off.
For my version I used my "waste" fabrics and I think it created kind of a stained glass look. This could be easily adjusted to make a QOV or bed quilt size. I'm thinking about doing one using all of the Paula Nadelstern fabrics that I've collected with a black background. I think that could look pretty awesome. The kits I made have blue background, red bars and patriotic plaids as the feature fabrics. I think they will make a couple of really cute quilts. I could probably make about 30 kits just with my collection of waste fabrics!
The pattern, such as it is, is here.
They are done! All 11 sets (22 bowls) are done and ready for gifting....except for the 2 I'm keeping for myself.
I wrote a tutorial for the way I made mine. I was really disappointed with all of the other tutorials that I saw online. They looked very pretty in their styled photos but once I read through the steps I knew that none of them would hold up through one trip through the washing machine. I don't know about you, but when I microwave soup or oatmeal there's almost always overspill. These hot pad are going to get washed a lot so I added some steps to make them last.
Get the tutorial here.
For my booth at the AQS Virginia Beach show, I am displaying several quilts but I wanted another way to display the fabrics. After lot of research I discovered Martha Stewart's giant fabric flower. Fabric flowers would be perfect! But I needed mine to hang on a wall instead of filling a vase. So I set out to modify her instructions for my needs. My new tutorial, Big Fabric Flowers, is the result.
I'm going to make several flowers in different sizes and designs but this prototype was designed specifically to show off my Color Wheel fabrics that come in a set of 10.
Here are the 3 flowers for the Color Wheel fabrics and I love them! Color Wheel fabrics come in dark, medium and light shades so there's one flower for each pack. They will be shaped before they are hung but I'm keeping them flat for travel. I used 3 shades of gray/black for the centers.
I have more planned including a bigger one made with a Crystal and flowers of Shibori and Shades Packs.
My weekend was solely an ironing marathon. I had gotten very behind because of my arm. But it's getting better now and I couldn't take the pile of fabric anymore. I ironed, ironed and ironed over 115 yards and I'm much happier.
In between ironing sessions I would sit down for a break and make circles for my 2 applique projects. So since I don't have anything except this stack of unironed fabric to share, today seems a good day to share how I'm doing the applique circles.
For starters, I basically use this process from Leah Day. Her video is very clear and it works great! So start by watching that.
My first step was to decide on the size of circles and cut the Wash-Away Applique sheets and freezer paper in those sizes. I based the size on the size of Go! dies that I have. I used 5" for the shibori and 1" for the centers of my flower applique circles.
Leah doesn't use the Wash_Away Applique sheets but I like them because they stay inside the applique and they prevent anything under that applique from showing through.
I fuse the applique sheets to the back of my fabrics. The biggest thing I learned from Leah was to leave large margins around the applique. I used to trim the fabric to about 1/4" but watching the video I learned how much easier it was to work with them with wider margins.That tip was genius!
Next I fused 2 layers of freezer paper together like Leah recommends and ironed that over the applique sheet.
Then it was time to make some starch. I use this recipe. I don't use much but it's cheap to make. I put a little into a small cup and found a small paintbrush.
With the paintbrush I add some starch just around the edge of the applique shape.
Leah's video give more detail about the process but you can see here how much easier it is to get a great sharp edge when you have more fabric to work with. I just carefully work around the applique painting and pressing with the tip or edge of the iron.
After it's all pressed I'll trim the excess fabric, peel out the freezer paper and press it one more time.
That's a pretty cgood circle!
Here are a set of circles ready to applique.
That hideous background fabric is just something I use to cover the ironing board to protect it from getting a lot of starch on it. That gem is from my Aunt's fabric stash that she gifted to me over 10 years ago.
Marcy is back doing more quilting today so we'll have a post soon to show how to fix a major quilting faux pas.
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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.