my creative pursuits with quilts and knits

Small projects

We have been on a family vacation, and I wanted some hand work to take along for the plane rides and long trips in the car.

I am using a skein of Dizzy Blonde yarn/colorway Run Amok to make a scarf.

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I wound the yarn into two balls, and I am waiting to see how long it is after one ball before I decide if it is too wide.  I generally prefer skinny, long scarves, but I am trying to keep an open mind.  Plus, I am basically lazy and don’t want to rip it out to start over!

For my second project, I jumped onto the English paper pieced hexagon craze.  No scissors on airplanes, so I prepped a bunch of pieces before leaving home.

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I am making diamond units, and I plan to use an argyle pattern, so there will be solid color sections with white Xs.  These are 3/4-inch hexagons so this piece will probably end up as a wall hanging.

True Blue progress

Today Vicki is taking stock of her dream projects, so it’s time for an update on my next BIG quilt.  My college class was nicknamed “True Blue 92” so I am making a blue and white quilt with 92 stars.  I shared the layout in this post.

Here are the latest blocks.

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I am trying to use a different blue fabric in each block so it will take some time to collect that variety.  I am using patterns from Quilter’s Cache, and many are paper pieced.  I need to do more organizing in my sewing room to find the blocks I made when I first had the idea for this quilt…way back in the fall of 2013!

Alternatives

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I was putting together the blocks for the 2014 Mod Mod Sampler from Block Lotto, and here is my epic fail at sewing curves.  I have successfully made Drunkard’s Path blocks with quarter circles, but these semi-circles were too much.

I needed to come up with something else for that space in the quilt.  I looked at some traditional blocks, but this is a Modern Modular design.  So I improvised, first trying string piecing.

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Then I turned to my favorite bit of quilting, the 2-1/2″ square.  I had a stack of red and blue squares and I needed a 7×7 grid to make my 14″ block.  Here is the arrangement I came up with.

imageNow I just need one more 14″ block and I can finish the sampler.

I keep sewing the split 9-patch as my leader-ender project.

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I have sewn 76 blocks, and I want 120 to make a quilt top.

 

Pattern Shop open!

for sale sign

My love of the quilting process has led to designing patterns.  You can find the details on a separate page of this website, just look for the button at the top right corner of your screen.  I am selling these pdf downloads through Craftsy.  I hope to have several more available over the coming months.

Happy stitching!

Sewing for Me!

I loaded one of my own projects on the longarm this morning.  When I checked my notes, I found it this is the first time all year that I am working on something I will keep!  It’s my Women of the Bible quilt.  The blocks were sewn from October 2013 through September 2014.  I decided on a simple stitch-in-the-ditch outline of the primary element in each block, with free-motion feathers in the borders.

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I won’t win any awards for my ditch quilting becauseit gets pretty wobbly, but since this is not going to be judged I am not stressing over it. My plan is to hang the finished quilt in the room at church where my adult Sunday School class meets.

I made another block for my True Blue stars: image

And I am still working on split 9-patch blocks as my “leader-ender” (in-between-other-things) project.image I need to count them to see if I am halfway to a quilt top yet.  My goal is a 60″x80″ quilt for QOV and that will take 120 blocks.  Scrappy heaven!

Quilt Math

I woke up early to the sound of thunder!  One of my favorite things about living in Phoenix are the summer storms, but this is unusual.  Our monsoon rains come in July and August, but this weather is caused by the tropical storms hitting the west coast of Mexico.  The overcast skies make it a perfect day to continue working on my True Blue stars quilt!

The quilt has to have 92 stars, but planning is tricky because 92 does not fit into a rectangle or square layout.  The closest I can use is 9×10.  Yes, that is only 90 blocks, but if I put some smaller stars somewhere, I can get to the total of 92.  Here is a mock-up using 88 star blocks.  I changed the two center squares to use 4 smaller stars and I will applique some college references in the blank space.

blue plan

I have a list of 44 blocks to work with and I am using different color combinations in each block.  By 2017 I will have a lovely collection of scrappy True Blue 92 stars!  Current tally…17 done??  I need to find that safe storage spot where I hid some of the blocks…my notes say I finished the first six back in November of 2013! Lesson learned, I now have an old show box to keep all my finished blocks.

More math – instead of paper piecing some blocks, I am going to use regular piecing since the next block is quarter-square triangles and square-in-square units.  Easy enough to sew, but I never remember the measurements to start with.  SO, a quick google search led me to allpeoplequilt.com and they recommend adding 1-1/4″ to the finished size of a QST, then cut on both diagonals before sewing.  Bonnie Hunter at quiltville.com has a handy chart for square-in-a-square units.

What are you sewing today?

You can see from the button on my sidebar that I have an epic, long term project in the works.

It is my True Blue 92 stars quilt.  The plan is to make 92 star blocks in blue and white to commemorate my 25th college reunion in 2017.image

I found my patterns on Quilter’s Cache.  Today, I paper pieced a block called “Belted Star.”

imageMy initial plan was to use 44 blocks, and make 2 of each with 4 corners to make 92 stars.  I have adjusted that plan a bit.  Of course, I lost the scrap of paper where I drew the most recent layout, so back to the sketch book.

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