Friday, October 25, 2013

Bloggers' Quilt Festival, Fall 2013 #2

It's that time of year again - Bloggers' Quilt Festival!  I love the opportunity to see so many other lovely quilts out there in Blogland, all in one place.  It *almost* makes up for seeing all the lovely new fabric at Quilt Market.  Almost ;)

Earlier this year, my sister and I made this quilt for my parents.  They were serving a mission with our church in Bogota Columbia for a year and a half.  They came home early last spring before heading out on another mission this past summer, this time serving in Huancayo, Peru for the next three years.  My sister came up with the idea to make them a quilt, so working with our other siblings, we made them this.
We decided that since we were working on this long-distance (she lives on the west coast, and we're on the east coast), a layer cake would be the way to go so that we could have a fun, scrappy, yet still coordinated look.  V&Co's Simply Color line was perfect - lots of fun patterns in great colors.
We used Amanda Jean's Fair and Square pattern, just sized up to make it a throw quilt.  I'm the oldest of five kids, and each of us and our families are represented by one block - a boat for a brother who sails, a globe for a sister in the State Department who lives abroad, the Union Jack for a brother who served his mission in England, mountains and a tree for a sister who camps a lot, and the beach for our family since we love the beach. 
Each of the eight grandchildren are represented by their handprint. The tiny hot pink, unnamed hands belong to our youngest daughter - we hadn't picked out her name yet :)
We also threw in some blocks that meant something to my parents or our family - the flag from our summer beach trips, maps of Peru and Columbia which is where my parents' missions have been, a map of North Carolina which is where we grew up, bikes since my parents love to ride, a watering can and shovel for my mom's love of gardening, and the Oakland temple where my parents were married.  
I had only done machine applique once before, so this quilt certainly stretched my abilities. 
I kept the quilting simple - just a wavy stitch on my machine lengthened out.  I think it turned out pretty well.
The backing was also simple, and definitely in my wheelhouse, with two large panels and a pieced bit in the middle.
A simple binding in the blue ikat finished it off.
My parents loved the quilt, and my mom even cried when she opened up the package.  They appreciated all the time, effort, and love that went into it.  And now they have a little piece of each of us while they're living so far away for the next three years.

Now go check out all the other lovely quilts over at Bloggers' Quilt Festival, and thanks for stopping by!
AmysCreativeSide

Bloggers' Quilt Festival, Fall 2013

It's that time of year again - Bloggers' Quilt Festival!  I love the opportunity to see so many other lovely quilts out there in Blogland, all in one place.  It *almost* makes up for seeing all the lovely new fabric at Quilt Market.  Almost ;)
This quilt is one of my current favorites.  I have a major crush on Bonnie and Camille's older line Ruby.  The stack of it that I've hoarded/stashed is impressive.  In my defense, this is my second finished quilt using it, I have a third in the quilting stage, and a fourth one planned.  But who's kidding who - that's only going to make a dent in it. Oh, well.  Time to plan more projects!

Anyway, not only is the fabric one of my favorites, but the recipient is one of my favorite people too.  Meet Anne.  She's our youngest daughter, born at the end of August.
The combination of Ruby and our new baby was a match made in heaven, I think.  But I am a little biased.
Anyway, I wanted to keep things simple to show off the amazing fabric and because I was finishing this in my last few weeks of pregnancy.  I literally finished sewing on the binding two nights before she was born.  Enter the lovely hourglass block.  Again, a match made in heaven.
 I kept the quilting simple as well - just straight lines 1/4" on either side of the diagonal seam lines.  Enough to keep it all together, but not so much that it overwhelmed the gorgeous fabric or made it overly stiff.
Who doesn't love a good stripey binding?
 And a simple backing in the pink large floral.  Perfect for a little girl.
 All in all, this quilt makes me so happy.  Hopefully Anne will love it too!
Now go check out all the other lovely quilts over at Bloggers' Quilt Festival and at Amanda Jean's, and thanks for stopping by!

AmysCreativeSide

Friday, October 18, 2013

I'm back! (again...)

So, do you remember how I was allegedly going to start posting regularly again?  Clearly, that didn't happen.  I have a really good reason, though, I promise.  While my sewing machine was certainly going throughout the summer, I was also a little busy on the home front.  Here's why :)
Meet Anne, our newest addition to the family.  She's a sweetheart, sleeping and eating happily throughout the day (the evenings are a different story, unfortunately). Her older siblings are quite taken with her, wanting to hold her and help with her all day.  The biggest disagreements they have these days are over whose turn it is to hold her.

In the spring, I set myself a goal to finish five quilts before she arrived.  I'm happy to report that I was able to finish all five and even sew another quilt top before the big day.  Hooray! 

My first finish was for my parents.  They were serving a mission with our church in Bogota Columbia for a year and a half.  They came home early last spring before heading out on another mission this past summer, this time serving in Huancayo, Peru for the next three years.  My sister came up with the idea to make them a quilt, so working with our other siblings, we made them this.
 We decided that since we were working on this long-distance (she lives on the west coast, and we're on the east coast), a layer cake would be the way to go so that we could have a fun, scrappy, yet still coordinated look.  V&Co's Simply Color line was perfect - lots of fun patterns in great colors.
We used Amanda Jean's Fair and Square pattern, just sized up to make it a throw quilt.  I'm the oldest of five kids, and each of us and our families are represented by one block - a boat for a brother who sails, a globe for a sister in the State Department who lives abroad, the Union Jack for a brother who served his mission in England, mountains and a tree for a sister who camps a lot, and the beach for our family since we love the beach. 
Each of the eight grandchildren are represented by their handprint. The tiny hot pink, unnamed hands belong to Anne - we hadn't picked out her name yet :)
We also threw in some blocks that meant something to my parents or our family - the flag from our summer beach trips, maps of Peru and Columbia which is where my parents' missions have been, a map of North Carolina which is where we grew up, bikes since my parents love to ride, a watering can and shovel for my mom's love of gardening, and the Oakland temple where my parents were married.  
I had only done machine applique once before, so this quilt certainly stretched my abilities. 
I kept the quilting simple - just a wavy stitch on my machine lengthened out.  I think it turned out pretty well.
The backing was also simple, and definitely in my wheelhouse, with two large panels and a pieced bit in the middle.
A simple binding in the blue ikat finished it off.
My parents loved the quilt, and my mom even cried when she opened up the package.  They appreciated all the time, effort, and love that went into it.  And now they have a little piece of each of us while they're living so far away for the next three years. Quilt #1 on my to-do list - done!

Now go check out the other finishes over at Amanda Jean's!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The Other Side of the Quilt

I'll be honest -  pieced backs are not my favorite aspect of a quilt.  While I love the look, the work involved is sometimes a bit more than I want to deal with right after finishing up the top.  So if it's a baby quilt, I just dial it in and use one piece of fabric.  I have four kids six and under.  Something's got to give.

For a bigger quilt, though, it's time to put on my big-girl sewing pants and piece.  I like for my backs to be simple and somehow reference the front.  So here are some of my personal favorites -

This back is from a quilt I made two years ago for a dear friend who was moving.  I love the two large panels with the vertical piece in the middle, taken directly from the front of the quilt. 

This next quilt was also made two years ago, for another dear friend who moved.  Again, it has two large panels with a pieced bit in the middle.  This time, the hourglasses loosely referenced the triangles from the front.
 
 
 This next back was for a baby quilt (my only pieced back ever for a baby quilt - you can tell it was a very good friend!).  This one was a joint effort with Amy over at amylouwhosews.  Maybe that's why I pieced the back - she quilted and bound this one!
This quilt is one I made last year for my niece.  Again, two large panels (anyone noticing a pattern here?) with some triangles, leftovers from the front.  I kind of really love this quilt, and Kate Spain's amazing Central Park fabric.
 
 This last back comes from a current WIP.  This time, I went with two horizontal panels (mixing it up a bit!) with a pieced strip using leftovers from the front.  I love Ruby by Bonnie and Camille.  I also love this quilt :)
And there you have it - all the pieced backs I've ever done.  All five of them ;)  Maybe one day I'll branch out and try something different for my backs.  Time to go visit Katie over at Swim Bike Quilt for some inspiration!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Hello again!

I'm sorry to be less than regular in my blogging of late.  No worries - my sewing machine has been humming along at an impressive (for me) clip for the past few months.  But, if you might recall, last spring I finished a quilt for my niece.  It still makes me happy.  Well, there is supposed to be a matching quilt for my other niece, and in between some machine difficulties and general lack of enthusiasm for tackling what I now know from experience will be a long and tedious process, that quilt got put at the bottom of my sewing to-do list.  For an embarrassingly long time. 

So every project I've worked on since finishing that first quilt last year has felt like I've been two-timing that second quilt.  And since somehow not blogging about the other projects means that the second quilt won't find out about them, not blogging has made me feel better about my cheating.  Crazy, right?  Significant progress has finally been made on the second quilt of late, though, so I feel like I can come out of my sewing closet about my other recent finishes. 

Enough writing.  It's time for some pretty pictures, right?  So my friend AmyLouWho and I have been busy sewing up a storm for some of the many babies that have been popping up around here.  And can I just say, I love collaborative efforts?!?  They are awesome. 

This one was for a friend who was expecting her second, a little boy.  I've had a *major* crush on Nicey Jane since it first came out, and I *might* have stashed/hoarded a small mountain of it.  Seriously.  I finally overcame my fears, though, and made that first cut.  It was so hard!
I used Oh, Fransson's Charm square baby quilt pattern for this one, with a few modifications.  My favorite baby quilt size is 40" x 48", so I increased the square size to 6" unfinished.  The horizontal sashing also grew to 2.5" finished, with the top and bottom coming in at 5" finished. 
Amy did the quilting on this one - some happy loops/figure eights running horizontally.  Great work, Amy!

While I like the look of a pieced back, on a baby quilt, it's just too much work for me.  So a happy panel of the bubbles did the trick.
 With some lovely striped binding to finish it off.
While cutting into Nicey Jane may have initially been painful (and I may have taken advantage of some sales to restock/add to my mountain), in the end, it was worth it.  Seven months after finishing it, this quilt still makes me smile. 

And since Amy and I finished four more quilts in January and February alone, in addition to the one we're currently working on and some solo projects I've had, I've got enough happy quilts to keep this little blog going for awhile now!  Hopefully :)

Friday, October 26, 2012

Joseph's quilt

My younger sister (not so) recently had a son, which meant it was time to make him a quilt.  I love baby quilts - their size makes them quick finishes.
I mostly used the tutorial from Elizabeth at Don't Call Me Betsy's Sliced Coin quilt along.  I modified it somewhat to make it baby quilt sized.
I've loved these whales since I first saw them, and when I finally saw them in person, it was over.  They came home with me just for this quilt.  I also included the Half Moon Modern polka dots, the cross-hatch from Echo, and stripes and argyle from Remix to go along with the whales.  I think it makes a cheerful combination.
Those awesome whales came back for the backing.
The stripes made a fabulous binding.
I kept the quilting simple, just some double echo quilting around the columns, with double lines in the middle of the columns and evenly spaced down the length.  One of these days I'll venture into the world of free-motion quilting, but not quite yet.

My little helper :)
Anyway, I love how cheerful the quilt is, and I hope its new little owner loves it too!
Details -
Size - 40" x 49"
Quilted by me
Baby quilt

Thanks for stopping by!  Now enjoy all the other amazing quilts!
Amy's Creative Side