Monday, December 23, 2013

Better late than never

I just finished quilting this project.  It's a Sandy Gervais panel that I bought at the Des Moines quilt show on October 2.  I thought it would be cute for Thanksgiving.  Actual completion date: December 22.  So I am 11 months early for next year.  I still have to put the binding on.  I hope I get in a mood to do that before November.

 I followed the printed lines to define the various motifs, adding kernels to the ear of corn and some seed-pod type pointy leaves to those purple circles.  The borders are a swirly design using a variegated thread.  The background is more tightly quilted with ivory thread in a McTavishing design.
 More details . . . 
The bowl is quilted with wavy stripes in ivory thread between the printed wavy stripes.
Just for fun!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

T-Shirt quilt for my niece

I finally finished the T-shirt quilt for my niece.  It is sized to fit a double or queen mattress.  


This is pieced in a semi-improvisational manner. The black around the sides is not a solid - see detail photo below.  

Yes, it's busy.   When I designed the piecing plan, it seemed like a great idea to use a big assortment of black and white prints to set off the variety of T-shirts.  But as a finished quilt, I think there is just too much going on.  If I were to make a quilt like this again (heaven forbid!), I would choose fabrics that do not compete with the t-shirt designs.  So this quilt has taught me a design lesson.

I quilted it with a free-style wavy design.  I like the way the quilting turned out.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Card Trick

I recently finished quilting this "Card Trick" top for a customer.  She chose a pretty assortment of batik fabrics for this pattern.

 From the back, you can see the winding vine pattern of the quilting.  The border fabric has a leafy vine motif, which inspired my choice of how to quilt this top.

And here is how it looks on the front.  I wanted the quilting to be subtle so that it would not overpower the beautiful fabrics and the block pattern that she chose.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

T-Shirt Quilt

My only niece has decided that she wants a T-shirt quilt made from all of the shirts she saved from high school and college.  Of course I said "yes", even though the only thing I know about T-shirts is that they stretch and/or shrink.

So first I had to buy the book T-Shirt Quilts Made Easy by Martha Deleonardis.  Armed with the essential information, I have attacked the project with a vengeance.

It is slow going, because I am designing on the fly.  Here's a sneak peek of the center panel.  I chose the black and white fabrics to set off the multi-color T-shirts.


And here is my workspace:

Creativity is messy.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Challenges



A friend brought me a wall hanging that her daughter had pieced at a quilt retreat class.  The daughter was unhappy with the piecing method that had been taught in the class because the quilt did not go together properly.
Here are some photos of this poor quilt with "issues".


The Lone Star pattern is NOT an easy project.  Piecing errors in the center tend to multiply at the edges.  Compare this edge of the quilt with the straight line of the blue tape.  Uh-oh!















 See the pink pin that is sticking up in the air?  That pin represents the measurement from across the center of the quilt.  This upper right corner is almost an inch wider than it should be.
Same thing on the left side. The quilt is only 43" across the center, but is almost 45" at the top edge.






Here is what happens as a result:  wavy edges and lots of extra fabric in all the wrong places.  A properly pieced quilt would have straight edges and would lay nice and flat from this angle.

My challenge as the quilter is to tame this top!  I have to pin it to match the measurements at the narrowest part, and quilt it so that all of the extra fabric is eased in.  It is never going to be perfectly straight and flat, but I can get it to behave sufficiently to serve as a table topper or wall hanging.

Of course, I forgot to take a photo of the completed project before I returned it to my customer!  Considering all of the problems, I was pleased that I could finish it and get it to lay flat.  

And now we need to find a better method for constructing a Lone Star . . .  

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Roses


My customer brought me these blocks which had been embroidered by her sister, who is now deceased.  She wanted an open quilting design because she wanted the finished quilt to be soft (sometimes when very dense designs are used, the quilt tends to be stiff).  My goal was to fill the open space without overpowering the embroidery. 



I used a leaf design for the sashing, and a hooked feather for the outer borders.  My customer was happy, so I am happy.  

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Take Five!

Just completed this "Take Five" pattern, made by my sister-in-law.  I used a whimsical free-motion pattern for the entire quilt surface.
At the top you can see the pins holding the layers to the quilt frame.  I just start at the top left corner and work the designs free-hand as I go toward the top right corner.
The pins with the red flower heads are lined up along the left-hand side edge.  This is another view of the quilting design.  Free-motion quilting results in some variety of the quilting motifs as they are worked to fit in together to produce an evenly quilting surface.
Here is the finished quilt, with the backing and batting trimmed to 2" all around the edges.  This was a fun project!