Wednesday, October 30, 2013

StarLuna is finished!

I finished the quilting and binding on my StarLuna Sampler and it's ready to rehang at the store tonight. Quilting really brings a quilt to life, so I'm glad I brought it home and finished it. I will start this Sampler Club on Monday, Nov. 11.
I wasn't sure if the stripe would be too much on the binding, since I had used it as a border, but I really like it.
I know a lot of people worry about using stripes in quilts, but using them on borders and bindings is pretty much worry free.
I'm happy with the way the threads blend with the fabric and don't take away from the quilt itself. Or at least I hope it doesn't.
This floral made a perfect backing for this quilt and the striped binding looks great with it too.
I have a class with the beginners tonight to get their quilt tops ready to finish next week. I'm excited to see what they have accomplished since last week. At some point, I need to do a little prep work for my It's All in a Name class before Saturday, too....tomorrow's another day, right?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sunday sewing....and letters class!

I love getting ready to quilt a new project...deciding which thread to use, which's fun to think about how it will look when completed. The quilting takes the quilt so far!

I had this quilt hanging at the store for a couple of weeks unquilted because I just couldn't get to the quilting before it needed to be seen there. But when I had to rehang it on Saturday, I decided to bring it home and try to get it done...they look so much prettier quilted. Since the setting triangles are yellow as well as some of the background, I decided to use this gold variegated thread. I didn't want it to stand out too much in the part of the background that was white either.
Here I am, ready to quilt! I used the Leafage pantograph, which I love!
The thread blended so well in the first rows, that I couldn't see it as I was quilting! Once I got into the body of the quilt, it was much more evident.
The middle! I am always happy to see the middle, especially when I'm on a time crunch...I ended up going to some Open Houses with my daughter for awhile, then came home and got busy again.
Ahhhhh....the end! Love when I see that coming! I will be teaching this sampler quilt as a Sampler Club class beginning in a couple of weeks.
 What do you think about striped binding? I used it as a border and debated whether it would be too much to use it again in the binding, but decided I had to since it would make such a graphic binding. I love strips, especially diagonal stripes!
There are still spots open in Saturday's It's All in a Name free-piecing letters class at Cut Up and Quilt if you have been itching to try something new. There are so many ways to use these letters and learning the technique is just plain fun! I posted about some of the quilts I've made here...from wall quilts to baby quilts. Come and join us for a day of free-piecing creativity!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Curvy Saturday

I spent the day helping students cut and sew together their curvy Central Park blocks. Sherbet colors for her lights...
Lots of shades of purple for hers...see the black and whites sprinkled through?
Now we see some darker fabrics starting to blend in with the lighter as we added some mediums to the mix.
The purples are joined by pretty! We liked the fact that Betty matched her quilt!
After I got home from class, I pieced the backing fabric together for my newest sampler. I had taken it to the store so people interested in taking the class could see it, but I decided to bring it home and quilt it and then rehang it there. So I got it prepped and ready for some Sunday quilting. More on that to get Monday started!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Building a quilt, block by block

 One of the things that is fun about teaching classes is that you can share the excitement the students have when they finish their first blocks. Last night was no exception...they made their most complicated block so they were really happy when they got them finished.  (the picture above is last week's Four Plus Four blocks).
We are meeting Wed. night so that they can decide what they will put together to finish. They can make more blocks and make a throw, or use just a few for something smaller, like a runner or table topper. I'm excited to see how many blocks they will have finished and what their plans are.
I have several different quilts I use for beginning quilting classes. This one is more like a sampler class than the others, but I like to offer it occasionally as the students have more choice in their final project.

 I think it's important for them to learn the finishing steps too. I don't teach machine quilting, but teach them how to layer, pin, tie and baste the edges of their quilts. Those steps help if they want to finish them in other ways as well. Then they learn  how to figure out the fabric for their binding, make and attach it.

I'm really proud of how well they have done and look forward to helping them finish their projects!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Back to back

I decided to use this gray/teal/brown/green dotted fabric for the back of the baby Lotus quilt. It is one of my favorite fabrics in the quilt. I'm not sure what I will use for the binding yet. I have enough of several of them left, and can't decide at this point...

Tonight is my last block class with the beginners. I'm offering a finishing class for them in 2 weeks. They can take their blocks and make them into a throw or a runner and learn to finish their quilt. I'm excited to see how many blocks they've gotten finished since last week.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Some eye-popping blocks

I spent some quality time with some great quilters last night in the Sampler #17 Club. They worked on their fourth block amid chatting and laughter.
They got out their other blocks to help them decide what fabrics to use on the new block so I was able to snap some pictures.
Lots of color combinations make these blocks stand out. They are a great group to work with! We've also been working on a stash assessment in the sampler clubs as part of a project coming up in Jan. so we talked about the final colorwheel quarter and what was needed to fill it.
After we put this quilter's blocks up, we noticed a couple of tweaks were needed. I love her red, white and blue color choices...very striking!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Busy busy baby quilt...

I finished sewing the blocks together on the Lotus baby quilt yesterday. I  love the colors and patterns! This quilt pattern is fast and easy to make. I made a couple of versions last out of batiks. Now I need to get a backing fabric and get it ready to quilt.

I also spent some time on class prep stuff.  I had cut some samples using the ZigZag ruler during the demos I did at Cut Up and Quilt in Sept.  I will be teaching that class next month and I want to have as many visuals as possible, so I sewed some of them into squares. I'm not going to sew them together right now, they are more fun to play with this way. Then I got some strips ready for a demo for class.

Then I cut some demo pieces for the Central Park class this weekend, and got the paperwork ready for the Starflower Cascade class. Teaching classes is more than making a model and showing up for class...there's a lot of prep work involved. I like to show variations on patterns too, if I can, so that people get some other ideas of what to do with the same pattern during class. Especially if they are buying a specialty ruler. Those rulers make our lives easier, but they add up! If you are going to use them multiple times, they seem like a better buy.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Sewing days soothe the soul....

I know that title sounds pretty cheesy, but it was great to sew with my retreat buddies yesterday after such a hectic week. We laughed and ate and got lots of sewing finished! Dianne made the above quilt all in one day! Sorry I don't know the title of the's one of those 3 yd. quilt patterns by Fabric Cafe
 Pat keeps working on her string blocks, they are looking so good!
 Diana made a lot of progress on her John Deere quilt, as well as interfering with my picture-taking! (I haven't posted the pic of your "pose" Diana, but I still have it just in case I need it.)
 I started and made a lot of progress on a Lotus Quilt for my soon to be born great-nephew. I love the fun colors and great modern design of this quilt. I hope to get some time to work on it today.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Beginners building a quilt!

 The Four Patch Petunia class learned how to make and square up half square triangles Thursday night. They caught on very quickly!
 They each got 2 finished, then we played with 2 of the sets to show some other settings that can be done with this block. The idea is to make 2 in class and then make 2 for homework if they want 16 blocks to make a throw. I will teach some finishing classes for this group as well.
The bookfair went well, and my parent helpers helped me pack it up yesterday before they left. Now it's just a matter of filling out the paperwork. People can also order online for another week, so I might get a few more sales that way. I purchased lots of books for the library from the fair since there are always a lot of current books the kids love. 

 I"m headed today to sew with my retreat buddies...we are having a sewing day to plan the next retreat! Should be fun...I want to work on a quilt for my great nephew...he will be making his appearance on
11-12-13 so I don't have much time! I hope you are having a quilty Saturday!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Busy bookfair and class week!

It's been a busy week, with the Scholastic Bookfair and 3 night classes....I would like to join Smokey today and enjoy some fabric fun! She knows all the best places to hang out!

The bookfair is going well, I've had good parent/grandparent helpers and the kids are enthusiastic. I restocked all the popular books that sold out the first day and night yesterday, so I am ready for more shopping! I like to get lots of the current paperbacks (barbie, lego, ninja turtles...) for the younger kids from the fair, so I'm going to try to do some shopping for the library today. It's been pretty hectic, since I have been keeping the library open for most of the day, closing it to open the bookfair for about 1 1/2 hours each day. Tomorrow is the last day and then I'll pack it up and send it back.

I'm teaching the 3rd session of the Four Patch Petunia beginning piecing class tonight. They are a fun group of students and that class always flies by!

I'm looking forward to a retreat planning/sewing day on Saturday with my retreat buddies...can't wait!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Sparkling Prisms galore!

Learning a new technique is always fun and the students on Saturday seemed to enjoy learning how to paper piece using freezer paper. We also got to see what this pattern looks like out of lots of different fabrics.
You can use this method of pp for any pattern.

Yesterday was a busy day at school as I finished setting up the bookfair and holding previews for most of the classes. I have 3 more previews to do this morning and then the fun begins! I will be keeping the library open for student checkout part of the day, and having bookfair hours each day so thave kids can  come in and buy books from the fair. Tonight I will keep it open for parents to come and shop with their kids. It should be a fun event as there is a family activity tonight too.