Sunday, March 29, 2015

A scrapilicious finish!

 I spent Sunday finishing the Summer Fling stringpieced  quilt, with a little help from my friends...
 They do love to quilt!

I had some problems with top thread breakage throughout the quilting of this quilt, so I was really happy to get it off the frame. I changed the needle twice and tried slowing down (it's an easy, flowy panto, so it's easy to go too fast), which didn't seem to make any difference. That leaves the thread and batting.  I used a new spool of variegated thread, so maybe it's to blame. I had two pieces of the same cotton batting, and used some of it for another quilt recently and had no problems. So I'm still not sure what happened. It's really frustrating, though!

 The color isn't as true on these last 2 pics as I took them in the kitchen and not outside, but you can see the binding and label up close. It is sewn on now.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Lone Stars bursting with color!

 I met with the quilters for the second session of the Lone Star quilt today. I was excited to see how far they had gotten since the first class 2 weeks ago.  Becky had her center all sewn together, and got her set in corners all sewn in during class. She chose vibrant batiks for the center and another batik with blues and pinks for the background.
 Pat also chose batiks in her favorite colors of browns and teals. She cut and got two of her set in sections sewn in.
Pat F
 Betty used eleven shades of blue. So rich and beautiful. She had  most of her set in sections sewn in when she got there, finished that and then worked on her first border. I had used the background so that the star would look like it was floating.
 Dianne used bright solids and prints to make this sparkling version. If you notice, her colors rotate from red to purple and back to red.

 Cheri used blacks, grays and yellow for this beauty...someone asked her who was getting this quilt and she said ME! We all smiled.

Julie had gotten most of her strip sets sewn together during the first class, but then was worried about cutting it alone, so worked on cutting the strips and sewing diamonds together during this second class. She used 1930's reproduction prints for a soft, antique look. She finished four diamonds today! 
It was a very productive morning and these Lone Stars are well on their way to being finished quilts! I can't wait to finish my working model now!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

This and that from class

Cindy's Beyond the Stars Sampler
 I started the week off with two sampler clubs Monday and Tuesday nights. It's always fun when quilters bring in finished tops from my classes to show off! Cindy made another version of the Beyond the Stars Sampler recently using her stash of frog fabrics. There are frogs in some of the centers of her blocks. She says this quilt is HERS!
Dianne's Lone Star
 Dianne is part of a group of quilters that meet on Tuesdays to sew and this is what I saw when I walked in to class Tues. night....she is ready for her set in corners! Those Lone Stars do make a splash!
Marilyn's Row by Row
 Monday night's Sampler Pick quilters are all working on different samplers and coincidentally, three of them had repeating blocks.  Marilyn got one of her three Lady of the Lake blocks finished.
 Two are working on the Carpenter Wheel Spin and have to make eight of these Half and Half blocks. Even though the block looks simple, we worked on some tips for matching up those HST to make straight lines.
Dorothy worked on cutting two blocks at once and didn't get either finished, but will have them finished by next time!

It's challenging for me to keep up with several different quilts being made at the same time, but it keeps things hopping and the students learn a lot from each other during these classes as they see what the others are working on.

Tuesday night's Highlights class went well. They worked on the Eccentric Star blocks, which is the alternate block for this quilt, so they have to make eight, They all got a good start but no one finished. That's ok as they have several months to get them done.

I quilted a couple more passes last night on Summer Fling, and am getting closer to the end. I'll try to work on it a bit tonight too. 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Scrapilicous weekend sewing

Summer Fling
What do you do with your leftover fabrics from projects? I love scrappy projects anyway and sometimes it's just fun to cut them up and start string piecing. I started this one a couple of weeks ago and made some real progress over the weekend. I started by sewing lots of strings/strips together. I also sorted out some larger pieces to make solid blocks for balance. I was afraid the hexie pattern would be lost if I used only string pieced blocks. I took a few pictures as I worked...

I found this silly tree fabric while shopping and thought it would be perfect for the backing. For me, this fabric is an optical illusion...when I first saw it I thought it was just random blue striped shapes as there was so much green. Then I realized it was trees. hmmmmm....what do you see?

I had used this pink polka dot fabric as the backing on a Peas in a Pod quilt a few years ago, and I think it will be perfect for the binding.
I worked on quilting it  yesterday and plan to finish it sometime this week.
I'm meeting with a Sampler Club tonight...they are starting new quilts. That's always fun and exciting to see what fabrics they have chosen. I"ll keep you posted!

Friday, March 20, 2015

What... Friday already?

It's been a busy week around here. I've been working on a new quilt plus getting paperwork and other necessary jobs done for the Circle and Spin Plus class. I have taught the Circle and Spin technique many times, it's always been a class favorite. But a year or so ago I made a new version of it for my daughter ( all of my daughters have a Circle and Spin quilt!). She loves blues and purples and batiks, so I started beefing up my stash, but I had long been wanting to try some smaller circles and decided to make some hot spots using reds/oranges/golds. I wasn't sure if she would like it, so I let her decide before I sewed it together. She did and a new version was born! I haven't ever taught this version, so I will be teaching it in May. (Warning: if I make you a quilt, I may borrow it back to use as a class model.)

I met with the Sunbonnet Sue Sampler Club Wednesday night. Two of the members couldn't come, but Marta and Avis did a great job making their Lover's Knot blocks. Marta wants to incorporate some corals with her teals, so this was a start in that direction.

Avis used her border fabric with yellow to make her pretty block.

It's fun to see these quilts start to become a reality!

I don't have a class tomorrow, so I plan to spend National Quilting Day finishing the string pieced quilt I've been working on. I just need to add a border or two and quilt it. Sounds simple enough, right? How are you celebrating quilting tomorrow?

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Another great Lone Star group!

Another group of quilters gathered to make the Lone Star quilt yesterday. What a gorgeous array of fabrics there were! Here they are working on their strips sets in preparation for making the first diamond. 
It's fun to see all of the unique color combos and styles of fabrics being used!

 Ahhh....they begin to come together. Rochelle had to leave early, but got one of her diamonds sewn together....only seven left!
 Cheri's gold is going to be the full circle around the center of the star.

 Can't beat batiks for a rich design. It was fun to see one diamond finished, but you could really see their designs coming to life with the second one.

 Dianne wanted a rainbow effect.
Seems like Dianne might be thinking, "what? another picture?"

 Betty chose all blues from her stash. I think it will be interesting to see what happens when she gets it all put together because I think the monochromatic color scheme will shine.
I loved Pat's choices of teals and browns, especially some of the designs in her batiks. I was excited to see that she had those zigzag patterns that seem to be radiating to the pointed edge of her diamond. 
We are meeting again on March 28 to continue working on them. I taught them the way I set in squares and triangles and if they want more help with them, we can do it that day. Or just continue working, whichever they need to do. 

Now that both classes are over, I can finish my working model....I got excited about it all over again yesterday when I was using it during class. Not sure when I will have time to work on it as I have several other things to do first, but it will be finished eventually. 
My working model
I am going to work on my string piecing project today....maybe I can get it almost finished?

Friday, March 13, 2015

More Scattered Thoughts

Jane's Scattered Thoughts
 Jane brought her version of Scattered Thoughts to the Highlights Sampler Club the other is stunning. Her rich batiks really  brought this pattern to life! She found a large print that she has never been able to cut up (smile) and pieced this pretty backing for it.  You can't see it in the pictures, but she made a label for it too. We are all trying to get better at making those labels!
 Not too many pictures from class, but these quilts are coming along. Marilyn got her border sashings made over the past month, so was able to see the beginnings of the over all design show up.
Marilyn's Highlights Sampler
 They worked on the Eccentric Star, which is the alternate block and have to make eight of them.
Jane's Highlights Samplers
 Jane is making two quilts, one with a yellow background and the other with the green. Her grandson chose the fabrics as one of them will be his.
 I'm not sure why I didn't get pictures of the other quilter's blocks...sometimes I wait until closer to the end to see what they get finished and then in all the flurry of wrapping things up, I forget. sigh....

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Love those finishes!

 While I was at Cut Up and Quilt on Saturday, Barb stopped in with three quilt finishes to show me. I was excited to see that she had finished her Lone Star quilt...she took the class in January.
Fly Away Home Sampler
 She also brought two finished samplers she has made during my classes over the past couple of years. They are beauties...these pix don't do them justice. We should've gone outside!
StarLuna Sampler
I didn't have school on Monday, so spent most of the day working on a new string piecing project. I love string piecing for lots of reasons, but the biggest one is that it's just fun!

 Monday and Tuesday nights were both Sampler Club nights (pictures coming) and I'm looking forward to meeting with my quilt group tonight and see what they have been up to.