March 31, 2016

Red, White, and Blue Scrappy Trip

If you've been following me on Instagram you know that I'm a little crazy about the Scrappy Trip pattern (tutorial found here). Some people don't like the unpicking involved in that method, but I think it's fun, because you never really know how each block is going to turn out! Here is the first Scrappy Trip I made, following the original pattern. I finished it about a year ago, and it has been on many trips with us, as you can see!

I used probably 14 different lines for this quilt- basically anything red, navy, and aqua that I had. It has a lot of Bonnie and Camille, some Tasha Noel, a few basics, some Lori Holt, and a couple of scraps I can't even identify.

 I backed it with a Lecien Flower Sugar I got from Whimsy Quilts and Fabrics, and did a scrappy binding of white Swiss Dots from Riley Blake in red, aqua, and navy. It was quilted with Baptist Fans by Hollie Rawe.

When I was making this quilt my oldest son was barely 4, and he would say, "when this quilt is ready we can have a picnic for America!!"

March 29, 2016

Electric Quilt 7

Sometimes when I don't have the energy to set up sewing camp at my kitchen table, I pretend to make quilts on Electric Quilt 7. It's approximately 159 times faster than making a real quilt :) My favorite button recently is "Symmetry"- it can flip all the blocks with one click, giving you so many different layout options. For example, if you start with something like this...

 ...and then click "Symmetry", you get something totally different and fun. And then again, and again, and again!


Which one is your favorite? Which one should I make?? I've just barely started sewing curves thanks to Suzy Quilts' video. I'm super excited to make a quilt with curves, I just need to pick one!

March 22, 2016

Sampler Quilt

 About a month ago something called the Splendid Sampler quilt along began. Twice a week, two new block patterns are published on their blog, all created by different designers. By the end of the year there will be 100 blocks and those who participated will have a beautiful sampler quilt. I love the sense of community that this has created, there are tens of thousands of participants! I also love how the blocks are designed to teach new methods- piecing, applique, embroidery, and more.

When this first bonus block was announced right before Valentine's Day, I made it immediately. I think I must have been the first one, I was so excited. In fact I was so thrilled with the cute little block, that I couldn't wait for more patterns to come out! I started making 6 inch blocks from other patterns, and I just couldn't stop. Most of them sew up quickly because they are so tiny. And, it's just fun to "sample" quilt patterns that I've always wanted to try, but don't have time to make the entire quilt. (I wish there were about 5 more hours in each day to quilt!) It is a very addicting little project.

Needless to say, I have strayed very far from what the true Splendid Sampler quilt will be. In fact, I'd say mine is only about 10% Splendid Sampler blocks at this point. I'm going to continue to use the ones that I love, and add others, and maybe stop at 100? Who knows!

Here is a list of resources I've used for the block patterns:
  • C and T Publishing's phone app "Quick and Easy Quilt Block Tool". This app has a lot of good blocks, all with different size options. I don't follow their cutting instructions always, but it's helpful with the overall idea. 
  • Lori Holt's book "Farm Girl Vintage". She has some super cute blocks, also with different size options.
  • When I see photos of blocks that I like, I take a screen shot and save them in a "Sampler" file on my phone. Later, I transfer them to my quilting notebook, where I figure out the math and cutting instructions. Once you've done a few of these, you catch on quickly as to what sizes you'll need. It's a great exercise in quilt math!
  • I've also just diminished the size on favorite blocks from Camille Roskelley's patterns, particularly in her book "Simply Retro". 
  • Several of the blocks I made up myself. It's fun to play around with leftover pieces and see what I can come up with.

Even though I'm not using every block from The Splendid Sampler, I still get so excited twice a week when I get the free pattern email. I can't wait to see what great blocks are still to come, and in the mean time I'm having a blast adding my own!

March 18, 2016

Another Scrappy Trip!

I made my first Scrappy Trip (pattern found here) last summer in red, aqua, and navy. It is one of my very favorite quilts and is the designated drive-in movie quilt at our house! I will post about that one another day. For now I wanted to answer some questions about my second Scrappy Trip, which is still in progress.

I'm making this one for my sister, who loves navy and pink. I'm aiming to make a quilt for each of my 5 sisters this year, though some of them are being very indecisive about it, so I might not make my self-imposed deadline :)

I wanted to maximize my Gooseberry Jelly Roll (by Lella Boutique), and doing 12" blocks as the original pattern directs leaves quite a bit of jelly strip left over. So, I cut all the strips in half (approx. 21") and used 4 prints and 4 whites for each block, which gives you a 16" finished block. With one jelly roll and 3 yds of background yardage, you can get a 4 by 5 block quilt, which comes to 64" by 80", a very decent throw size, or it could squeak by as a twin.

I think I actually like the 8 by 8 blocks better than the originals, as it makes the pattern slightly less busy. I hope that answers most questions about this quilt! It is one of my very favorites and I can't wait to gift it.

Lonestar Quilt

I had the great honor of giving this old family quilt top a makeover. It was made either by my great grandmother, or my great aunt, we aren't sure. The top was too big and wavy for me to quilt so we sent it to longarm by my friend Hollie Rawe. Inevitably there were some puckers since the top really needed surgery, but the goal was for the quilt to be usable, and I'm not qualified for quilt surgery yet!

 I backed it in Regent Street Lawn's Floral English Garden in Ivory, hoping a lighter weight fabric would put less stress on the delicate quilt top. The result is so silky and light, I love it!

The binding is Kona Crocus, which didn't match exactly with the original purples, but I like how it brightened things up a bit and I love a stark contrast binding.

The quilt belongs to my aunt, and I hope it brings many years of snuggling. It's pretty amazing to think about the hands that pieced this beautiful top many years ago, and the time and thought put into it by one of my ancestors. I loved being able to make it something that is now useful and beautiful, instead of something in a box!

March 17, 2016

Primrose Path Quilt

Last fall I purchased a Hello Darling layer cake on a great sale (check out Lou Lou's Fabric Shop, her daily deals are amazing!) and couldn't find a layer cake pattern to use that I was really crazy about. So, I started doodling around on graph paper, exploring the different ways one could chop up and arrange 10" squares. I came up with the following pattern, which I named "Primrose Path", a name I thought was terribly clever considering primroses have 4 petals, the Irish Chain element created a "path", and it was an allusion to my quilting mania/addiction. 

After I'd sewn it up and posted it on Instagram, several people expressed interest in the pattern. I began looking into writing a pattern for it. Luckily, before I got too far, a kind soul informed me that this very pattern already existed over at Missouri Star Quilt Co. (You can find it here.) They have wonderful patterns and tutorials, a few of which I have used, but somehow I had never noticed this particular quilt among them. So that was that! Even though it didn't come to much, I still consider this my first pattern :)

I backed it with the gingham duvet cover from the bed in my teenage room growing up. Considering its size and girliness, it didn't have much of a future in this boy house, so I'm happy it found a useful home on the back of this quilt. Whenever I snuggle this one the backing reminds me of happy times growing up with 5 sisters. It's definitely the girliest quilt in this house!