Saturday, April 25, 2015

Following Along with Leah Day

     As most of you know I enrolled in a Leah Day Free Motion Quilting video Craftsy video.   The sad thing is I enrolled in did not start really watching it for almost 10 months.  Big mistake.   I have learned so much watching the video!

     I have the same machine as she does in the video.  It has made it so easy to make the adjustments that she has on the machine and problem solve.  

     It may not be the most popular way to practice, but as I watch the video I use each new design on a full quilt,  not on practice pieces.  This allows me to repeat the design enough to become proficient in it.  

     In my newest quilt, Cherry Blossom Boxes, I used 3 designs off the video.

     The first block is a circular flower. I did this in each block of the quilt.  I drew the flowers out with a Frixion pen ahead of time. I had to use multiple pens show up on the different colors in the blocks.   

     The flower starts with a circular center that I turned into a swirl.  It then goes to petals that overlap. The flowers are not perfect and each is a little different.  Once I got the rhythm of each flower they went along easier! 24 flowers later I think it looks good!! 

     Between each flower is a chain of pearls. This consisted of a wrist workout! You made a circle that touched the outer edges of each row then swirled into a new circle.  Each circle started from the opposite direction.  After getting the rhythm of the circles this quilting went along pretty quickly.  I did the chain of pearls in all the sashing. 

     The last quilting I did on the quilt was on the outside border.  It is called Ricer Path.  It is my least favorite part of the Quilting in the quilt.  From the video I now understand about how you have less control on the outside edges.  I also feel that if I had gone smaller with the first row(center in river) it might have been an easier task. 

     I have now decided that I am going to finish the video and then start it over again.  I feel that if I do that I will be more proficient and the patterns I quilted.  Each section of the video gives you new tips that you can put in your practice.  I would like to see how much I have improved in the end! 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Cherry Blossom Boxes

     A while back, one of my favorite coworkers said she wanted a quilt with cherry blossoms on it.  After a couple of wonderful nights at work with her I went into my stash knowing I had cherry blossoms somewhere.  And I found the perfect fabric!!  But I only had a yard of Kona Bay blossoms. 

    I started looking at fabrics to match, not knowing what I was going to make.  I found 2 others in my stash and knew if I wanted to make a decent size quilt,  I would need more. 

    Of course my next step was Five-eighth Seams in West Ashley.  Where I picked out 2 more cordinating fabrics a and a background.  I decided I was going to use this quilt as my Pantone challenge quilt and uses Marsala that was in the cherry blossoms.

   Again, going the opposite direction then normal, I had to pick a quilt pattern. I sent my friend Shelia about 10 quilts I found on Pinterest.  And of course she picked this one.  

     I spent what seems like forever cutting strips and pieces. I decided to make the quilt with 5 rows across and 6 down. 

      When I went to sewing the pattern, it appeared to be quite easy.  Only to find out the pattern was wrong.  The creator forgot to subtract in her pieces for the seam allowances.  So inches of fabric had to be cut off and waisted.

     Once I figured out the pattern I chain pieced the remainder and the sewing went pretty quickly. 

     I then laid the blocks out facing the same direction.  I put 3 inch sashing around the blocks. I rotated the direction of every other row before sewing the rows together. I finished the quilt with an outer boarder of 5 inches. 

     I backed the quilt with some fabric with Marsala colored hearts. It's from In the beginning fabric.  

     To quilt it I did big flowers in each block and chains of pearls in the sashing.  In the outside I did a river pattern.  I learned all 3 off the Leah Day video I will show you soon. 

     To bind it I alternated 2 colored and a printed fabric strip.  

     I hope Shelia loves it as much as I love her!!  I photographed it at the canal bridge in St Stephen, SC.  I have another quilt top I was stitching for this challenge.   To bad I am a few stitches to short. 

Finished dimensions are 75 x 89

Monday, April 13, 2015

Pat Sloan's String Bean Challenge


  This Quilt started out as one not meant to be.  Pat Sloan's current challenge requires you to use some of her fabric.  I first ordered some online and  not long later received a refund.  It was out of stock.  The next week I was taking a trip to Charleston so I decided to go on a fabric hunt.

     In the Charleston SC area we are limited to just a few fabric stores.  My first stop was Stitch n' Sew, no luck.  After that I wondered over to Five Eighths seams and again.  No luck.  So last stop and way out of my way was People, Places and Quilts.  By far my favorite quilt store.  I almost walked out without any of Pats fabric.  Just by chance I look down on the clearance Wagon and what do I find??  I bought the last 4 yards of her fabric!!! I did leave a few fat quartes for the next desperate hunter!! 

    My next step was figuring out the fabrics.  My usual quilt designing is to figure out the pattern after I choose the fabric.  With this challenge I had to rotate my normal thinking.  I decided to goggle paint palettes and decided on this color way. 

     I went to my scrap basket and started cutting strips.  I started with 20 Fabrics but ended up with 22 after cutting pieces. 

     The sewing marathon was on!!  The String Bean blocks went together quickly.  I tried to chain piece them which worked out really well! I finished in 2 sittings!!  Makes me think about precutting all my pieces for other quilts!! 

     I decided to make this quilt 4 rows across and 4 down.  Pat in her challenge gave you the block but not a layout for the quilt. 

     I decided to add a border to the quilt. The only fabric I had enough of was Pat's.   I think she meant for her fabric to be highlighted so the Dots it was!  I made the border 4 1/2 inches wide.

     For the backing I used a piece of red and orange that was large enough. 

     I am still working my way threw Leah Days Free Motion Quiltinh Videos.  The next video was clamshells.  She said to start these on a straight edge.  I decided to go around the outside of my quilt with these.  I think I did pretty well!!  

     When I finished the outside I was just not feeling it.  So I watched the next video.  It was on pine needles.  I thought this might look good in the long strips. 

    I started out doing it like Leah said but as I made a few mistakes I felt they looked more like string bean leaves and the block name.  So of course that's how I finished the rest of the quilt, 

and the outside borders.  

     I could not decide on the binding.  I knew there was to much red in the quilt.  I needed to do pink or Aqua.  Just couldn't decide on which.  So my friend Teri chose the Aqua!!  

     So here's Pat Sloan's String Bean Quilt!!  I am going to give it to my Unckes wife who has recently started cancer treatment.  I hope it gives her comfort.