Seven Charmed Years

Looking back on my quilt blogging I realized it has been seven years since I first started posting with Angela for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. These have been wonderful times of making quilting friends all around the world.

I noticed that my quilt photo record, although not complete, contains a significant number of charm quilts. This is the result of lots of online fabric shopping, especially of pre-cuts in the beginning. In fact, almost all of my projects have involved the use of standard pre-cut measurements, partly because I don’t do any hand stitching such as hexies.

Here are several of my charm quilts in no particular order.

A staggered example and one using a bright charm pack and solids.

A set of boxed blocks with great 3-D effects and a row quilt of HST four patches.

A Project Linus quilt and a disappearing nine patch made for a dear friend.

Another row quilt with cars and trucks and a set of framed charms.

A winter quilt and a sports one, both for Project Linus.

Finally another row quilt, which I really enjoy because they don’t involve matching seams, plus a sample of my favorite little houses made from charms, plus strips with flip triangles for the roofs.

These bring back many good quilt memories and sharing them with all of you dear friends. I hope each of you has a healthy and happy New Year and I’ll be joining the Rainbow Scrap Challenge again.

I’m linking up with Angela at http://superscrappy.blogspot.com/and Cynthia at http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/

Gift Giving

It’s the time of year for giving gifts and sharing with others. My husband grew up in a family who believed that love was shown by giving gifts, so he loved going all out with presents for our children. He would look at Santa’s bag and say, “We need another one for Beth because Chris has more than she does.”

I was too practical and would let him know what I preferred, such as a plant versus a bouquet of blossoms which did not last. He often would complain that he could not surprise me. Yet one of his gifts which delighted me was a large spray bottle of Chanel No. 5 perfume, totally extravagant.

So this year I am giving a special gift to my granddaughter, but otherwise small gifts for each family member. In checking out my Christmas fabrics, I found a number of fat eighths, just the size for small bags. I stitched them up in no time.

Aren’t they cute? Of course they also were a way to use more of my stash. By the way, I still have not purchased any fabric this year. I do need to buy some upholstery fabric for a project, but will wait until the New Year.

Of course, the greatest gift of all was the Father giving us His Son, Jesus. That is the true meaning of Christmas.

May blessings, peace and joy be yours, dear friends, and may you have the chance to bless others.

I’m linking up with Angela at http://superscrappy.blogspot.com/and Cynthia at http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/

Waterfront Property

This quilt started out as two groups of totally unrelated blocks made just for the fun of it.

The houses came about by trying to make them as simply as possible out of pre-cuts. I had seen many versions online, but they all involved too many fiddly details like chimneys or windows. I had a large stash of charm squares and jelly roll strips., so this was the result of my experiment:

The other shortcut was the use of flip triangles for the roof. I also enjoyed searching in my stash for cute inhabitants or interesting textures for the walls. The result was a pretty good collection of houses, but no plan to use them.

The other fun blocks were the sailboats. Sailing was one of the best experiences of my younger years. My Norwegian uncle had sailed all his life and owned a succession of boats after retirement. We went sailing all around the waters of the Rhode Island coast with no sound but the ripples of water and the wind in the sails. It was both peaceful and exciting depending on the weather.

Several of you online friends were also making little boats at the same time. Sorry, I don’t recall your names, but I really enjoyed our sailing journey.

My boats are also easily made using 2-1/2 inch strips and flip triangle. I did not have any project in mind for these boats.

Finally I decided to use the houses and the boats for a strip quilt. The major problem was spacing them out to make WOF rows. Adding trees between the houses worked pretty well. The dividing strips became sky and grass or sea water.

Naturally, as with most of my quilts, it got put on the shelf and forgotten. These last few months I’ve been trying to get some UFOs finished. So today I pulled the top out and added the white border.

Here is the waterfront neighborhood ready to be layered and quilted. It will probably be a Project Linus donation, so I may decide to use a fleece backing and bind it in a contrasting color.

It’s really a good feeling to finish some projects before the New Year. I hope you all have the chance to do that in addition to all the holiday bustle.

I’m linking up with Angela at http://superscrappy.blogspot.com/and Cynthia at http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/

Flowers of Love

In November I received a lovely group of fabrics from Mari at The Academic Quilter.

I decided to make a quilt top using this group along with a group of pre-cut batiks from a fabric exchange at our local guild. I stitched them into strips.

The colors blend very nicely. I decided to use them in a row quilt top and send it to Kat and Cat Quilts: Covered in Love. This is run by Kat, a nurse at a Texas hospital. She and her friends will complete the quilt. It will then be given to a family of a dying patient, a comfort in their time of grief.

I’m happy with the finished top, which measures about 46 x 60 inches.

I know that Mari will be happy to see that her generous gift has been used to bless a family in need of comfort.

If any of you are interested in helping with this quilt ministry, please contact Kat to learn more about it.

I’m linking up with Angela at http://superscrappy.blogspot.com/and Cynthia at http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/

Quiltmate

I’ve been doing my quilting for the last seven years in my one-bedroom apartment. Along one wall of the bedroom are a bookshelf for supplies, my excellent Brother machine in a custom extended SewEZ table and a sturdy steel table for cutting and pressing.

The problem has been the ironing pad on the table, which slips around and has curled-up edges., very annoying.

So I was thrilled to learn about a new product from Lucy Brennan at Charm about You. It is the QuiltMate silicone-backed ironing pad, which sticks firmly to the table surface. It comes in three sizes, a small one for pressing blocks or touch-ups, the medium, which I ordered, and the large, not yet available.

I ordered the medium three days ago from QuiltMate.com and it arrived this morning. As you can see, it is smaller, but still works very well for pressing WOF strips and my flimsy in progress.

I may order the large mat when it becomes available. Meanwhile, I can recommend it for anyone who needs a stable pressing surface. Thank you, Lucy.

I am one very happy quilter today and hope you all have had a good Quilting week.

I’m linking up with Angela at http://superscrappy.blogspot.com/and Cynthia at http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/

Shades of Turquoise

I’ve been thinking about making a wallhanging for a Challenge involving texture. Furthermore, my personal goal is to see how much texture I can produce using only regular quilting cottons.

I’ve had a bundle of fat quarters sitting around for at least five years. There are at least twenty of them in shades of aqua/turquoise. Before they start to disintegrate, this will put them to good use.

I worked with them for hours, attempting to narrow them down to a graded group of less than ten. I used the grey scale choice on my photo editing in order to work it out. After a lot of changes, this is the result.

It’s definitely not perfect, with the jump from lights to darks, however this was a good exercise in grey scale awareness and the importance of contrast.

So these are my final seven choices, looking a lot better in color, even though I had to mix green and blue tones to do it. There is plenty of time to revise my choices.

Of course this is a long way from a textured piece. More about that as I progress.

I’m linking up with Angela at http://superscrappy.blogspot.com/and Cynthia at http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/

Broken

With winter approaching and holidays coming up, I’m feeling a little stressed about deadlines. Dealing with my UFOs was my priority, so I went through a pile of 8-inch blocks that I’ve been collecting. This is my favorite size for piecing because I don’t like to work too small.

Several of the blocks are from a Rainbow Scrap Challenge several years ago.. I like them and plan to make a wallhanging with these four.

I began adding framing for the blocks, using white jellyroll strips.

However, for some unknown reason the 1/4-inch foot suddenly went off course, jamming the needle so that it broke. With this post needing to be written, for my own sanity I wisely decided to call it a night.

Here is how far I got on adding the block borders.

What would you have done? I’m in no mood to attempt replacing the needle (I have a plentiful supply on hand). I would much rather cry on your sympathetic shoulders, dear friends.

I’m linking up with Angela at http://superscrappy.blogspot.com/and Cynthia at http://quiltingismorefunthanhousework.blogspot.com/