March 3rd, 2014
Finally, I’m inspired to start a new quilt for myself.
I’d been reflecting on my favorite Gramma-Great quilt: the pink and white Carpenter’s Wheel block. All those diamonds are so enticing! However, I’m not ready to attempt Y-seams just yet. As luck would have it, my colleague pointed me to the magic-8 method for making half-square triangles and from there I searched how to assemble the block using these triangles instead of diamonds.
Last year, I purchased fabric without any intended project. I’d stumbled upon a delicate birdie print that I used for the wheel plus two coordinating solids.
The real magic happened when I cut squares for those magic-8’s. The birdie was centered perfectly on one square and I decided to use it as the focus in the center of the star instead of triangles.
For the background, I used both orchid & wisteria solid fabric, though I’m not certain I like the X the small squares form.
As long as I’m diligent about measuring 3” squares, everything comes together nicely. My first block is a pleasing, subtle wash of my favorite color.
February 10th, 2014
Spent the weekend making up the orders I’ve received for Valentines.
Here are the multi-color Candy Hearts. So fun and brightly colored!
And 2 simple Ribbon Designs and the Flourish in purple.
Plus, a MK mini Heart Frame for $13!
Contact me for cards today!
February 3rd, 2014
Ok, so it’s not exactly the color of the year (see here), but I’ve designed (and sell while supplies last) these fabulous cards that I must share with you. Here they are in Gold & Silver:I love simple designs & will have some Valentines to post later this week.
December 25th, 2013
What better project to post on Christmas Day than a fabulous reversible stocking that I figured out how to make from various posts on Pinterest.
My BAM Secret Santa project turned out great! Here are the fronts:
The trick is to sew the two fronts together at the top with a loop for hanging.
Then cut a backing fabric shape and sew wrong sides together, leaving a 2-inch opening to turn the right sides out. It’s amazingly simple. Happy Merry!
December 14th, 2013
And one to go!
Select fabric for the Secret Santa gift (holiday stocking)? Check! Design an alternating block pattern of reindeer fabric? Check! Fussy-cut star strips for aforementioned blocks? Check! Engine trouble? Check!
Scotty: Captain, I don’t know how much more emergency power we can take before we start to break up.
You guessed it; my machine started dropping stitches while I was working on projects for my 24-hour deadline yesterday. Then, with only 2 seams left to fight for on my BAMalot block, my Husqi decided it had had quite enough of my forward momentum and locked in reverse!
I still had the stocking to finish, so I checked my alternate machine and found it stuck on zigzag. Seriously? Both machines needing repair meant there was nothing I could do except hope to figure out ‘plan C’ and complete everything in the few hours I had in the morning. Sigh!
Thankfully, bright and early the next morning, my neighbor kindly came to my aid with her new Singer.
Within the hour, I had finished adding the last teal & orange border for my BAMalot block. Previously, I’d mirrored the last frame design and set it top & bottom opposite the 4-patch from the last addition. It’s a nice bit to blur the lines. Put a pop of hot pink in the corners and called it done.
Ah, yes! Back to the stocking…
(NOTE: MY addition to this funky block is JUST the extended inner colors on top & bottom, plus the blue double border with hot pink corner. I would have loved to keep this one!)
October 31st, 2013
While I knew that my great grandmother was an avid quilter, I hadn’t seen her handiwork in many years. On a recent visit with my mother, she pulled out several quilts that I easily remembered from childhood. Here’s one that was on my parents bed.
It’s called Carpenter’s Wheel. This seems to be a favorite block design. Using two colors make a flat block, but with the large ‘corner’ triangles around each block, the background seems to change. This quilt is especially amazing because it’s hand pieced & hand quilted. We have several more in various fabric combos and it’s interesting to note differences.
This quilt showcases the 3D use of a multi-fabric layout. It’s easier to see the cubes that make up the center star. And those ‘corner’ triangles frame each block nicely.
A third version focuses on the star without the diamond wheel and features the square and one diamond in the same color. A long six-pointed star emerges between the main blocks. The star seems more like a minty pinwheel.
There is more than meets the eye with this block design!
October 8th, 2013
This month’s installment of BAM-alot Blocks found me hunting up the longest pieces of solid fabric for creating borders. I didn’t have any of the new fabric additions, so I thought I’d use the original purples and gray prints. Perhaps I could echo the pie slices in the corners and use colorful squares-on-point along the edges. I also toyed with triangles.
But for some reason, that hypnotizing circle fabric was too overwhelming. Maybe a good solid could contain its energizing powers. The purple seemed dull, but there were two possible reds, one burgundy and one hot pink. Guess which one I liked?
Just an inch around gave my eye a place to rest. I had visions of polka-dot orange & purple Prairie Points, but I restrained myself and even ditched the orange. Good idea, though so I speed-pieced a few trios of triangles. If I put too many around, it would negate the ‘calming effect’ of a solid. Hey, pink is a neutral, right?
Anyway, here it is! And I did make one special purple Prairie Point.
(NOTE: MY addition to this block is just the outside hot pink border with colorful triangles & one special Prairie Point.)
September 30th, 2013
Every once in a while, I am intrigued by a Quilty speaker and take the workshop at the last minute.
That’s what happened this month. I fell in love with a batik fabric pack, bought some curvy templates and took Judy Sisneros’ Circle Pizzazz workshop.
What a treat to learn curved piecing at the foot of a master. With fabulous tips and tricks she led us by the hand until we each had created a block. Her technique (make the first ring block, then cut it up and assemble the second block) reminded me of a color class I took in college where the professor had us make 2 simple watercolors in contrasting colors, and then told us to cut them up and weave them together. Scary! But it worked so beautifully. This pretty one is mine:
The real joy is seeing dozens of them laid out together. Here are blocks from 21 of us, completed during the workshop. They really seem to go well together like a scrap quilt.
September 24th, 2013
For this Marin Autumn Retreat, I took another weekend trip to Tie-Land.
Working with the last blue shirt and two-dozen ties, I used the ‘string block’ method to make a four blocks for the pillow top and plan four solid blocks out of wool trousers for the backside.
My goal is to complete 8 pillows, so I’ll need to cut the last 23 ties very judiciously to make this work.
Here is my first one:
By Sunday, I have pieced the first 4 tops. Did I mention that silk ties are very challenging to work with? It’s a good start and I’ll need a bit more focused time to make this happen by December.
August 31st, 2013
With the long weekend, I’m contemplating my addition options for the round robin block. It’s déjà vu because my friend & I split a long strip-pieced fabric swatch for our starter blocks. I’m working on hers with a couple months of borders. Here’s my chosen color palette.
I’m looking forward to reintroducing purple. My other quandary is how to work with the trapezoid shape. I could square it up & turn it on point. I do like it much better with less green, but I’m not ready to cut it yet.
An idea to insert a royal purple turns out to be more labor intensive than I planned. Chickie keeps an eye on the time as I applique my framework.
Unfortunately, I’ve left no time to set it on point. Maybe someone else will.
(NOTE: Thus, MY addition to this block is just the appliquéd purple frame.)