You are currently browsing the monthly archive for June 2011.

I’ve been working on my spiderweb quilt for a while.  I’ve always wanted to make one of them, and happily jumped in when someone in my small quilting group wanted to do it as a group.

I started, and was so excited by how it was going together that I quickly finished the top.  It had to wait its turn to be quilted, and I was happily quilting away.

I took some time to figure out how I wanted to quilt it.  There are lots of seams, and I didn’t want to stipple quilt it.  So I did what I often do – browsed Flickr for inspiration.  I saw lots of tops, but not a lot of quilts in my search.  But I found one – a red and white pillow – that I loved the quilting on.  Using that as my inspiration, off I went.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I was lucky enough to win a GO! last fall and haven’t looked back.  I’ve whipped out tumblers with the greatest of ease, cut and subcut strips to make rectangles in lots of different sizes, and just enjoyed myself – and it – immensely.

If you would like to win your own, there are a few giveaways going on right now –

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Good luck!

I posted a few days ago that I was planning on making some Quilts of Valor blocks for Sew Cal Gal’s QOV challenge (as I can’t tie up my sewing machine doing my quilting while trying to shepherd DD through quilting her first big quilt ever).

I wanted to use my GO! to make flying geese units.  I have the 4 7/8″ triangle as well as the 3″ finished triangle, so it should have been easy.

And it was…only I discovered that the 4 7/8″ triangle die also makes a great 6″ (finished) hourglass block!  It was so quick and easy to cut the pieces out.  The die is arranged so that you can take a strip of fabric, fold it in 4ths (across the WOF) and get 8 triangles (with the straight of grain along the long side).

So in just a couple of minutes I’d cut out enough triangles for 4 12″ blocks.  No fiddling or funky measurements.  When sewing, no lining up tips, or marking sewing lines.  Great fun!

To go back to my original flying geese concept, I’ve got to tell you about my favorite way to make them in any size I need – it’s the no-waste method.  It’s from the patch pieces website, and has been around forever.  Fill in the blanks based on the size you need, trust that it works, and get sewing!  I have to add the trust part…because when you’re at the step where there’s a big half square triangle with two little half square triangles hanging off it, it’s hard to see the geese coming…but they will…

Now it’s time to pack it up and head off to the post office – blocks don’t have to be mailed until the 20th, but I’m heading in that direction anyways…

Deb

Finished!  Fini!

To recap – for two years, at various quilt shows around the area, I kept looking at the Soda Pop by A Quilter’s Dream.  I finally bit the bullet and bought it in January.  Her sample is made of neutral batiks – a bali pop (in her case) or jelly roll.  As I was staring at my stash I ended up deciding to make the quilt out of light blues and greens.

The colors remind me of vintage Coke bottles – that blue green reminds me of summers when I was a kid – sometimes my sister and I would get to split a Coke in the evenings.  The original quilt was browns and tans – maybe she was inspired by the cola itself?

This is the quilt I should have cut with my GO! but didn’t.  I was working with random bits of fabric from my stash and decided it would be easier to cut them out singly with my rotary cutter.  WRONG!  Ok, for some of the the rotary cutter would have been better, but I ended up cutting enough strips out that it would have made most of the pieces easier.  The whole quilt is made out of 1.5″ squares, 2.5″ squares, and 2.5×4.5″ rectangles…I could have easily cut and subcut with dies I already own.  Lesson learned.

I quilted it with straight lines – not something I usually do, but decided to do this time around.

I think this one’s destined for the guild’s quilt auction in November.  (Pause for a bit of self-criticism here)  I tend to like more value contrast than this quilt has.  I thought I was stretching myself by working in a tighter value constraint that I usually do.   I added some darker fabrics – both in blues and greens as well as some darker blue- and green-grays in order to find some depth.  They’re there, and scattered around, so they’re not doing as much as I’d hoped. In addition, I’m seeing some not-quite-straight lines – little bumps in the straight lines where they intersect, even with use of my Pfaff’s IDT system.  I’m hoping that when I wash it they won’t be as obvious.

On to the next quilt!!!  I have a spiderweb (made of the SAME fabrics, but adding a deep blue for the stars) that I absolutely love pinned and waiting.  Unfortunately, I think it’ll languish for a bit.

Darling daughter is ready to quilt her first BIG quilt ever (at 36×49, it’s much bigger than the doll quilts she’s got under her belt) and we spent some time this morning trying to figure out what kind of quilting she can do on it.  Stipple needs work, stencils are a bit better, and she doesn’t want straight lines.  We’ll figure it out…

While DD and I trial-and-error her quilting styles, I think I’ll work on SewCalGal’s QOV charity challenge – ship date’s coming up!!

Deb

I have a theory.  When it comes to school projects, the kid does the work.  I am there to help – at times, to provide inspiration, to embellish or pare down a project, to teach the skills needed.  Not all parents seem to agree with me…at least not if the endangered animal diaramas just done by the 3rd graders are any indication.  I also believe that most school proejcts should be able to be made from items found around the house.  (As a crafty type with a crafty kid, believe me, we’re not going to run out of glue, popsicle sticks, or yarn any time this century.)

So when it came to an end-of-the-year thank you for her teacher and teacher’s helper, it was going to be something that she could make.

About a month ago, I saw the cutest mug rug.  (Of course, I can’t find the link anywhere!) It was quilted to resemble lined notebook paper, and had ‘thank you’ embroidered on it in red.  I showed it to DD8.85 at the time, and she liked it.

Last night, in just over an hour, we (she) knocked them out.  5″ square white fabric, 1″ strips (about 1.25 WOF strips needed for 2), 6″ square backing, batting, thread, and a fabric marker.  I cut the fabric and marked the lines for the notebook paper, she did the rest.  I decided to have her do ‘quilt-as-you-go’ because that way she could run the notebook paper lines off the end and not have to stop them at the seam.  We tried 3 pens – the gel pen was too hard for her, the fabric marker was way too thick.  Then she tried the “tee shirt pen” and it was just right.

One for her teacher, one for her teacher’s helper.  We rolled them up, tied with a ribbon, and she took them off to school this morning, where there were much loved.

You can’t see it, but those notebook lines are spot on.  The red borders are sewn nice and straight.  Way to go, kiddo!

Deb

It’s been a while since I updated on all of my projects.

I’m currently in project overload.  My mind is running faster than my sewing machine can keep up!  It’s a common problem, particularly when I have lots of (household) things to take care of.

I’ve been shepherding DD(8.85) through her first big quilt.  (At DD’s swim lessons they have her age on the schedule…they currently have her at 8.85 years old – and it’s hard to be more specific than a kid when it comes to age!)  She’s on a bit of a deadline – first of all,  because I refuse to let this turn into another kid-sized UFO.  Second, because I (yup, it’s all me) want her to be able to take it to school later this week and show it off to her teacher’s assistant – a quilter.  Third, because she just got it accepted into the local big fall show.  She’s making good progress – 12 seams until the top’s done!  She’s making the Quilt in a Day (Eleanor Burns) Cinnamon Swirl pattern using Moda’s Birdie line of fabric (Me and My Sisters, I think).

Supervising takes a lot of time!  She’s got decent accuracy with her 1/4 inch seam, and is both careful and confident around my sewing machine, but it seems that half the time when I leave to to finish off a set something goes wrong.

So, my projects!

First, I’m almost done with the binding on my Soda Pop Quilt.  I’ve got about 18 inches left!!!  Then I think I’m going to wash it.  This is the woulda-coulda-shoulda cut it out with my AccuQuitl GO instead of my rotary cutter!

After that, I need to bind my Charming Charm Squares quilt.  (tutorial here)  I love this pattern!  So simple to put together, and can easily be put together using charm squares or stash, and the whole thing can be cut on my GO!  This one is made from a 5″ square pack I picked up somewhere, with pure white sashing.  Just for fun, a polka dot binding!

While I’m binding, I need to baste.  My poor Spiderweb quilt has been languishing on the pinning table since last week!  After pinning the last two, my poor fingers needed a break.  But now I need to do it before the callus starts to disappear!

What’s next?  A labor of love.  A few weeks ago I finished embroidering 6 designs onto minkee squares.  (Note – this was a pain!  I don’t recommend it!)  They’re now trimmed and ready to be set into the twin-sized minkee quilt I’m making for DD8.85.  Minkee = stretchy, slippery, and fuzzy = pain in the neck.  But, as I said, a labor of love.  This will take some willpower to get done, since my quilting inspriation is leading me in a dozen different directions right now.

So – next up:

(1)  Quilting the Spiderweb.  I’ve been all over flickr and have found great inspiration!

(2)  Prodding DD8.85 (grin!) to her first finish.  I fully expect to lose my sewing machine for a week for her to quilt.

(3)  Minkee quilt.  I can’t tell you how much I don’t want to do this, but I promised, and it’s been almost a year.  Does anyone have any ideas on what a good batting would be?  Or what the right yarn/floss/whatever is to tie it?  For that matter, what’s the right way to tie? 

That’s probably going to take me the rest of the month to get through.  By then, I could either be completely un-inspired, or inspired by the same things, or have a completely new inspiration list.  Who knows?

Who?  Who? Whoo?  Hoot?  I almost forgot!  I won something!  I so rarely win that it makes my week!   I won a giveaway for 3 patterns at Chatterbox Quilts – and I picked an owl stuffie pattern, an owl applique pattern, and a swan pattern.  I can’t wait to make one of them!

Phew!  But if I update more frequently, the posts will be shorter – right?

Deb

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About Aspen Hill

Welcome to Aspen Hill! I'm Deb. Quilter, lover of fabric. Fan of completed projects. Quilt Pattern Designer. My blog is my space where I get to share quilting, sewing, and other creative pursuits. Come back often!

You can find my quilts, doll clothes, and patterns on Etsy.