Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Ombré Star Table Runner tutorial

Today, I'm over on the Havel's Sewing blog to share a new tutorial with you! Fourth of July is just around the corner, and my table was in need of some jazzing up. Just a few hours later, the Ombré Star Table Runner was born!
Click on over for all of the details on mine and how to make your own. Hope you like it!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

June do.Good Stitches blocks

For the June block for the Emerge Circle of do.Good Stitches, Allison took pity on our busy summer schedules and asked for a super simple block. So simple, in fact, that I managed to finish it on June 1, the very first day of the month. That never happens!
All she wanted was an off-center plus block made of 5" squares, with the plus in black and dark gray prints and the background in low-volume prints, plus a strip of four more low-volume squares. Done and done!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

QuiltCon 2017

Yes, yes, yes, QuiltCon was back in February, but I was sad that I'd never written a post about my lovely experience, and I wanted to make sure it got documented one way or another. This year's QuiltCon was in Savannah, which made for an exciting destination on top of the quilting fun. I spent my first afternoon wandering around downtown, taking in the beautiful architecture and enjoying some delicious sweet tea.
Fun hoop wall in the hallway outside one of the local fabric stores
Our hotel was on the opposite side of the channel from downtown, so we had to take a ferry back and forth. But just look at that view. The weather was absolutely gorgeous while we were there.
That night, I started off easy with an embroidery workshop with Alison Glass. She's just as lovely and laid back as you'd imagine, and it was a relaxing evening of hand sewing (and learning). We worked on a fun needlebook design, which I desperately need to get back to.
The next day started the first of two full days of classes with Carolyn Friedlander (I know, I'm a super fan). The first day was on precision paper piecing, basically an advanced paper piecing class that focused on how to fussy cut fabrics, make the most of really small pieces, and work with directional prints.
My finished blocks (another project I'd really like to get back to)
Carolyn's fun sample
The second day was a machine quilting class. I love Carolyn's style of quilting and was really jazzed to get some of her insight into how she plans out her quilting, as well as the nitty gritty of actually doing it. It had been quite a while since I'd done free-motion quilting, and I needed a kick in the butt (and a boost of confidence) to give it another shot. This class was just the ticket.
When I wasn't in class, I spent most of my time perusing the trade floor and quilt show. There were so many beautiful quilts on display this year, but I'll try to focus in on some of my favorites.
"Bling" by Katherine Jones (@twocatsquilts), the "best in show" winner, was insanely awesome. The pictures simply don't do it justice.
 It was fun to see the STLMQG's charity quilt hanging, too. Our guild put a lot of work into this baby.
 "Out of the Fog" by Rebecca Cronk (@rebeccacronk71)
 "Reflective Windows" by Rebecca Severt (@creativeblockquilts)
 (all labels clockwise from top left)
Bazaar Quilt by Tara Faughnan (@tarafaughnan)
Scattered by Jess Frost (@elvengardenquilts)
Window No. 1 by Melanie Tuazon (@melintheattic)
Drawn by Angela Walters (@angelafmq)
(Seriously, the quilting on those bottom two was so amazing in person.)
 Autumn is Wistful by Chawne Kimber (@cauchycomplete)
Warp and Weft by Cheryl Brickey (@meadowmistdesigns)
Octagon Shimmer Studio Stash by Jennifer Sampou (@jennifersampou)
Infused Plaid by Cassandra Beaver (@cassandra.beaver)
Cursive by Paige Alexander (@quiltedblooms)
Crossways by Karin Jordan (@karinjordanstudio)
For the Watchers and Dreamers by Kristin Shields (@kristinshields)
Inside Out by Sue Bleiweiss (@suebleiweiss)
 Land and Sea by Andrea Tsang Jackson (@3rdstoryworkshop) (really loved this one; her fabric choices were so money and better appreciated in person)
Pete and Repeat by Amy Struckmeyer (@formwork)
Still With Her by Liz Harvatine (@ladyharvatine)
Prism Waves I by Stefanie Satterwhite (@satterwhitequilts)
Made in GDR 26 by Emily Doane (@missemilytaylor)
Go North by Maritza Soto (@sotosewn)
Modern Stripes by Felicity Ronaghan (@felicityquilts)
Westshire by Julia Williams (@alchemytea)
I even gotten to spend a little time on my last morning doing some embroidery in the Cotton + Steel booth with Alexia Abegg herself. Yes, I'd say it was a lovely few days. Nashville 2019, I'm comin' at ya.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Botanics quilt: A finish!

Today, I'm so excited to finally be posting about one of my favorite makes ever. Back in May, I finished up my Botanics quilt, one of my largest scale applique projects.
This quilt was destined for two dear friends who recently got married, and while I was so happy to be able to give it to them, I must admit it was really hard to let this one go.
As you may recall, this quilt started back in February with a lovely stack of soft blue and green prints, mostly from Carolyn Friedlander's various lines, with a little Cotton + Steel, Pond by Elizabeth Hartman, and Essex yarn-dyed linen throw in. I love these soft, soothing colors, just perfect for spring (and our friends' home decor).
I chose the fabrics for each section as I went, without a real plan. I just did a section and then auditioned from my stack until I found the right print for the next part. This was my first time appliquing with the Essex, and it turned out to be a real pleasure -- soft and pliable and oh so easy to work with.
I knew from the start that I wanted to do some hand quilting on this project (my first time!), so I took a tip from Carolyn and decided to try wool batting for the first time as well. She uses it in most of her quilts, and I just love the softness and loft it provides. Plus, it can be stitched more widely than cotton, which was the look I wanted to go for. For the back, I used one of the Friedlander lawn prints, which really sent the softness factor over the edge.
I ended up quilting in a randomly spaced grid pattern. I set the pattern first with a light blue 50 wt. thread on my machine, then filled in spaces with some big-stitch hand quilting using a teal no. 8 Perle cotton and a 12 wt. light blue Sulky thread. The hand quilting was such fun, and I can't wait to do it again. This quilt has me itching to finally finish up my Collection quilt!
I finished off the quilt with a mint green crosshatch that I love for the binding (the same one I used for the background in my Tall Tales quilt -- how different it looks here, paired with a different color scheme). Many nights went into this quilt, and I'm so very pleased with the results.
Botanics pattern by Carolyn Friedlander. The quilt measures approximately 55" x 65".