Sunday, June 29, 2014

Heart Quilt

Well, after my dad and husband dissed my rail fence quilt--"it isn't the best quilt you have ever made"-- I did some thinking and blog reading and thanks to Adrianne from On the Windy Side and Jolene of Blue Elephant Stitches, decided to do a heart instead. Thank goodness Jolene's design is done in squares instead of rows. I also used five inch squares because I wanted a larger heart and wasn't going for a pixelated look.

Here is the drawing I did before I started so I could see how big the quilt would be. In the drawing, you will see colored squares on the corners, but I decided they looked funky, so I eliminated them. I am only going to have one row of gray at the top and bottom and one to the side. I machine quilt on a good, but small-throated machine, so large quilts freak me out.

Here is the partial quilt on my design wall--a plastic tablecloth tacked to the wall - :-)--. I am beginning to wonder how in the world I am going to make points match, but that is an issue for sewing/glue basting. I will prevail somehow.

I have added a red square in the middle to represent love for the wedding quilt. I may make it a heart or add the names and dates of my friends. I don't have an embroidery machine, so the names will be SMALL, but I have a set to try it on first. I am surrounding it with Kona Ash fabric because grays, blues, and greens are favorite colors of the wedding couple. 

I have to say that I think I would like white better, but this quilt is not for me and the gray looks fine. How I am going to quilt this baby is another story all together. I will worry about that later. I sometimes really feel like Scarlett O'Hara in Gone with the Wind when I quilt--worrying about things tomorrow. I guess I could plan the quilt out, quilting design and all, but that is not as much fun as the "figure it out later" process. I do know I am NOT going to FMQ this quilt. I am still learning and I don't want to totally destroy the quilt.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

WIPs for the Slow Blogger Link-up

Knotted Cotton

So, I am linking to the Slow Blogger movement monthly doings from Weekend Doings, introduced to me by Knotted Cotton. Now, I love Martha's photos of her knitting. My photos are truly terrible in comparison, but I have four WIPs and one completed project to share.

First up, my attempt at free motion quilting from a class I took. The class was offered by the Hickory Hills Quilt Shop in Hot Springs, Arkansas. The class was great. I, however, will need a LOT more practice before I can even be considered an "acceptable" FM quilter. I don't have a stitch regulator, so I am trying to make consistently sized stitches as well as handle the FMQ. The center flower is an absolute mess (hence no closeup of it). Practice, practice, practice. That is what it takes.

Next, a bag that I really would like to make, but trying to make it made me realize why I avoided sewing for so many years. I cannot read the instructions. Quilt patterns are much, much easier to read and at least I can look at the finished quilt and sort of figure it out. The bag is currently a mess as I figure out how to finish the lining--the instructions are impossible!

Then we have a table runner from a quilter's meeting at Hickory Hill Quilts. I used Sharon Schamber's gluing tips (she demonstrates for binding in the link). NOW, AT LAST, I have points that match. I simply have been unable to get matching points when I use pins. Glue, I love you. I just need to quilt this and I am done. Using some Anna Maria Horner fabric in matching colors on the back.

Sharon Schamber's Glue Binding

Now, the big quilt that scares me to death. I have a good machine, but a tiny throat space - Bernina 350. I love my machine, but it took forever for me to baste this quilt (501 basting spray). I am following Ann Petersen's Crafsty class-- Quilting Big Projects on Small Machines -- to do this. Fingers crossed I manage. I swear I did what she said and set the glue with an iron, getting the wrinkles out, but the photo with my dad holding the quilt - I could not get him to go outside and it is Father's Day, after all - looks just awful. My husband helped me make the quilt sandwich, but I am not quite sure we did such a great job.

The quilt is a memorial to my mother that will go to my dad. She was killed in a house fire on Feb. 1 and this was a quilt we had picked out together for me to make for her. My dad won't care if it looks terrible, but I will. Fingers crossed I manage the biggest quilt I have made to date.

Finally, we have a quilt I am making for a friend's wedding present. Per norm, I am late getting it ready. It is a rail fence and I like it, but both my dad and my husband think it is fairly ugly. My husband said, "It is not the best quilt you have made." Hmmm. I am thinking of adding 2.5 inch gray borders to each 10 inch block, then quilting the blocks. I will join them with an inch binding strip of batik, a la Ann Petersen's class. I'm so freaked out about my dad's quilt and my small machine, that I need an easier way to create the wedding quilt throw.

If you have managed to get to this point, thanks for reading! I meant to post before this, but just never got around to it. I am so glad that I saw the post about the Slow Blogger link-up. Got me motivated again.

On another note, I am thinking of making a quiltshop hop in Missouri before I head back to Tennessee. Would go to Tula Pink's mother's shop in Stewartsville, Missouri (MO) (Country Expressions). I am not sure her mother is still co-owner or that the shop is there, but I will be close because I would definitely go to Hamilton, MO to Missouri Start Quilt Company! I will also stop by the Albrecht-Kemper Museum in St. Joseph, MO to see the Tula Pink and Luke Haynes exhibition. Too bad none of my friends are quilters or I might get some company on my journey!