Category Archives: paper piecing

Almost Home

As a person who does some quilting almost daily, being away from my stash for two months is a challenge. Obviously I needed to plan ahead for my snowbird vacation, and take work with me. This year I decided to work on some things that have been on the back burner for a while, as well as working on the pieces I started at QuiltCon.

I posted soon after I got here, excited about my curved piecing. I had decided I needed to work on drunkard’s path blocks to improve my curved piecing skills. I have a ton of 5″ charm square blocks.. they are so cute, and so beautifully packaged that I am instantly drawn to them. And they are the perfect size for the drunkard path block. I initially worked with all the greens I could find as I sorted through my stash, and combined them with Kona Snow.  Not enough blocks to make a quilt yet… I have a total of 185 blocks. I am thinking of making it 77 x 84″, which means I have made 35% of the total number I need. Not bad!

I enjoyed making these blocks so much that I selected more charm square blocks, and combined them with Kona Silver. I am only using one of the two blocks this pattern makes here (love circles right now!), so I will have lots of leftovers for another project, another day. So far I have only made 70 of these. Right now I am thinking of using them to make placemats and a table runner… we’ll see.


Before I left for Georgia, I spent a wonderful day with Shirley and Jane preparing fabric to make a one block wonder quilt. Can’t wait to see what their quilts turn out like! I love making this quilt as I don’t have to think about the fabric at all after I have made my initial selection, and I have made a number of these quilts already. After carefully setting up your fabric, just cut and sew, and watch with wonder how the blocks turn out. I found enough fabric in my stash to make 6 more of these quilts.. sigh! I pieced this while away, and photographed it hanging from a branch of a magnolia tree in our side yard.. lots of Spanish moss in the garden!


I made no progress at all on my version of the spiderweb quilt, posted about here. Mainly because I did tons of paper piecing to finish my blocks from Amy Friend’s Crazy Eights class I took at QuiltCon. I pieced these blocks into sets of 4, and decided to remove the paper at this point, as I know how hard it will be to work on a huge piece using forceps to get those tiny bits of leftover paper out. I will use tons of Best Press to stop the bias edges from stretching as I piece these blocks together. I made the blocks slightly smaller than the pattern called for so that the pattern would fit on standard letter sized paper. There are now 16 blocks, so this will make a 58 x 58″ quilt when completed. Making these blocks was fun, but removing the paper much less fun. Fingers crossed that I can get that all done without undoing any seams!


I belong to a small sewing group that meets once a month, and we do a gift exchange at Christmas. In 2015 I got a Lil Twister template. It involves sewing charm square blocks together, and then using the template to create new blocks. I have wanted to give it a try for a while, so I used a charm square pack and sewed a 40 x 40″ top. I found it easy to mess up the piecing together of these blocks, and ended up having to trash some of them. The final piece is pretty small: 21″ X 21″. It looks muddy to me, obviously I chose the wrong fabrics: solids or tiny designs would work best. Not sure what this will end up as, but I am glad I tried this template at last.


I made no progress on Heather Jones’ West Chester quilt or Violet Craft’s Bunny blocks (both mentioned in my last post). BUT there is one more project I have been working on.. my son and his wife are expecting a baby in 6 weeks (yeah!!), and are waiting to see whether it is a boy or girl.  I decided on this pale green colour, and here is my sweater so far. The pattern is from a book by Sublime, and I am making it in a machine washable acrylic. Size one, so I have a lot of time to get it done.


Photos from my retreat from winter… Saint Simon’s Island, Georgia.


Winter Retreat

Week 1:
I am on my winter retreat- or more correctly, my retreat from winter. Weather here (Saint Simons Island, GA) is warm and sunny, so I am always surprised that the sun goes down so early. Even though I am no longer working and every day is like a vacation, this feels like a REAL vacation. I spend more time sewing, and only work on things I brought with me. The rest of my time is spent biking, walking the beach, exploring the island and environs, cooking, etc.
This is what I have done in my first week here… it is a variation of the spider web quilt block, and I really love how the hexagon rings stand out. I realize I didn’t bring enough fabric to finish this quilt, but I will make as many blocks as I can, and finish it later. I spent a lot of time on google images and Pinterest researching this pattern, and no longer remember where I saw the inspiration for this particular layout. I will add the original source if I am able to find it.
wip_1
I’ll try to post weekly, IF I remember!


Play Day

I really appreciate those days when I put aside everything that I need to do, and just play. I pinned a block on Pinterest called Ellen’s Snowball  last year, and a year later I still love it, so I decided to make one, in shades of blue. It is paper pieced, which I have not done for a while, and makes a 12 1/2″ block. It went together easily, and the very centre is not too bumpy, considering how many pieces meet here.
block

I now think I will make a medallion quilt, with this block as the centrepiece. I have accumulated quite a bit of blue / white fabrics, so I won’t need to visit any shops real time or online for more. (I think….). It may be a while before I get back to this, meanwhile it will hang on my design wall tempting me, and reminding me to research medallion quilts to see if there are any fun, interesting, new rounds that others have used in their quilts.

Evolution of a quilt design.. making it your own

Last summer, I saw a quilt called “Everyday Best“, a Piece O’ Cake design from their book Quilts with a Spin. I was with a group of fellow quilters at Quilts at the Creek, a wonderful outdoor quilt show held annually at Black Creek Pioneer Village in Toronto, Canada. We were all so impressed with the design that we challenged ourselves to make this quilt. I have a large collection of spotted fabric, so I was sure this would be a “piece of cake”! I got started right away, and here are some of the blocks I made.. circles

I then got busy with other things, and somehow lost interest in finishing the quilt. I have been using a lot of solids lately, and was playing on my design wall with the completed arcs and some solid reds. I was sketching, something I don’t usually do, and liked this layout so much it was the starting point for phase 2..

sketch

The red squares have been pieced, and here is the quilt in its current state- quite a transformation! So much more me. There will be a solid border of contrasting colour added, and I hope to have that added and the quilting done so that I can show it at Quilts at the Creek 2014.

SpinQuilt

And here it is, completed.

IMG_0361

Becky Goldsmith was thrilled with this challenge, and posted about it on her blog- with pictures of all our quilts. Click here for the link.