Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Sewing Room Shut Down

In the course of putting together my scrappy hearts quilt another iron bit the dust!  I've only had this iron for five months and already it was building up black deposits on the soleplate and spitting from the steam holes.

My attempts to clean the soleplate were unsuccessful and I wasn't thrilled about dancing around with a leaking problem, given how my last iron died, so I called customer service to request a replacement.  Unfortunately, the process required me to mail in the plug from this iron, so my sewing room will be shut down for a few weeks.

In the meantime, today brings my second year of blogging to a close and I would like to celebrate by sending some fabric and notions to one lucky reader!  There's no picture, because I don't have one yet, but I hope you'll play anyway!


In order to win, please leave a comment telling me what pattern you would use to make a quilt from a fat quarter bundle.  A winner will be drawn one week from today.

Linking up with Let's Bee Social.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Field of Hearts - Binding Options

My Field of Hearts top is finished!

I was trying very hard to have this quilt completely finished by this weekend so that I could hand deliver it, but unfortunately that didn't end up being possible.  This pattern was too complex for my timeline to have worked out, but I do think this turned out the perfect quilt for the situation.

Next up is a decision about the binding.  The block purple color is being tested along the top, and one of the blues used for hearts is laid out along the side.


The finished size of this top is 59.5 x 73.  My throw quilts these days tend to finish around 66 x 84 inches and I was thinking that this quilt was a little on the small side.  Then I measured another throw quilt that I had made in 2008 and it was only 54 x 60!  Very interesting how our perceptions can change over time.

Linking up to Let's Bee Social and WiP Wednesday.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Scrappy Hearts - Building Blocks

I had been hoping to have the "Field of Hearts" top finished for today, but I'm not quite that far along.  However, I did finish making all 110 hearts of varying colors and have started making them into blocks!

Since scrappy quilting isn't my forte and I wanted to do all these fabrics justice, I used a random sequence generator to distribute the hearts.  It was a quicker and easier process than trying to do "random" on my own (don't laugh!), which was just what I needed.  It's working out nicely, I think!

The first four blocks, at night.

I also acquired and pre-washed a very pretty purple batik fabric for the back.  I didn't have anything in my stash that worked well.  Apparently my stash could use a purple infusion!

Backing fabric with a pile of hearts coming through the machine!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Scrappy Hearts - In Progress

19 hearts down, 91 to go!
Last week I got busy with my rotary cutter and prepped all the heart pieces for Field of Hearts.  I cut my blues with an eye towards minimizing waste so it went a lot slower than my usual method; cutting strips by WOF and cross-cutting!

That done, I continued on and made four patches.

Then I was out of town for the weekend and didn't sew, but I've since gotten started on turning my four patches into hearts.  I will need 110 hearts to make the quilt size I have planned. 30 of them will be the light purple and 80 will be the dark.

My layout is going to feel quite a bit different than the original pattern.  The designer made all of her hearts with very similar background colors, whereas I have pulled two fairly different purples and will have more of a block and sashing look.


Linking up with Let's Bee Social and WiP Wednesday.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Scrappy Hearts Origin Story

I started something new over the holidays.  There is a young lady in my family who can use all the love and good wishes she can get right now.  To me that means she needs a quilt, ASAP!

I chose Cindy Carter's scrappy four patch hearts pattern before I even got back to my sewing room.  What better way to send health and happiness than with a quilt full of hearts?

Her favorite colors are blue and purple so I started pulling those fabrics from my stash the moment I got home.  There was a little of this and a little of that, but I managed to find nine dark blues that went together well.  I was shy on purple, so I still had to visit the fabric store. (Oh calamity!) 

I thought the quilt would be scrappy enough with all of the blues chosen for the hearts, so the plan was to find a single purple for the background.  My selection of blues had other ideas...

And now the fabric is washed, pressed, and ready to cut.  So off I go!

Linking up with Let's Bee Social.

Monday, December 15, 2014

An Experiment in Binding

After having such trouble with the binding on the card trick potholders I decided to try and find another way.  I had attempted to join the ends the same way I would on a quilt, after it was partially attached, and there just wasn't enough play along the short little sides.

My first thought was to cut the back large and roll it over the same way I do on baby quilts.  Then I promptly cut the pieces too small and had to come up with a new plan.

I found a tutorial to make the binding into a loop with a straight join before attaching it to the potholder, and I thought I might be able to adapt that method to use an angled join.

First I cut a strip of fabric at 2.25 inches.  I lined it up on the potholder to determine where my ends would wind up.  These potholders were a little smaller than the last, so one strip fit just fine.  Then I cut the ends so there was a 2.25 inch overlap.


I lined up the corners and drew a diagonal from one edge to the other.  I sewed on this line, trimmed the excess triangles off, and then ironed the loop in half.


Then I pinned the loop of binding down to the front of the potholder.  It was a little on the large side, so I might make it a very little bit smaller next time.  It wasn't too big that I couldn't make it work by easing it in a little as I went though.


The moment of truth!  The corners seemed a little more determined to give me trouble with the mitering, but it's pinned down now and ready for a little hand sewing tonight!  Just in time, because these will start their journey on Wednesday!  Phew!


Linking up with MOP Monday.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Card Tricks Complete!

My card tricks are all finished!  Hip hip hooray!

A pair of tricks!


     
A view of the back.
They finished at eight inches square and were constructed with two layers of cotton batting.

I think they turned out fairly well.  More practice is needed for sure, but not too shabby for a first attempt!

In other first attempt news, one of the local quilt stores had a class on using a Nolting long arm machine this weekend.  I think I liked it better than quilting on my little machine.  I found she was certainly more intuitive for free-motion!

The store owner had 15(!) quilts still to finish before Christmas, so it may take a while to get some more practice in, but I'm already planning to come back in the new year to try again!

Linking up with Let's Bee Social.