Monday, 5 November 2018

Keep on Keeping On

     For I think the 3rd month in a row I haven't gotten my goal done and I almost didn't bother to post one this month thinking that maybe I've been jinxing myself, but I actually started working on my October goal yesterday and I realized it would be fairly easy to finish it this month. So I'm giving it one more try.  I'll be working on the first month of the Sampler plus quilt along with Paige of Quilted Blooms and Cheryl of Meadow Mist Designs.  Here's the proof that I've been working on it.

     I've been having a hard time with quilting and blogging and even reading blogs lately.  It's been a combination of a virus hanging around, burnout and grey skies.  However in the past week I've noticed a lot of positive resources coming to me and my quilting mojo is coming back.  Interestingly enough some of the resources have come through some newsletters I receive.  Through the Scrap Basket newsletter (A Quilter's Table) I was taken to this article on Diary of a Quilter. This was a guest post written by Samantha Dorn of Aqua Paisley studio. It's a post on five ways to make you feel motivated. My main take aways from this article were to show up and to start small.

     So I started small with this project.  It's a left over kit from the guild Bee Day.  It was an Eye Spy quilt top that was donated to us and was a little too small for our use.  It needed three rows added to the side and three rows added to the bottom.  I chose it partially because nobody else did, but also because I knew its bright colours and whimsy would help lift my mood.

     I thought it might be difficult to match the original makers 1/4" seam but it went together with no difficulty.

     It felt good to get another quilt top done for our outreach program.  This one will go to one of the few younger kids that the program serves.

     From there I moved on to the "ugly" fabric challenge and I'll share a sneak peak of the two quilts tops I came up with.

     Keep in mind that "ugly" fabric challenge was the name given to the challenge by the quilt shop owners who gave us the fat quarter in the first place.  The idea was to use a colour palette you wouldn't normally use.  My "ugly" fat quarter was the fabric with the browns and golds and blacks and it's in both quilts.   These are due on Thursday and I'm not sure if I will have them both quilted by then but I'll bring them along regardless.

     It feels good to be back in the sewing room and I'll share more of the good things that have helped to bring me back there in future posts.  I'll be off to work, once I link up with Patty of Elm Street Quilts. I hope you all have a great day and that you are open to the blessings that come your way.

Friday, 26 October 2018

A Little Bit of Fall

     There is a little bit of Fall in the air and I thought I would share a couple of Fall like quilt tops with you.  Last Saturday we had our bee day at the Royal City Quilters Guild.  Bee day is when we get together to sew quilt tops for our Community Outreach program and for the last couple of years I have organized the days.  I put together the kits for both of these quilts but I only sewed the first one.  Here is a close up of most of the fabrics in the quilt.  

     When coming up with quilt kits we pretty much use what ever fabric we have in the guild stash.  This is one of the first kits I put together and at that time our stash was quite limited.
I loved the floral fabric in this quilt and that's where I started.

     Most of the recipients of our quilts are young women so we try to make several quilts every year that are bold and modern and I think this one fits that category. It finishes at about 53 inches by 62 inches. I based the design of this quilt on a block from the book Block a Day by Lucinda Ganderton.  The block pattern is called Bubble and Squeek and I greatly enlarged it and added a row.  It went together very quickly as a quilt top but I think the block itself would be challenging with all those tiny pieces in a 12" block. Imagine the quilt above with the bottom row chopped off and shrunk down to 12" square and that's the block.

      Here's the other Fall Like Quilt.  It was put together by Carol.  It blends right in with the leaves on my lawn.

     The chrysanthemum fabric was the starting point here and the quilt is roughly based on the easy middle part of a free quilt pattern from Art Gallery Fabrics called Elephant Walk.

     This is my last year in an organizational capacity with the outreach committee so I am spending a little bit of time thinking about what I do so that I can pass it on to one or more people.  Bee Day is the last big thing I had to do this year (which ends in June) and I'm looking forward to spending a bit more time on my own projects.  I'm going to link my post up to Lets Bee Social next week but for now I'm going to check out the finishes at TGIFF and Bragg About Your Beauties and as I have a finished quilt top to share, no matter how simple, I guess I'll link up there as well.

Friday, 19 October 2018

A Friday Finish.

          Here's my latest finish.  it doesn't have a name but I guess I could call it the Modern Shwe Shwe challenge.  Here's the story.

     A couple of summers ago I was with some friends at the Canadian Quilters Association Show in Toronto.  At the show there was a display of quilts from the Ottawa Modern Quilt Guild and a part of that show was a display of quilts from a Linen challenge they had done.  The three of us had just joined the Grand Valley Modern Quilt Guild and this gave me the idea to have a challenge there.  One member of the guild Celeste owns Meerkat Shweshwe, so I thought it would be fun to use shweshwe fabric in our challenge.  It's an unusual choice for Modern Quilts.

     Shweshwe is a traditional fabric made in South Africa.  It has small patterns and has been traditionally available in indigo and brown.  More recently it has become available in several brighter colours.  You can read about the history on the Meerkat Shweshwe site here.

     I got the inspiration for my quilt from some pillow patterns in the book Lines by Design by Debbie Grifka.  Here's where I started.  Using the techniques in her book for sewing strips with two colours behind them.

    The lighter blue and the pink are shweshwe fabrics. The background colours are Kona silver and Kona Regal.  They are leftover fabrics from the Quilters Planner Quilt.  
     Once I had the initial pieces on the design wall I cut and pasted and made more units trying them out in different ways and went from this...

to this...

to this...

to the final result at the top of the post.  You can see that during the process I shortened the top blue stripes section and took out the pink stripes on grey.  I felt that the quilt was more balanced this way.  I quilted with straight line quilting gong in several different directions.

     I learned a lot while working on this piece.  For one thing I don't sew a straight as I would like to.  I think in the future I would spray baste the fabric before starting and that would help in this regard.  I did spray baste after I made the stripes but it would have been better to have done it before.  Lining up the purple edges as I sewed the pieces together was also quite challenging.

     I'm really happy with the resulting quilt and the we had a lot of fun at the guild meeting sharing our challenges.  You can see the other quilts here.  I'm joining the link ups at Brag About Your Beauties hosted by Michele of From Bolt to Beauty, and at TGIFF which is hosted this week by Fiona at  Celtic Thistle Stitches.

Saturday, 13 October 2018

4th Quarter Goals

     Last Quarter I only managed one finish but I didn't link it up because I didn't write the post until I could get some half decent photos and by then it was too late.  If you would like to see it it's here.  No worries.  It's time to link up my goals for the rest of the year and I'm only going to list four.  Anything else that gets done is bonus.  So here goes.

     Last month the owners of the Red Red Bobbin fabric store came to guild and they issued us a challenge.  They had each of us choose an "ugly" fat quarter, or to put it another way a fat quarter in colours you wouldn't normally go to.  We are all to make a mini quilt with that fabric and then we will vote on the quilts and the winner will get a ruler.  Here's my fabric.  The fabric on the left is the fabric I chose to work with and the ones on the right are fabrics I might use with it.  I guess that's a good deal for them . Give me one fat quarter and I ended up buying five, all in colours and patterns I wouldn't normally use except for maybe the purple one on the bottom and the yellow one on the top.

I'm also going to quilt this baby quilt.  I need to be practicing my free motion quilting over the next couple of months so this is my first one.

     If I get this one done then I'll move on to the Fire burst Mystery Quilt and see if I can get it finished as well.

     For my last goal I can't show you any fabric but I plan to participate in the next Curated Quilts Challenge so I'll be hoping to finish that as well.  I think the next challenge announcement is in November so I'll be picking the fabric then.  I have only worked on one other Curated Quilts mini quilt challenge so far.  You can see it here.

     I'm linking up to the 4th quarter link up of the 2018FAL on Leanne's blog She Can Quilt.

Thursday, 11 October 2018

Quilters Planner Quilt Take Two

     Well we finally got a little sunshine and I've been able to get some photos of the Quilter's Planner quilt.  The planner quilt was designed by Cheryl Brickey of Modern Mist Designs and was planned as a year long quilt along but I skipped ahead to get it done for my Traditional Guild's quilt show.  The Quilters Planner comes with a pattern magazine and this was one of the patterns.

     I really pushed hard to finish the quilt in the summer so I could get it quilted by Mary Hopkins who blogs at Quilted Art from Mary Katherine Hopkins.  Mary is a member of the traditional quild I belong to.  She does a lot of quilting for our donation quilts and she does a great job.  Here's a close up of the quilting.

     There is  a lot of shade in the back yard but I still think you get an idea of the fabrics and colours.  I used Kona Silver for the background colour and Kona Regal for the darker sashing.  In the  blocks I used Libs Elliot Fabrics for the most part with a few Allison Glass and Kaffe Fasset  thrown in for interest.

      Working on this quilt was a skill builder for me and I could tell that I have gotten better at lining things up with flying geese an such.   Although I've quilted for many years many of the quilts have been made for charity and are more basic than this one.  The outside triangles for the on point setting where also very challenging and I was considering switching to a different orientation but I persevered.

      I'll be giving this quilt to Evan (my nephew) and Allie who where married in September. I'll be linking up with TGIFF which is hosted this week by Becca of Pretty Piney and I'm linking up at Brag About your Beauties which is hosted by Michelle of  From Bolt to Beauty.

Sunday, 7 October 2018

Octobers Goal

     The weather has not been co-operating with me, and I have yet to get outside to take any good photos of my planner quilt...hopefully tomorrow.  Since I finished the planner quilt I've been working madly on a challenge quilt which I can't share pictures of until after Thursday and I have to say it has been quite a challenge.  I'm about to start quilting it but I needed a break. So I thought I would take that break and write a post about my goal for October.  I am falling behind in my two quilt alongs and I've decided to take the month of October to work on catching up.  

     The specific goal is to finish the August (yes that would be August) steps for the Modern Plus Signs Quilt Along hosted by Cheryl Brickey of Meadowmist Designs and Paige Alexander of Quilted Blooms.  I managed to cut those strips in August and they are ready for me to go.  But first I have to finish my challenge, I guess I better get back to it.  I'm linking up to the October monthly goal linkup with Patty of Elm Street Quilts.

Sunday, 30 September 2018

Septembers Goal is done

     I've been absent from Social Media pretty much all month. September is always a crazy busy time for me and this month there was an out of town wedding that took up a weekend and a quilt show to prepare for and finish up quilts for.  I did get my September goal finished but then I had to whisk it off to the quilt show organizers before I could get a half decent photo shoot so here's a quick pick of it at the show and I promise to give you more details and a better write up later.

     It's not the best photo but it's the only one I have at the moment.  I'll get some better ones for later.   So it's the quilters planner quilt along quilt.