Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric... Welcome to the Patriotic Quilter where I like to share all things quilty as well as red, white, and blue! Please feel free to look around and enjoy yourself! I would love to hear from you.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

I'm Back!

I know it has been forever since I last blogged.  I have been busy playing in my quilt room, but it is getting to be that time of year when things are being made for holiday gifts and I don't want anything secret to leak out!

The best thing that has happened since I last wrote was that my husband made it home from Afghanistan!!  And even a week early!!  That NEVER happens in Army life, so I wasn't getting too excited until he was on the final flight.  He has been home for almost 2 weeks now and we are having fun relaxing on the beach, snorkeling, etc.  It is a really nice time to be living in Hawaii.  All he has to do is be on leave and it's like we are on vacation!

I do have one project to share with you.  I'm the member of a non-profit organization that raises money for scholarships and financial contributions to local organizations that support the military.  One of our fund-raisers this year is to have a home tour of the historic homes on our army post.  The homes are situated on Palm Circle, the parade field which gets its name from the large, magnificent palm trees that line the perimeter.  At one of our board meetings, I got the idea to make a quilt and apply for permission to have it be an "opportunity" prize--what used to be referred to a raffle, but now is run a bit differently due to legal issues.

As I sorted through my piles of patterns and books, looking for inspiration, I didn't even have to dig very deep at all before I ran across this pattern:
 Cracked Pots by Miss Rosie.  I love house block quilts and it seemed like it would be very appropriate for a quilt representing a historic home tour.    In fact, the houses look like this:
so they are really pretty close to the house blocks in the quilt.  The only thing is that the color placement needed to be altered. 

Here is a photo of the homes from across the parade field:
I am really sorry about how washed-out these pictures are.  My Rebel must be on the wrong setting.  At any rate, you can see the magnificent palm trees and the green grass.  I wish the sky was blue as it usually is here, but it was raining and there was actually a pretty nice rainbow when I was taking these photos.  I really wanted to capture the greens of Hawaii and the blue of the sky, so I shopped for those colors.  Since the houses were white, I decided to make them white with a blue background.  Did you notice the pieced triangular border in the quilt?  If I made it green, it would really remind me of the mountains here on O'ahu.  If you've never been visited, this is what they look like.

The last detail that needed attending was the corner blocks that joined the house rows.  In the pattern they are stars, but my quilt is representing  Palm Circle, so I wanted them to be palm trees.  I searched on the internet and found a free palm tree block.  You can find it here.  The problem was that I needed the palm tree to be "on point" so that it created a circle effect.  I used the free pattern as my inspiration and drafted a block with the palm tree on point.  Here is the result:

The whole quilt came out looking just like I wanted it to.  Here is the whole thing:

The only problem I ran into was that I initially made the windows out of a creamy yellow, and they did not show up from across the room.  By the time I figured that out, I had finished the whole top, and the easiest way to fix the problem was to machine applique different windows on top of the originals.

Here is the corner detail again:

Do you see the thin strip of medium blue running around the bottom of the "mountain" border?  When I laid out the borders, I did not like how the tops of the palm trees were "bleeding" into the mountains, and my solution was to cut one-inch strips of the blue, fold them in half, and slip them in between the mountain border and house border like a piping.  I was really pleased with the definition it created without it creating any need to resize anything.

Now all that is needed is to get it quilted and seek approval to have an Opportunity Quilt.  If you think I took a big gamble by making it first, there are no worries.  More than one resident of Palm Circle has already asked if I can make any more.

One more thing.  I've been visiting everyone's blogs but am running into problems posting comments.  I'm getting the "you don't have permission to post" or whatever that error message is and I've seen the solution:  to completely log out of Blogger, but I haven't yet done that.  I'm hoping they fix the problem with an easier solution.



  1. Welcome back to blogging, JoAnne! We missed you! And a huge welcome back to your hubby! So glad you are getting to spend some fun time with him. On leave, in Hawaii....doesn't get any better than that!

    Your quilt looks amazing! You altered it perfectly to suit the new climate and colors it needed to be. And those palm trees are great! Perfect on point! This is definitely a winner of a raffle quilt! You will have no problem selling tickets on this! Great job!

  2. Regan took the words right out of my mouth. You've been missed! And what a quilt to show us upon your return... WOW. I have visited HI, and I love those mountains.. so gorgoeous, and the quilt turned out so perfectly. You captured the mountains, the palms, the houses, the water/sky. You couldn't have found a more perfect pattern. Thanks for sharing this gorgeous quilt with us!

  3. Good to see you! What beautiful pictures of the houses :-)

  4. Wow! Wonderful job on your quilt and making it "your way."