I know that I have not been blogging much lately. This year seems so odd to me--I'm having difficulty sticking with projects. I think I need to assign myself a "Word of the Year" and that word needs to be "Focus." Or, instead, maybe I should give myself permission to be a bit flaky this year, and then start fresh next year. At any rate, I feel like I'm not getting much done, but then this morning I looked through my phone pictures and there is quite a bit there that I could be sharing.
Despite feeling like I'm jumping into different projects, I have really been steadily working on Austin Bluebird. I'm almost done with the largest applique block. It is 30" finished and has lots of leaves and berries. Once it is finished, I just have one other applique block to do and there is a little bit of the piecing left to do and then I can sew it all together! I think I'm going to add a border to it, so that it is bed-sized versus a coverlet, so I've been considering just what to do there. I know for sure that I'm going to "float" the center and put a wide border of the background fabric on first--I can see this cream border beautifully quilted with feathers! Then I want to add a narrow dog-tooth or saw-tooth border. I have a couple possibilities in mind.
(Sorry for the sideways picture) This is the completed half, in case you were wondering what Austin Bluebird is. It is a pattern by Minick and Simpson based on an antique coverlet.
There is a space on the quilt to include the year and the maker's initials. I embroidered those being VERY optimistic and dating it 2015. That means I HAVE to finish the quilt this year, ha ha.
Something else that I made recently is this:
It's another Schnibble pattern by Carrie Nelson, Open Season. I love making flying geese with the Fit to Be Geese ruler--they are made oversize and then trimmed to be perfect. It takes a bit more work to do the trimming, but having no "wonky" geese is so worth it. The fabric is the reason I made the quilt. It is Barbara Brackman's latest collection, Union Blues. I love the shades of blues and the browns that accompany them.
Something else that distracted me was that I made another Kid's Quilt for our guild. Every member is supposed to make one to donate to Camp Whatchawannado--a camp for kids who are cancer-survivors. They want to have about 120-130 to pass out. In our April Guild Newsletter, it sounded like we might not have enough, so I decided to make another. I got on Pinterest to find some inspiration and came across this link. The author, JJScraps, made a wonderful Star Wars quilt for her son.
This is my version
She basically made a Jelly Roll Race quilt. (Also known as 1600 or lasagne, or other fun names.) That is where you take a jelly roll (or 40 2.5" strips) and sew them together end to end so you have one seriously long strip. (40 strips at about 40" long equals 1600 inches, hence the name: 1600.) Then you fold it in half and sew a bottom to a top, then in half again, and again, and again until the piece is 32 strips tall.
There are several variations you can do to "jazz it up." I added darker gray 2.5" squares between all of my strips. That fabric was from my stash and had stars on it. The other gray fabrics I bought at JoAnn Fabrics. (I didn't use a jelly roll--I cut 2.5" strips from yardage.) I need to add here that I had never made one of these quilts before. They are a bit "too random" for me. I will confess that I manipulated it the first time I folded the really long stip in half. I didn't allow any of the gray squares to touch each other. Once it was folded and sewn again, I couldn't control anything anymore and it was really hard to "let go" of the control, ha ha. I do think the randomness really works in this version, though,
This project went quick. I shopped on Friday, came home and prewashed, cut the strips, and began "the race." I finished it on Saturday and then layered and began the quilting. I didn't touch it on Sunday, but finished the quilting on Monday morning. Then I added the appliques. It was much, much easier to quilt it all-over before the shapes were added.
To get the ship shapes, I googled for "Star Wars Silhouettes" and found these. I printed them out as large as possible, but still needed to go to the copy shop to enlarge them further. I used black flannel and fused them on. Once they were fused, I straight-stiched around the applique just inside the edge. I used black flannel because I had some--the back of the quilt, which I forgot to photograph, was made of a black Star Wars flannel. It wasn't wide enough, so I added a strip of plain black flannel.
Once I had the appliques on, I machine binded it and it was finished. That Monday was "Star Wars Day," May the 4th. "May the fourth be with you--get it?" Anyway, I just hope there is a Star Wars fan attending the camp. I also have enough strips left over to make another one, maybe for next year.
I believe one of my readers out there had expressed interest in also donating a quilt. I remember emailing her about it but I was just searching for the messages and could not find them. I'm so sorry! At any rate, I do know that someone from the state of Missouri made and donated 2 beautiful quilts to the guild for the camp. The organizers did not show the quilts to us, but did tell the guild about it. If it is one of you, I hope you let me know. How generous!
I guess that is all for now. I hope to to be back very soon with more!
Have a great day,