Catnip

Catnip
March 2018

My plan for this started out as a Lone Star quilt, but somewhere along the ‘quilt wall’, it turned into this. Basically, I opted to not give it points. I also broke my personal rule of avoiding white as a background color because it seemed that whatever other color I tried in place of the white just fell flat. And oh my, the white gives the center such great contrast that it screamed for the rule to be broken!

Why the name Catnip? I chose it for a variety of reasons. The cat fabric is sort of psychedelic, which I wonder if cats experience when they are partaking in the ‘nip’ πŸ™‚ The cat fabric was a donation from Barb, who had acquired the fabric when her daughter passed away from cancer (#CancerSucks). The peace symbol fabric and the first blue/teal border fabric (also in the center of the star), sort of fit with the psychedelic catnip theme going on here – both having a very 60’s vibe. These two fabrics were donations from Mary, who absolutely loves cats! I chose the other fabrics from my stash to complement the overall color scheme.

I had considered naming this one ‘Frog’ for all the seam ripping I did (rip-it, rip-it) to get everything just the way I wanted it! While I want my quilts to look good, I try to balance the need to be perfect with the need to be done: the more quilts I get done, the more I can donate to foster kids. As I quilt, I try to keep in mind the quote, “Perfection is the enemy of done”. Deep Patel wrote a good article for Forbes last summer, that includes the passage:

Effective work is about moving toward the desired destination, and not necessarily about ensuring that nothing gets spilled or knocked over in the process. Mistakes will happen. Missteps will occur. It’s momentum that matters, and ensuring that time is not wasted obsessing over the little things that won’t end up moving the needle anyway.

I love the last part about moving the needle – how apropos!

This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services, for a foster child in April 2018.

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Start Your Engines

quanket

Start Your Engines
January 2018

‘Start Your Engines’ is a fitting quip for the New Year, and for this quanket that uses a fun race car fabric! Several months ago on another post, I made a comment about how many traditional quilt designs are variations of a 9-patch. Well, here is a modern design that is also a variation of a 9-patch. Ya gotta love the 9-patch for its versatility!

If you look through the quilts I have created, I sort of am all over the place in regards to style(similar to my wardrobe – all over the place πŸ˜‰ ) I am style agnostic: I like modern, traditional and contemporary. While I really like modern quilt design, I tend to shy away from it since many designs predominately use white as a background color. I love the choice of white for its high-contrast value, but since I make these quilts for kids, I fear that white fabric is not going to go the distance. So instead of white, I use other colors for my backgrounds to help convey the modern feel.

This was a super fun, quick design that can be put together in less than a day. It is also a good scraps-buster project, especially if you have wonky-shaped scraps. The blue background fabric was some I had inherited from Edith and the race car fabric was given to me by a close friend. Most of the others were pulled from my scraps bins. There are a lot of ‘pieces of the past’ fabrics that were used in this quanket!

Quilting is more fun than Housework

This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services, for a child in foster care in April 2018.

Plan B

quanket

Plan B
October 2017

Looking for inspiration, I dug out a 1993 issue of a Quilters Newsletter magazine – remember when we used to get magazines in the mail?! I came across this diamond Bargello* design that was perfect for the fabrics I had already pulled from my stash. While the candy apple green was one of my ‘pieces of the past’ fabric (from Granny), the others were new.

I had bought the cute multi-color zigzag fabric back around Easter time. I try not to buy holiday novelty prints that are too holiday-oriented, and thought the colors and zigzag had a fun vibe, and did not scream Easter. I figured with so many colors, it would be easy to use somewhere.

So, off I go starting on this quilt. Uh-oh. I am building the rows and am about 90% done, and realize I am running out of the multi-color zigzag fabric. Ugh. There is no way the fabric store is going to have any of this fabric in October. Okay, don’t sweat it, move to Plan B. If you open the image in full screen mode, and look to the bottom left edge, you will see how I implemented my ‘Plan B’.

In general, I tend to be an over-analyzer. So, where did I go wrong? Perhaps instead of just ‘starting’ the quilt, I should have ‘planned’ the quilt and conducted much more thorough calculations and measurements. I don’t mind math (I don’t think you can if you are a quilter), but I also don’t want to dedicate too much time to calculating and measuring. And in this case, darn I was close! Alas, I am not sure what the take-away lesson is here, other than always have a Plan B – not only in quilting, but in life in general πŸ˜‰

This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services, for a foster child in October 2017.

*I am not sure when the wave, and twist and turn trends got popular with Bargello quilts. In the 1993 magazine I referenced, the diamond design was referred to as an ‘advanced’ Bargello design. However, looking at all the variations of this quilt design out on the Internet, I am humbled in what I created here.

Desert Twilight

Quanket

Desert Twilight
August 2017

The Grand Canyon-like center for this medallion quilt was fabric I had gotten from my Granny. My guess is it is circa 1970’s. It has sat in my stash for years, challenging me to do something with it. Its colors are so intense that every time I went past it, I just kept on going!

Well, it was finally time to do something with it. Since learning about medallion quilts from Melanie’s Catbird Quilt Studio blog, I have done a couple (here and here), and really enjoy the process. It seems to give a bit more freedom to the artistic aspect of designing a quilt, since not only do you choose colors and layout, but you can also use a variety of different quilt block elements as you build each border.

Quanket

I had not done Flying Geese blocks before (the first border surrounding the center), and used the tutorial here which made quick work of them! The next border was from the same fabric as the center block, as well as the tip of each of the matchstick blocks in the fourth border. So while intimidating at first, I ended-up using quite a bit of this unusual fabric to create this quanket.

I had started this project in March, and had finished it in June, mentioning my excitement about this one in my Silver Lining post in June. Part of my holding off on posting it was because I had entered it for display in the 2017 Ventura County Fair’s Home Arts pavilion. And while the County Fair was in early August, I had other priorities in life over the summer that delayed my posting this blog. This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services, for a foster child in October 2017.

Silver Lining

Silver Lining Quanket

Silver Lining
June 2017

If you are needing an easy pattern that can be done in a day or two, or a great scraps buster, this is the pattern for you! This is a framed squares quilt design, which is an easy and versatile pattern. In preparing to write this blog post, I searched for framed squares quilts on Google, and really enjoyed seeing all the different interpretations of this pattern! Quilts remind me of snowflakes – each one so unique.

While my scraps bins are overflowing, and I honestly should have tackled those first, I had some remnant pieces I had recently purchased that I was itching to use. While I usually try to incorporate some pieces of the past fabrics into my quankets, my supply of the larger pieces has really dwindled! And what I have tends to be odd colors and patterns, which is going to require some strategic planning on my part in how best to use them in a quilt. But, I am up to the challenge πŸ™‚ In fact, I have another project on my quilt wall now that I am excited to show you in the coming weeks.

This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services, for a foster child in June, 2017.

Puddy Tat

Quanket

Puddy Tat
April 2017

Have you ever noticed how a lot of the more traditional quilt patterns seem to be a version of a standard 9-patch quilt? This quilt pattern is called Panache, and can be found here. I had come across this design over at Hyacinth Quilt Design, which by the way, I love how she came about choosing the name for her blog.

Most of the fabrics I used in my Puddy Tat quanket are new, with the exception of one that was left over from a quanket I had made for my Mom many years ago, and some 4″ squares I had gotten when I visited the Latimer Quilt and Textile Center in Tillamook in 2015. A couple of these cut squares had the maker’s mark on the edge, Aunt Jane’s RJR Fashion. It’s a cute fabric, with small pink, white and blue flowers (?) on a tan background. I am not sure if it is vintage, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it is – it has that look about it.

This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services, for a foster child in June 2017.

Alphabet Soup

A-B-Champion

Alphabet Soup
March 2017

Alphabet Soup is a floor play quilt that I made for my grandson Nolan. A floor play quilt is intended for laying on the floor for babies to do tummy time and for a place for them to play with their toys, before they start to crawl.

The alphabet fabric was a new acquisition, while the blue cornering squares were a ‘pieces of the past’ fabric from Nolan’s maternal great grandmother Edith’s stash. Nolan brings Edith’s great-grandson’s total now to six. However, Nolan’s cousin Ivy broke great-grandma’s 6-boy-straight streak. I know that Edith is up in heaven enjoying all seven of her beautiful great-grandkids!