The design for this baby quilt began with the owl fabric, that I fussy cut to showcase the owls. It will be donated as part of this year’s Hands2Help Challenge being hosted by Sarah over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict @fabricaddictquilts. The cute owl fabric is the last of this fabric which I had previously used in Hoots, which went to Little Lambs Foundation for Kids for the 2018 Hands2Help challenge. This quilt is also heading off to Little Lambs Foundation for Kids @littlelambsfoundationforkids for this year’s challenge.
The log cabin blocks were made from yellow and teal scraps. I like to store my scraps by color, in photo boxes. While some people prefer to precut their scraps to common sizes, I do not cut my scraps before putting in the boxes, but just leave them whatever size/shape they are. I find this gives me more flexibility for future projects.
Here’s a baby quilt that will be donated to Little Lambs Foundation for Kids @littlelambsfoundationforkids as part of this year’s Hands2Help Challenge being hosted by Sarah over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict @fabricaddictquilts.
The fabric of the animals riding around in cars is the last I have of this fabric, which I also used in Twizzler Goes for a Ride and Toodles. The blue, cream-colored and dark green blocks are all solid fabrics, which is deceiving since the fleece I used for the backing on this quanket (blanket + quilt = quanket) shows through when held up to light. The fleece backing is green with big white polka dots, making an interesting echo from the back to the front.
Fun fact: the letter E in the NATO phonetic alphabet is Echo and its morse code is a dot.
While it has been quiet here on my blog for the past few months, my sewing room has been anything but quiet! I’ve been working on improving my quilting skills, which I like to do on smaller-sized items, as they are more manageable on my standard domestic sewing machine. I made four table runners, shown in the picture below. The Valentine ones were for each of my daughters, the blue one was for my youngest daughter’s birthday, and the one that looks like a serapa blanket was for me. I have also been working on a couple of larger quilts, which have been keeping my sewing days busy.
I’ve slowed down a little on making charity quilts over the past few months, as due to Covid, my local county’s Children and Family services has been closed to visitors, so dropping off my donation quilts has been a challenge. Luckily, Sarah over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict @fabricaddictquilts is currently hosting the Hands2Help Challenge, and Little Lambs Foundation for Kids @littlelambsfoundationforkids is once again one of the receiving participants, which is where this baby quilt is heading.
This scrappy quilt incorporates an orphan block from my Hoplon quilt as the center block. The Valentine table runners I made used the crumb block technique — which by the way is super fun — and since I had all my pink scraps thrown on my sewing table, I decided to just keep making pink crumb blocks, which I used for the setting triangles. I attempted doing a fish scale quilting design (free motion), and while it ended up looking more like squares with arced sides, I was happy with the end result.
I have made several quilts and quankets this year using mainly scraps, making me think scraps must be genetically related to rabbits, because they multiply so quickly! My gray, white and black scrap bin was still too full for the lid to sit on it properly, so I made this string quanket. I had the green fleece for the backing in my stash, so I pulled in some green scraps leftover from my recent Tiger Tracks project to add a bit of fun color for the top. I also incorporated a few fussy cut squares of dinosaur fabric leftover from my Prehistoric Pennies quanket to add a bit of whimsy.
This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services for a child in foster care in October 2020.
I enjoy experimenting with different quilt techniques and methods, and wanted to try doing an attic window quilt. When I started looking around to purchase a panel, this gorgeous creature caught my eye! However, when he got home and onto my design wall, it quickly became apparent that 1) he was too beautiful to cut up and 2) he would be alarmingly close to my attic window, if I had an attic window 🙂 Instead, I chose to use simple borders and let him be the star of this show.
For the quilting, I stitched around some of the key elements in the tiger panel, using seven different colored threads so that they blended well. While there were a lot of threads to knot and bury, the final effect was well worth the effort. For the borders, I quilted big tiger paws all around. I pieced the back (shown below), which allowed me to use standard 44″ wide fabric.
The majority of quilts I make are quankets – fleece backed tops that I tie – so I feel I’m still a bit of a newbie when it comes to the traditional method of sandwiching the top, batting and fabric back. My foray into traditional quilting began with the QAYG method (quilt as you go), quilting each individual block and then joining them. I then progressed to doing bigger quilted sections, keeping a section not much wider than 20″ since I quilt on a standard sewing machine. However, this quilt didn’t lend itself well to the QAYG method, so I quilted at the full size which is roughly 54″x60″. I hear other quilters comment how their shoulders get sore after quilting a bigger quilt on a standard sewing machine, and I certainly learned firsthand what they are talking about! I rigged up some overhead clamps to hold much of the quilt’s mass off of the sewing table, to reduce the amount of drag, which helped a lot. But, I still need to come up with a better solution for reducing the drag across the very front edge of my sewing cabinet where I’m sitting.
I gifted this to my 2-year old nephew Harry, whose reaction upon seeing it was a gasp and then a whispered, “Wow”. I think that’s one of the best compliments I’ve gotten on one of my quilts!
Here’s my blue version from Jacquelynne Steves Silver Linings SAL (sew along) that I participated in during the Spring. Like my pink version, Aurora, I stitched an owl to work with my overall owl theme. But instead of embroidering the owl this time, I did it as cross-stitch, since I’m much more familiar with cross stitching — much fewer stitches to know/learn than embroidery 🙂
I used scraps for all the blocks, and fabric from my stash for the sashing, cornerstones and binding. The blocks are 6″ and since the SAL only had twelve blocks, plus six embroidery blocks that I chose not to do, I pieced extra blocks to make the finished size 40″x46″ so it can work for a baby or young child.
This was donated to the County of Ventura, Children & Family Services for a child in foster care in October 2020.
Pocket Full of Monsters
Patterns for quilts can come from a variety of atypical places. I often notice quilt designs in tile installations. My grandson has a math activity book that has Pokemon characters drawn in grid format, which on seeing it, I instantly saw quilt potential.
At the beginning of the pandemic, my daughter asked me about doing a sewing project with her and my grand-kids via video calls. Since my grandson is currently into Pokemon, I had her send me the Pikachu picture from his activity book, and I then cut the needed pieces from fabric I had in my stash. Each week I would mail them two rows which they would sew together. The pieces were 3.5″ which by placing into two stacks, fit into a standard #10 envelop. I added card stock on either side of the fabric to add rigidity. My grandson enjoyed ‘decoding’ the pieces each week – sort of like a puzzle, figuring out where each piece needed to go.
When they finished the Pikachu portion, my grandson asked, “what do we do with it now”? He felt that using it as a blanket at that point seemed like it was going to be too rough and scratchy on the back – the seam side 🙂 We discussed using it as a wall hanging, a quilt or a quanket and he decided he wanted it finished into a quanket.
They returned Pikachu to me for adding the borders, binding and backing. Luckily I found the Robert Kaufman Pokemon card panel from Hancocks of Paducah which was perfect for the border! I say ‘luckily’ because before the pandemic, I probably would not have known this particular fabric existed as I rarely purchased fabric online. I would just run down to the local fabric store to get something that worked with my design and I’m pretty sure they would not have had this fabric. In the first few months of the pandemic, running down to the fabric store was not an option. Since March, I have shifted pretty much all of my fabric and notions purchases to online, with trips into my local store being the rarity.
The finished size is approximately 54″ x 60″. I typically tie quankets, but since the Pikachu didn’t really work for this, I instead did a running stitch to outline him and did ties in the border.
When I can’t sail, I quilt. My husband and I have been sailors for over 30 years, so naturally, when the grandkids came on the scene, we taught them that a nice onshore breeze is synonymous with good sailing. We often say, “Nice onshore breeze, we should go sailing!” Now that they are a bit older, we merely start the sentence, “Nice onshore breeze”, and they finish it 🙂
I made this quilt as a gift for my granddaughter’s 4th birthday which was earlier this month. When trying to get ideas for a design, I asked her what her favorite color is (blue, at that moment) and her favorite animal (cow, at that moment). I opted to design around her favorite color, as while I like cows, they were just not sparking much creative inspiration for me.
But, I didn’t have much in the way of blue fabric left in my stash (no cows either). With more time on my hands during the past several months, my stash has been substantially depleted. The pandemic has also made fabric acquisition very challenging! I was able to order three jelly rolls – two in a blue colorway, and one in aqua, however getting solid fabrics has been nearly impossible – both online and in stores! Where once there had been a dozen or two of various Kona solids on the store shelves, now there are seldom more than a half dozen. Fortunately, on one of my rare trips to the fabric store in the past two months, they happened to have turquoise Kona fabric. Needless to say, I scooped some up right quick to use for the back. I incorporated the leftover fabric from the front to create a strip down the back, which helped get around the issue of the solid fabric being only 45″ wide and my needing 54″ for the width. Warning for fellow quilters (in case you haven’t already found this out): the jelly rolls were supposed to be 2.5″ wide, however they were not! I am so glad that I checked them before I began assembling. The blue rolls were 2.75″ while the aqua was 2.625″. So, I trimmed the blue to be the same as the aqua.
As with the past few quilts I’ve made, I did this using the quilt as you go (QAYG) method. I built the quilt in three horizontal panels roughly 20″ x 54″, so quilting it on my domestic machine was much easier. I kept the quilting pretty simple, doing wavy lines. Because the front reminds me of ocean waves, my intention for the wavy lines was to emulate an onshore breeze across the water.