Sunday, October 16, 2016

Finish-Along, 4th Quarter 2016

I'm just going to list one project for my Q4 Finish-along goal: my king size Maple Leaf quilt.

maple quilt blocks

This is a phone pic from 2 weeks ago and this whole thing is all sewn together as of last night, 49 blocks and 84" square. I'm planning and still cutting out the 6" border around all 4 sides. I have backing fabric, I hope enough but I'm not sure. I need to order batting. And probably more basting pins.

Last time I made a quilt this big, I basted batting into the middle third of the quilt, quilted that, then hand basted batting onto one of the sides, quilted it, and then finished the final third. I'm not sure how I'll proceed this time but I'm sure I'll figure it out.

I've been almost exclusively working on this for the last few weeks (had to sew some Girl Scout and Boy Scout badges...) and it has made my sewing much less stressful than when I have several projects I'm thinking about and switching between. In the next little bit I'll also be sewing a special dress for my kiddo and altering a thrifted skirt I got for myself, but no other quilting projects until this one is done.


Friday, September 23, 2016

Blogger's Quilt Festival--Tone it Down

I wasn't quite sure if I wanted to participate in the Blogger's Quilt Festival because my blog has been so neglected lately. I started out 2016 planning to participate in the Finish-Along all year, but in February we started the process of deciding and then buying a home and that took up a lot of my time and energy (such an understatement) for 4 or 5 months. We have been in the new (to us) house for almost 3 months, school has started, and things are calming down.

I decided to go ahead and post about my tone-it-down quilt for my BQF entry, in the Large Quilts category.

#apqquiltalong finished quilt

I finished this just about a year ago and it is still one of my favorite quilts. It's on my daughter's bed and I still think about making another one. As soon as I clear out my WIP pile somewhat. I think this pattern would look really good with a background of just 5 or 6 subtle variations of off white, or pale pink.

A couple of attribution details:
*Pattern is from American Patchwork and Quilting and was the quiltalong pattern for 2014. Search #apqquiltalong to see more.
*My color choices were inspired by this quilt by Svetlana/SOTAK Handmade.


You can read more about this quilt here.

Many thanks to Amy for hosting the Blogger's Quilt Festival! Please go visit the festival and check out all the amazing work quilters have been sharing this time around.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Finish Along: 2016 Q2 Goals

Rhonda's [Quilt] Ramblings


During the first quarter of the year, I finished two projects on my finish-along list--the purple and gold jellyroll race quilt, and the My Small World quilt.

So here are my Q2 finish-along goals:
Three of these were also on my Q1 list. Clockwise from the top left they are my scrappy pillow, Alabama Chanin skirt, my Weekender bag, and disappearing 9-patch quilt. The Weekender has been intimidating me for a while, and I need to just do it. I need to buy cord for the piping, the zipper, and a solid fabric for the handles and maybe the bottom panel of the bag. I have been wanting to make a Sew Together bag but feeling like I ought to finish this Weekender first. I can do it!

Additionally, I'm also planning to work on:
Finish all the 12" leaf blocks for my leaf quilt
2 more orange leaves. #modernmaples
I started this quilt back in September. I got the idea for the scrappy blocks from Lynn at K&S Design Girls. I'm planning on making 25 of the 12" maple blocks and alternating them checkerboard style with off-white blocks. With a few small leaves for fun. I have 16 of the leaf blocks done and hope to finish the remaining 9 and most of the background blocks by the end of June.

I'm also continuing to work on my hand pieced trip around the world quilt top. Hopefully I will blog about some of these projects over the next few weeks as I get things done!

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Finished Quilt: My Small World

I finished!

finished My Small World

My Small World--quilt pattern by Jen Kingwell, this one made and quilted by me. 53"x33".

This was a big project. I started sewing it in May 2015 and finished it earlier this week. I kept track of my quilting time--8 hours and 25 minutes of machine quilting, and 95 minutes of hand quilting. The orange peel blocks and the two appliqued circles in section 2 are the only parts that I hand quilted.
My Small World detail3

The back of the quilt is made of mostly fat eighths of a Momo fabric bundle I bought a while back.
My Small World Back


Overall, I'm happy with it. I'm also tired of it and maybe will be more enthusiastic about it after some time not working on it or having it in my list of ongoing projects. There are a few places where I don't love my fabric choices and also a couple parts of the quilting that didn't come out as well as I'd hoped.

But. I love a lot about it. I like the sky and the green background on the left side. I love how section 5 turned out. (All rainbows and sunny with the hexagons, dresden block, rainbow, and New York Beauty.) I'm very happy with almost all of the machine quilting. I feel like I learned and improved my needle turned applique skills. And I improved my fabric selection over time as I made the different sections of the quilt. Scale and value are really important when working on such small pieces.

Just so you know, the only place where I didn't follow the pattern is the 4"x2" heart in section 2. I made that heart back in the year 2001 when I was just a baby quilter. It was an extra leftover from my flag/star mini quilt, which was probably my first mini quilt ever. 

Most of the binding pieces are from my binding scrap rolls. I cut 2 new pieces for binding the sky section.
I'm so happy to have this quilt done, and I'm planning on getting it up on my front room wall really soon. 


This quilt is one of two items I completed from my Q1 Finish-Along blog post. It feels good to get long term projects finished!

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

My Small World--Finished Quilt Top

I finished my My Small World quilt top!

finished mysmallworld quilt top

I started this project back in May last year. It's been fun to work on, and challenging. Choosing colors and making the applique portions in part 5 have been the hardest parts. There are a few color/fabric choices I don't really love, but overall I am really happy to be to this part of the project.

A few tips for anybody thinking of making this quilt: follow along with the hashtag on Instagram--#mysmallworldqal and/or #mysmallworldqal2. There are people there who have done blog posts with details for completing each section. Sarah at Sew What, Sherlock, has free paper piecing templates she'll pass on if you send her a ransom photo of you with the pattern. I don't know how it's even possible to do the New York Beauty block in section 5 without them, so thank you, Sarah!

I made the pinwheels, quarter-square triangles, churn dashes, and flying geese using traditional piecing methods and good old quilt math, rather than make templates for every size of square, rectangle, or triangle. I did use the pattern templates for the hourglass rectangle/triangle blocks, the orange peel applique blocks, the circles, the rainbow, the Dresden, the little doors, and the scallops. I found a website and printed my own 1/2" hexagons on cardstock.

When I appliqued the hexagon section to the background, I used a water soluble marker to draw the semicircle pattern onto my pieced hexie chunk, then pinned it in place. I turned the edges under as I sewed it to the background, and then cut out the backing behind it and trimmed the bulky hexagon excess. I had thought about staystitching and trimming it before appliqueing it, but the way it did it worked ok.

Pattern info: the pattern is by Jen Kingwell and is available here. The finished quilt top is around 33" x 53".

I'm taking a little break from this project but soon I'll be figuring out the back and getting it ready to quilt. If anyone has any questions I'd be happy to answer in the comments.