Friday, December 30, 2016

End of the Year Wrap Up

It has been a great year! So let's start with the stash report. I didn't do as good as I was hoping, but I am please that there was more going out than coming in.  A lot of the fabric this year was solids for the custom quilting I did.  And I just ordered 54 yards at the end of this month.  At least I am in good shape starting out the new year.

Dec In  97.25
Dec Out  52.5

YTD In  571
YTD Out  619
Net Change  48

I made 70 quilts, 3 wall hangings, 10 pillows, 6 placemats and a table runner this year.  I participated in 5 quilt-a-longs and tested 7 patterns for Myra at Busy Hands Quilts. My goals were to make 36 quilts (20 of them from the bin).  I reached part of my goal in making the quilts, but I didn't get into the bin enough this year. I've had a lot of fun quilting this year!

42 quilts - These are my regular yearly quilts. I love making these lap quilts.  11 of these had fabrics that came out of my "bin".  I hope I can get into that more next year and get that fabric used up.


9 customer quilts - Special requests that came from my etsy shop some are not pictured because they are duplicates.

19 minecraft quilts - These also came from my shop.  I offered custom block choices and 4 sizes of quilts. I think my customers enjoyed having choices with these quilts. This was fun, but a lot of work! Here is just  a few of them.

Goals for 2017

1. Make 40 quilts again this year.
2. Get better at some new quilting designs and venture out into free motion quilting.
3. Use the stash as much as possible.  Have a net change of more than 48 yards.

 I know there are big changes coming in my personal life, so I hope to get as much time to sew as I did this year. I am thankful for all that I was able to do this year and for my quilty friends online.

Happy New Year to all of you!

Pink Chunky Race Quilt

 49.5 x 59.5

The first chunky race quilt is finished! Jasmine, who came up with the Chunky Race Quilt, tells you about her quilt here. I had so much fun quilting this one.  But no laughing, it was my first try at some of these different designs. I picked 10 different designs and quilted them on a specific color.  I made a huge mistake and put my newest design on the yellow. It should have been on a purple so it wouldn't stand out.  

 Apparently quilting ribbons are harder than they look.  I think it might have been easier if they weren't 4 inches tall.  This was my first one, but it wasn't my worst.  These did not improve as I traveled down the quilt.  I need way more practice on this one!

These l's were supposed to be much fatter. I started getting wider on a different strip.

Love this design, but I don't know what it is called.  My new favorite!

I think I saw these circles that remind me of e's on Jasmines Chunky Race Quilt. They also need more practice.

I wasn't really sure how to start the ribbons.  But below you can see I love e's and l's.  They were one if the easy designs.

Some fatter l's and some circles.  I really need practice traveling over a line that has been quilted already. There are some bad back tracking designs on the maroon that didn't show up well in the photos.

I used all the leftover fabric on the back.  Normally this would have been my favorite part of the quilt, but I loved the quilting on the front so much it wins!  You can find the directions for making this quilt top here.  It takes less than 2 hours.  It makes a great charity quilt or just one for practicing some new to you quilting designs. I hope you'll give it a try.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Orange and Blue Baby Quilt

40 x 42 

My son helped make this cute baby boy quilt.  He started with the white polka dot print and added in the oranges, blues, and browns.  We went over his fabric selections and made a few changes.  Hew sewed the entire center of the quilt.  I added the borders and finished it for him.

I love the back of this one.  I got a wild idea to flip the strip over since I had to add the brown down the center to make it wide enough.  I think it gives it a touch of whimsy!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Placemats and Table Runner

This set was a gift for a friend that I made a while ago. I had a bit of Miss Kate leftovers from a quilt I made this summer.  Some of the pieces were very small so I used them in the table runner.

The placemats are 15" circles.  The tutorial can be found here. The pattern calls for 9 - 5" squares for each placemat. Be careful not to pull the binding as you are sewing it around the placemat as it will pull the mat up on the edges.

That is the last of the Christmas sewing (but was really the first I did). I hope to make more homemade gifts next year.

Chunky Race Quilts

When I saw Jasmine's Chunky Race Quilt, I knew I needed to make some to practice my quilting. Here are my first two.

She gave great directions on how to make a chart like this on graph paper.  I followed her instructions and made mine and then drew it in excel so I could have a chart that wasn't in pieces.  I wanted my quilt to be a bit bigger so I used 10 fat quarters and cut 49 pieces.  The only way to get the quilt taller was to add a row after strip piecing the quilt because this method produces an even number of rows. My quilt finishes at 49.5 by 59.5. If you want to follow Jasmine's way but want my bigger size,  use this chart. If you want to skip laying out on a design wall jump to the Chunky Race Quilt directions below  my quilt top.

The first two quilts I made took a while to get all the pieces on the design wall. It was more time than I wanted to spend to get to the fun part of practicing my quilting.  So I came up with a way to skip this step and still have a great layout with the colors spread out. The entire top from cutting to sewing can be done in less than 2 hours.

Here is the third one I made to test out the new faster directions. This is my order of fabrics 1 to 10 starting on the left.  I put similar colors together so they would be separated in the quilt.

49.5 x 59.5


This quilt is sewn in a similar method to the Jelly Roll Race Quilt.  You will need to make your pile of strips before you start sewing.

10 Fat Quarters - Cut 5 pieces 4" x 18"

1. Set fabrics in order from 1 to 10.

2. Layout pieces in a STACK  in order according to the chart below. First column is piece number, second column is fabric number. So start with fabric 6, then put fabric 1 on top of that, then fabric 8, then fabric 6, then fabric 9 until you reach the last one.

3. Set pieces 47 to 49 aside for later.

4. Cut piece 1 to 9" long. Remember that piece number 1 is on the bottom of the stack.

5. Take your stack and sew pieces 1 to 46 in order end to end. Iron seams open.

6. Bring bottom of the strip to the top, right sides together, with bottom piece on top. Sew along the right side. Trim end.

7. Bring bottom of the strip to the top, right sides together, with bottom piece on top. Sew along the right side. Trim end.

8. Bring bottom of the stip to the top, right sides together, with bottom piece on top.  Sew along the left side. (Do this by turning the piece over and sewing down the right side.) Trim end.

9. Bring bottom of strip to top, right sides together, with bottom piece on top. Sew along the right side. Trim end.

10. Sew pieces 47 to 49 together end to end.  Iron seams open.

11. Add 47-49 strip to top of quilt. (18-17-16-15 is top)

12. Iron all long seams open.

13. Trim top row along edge of quilt.  (You may wish to trim half inch off this side.)

14. Have fun quilting!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Best of 2016

It's time to reflect on the past year and celebrate some of our best quilts of 2016!  Here are my 5 favorite.

1. Rainbow Bargello - My favorite quilt of the year won Viewer's Choice at this fall's Blogger's Quilt Festival. I was so excited because it was my first time to win something! 

2. Charming Plus Quilt - I do love a scrappy quilt!  One of my favorites because it uses little fabric pieces from a lot of past quilts.  Lots of memories in this one.

3. Yellow and Gray Patchwork - Also a scrappy quilt, this one used yellow, gray and black quilts.  Yellow is probably my favorite color to mix with black and gray,  I made several yellow and gray quilts this year, but this was my favorite.

 4. Minecraft - This is on the list because we were blessed with provision with these quilts.  I made 19 minecraft quilts of different sizes this year and sold them in my etsy shop. It was a family project. The kids were laying out blocks and my husband helped with ironing. I am thankful the Lord provided this kind of work for me.

5. Country Floral -   Just so you don't think all I make is quilts with bold colors, I add this soft pink quilt to my favorites.  It was my favorite country floral quilt from this year.  I really do love working with all colors.

Honorable Mention

6. Postcard from Sweden - I couldn't just pick 5! I've made 2 of these quilts because I didn't have the bright colors I wanted the first time around.  So glad I did because this quilt is beautiful! Myra is hosting a quilt-a-long in this pattern in the coming new year. You can the quilt-a-long at Busy Hands Quilts. I hope you'll join in the fun.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Custom Granny Square Patch

60 x 70 

I am doing a happy dance because this was my last custom order from my shop!  It has been a busy couple weeks and I am ready to take a break and do some baking.  I used Myra's Granny Square Patch pattern in the large lap size.  I added a 1 inch black border and changed the outer border to gray instead of black.

It's quilted with  gray thread that is almost impossible to see when quilting because it matches so well.  I hate when that happens! I added a strip to the back because the small strip was 20" wide. The perfect width for cutting yardage in half.  That's a good way not to waste fabric.

If you think this quilt looks familiar, you are right. I made one very similar in a baby quilt size.
Merry Christmas to all of you!  I hope you all have a great time visiting with family and friends.

Linking with My Quilt Infatuation, Busy Hands Quilts (friday), and Crazy Mom Quilts (friday)

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Rainbow Wall Hanging

16 x 24

This little wall hanging is the last Christmas gift I had to make.  I blocked out the top line that had her name on it. I picked 9 things that described her and printed the words out on paper.  I used a blue quilting pen that washes out to trace the words onto the fabric.  Then I quilted over the words.

So I learned that I need to figure out how to tie off on a quilt top without leaving knots.  They stand out too much with the red thread on the white fabric.  They are not too bad on a regular quilt. And when using the blue pen, I kept having to spray with water and iron over and over because I wanted the top to be flat.  I must have repeated that process 10 times.  I didn't want to saturate the quilt or wash it.  What do you use to mark your quilts?

Monday, December 19, 2016

Merry Christmas to Me!

 I received a package today with some quilty goodness!  Up first are these buttons.

 They aren't just buttons - they are coasters!  I have one by my machine holding my pop. (or do you call it soda?)

And I have one by my desk also holding my pop.  No I don't have two drink. One dose of caffeine is more than enough.

Then there were these cute bandaids...I really hope I don't have to use them!

Some cute magnets I placed on my longarm.  I thought I had them in the right order, but clearly I need more caffeine.

I saved the best for last!  A new rainbow quilt for my art wall...

I did some rearranging to get everything on the wall.  Isn't it just lovely?

What a thoughtful, delightful, and colorful gift!  Thank you, Myra! 

Christmas Gifts

I was asked to make a couple tshirt memory pillows by a friend of mine.   She already had some made and found she was a couple pillow short for her family Christmas. She wanted them quilted, so I did some straight line stitching on the front.

I really love the navy pillow because I had enough of the shirt to use on the back.

Becca asked me to make an apron for her friend. I used this tutorial here.  Considering I don't like to sew things other than quilts, this apron went together pretty easily. I wish I had gathered a little more, but she said slightly and I did slightly.  

It might have looked more flattering if I had gathered more.  Good thing it's for a skinny girl!

I am getting close to having all my sewing and quilting done for Christmas...

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Custom Heart Quilt

78 x 64

This was a custom quilt order from my etsy shop. I designed this quilt in excel like I did on the last one I designed. It took 7 tries to get it just right. The first 3 only had 11 fabrics and she decided to add one more to the stack. Then it was a matter of getting the colors spaced out just right.

It is getting cold and windy today, so sorry for the big feet in the photos. It's going to be in the 20's tomorrow so getting the pictures done today was a must! Hope you are staying warm!

Linking with Busy Hands Quilts, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, and Crazy Mom Quilts.
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