Archive for the ‘Quilting Design’ Category

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42.2 Making Lanyards for the Guild Show

November 24, 2017

We decided to change the way we were doing our charity project for our upcoming guild show in 2018. We used to make a quilt (or other) and put it up for silent auction to be given to the highest bidder at the end of the show. Instead we are going to make things to “buy it now” – to borrow a phrase from ebay.

Somehow, this flipped a switch in my brain to say – make boutique like items.

Also my old lanyard was starting to look gunky after several years of use, and I decided to make myself some lanyards, at least one for me, and the rest I can make for the guild for the charity portion of the show.

In the meantime, last June, at the Kansas City show, I saw the vendor Project Lydia. I had seen them before.

They are a group of ladies who make colored beads out of very thin strips (triangles) of magazine paper, and then string them into bracelets and necklaces.

From their website:

Project Lydia is an economic development project that lifts women out of the worst of poverty, restores purpose, hope, and dignity. All our paper beaded necklaces, bracelets and jewelry are made out of recycled material.

And I have put my necklace I purchased from them as my own lanyard for the time being. Sorry for the poor quality picture.

I’ll take you through how I am making these lanyards if you decide to make one of your own. I like the Project Lydia piece, but as it is beads and I use this daily, I have had a poor experience where I had a handmade beaded necklace break in the middle of the hallway when using my badge.

Next to the beaded lanyard is a strip. I start my strips for my new lanyards as 2″.

I then fold towards the middle twice. Actually one fold in the middle.

Open the strip up again, and refold to the new middle line that is just pressed in.

I then take some sort of stabilizer. I already had this with the lines on it for a project long ago abandoned.

I cut just under an inch, about 1/8 inch less than an inch, so that would make it 7/8″.

And I slip it into the middle of the opened up strip, trim it up.

I don’t honestly know exactly how necessary it is for the stabilizer. I have chosen batik fabrics for my lanyards as a good chance for the ends not to unravel.

The next part of this, I fold everything back up, press it again and sew it down. Don’t worry, I forgot to take a picture of this part so I decided to slip it under the presser foot so you could see.

And most of my lanyards are at this stage right now!

The next part of this is the tricky bit that gets rid of the cut edges from being exposed.

I unloosen some of the end stitches on each side, and open up the lanyard about half an inch. I decided to reach in with my scissors and cut just a small wedge on ONLY the inside piece.

Repeat on the other side.

I then decided to notch the front folds just a little bit to help reduce the bulk here.

Then, we turn inside out the very end tip, pushing from the back side, and then using fingers to press this all down. A spritz of water helps with this process. If you see below, there is a fold towards the inside of the very little section (maybe a fourth of an inch) of the end piece.

Definitely fiddle with this to get it flat and then sew down the edges.

How they go with the lanyard pieces.

The reason I start with 2 inch strip is that my lanyards have about a 3/4″ flat space. I purchased them on Etsy about 5 or 6 years ago. This size of strip lays flat exactly with this size of lanyard piece.

For the folding of the lanyard, I chose the best looking side to go through the lanyard piece.

Then next to the back side of the lanyard – OUTSIDE the lanyard, I place the other side, making sure the lanyard is flat all the way through the fabric portion. This is folded back toward the main part of the fabric.

The first piece is now folded over to match the previously folded piece.

Be sure to give yourself a large enough “tail” here. You want to be able to have enough space for your presser foot to be able to reach on both pieces of fabric and also NOT hit the metal portion of the lanyard.

Sew many times back and forth as this is going to have a lot of strength on it. Make sure you sew or correct the last part of the tail that was previously un-stitched by one of the previous steps. For the one in my tutorial, I made the full length of the lanyard a “little bit longer” than I normally like.

Here’s the end stitching.

This shows how it looks from the side.

I should have cut this down a little more. This was done at width of fabric from the original piece, so it started as a 40-42″piece. If I had wanted a shorter one, I would have cut it before folding in the ends. I can work with this long of lanyard just fine. I just hope someone else will like this length too.

Since most of the rest of my lanyards haven’t turned in the sides, I can rectify this for the future pieces. I think we need to get this to the proper length, also taking into account that there will be about 3-4 inches taken up by the bottom section folded over.

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42.0 Designing a quilt for the guild

November 10, 2017

Every other year our guild is making an opportunity quilt – sorta like a raffle quilt – for the guild. Our current one will be drawn for in a few more weeks.

Here is our current guild opportunity quilt that is just about out the door!

We used Tula Pink’s Modern quilt blocks in greys and blues. Bordered in green to help get the blocks to the correct size, and then grey sashing with subtly darker cornerstones. We were making these blocks from our own guild’s stash, and it turned out great because there is such variety in the colors used.

We did this with expressed permission from Tula Pink, and specific instructions for guild members with the patterns involved. Which makes sense for the designer to protect their own copyright.

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Somehow for the next opportunity quilt, we were having a guild discussion and, sorta because I through out a question or two, I sorta attached my name out there for designing/picking the next one we do as a guild.

We won’t have to have the quilt fully made until like January or February of 2019, but I am trying to think early, think ahead on this.

Something about this project was nagging me. I spent a good chunk of time looking through quilt block books, scrap quilt books, this year.

I have been spending time flipping through my quilt-block calendar.

I usually flip through this and leave it up on a block that I would like to make, like the one in the picture above.

I went through lots of designs on electric quilt 7 and just spent time thinking and thinking and planning and planning.

I printed out several different types of quilts that would be fun to do.

I had some time away from my computer and away from Electric quilt. During the times I was away, I used my book of 1000 quilt blocks, and my calendar and started sketching by hand on my moleskin, and used my good coloring pencils for some design inspirations.

A few days I couldn’t find my moleskin and I used this sketchbook to get a generic idea for other blocks.

As you can see, I like the grid work already done, everything is much better attended to.

Something about this block drawing and coloring is very soothing.

I think some of these would be nice to add into Electric Quilt and then explore some other color ranges.

I also think I zeroed in on some designs that won’t work well with a mixed group, but will work better as a non-scrappy quilt, that I am saving for myself. Tell me a better way to start and desire to make many many more quilt starts?!

I was attempting to figure out what blocks would be interesting enough that one would want to purchase a chance at, but also easy enough to have people work towards the quilt together, that will work as things with their stash.

I kept coming back to a quilt design that I had done a while ago. That I had altered a while ago. A quilt block called Aunt Sukey’s Choice.

Over and over, I saw this design and kept thinking it would work!

I was able to make one block for the quilt, and I even showed it off to the guild. A guild member had a good suggestion about the middle portion being one piece instead of four smaller pieces and reworking the white sections nearby. I like this idea and it will help simplify the quilt a bit.

I tend to work in “cool color pallets” or “warm color pallets” when doing scrappy quilts.

I ended up reworking this quilt a little bit after showing it off to the guild. The one I had shown to the guild was just blue and green alternating. I was leaning towards cool colors anyway.

But If I think of this quilt block as a sort of “nine patch”, the half square triangle sections could look just as good in reverse as they do pointed out. And alternating reverse blocks with non reverse blocks would be good design in and out and have a good direction to the the quilt.

So this is my rework of this design, which, for the moment, I am calling Sukey’s Reverse.

I am going to write up directions to the quilt, This is the same block but with different colors and a reverse section next to a non-reverse section. Nothing harder than what was already done.

I am giving myself the option to use a small amount of sashing that could fit in between blocks with dark blue cornerstones if the quilt blocks are not squared up correctly.

A suggestion has been to get members to upsize the blocks and then cut down to the correct size before putting together. Also we could assign the half square triangle blocks to someone, and the four patch blocks to someone, and we could cover the various amounts of skill needed for the quilt.

If we’re smart, we can do this out of our stash.

I kept getting told to use a block or pattern that was either free or get permission to buy the book. And depending on my pattern writing skills, my guild members may ALL agree in the end. But this is what I wanted to do from the outset, take something familiar and then make something new with it.

If this pattern is already out there and possibly popular, please let me know, but this was something I truly created from a block pattern and a good design program. I am liking the blues on all the outside blocks, and the other colors on all the inside blocks I think this will ground the quilt but also have a nice variety of colors and interest and fabrics!

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41.7 Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival KCRQF 2017 – Part 5 – Quilts Focusing on Quilting

October 9, 2017

Hi, this is part 5 of a quilt show featuring quilts from the June 2017 Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival. I have decided not to post details about the quilts but I very likely have taken the information down of the quilts in the form of pictures of the quilt tags. I have put off this online quilt show long enough and have documented the quilts that I decided to show. I wish I could be more explicit here, but I am finally getting at least some recognition of some of the quilts that I enjoyed seeing at the show. Part 1 describes some of the show itself.

This is my own category of quilts that are based a lot on the quilting patterns. Not necessarily the categories put up by the show itself. Some of the quilt pictures below may not show the quilt in the entirety as they may be blown up to show quilting designs in detail instead of the larger picture.

This next quilt most of the texture is done with quilting “tightly” back and forth in an S shape. Looking up close to this quilt, the pieces are straight, but back from this long view angle, the whole effect of the quilt is curvy.

 

Save

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39.1 Double BOM(b)

February 17, 2016

Two months in a row, I can say that I have been keeping up with the monthly pattern from Ula Lenz for 2016.

This block of the month, BOM for short, is a stained glass hexagon quilt.

So far, most of the quilt is still a mystery. The stained glass patterns we have done so far have featured stars and hexagon and diamond shapes.

This month, I have expanded my “pinks/purples/oranges” batik fabrics to help flush out some colors in the quilt for a later time.

I am doing this quilt with controlled color pallet again, but I am open to using other fabrics than the ones featured here.

february stained glass hexie

Someone commented about the white patches. They are so far, the lightest color that I have wanted to do, it seems like a lot of my bright fabrics are pretty dark, these fabrics are actually light purple in shade.

Proof that I did not just put the same photo in from last month as I did this month.

february and january blocks

This is a picture of the triangular 1 sixth of the quilt in progress after the parts were sewn to the paper and none of it was sewn down to each other yet.

one sixth of feb block

The blocks are only available during the current months. Since it’s now February, the block for January should be available for purchase only.

If you click on her link, you may have to switch to English on the website, it seems the default is German. I do this on a desktop in the top righthand corner. The actual blocks themselves, are easy to figure out, pictures make a thousand words.

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39.0 First BOM – Stained Glass

January 17, 2016

For the brand new year, I happened upon a brand new BOM that I decided to join up and work on.

I love the stained glass look for quilts, and this one just spoke to me this time.

A designer for which I know little about, lives in Europe, I have bought one of her patterns before and the quilt is on my list to do, Ula Lenz has made the Ray of Hope quilt in hexagon style.

I have already completed the first block, here are some of the pieces I was working on.

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I had a bright bag of orange, purple, pink batik scraps that I knew just “went together”. I think someone from my guild donated them to me at the last retreat a year ago. I had kept the fabrics separate from the rest of my stash, hoping to find a use for them.

I remembered seeing these fabrics recently, so I located an appropriately dark batik that I had bought to use for some purpose that matched these pretty batiks.

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I have already cut out the border fabric for these blocks, the way Ula has us do the quilt is to make sashing and fun border wonky stars in between each of the hexagon blocks.

There are many color ways that would look fantastic for this quilt. I have luckily got the first block done, so I hope that I will be able to remind myself to download her next BOM when it’s posted at the beginning of each month.

It’s free. As you can see, each of the hexagons will be done in three sub blocks, and several of them have different amounts of seams on them.

Paper piecing doesn’t scare me.

Here’s the pretty block without the border pieces.

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I hope I can keep enough of these fabrics in the quilt. I may try to find another light fabric to help with the contrast a little more on future blocks.

And here’s the block with border pieces. So now it can be sewn in square.

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38.9 Quilt Accomplishments for 2015 – the Year of Scraps

January 15, 2016

I would like to recap my 2015 quilt related accomplishments. Many of them are tops, I really did little to no Free Motion Quilting during the year of 2015. I did have three quilts quilted during the year.

Some of the blog posts I was about a month or two behind. Usually I am finding myself sewing or surfing with my extra time, or board game playing, or football watching, or video game playing, or playing solitaire on my phone, or chatting with ladies from 4 other quilting states at the big quilt show this year.

You get the picture. Distractions abound.

From the beginning of the year, I did spend a lot of my weekends quilting, even if they weren’t documented immediately afterwards.

I will try to recap my quilt life 2015, using some familiar pictures, some new.

I started off with the last round of the Twilter Round Robin quilt I was working on for Diane.

Round Robin Dianes Twilt On quilt with Darla borders

I did the last bargello style border (green to blue waves). I drafted this from graph paper. I made more work for myself than I needed to because of the multilevel greens that I added.

I completed the quilt top for fellow quilter (and also once “quilt” podcaster) who lost her husband suddenly in the fall of 2014.

Darla and Ruthanns quilt top

Looking back through my archives, I can’t believe that I forgot to blog about this quilt. It was meant as a nice surprise for Ruthann. She wanted something “green and sciencey”. I had seen this quilt in a book I got in 2014. I had emailed a bunch of other people in our group, most of which remembered Ruthann, but not all of them had.

I had a list of the strip sizes I needed, and instead of the other people sending me “completed blocks” I asked if they could send strips and/or strip sets. I was amazed at what was sent on this quilt.

And I did lots of extra work, cutting up and only using a portion of what was presewn  for me just so I could have a lot of variation on the quilt.

I completed the top in early January, and completed the finished quilt in May, after our meetup with Jackie from Sew Excited Quilts quilted this quilt (and one other) for me.

ruthann and teddy healing quilts

I had overestimated the size of making 5 full DNA strips, so the last one became a “bed runner” which was quilted separately by me at home.

In Feb, at the annual guild retreat, I finally finished my borders and my backing for my Royal Red King’s Puzzle quilt.

Royal Red Kings Puzzle Quilt Top With Borders

In March, I translated the quilting pattern from my Dancing ribbons quilt to ceramics. I need to mount this.

dahlia plate after glazing

I also finished the borders on my weave quilt after figuring out how to do the ends.

Circular ends

I brought a small quilt I had worked on a few years ago, a disappearing four patch quilt, to the lady who was quilting my Royal Red quilt. Sandy from Artfully Quilted did the honor for me for the red quilt, and also works on donation quilts for the local hospital. I was happy to donate my disappearing four patch, even though I was originally going to practice free motion quilting on it.

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I think sometime I worked on the back for the weave quilt, I didn’t finish it, but I got some pieces together for it. I usually piece my backings so I don’t buy the extra large fabrics that often. But it takes some time.

April I made some things for the quilt show, in addition to another quilt block for another quilty podcaster.

galaxy star pattern via quilters cache

5pointedpincushiontwo

I also received my fantastic Round Robin quilt back and in the squeak of time, got arrangements for this quilt to be in the regional festival. I think I was on top of the world one minute of the day, and I was crying in disappointment the other part of the day. This quilt, didn’t almost make it into the show, and I am blessed that things either worked out for it to be there, or someone gave up a spot or something else happened to allow me to have the quilt in the show. Anyhow I can only take credit for the center, some of the fabrics, and the tiny outside border.

Darlas round robin quilt finished top

May was the finish for the show, getting all these quilts ready with labels, sleeves, and everything prior to June. It was also time for me to get extra wound up for inviting some friends to Kansas City area.

May I also met with Jackie for our (now annual sorta) sewing day at her studio!

Royal Red styled on porch swing

June was our regional quilt festival, and fantastic meetup with friends and with guildmates, seeing other friends’ quilts and making new friends.

twilter meetup five twilters at barbecue

three of seven twilters entwined

In July I finalized my “watermelon dresden” pattern for myself, and worked on getting my studio organized, and set myself up for the fall of scrappy quilts.

water melon dresden version 2

string quilt small

August, I was getting myself organized and sewing all the 16 patches that eventually became my Arkansas Crossroads quilt. And getting more strings for the hashtag quilt swap.

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And I was starting to make shoo flys for the disappearing shoo fly quilt.

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I also took some time out to make a few small blocks for other small projects. These went to different quilts for different projects, but are both definitely “my” style.

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I made my hashtag blocks to be sent out to the twilter swap.

string hastag blocks to send

And received some different ones in return.

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Then the end of the year I started sewing together all the scrappy pieces I was working on in the fall.

shoo fly top as a table topper scrap quilt

I think I just blogged about unsewing and resewing my Winslow’s Corners quilt, which took up some of my November time.

Winslows Corners Quilt with good corners

I experimented but haven’t yet committed on a low contrast, but high saturation scrap chevron quilt. (still in many smaller pieces)

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One weekend I looked at all the scraps I had left over from Ruthann’s quilt in the spring and put together a different top for picnicking.

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And on Thanksgiving day, got my Watermelon Dresden quilt layout figured out with actual fabric pieces I am working on.

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Currently I am in a “small battle” (with myself) as I ran out of the background fabric needed to make the quilt. The shop that sold it to me in November, I called, and they don’t have the same fabric anymore. I am working out how to do it since I started some of the border pieces already in one fabric.

Actually, the quilt will have lots of background space due to how I set the border pieces. I figure there will be lots of room for background quilting on this quilt.

And since I am writing this in January, I will hold off on my latest quilt block project. That is actually finished – for January anyway.

Oh… and in April, just before all the mess for the quilt show started, I attempted to quilt my Samurai Sudoku quilt. But I was having a bad day, things weren’t lining up right. I haven’t yet told myself to rip out and start over on the quilting, but I almost have. I have been avoiding the longarm rental since I have to make a decision on this quilt that I will not like to make right now.

upclose picture of samurai sudoku quilt on longarm

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38.8 Winslow’s Corners quilt an Arkansas Crossroads pattern

January 12, 2016

The end of 2015 was surrounded by creating quilt tops of the “scrap” genre.

Quilts with lots of different fabrics in them, sometimes color controlled, sometimes completely random.

I readily obtain many 2.5 inch blocks by my “cut out strips” method of using fabric for projects. I know the value in 2.5 inch squares and so tend to cut squares into this shape when I have no set purpose for these squares.

 

I have posted about this top a few times already, but I did finish the top at my recent Arkansas retreat.

winslows corners quilt top backwards corners

I was trugging along, trying to get everything sewn down, I knew how I wanted the borders to match the rest of the quilt.

As you may be able to see the quilt is a simple idea.

  • Alternating 16 patches filled with all the scrappy 2.5 patches I sewn together earlier the past summer
  • Alternating x blocks made of 4 album blocks “pointed” inward together
  • Borders consisting of each piece being a “half album” block with the two corners together

Three pieces of winslows corners quilt

This is how I organize this quilt in my head when making it.

I have noticed it is starting to become “popularized” – aka I have been seeing it on some websites, or mainly the quilting group on FB as a single block, rather than 2 blocks of different styles.

winslows corners alternate quilt block

Either way works, it depends on how the maker would prefer to work on the designs.

I made my album blocks by a simple paper piecing method. Very easy to paper piece.

In fact, I would recommend this quilt to anyone who wanted to learn a little bit about paper piecing. Not too many tiny paper pieces, the quilt seems satisfying in scope when done.

In any event, while at my November retreat, I was in a rush to complete the quilt and I didn’t consider “row placement”.

I ended up with my X blocks (four album blocks) on the outside corners. All of them.

original top winlsows corners double corner

So the very corners are these silly little hour glass type things.

I finished the quilt top, but I didn’t really like the corners of my Winslow’s Corners all that much.

But then later that month, I was thinking. And thinking.

I figured out a relatively easy way to correct the corners on Winslow’s corners.

Since both edges ended up being off, if I would remove the last row on one side, move it to the other side, scooting it down some, remove both small borders.

winslows corners plan for moving last row

I had some “downtime” aka non-internet non-machine sewing time planned for the Thanksgiving holiday, I could unpick all the edges, get the quilt prepared, and then just had to do a few quick seams after black friday.

So that’s what I did, picked off one border, took a whole row including the border, scootched it over to the opposite side of the quilt.

winslows corners border removed block missing

The left over border on my “left” in the picture above is good since I removed the “offending row” and put it on the right.

And scootched it down by one block.

winslows corners close up of last row

You can see from here, I still had to pick out the extra X block, and I had to quick make an extra 16 patch block.

But only minor changes from this point and now the quilt top has much better border corners.

No funny corners on my Winslow’s Corners quilt.

Winslows Corners Quilt with good corners

Did I mention why I am calling the quilt Winslow’s Corners? My annual fall retreat is in Winslow, Arkansas. And the quilt pattern is sometimes named Arkansas Crossroads.