Blogger’s Quilt Festival: Daisy Chain Finished!

I am pleased to welcome you to my baby quilt entry for the Blogger’s Quilt Festival! This quilt is another oldie but goody… I started it in Afghanistan in March 2011 or so, and was pieced using my Featherweight (you can see it in the bottom right corner in the photo below). This design is “Daisy Chain” from “Jelly Roll Quilts” by Pam & Nicky Lintott. This is the throw size, sans border.  I think the fabric was Lily and Will – the pink version.

Daisy Chain

I longarm quilted it this summer.  You too can have me finish up long overdue WiPs as part of Quilts Actually.

Daisy Chain

The binding and backing is by now looking familiar if you see my work.  When I started quilting I bought this brown fabric as backing formy first quilt.  I bought way too much and it has been used in two quilt backs, and three bindings so far.  I say so far because there is more fabric left.  Luckily it works with a wide variety of my quilts!  The back is mostly flannel – the pink houndstooth you see below.

Daisy Chain

This was once again finished during camper quilting.  My featherweight and I can do great things together while my husband watches the baby.  It is quilted with a light pink thread in a heart panto design.

Daisy Chain

The colors are most accurate in this rolled up shot – it is such a sweet baby quilt.

Daisy Chain

Linked to: Blogger’s Quilt Festival Fall 2013 and Finish it up Friday!


Pandora’s Box is finally finished!

Sometimes my WiPs get out of hand… as in taking years to finish a simple baby quilt.

I began this quilt top in Afghanistan in December of 2010.  It’s been awhile!  The design is “Pandora’s Box” from “Jelly Roll Quilts” by Pam & Nicky Lintott.  My version is half size and I left off the border.

Finished Pandora's Box

I quilted this in mid-July 2013.

I put the binding on this weekend.  As in late August 2013.  Thank goodness for camper quilting.  My featherweight and I are going to put an end to my stack of unfinished quilts.  Or at least that’s the plan.

Finished Pandora's Box

The quilting is an allover square design to keep the quilt boyish.  

Blue and Brown on longarm 2

The backing is a brown flannel with blue and white polkadots.  The resulting quilt has a nice weight to it, but still moves easily and isn’t too stiff.  

Finished Pandora's Box

Linking up to Craft Buds Craft Book Month 2013 and Finish it up Friday.


Craft Book Month

Em’s Out to Sea Quilt

From the moment I found out I was pregnant, I knew I wanted to create a quilt for my baby.  I suppose it’s the sickness all quilters have – any excuse to make a quilt is justifiable.  Once I knew I was having a girl, the desire only increased.  My only problem was that I was actually creatively stifled by the multitude of options and all the different designs I wanted to create.  

Once I found the “Out to Sea” fabric by Sarah Jane, I knew that was going to be the basis for the quilt and future nursery.  The pirate girls at the center of each block are from that series.  Some of the inspiration fabrics I pulled are shown below: 

Still, I debated on what design to use.  I finally decided on a blue and grey log cabin based quilt inspired by this quilt and this quilt and this quilt.  The colors I used for the grey were too dark for the low contrast that is very popular right now, but follows the feel of what low contrast is trying to achieve.  I chose the blue and grey because I want this quilt to be something she can enjoy for a long time, even when she is past the phase every girl goes through of loving pink.  This is feminine and pink without screaming 6-year old girl (or at least the pink-obsessed 6 year old girl that I was).  

I started this quilt over Christmas when we took a weekend holiday to the mountains of North Carolina.  We had rented a house on an old mill pond that overlooked a waterfall and I started cutting and sewing on my travel machine – my old faithful featherweight.  Unfortunately, in my pregnancy muddled state I mis-cut and mis-sewed and ended up with 1 log cabin and 11 courthouse step blocks.  At least all 12 blocks had the colors based on the log cabin design so only a quilter who looks closely can probably notice the mistake.  The design was purposely done to have each round get larger as I worked toward the outside of the block as you can see below.  The shade of grey and blue also got darker as I worked outward.  

I managed to finish the quilt top days before my due date.  Due to my odd assortment of blocks, I couldn’t arrange it in the way I had originally planned, so I changed it to a more random arrangement seen below.  It then sat for months as I realized how little sewing time I had once a baby was in my life.  Her short naps are used for things like eating lunch and hygiene, rarely to craft for me.  

After I emerged from the first few months of motherhood, I realized that I needed to do something for me sometimes to maintain my sanity and connections to the outside adult world.  Quilting has been that thing for me before, and is that that thing again.  I started on the quilt back.  I seriously considered just buying some fabric to fill the back, but decided to shop in my stash.  I started with the thought to use slightly wonky stars on one side of the map print, with the boat print below.  That sketch can actually be seen in the first photo of the inspirational fabrics.

Once I had the star parts, I realized that I would have to trim them down more than expected to 2.5 inches.  Then, I had my moment of inspiration – I would fill in the remainder of the back with patchwork.  I cut out 2.5 inch squares from the leftover fabric from the front.  I cut out 5 inch squares from other fabric in my stash that matched or was already in the quilt for the rest.  The pink border was done to separate the 2.5 inch and 5 inch sections because the seams would not intersect properly due to the map in the middle that was not a variable of 2.5 inches.

Next came the decision on the quilting to finish this off.  I’ve already chosen the bright pink solid as the binding.  For quilting I didn’t want to do anything to emphasize the log cabins because then it would look funny on the back.  I think an all-over design is called for due to the busy nature of both the front and back.  I was considering clouds, sailboats, anchors, whales, etc to maintain the basic nautical theme.  I finally decided on a panto with anchors and sailboats, and on the longarm it went to be finished.  The finished product will be coming soon!

WiP Wednesday: February 6, 2013

I’m starting to get my sewing mojo back so to celebrate, I’m linking up to WiP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.  I’m also ridiculously pregnant so sewing keeps my mind off how uncomfortable I am.

Finished this Week:

Snuggler.  I know not every baby likes swaddling, and I already have multiple muslin blankets to use for swaddling, but when I found the patter for Lotta Jandotter’s Snuggler I couldn’t help myself and had to make it immediately.  The fabric is Echino linen, the selvage says train.  I bought it awhile ago with a purpose and now love it for baby accessories although since it is true linen, I can’t use it for anything that will actually touch the baby.  I used flannel for the inside because it is too warm in North Carolina (even in winter) to use the fleece called for in the pattern.

Lotta Jandotter Snuggler

Baby Dress.  Continuing on a baby theme, I made the Little Geranium pattern in 0-3 months.  The pattern is by Made by Rae, and was a fantastic pattern considering I have never made a piece of clothing before in my entire life.  The fabric is from the Lisette collection at JoAnn’s Fabric and is a “voile”.  I am definitely going to buy the full pattern and be making more of these in the future.

Little Geranium Dress (0-3 months)

Out to Sea Quilt Top.  This started as a improv log cabin, but I’m blaming pregnancy brain on it turning into a bizarre cross between the coloring of a log cabin and the pattern of courthouse steps.  It’s not exactly what I pictured, but I’m still pleased with how it turned out.  Now to do a back for it….

Out to Sea Quilt Top

In progress:

Quick Change Trousers from Anna Marie Horner’s “Handmade Beginnings”.  Pants are next on my to do list as I teach myself how to make clothes.

Quilt Backs.  As I opened my closet where I store finished quilt tops, I realized that I have five quilt tops that don’t have backs ready for quilting.  I plan to start dedicating more of my time to improving my quilting skills, so I need to get these backs done ASAP.

Up next:

Headbands.  I have a horrible fear that my baby girl will have no hair, so I want at least a couple headbands ready to go.

Out to Sea Quilt Back.  Must…finish…quilt back… so I can quilt this! This quilt back is also my February task for “A Lovely Year of Finishes” over at Bittersweet Designs.

Charity quilts.  I have one ready to be quilted, and fabric set aside for three more.  I have baby on the brain though, so it is hard for me to concentrate on non-baby projects.

Baby!  This little girl’s due date is today, so hopefully she will be making an appearance soon.

Finish along, 1st quarter 2013

This year involves a lot of changes: a new baby, quitting my job, moving…. The list goes on and on.  However this year I am going to harness my nervous energy from stress and harness it creatively.  I did this two years ago and sewed every day and it really helped to keep me balanced.  I don’t know if it is realistic as a first time mom to sew everyday, but I think 3-4 days a week should be a reasonable goal.  My current WiPs are mostly baby related due to the new addition, and are all several months old.  When I first found out I was pregnant, I started a lot of projects, but didn’t follow through to finish them.  Now having a deadline is serving as sufficient motivation to finish them up.  For public accountability, I am linking up to the 2013 Finish-A-Long with Leanne at “She can Quilt”.

1.  Bibs

2.  Boppy covers

3.  Soft book(s).  More options are still folded fabric.
4.  Baby quilt.  12 blocks started, slowly chugging away at them.  
5.  4 charity quilts

6.  Join a quilt guild

Broadening my horizon with Jelly Rolls

Jelly Rolls.  I have always admired these small bundles of fabric set in small stack around the local quilt shop.  However, they have also always scared me. 
I am a control freak when it comes to colors, patterns and textures.  That’s why I have issues with the scrappy look.  I admire scrappy looks created by others, but have difficult letting go to accomplish it myself. 

My first quilts have all been very carefully planned and executed.  The idea of letting go of that control is scary!  What if I don’t like one of the strips?  What if I need one more strip than came with the roll? 
Then, I deployed to Afghanistan.  My regular stash is on a bookshelf in the US.  I needed a new way to sew that required minimal cutting because my big, beautiful self-healing mat is also in the US.  That is when I discovered jelly rolls – the pre-coordinated, pre-cuts that I now adore.  They force me to leave my tightly controlled comfort zone.  They force me to attempt the scrappy look, to give up control. 
I admit my first effort was a blue and brown baby blanket, so I didn’t go too far out of my comfort zone.  It’s a start though.  This is my first little push in a new color direction.  The fabric is the blue version of Lilly and Will. 

This quilt is “Pandora’s Box” from “Jelly Roll Quilts.”  I only made it half size because I wanted to use it as a baby blanket.  It assembles super fast, and is a quick and easy project that would look good in a wide variety of fabric choices.  The directions were very easy to follow, and even included instructions on which direction to press the seams.  Little things like that make this quilt a no-brainer to piece.  I would recommend this as a good beginner quilt pattern.