Sunday, September 7, 2014

ALYOF September Goal!

My goal for September is simple....give this Raggedy Ann doll some hair, 
finish stuffing the arms and legs, and dress her!  

Be sure to stop by Sew Bittersweet Designs or Fiber of All Sorts to 
see all the goals for the month of September.  Maybe you 
want to set your own goal!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Decisions Were Made!

My goal for August for ALYOF was to make the needed decisions and get started on hand-quilting a quilt.  I'm happy to report that I decided to baste the quilt using a long-arm machine; I decided to use Quilters Dream Cotton batting; I decided to not use a hoop; I decided to try a rocking motion quilting stitch.  And, yes, the hand quilting has begun, although it's very hard to see in the picture.  

I can tell you that my quilting will not win any awards.  Only a few stitches got lost on the back.  
It's a blessing that the stitching doesn't show up more.  The back really blends in as well.  
I will probably put this aside and pick it up again when the weather cools a bit.  Working with a quilt on your lap in summer, with no air conditioning, is, well, warm!

Be sure to check out all the finishes on either blog, Sew Bittersweet Designs or Fiber of All Sorts.

Setting a goal each month is such a fun way to get something accomplished that you've been putting off for far too long!  Why not give it a try?

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Time for a New Goal

Time for a new goal for the month of August.  (Can it really already be August?)  For the month of August, I am pulling out an unfinished project I believe I started in the spring of 2004.

I purchased a quilt pattern and some 30's fabrics from a quilt store in Texas.  Unfortunately, while I'm sure I still have the pattern, I have no idea where it is or how to give credit where credit is due.  But the quilt blocks were made Buggy-Barn-style, where you stack up several fabrics, make strategic cuts, shuffle the fabrics a bit, and then sew them all back together and trim the blocks.  

It didn't take too long to sew the blocks together.  That was the easy part!  But I always thought the quilt deserved hand-quilting.  And in order to do that, there are so many decisions......baste?  pin?  baste with a longarm?......use a hoop?  don't use a hoop?......what batting to use?....try to perfect the rocking method of hand-quilting?  just use a stabbing motion for each stitch? many things to consider!  I do have some yellow quilting thread picked out, and I know I want to quilt just inside each of the small patches.

So my goal for August is to make the decisions, get the basting done, and get at least six of the blocks quilted!  I may get more blocks quilted, but six would be a good start.  And then there will be the decision on what to quilt in the sashings.  (I think that I'm leaning toward a cable of some sort.)  I do have more of the small print I used for the cornerstones to use as the backing, and the binding will be the same yellow fabric as the sashings.

What are you working on this month?  Be sure to check out all the goals that have been posted over at Sew Bittersweet Designs and Fiber of All Sorts.  Give a word of encouragement to those who have posted goals, and consider making a goal of your own!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

July finish!

I am now seven for seven in the goals-finished category for the year!  A Lovely Year of Finishes certainly makes it easy to set goals and finish them.  My goal for July was to finish this quilt.

The quilt was completed and hung in the Greater Ann Arbor Quilt Guild's show this weekend!  I am very pleased with how cheerful the finished product is!

Time did become a crucial factor.  My original intention was to echo quilt around the appliques and do some sort of custom quilting in the nine-patch blocks.  (Yes, those are nine-patch blocks.)  However, my volunteer work for the show took a bit longer than I expected.  I put together a great deal of the show booklet, and I produced the cards that hung by each quilt.  

As I trimmed and punched holes in the cards, my good friend Pauline quilted the quilt for me.  (Wasn't able to re-make the card to give her credit there, but want to give her a shout out here!  Thank you, thank you, thank you, Pauline.  You are a fantastic friend!)  A panto that included cars and loops was the perfect quilting pattern to use.

Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of the fabric I used on the back, but it can be seen here.  It was Hot Wheel cars on a white background.  I just love this quilt.  When I started it, I was going to give it as a donation quilt to SafeHouse, but at this point it might stay in my collection.  If so, I will make another quilt as a donation quilt.

Be sure to check out all the other finishes on the Fiber of All Sorts or the Sew Bittersweet Designs blog page.  There are some really great finishes.  (Be sure to click through to number 41 -- simply fantastic!)

Sunday, July 6, 2014

A Goal for July

My goal for July for ALYOF is to complete the quilt I worked on last month.  In June I completed the stitching around the appliqued cars, and this month I will complete the quilt.

The quilt is from the book, Growing Up With Quilts, by Mimi Dietrich and Sally Schneider.  This pattern is one of Mimi Dietrich's.  In the corners, there are blocks to represent Stop signs, and then there is a final border of black-and-white 9-Patch blocks.  I have ordered some HotWheels fabric for the backing and have my red binding all ready to go.  

I started this quilt as a donation quilt to SafeHouse, through Greater Ann Arbor Quilt Guild, but I might be having second thoughts.  It's awfully cute!

Be sure to stop by Sew Bittersweet Designs or Fiber of All Sorts and check out all the other quilters who have stated goals for the month of July.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Another Goal Completed!!

Earlier this month, I set a goal, with ALYOF, to finish doing the blanket-stitch applique around 16 cars blocks.  I got a lot accomplished the first weekend, and I thought I might get the entire quilt top completed before the end of the month.  

But then other things happened.  My third grandchild, a granddaughter, Jordyn Lee, made her appearance on June 11th, and babies have a way of capturing your complete attention!  I've also been busy working on the Greater Ann Arbor Quilt Guild's quilt show which happens next month.  And then there is the five miles a day I'm walking....four miles in the morning and another mile in the evening.  That really cuts into your sewing time, but I need to keep at it!

But I am happy to say I did complete the goal.  I blanket-stitched around all 16 car blocks!

And I want to give you a sneak peak at how these blocks will be used in a quilt.

Check back in the next day or two, because my July goal will be to finish the quilt!!!!!

Be sure to stop by Sew Bittersweet Designs or Fiber of All Sorts to see everyone else's completed goals.  The year is half over.  Can you believe it???

Saturday, June 7, 2014

H2H Finished Quilts!

It's time to reveal the finished quilts I'll be donating to the Hands2Help challenge this year.  If you are unfamiliar with Hands2Help, please read all about it on Sarah Craig's blog, Confessions of Fabric Addict.  Thanks to Sarah for her efforts in organizing quilters for such worthy causes.   

The first quilt is for a girl, although I know a few grown-ups who would love to snuggle
with it as well.  It's approximately 53" x 65".

It was made from a Benartex kit with a collection of fabrics from Princess Boutique,
by Kimiko Ikeda.  The kit came with pre-cut pieces of 3"x3", 3"x6", 3"x9" and 3"x12", 
along with several suggested block designs.  I loved the fabric but just
wasn't thrilled with any of the block designs and layouts, so I cut the
fabric a bit and came up with my own blocks.

I am really pleased with the way it turned out.  I am now on the lookout for another collection
of fabric in bright colors to make another similar quilt.  I was able to find a 
multi-colored paisley-type fabric for the backing.  (And I've been trying to 
pick off that small piece of thread on the aqua fabric, but it just won't come off.)

My second quilt is using spaceship fabric from Joann's in bright, primary colors.  
It measures approximately 40" x 52".

I used a block I created that I call "X" Marks the Spot.  It's the
perfect block for focus fabric that you want to highlight.  
(Watch my blog for another quilt where I've used this block, in a larger size, 
to make a baby quilt.)

I used the same spaceship fabric for the backing, 
and I quilted it with a stars and loops design.

I've decided that both of these quilts are going to Quilts of Compassion.  The quilts
are distributed to a wide variety of folks in need.
They will be put in the mail next week.  
Be sure to check out all the Hands2Help quilts at the linky party.  

And I think I'll get started on some quilts for next year's effort early!