Blogger’s Quilt Festival Fall 2010

Yikes, I almost missed the Blogger’s Quilt Festival!

Barn Raising Stars

The quilt I’d like to share is one that was completed a couple of years ago for a wedding. My mom and I worked on it together, as we have on several quilts. My cousin is a firefighter, and we knew the colors of the quilt were going to be black, white and red. We found a couple of fantastic prints that fit the firefighter theme so well – one is a red firefighter badge print, and the other is a black and white Dalmatian print from Alexander Henry. I’ve found that split diagonal blocks are so much fun to work with because of the many setting options. This is a barn raising setting. It is quilted with flames, which were a lot of fun to do.

Barn Raising Stars quilting

We barely finished this quilt in time for the wedding. In fact, I think Mom was still stitching down the binding in the car on the way! This was one of our favorite quilts, and Mom commented on the way home that she felt a sense of loss that she hasn’t on any of the other quilts we’ve made and given away. We know it went to a good home, and my cousin and his wife were very appreciative of it. They have it displayed in their “fire” room which is decorated entirely with firefighter related objects.


Am I nuts?!

Jeanne, Karrie and I are talking about making a Dear Jane quilt. SERIOUSLY talking about it. I have the Dear Jane software from Electric Quilt, so I’ve been messing around with colors. I know I want to make it out of solids, and I know I want a pale, silvery gray for the background. I know the name will be Plain Jane. I know that, while I love Kona, it may be too thick to make little 4 1/2″ blocks. I checked out Connecting Threads solids (um, Hi Jeanne, guess what came in last night!) and the weight seems to be perfect, plus they have the perfect light gray. Unfortunately, while the range of colors is awesome, they don’t have the exact colors I want. Why, now that I want soft, grayed out colors, can’t I find them anywhere?

This is the look I think I’m going for:

Plain Jane 1

So, are we nuts?

You know I did, and now what do I do?

I did it. I picked out and rotated the four squares of the Christmas Cactus quilt. I WANT to be the kind of person who can let these things go, but I’m not. Thanks for your support! Now I just need to get the borders on (they’re auditioning on the floor now). I expect to finish the top today, and quilt it by next weekend.

The next potential projects include:

Category 1 – Just Quilt the Damn Thing

The First Erroneous Block That Needed to Be Rotated (And Since Has)


Baby Quilts for Little Girls that Have Little Brothers Already



Log Cabin Wall Hanging That No Longer Fits In Our House

Log Cabin Wallhanging

Challenge Project With the Error That Cannot Be Fixed Because I Have No More Fabric (But It’s Okay, I Kind of Like It This Way)

Challenge Quilt

Category 2 – I Thought I Was Finished, But…
Storm at Sea That Is Just Too Small After All of That Work, And Needs More Blocks Or a Pieced Border

Storm at Sea

Third Quilt Ever With Horribly Mismatched Seams, Which Needs Another Border (Or Two)

Bright quilt

Category 3 – Started and Abandoned

String Quilt That Just Needs Sashing

string blocks

Quilt For Work That Was Not Needed

30's Repro Blocks

Five Blocks of 12 For Our Basket BOM (I CAN count, but Rugen urped on one)

Basket Blocks

Family Star BOM – Ditto (Except the urp thing)
Family BOM Star 4 Family BOM Star 4A - Anxiety Family BOM Star 2 Family BOM Star 3 Family BOM Star 1

Category 4 – What The Hell, Start Something New

Mystery Quilt That Has Remained a Mystery Because I Screwed Up the Instructions

Mystery Quilt Fabrics

Christmas Gift That Doesn’t Even Have Fabric Pulled (It’s okay, though, because Mom is going to make this one – I just need to choose fabric and write the instructions)

Lilly's Quilt

Pat’s Hug Quilt

Here’s the Hug Quilt. We wanted it to be bright and cheerful, both because those are colors that Pat likes to work with and because the purpose of the quilt is to raise her spirits.

Pat's Hug Quilt

Everyone made a 15″ block, then we assembled them into the top. Mom and I each made one extra block and we all signed the arrow block. It’s called London Roads, but I like that it represents continuous movement. We have a few more signatures to get.

Me - London Roads

This is my other block, a pansy because it’s Pat’s favorite flower.

Me - Pansy

Mickey, all the way out in Bellingham,WA was the first to send her block. It’s called Grandmother’s Puzzle, but I made it a bit less puzzle-like when I sent her the instructions by using half square triangles.

Mickey - Grandmother's Puzzle

Of course the first finished block was Mom’s. She chose Sister’s Choice, of course.

Mom - Sister's Choice

Mom also made the last finished block. This one is called Red Cross.

Mom - Red Cross

Jean also made a Sister’s Choice block. When multiple people make blocks for the same quilt, they’re never all the same size. That’s where sashing and fudging come in, and the quilt went together really well. Jean’s was one of only three blocks that was EXACTLY 15 1/2″ square. Neither Mom nor I could claim that, either.

Jean - Sister's Choice

Karen chose the Grandma’s Favorite block. Notice that she happened to use the exact same pink fabric that Mom did in her Sister’s Choice?

Karen - Grandma's Favorite

Pat and Becky sent their blocks together. They both used the Beginner’s Delight pattern, but it was several viewings before Mom and I realized they were the same block. It’s amazing what a difference color choice makes!

Here’s Becky’s:

Becky - Beginner's Delight

And here’s Pat’s:

Pat - Beginner's Delight

Jeanne made a lovely Crown of Thorns block, although she had to take it apart a few times because the quilt gremlins kept rotating her HSTs. It became the subject of a WTF Wednesday on her blog, Grey Cat Quilts.

Jeanne - Crown of Thorns

Last but definitely not least are the other two “perfect” blocks. Lisa chose a block called either Missouri Delight or New Mexico, depending on who you ask:

Lisa - Missouri Puzzle or New Mexico

And Karrie delivered this nameless beauty:

Karrie - Unknown Name

October 2010 Stitch & Bitch

Last Saturday was a fantastic day. Although Jean was unable to be with us, everyone else stopped in for at least part of the day. We even had a new (potential) member – if we didn’t scare her away! Best of all, Pat was feeling well enough to attend and we showed her the hug quilt we had all worked on for her. Mom just finished putting the border on yesterday, so we should have it quilted and ready to present next week. I’m giving this it’s own post so I can feature photos of each block.

Pat made a hug quilt of her own for her daughter. I told you about the Christian’s Puzzle quilt – Pat finished it just before her surgery and gave it to Mom and I to quilt. I worked several words into it, like “hope,” “forgiveness,” “love,” “family,” “friends,” “remembrance,” “mother,” and across the bottom “life, gift, love, forever.” Of course Christian’s name was at the top. Pat has been able to work on hand stitching the binding, and will be giving it to her daughter soon, if she hasn’t already. It’s a wonderful quilt, and I was so happy to have been able to contribute to it.

Christian's Puzzle

It was an emotional day all around. Crazy Pat nearly made Karrie (and herself) cry when showed TWO quilts that she made from Karrie’s patterns. Pat asked no less than three times if Karrie was coming this month – now we know why! Here’s the first project, from Karrie’s Moda Bake Shop project called Blueberry Chocolate Squares:

Pat's other Karrie quilt

She also showed a fantastic variation of Karrie’s Charm Pack Quilt Along quilt:

Pat's Karrie quilt along

That’s Karrie on the left, and a moment later…

Pat and Karrie almost cry

Here’s Karrie’s version of the Charm Pack Quilt Along quilt (you can find the quilt along on Karrie’s blog, Freckled Whimsy):

Karrie & her Charm Pack quilt along quilt

Both Pat and Karrie had stacks of quilts for show and tell. Karrie has missed the last couple of Stitch & Bitches (hmmm, that doesn’t look right!) so she has an excuse. Pat is just a sewing machine (ha – I made a funny!). Here are more from both of them:

Karrie’s Crossing Paths, a project for Moda Bake Shop:

Karrie's Crossing Paths

Karrie’s Crushed Diamonds, a project for Robert Kaufman’s Swatch & Stitch using a fun new fabric called Crush. It’s a textured solid that feels really nice:

Karrie's Crushed Diamonds quilt

Front and back of Karrie’s Autumn Strings quilt (tutorial at her site). The technique is different from a regular string quilt – she made this quilt in just a couple of days!

Karrie's Autumn Strings quilt

Back of Karrie's string quilt

And here’s Pat showing her string-like quilt, based on a technique demonstrated by Jeanne two months ago:

Pat's Jeanne quilt

Speaking of Jeanne, here she’s showing off a gorgeous batik & black double wedding ring mini quilt that she gave away on her blog. Gave it away! Seriously! Check out her post to see a better photo, and see if you can spot the piece of fabric that was only used once in the entire quilt. (I found it!)

Jeanne's Mini Double Wedding Ring

We had a new guest this time, thanks to Lisa. She invited her co-worker Amy to join us, and even though Lisa wasn’t going to be here Amy braved the big, scary Stitch & Bitch (seriously, who wouldn’t be nervous about a group with that name?!). We’re so glad she came and hope she’ll be back with her machine next month. Because Lisa wasn’t going to be here, she didn’t bring “The Quilt” for show and tell, but did bring a curtain project she’s working on:

Amy's curtain

Of course, since she didn’t bring the Wow quilt, Lisa showed up anyway! Lisa was supposed to work, but it was slow so she got out early and spent a few hours with us. She’s almost finished with her Basket BOM quilt:

Lisa's basket quilt

This photo doesn’t begin to do it justice. Nearly every block as a bit of a metallic batik fabric that gives it another whole dimension. I can’t wait to see this finished! Let’s see, Mom, Mickey, Jeanne and Lisa are done or nearly done – that leaves Karen, Jean, Pat, Pat, Becky and I. Guess we’d better get moving.

Lisa also brought a top that was found by a friend when they were flipping a house. This was stuffed into a bag and left in a closet:

Lisa's friend's found quilt top

We think it was made in the early 50’s, and it’s all hand pieced. It’s just insane! The friend asked Lisa if she could finish it. I’d love to see this completed and displayed.

Lisa has also been working on a braid quilt, after seeing the technique a couple of months ago. She worked diligently on sewing all of those little strips together, but found that they weren’t staying straight. Her long columns of braids started curving – drastically. Then she did something we can all learn from: she decided to chop it up and rearrange the pieces to make it work. Instead of yet another braid quilt, she made this:

Lisa's braid quilt

Isn’t it wonderful? I love that she didn’t just toss it to the side because it wasn’t doing what it was supposed to. She worked with it to create something original. Lisa claims to be a “beginner” because she’s only been quilting about a year, but I believe her willingness to try new things and go out on a limb put her far beyond beginner status.

Okay, moving on…

Mom had two quilts for show and tell. The first is a sweet little baby wall hanging for a great-nephew:

Riley's baby quilt

They live in California and don’t use quilts, so she came up with this instead. Her other project (and I think I saved the best for last) is a Storm at Sea wallhanging for our living room:

Mom's Storm at Sea

I love how you can see movement in the quilt. When you look at it straight on, you see different patterns from when you stand to the side. It’s just fabulous!

You’ll notice that there is not a single photo of a finish from me. I’m tired of it! Next month I will have at least TWO quilts for show and tell. Obviously the Christmas Cactus is nearly finished. I have so many WIPs to choose from, who knows what the other project will be.

A spiny Christmas Cactus problem

The center of the quilt top is done… maybe. See my error X4? (if you don’t see the error, click on it to go to the Flickr page and hover your cursor over it for a note pointing out the error.)

Christmas Cactus Center

I hate the thought of taking it apart to fix it, but I also hate the idea that it’s wrong. Somebody give me a kick in the pants to either change it or let it go, otherwise I’ll never finish the thing.

Christmas Cactus

Apparently, October is a trigger for me to think about Christmas… or at least my Christmas Cactus quilt. Remember this?

Christmas Cactus

My first post about the quilt was on October 3, 2008.

I started cutting fabric on September 27, 2009 (yes, nearly a year later) and then made some serious sewing progress by my post on October 26, 2009. Mom started – and finished – her large version of it within the next two weeks or so. Mine languished.

I picked it up here and there, sewed together a couple of sets, put it down, and basically accomplished not very much. At our Stitch & Bitch on Saturday, I had nothing to show and nothing planned to sew. I grabbed the plastic shoe box of Christmas Cactus blocks, and finished off the last six sets of four. Yes – ALL 100 nine patch blocks are finished! Better yet, they’re all sewn into rows, half of the rows are sewn into quarters, and I only have to get two more quarters assembled – five rows of five blocks each – and it will be ready for borders.

Christmas Cactus in progress

I think I might actually get this done in time for Christmas 2010.

Any bets?