Saturday, May 21, 2016

My New Bed Quilt!

This weekend I have returned to working on the new quilt for our Cal King bed. Needing to stay off my feet it seems a good way to do that while I await a fabric order for newly wed grandson's wedding quilt.
 I was anxious to see how my grey and gold blocks would look once sewn together, so I have made up a set of two of the gold and two grey fabrics, there are 5 gray and 5 gold fabrics in all, the fabric on the very bottom is backing and I decided not to use the pin dot on the very top of the stack.
I have only completed about twenty of the 48 blocks that will comprise the body of the quilt which will cover the top of the bed, then a gray fabric will go around three sides to make it fit the CK bed. These four are the busiest of all the fabrics and each block will be separated by a narrow white sashing. I have not yet decided on the gray fabric for the frame around the quilt, I thought I would prefer to wait until the blocks are all constructed and then choose the coordinate. This quilt will be very similar to the one I made for son and DIL's wedding last year.
Below is the black gingko fabric for grandson's quilt, it has been in my stash a few years awaiting a special purpose. I had purchased everything on the bolt when it was on sale at 35th.Ave Sew 'N Vac and I am using the white on white gingko version in my own new quilt as you can see above.
The photo does not do it justice, it is a gorgeous fabric.
 Rather than use a plain white which seemed a bit boring, I chose the fabric below which I think has just enough design without being too fussy.
To be safe I am calculating 8 yards of each though I doubt it will take that much, probably around  seven, but it's always good to have black and white fabrics in the stash. I am very excited to see how they will go together in the chevron.
The quilt is to be the same design as this one I made in gray and white a few years ago, also for a wedding gift,  and it should go together fast.
One of the quickest ways to get all the HST's made for the chevron is to employ the "four at a time method", however there is also an "eight at a time" method but I find that accuracy suffers when you get that ambitious!
Choose a square of each color [mine will be somewhere between 10" and12" I have yet decided how large I want the HST's] and place right sides together.
  Sew around the outside edges.......
slice diagonally twice.......
press open and trim off those pesky corner bits............
 and voila, c'est magnifique, there is your chevron! Too easy, right?
You can find handy charts online for calculating the size of the square needed to produce the required HST size, in my case I am wanting a larger HST hence the larger square.
 The rest of the fabric I need for the chevron quilt should be delivered around mid week and until then I can work on my own quilt!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Daisy's Quilt

A sweet pink quilt for a new baby at church, I like to make quilts to welcome the newest members.
 There was an annoying stack of 2.5" pink strips left from a long ago project, and with the addition of some other small pink bits unsuitable for any other than a scrap quilt I was able to construct a perfect size baby quilt, about 40" square.
 The thread is So Fine from Superior and their Bottom Line thread for the bobbin.
A freehand feathery sort of design adds a nice feminine touch with just the right amount of quilting to leave it baby soft and cuddly. Batting is the delightful new Quilter's Dream Pink, a soft blend of 80% Dream Cotton and 20% Pink Poly.
In addition, Wes's quilt is all bound and ready for him to collect when he visits from Aus. next month.
 I do hope that he is traveling light, this quilt is very large- and heavy!
I am linking up with Heather at "Needlework Tuesday".

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Cathy's Anniversary Quilt

Cathy told me to "have fun" with this quilt leaving all the options open. 
I love piano key borders and prefer to use straight line fourth inch outline quilting that contrasts nicely with something fancier in the sashing.
I chose a medium/light blue thread and Quilter's Dream Select batting. The body of the quilt  has a feathery freehand design, I knew no matter the thread the quilting would not show up well there and indeed much of the time it was most difficult to see where I had already quilted
 In hindsight I would have been better off with one of two other options and I will endeavor to keep that in mind next time I have a similar challenge!
I might have quilted the center of the quilt from the back [which is a tone on tone medium blue] or I could have chosen to use a pantograph or Circle Lord design, either of which would have removed the issue of thread blend on the busy fabrics.
It looks in this picture as if the back is even more challenging to see the stitching but in fact under the machines overhead lights it is actually much clearer.
I am a little handicapped at the moment by a stress fracture of my heel and I am wearing one of those compression boots, great clumsy things they are too, so I think I will do a bit of piecing this week. I was able to use my nice ergonomic saddle stool at the long arm machine for some of the quilting, it rolls around fairly easily and has adjustable height.
Linking up with "Needle work Tuesday"

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Happy Scrappy Haunted Houses!

Linking up a little late with "Needlework Tuesday"
This is Angela's version of Bonnie Hunter's Happy Scrappy Houses, I added the "haunted" because of the fabrics used, Halloween theme as you can see!
I wanted to quilt something a bit happy scrappy and wonky rather than some more traditional design and settled on spiders and their webs!
 It is quite hard to see on the front, no matter what color thread I used it would not show.
 However it does show a little better on the back which is half the girls and half a creepy green scarecrow figure. I think it turned out very cute............
I wonder where Angela found the sexy girl Halloween fabric? I have never before seen the like, though I must admit I do not go looking for Halloween fabrics. Angela is keeping this one so I hope she enjoys the spidery webs!
As I took it off the longarm the Boy was watching always wanting to "help".
He grabbed it from me when the last pin came out and wrapped himself up in it! 
Can I keep it Grandnanna? It's my favorite! 
Does this mean I will be making him quilt #7?! Halloween fabrics anyone..........?
Yesterday was 100 degrees + here in Phoenix and the first swim of the season - you can tell it was a joyous occasion !

Sunday, May 1, 2016

The Great Australian Bakery

Last week I visited this terrific cafe/bakery in downtown Scottsdale AZ. with my Aussie friend Sue.
Such a treat it feels like a visit DownUnder, the food is true blue fair dinkum Aussie, I wanted one of everything! Owner Lawrence knows what he is doing and I am hoping he will soon expand the menu to include some lamb pies and cream buns!
However after a chicken/avocado/cheese pie and oh yeah the best cappuccino outside of Aus, I was unable to tackle further gastronomical choices but I did bring home a huge apple turnover with cream- and the cream is real deal whipped on the premises, none of this spray can stuff! I really enjoyed it later for afternoon tea!
Their pastry is amazing exactly like the absolute best you can get DownUnder and everything is super fresh.
The custard slices look wonderful, that's for next time and it will be soon! 
Or maybe a lammington, that's a "lammo" in 'Strine and the great people at the bakery will even add cream and jam to the middle, oh my!
 I was so inspired by all of this that I did a little Aussie baking myself yesterday for a get together with friends who came over last night for a "ladies night".
Sausage rolls, mini ones and there are a few left over that may be dinner tonight if my family do not come by first, for sure grandson #1 will be here! Last night I sent text messages to sons and grandsons "half a pavlova left and a few sausage rolls, first come first served no take-aways!" Within seconds GS#1 texted back "I will be there in the morning"!
Here is the left over pav, there are four generous servings still, the plate is a huge serving platter, but I expect it to all be gone by this evening!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Angela's Allietare

While Angela was enjoying beach time I have been working  assiduously
at  the longarm machine to quilt her 2015 Bonnie Hunter Winter Mystery and here it is in all of its glory
Quilted freehand with peacock feathers and gold thread, Quilter's Dream Select batting, it does not closely resemble my version of Allietare [see previous post] the color choices alone set them apart. It is interesting how a simple color change can effect the look of a quilt then my added borders make them seem like different designs 
Linking up with Heather at "Needlework Tuesday"

Thursday, April 14, 2016

My Allietare Is Quilted!

Whew, those five borders took a while but it's all done!
 The main body of the quilt is Circle Lord Swirls......
 the narrow borders are rope design..........
the piano key border is straight line quilted a fourth inch from the seams.........
 and the large dark blue border is feathered.
The quilting always shows so nicely on the back. I took a workshop today on Photo editing at the Apple store and hope my pics will be nicer with more definition in the future!
The binding will have to wait until my shoulder is more healed, operating the longarm isn't a big problem my A-1 machine is very light, but hefting that kingsize quilt around on the domestic machine for binding would tax my shoulder too much -I think the quilt measures about 103"x 117".
I am hoping my nephew can take the quilt back to Australia with him after his visit to the USA in June because I do not want to mail it. First I would need to get an insurance appraisal for replacement value and then it is likely duty would be imposed in Australia even though it is a gift - that has happened before and it was quite a shock! Postage would be close to $200 in addition to the appraisal, another reason not to mail it!
I am linking up with Heather at "Needlework Tuesday", a little late!

Sunday, April 10, 2016

A Wedding And A Birthday!

A very busy weekend, no quilting but maybe this afternoon if I have the energy!
Oldest grandson Daniel wed his ladylove Ashlee on Friday evening in a lovely, casual poolside ceremony.
So sweetly in love, may they always be so.
My grandson is a gentleman, no mashing food on your new bride's face in spite of onlookers encouragement to do so!!
Saturday I was up early to finish prepping the backyard for the seven year old's birthday party. Friday we had done the heaviest part and I planted 56 annuals around the center garden that the birthday boy had helped me buy earlier in the week, carefully choosing the right colors!
I made an ice cream cake, topped with some of the boy's favorite Oreos, whipped cream and sprinkles of course!
Not very beautiful but he's seven years old, it included his favorite dessert choices and he loved it and that's what counts! 
 Nana and Papa brought him an Angry Birds pinata, this was obviously the party theme.
Matthew has loved the Angry Birds game since he was a toddler!
 After all the candy was gone it made a new kind of hat!
Then later outside to play with his friends, here are four of them loaded onto a groaning car, wheels rubbing on the fenders with double occupancy! We are blessed to live on a quiet little cul-de-sac where the children play, under adult supervision of course.
Finally he has a chance to drive, vroom vroom!
They had a wonderful time also riding around on bikes and scooters in the greenbelt , altogether a very successful day!
Back to quilting this week, hoping to accomplish quite a lot.