Tickled Pink….

This weeks Paper Piecing Monday block is the second in my snowball series….

Spikey SnowballI am loving the shape of these blocks and I must admit I may do more than I originally scheduled… this block is adapted from a pattern that came with my EQ program.  It has quite a few little bits, and takes 80 fabric scraps to make!

Snowball block partsSo if you would like to give it a try you can find the free PDF pattern here…Pink ball 2.

Tune in next Monday for another pink snowball block, and another bad pun!

How do you solve a problem like….

Scraps…bits of left over fabrics?  As you can tell from my blocks and quilts I fully embrace scraps and scrap quilting.  I revel in fat quarters and 1/8th yard cuts…but sometimes it all gets a little too much.

I hit critical point about two weeks ago when I could not find a fat quarter of fabric, that I knew I had.  My scrap bins were over flowing and my fabric had invaded every room in the house.  This was the trigger point to start trying to get things under control…and my first step was to grab all the little bits and pieces of solid fabrics I had to try and wrangle them into a manageable form.

solid fabric scrapsI ironed them and then set about cutting the pieces into squares….

my block sizesI settled on 3, 4 and 5 inch squares.  For each scrap piece I start cutting 5 inch squares (if the piece is big enough) and cut as many as I can from the scrap.  I then cut what is left into either 3 or 4 inch squares.    At the end of my first round of cutting I had this nice stash of 5 inch squares…

my 5 inch block collectionThe little strips and bits I have left over I would usually just throw but I have been bagging them up and keeping them for another project that I am working.

small scrapsI selected the size of my blocks after much consideration.  I chose 5 inch blocks because I use this size regularly, particularly when I am doing quick wonky star quilts.  The 4 inch blocks I find handy for making half square triangles and the 3 inch blocks are a size that is called for all the time when making Bee blocks.

After all my good cutting work I put some of the 3 inch squares to use to make my husband this….

creeper pillowYep I made him a Creeper pillow.    I used Slightly Off Quilter’s free quilt pattern for this pillow… LINK.  This is actually the first in a series of Minecraft** pillows I will be making for my darling husband…all using the 3 inch solid fabric squares.

pillow detail The pillow finishes at 20 inches square and I used a cheap and cheerful IKEA pillow form.  I did use a high loft batting (extra plush) to quilt the top, to make up for the less puff pillow form.

Now it is back to ironing and cutting and cleaning.  I need to get some sort of order restored to the house… if you need me I will be in the spare room tackling my other scraps…

** Minecraft is a computer game that involves exploring, mining,  gathering resources, crafting, and combat. There are no goals as such and players are free to explore the world and do what they want.

In the pink….

This week I am starting on a new paper piecing adventure.   It will not be a long one, but hopefully it will be fun.  The coming series of blocks is inspired by the impending arrival of a friends baby…

free paper piece patternYep they are having a girl…I wanted to do a quick, scrappy fun quilt for them using snowball blocks.    I have designed five 12 inch blocks for this quilt and for a change, I have an idea of what the final quilt will look like!

quilt block parts

This first block takes 48 pieces of fabric to make and as you can tell I full embraced the novelty print and pretty pink.  Just so that it did not get to sweet and girly I added some dinosaurs just for good measure!  You can find the free PDF pattern here….Pink ball one

I hope you will indulge me and my love of pink over the following few weeks as I work to get this quilt done!

The last green star for a while…

So I have decided this will be the last green star for a spell…but do not despair I will be back next week with a new colour scheme and paper piecing pattern… but till then I give you my Inner Star…

8 inch paper pieced starThis cute little number uses the same basic star shape as last week but with some tweaks to the pattern…and is a more manageable 32 pieces…

quilt partsYou can find the free PDF pattern here…Inner Star PP Pattern.


A little quilt showcase

I thought I would take the opportunity to share with the wider world some of the amazing Charity Quilts that the Portland Modern Quilting Guild has produced this month.  For those of you who follow me, you know that I am a pretty active charity quilter and I organize our guild’s charity sewing.  I am constantly amazed at the generosity and talent of our guild when it comes to our program….

Some Guild members donate orphan blocks that we make up into quilts.  Our wonderful Guild president this year, Elsa, donated the blocks that made this beauty….

green star quilt topElsa donated ten blocks which were sewn into a top by me, and then quilted by Coleen of The Quilted Thistle.  Photos do not do Coleen’s quilting justice, it is beautiful.

quilting detailOh and did I mention the little hedgehog?

star detailI used the tenth donated block in the back of the quilt…

back of green yellow star quiltOther guild members donate fully completed quilt tops to us… Sam Hunter of Hunter Design Studio donated the top and back for this beautiful quilt….

sams quiltand another guild member Gail Weiss free motioned quilted all over it, to great effect…

sam's quilt detailOne or two of the quilts we donate each month start life at our Charity Sew Day, which are held at our local quilt store Modern Domestic.  Once a month we invade MD’s class room space and whip up blocks which in turn are made into quilts…

rainbow improv quiltI love this improv rainbow quilt top.  All the blocks were made at the Charity Sew Day in January by guild members including Mary Ann, Kim, Debbie, Dawn, Michelle, and Elsa.    The top was then quilted by the fabulous Dawn Graf-Thiessen, another one of the Guild’s talented long armers.

rainbow improv detail

The fabric for these blocks is from scraps that were also donated to the Charity Sew program.  When I receive a donation of scraps I sort them into colours (each colour has its own shoe box).  What is left over is put into a catch-all box of multi coloured scraps…

improv quilt..and some of those scraps were used to make blocks for this bright improv quilt.  In November last year I asked Guild members to make a 12 inch square bright improv block, if they wanted, which would then be used in a Charity quilt.  This top was the end result…

Improv quilt detailBright loud and fun this quilt is definitely going to make some kid very happy…  The top was quilted by last years Guild president, MaryAnn.  She did a great job free motion quilting on her home machine.

The last quilt I want to share is a simple quiet baby quilt…

low volume charity quiltThis top was made during a Charity Sew Day by guild member Anne.  She took some precut squares that had been donated to the program and made a disappearing nine patch block.  On Sew days I always pack some precut or orphan blocks so that people who do not necessarily want to make the block of the month can play.

low volume detail

Another guild member, Emily, free motioned this darling pattern all over the quilt using her home machine.  The sweet pattern works so well on this low volume quilt.

I would like the thank all the PMQG guild members who every month help our charity program in ways big and small…either by donating fabric or blocks or their time and talent.  We could not do it without you.  Thank you.

Paper Piecing Monday…

Another Monday another paper piecing pattern… I am eventually going to run out of ideas I am sure, but until then I give you…

modern scrap star quilt blockThe Sunny Star, another 8 inch block.  This is a cute one and was pretty easy to put together (no really strange angles) and takes just 40 pieces of fabric.

quilt block partsYou can find free paper piecing pattern, in PDF form, here…Sunny star pattern.