On a mission…

Now that I am getting back to full health I feel like I have so much to catch up on…and first thing on my To Do list is to clear some of my WIPs out of the house.  The main impetuous for the clear out is the fact that you can not currently access our spare bedroom because of the pile of batting, quilts and fabric…our spare bedroom is Charity Quilt central!  I have a wonderfully patient and understanding husband who is somewhat blind to fabric piles and quilting mess, but even he has started commenting.

So as we head to Thanksgiving I will be sharing mine and PMQG’s most recent quilt finishes before they head out to their respective charities.  To start proceedings I give you this wonderful little quilt…

wonky log cabin finished quilt copy

This quilt was made, along with a larger version, at one of the Portland Modern Quilt Guild Charity Sew days.  This was a fun day where I bought a huge box of blue scraps, a smattering of white and grey scraps and we all made log cabins.

wonky log cabin detail 2

Somewhere in the process a touch of orange was added, at the insistence of one of our amazing Guild Members Juline,  and viola you have magic.

quilt detail

The orange really makes the quilt sing.  All the improv log cabin blocks are trimmed to 12 inches finished and this four by four version of the quilt is headed to Project Linus. The larger version of this quilt (six by seven blocks) is currently out with one of our talented long-armers.

wonky log cabin quilt

When pulling blocks for this smaller version of the quilt I made sure to get some great novelty prints in the mix.

fussy cut fun

This was such a fun and easy project to do with the group, as once again there is no right or wrong, just playing with colour.   The quilt is backed with a darling Laura Ashley fabric that seemed appropriate and bound with some navy batik fabric which was kindly donated to the Guild by Hoffman fabrics.

quilt back

Thanksgiving does seem like the perfect time to share some of the amazing quilts that our Guild has made to help our community.  I am so very thankful to everyone who helps out with this program.

 

Back to School Blog Hop – Paper Piecing edition

Today it is my turn on the Back to School Blog Hop and today I wanted to talk about an under rated paper piecing tool – coloured pencils.

coloured pencils

As you can tell my pencil set is well used.  Most quilters will pull out colour pencils to colour in pattern sheets or maybe sketch out block ideas, but as a paper piecer I use mine all the time to colour code my patterns.

Not all paper piece patterns need to be colour coded… simple patterns can be easily followed without coding help…but with more complex paper piecing patterns, a splash of color can save on the unpicking and hair pulling when you are sewing a pattern.

For example this block is little complex…

Cross plus extra block

For this pattern I used EQ to play with colour placement, but coloured pencils and paper work just as well, particularly if a colouring sheet has been provided…..

lattice quilt

So before I started sewing it I pulled out my coloured pencils and scribbled away, marking the pattern with the predetermined colours I am using.

colour coding

I choose colours from my pencil box that corresponded to the coloured fabrics I was using for the block….

pencil to fabric

So that the coding made sense to me as I sewed….

block pieces

I regularly use this process for my paper piecing blocks… and will use symbols if I am using more than one type of fabric in the same colour range… remember the code just has to make sense to you…

paper piece pattern

When making my Cross Star quilt colour coding with pencils became an integral part of the quilt making process as I had to work out how each block fitted into the overall quilt pattern.

cross block wip

So next time you are paper piecing, dust off those colour pencils, do a little colouring in and make the paper piecing process a little easier.  And if you want to play with this block, I have included a colouring page in the pattern PDF… Cross Plus extra block.docx

But before then, check out the rest of the super awesome Blog Hoppers for their tips:
Sept 1: Peta Minerof-Bartos of PetaQuilts
Sept 2: Cheryl Sleboda of Muppin.com
Sept 3: Teresa Coates of Crinkle Dreams
Sept 4: Cath Hall of Wombat Quilts
Sept 5: Sam Hunter of Hunter’s Design Studio
Sept 6: Melanie McNeil of Catbird Quilt Studio
Sept 7: Mandy Leins of Mandalei Quilts 
Sept 8: Rose Hughes of Rose Hughes
Sept 9: Megan Dougherty of The Bitchy Stitcher
Sept 10: Lynn Krawczyk of Smudged Design Studio
Sept 11: Susan Beal of West Coast Crafty
Sept 12: Sarah Lawson of Sew Sweetness
Sept 13: Jane Victoria of Jolly and Delilah
Sept 14: Jemelia Hilfiger of Je’s Bend
Sept 15: Ebony Love of LoveBug Studios
Sept 16: Misty Cole of Daily Design Wall
Sept 17: Kim Lapacek of Persimon Dreams
Sept 18: Christina Cameli of A Few Scraps
Sept 19: Bill Volckening of WonkyWorld
Sept 20: Jessica Darling of Jessica Darling
Sept 21: Debbie Kleve Birkebile of Mountain Trail Quilt Treasures
Sept 22: Heather Kinion of Heather K is a Quilter
Sept 23: Michelle Freedman of Design Camp PDX
Sept 24: Kathy Mathews of Chicago Now Quilting Sewing Creation
Sept 25: Jane Shallala Davidson of Quilt Jane
Sept 27: Cristy Fincher of Purple Daisies Quilting
Sept 28: Catherine Redford of Catherine Redford
Sept 29: Amalia Teresa Parra Morusiewicz of Fun From A to Z
Sept 30: Victoria Findlay Wolfe of Victoria Findlay Wolfe Quilts
October 1: Tracy Mooney of 3LittleBrds
October 2: Trish Frankland, guest posting on Persimon Dreams
October 3: Flaun Cline of I Plead Quilty

Continuing my Lizzy House infatuation…

Last week I managed to finish up my Constellation quilt, which is currently winging its way to its new home in Indiana.

Finished Constellation quilt

I started this quilt a while ago, after I got my hands on some treasured pieces of Lizzy House’s Constellation line.  I have been a big fan of Ms. Houses for a while now…she designs the most fun novelty fabric.  I love her bright colour choices and graphic illustrations… and I do not just use them in my charity quilts for kids,  I try to sneak Pearl Bracelets into nearly every quilt I make!

constellation detail 2

I loved the blues and touch of purple of this line and it was so easy to put this quilt together using just the Constellation fabric line, some Pearl Braceletss and a few supporting solids.

constellation detail

I paper pieced the six-inch cross blocks… you can find the free pattern here.

constellation detail 3

To quilt this baby up I just used my walking foot and followed the lines of the crosses.  I love how the quilting echoes the crosses, while adding a nice grid pattern to the quilt.

constellation quilt

I wanted some denser quilting on this quilt, as it is for my new nephew, Tobias…and I knew from the experience of his big brother’s quilt, that this quilt needed to be able to stand up to pretty constant washing and hardy wear and tear.

quilt back

For the back of the quilt I used three different Lizzy House prints…two of which are from her recent Natural History range.  These fabrics just worked perfectly with the front… and I could not resist sneaking this marvelous gem print into the quilt.

fabric detail

Now I must warn you this is only one of several Lizzy House quilts I have been working on.  I am slightly addicted to Lizzy’s fabrics and am eagerly awaiting her new line, A lovely Hunt,  in September… it has unicorns in it!

Quilt Details:

Name:  Constellation Crosses
Pattern:  Paper Pieced cross blocks
Fabric:  Lizzy House Constellations
Finished size:  36 x 42 inches

Re-purposing Challenge Fabric

Last year the Modern Quilt Guild did a fabric challenge using Michael Miller fabric.  If you follow me you will have seen a few quilts with this fabric in it, including my own Challenge entry.  When our Guild handed out the fabric to its members we said that if anyone was so inclined they could use their Challenge scraps to make some blocks for the charity program.    This is one of the resulting quilts…

Michael Miller sampler

This beautiful quilt was pieced and quilted by the wonderful Cris Pera, who is this years Guild Programs Co-ordinator.

Michael Miller quilt detail 2

Cris took the Michael Miller Challenge blocks and made this darling sampler quilt… using white sashing to bring the blocks together.

Michael Miller quilt block

The blocks are all so different and there is so much amazing piecing in each block…

Michael Miller quilt detail

But I love how they all come together to make a lovely coherent quilt because they are all using the same fabric line.  There should be at least one more of these quilts finished up by the end of the year…fingers crossed!

Not just one tree in the forest…

Today I am spending the day delivering the latest batch of Portland Modern Quilt Guild charity quilts to a couple of charities around town…. so over the next couple of days I would like to share some of the beauties that are being dropped off starting with…

wonky tree quilt

Our wonderful wonky tree quilt.  Now if you have been following me for a while you will have seen a version of this quilt last year, when we made our first wonky tree charity quilt…  you can check out my original post for tips on making the blocks

Finished quilt top

This quilt block has become an annual exercise and makes for such a fun Sew Day.  Basically anything goes tree wise and this year was no different.  We had differently shaped trees…

different types of treesReally big trees…

different size trees

And really small trees….

some tiny trees

The forest is so varied and every one has a blast just making what ever type of tree they wanted… there is no right or wrong but most people kept within the 8 inch square guideline….

quilt detail

We used lots of our donated scraps, and I love this exercise in particular because it allows us to use up  some of the browns and olive greens we have in our donated charity stash… colours that are not always easy to use in kids quilts.

one of my trees

I always throw in some bright greens to the mix to add a splash of vibrancy to the forest.

To finish it all off the amazing Nancy Stovall of Just Quilting, did an awesome job.  She choose an all over pattern that hints at the wind blowing through the trees.  I love it so much.

quilting detail

For the back of the quilt one of our fabulous volunteers, Betty, made a huge tree block….

quilt back

..that was just perfect for the back.  This quilt was truly a wonderful group effect… thanks goes out to everyone who played along and helped make this wonderful forest.