Everybody loves a wonky star…right….

My final finishes for 2015 and first finish of 2016 has been putting the binding on a couple of wonky star quilts.  If you follow this blog you know how much I love a wonky star, and I found during my recent health issues that I could make wonky stars without too much effort or thought (I seem to have good muscle memory for this quilt block!)….

white star quilt

What made these quilts so easy for me to make was that I used some of my huge stash of 5 inch squares and lots of scraps.  For this first quilt I grabbed a pile of blue squares and my bag of white/cream scraps and got to work.

star detail

What you can not see too well in the photos is that each center of the star is made up of improv scraps.  This is my favorite bit of the process… sewing all the little scraps together to make my own fabric.

white star detail

For all my wonky star quilts I did simple straight line quilting, but with this quilt I used a variegated thread I found in my thread box.  I kind of love how it turned out…

For my next two wonky star quilts I took some scraps of Hoffman batiks that I had been given and had some fun…

pink quilt

This is my favorite of the quilts… I love how the soft pink and blue play together….

pink quilt detail

Plus I got to play with novelty prints which makes me so happy.  The background  for the stars uses 4 different Batiks and with all these quilts the colour variation  in the background adds a nice texture to the overall quilt I think.

pink backing fabric

I got to back my pink stars with some of my favorite fabric from Michael Miller.  I love the mermaids so much…and this fabric was so perfect for the quilt it had to be used.

finished aqua baby quilt copy

For the background of this quilt I used creams/beige batiks from a Hoffman layer cake or two.  I do not use batiks much in my quilting but I love how they work as a support to the modern quilting fabrics.   For this quilt I played with batting loft and used a wool batting.

wonky star detail

The batting gives the quilt a lovely warmth and softness… it is nicely puffy.  I can see why long arm quilters would choose to use a higher loft batting, as it really does make the quilting stand out.

So there are my last and first finishes.  Very simple, very easy and kind of fun.  Each quilt finishes at 41 inches square, a perfect size for our local Pediatric Intensive Care Unit.

More finishes for 2015…

I am really really obsessed with getting some of my quilts finished this year… and I am running out of year.  So the push is on… I have recently finished up a quilt top I made for the 100 Quilts for Kids drive, but my health hindered me finishing it on time.

rainbow squares quilt

This was a fun and easy quilt to make.  I used some of the thousands of 3 inch squares I have cut over the last year or so from my scraps.  The background fabric is a grey/blue hatch fabric by Timeless Treasures.  I love how it plays against the solids.

quilting details

Came together so easily using chain piecing.  I just sat at the machine sewing a background fabric to a solid, one after another.  I had an impressive string of fabric pieces by the end of the first stage.


I kept the quilting simple, just straight lines through the background fabric.  For some reason I did not want to run stitches through the solid fabric… and I love the plaid feel this quilting added.

For the back of the quilt I found the perfect piece of Ikea fabric…

quilt back

Somehow those bathing beauties just seemed to work.  I have been hoarding this fabric for a little while and was waiting for the perfect quilt to use it with.   To finish it all off I used a selection of Kona solid greys to bind the quilt.

I spent yesterday morning at Project Linus Portland processing quilts… including this quilt.

Quilt Details:

Pattern:  Simple four patch using 3 inch squares
Fabric:  Solid scraps and Hatch in Steel by Timeless Treasures
Size:  40″ x 50″

Dinosaurs for everyone…

This week I finished up my Lizzy House Dinosaur quilt….

dinosaurs for all quilt

Over the summer I taught a wonderful group of young ladies (aged 10 – 14) how to make a quilt.  Blocks from my test run of that class are what made up this wonderfully fun quilt…

quilt detail 1

The pattern is a simple rail fence variation….

quilt detail 2

all you do is cut strips 3 inches wide by the length of the fabric (usually 42 inches long)… then you sew four of these strips together… then you cut out 10 1/2 inch blocks… easy peasy.

The highlight of this quilt is of course the dinosaurs…. oh how I love those dinosaurs….

dinosaur closeup

Oh and there is butterflies as well, of course….


A simple backing…..

quilt back

and binding using a fabulous ombre fabric I found in my stash and a couple of scraps.


And there you have it, a simple fun kids quilt….and I have another quilt done for 100 Quilts for Kids.

Quilt Details:

Name:  Dinosaurs for Everyone
Pattern:  Rail Fence
Fabric:  Lizzy House Natural Histories, Pearl Bracelets and Butterflies
Finished size:  50 x 60 inches

An interesting source of fabric

At Christmas my darling husband gave me a set of Munki Munki flannel pj’s.  Pajama giving at Christmas seems to be a very American tradition..but I have fully embraced it.  When I opened my Christmas package only one thing came to mind….this is going to make a wonderful quilt.

pjsFor those of you that are not familiar with the Munki Munki brand, their top designer was/is Heather Ross and collecting the pajama prints and using them for quilts is very popular amongst modern quilters.  This is of course what I tried to explain to the husband when he found me cutting up my pajama top.

Seriously how could I resist these darling gnomes…

fabric detailSo a flurry of fussy cutting ensued and my favorite “go to” block pattern, the wonky star, was employed….

star detailWhat was interesting about making the top in particular for me was that I used all flannel.  I had previously back several quilts in flannel…I love the soft finish particularly for baby quilts… but I had never pieced in it.

Munki quilt detailFor this top I used some flannel scraps a friend had given me and bought some more from my local quilt store… and I tried to use as much of the source pajama fabric as I could…including the sleeve and leg cuffs which were bright green.

green starMost of the flannel I used had a wrong and right side and it was at times tricky to tell which was which…. except for the Cloud 9 flannel which was beautifully thick and lush and was reversible.

sashing detailThe end result was this darling little baby quilt… and I love how soft and cuddly it is.

munki munki baby quilt

Some little quilts for a good cause…

Last week Maryann, the PMQG President, and I dropped off a collection of darling little quilts for a new Neo-natal ICU unit that has just opened up locally.

We delivered nine quilts, and know that other PMQG members dropped off more during the week.  We picked the quilts up at Modern Domestic, who kindly allowed us to use their store as a backdrop for the photos.

The quilts included a couple I had made…. including a disappearing nine patch quilt using some lovely Hoffman Batiks that Sam at Hunter Design Studios had given me.

wq nine patch quiltA lovely little strip quilt I made using a Moda Scrap bag.

wq stip quilt 2

And a simple patchwork quilt using leftover Glitz fabric from Michael Miller.  I was so excited to see how well this fabric washed up.

wq glitz quiltThe fabulous Monica Solorio-Snow made two darling quilts using her Happy Mochi Yum Yum fabric.

Mochi quilt 1

Monica very kindly did up a free PDF pattern for this quilt which she shares on her website Happy Zombie.

Mochi quilt 2There were so many different techniques used to make these little quilts… Wonky low volume crosses by Mary Ann…

low volume quilt

Fussy cut bordered squares done by Susan Paris…

square quilt

Charming nine patches by Michael Ann….

nine patch quilt

And simple patchwork.

sweet quiltNot all the quilts had labels attached so please let me know if your quilt appears in this collection, so I can credit your lovely work.

The need for these quilts will be ongoing, so I already have a couple more in the works.  If you feel inspired to make a little (36 x 36)  quilt, most hospital NICU’s take quilty donations, or you can also drop a quilt off with your local Project Linus Chapter or other blanket charity.  It really is an easy way to make a difference.

So dust off those orphan blocks, pull out that novelty print you have that you do not know what to do with… go on make a quilt…you know you want to.

A special little quilt

Last night I managed to finish one of two little quilts I have been wanting to make for a while now.  These quilts are special not just because of their lack of colour, but because of the thinking behind them.

easy modern scrap quilt

This simple little quilt is made up of a variety of 3 inch squares of white and cream tone on tone fabrics.  I was inspired to make this quilt after seeing the fabulous Molli Sparkle’s “No Value quilt“.  It was a challenge to work with just white but it was great fun.  I ended up using off white and cream to get some variation in the quilt, so the eye had something to follow.

white quilt detail

So why tiny little white quilts…  Christmas last year some friends of our suffered the heartache of having their son be still born.  It is a heart ache I can not imagine, but one that a few people I know have suffered.  There was nothing I could do at the time but cry, support and pray.   Recently I was talking to some members in our Project Linus group who told me about the little white blankets that a group had been knitting and crocheting for some local hospitals.  These tiny blankets are used to wrap a child in when it is presented to its parents to say goodbye.  The parents can then take the blanket home as a remembrance of their child.

white quilt detail 2

I do not knit but I thought that a tiny quilt would be just as useful.  So I set about making two little quilts in remembrance of my friends and their son.  As with all my quilts there is a splash of Mirror Ball and a splash of Pearl Bracelet fabric… and a huge dash of love.

white quilt detail 3

I backed this quilt with a scrap of white fabric I had and a splash Mirror Ball and bound the quilt with Michael Miller’s Couture Cotton in Cream.

quilt backing

I have one more of these quilts to bind and then they are off to do their job of bringing comfort and support.  There are a number of wonderful charities that delivery blankets/quilts to hospitals for this need, including Forever Warm in the USA,  Sands in Australia, Sands in the UK and of course your local Project Linus chapter or Neonatal  hospital.

quilt close up

On a much happier note, our friends who suffered such heartbreak last year  have just had a beautiful, healthy baby girl.  Life really is a wonderful roller coaster of a ride.

Appleville Quilt finished

I managed to finish my Appleville quilt this week… another Project Linus finish for October.    I started this quilt a week or so ago and it was a real challenge for me.

Appleville modern kids quilt

I was using a “cheater” panel for the first time and really wanted to highlight each of the individual illustrations somehow.  Once I had worked out my colour scheme and pulled some appropriate supporting fabric from my stash, the individual blocks came together easily.   My original post on the quilt was full of optimism.   Then  the struggle began for me with how to lay them out.

Appleville qulit detail

I had never worked with this much white/negative space before.  My design wall was a blessing as I moved the blocks around trying to find a flow I liked.  Once I had a layout I was happy with the real hard work began.  It was like doing a jigsaw puzzle piecing in the white Kona cotton.  The top part of the quilt took me ages to put together but by the bottom section I was an old pro.  There are even some Y seams in this sucker (another first for me).  I would love to hear from anyone who has advice, tricks or tips on doing this kind of piecing.  I know I have a lot to learn.

Appleville quilt detail

With the top all pieced I now had to fill all that negative space with quilting  First off I tried some hand quilting in red thread – I liked it but my wrist is not healed enough to handle that much hand quilting at the moment…. so unpicking number one.

Applieville quiltingThen I quilted  lines inside the blocks and tried a little free motion pebbles in the white space.  I did not like it, and again my wrist was not up to that much pushing and pulling of fabric through the machine… unpicking number 2.   In the end it was straight lines and boxes.

Appleville quilt detail 2

It does the job, but is not as beautiful as I would have liked.  I am still coming to terms with my quilting shortfalls (which is my actual quilting) and my current physical limitations (my darn left wrist).  I am chomping at the bit to do some proper free-motion quilting to build up my skills.

For the back of the quilt I used my favorite printed panel and made it the focal point.

Applieville quilt back

I think it is one of the cutest quilt backs I have done.  And it is all because of this little print.

Appleville quilt back detail

Appleville Quilt Details:

Style:  Modern free form

Fabric:  Appleville by Robert Kaufman & Kona White

Finished quilt size: 47″ x 57″