Friday, February 22, 2019

OBW #2 Finished

OBW #2, now known as "Whoo's Hiding?" is complete.  I'm really happy with my quilting choices on this one.  I emphasized the central hexagon ring with straight lines in charcoal thread, then quilted continuous curves on the rest of the hexagons with lighter neutral thread, and finished off with piano keys in the ombre/bird borders.  The owl is the only bird in the original fabric panel that didn't make it, intact, into the quilt borders, but I used the entire panel for the hexagon portion, so the owls are in there.  Can you find them?


Saturday, October 6, 2018

One-Block Wonder #2 - Top is Pieced

I finished assembling the quilt top of OBW #2 today.

My original plan for the border was just to use the ombre all the way around, but I really wanted the light part to be in the middle of each border and the dark in the corners.  The fabric gradation wouldn't allow that, so I had to "stretch" the ombre to get the effect I wanted, so I used four of the remaining bird panels from the original fabric that I used for the center of the quilt, and inserted one into the middle of each border.

But I still needed to "stretch" the dark ends of the ombre into the corners.  I finally had a brain-storm and decided to try making ombre nine-patch corner blocks and it worked perfectly!

The fabric has a very subtle linear design in it, so I alternated the direction of the lines, horizontal and vertical, so the nine-patch effect shows up, but it's very subtle, almost looking like the corners are woven.  It's exactly the look I was going for. (Ignore those little yellow dots - I pinned the quilt to my design wall to take these pics.)

Once I finish quilting it, I will bind it with solid black, matching the narrow inner border.

I decided to share the pieced quilt top with you now, because it will likely be a few months before I'm able to start quilting it.  But when I do, I'll posts more pics then.

In the meantime, I have two customer quilts to make, and a Quilty-Trip coming up.  I'm going to Quilting on the Bayfront in Erie PA next week!  Can't wait!  I'll tell you all about it in my next post.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

One-Block Wonder #2

I haven't made any more progress on the quilt I shared on my last post (4 months ago - yikes!) but I had a very busy summer packed with friends, sewing, grandkids, retreats, etc. and I'm afraid that this blog fell by the wayside.
Anyway, I'm looking forward to sharing my current project with you now, still a work-in-progress.

Earlier this month, I presented a little talk/demo about One-Block Wonder Quilts at my local Quilt Guild's Semi-Annual Quilt Exhibit, and this is the quilt I started specifically for that demo.

The fabric I chose is a panel called North American Wildlife by Jody Bergsma for Robert Kaufman Fabrics.

I love all the colors in this panel, especially the pops of blue and white.

All the half-hexagons are sewn into vertical rows now and once I get all the rows sewn together I'll make a final decision on borders.  I have some fun ideas planned, but I won't commit or share until I have the center done, so check back soon.

In the meantime, here are some pictures I took while working on the blocks.  I've never had eyes in my quilt before, so this is a first!

Monday, May 28, 2018

Artisan Batiks & Grunge

I bought an Artisan Batik Charm Roll a couple of months ago, and found them to be a perfect match for a charm square pack of Grunge fabrics that I already had.  So, with no particular plan in mind, I sewed them all into blocks.

I have 4 of each of the 22 you see here, for a total of 88 blocks.  I have been playing with several layout options on EQ, but haven't made a final decision yet.

      • One large quilt, or two smaller ones...
      • With or without alternate blocks...
      • With or without sashing...
      • Straight set or on-point with setting triangles...
Hmmm...  decisions, decisions...

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Urban Oasis Companion Quilt

Wow, it's been a busy month since I last posted about my Urban Oasis quilt.  I have since completed two T-Shirt quilts for a client, but can't share them yet because they are a surprise gift for the recipient.  Don't want to spoil the surprise!

Then I put some leftover pieces from my One-Block Wonder quilt, Urban Oasis to good use.  I had just enough scraps left over to make seven additional hexagon blocks, and once I made them, I realized how perfectly they went with this hand-dyed background fabric.

I picked up a bundle of these hand dyed fabrics in various colors at MQX in Manchester NH a few years ago, and had been saving them for just the right project.  This was the one!

I see a dark, stormy sky in this quilt, so I named it "Midnight Storm at the Oasis", since it was made as a companion quilt to the original One-Block Wonder quilt called "Urban Oasis".  It is a small wall quilt and I chose to use a facing instead of a binding.

I mulled over several different quilting options (at least a dozen!) before I settled on this one.  And I'm so glad I did!  I love how the variegated King Tut thread (from Superior Threads) gives the illusion of rain over the entire quilt.  The lines are about 1/4" apart, and I stitched it on my Juki TL2010Q using a walking foot.

I am in love with the texture on this quilt!  This is the first time I've used King Tut thread, and I love the short color transition, compared to other variegated threads.  It changes color about every 1 1/2 inches or so.

So that's the end of my Oasis story.  I'm already moving forward on to more colorful quilts so stay tuned!

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Urban Oasis - OBW is Done!

It's finally finished!

I started this One-Block-Wonder nine months ago, but other projects kept taking priority, so it kept getting set aside.  (Click here to see my previous posts about this quilt.)

The quilting took a LONG time, but I am so happy with how it turned out.  I quilted the center spiral on my Juki TL-2010 using the walking foot and Glide thread in white.

Then I switched over to my APQS George sit-down longarm machine and quilted continuous curves in the remaining hexagons and straight-line piano keys in the border, using So Fine #50 thread in gray - all ruler work, so it took many many hours.  Now I wish I had kept track of my time...

After auditioning about a dozen different binding fabric options, I finally decided on this aqua ombre.  I love how it repeats the light aqua colors in the center of the quilt and adds an extra little zing.

I used Quilter's Dream Green batting in this quilt for the first time.  I LOVE LOVE this batting!  It quilts like butter, lays flat and smooth, has just the right amount of loft, and does not crease or shrink.

I've always used cotton batting, but disliked the crease left when the quilt had been folded for any length of time.  Bye Bye fold-lines!  I think this will become my new go-to batting in the future.

Of course, there will still be occasions to use cotton, but it's nice to have a choice, based on the project.  OH!  And the other great thing about this batting is that it's made from recycled plastic bottles!  I know, plastic doesn't sound appealing, but it really feels wonderful!  Trust me!

 Instead of using a piece of the original Skyline fabric on the back or a border, as many quilters do, I decided to print an image of the fabric panel on my quilt label instead.

I named this quilt Urban Oasis because the original busy city skyline fabric magically morphs into a tranquil gazing pool in the finished quilt.  It still amazes me that the entire center section of the quilt is created from just one fabric.  It's a "Wonder"alright!

Sunday, March 18, 2018

OBW - progress update

It's taking me some time, but I'm slowly getting there.  The quilting on my One Block Wonder is progressing nicely, and I'm really happy with how this is looking.

Here's a shot of a small portion of the front...

and here's the back.

For batting in this quilt, I'm using Quilters Dream Green for the first time.  So far, I'm really impressed!  It feels wonderful and quilts great!  I'm a cotton lover, and typically use Quilters Dream Cotton in all my quilts, but since I quilt on a sit-down machine, I wrestle the quilt around ALOT and the cotton tends to shed on the quilt top, leaving fuzzies all over.  That's not really a problem, because I can clean them up with a lint-roller, but this Green batting doesn't seem to shed at all.  I really think I'm going to like this stuff!  And the fact that it's made from recycled plastic bottles is wonderful too - less trash in our landfills and oceans!  Win Win!

If you'd like to learn more about Quilters Dream Batting, click here.

Now I have to set this quilt aside for a bit while we go visit our grandson and soak up some southern sunshine for a week.  I'll post lots of pictures when it's done, probably mid-April, so be sure to check back.