Saturday, July 19, 2014

One of these is not like the other

A finish from the Always Bee Learning Bee, a group "effort" in this case. I chose the block from the book "Modern Blocks" compiled by Susanne Woods. This group is about learning new and perfecting existing quilting skills, literally "Always Learning", and I would like to thank  everyone for their contributions, so Thank you: Kristina, Megan, Michonne, Leanne, Toni, Hettie, Marci, Mary, Debbie, Celeste, Shanna, Elizabeth. Most of the group tackled  and completed 2 blocks, and you can see how lovely they are all together. The blocks arrived in their quarter sections, and I further mixed them together to get the scrappy of scrappiest layouts.
Quilt front
 The lovely ladies of this talented Bee used their stash for the colorful bits. I provided the background material. I was piecing the top during my economy block phase and added these to the sashed grid and corners. A few blocks even made it onto the back, as the top was already completed when they arrived.
Front, close-up

The Details:
"One of these blocks is not like the others"
Can you find it?? And yes, I did that on purpose.

73 x 73" square
Collaborative effort, the Always Bee Learning Bee, 2013-2014 season.

Quilt layout/sashing and back design- me. Block from: "Modern Blocks" compiled by Susanne Woods
Fabric: 100% quilting cotton bits and pieces from my Bee-mates; background Sketch in black and white, Kona cotton solids in medium gray, coal and charcoal.
Thread: (for piecing and quilting) Aurifil #2021, 2625, 2605
Batting: Hobbs Heirloom cotton
Quilt back: Main block plus left over economy blocks that didn't make it onto the front. Bits and pieces left from the sashing.
Quilt, back

The blocks look different with sashing between the quadrants instead of just around the blocks.

Binding: cut 2" straight of grain- Kumari Garden holiday edition
Sashing detail with binding

Quilting: FMQ on a domestic Bernina machine: random zig zag quilting in the background, avoiding all the colorful geese. FMQ scallops and fish scales in the sashing.
Perfect! (that's 2 different quilts and one girl)….. Bliss!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Backtracking on Keeping Track

So, I loved hearing from all of you on how you keep track, or not, of your creations. It was fun to read your comments - Thank you, thank you.
I learned and I realized that I am not alone.
It was hard to pick just one "I wish I had thought of that" comment, so I let the random number generator pick a winner……

So, Melissa- I know how to get ahold of you. But if you see this, you won!!!

Here is the link back to the post for anyone who wants to read the comments. I learned a few things about all of you. Thank you for sharing honestly!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

June Blocks and the Lock, Stock and Barrel

June has been busy- not like May busy, but a good busy …. I'm back teaching at Fabricate Boulder, and enjoying all my various Bees and other creative endeavors. Here is what happened in June.

Jane Austen Bee and Book Club: Lyanna's month, and the last month of the Bee,  and we're making a churn dasher block

Haven @ do.good stitches: scrappy vines block with lots of denim essex linen

Always Bee Learning: Celeste's month and we made Bonnie Hunters boxy star block

Birthday Bandy swap: for Kelli
zip clutch,w/ removable handle,  flower pin, Zakka inspired "pencil" pouch 
matchstick quilting, inset improv curved piecing, matching threads, natural linen
improved pieced removable handle
"Lobsta" care package for my niece who moved into her first apartment in Maine. 2 dish towels and 2 pot holders, among other things.

Berthoud Outdoor Quilt show- June 21st at Finkle Park. The weather cooperated nicely and the quilts were beautiful.
That's my Remi taking a close-up for me.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Fifty shades of Grayson

Graduation from College is a big deal. This past May a dear friend of ours son, who we have know since he was 18 moths old graduated from college. (I'm not even commenting on how old that makes me feel).

To commemorate this occasion I made him an adult sized quilt, since his days of twin extra long beds is now officially over.  (This was also the last of the quilts made for May events). It has taken a bit to get it properly photographed (it's big and doesn't fit on my usual photography place- my fence), hence the delay. Quilts of this size are a several person photo shoot effort. Thank you to Norine (@fivebaht on Instagram) and Leslie and her husband Sam for their help.
Front: photo by Norine Amato (fivebahtelephants)

"Fade into Gray"- a college graduation quilt for Grayson. (I debated the name for some time. Initially I thought of the post title, 50 shades of Gray, but perhaps that might be a bit too risqué ). Instead I went with something comfortable and descriptive.
Dimensions: 100" x 87"
Fabrics:Solids: Kona snow; Prints all 100% cotton: Quilters Linen Print dots in crimson, Saltwater Sea stripes Aqua, Timeless Treasures Sketch in gray, Riley Blake Honeycomb Reversed dot white/gray, Cats, Bats and Vats Stripe orange, Riley Blake honeycomb dot gray/white, Pretty special Chevron gray, Zig Zag chevron charcoal, Wallflowers Vine gray, Moda weave texture pumpkin, Riley Blake Superheros dots blue, Michael Miller Dino Roars Stitch in green, Botanics Striped etchings ash, Herringbone tonal Gray, Moda shades of black joking around, Jazz jam keyboard gray; and other assorted grays from my stash.
Thread: Aurifil #2021 (off-white) for the piecing and the quilting. I used a TREMENDOUS amount of thread in this quilt, nearly an entire cone of thread, that's 6,490 yards, 19,470 feet or for those of you using the metric system, 5900 meters of thread.
stitching detail, front

Batting: Warm and Natural 100% cotton
Quilting: Modified Bernina stitch #4 used in overall coverage. The wavy lines mimic the improv curved piecing.
Binding- I wanted the binding to blend into the quilt top so I used the same Kona snow as the background. The binding is skinny, cut with 2" strips instead of the typical 2.5".
Back: pieced from top left overs and a darker selection of fabrics, to be complimentary but distinct from the front. Either side can be the "top" although the back has the label.
Original design, 2014.
Back, photo by Norine Amato (fivebahtelephants)
It was an incredibly windy day but I had lots of help!

Grayson had a hand in picking the non-gray colors for his quilt. He did this without knowing a quilt was coming his way. I'd send him random questions via text in which he had to answer with a color choice. He might have wondered at the time what they were all about, but he answered each one in a timely manner.
The graduate and his quilt at his graduation party.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Keeping track

How do you? Keep track that is.

When making a quilt or a tote or piece of clothing. Do you finish then jot stuff down? Or do you obsessively keep track while creating?
courtesy of google images

Do you sketch or use quilting software that helps you keep track?

 Do you put all the details in your quilt label? Do you label at all??

Are you always successful or do you shoot for getting most stuff recorded, but not sweating the details- just in case you don't?

I can honestly say I'm inconsistent. Some quilts, I start off keeping details of everything, thread, fabric, batting etc, etc,  but invariably get sidetracked designing, modifying etc. On others, I just back track. Most time, unless I have recently purchased the fabric, which fabric I used is lost; I just don't have a head for remembering fabric designers, so I've quit trying, except when I can say for sure.

I did recently create a  design form which has spaces to add details that I really should be recording when I'm creating. I should keep these on my cutting table. I should!  I made them a few months ago. I haven't used them yet. I resolve to do better, but always with the knowledge that does anyone (besides myself and perhaps the recipient) really care?

That being said, I'd love to know what you do- please share your secrets- good bad or otherwise. I'll pick one suggestion from the bunch and send you a little something for your idea. For everyone else,  I will  happily share my design form if you would like a copy. I'll just need a way to get it to you (so no reply bloggers will be out of luck). Perhaps you will be better at documenting your creations than I am!!

I'm looking forward to hearing from all of you. Perhaps what you do will motivate me to document-as-I-go. 

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Canvas a winner

Congratulations to Emily…..
You will love you new pattern which will be sent to you by the author herself.
Look for something from Leanne soon!!!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Canvas, a giveaway

It was an honor in May to test a pattern for Leanne at She Can Quilt. This pattern is called Canvas, and  Leanne has offered me one copy to give away.
(photograph used with permission)
There are so very many ways to combine the 8 fabrics- and the pattern comes in sizes from a mug rug to all kinds of awesome bed sized quilts. (Pictured is a pillow size test block finishing at 20 x 20").
One lucky winner chosen from comments on this blog will get their own copy of Leanne's pattern. For all the rest of you, I suggest,  go get the pattern and give it a try- the possibilities are endless.

For really spectacular finished projects go to Leanne's blog and check out her work. You can also follow her on Instagram @shecanquilt. (You can follow me too if you like @spontaneousthreads).

Comments close on June 21st. A winner will be chosen at random. Make sure I can find you if  you are the winner. No-reply bloggers will miss out on all the fun. Good luck!!!

My take on Leanne's pattern. Solids and prints with a solid black background!