Friday, March 25, 2016

'Love' my table runner

Earlier this month I served on jury duty and brought along this little table runner to hand stitch the binding while I waited to be called.  Can you believe I was the very first one called for a jury?  Ah, the best laid plans....  But I did eventually get it done before the week was out.

Love table runner 15 x 39 inches
I took the lettering idea from a block in Quiltmaker's 100 blocks by Cosmo Cricket, and the paper pieced heart was an orphan block.  Don't ask me where that came from. Too many years ago!

It seems when I started quilting I felt that unless a quilt was large enough for a bed, it was essentially useless.  Can't remember how many times I rolled my eyes at even the idea of making a wall hanging as I thumbed through quilting magazines.

How times have changed!  Now I have more bed sized quilts than I will probably ever need (even in frozen Minnesota,) and have gradually worked my way down from making queen size... to lap size... to wall hangings... to (gasp!) table runners and even a few doll/miniature quilts.  I still need to create and make quilts, but just can't justify making more than a couple large quilts each year.  And those are often now gifted to family members (who don't live at my house!)  But, I'm finding these smaller quilts to be quick and fun to make.

Has your quilting changed over time too?

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Great Blue Heron

Recently a package arrived in the mail from Vicki Welsh at Field Trips in Fiber.  If you haven't already seen the marvelous hand died fabrics she creates you are really missing out!  She is keeping her blog readers on task this year finishing up UFO's, and has a monthly drawing as an incentive.  Surprise!  Last month I was the winner!

Great Blue Heron runner
19.5 x 46.5 inches 
She graciously sent me two pieces of her lovely gradient fabrics so I could try out this table runner idea that had been stirring around in my head since last summer.  Don't you just love the result?

I have to admit it was just about the easiest table runner ever!  One 13-inch WOF strip of Vicki's gradient fabric with a silhouette from some clip art.  A 1.5-inch inner border of black Kona cotton was next, then a 3-inch border of turquoise batik and binding with the black Kona cotton.  Easy Peasy!

It gave me the opportunity to try out some creative quilting.  Believe it or not, I just used my walking foot.  The lower half is quilted in wavy lines for water, there are some wispy vertical lines for reeds in the center around the heron, and the top has some looser wavy lines for sky.

Three rows of simple scallop are quilted in the border.  It is a pre-set pattern on one of my machines that I stumbled upon recently and LOVE!

Thank you so much Vicki!  The fabric was so nice to work with, and there's enough to make two more to give to a couple of charity raffles that are coming up here.  Win, Win!

Linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

This week is brought to you by the letter T

Have you been keeping up with Circa 2016, the free quilt-along from Temecula Quilt Co.?

After a weekend away from my sewing room (and my computer) it was fun to find out that this week's block was "Big T."  So appropriate!

We just got back tonight from a weekend visiting our DD and SIL who live in beautiful northern Wisconsin.  And, their last name begins with the letter 'T'!  Knowing how to make this block may come in handy for a future quilt for them.

Here are a couple tricks that helped with this block:

1) Cut from 4" x 5" scraps.  Place light and dark fabrics right-sides-together.  Cut a strip 2" x 4" and then cut that in half to make the 2-inch pieces.  Then cut the remaining piece down to a 3-inch square.

2) Press the larger HST's to the light side, and the smaller ones to the dark side.  Use the one HST that you need to cut down to the smaller size as the 'bottom' of the Big T.  Your seams will nest beautifully!

Earlier this week I finished up this little doll quilt.  Square-in-a-square.  I was having tension problems with both my sewing machines, and needed a break.  There was way too much ripping out free-motion quilting, and machine embroidery happening around here. It was just awful!  I needed something to make me smile, and piecing this from my scrap bags did the trick.

This week I'm on jury duty, and have a table runner to hand-sew binding while I wait around.  No scissors, so a pack of dental floss will come along to use as a thread cutter.  Can't wait to show you when it's finished!

Have a great week!