Friday, December 30, 2016

Oliver's RBW String Quilt is Complete!

Oliver's RBW String Quilt is complete, and given for Christmas 2016.

Happy Boy finally has his quilt!

Detail of the quilting pattern mapped out on quilt tracing paper, so that I can stitch through it, and know where to go.  The wuilt paper can then be pulled off, leaving only the stitching.  I love this no-mark method because it yields such great results for intricate designs.

Detail of the quilting from the backside.

 We were trying to get the sun to show off the stitching from the back, but didn't quite work out as planned ...  Still, it's an unusual smiling picture of OKL!

These are the quilting patterns I chose for the blocks.  
These were all used multiple times.

Batting : Hobbs 80/20 Cotton/Poly Batting.  
I love this stuff, as it gives this antique-y crinkle look after it's washed.

For the haf-square triangles, I used this design. 

And for the corners, a quarter section of a full design worked well.

 I wasn[t sure what to do with the borders for the longest time.  Finally, I took inspiration from the wooden trim edging doorways in our old house.  Simple.

A simple hand-written label, as I didn't want to wrestle with the printer and the special fabric.  

Another finished quilt for 2016!
That's 3 quilts finished, and all 3 given away this year.

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Free Taste : Baby Quilt for France

Free taste of a baby quilt-in-progress.  

We discovered that our Cousin Delphine in France had another baby in October, so a new quilt is in the works for Bebe Anatole -- to be delivered next spring / summer.

This is how far I got at Quilt Camp in November with a pack of 40 2-1/2 inch Island Batik strips.  If I used some short-cuts, and didn't follow the directions as given in the pattern, it came together rather quickly.  

Even I'm looking forward to seeing how this one develops!

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Shade Tree Quilt is Done Tied with a Fat Wool Batt

 Show and Share at Quilt Camp, Silver Birch Ranch, November 2016

Here I am explaining the Shade Tree comes from the green blocks, a batik with a curly leaf pattern on it.  This fabric reminds me of the curly willow outside our living room windows that lends such nice cool shade in summer.  
At Quilt Camp a few weeks ago, I sandwiched and enveloped this Disappearing 9-Patch Quilt with a fat woolen batting that had been taking up space in my closet.  I thought it was about time to give it a final home and put it to good use--on our bed!

I had acquired the woolen batting for  a mere $24 at a rummage sale at my local quilt guild several years ago.  That's a pretty good deal for a wool batting, even 10 years ago.   It was carded by The Courtney Woolen Mill in Appleton -- I think (hope?) they are still in business.  It turned out to be the perfect fit for this particular quilt.

For info on how to envelope and tie a quilt, see my previous post on it.  It was very helpful for me, too, as I used it as a reference when I needed to do this one. 

After the first night of Quilt Camp, I had the edges sewn, and turned the inside out, re-pinned it for temporary basting, and brought it back to the cabin to keep me warm that night.  I was grateful to have it as it was cold enough to snow that night.  Chilly!  It kept me toasty and war -- such a treat!

I've been going back and forth about whether to quilt it or tie it.  In the end, I quilted the borders, but tied the middle part after I got home.  Quilting something this thick just makes it stiff, so I opted to tie it.  It was difficult to find a matching green yarn in wool.  The green I wound up with is as close as I could get, and it's not wool.  We'll see how it wears.

Lessons learned :
The wool batting seemed easier to work with than the poly batting I used last time, as it was easier to push the tying needle through -- or maybe it was the needle itself?  This time, I purchased a long needle for making dolls--the packaging said it was great for tying quilts, so I took a chance.  It does work well!

The ties are in the cream-colored crosses and where the little back squares meet. I used a matching wool yarn so as not to take away from the quilt blocks. I did also quilt the border and edge blocks to add some stability.

Tied quilting from the back.  Nice puckers! 

Warm Winter Woolens

Up-cycled wool sweater slippers with Pear wood buttons.  

These have been on my to-do list for a couple of years.  That big bulky sweater has been taking up a lot of space in my closet / sewing room.  These days, the priority crafts seem to be using stuff up, or moving it out.  Now I have some cozy warm winter slippers, and a little more space in the closet.

For the slippers, I used this basic pattern/method.  I liked the simplicity of the crossover strip.

Lessons learned : Although the sweater had been washed and somewhat felted, it still had a lot of stretch to it.  I had traced my feet for the general pattern, but once I wrestled with sewing on the stip for the upper part, the soles became quite stretched out.  Next time, I think I would fix it to a stabilizer foot -- maybe an actually felt foot liner, or something to keep it from stretching as it did.  Or I would wash it again in really hot and agitated soapy water to get it to felt more.

As it is, they stretched enough to slip in a pair of flip flops for some extra comfort (not necessarily support).  The foam also adds a layer of insulation to keep cold floors at bay.   I used 2 layers of wool sweater for each foot.  It seemed thick as I was working with it, but it matted down, and I could have used a few more layers. 

I added some patches of shelf liner to the soles to make them non-slip.  That works really well -- Easy to cut and sew, and shelf liner is cheap at the dollar store.

I also added a little elastic around the foot openings, to mitigate some gap-o-sis and to help keep them on my feet. 

The sweater still had a lot of good and usable parts left to it, so I gave it to a crafter/quilter who can turn them into mittens.  She was happy to have it! 

The buttons are from the Sweet Leaf Wooden Stick buttons I was making last spring.  Glad to finally have a project where I can show them off!  These are the pear (fruit) wood.