Quiet Stitching

Four Square Quilt Pattern : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Phew, it’s been a busy few days. I guess that’s pretty typical for the end of the school year. Lots of celebrations, travel, and soccer with some colds and allergies mixed in. I was happy to have a bit of quiet stitching time the last couple of days. Only 4 days of school left (not that I’m counting). I’m looking forward to the relaxation of summer and spending more time with my kids. They are at such fun ages (6 and 8).

Remember those tiny squares I cut a few weeks ago? Well, after I changed my mind as to how I was going to assemble the blocks – and REcut some of them – I’m finally back in business. I think I’m going to call this quilt “Four Square”. It’s inspired by a shirt I bought this year from JCrew. I really like the simple, repetitive design. It’s calming to me.

Four Square Quilt Pattern : Fresh Lemons Quilts

If possible, I do most of my sewing as chain piecing. That means my projects usually go from pieces…to more pieces…to slightly bigger pieces…to BAM! Finished blocks!

Peony : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I also just had to share this beautiful peony from my garden. I love peony season, it is just too short. I finally had enough blooms to not feel guilty about cutting a few for a vase inside. Something pretty to look at while I sew. Now I wonder, will I get this quilt top finished before school is out on Tuesday? We shall see!

Two Steps Forward…

Fabric Pull : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I’ve spent the week in a bit of a holding pattern. I have both gift quilt tops finished and have been waiting for my kids to embroider some labels for them. Only to realize I had no batting. I spent early this week on quilt backs and catching up on some other sewing commitments. Yesterday, I decided to work a bit on a quilt that I planned out just before Sewtopia.

I cut many, many tiny squares. I just love this palette, mainly inspired by Carolyn Friedlander’s fabric lines. The more I work with Carolyn’s fabrics, the more I am convinced she is a quiet design genius. The small scale and color of her prints…they just inspire me lately. There’s some Cotton + Steel basics and a few others from my stash mixed in there as well, coordinating nicely.

Fabric Pull : Fresh Lemons Quilts

So I have this block planned out (which I’ll share later), and I thought I knew how I was going to assemble it. Well, you know the old saying “two steps forward, one step back” right?

While I was mindlessly stitching away, I glanced at my sample and realized there was a better (and easier!) way to accomplish it. Sometimes I just break things down to such a small level that I fail to stand back and look at the bigger picture. I stopped everything, made a new test block, and realized that yes, this was the new and better way to go. It’s a bit discouraging to know that I wasted all my time so far. I called it a day and let myself mope, but today I’m going to go back into the sewing room and start fresh.

Oh – and I now have one kiddie quilt label finished and batting ready, so I will also be basting and maybe wrapping up a quilt today. Wish me luck!

A Finished Quilt ~ Stardust

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

I may have set a record in amount of time to make a small wall hanging, but I’ve finally finished my Stardust quilt! This quilt is a small version (9 blocks) of the Stardust quilt from Vintage Quilt Revival. Several, several months ago, my aunt asked me to make a quilt to hang on the wall in her home. She gave me some size requirements and some colors she liked – golds, yellows, teals, browns. She loves flowers and nature. I didn’t really know of a lot of fabrics that fit those particular wishes until I saw Carolyn Friedlander’s Botanics line at Fall Quilt Market. I sent her a few design ideas from my new book and she told me to surprise her. Well….surprise!

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

Normally I like to take my quilts outside for photos in natural light, but since this is a gift and I absolutely did not want it to get dirty…and outside is covered in snow, mud and sludge…I decided to duct tape the quilt to the wall in our guest room for photos. :)

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

This quilt took me some time to put together, despite it’s small size. Since I knew this quilt would hang on a wall and people would probably look at it quite closely, I really worked hard to get things just perfect. I am so happy I took the time. These may be two of the harder blocks in the book but practice certainly makes perfect.

Stardust Quilt by Fresh Lemons Quilts : Faith

I wanted the design to pop and I also wanted this quilt to hang nicely (not too loosely), so I quilted a dense meandering design with thread to match the individual fabrics. I purchased Aurifil #2132, #4182, #2835, #1148 plus used the white I always use. This meant a lot of starting and stopping. I followed Amanda Jean’s great tutorial for burying knots during quilting.

I still need to attach a hanging sleeve, but this one will be off to it’s new home in the next week!

A Busy Week

Safari Moon by Frances Newcombe for Art Gallery Fabrics : Fresh Lemons Quilts

It’s been a pretty busy (shortened) week here. The kids were off school on Monday so we went to Michigan last weekend for a bit of winter fun. My daughter took a picture of my husband and I snowshoeing (that’s Lake Michigan behind us).

Snowshoeing Lake Michigan : Fresh Lemons Quilts

When we arrived home, I had a great package in the mailbox from Art Gallery fabric designer Frances Newcombe – a bundle of fabrics from her new Safari Moon line. I am taking part of a blog hop in a month or so, and have my quilt all planned out. I was so excited in fact, that I started cutting that night. I have the quilt top about halfway pieced now and I can’t wait to show it to you soon.

Safari Moon by Frances Newcombe for Art Gallery Fabrics : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I also finished my aunt’s quilt top (pattern is the Stardust quilt from Vintage Quilt Revival). I decided I want to match the quilting thread to the individual fabrics, so I ordered a few small spools of Aurifil thread (#2132, #4182, #2835 and #1148) and will finish it up once those arrive.

Stardust quilt from Vintage Quilt Revival : Fresh Lemons Quilts

And to round out my week, yesterday I spent the entire day cleaning my sewing room and the attached guest room – closet, storage cabinets and all. I was really feeling smothered by the mess and clutter and I’m starting to feel better about the state of affairs. It’s really hard for me to be creative when I’m surrounded by chaos. I still have more to do, but it’s loads better than it was before I started. More sewing on tap today, and my little girl is home from school with what I hope is just a nasty cold. For those that live in the US, stay warm this weekend!