Simply Style + Simply Color = New Quilt Top

Last week I was able to get back to work on my quilt top using Vanessa of V and Co’s upcoming fabric line, Simply Style. When I first started cutting, I decided I wanted to work in fabrics from her previous line as well, Simply Color. I went ahead and bought a layer cake and I’m glad I did – the two lines coordinate really well together.

Once I had all my equilateral triangles pieced and cut, I started laying them out and completely changed my mind as to the quilt I was going to make. Does that ever happen to you?

I just love how these blocks look like diamonds – or hexagons – depending on the viewer.

So here is a peek. I’ve now finished the quilt top…can’t wait to share it with you soon!

Starfall II

Starfall II

Don’t worry, I didn’t just whip this quilt up in the last few days. (You probably figured that out based on the weather in the photo here.) Last December, I had the great opportunity to make a new, larger version and pattern of my baby Starfall quilt for Modern Quilts Unlimited, Spring 2013 issue. (See the bottom of my Publications page for pattern errata.)

I originally made this quilt for the class I co-taught at the Sewing Summit – Shapes and Angles. This quilt was an example of what you can make using the Partial Seams technique. (Speaking of…I do plan on *finally* putting up a tutorial for partial seams very soon.)

Starfall II

I fell in love, hard, with Denyse Schmidt’s Chicopee collection last year. So much so, that I made this second quilt out of the same fabrics. I mixed in a few fabrics from her DS Quilts Collections from JoAnns and one perfect green print from Anna Maria Horner’s Good Folks collection.

Starfall II

The background is all various shades of neutral fabrics, from Free Spirit Designer Solids and Moda Bella Solids.

Starfall II

The finished quilt measure 60″ x 72″ and I quilted it with straight lines, 1/2″ apart. As usual, that took awhile but was more than worth it in the end.

Starfall in Modern Quilts Unlimited Spring 2013

I definitely recommend picking up the magazine – not just for my quilt but for all the others inside. It’s full of beautiful patterns by all sorts of names you will probably recognize (Rossie Hutchinson, Patty Sloniger, Patty Young, Elizabeth Dackson, Victoria Findlay Wolfe and many others) and a great article about Negative Space by Jacquie Gehring.

Starfall II

I believe subscribers already should have their copies, and you will be able to find it at shops soon (if not already).

Aye Aye Captain!

Aye Aye Captain Quilt

One of the fun things about living with a 3 or 4 year old is their always-going imagination. My son has been in a pirate phase for months. He walks around with a cup on his foot (his peg leg), his finger curled like a hook and he’s even given himself a couple pirate names. Depending on the day, you can call him either Captain Willypanels or Captain Root Beard. That’s why when I saw Sarah Jane Studios fabric line Out to Sea, I knew it would make a perfect quilt for him.

Aye Aye Captain Quilt

This quilt was really easy to make. I combined several of the Out to Sea prints with other coordinating fabrics from my stash. These include some of Moda’s Mono Pez, Lizzy House’s Pearl Bracelets, Sarah Jane’s Children at Play, and Aneela Hoey’s Little Apples. I think one of the keys to making a quilt that really pops is using different shades of each color. As you can see, there are several obviously different shades of blue. But also, the yellows and reds are different. The prints with the white background give your eye a place to rest.

Aye Aye Captain Quilt

I cut each rectangle 3″ x 10″ and the quilt has 6 columns and 24 rows, for a total of 144 rectangles. The finished size is 57″ x 60″.

Aye Aye Captain Quilt

I had a definite picture in my head when I started this quilt, and that vision included rounded corners. I found a circular picture frame in my house that was just the right size, and used that as a template to cut the corners. It’s such a nice detail that softens the look of all those rectangles. Just don’t forget to use bias binding when you make something with round edges, or your finished product won’t lay flat.

Aye Aye Captain Quilt

I also knew I wanted to quilt with wavy lines. It gives a nice texture and reminds me of the ocean which is perfect for this quilt. I’ve mentioned this technique before, but as a refresher, I use the Running Stitch on my machine (Bernina stitch #4) and max out the width and set the length to 4.0. I use my walking foot while quilting.

Aye Aye Captain Quilt

The backing is a dark navy minky, which made for messy quilting! I had to really work the carpet in my sewing room with the vacuum after I was done basting. The binding is a dot from Sarah Jane Studios Children at Play line.

Aye Aye Captain Quilt

My son loves the quilt. While I was working on it, he told me he wasn’t going to use it. I called his bluff though, and luckily I was right! It’s quite a nice feeling to know he’s spending time now cuddling under something I’ve made.

Paper Piecing, Log Cabins and New Fabric

This post is going to be all over the place. But that’s not always a bad thing, right? I’ve been busy sewing over the last couple of weeks. Not really finishing anything but making good progress.

First up, my Arkansas Traveler quilt. After lots of cutting, sewing diamonds, paper piecing those diamonds, trimming, trimming and trimming, I have 96+ blocks! It really feels like a huge milestone.

You can find a tutorial to make this block on Lee of Freshly Pieced’s site. Those of you with an eagle eye might notice my template is a little different than the one from the Summer Sampler Series. I’m trying out something new Lee came up with, less seams, but maybe a little trickier to assemble the final block, depending on how you feel about sewing together shapes other than squares.

I know I said I wasn’t going to share my final design until I was done. I guess I lied. Here’s the plan! This weekend/next week I’m hoping to finish the quilt top assembly.

As a bit of a personal reward for finishing all those components, I cut into the little pack of Liberty of London Lifestyle fabric I picked up at Quilt Con.

I knew I wanted to pair it with some Essex Linen in Natural. I thought it would look super cute as one of Anna’s Open Wide Pouches. Great pattern, as usual! I made the smallest size because I only had a 10″ zipper on hand. (I bought my metal zipper from Zip It on Etsy.)

The inside is Stamped by Ellen Luckett Baker for Kokka.

This week I also performed a little surgery on my local Modern Quilt Guild challenge quilt top. You can read up on the sadness of unmatching white fabric here.

I finished the top yesterday (happy dance!) and will share the finished quilt next week. That is a promise – it’s due Thursday!

I also have been lucky enough to receive some new fabric in the mail this week.

Windham was kind enough to send some of Lotta Jansdotter’s Glimma Canvas for me to check out. I don’t think I’ve ever worked with canvas so I’m pretty excited to try something out. They also sent a charm pack of Ride, Julia Rothman’s second collection. I seriously love the little bicycle wheels. My son has already claimed this for his own, so I’m thinking of using it in some way to make him a tote bag for the library.

I also had a very happy surprise from Moda Fabrics – three layer cakes of upcoming collections.

These are S’More Love by Eric and Julie Comstock, Simply Style by Vanessa of V and Co, and Honeysweet by Fig Tree & Co. (Seriously, I don’t know how I got so lucky!)

I decided to immediately cut into Vanessa’s fabric because, well, I think she’s pretty fun. :) I found a block in 163 Favorite Patchwork Patterns : Japanese Craft Book, an awesome book I purchased a few months ago from The Workroom in Canada.

I had some questions on Instagram about this book. It is all in Japanese. There are diagrams that help give ideas about block assembly, but there are no directions or sizes in English. If you like a challenge and are good at figuring things out, this is the book for you. I do, and really, what do you have to lose except a little bit of fabric? Keeps my old mind sharp. ;)

So anyway, I picked this cool design…

And started to layout a couple blocks…

And then something funny happened. I made these up at pretty much the exact same time Lee was writing up her post to announce her planned Bloom Bloom Pow Quilt Along with a very similar block! Yesterday morning we had a good laugh about how we must be totally on the save wave length after writing the book together. So! If you like the block, are interested in making the block, you are in luck because Lee’s about to start her quilt along and will have tutorials for you. Her block just has some great additional shading.

Phew! I hope some of you made it through all that! Next week is Spring Break here. (As I ignore the -4 degree wind chill and snow outside…) I’m not really sure if that means I’ll get more sewing done (not driving the kids all over the place) or less (more play time with the kids!). We’ll see. My newly 4 year old wants to put on a kid art show in the house, so we have big crafting plans. Very exciting! Have a great weekend everyone!