Friday, February 26, 2010

Traditional Modern

A few months ago, I read about a new quilt along. I hadn't participated in one before, but this one struck me a bit differently. I've never taken a quilting class and, quite honestly, knew very little about traditional blocks when I first started quilting. I mostly just started putting fabrics together and sewing. While I'm not a traditionalist, it's nice to at least be familiar with traditional blocks. No need to reinvent the wheel type thing. I've been checking out books on quilting from the library and looking at traditional blocks for the past several months. Then I read about the modify tradition quilt along. I liked the idea of actually making several traditional blocks for a quilt.

My grandmother was recently diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and is going through chemotherapy. I had already planned to make her a quilt, so one with a bit more traditional bent seemed perfect.

I'm not precise, with anything really, so traditional blocks are quite a challenge. It just seems like a lot of no-fun work to cut fabrics to a certain size, sew, iron, trim, sew more, iron, trim again. Ugh, I guess I'm just too lazy for precise work. As I was working on this quilt, I thought I might end up hating it. Though I liked the fabrics I chose and liked them together, I liked them less in the blocks. It just didn't seem to be working. A couple of the blocks I ended up not using, because I really didn't like them at all. The nine patch just seemed really boring at a 12.5" block. After putting the blocks together, things started to improve, and I ended up loving the quilt after quilting it. Since this was a sampler quilt, I decide to make the quilting a "sampler" of sorts, each block was quilted slightly differently. I am kicking myself for not getting better photos, especially of the quilting, but you can kind of see the quilting from the back of the quilt in these photos. (I'm going to toot my own horn here, the quilting is really pretty, despite my cruddy photos. I must get better at taking photos of my quilts. I have no idea what I was doing this day. )

The backing is a pale yellow cotton, with a strip of the orange with blue dots from the front.
I doubt that I will work on a sampler quilt with traditional blocks again. This way of working just didn't fit my personality well. Of course, if I had made the blocks as the quilt along progressed, rather than one after another I might have liked it more. 

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Another bee block

Two more bee blocks for Sharon, in the style of Denise Schmidt's Drunk Love.

All caught up with bee blocks, back to my usual obsessive quilting.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Jewel Squares

Quilter Bee blocks for Theresa. Inspired by Kaffe Fassett Jewel Squares.

Striped baby for Josiah

I'm definitely keeping with the theme of simple quilts for a bit.

We learned last weekend that a couple of our good friends were adopting a baby. As in they were meeting the baby that day, and were in California. One of my first thoughts was (of course) that I needed to make something for that baby. Later I found out that they were not just in California, but near US! We hadn't seen them in three years, since we were in Alaska. I was so excited to get to see them and their brand new baby. I decided Sunday night that I MUST make a quilt for the new little boy, but I just didn't have enough in my stash for a baby boy quilt. Monday morning, I was at my local fabric store buying the fabric. By the time I went to bed that night, I had completed the quilt top and the quilting. That left me Tuesday for the binding.
(I had to include the photo with the dog's tail.)
This was definitely my fastest quilt to date. I only worked on it during the kids' nap and after they went to bed. I thought we might be seeing them Wednesday, so I needed it done fast. 

For the back, I used one print, striped binding, stipple quilting. The finished quilt size if approximately 43x62.
We did get to meet the baby last night (1 week old,) but I'm not sure how many photos the parents have shared yet. I don't want to beat them to it.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Simple Quilts

I tend to like the back of my quilts as much as the front, sometime even more. Just a hint of the design from the front, simple. After seeing this quilt a few months ago, I decided that I was going to make a couple of very simple baby quilts.

I've had a few of these sock monkey prints for awhile, but didn't really know what to do with them. Adding solids and polka dots to a simple quilt seemed a perfect fit. I started making a few blocks for each quilt.

This first quilt is for a friend of mine, due with baby boy #2 next this month.

A simple quilt still needed a bit of interest on the back.
Another view of the quilt.
And a bit of a close up of the quilting. A bit of pebble quilting for this one. I've never done any pebble quilting. I liked it for this large empty space.
This quilt is approximately 43x58.

My cousin had a baby boy (baby brother of twin boys,) um, several months ago. (I think if the baby isn't yet one, I'm still good, though. Right?) Anyway, same type blocks, different layout.
And, the polka dot back.
Another view

And, close up of the quilting. Simple stipple for this one.
This quilt is approximately 43x63.
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