Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Island Batik Ambassador Child's Play Challenge

Hi.  This month's challenge for the Island Batik Ambassadors was to use an Accuquilt GO! BOB (block on board) die to make a child size quilt.  If you haven't seen the other designs, and how you can use the dies for many different designs, please do so.  I'll link to a list at the bottom of this post. 

My die was the Spider Web, which Accuquilt provided in the second Ambassador box this year.  My first thought was that a spider web is scary and not something I would make for a child, but I played on EQ8 with the die block shape, (file shared by Gene Black) and a variety of colors and placement until I had something less scary.   I've seen others do something amazing with it, and mine is kind of basic in comparison, but I do like it.  Before I played too much, I made a test block with the die, and a few left-over 10" squares.  I did like the scrappy random colors, but there was just a little too much going on for my taste. 

When placing the blocks, you have options for the design.  I love to rotate the block until something pops.  In this case, I saw a star.  The kite shapes in the center is what caught my attention.  I decided to use that idea to color just a few stars, and then set on a size and shape.  I wanted to use some of the 60" square batting that Hobb's provided to the Ambassadors, too.  I don't often make square quilts, but this seemed like a good chance to do it. 

I picked the Petal Pushers collection of 10" Stack squares and the 2 yards of yellow and green that Island Batik also provided in the last box.  These are currently in stores, or will be soon.  I have some in my Etsy shop.  I used the yellow for the star kite shapes, and then first border, to make them pop.  I used the green apple design for the outer.  The backing is a snuggle-worthy minkee in a pale grey from JoAnne's and batting is Hobb's Tuscany cotton wool blend (80/20).  The wool and the minkee helped to make the quilting design look really good. 

If you want to make something similar, you can do it with one 10" stack, and about a yard of yellow and 1 1/2 yards green for borders and binding. 

First, cut 36 yellow patches of the KITE section (the wider bottom one) on the die.  I think I used  strips that were 4 1/2" wide (I didn't write it down, but don't fan fold, only place 6 layers on the die over just that section, then move to cover the die again.  You'll waste less fabric for this shape, since you can flip to fit).  From the 10" stacks, cut 2 sections that are 4 by 10, and save the 2" by 10" strip.  You'll need some of this.  Pick your favorite 36 pieces and cover the whole die with the 4" by 10" piece, being careful to place the fabric for less waste.  You'll need to use the other 4 by 10" section to cut 3 more sets of 36 pieces of the smaller sections of the die, plus some of the extra from the first 4 by 10, and maybe some of the strips, just so you get enough pieces.  I cut a few extras to make sure I had variety when doing the block assembly, so I wouldn't have too many of the same color or print next to each other.  There's very little left when it's all cut, except for some of the strips, which I'm sewing together to make 4 patches.  I'll share that later. 

Put each section in a small baggie, and put them in a small box or tray.  I decided to chain piece these, which went pretty fast.  I did all the yellow triangle halves, then the color ones.  Press the seams open, according to the GO! DIe instructions, and you'll soon get 72 triangle units. 

I LOVE using the wooden press I got from Quilt in a Day.  It's great for this and for paper piecing.  Once the blocks are done, use your iron.  Having this center seam already pressed made that go so much faster.  Sew the yellow half with the color half to make 36 6" blocks.  I chose to lay these out in my pattern first, rather than making 9 12" blocks with the star centers, to help make sure I really do have a good mix of colors.  

I added a 2 1/2" inner border and 6" outer border.  I had some extras of the 6" blocks (mixed, no yellow) and was thinking of adding these to the corner, but opted to just make the border simple. 

I loaded this on Vanna, my Handi-quilter Amara long arm, and chose the Flower swirls design by Deb Geissler, and Aurifil 40wt 3817, Marrakesh, for the quilting from edge to edge.  Marrakesh is a variegated that has shades of green, pink, yellow and I thought it would look great on the mix of colors.  The flower design picks up the flowers in the fabric, too.  Since I'm still new to Long-Arming, I'm trying to learn something new with each project.  I figured out how to repeat and fill the design and to crop out the extra on the last row.  I was very happy to get those skills in my set.  I'm hoping to soon be able to quilt for others.  

I have to do the binding, but wanted to get this posted while it was still September, (at least in California, lol).  I took it to Rath Park, where I spent most of my summers in the pool when I was growing up.  I had fun getting some quick photos of Child's Play in a child's playground.  There was one little girl, maybe about 14 months old, who saw it on the bar over the bridge and stopped her dash towards the slide just to look.  I thought that was adorable!  Her grandmother prevented her from touching it, and encouraged her to keep going to the slide, but for a moment, a child was wowed by this.  Great compliment, I think.  On the way out of the park, I saw someone had drawn a flower in chalk on the pavement.  I thought it was great, since it was so much like the design I played with on the quilt.  

This will be bound soon, and probably added to my Etsy shop.  It's about 54" square, so a great size for a lap or toddler bed, and so snuggley with the backing and batting.  

As promised, I'm adding the links for the other Ambassadors, so you can look for more inspiration, and see the amazing quilts they've done with GO! dies.  

Carolina Asmussen ~Carolina Asmussen Gene Black ~ Gene Black Pamela Boatright ~ PamelaQuilts
Connie K Campbell ~ Freemotion by the River Anja Clyke ~ Anja Quilts
Tina Dillard ~ Quilting Affection Designs Becca Fenstermaker ~Pretty Piney
Jennifer Fulton ~ Inquiring Quilter Barbara Gaddy ~ Bejeweled Quilts by Barb
Dione Gardner-Stephen ~ Clever Chameleon Sarah Goer ~ Sarah Goer Quilts
Vasudha Govindan ~ Storied Quilts Lori Haase ~ Dakota City Quilter II
Joanne Hart ~ Unicornharts Mania (Magdalini) Hatziioannidi ~ Mania for Quilts
Carla Henton ~ Creatin’ in the Sticks Stephanie Jacobson ~ Steph Jacobson Designs
Connie Kauffman ~ Kauffman Designs Joan Kawano ~ Moosestash Quilting
Kim Lapacek ~ Persimon Dreams Emily Leachman ~ The Darling Dogwood
Leanne Parsons ~ Devoted Quilter Bea Lee ~ BeaQuilter
Toby Lischko ~ Gateway Quilts & Stuff Bill Locke ~ Studio Bill Locke
Denise Looney ~ For the Love of Geese Leah Malasky ~ Quilted Delights
Sally Manke ~ Sally Manke Maryellen McAuliffe ~ Mary Mack's Blog
Kathleen McCormick ~ Kathleen McMusing Carol Moellers ~ Carol Moellers Designs
Karen Neary ~ Sew Karen-ly Created Lisa Nielsen ~ Lisa Lisa and the Quilt Jam
Jackie O’Brien ~ If These Threads Could Talk Laura Piland ~ Slice of Pi Quilts
Michelle Roberts ~ Creative Blonde Vicki Schlimmer ~ Vicki's Crafts and Quilting
Gail Sheppard ~ Quilting Gail Sherry Shish ~ Powered by Quilting
Anita Skjellanger ~ Quilt in a not-Shell Laticia "Tish" Stemple ~ Tish's Adventures in Wonderland
Jennifer Strauser ~ Dizzy Quilter Jennifer Thomas ~ Curlicue Creations
Terri Vanden Bosch ~ Lizard Creek Quilts Alison Vermilya ~ Little Bunny Quilts
Sandra Walker ~ mmm! quilts Suzy Webster ~ Adventurous Applique and Quilting
(Debora) Anne Wiens ~ Seams like a Plan Geraldine Wilkins ~ Living Water Quilter
Janet Yamamoto ~ Whispers of Yore
Thanks so much for stopping by! I LOVE being an Island Batik Ambassador. We've gotten wonderful supplies and had great challenges this year. While caring for my mom, who has Alzheimer's. this really is my therapy and sanity. Getting the chance to play, and use other brands through Island Batik's partners, is awesome.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Island Batik Steam Engine quilt is done!

August's Island Batik Beat the Heat blog hop quilt has been completed!

I'm linking up with Elm Street Quilt's One Monthly Goal.  

My main goal for September was to finish this quilt.  It's a queen size, as you can see on this bed.  86 by 103, I think.  It took a while to do the quilting, and there are minor problems, but since I'm new to long arming, and this was a very challenging design, I'm giving myself a break.  I used the same border fabric for binding, and used a 108" wide back I purchased, grey floral, for the backing.  I use Hobb's Black cotton blend batting, and it looks great.  I was hoping it would not be too dark under the whiter diamond shapes, but it's fine.  
The panto pattern is Steampunk Gears by Intelligent Quilting.  
The block is Double Windmill on EQ8, but I played with the colors and designs to make it work for my project.  

I did an inner black solid border, then the teal outer border.  I think it frames it nicely.  I did have another eye doctor appointment in Scranton, so I got to take more photos with the trains.  One of the State Park Rangers was surprised, and wanted to take a photo to show his wife, who has also made a quilt or two.  (I think I'm over 100 now, but...)

I love Engine 790!  I didn't pay to go inside, but that number is the same as my home, the house I grew up in, and still live in.  

You can get an idea of the size of the quilt because that's me, holding it.  The ranger took this for me.  And the train is HUGE!! 
There was a large connector on the front of this train, which is what pushed out the quilt, but I still like how it looks.  

Thanks again for visiting.  The park is Steamtown National Historic Park in Scranton, PA. 
If you've checked back on my other goals, the Island Batik September challenge is almost done.  I used Petal Pushers and the Accuquilt GO! Spider Web die.  I'll share more in the next post.  I also still need to make an octopus! lol  I haven't started quilting the blue and yellow one, either, because I'm still trying to find a little of the blue fabric with yellow flowers.  I'll give it a few more weeks.  

Mom's been in the hospital and rehab again, because she pushed away from me because she was mad I was making her use the bathroom, and she fell and cut her head.  It's been another wild month.  When she comes home this time, I need to hire aides.  I can no longer take care of her alone, since she doesn't remember how to stand, and needs assistance of 2 people for everything.  It's sad, but I can still get her to laugh on occasion.  That's all that matters.  Alzheimer's stinks.  


Tuesday, September 10, 2019

My Favorite Quilt Block Blog Hop

Welcome to my day.  This hop is hosted by Carla of Creatin' in the Sticks.

**Please note, contest is now closed.  Random.org picked comment 21, and I've notified the winner.  Thanks again for commenting and reading!  

Welcome to day 2 on My Favorite Quilt Block blog hop!

It's so hard to pick a favorite thing.  My favorite color?  Purple, blue and fuchsia.  Favorite ice cream?  Triopolitan Chocolate, which is by Turkey Hill: dark chocolate, chocolate with mini chocolate chips, and chocolate with fudge swirl.  That's only if we don't have Tillamook Mudslide, or Turkey Hill Candy Box.  Favorite quilt block??  Who can choose?  I made a Double Windmill block and it's a great one, with a great secondary design.  See my post here   It was a favorite while I was working on it, and it's now on Vanna, the Handiquilter Amara long arm, almost done.  

I love lots of blocks.  But a favorite??  Who can pick just one?  So, I didn't.  I picked 2.  And it's been on my list to make for quite a few years.  More than 5, at least, and I haven't done it yet, until now.  Yes, last minute, but it's a block. 

I LOVE star blocks.  All kinds of star blocks.  They are fun to make and provide quite a punch in a quilt.  I also love Log Cabin blocks.  They have a light and a dark side and can do so much in a design.  Plus they are pretty easy, just keep sewing strips on.  The block I picked is called Orion's Star, and the book is by Eleanor Burns and Quilt in a Day.  

Have I mentioned I love Quilt in a Day?  All of their designs are great.  Fast, easy, accurate, lots of examples, and my favorite way to make flying geese, half square triangle units, and more.  My first official quilting class was their Log Cabin, way back in the early 1990s.  There was a little quilt shop near my new home, and I wanted to make quilts for our beds.  

Anyway, back to the design, and the more recent past.  I was working with friends who owned a fabric store, Bernie and Paul Enright.  They had this great collection, that I thought would look great in this quilt, and my notes in the book pertain to this fabric.  When they retired and closed, I took some of these to sell in my Etsy shop, because I always wanted to make this quilt in these colors.  So, I finally have my first block done (and some of the fabric is still available in my shop.)  Bernie and Paul call it their retirement fun fund.  It's an older collection by Marcus called Heartland.  I loved the vintage look and the flowers.  I mixed it with some other fabrics from my stash (I may change out one when I do the rest of the blocks, and replace it on this one, not sure it works.)

 I love the quilt colors on the back cover!  So elegant.

And the blue and yellow ones are gorgeous.  These are a few of the layouts available if you make enough blocks.  I really like the curved look, but it's not curvy, the the effect of the star in the center and how it's placed on the layout.  So cool!  I do have some blue and yellow fabric from Island Batik that I may use for this.  It's a Strip pack, with 2 1/2" strips, which is what this book uses.  When a design is a favorite, you can't make just one, right?  

Please follow along on the hop to see the other great inspiration.  Here's a link to yesterday and today's, plus the rest of the week.  And if you leave a comment for me, about your favorite block, and follow my blog by email or Bloglovin, I'll enter you to get a little prize from me.  It's probably going to be an assortment of Fat Quarters from Island Batik, but I'll surprise you.  Please be in the US, or be willing to cover the difference in shipping to you, and make sure I can contact you.  
Thanks so much for stopping by.  I hope you find some inspiration, and have some fun.  

Monday, September 9th

Tuesday, September 10th

Wednesday, September 11th

Thursday, September 12th

Friday, September 13th


Friday, September 6, 2019

September One Monthly Goal

It's time to link with Elm Street's One Monthly goal.  If you haven't checked it out, you can join any month, and if you post your finish, you have a chance to win prizes.  I'm always looking for prizes, so here are my goals this month.  I know, more than one, but at least I'll get one done.  

First, I need to finish the Island Batik Steam Engine top from last month.  It's on Vanna the Longarm as we speak, stitching away.  I finally called Handiquilter and their wonderful education department helped me get the Steampunk Gears design from Intelligent Quilting set up for the quilt.  There were a few extra steps that I hadn't learned, and after trying to do it alone, and asking for help on Facebook, I had to call.  Next time, I'll call first. It would save me lots of frustration and about 3 days of time, lol.  I'm hoping it's done for next weekend, which is Spirit Day at St. Anne's Church.  I have a craft booth there, and hope to sell a lot of quilts.  The binding is already made, but I have to make a label.

This was the instruction page.  

I'm still hoping to get the blue and yellow quilt done, and I'm also working on my Island Batik September Child's Play project using Petal Pushers, and the Accuquilt GO! Spider Web Block on Board.  I'm hoping it's done by the end of the month.  I've started sewing blocks.  

But I also have a custom order Flag, and the Funky Friend's Octopus to make, and I can't show the Octopus.  And a costume to finish.  I also have a design chosen for the Island Batik catalog next year, and need to get that started.  So glad I can have Vanna the Longarm quilt while I work on things, too.  

Just keep sewing, just keep sewing...
Thanks for stopping by.