Wednesday, March 30, 2016

March Madness with Island Batik

Hi!  Thanks for visiting!  This is a #MiniMadnessIB post, plus announcing the winner of the #Creativenewquilts blog hop.  

First, the winner. picked #29, so I've contacted Janet for her information.  

Now, onto the #MarchmadnessIB challenge. 
Island Batik has challenged the Ambassadors to come up with something each month, using the fabrics we've gotten in our boxes.  Since this is my 3rd year as Ambassador, I have a small stash of pieces, and I've been using it for challenges for other blogs.  My schedule was a little crazy, aka madness, lately, so I decided to finish at least 1 of the minis I made using Island Batik for last year's Aurifil DOM (designer of the month) challenge.  I was hoping for more, but it's March 30.  Maybe I'll get the others finished soon. 

So, Kimberly Jolly designed this mini. 

Kimberly Jolly photo from Aurifil's blog post

I was working with a gorgeous rainbow of FQs from Island Batik, from the 2015 Full Bloom collection.  It was the gorgeous collection of colors used in the 4th and 6th designs Block of the Month quilt, the appliqued flowers in various sizes.  

I played with the design from Aurifil, using colored pencils, and came up with this version.  

And I put it in a project bag, until I could figure out how I wanted to quilt it.  And it sat!  For a year!  Until the Ambassadors were challenged to create a mini.  But I must admit I never liked the pale yellow border.  It just didn't balance with the clear, bright colors in the rest of the quilt, although it did match the center yellow square.  I just didn't know what else to use for a border.  

If you've been following me, you know I recently moved, and I'm (still) in the process of organizing and painting my new studio, but I do have my main machine set up in my basement apartment.  The studio is on the 2nd floor in my parents' house, and needs some more work.  When I pulled out the minis to finish, I looked through my Island Batik box to see if there was something I liked better for the border.  I pulled a deeper purple, and a brighter yellow, and even one of the oranges from Coral Reef Ocean Waves quilt (you can see that on the link).  And it still wasn't right.  

Then I decided to organize my little cutting space in the basement, and found the perfect border.  Yes, it's from Coral Reef!  It's the multi colored print, with all of the colors from this mini and I think it looks so much better.  

 I LOVE the border now.  It has orange, hot pink and purple, and even a touch of green and yellow (although my mini doesn't have green).  I also love that the collections from other years go so well with the newer collections from Island Batik.  
 I quilted it with concentric feathers, to accent the colors in the radiant rows.  I used Aurifil 50wt cotton in 4651, named Bari, a mix of yellow, pink and lavender pastels that looks great on the yellow, orange and light pink sections.  I used Aurifil 50wt 4020, Fuchsia, for the deeper pink diamond, and finished with Aurifil 50wt in 2540, medium lavender, for the lavender, purple and border areas.  

So, sometimes, a UFO gets finished because of a challenge.  Yay for challenges!  I used Warm & Natural batting, and a scrap of the peach mottle dyed muslin for the backing, and added a hanging sleeve.  I'm very happy that it's now done, just in time for #marchmadnessib.  

I did make 2 mug rugs, too.  Those are minis, right?  I used the scraps from Coral Reef Ocean Waves to make these.  I did a craft fair, and usually make a few mug rugs, and offer one for the vendor raffles, if asked.  

 Yes, that's the same purple/fuchsia/green fabric from the border on the larger mini.  These measure about 8 by 9", and they're perfect for using scraps, practicing free-motion quilting, and putting under your favorite beverage and cookie snack.  

Have you made a mini or a mug rug?  I have more to make!  I realized some of the Sea Salt Sandy FQs I have that I didn't use on the pyramid quilt would be great in the Aurifil Winter Stars mini, and would match the towels in my new bathroom.  That may be next on my list, after I finish painting the bathroom.  

If you want to see more of the Island Batik Ambassador's mini quilts, please visit Joan at Moose Stash Quilting.  She's sharing links to all of them!  

And I know what I want to make for the April Showers challenge!  

I hope you'll visit again to see how we play with @IslandBatik.  Thanks!


Thursday, March 24, 2016

Creative New Quilts and Projects and Giveaway

Hi and Welcome to my day on this fun Blog Hop featuring gorgeous fabrics from Island Batik in the wonderful designs in the 2nd book by Wendy Sheppard, 
Creative New Quilts and Projects from Precuts or Stash.  
I'm honored to be a part of this!
I've been an Ivory Spring fan for years!  Wendy's designs are always so pretty, unique, interesting and fun.  Many of her designs are based on classic blocks and quilts, but she adds her own flair to everything she does.  And you NEED to check out her quilting.  Totally swoon-worthy, and she gives tutorials and hints on how to try to do what she does with a domestic machine.  I've purchased her first book, and knew I wanted this one.  I've also purchased calendars and magazines just because her designs are included.  I even want her Aurifil thread collection!  

So, when a message went out to the Island Batik Ambassadors asking who would want to participate in this blog hop, I wrote back within seconds, begging to be included (really, about 5 "please's and memememe").  I was SO relieved to get the "yes" email back!  
Then the fun began!  We got a preview of the designs in the book, and were asked to pick 3. (Very difficult to pick only 3, I want to make so many of them!)  We were then told which of our choices we could make, and asked to choose fabrics.  I picked Stars over Columbia. 

Talk about fun!  Let's go play in the warehouse at Island Batik and pick from ANY of the current collections, which are now available in your favorite LQS (No? Ask them to order it!)

So, how can I use a collection from Island Batik to make this quilt, but do something a little different?  Which colors do I want to use?  Although I loved the red, cream, blue and grey that Wendy used, I wanted something different.  I picked London Fog.  

(I took a quick picture on my brother's classic Mercedes, because it matched the light teal inner border from Island Batik, lol) 

For the main colors, I picked the aquas, purples, and lavenders.  For the accent color (red in Wendy's) I picked green, SKU 121506022.  My background is Egg White.  I chose to keep it all the same, but you could easily use scraps for yours.  I also wanted to make it larger, and added 2 borders.  Wendy's quilt measures 36 by 45".  Although I've recently had a new great-nephew and a great-niece is due any day, and this would be a sweet Baby size quilt, I wanted to show you that you could take this design and change it to make it your own.  I added 10 extra of the "blue" star blocks, and the first border is 2 1/2" cut WOF (need 5 strips) and the outer border is 6 1/2" wide (finishes at 6", cut 6 strips)  My quilt measures about 62 by 72", which I think is a great Lap size.   

I made sure I placed the green (aka red) stars in the same location, even though I now had 30 blocks and a 5 by 6 grid layout, and I LOVE the splash of color and interest.  I know Wendy's used this technique in other designs, and it just adds so much sparkle to the quilt.  

This first fabric above is the detail of the outer border, which I felt would pull all the colors together.  It's SKU 121510004.  The middle is for binding, and that's SKU 121508006.  The backing fabric is Sea Salt Sandy SKU 121500348

You NEED this book in your collection.  There are so many great projects using 2 1/2" strips, general scraps (which is what Stars over Columbia uses, but I used FQs) and charms and FQs.  And there are great suggestions for quilting these.  I'm sure you'll find something you want to make, or inspiration for quilting your project.  
So, to purchase, please Click and order from Landauer or to get a signed copy, email Wendy through her blog.  If you can't wait, or you're outside the US, you can purchase a PDF copy here.
Wendy was also a guest on Pat Sloan's Podcast.  You can listen to that HERE.
To see the other Ambassador's posts on this book and get a peek at the rest of the designs, here's the list.

Monday, March 14 - Island Batik Intro
Tuesday, March 15 - Crossings - Adele Mogavero, The Fit Quilter
Wednesday, March 16 - Flight of Colors Pillows - Pamela Boatright, Pamela Quilts 
Thursday, March 17 - Care for a Cuppa - Joan Kawano, MooseStash Quilting
Friday, March 18 -  Birds of a Feather Placemats - Barb Gaddy, Bejeweled Quilts

Monday, March 21 - Birds of Feather Runner - Linda Pearl, One Quilting Circle
Tuesday, March 22 - Childhood Memories - Bea Lee, BeaQuilter
Wednesday, March 23 - Winter Blues - Connie Campbell, Freemotion by the River and
Marlene Oddie, KISSed Quilts -
Thursday, March 24 - Stars Over Columbia - Maryellen McAuliffe, Mary Mack Made Mine
Friday, March 25 - Count My Blessings - Patti Bochey, Lemon Tree Snippets

Some of them still have the chance to win a copy of the book available.  Go enter!  
And to win a copy of the book from me, just comment below!  I'll choose one random comment on Monday, March 28, to win a copy from Landauer.  Must be US address to win.  

Since my dad got so sick, I haven't had much time to quilt.  I'm taking my mom to visit him every day, as well as taking care of things for their house.  He's in Rehab now, rebuilding his strength, and we think he'll be home in about 2 weeks.  We can't wait to get him home!
I'll get this one quilted, soon, though, and share the finish here.  I can't wait to show you!  And if you make anything from the book, make sure you share it on Instagram, either tagging @IvorySpring or #Creativenewquilts.  I can't wait to see what you make! 

Thanks for visiting!  
Displaying Wendy Sheppard Blog Hop Graphic.jpg

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

#PTABloghop Winner and Save the Date

Were you as sorry to see this hop end as I was?  Were you as inspired by the colors and designs and quilting as I was?  The Ambassadors did a wonderful job with all the fabrics showcased.  And, now, or very soon, you can be using these collections in your quilts, too! Just ask your favorite store to carry Island Batik.  

I used to pick my winner, and Christi from North Carolina was the comment number drawn.  I'll be sending her an assortment of 5 FQs from Island Batik, plus a 5" roll (that was in the newest Ambassador shipment) and I'm throwing in 2 small spools of #Aurifil Mako 50wt thread, in 2600, Dove, which is perfect for piecing her next project.  I won a package of 10 spools, so I'm sharing!  I've been filling bobbins with one spool (usually about 3 1/2 bobbins for my Viking Sapphire 850) and then use the other new spool for the top thread. You can piece a lot of blocks and quilts with that much thread!  

I've been working on quilting designs in the purple/cream squares on my Ocean Waves quilt, and painting my "new" bathroom, among other things.  I've also been working with #IslandBatik London Fog on a project for the next hop.

This inspiring hop starts March 14, and goes through March 25.  You'll have lots of chances to win a copy of the book, and maybe even more!  You do want to get this book!  

You'll have to wait and see what I've done with Wendy's gorgeous design and stunning Island Batik fabrics.  I'm so excited to show you!  It's so pretty!  

Thanks so much for hopping along with the Island Batik Ambassadors!  I hope you join us as we share projects from Wendy's book!  See you soon!