Here’s what I was doing instead of cooking for Thanksgiving:
This little rail fence quilt is the same one I made for Felicity Walker’s new ebook, but in a different set of fabrics.
I used two layers of wool batting to make the quilt extra warm. The quilt is stiffer and a bit heavier with the double layer. I’m not sure I would do that again.
I think I’m going to make it one more time in three pale fabrics so there is less zig-zag effect. Any suggestion on colors?
11/30 edited to add: Photos by Sonya of the Fashion Fragile blog.
First, a big thank-you to all you wonderful quilters who commented on the giveaway post and are following Quilter’s Diary. It’s a pleasure to share our quilting adventures and misadventures with you.
Now, the winner of the blog giveaway! Missmoozie, a new quilter, will be receiving a free copy of Hand & Machine Quilting Tips & Tricks, by Harriet Hargrave and Alex Anderson, PLUS a mystery surprise gift of fabric. Congratulations, Miss Moozie, and thanks again to everyone else who entered.
We will be posting a giveaway every week between now and Christmas, so stay tuned for more goodies!
My Thanksgiving table runner got started with this orphan star block:
The star had somehow been left behind when I found new homes for the other blocks I inherited from a very old quilter. I got tired of seeing it float around my sewing room, looking wrinkled and lonely — it made me sad, seeing it that way — and decided to make it the centerpiece of a Thanksgiving decoration for my house.
One thing I have in abundance in my quilting room is fabric in autumn colors and patterns. Some of them have been pining to be used for
I decided to use the same quilt-as-you-go method I recently used to make this lap quilt. First, I collected a bunch of autumnal fabrics from my stash and cut them into 2-1/2″ strips, pinned the pinwheel star block to the center of the backing and batting layers, and started adding strips, one at a time. The end result looked like this:
Since I didn’t calculate exactly how much fabric I would need, I finished sewing strips onto the quilt top long before I ran out of the strips I had cut. I also had a pitiful little pile of strip segments I had trimmed from the sides of the runner. I don’t know about you, but fabric scraps stress me out. I never know quite what to do with them. After years of collecting, I just gave away all my big ol’ bags of color-coded scraps, so I’m not eager to start piling them up again.
Then a lightbulb went off: scrappy binding! I joined the strips into a long roll of continuous binding and sewed the strip to the table runner.
I like the way the whole thing looks. I love having things around me that have a history. Whenever I look at that star, I will think of my daughter’s cheerleading coach and her grandmother, who mastered so many different crafts and left behind a legacy of good deeds and beautiful things.
This quilt took less than a day to make. I love quilt-as-you-go!
I know my effort to clean up my sewing room by making all the projects in my unfinished pile is misguided. I’m perfectly well aware that each project only generates another new pile of scraps which takes up even more room than the unfinished project did. But that doesn’t stop me from trying.
My latest effort is finishing these Christmas kitty blocks. I bought them on Ebay during my early days as a quilter. They were arranged into an impractically small lap quilt top. I picked the blocks apart and rearranged them into this table runner. The fabrics look overly cute and dated to me, but I feel sure someone, somewhere, will like this quilt.
53 x 42
Here’s the story of this quilt: I had some fabric left over after making a table runner for my friend Felicity Walker’s new quilting book. (The book includes a complete tutorial for a quilt-as-you-go table runner.)
Instead of cutting the fabric into small blocks, I decided to make this lap-sized strip quilt. Here’s what I did: I cut the batting and backing first and layered them, then sewed the strips on, one at a time, as if this were a large string quilt. The key to using this method is to make the quilt no wider than the fabric strips.
The whole quilt was done in just a few hours. I don’t know why I’ve never tried this method before. I’m certainly going to use it again.
Last week I went to the Pacific International Quilt Show in Santa Clara, California. PIQF is a large show (at least, the largest one I’ve been to) and always features an exhibit of quilts from top international quilters. Seeing the work of these consummate artists is humbling for an everyday quilter like me, but it’s also inspiring. I took some photos and thought you might like to see just a taste of the different styles on display at the show. Here’s a crazy quilt stitched in 1885. I loved the owls:
Crazy Quilt from 1885
Here’s a modern take on the Log Cabin quilt, In the Shadow of the Gardener I, by June Atherton:
A New York Beauty variation called Rainbow for Tucker, by Kimberly D. Hess. Check out the pattern of the quilting:
It’s hard to convey how perfectly fresh and springy these applique flowers looked. The quilt is aptly named Springtime in the Garden, by Terri Schneider.
And how about this whole cloth quilt, Susanna in Waiting, by Kathleen M. Collins? The image was drawn on the fabric with ink and colored pencil:
If I get industrious, I’ll post some more glorious quilts later in the week.