Quilting in the Summer: Dogs in Sweaters

Dog in Sweater.3

Dog in Sweater.2

Pattern:  “Dogs in Sweaters” quilt and pillow pattern by Elizabeth Hartman.

Fabrics:  Scraps!  In retrospect, I should have matched the white(ish) background, but I set out to use scraps, and those were the scraps I had.  The darker muslin is from a freebie fabric bag that came with a pack of yarn I bought 20 years ago.  The backing is from a Norwegian duvet cover donated by my dear friend.  The cotton seersucker cover had been her mother’s favorite and was no longer usable because of some rips in the 50-year-old fabric.

Made for:  My non-biological sister in Texas who has metastatic pancreatic cancer.  She is fighting the good fight.  She LOVES dachshunds, and I know she will be amused by this pillow cover!

Modifications:  The original pillow case pattern finished in a size for which there were no readily available pillow forms.  So, I eyeballed it and ended up with a cover that takes a standard sized pillow.  I also did not do the three-layer quilted backing, opting for a double layer of the seersucker.

Thoughts:  I am rubbish at quilting, mainly because I am a piecer, not a quilter . . .  I think the wavy line quilting turned out OK though.  The dachshund required many little pieces of fabric; not frustrating, but needed patience.  So worth the effort for the “cuteness” factor!

The Perfect Point

About a year ago, I started making the Swoon Quilt, by Camille Roskelley.  Yes, I know, I was late to the party.  For a few weeks I chugged along, sewing each block with scraps from all the quilts I have ever made in my short quilting life.  Then I lost my sewing mojo as the house buying and house moving and house selling stuff just went on and on . . . .  I had only one block left to do, and I finally got around to it after a 3 months hiatus.  I LOVED my fabric choices for that last block!  And then I discovered that somehow, my bare-quarter-inch seam had shifted, and that last block was about a quarter-inch off on all sides.  Sigh.  This is by way of explaining why the finished quilt has extra patches in the background color, because of course I had to stick to the “scraps only” rule, and wouldn’t you know I had no more Moda “snow” left, and I had to fuss with not just the last block, but adjacent blocks too.  Anyway.  I did finish, though, and I love my Swoon, fixes and all:

Swoon!

Swoon!

As a result of Swoon, I had even more triangles than I had before.  Then I found the Mod GeoCruiser quilt by Kelli Fannin (read about her inspiration here).  I had been wanting to do a bicycle-themed quilt for DH, and even though this is a cruiser bike (and a girly one at that), and he is a road bike fanatic, I thought it was a fun design that he would like.  It also helps that he is the most un-macho man I know 🙂  So this is the quilt top:

Mod Geo Cruiser

Mod GeoCruiser

I learned how to make really sharp points with this quilt: cut the triangles larger than specified, then trim down after sewing.  Really simple idea, right?  The small amount of fabric waste is so worth it, because despite my best efforts, I do not have a consistent quarter-inch seam (as I proved with Swoon).  I’m still not fond of triangles, but at least I can sew really good ones now!

My cruiser is made up of scraps from previous quilts, plus fabric from Mom’s house dresses.  I really like the idea of having bits and pieces of her dresses in this and all future quilts; the therapist tells me what I’m doing is taking Mom with me.  That is a very comforting thought.

London Tube Map Quilt

A year and two machine quilting later, the London Tube Map Quilt:IMG_2457Pattern:  London Tube Map Quilt, from Tikki Patchwork.

Fabric:  Truly a work of scraps from pretty much every quilt I have ever made in my short quilting life.  I felt so very thrifty and virtuous while sewing 🙂

Quilting:  Long arm machine quilting done at The Sewing Circle.

Thoughts:  I balked at cutting out 653 (!) 2.5″ squares of the white background — so quite a few of them were in fact 4.5″ squares.  The actual sewing of the top did not take that long, but shortly after finishing the top and while piecing the back, I lost my quilting mojo . . . .  for about 7 months.

Last month I finally finished the back, and went to one of my favorite quilt stores to do the machine quilting.  Unfortunately, Bella the long arm machine was having fits that day, and the backside of my quilt had many (and I mean many) loops of loose threads — so many that the owner of the shop decided that we (or rather, they) needed to unpick ALL the quilting and start over.  Which they did, bless their collective hearts.  And now, the quilt is finally ready to give to my travel GF in Salt Lake City!  Given the price of plane tickets to London, it may be awhile before we head there again . . . .

Modern Affair

For the Kid’s godmother, the Modern Affair Quilt:

Fabric: “Modern Affair,” by Patricia Bravo for Art Gallery

Pattern: Scrappy, with scrappy binding, finished size ~ 60″ x 70″

Batting: Kyoto Bamboo Blend (50% Bamboo-50% Cotton)

Quilting: Machine quilted on Bella, the Gammill Longarm Optimum machine with Statler Stitcher, using edge-to-edge paisley pattern

What I learned: The Modern Affair line is absolutely gorgeous, and I love the blues and greens, but I need to work on contrast …  There is always a next quilt, right?