2020 Mini Series SAL – Week 4

Hi everyone,

The little block for this week is called Hexagon Step. This is another block that took about 2 hours to sew together.

When I first saw the block, it reminded me of radiation danger signs!

Hexagon Step Pattern cover

I decided to change up the look by not alternating my color strips with background strips in each row. Instead, I used full color row around the hexagon shape and then followed it with a full row of the background fabric.

Here’s a look at my Hexagon Step block with one of my antique toy sewing machines. Isn’t the little seahorse cute?

My Hexagon Step block with antique toy sewing machine

I’m enjoying piecing these little blocks each week. There are small but satisfying in these unusual times. We have four more blocks left to sew in the SAL, not counting the bonus block, and then we have a 2 week window to make and finish a project using the blocks.

Here’s a look at my first four blocks together:

Mini Series SAL blocks 1-4

Next week, I’ll post my Stretched Geese block for week 5.

Take care and happy quilting!

~Jen

Sea Glass BOM by Fig Tree, Blocks 1-3

Last year, I signed up for a new 12-month 2020 block-of-the-month (BOM) program with Fig Tree & Co called Sea Glass. This program contains the fabric and instructions to create two blocks each month using soft sea glass colors for a breezy, beachy feel.

The first block packets shipped in January with a block called Sand Dollar. My neighbor’s cat stopped by for a brief inspection. He gives the blocks his approval!

Sea Glass BOM, Month 1, Sand Dollar

In February, we received our second packet with fabrics to create the Starfish blocks. I love all of the aquas and light turquoises, playing together.

Sea Glass BOM, Sand Dollar and Starfish Blocks

Our block for March is called Sea Anemone, and I just finished sewing mine together last weekend. There are some sawtooth border pieces to stitch together for March so I am a little bit behind, but I should catch up this week.

Sea Glass BOM, Sea Anemone Block

I expect to received the fabric and instructions for April any day now. I have seen some sneak peeks of the fabric on Instagram under the #seaglassbom hashtag, and the fabrics look really pretty! I hope to get April’s blocks stitched together this coming weekend.

Here’s a look at the first three blocks together:

Sea Glass BOM, Blocks 1-3

This color palette has me wishing for the Oregon beaches to reopen soon!

Happy quilting!

~Jen

Tula Pink’s 100 Modern Quilt Blocks Project, Part 2

Hi everyone,

If you celebrate Easter, I hope that you had a great day yesterday even if it wasn’t your usual celebration with social distancing practices in place. We had beautiful weather and enjoyed being together and taking the dog for a long walk.

Last week, I blogged about one of my works-in-progress (WIP) started back in 2018.

Today, I’m going to show you my completed Tula Pink 100 modern quilt block finished quilt flimsy! If you haven’t heard of the term “flimsy” before, it is just the completed quilt top before quilting. I pieced the entire quilt using Aurifil 50 weight thread in white.

I added the white block frames to all 100 of my blocks, and then I added the sashing (Kona cotton in Lighthouse) to each row individually. I pieced together the top 5 rows separately from the bottom 5 rows, just so that I didn’t get confused and to help keep the weight of the quilt top less.

When I had the top 5 rows and the bottom 5 rows pieced, I was ready to join them together.

Here’s a look at the two last chunks of the quilt on the floor of my quilting room:

The top 5 rows and the bottom 5 rows, ready to be stitched together

This quilt flimsy is pretty large so I couldn’t get a good picture of it indoors. My husband and I each stood on a chair to hold up the quilt flimsy, and our teen son took the photo in the field behind our house.

Completed Tula Pink 100 Modern Quilt Blocks Quilt Top

It was a very windy afternoon and so we had to take multiple pictures and wait a bit for the breeze to subside. I do think the quilt looks pretty, fluttering in the wind!

Tula Pink’s 100 Modern Quilt Block Quilt Top, fluttering in the wind!

Of course, one of my quilt inspectors strolled by to supervise the photo session. My cat, Cow, is just off to the side of the quilt, rolling in the dirt. He is loving this sunny weather!

Cow, the quilt inspector, loves to roll in the field dirt!

Next, I need to decide how to do the quilting. I want the focus of the quilt to be the beautiful blocks so I’ll likely do just an all-over swirly pattern. I don’t want custom or heavy quilting to distract from the blocks.

I hope to get this quilting and bound by July.

Happy quilting!

~Jen

2020 Mini Series SAL – Week 3

Hi all,

Time sure feels different in this era of “sheltering in place.” I’m happy that, for my job, I’m able to work from home, but I’m missing outdoor activities like hiking and missing friends and family.

The Mini Series SAL, hosted by Alison Glass and Giucy Giuce, is a great help during these times because it is uplifting to be participating in a project with so many other quilters around the world. You can see my week 1 block here and my week 2 block here.

We are now on to week 3 in the SAL with the challenging Pineapple block. This block has many, many pieces, and it took me approximately 2 hours to sew a 4-inch block!!

I’m using a Kona cotton charm square pack called Mermaid Shores for my colors, and a wonderful batik with pebble like shapes for my background. I want to invoke all the beach feelings!

Here’s a look at my Pineapple block in my garden:

Here’s a look at the first 3 blocks all together (Log Cabin, Courthouse Step, Pineapple):

First 3 blocks with a little fairy garden statue

Let me know in the comments if you are participating in the SAL and your Instagram handle so I can give you a follow!

Enjoy!

~Jen

Tula Pink’s 100 Modern Quilt Blocks Project, Part 1

Hi everyone,

In 2018, I participated in an Instagram challenge, hosted by Angie, @gnomeangel. For the challenge, we had to post one block per day for 100 days, starting in July, using the blocks from Tula Pink’s City Sampler: 100 Modern Quilt Blocks.

For my project, I used all Tula fabrics plus various solids. I kept up with the challenge and posted all the blocks to Instagram on the assigned days.

Here’s a look at one of my blocks that I made and posted in 2018. This block is on a mini design board.

One of my Tula blocks posted for the 100 days 100 blocks challenge in 2018

Fast forward to this year. In January, the registration opened up for Quilter’s Affair, which is a week of classes leading up to the big Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in July. I was able to snag a spot in one of Tula’s classes! I decided that I needed to pull out this old project and finish it so that I could take it with me to Sisters. Of course, all this happened before we really knew about COVID-19 and learned about social distancing.

Hopefully, the COVID-19 pandemic will crest before July and social gatherings will once again be able to take place. However, if not, then I hope everyone stays safe and healthy, and we can enjoy the quilt show in 2021.

I pulled out all of my blocks and my book to get started:

In the back of the book, there are several finishing layout designs. I decided to make the Trellis layout, which is a throw size using 64 blocks. However, I want to use all 100 of my blocks using this layout for a larger quilt.

I used Kona cotton in White for my block frames and Kona cotton in Lighthouse for the sashing.

I stitched together my first 3 rows in February:

First 3 Rows of my 100 Modern Blocks quilt

I’ve been working on this project little by little over the past 2 months. It helps to have such a bright and colorful quilt project to work on in these uncertain times.

I finished the top 5 rows recently, and my kitty quilt inspector gave it his approval:

First 5 rows of my 100 modern quilt blocks project

I have all 10 rows now completed, but I need to join them together. I will show you the finished quilt flimsy in part 2 soon!

Happy quilting!

~Jen

2020 Mini Series SAL – Week 1

Hi everyone,

Have you heard about the 2020 Mini Series Sew Along hosted by Alison Glass (#alisonglass) and Giucy Giuce (#giucygiuce) ?

It’s a 10-week sew along with 8 tiny foundation paper-pieced blocks plus a bonus block for those participants who sign up on Alison’s website. The SAL is free; however, you do need to purchase the patterns. You can find the patterns on Alison’s website or from various quilt stores that she mentions

Here are my fabric selections for the SAL:

  • A Kona charm square pack called Mermaid Shores
  • A batik fabric for the background that reminds me of pebbles on a beach
  • A Tula Pink fat quarter from the Zuma line with little stars and seahorses

Fabric Selection for 2020 Mini Series SAL

I’m making the 4-inch blocks rather than the 8-inch blocks due to the length of my charm squares.

For week one, we are making the classic log cabin block. I’m an experienced foundation paper piecer so I already had an Add-An-Eighth ruler on hand as well as some very fine 80 weight piecing thread. The 80 weight thread is important with smaller blocks because it is less thick than 50 weight thread so your block presses flatter.

I fuzzy cut a little star for the very center of my block from the Zuma fat quarter. You can see it in the picture with the dime for scale.

Here are some pictures of my log cabin block:

Week 1: Log Cabin Block

Week 1: Log Cabin block with dime for scale

Week 1: Log Cabin Block on Tree

Week 1: Log Cabin block on a stump

I really love these colors together! I’m leaning towards making a small wall-hanging quilt with the blocks from this SAL. I may make a few extra of some of the blocks, but I have’t entirely decided.

Here’s a look at the back of the block. I will keep the paper on for stability until I sew the block to another block or sashing.

Week 1: Log Cabin back of block

Are you participating in the SAL? Leave me a comment below!

Happy stitching!

~Jen

Double Struck Star Quilt

Hi everyone,

I finished this fun modern quilt earlier this year called Double Struck Star by Krista Moser of The Quilted Life.

This quilt has an off-set, partial star shape, with each of its three star points featuring colorful fabrics. I selected some small-scale modern prints and solids to create my star points in greens, oranges, and turquoises.

The background triangles are from five different low-volume fabrics and one darker gray fabric. I used the same gray fabric for the inner star shadow border and the binding fabric.

Here’s a look at my fabric selections:

star_struck_fabrics

Fabric Selections for Double Struck Star

I cut and pieced all my colorful triangles first and then added them to my design wall, tweaking a few here and there. I made a few fabric substitutions because some of the prints had the wrong scale or wrong shade in my initial fabric pull.

I did follow the pattern recommendation to have more of the lighter triangles towards the middle of the star with the darker triangles radiating out towards the star points.

star_struck_design_wall

Double Struck Star points on design wall

Once I was satisfied with the colorful triangles, I pieced the neutral triangles. The triangles with the gray star shadow were a little tricky, but I used my pins liberally to ensure the seams matched.

For quilting, I used Glide in Cool Grey 3 with free-motion swirls in the colorful triangles. I used the same thread color in the neutral triangles, but I experimented using different free-motion designs and ruler work in each of the triangles.

star_struck_quilting

Quilting the Double Struck Star Quilt

For the binding, I used the dark gray fabric and added a very small color-pop section using left over pieces from the colorful triangles.

I recruited my hubby to hold the quilt while I took pictures of it at a local park earlier this year.

star_struck_finished1

Completed Double Struck Star Quilt

star_struck_finished2

Close-Up of Completed Double Struck Star Quilt

Isn’t this a cheerful quilt? It reminds me of all the beautiful spring flowers emerging after a cold, rainy winter!

Happy quilting!

~Jen

Quilter’s Affair 2019 Classes

This year, my sister and I took 2 classes at A Quilter’s Affair in the week leading up to the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.

For our first class, we decided to take an English Paper Piecing class (EPP) with Violet Craft because we really haven’t used this quilting technique before and we both thought it might be a great technique to do while traveling.

We used the Fruit Basket pattern, and we both picked the strawberry for our practice block, and we learned some great tips in the class.

Start of my strawberry block:

Strawberry 1

Here’s a pic of us together with our strawberry blocks in August when my sister came to my house for a visit. I’m on the right with the blue shorts.

I have started working on the pineapple block, but I must admit that I haven’t made too much progress. I’ll pick it up again when the weather turns rainy, and I do less hiking and yard work.

For our second class, we took “Gertie’s Birdies” with Sally Frey. We used the pattern Feathers by The Pattern Basket. We signed up for this class because birds have a special inside meaning to us and these chunky little birds just looked so cute.

I made 3 birds in class using the Sweet Tea collection by Sweetwater for Moda Fabrics plus some solids by Cherrywood. I love these fabrics because they remind me of summer!

Here is a look at the birds from other quilters in the class at the end of the day. My 3 bird blocks are in the top left:

I’ve finished another 3 bird blocks in the months since our class. I plan on making 3 more so I can complete the smaller quilt, which will be a perfect little summer wall hanging.

The Quilter’s Affair is so much fun, and I’m glad my sister got to come this year. We hope to go again next year!

Here’s a view of the Three Sisters during an evening hike we took:

Happy quilting!

-Jen

Prince Cherrywood Challenge Finalist!

This past year, I entered a quilt into the annual Cherrywood Challenge for the first time. Cherrywood makes beautiful and unique hand dyed fabrics with a suede-like appearance. Each year, they sponsor a challenge where contestants can submit 20-inch by 20-inch quilts in a specific theme using a limited palette of Cherrywood fabrics.

For 2018, the challenge theme was Prince. The Prince Challenge fabric bundle contained 3 purples and 1 black. While we could use other Cherrywood colors as accents, our quilts had to “read” as purple. We could also use embellishments to enhance our quilts.

For my entry, I wanted to feature Prince and his wonderful performance at the Superbowl. In particular, I wanted to highlight the song “Purple Rain” because it was such a stunning moment for him and the audience.

Here’s a look at my completed quilt with a ruler to show the judges the 20-inch size:

DSC_0211 (2)

Prince Cherrywood Challenge Completed Quilt

I used holographic thread for the swirly quilting in the black background. In person, the thread has a beautiful shimmery look to it. The black background also has little beads with silver metallic threads to represent the camera flashes from the stadium audience. I used a purple Razzle Dazzle thread to give a hint of the “purple” rain during the performance.

For the purple background, I used metallic thread in the straight-line quilting. I used the thread to accent the guitar, guitar strap, and to add music notes.

The Prince symbol represents the stage while Prince faces the crowd in a decorated purple jacket.

Here are some close-up pictures:

There were 388 submitted quilts for the Prince challenge. Out of those 388 quilts, there were 165 finalists.

My quilt made it as a finalist! It is now traveling the country to various quilt shows as part of the Prince Live Tour. I will get to visit the show in person in 2019 when it travels to 2 quilt shows near me: the Clark County Quilt Show in March and the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in July. Cherrywood will likely have book signing events at each of these shows, and I hope to be one of the artists signing books.

Here’s a look at the Prince Cherrywood Challenge book:

You can order a copy of the book, featuring all of the finalist quilts, from Cherrywood directly or you can buy a copy at the traveling exhibit.

Happy quilting!

~Jen

Cadence Court Quilt

Hi everyone!

I saw the beautiful Cadence Court Quilt by Sassafras Lane Designs on many Instagram feeds over the summer and decided that I really wanted to make one using sunset colors.

This quilt is mostly foundation paper pieced with a little bit of traditional piecing to add the background pieces and center pieces. There are 24 paper pieced wedges to make and each wedge took me roughly 2 hours to sew.

For my colorful sections, I used Alison Glass fabrics in 6 colors. Each color is repeated 4 times throughout the quilt. The white background is Alison Glass Sun Print Compass in coconut. The black fabric has tiny metallic hearts that look pretty in person and is called Yes Please Hearts by Riley Black. The gray fabrics are just solids.

cc_all_wedges

I started working on the quilt in August, and I finished it in November. Between working full-time and going on a family hiking trip to the southwest in August, I think that I assembled this quilt pretty quickly!

I used my Handi Quilter Avante longarm with Superior thread to do ruler work around the triangle shapes as well as custom free-motion quilting in the negative spaces. I used the Handi Quilter 3-inch slice ruler to create a beautiful swirl in the quilt center.cc_quilting_closeup

cc_halfcircle_rulerwork

If you live in the Missoula, Montana area, you can see the quilt on display at The Confident Stitch. They carry all the fabrics and the pattern that I used to make this quilt. For other color inspirations, go check out the #cadencecourt hashtag on Instagram!

Here’s a look at my finished quilt. Isn’t it just gorgeous?

cc_finished

Happy quilting!

~Jen