Saturday, March 10, 2018

Fabric Sale or Fabric Fail?

I bought this cute Woodland panel for 50 cents at a Super Bowl sale at my local quilt shop:

I thought it would make a cute Quilts for Kids donation quilt.  When I looked through my stash for some coordinates, it seemed that everything I had was just a little too bright, and made the panel look dull in comparison.

So, this weekend, I went to a local fabric blowout sale that advertised fabric at $4.00 a yard.  I picked out some fabrics to go with the panel, but with a 1 yard minimum purchase, I ended up spending $20.00 for five yards.

Now granted, that's a great price for fabric, and I will most definitely have some leftover to add back into the stash.  But, does it really make sense to spend $20 for fabric to go with a 50 cent panel?

Toby is still mulling this over.

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Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Shawl wrapped up

I'm a little late, but here is the update on Prayer Shawls I made in 2017:

My first finish was this teal and white color combination that I had only just started back in 2016, but got it completed last year:

I also made two shawls from what has become my favorite pattern, the One Skein Wrap.  The first one was a combination of white with pink:

The second one was this magenta/cranberry colored one that I blogged about here.

This next one was made up of rows of fans.  I think I may have to dig out that pattern and make another one.

With Spring and Summer coming, I wanted to make a more lightweight lacy shawl, so I made this one:

With all the open areas in this pattern, it was not surprising that it only took two skeins instead of the usual three.

This next one was a bit more masculine. It's based on the granny square pattern, but done in rows. 

Long color variations in the yarn from white to purple made for an interesting finished look in this next one:

Not as many shawls in 2017 as there were in previous years.  I developed some wrist pain, so I had to cut back on how long I could crochet in one sitting, and also take some time off for it to rest. 

My Prayer Shawl group continues to be going strong.  In only four years we have created and given away over 1000 shawls! 

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Monday, February 26, 2018

Dad's Plaids become Mom's quilt

It was 2 years ago today that my father left this earth.  He had a peaceful passing at 87 years old, but we still miss him every day.  This is especially true of my mother who was happily married to him for 63 years.

As you can see from the photo, Dad loved a plaid shirt.  His closet was full of flannel ones:

I wanted to use them to make a quilt, but it was hard to think about cutting into them.  This past Christmas, I decided it was finally time to make the quilt.  I wanted to showcase the plaids as much as possible, so I cut out large squares using the sleeves and bordered them with black flannel:

This was my first time using flannel.  I found that cutting narrow strips from the loosely woven fabric  was a bit difficult.  Then I remembered that I had recently acquired a Stripology ruler.  I hadn't even tried it yet, but this was the exact right time to use it.

I only mention this because one of my Dad's favorite expressions was "the right tool for the right job".  It seemed so perfect that I had the exact tool for this job while making a quilt from Dad's shirts.  He would have greatly appreciated that.  The strips were then easily cut, all at the same time.

I laid the blocks out to give a basket weave effect:

With Christmas fast approaching, I needed to get this quilted quickly.  My friend, Rosemary was kind enough to do a beautiful job of stippling to get the project done with a quick turnaround time.

On Christmas Eve, I gave the quilt to my mother.  She was immensely surprised, pleased and, of course, emotional.  She told me she loved it, and has been using it on her bed ever since. She tells me that she sleeps better with the quilt over her.  I could not have asked for anything more.

I have kept all the remaining shirt fabrics for some future keepsakes, even the small scraps.  It was a healing experience for me to work with them and I'm so happy with how it all turned out.

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Sunday, February 25, 2018

Red and White Resolution

When I left off in my last post, I was working on a small red and white quilt, but due to a mistake I ended up with two different sized blocks:

I needed to enlarge the birdhouse blocks by a half  inch so they would match the pineapple blocks.  I thought of adding a border to them with some solid white fabric strips that I left over from another quilt.
But, as I think you can see in the photo, they were actually too white and wouldn't quite match.

If you recall, the original challenge for this quilt was to use only fabric from your stash, so I went looking to see what else I had.  Luckily, I found a scrap of white fabric about the size of a fat quarter that I could use:

I had just about enough to frame each of the birdhouse blocks:

I trimmed them to match the size of Pineapple blocks, but then decided to turn them into Snowball blocks to help hide the fact that they had been expanded.

Seemed like a logical choice, but it took me many tries to get the red triangle corners to match up to the Pineapple blocks.  The test block above shows several attempts.  Each one of those triangles pictured in the test block was a slightly different measurement. Also, I had to be careful not to cut into any of the embroidery.

Eventually,  I decided to go with what I had, and I sewed the blocks together:

I'm not thrilled with the way the 2 blocks meet at the seams, but at least they are consistently inconsistent, and I can live with that.

A half inch white inner border, and a 2 inch red outer border will bring this mini quilt up to 20 X 20" which is the maximum size for my guild's challenge.

Fun to see what you can come up with using just your stash, which I think is exactly what the goal of this challenge was supposed to be.
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