Quick Half Square Rectangle Quilt

I made this quilt for my sister for Christmas. I was shopping for kid cousin Christmas presents on Black Friday, and I saw this cute fat quarter pack, and it reminded me of her.  I had already got her something else for Christmas, so there was no pressure that it had to be done in time.

Still, when I got it home it kept calling me from the sewing room. “I’m here! Come and play with me, please.” So I did. I didn’t make a great plan, so it came out a little disorganized, but my sister is pregnant with her fourth baby. I’m confident that at this point she can handle a bit of disorder.

This may have been one of the fastest quilts I’ve ever finished. I had a little break from work, and it was complete in a week. I think I should do that more often, because it was so satisfying!

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Santa’s Workshop Show n Tell

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I am so excited to have finished this quilt. I have been working on it for quite a few years. I can’t even remember how many at this point. I instantly fell in love with these panels when I went to my local quilt shop and bought the big one and the little squares.

I decided to make it a window quilt after seeing some cute ones done with panels at quilt guild. It’s a long story, and I posted a video about it on my youtube channel, but here are a couple of photos of the things that kept me stumped. It’s funny how it turned out that just a few simple fill in blocks finished it up nicely.

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I got the whole quilt finished and bound, and then realized that I hadn’t quilted in one tree, and I had quilted the other one, so I had to re-load it on my long arm  machine for five little triangles. Oh well, it was completely worth it. I’m so happy it’s complete. Merry Christmas!

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Record Fast

My sister in law came to quilt today, so I thought I’d take a couple of pictures of the process and share what it’s like to use a long arm machine.

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This is the quilt when it is first loaded on the machine. This is the reason you need the back of the quilt and the batting to be larger.  The front will lie on them, and may travel as you quilt it. The extra space keeps you safe from going off of the edge.

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Isn’t her quilt magnificent? It is Moda’s Nest Fabric, with nesting stars.  I may have died of cuteness, but then I wouldn’t have been able to help her use the machine.  She is an unusually fast stippler. This is a large, king sized quilt, and she stippled it in less than five hours. If you are thinking you can do that, I would pause and try it first. I am pretty sure I could not do it that speed, and I’ve had a lot of practice.  That is the fastest I’ve seen one done on this machine.

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I love that she hand stitched a little inscription here. Always sign your work, friends.

 

IMG_6487This is what the edges of the quilt look like when it comes off of the long arm machine. The quilt is ready to be trimmed, and then bound. There is a line of stitching around three sides of the quilt, and the fourth side is basted together. I always trim these edges so the stitching will be inside of the quilt binding. Up in the corner of the photo is a non matching scrap I used to test tension. That’s the other reason you need the backing and the batting to be bigger.  Long arm machines need the tension adjusted if there are variances between sizes of battings, threads, etc.

Any questions? Shoot me an email, or comment.

Eye Spy Quilt

In my non-sewing life I am a realtor, and one of my awesome clients gave me a bunch of eye spy quilt kits already cut out. Well, I have some nieces who live so far away, and it drives me crazy that I only see them on the internet. I knew where this quilt had to go.

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I combined a couple of them so I could make it bigger, since they are growing girls. I made it checkered, with predominantly colored and then mostly white blocks. It worked out great.

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I played and played with how to quilt it, and finally settled happily on this floral pattern. This quilt is about 60 by 67 inches, and it took about two hours to quilt on my machine, not including time to load it and unload it.

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Then I decided on polka dot binding, because you can’t really go wrong with that.  I hope they will love it and feel a little hug from me when they wrap up in it. Thank you, Linda! Now I have to decide if I want to try to drive all that way and give it to them in person, or mail it …

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Happy (Belated) Graduation Baby Sister

Abbie Graduation Quilt-1Many, many years ago, when I was eighteen years old, my mom was pregnant with my youngest sister.  She thought it would be a great idea for me to see the baby be born, since I was likely to eventually be a mother myself. My mom had had several good experiences with epidurals, and thought that watching a calm, pain free birth might help me not be afraid when it came time to have my own kids.

When the birth night came, my mother called me to the hospital. This was her eighth child, and the doctor had given her a treatment to get her labor going.  She progressed quickly, and when I got there my mom was ready for an epidural.

While they were inserting the epidural, my mom progressed extremely rapidly.  After the epidural was in, my mom began screaming in pain, and then began bearing down to push the baby out.  I would say this was about a half hour after I got to the hospital. My baby sister made an exciting entrance into the world before the epidural took effect.

I decided that if it hurt like that, I would NOT be having children.  Six years later, I did have my own daughter. Let me tell you, it took well over an hour. Over sixteen, in fact.  But I am getting away from the real point of this post, which is that another eighteen years later, my baby sister graduated from high school.  So I made her a quilt. This is a rainbow zig zag, because she has a colorful personality. I put a zebra print flannel on the back, and bound it in black.

Unlike my sister when she was born, this quilt was very late. Thankfully, she graciously accepted it anyway.

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