Wednesday, September 8, 2021

What I've Been Working On Lately


After time spent cleaning up and re-organizing in my sewing space (you can see my destash sale fabric here), I was ready to get back to a quilting project.  Flowers for Emma was starting to take on UFO status.  I began this project about two years ago as my portable project but have not had much need for portability over the past 18 months and have focused on machine sewn quilts instead.  But only the hexie flowers are sewn by hand in this project and with them completed, it morphs into a machine project.  


I made the flowers above while watching The Flight Attendant on HBO Max and The Pursuit of Love on Amazon Prime. (Both are fairly entertaining; of the two, I preferred The Pursuit of Love.)  All of the fabric for the flowers, except the yellow centers, are from various Fig Tree Designs for Moda fabric lines.  Then it's over to the sewing machine where I use a blind stitch or tiny zigzag to applique the flowers to the pieced background.  I've been trying both stitches and think they work equally well.  You have to look very closely to see the stitches and I think they will become even less visible after quilting.



The original pattern calls for 35 blocks, set in five columns of seven blocks each.  I'd like to enlarge it but not sure yet if it will be six by eight (48 blocks) or seven by nine (63 blocks).  In the meantime, I plod along.


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Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Cleaning Up My Sewing Room - Destash Sale - Robyn Pandolph for Moda Fabric


I started cleaning up my sewing room today and whoa!  There's a lot to do!  One problem is that I have more fabric than I have storage capacity.  I'm letting some of it find a new home in a destash sale.  Today, it is all fabric designed by Robyn Pandolph and produced for Moda Fabrics.  



I made my quilt Christmas Day (above) with Robyn Pandolph designed fabrics.  (I think the pattern is called Brand New Day; it is by Carrie Nelson/Miss Rosie's Quilt Co.)  I really loved these fabric collections, I still do, but I don't think I will use them any time soon, so they need a new home.

I'm selling the fabric in nine lots, listed below.  If you would like anything shown, use the comment box to let me know which lot and indicate your zip code and your method of payment:  Zelle, Venmo, or Paypal.  I'll send you an invoice and put the package in the mail once paid.  



Lot A - 4 yards, from the Morning Glory collection by Robyn Pandolph for Moda.  The green background color came out most accurately in the picture in Lot C, below.  $30 plus shipping.



Lot B - 2 yards from the Sugar House line by Thimbleberries.  This is not a Robyn Pandolph design but coordinates perfectly.  The green background color came out most accurately in Lot C, below.  $16 plus postage.



Lot C - 4 yards in total; 1 yard of each fabric shown (top to bottom) from the Morning Glory line, cream with rose buds, green with rose buds, green floral tone-on-tone, green floral.  $30 plus shipping.



Lot D - 4 pieces from the Morning Glory and Aubrey Rose lines, including (left to right) 1.25 yards of red roses on cream, 1 yard of red and cream flowers on green, 1 yard of the same print on cream, and 4 yards by 24 inches wide (perfect for borders) of red flowers on green tonal stripe background.  $40 plus postage.



Lot E - Mostly from Folk Art Christmas II line - from top, 1.75 yards by 26: wide red roses on cream (plus some extra scraps of this print), 1 yard of red flowers on green background, 3/4 yard of green leaves on red background, and 3/4 yard of red on cream tiny floral print.  $27 plus postage



Lot F - 5 pieces ranging from just over 1/4 yard to 3/4 yard in size, almost 3 yards total.  From the Aubrey Rose, Rosehill Manor and Folk Art Christmas II lines.  $27 plus postage.



Lot G - 2.5 yards of the small floral on the left, 1.12 yards of the green check, 1/2 yard of the red check, 1/2 yard of the red tonal on the right.  $35 plus postage.



Lot H - 3 yards of the dark red floral tone-on-tone and 1.75 yards of the ecru floral tone-on-tone, both from the Morning Glory Line.  $37 plus postage.



Lot I - Lots of pieces, not all shown, ranging in size from 1/2 yard to pieces roughly the size of a layer cake square.  2 lbs. of fabric in total and perfect for a scrappy look project.  $35 plus postage.  

Keep in mind that mailing fabric can get pricey because of the weight.  Figure $7 to $22, depending on your location (I am in New Jersey).  


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Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Rainbow Connection #LittleBlocks365 Quilt


The quilt I made with my Little Blocks 365 is back from the quilter and I bound it - not a big job given if is only 43" square.  


I'm calling it Rainbow Connection.  I started with a fat quarter bundle of solids and made the blocks gradually, selecting from the blocks released each week in the Little Blocks 365 program.  Because my setting used only 56 blocks, I did not need all 365 blocks in the program and could finish before the end of the year.  Note, I adapted my setting from a quilt made by Brigette Heitland of Zen Chic.


I had it longarm quilted by the folks at Olde City Quilts in Burlington, NJ.   The quilting pattern is a panto or edge-to-edge design of large paisley-like feathers in white thread.


The quilting pattern is not too much on the blocks and shows up really well in the white borders.  



The back is solid white because I was afraid any print or darker color might show through to the front in the white borders.  Did you know that Kona comes in wide widths (60" and 108") in a variety of colors?  The 60" wide version was perfect for the back of this wall hanging size quilt.



I really enjoyed making these blocks and am tempted to start another set using a different color combination.  But that will probably wait until late this year as there are some other projects I need to finish.  And first I need to clean and declutter my sewing room - it looks like a cyclone blew through!

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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

A Scrapbook of Quilts #pillowalong

Yes, I'm still here!  And working on this and that, but not doing quite as much sewing as I was doing this time last year.  I do have a little finish though.

It's this decorative pillow I made using the directions in the "Pirouette" chapter in the book A Scrapbook of Quilts by Joanna Figueroa and Carrie Nelson.  I went totally scrappy and used my stash of leftover 3 Sisters fabrics from various quilts I've made.  It goes with many of the quilts I use on our bed and looks great IMO.  The finished quilt is 16 by 20 inches.


And you need to add A Scrapbook of Quilts to your quilt book collection if you have not done so already.  It is really a marvelous book, not just for the projects in the book but also for all the tips and tricks sprinkled throughout and the writing style.  The day it arrived, I spent the evening reading it and was well entertained.  If your LQS doesn't have this book, you can buy it directly from The Fat Quarter shop, here.


But back to the pillow.  The central panel is half-square triangles sewn together then banded top and bottom with another fabric.  I quilted it using my walking foot, in the ditch on the pieced section then straight out into the borders.



I quilted the back in parallel horizontal lines, using the width of the presser foot to space them apart.  


I washed the pillow after I finished it because I'd used a chalk marker to mark the first line and it was being stubborn about not brushing out.  The washing machine took care of that though, and gave the pillow that soft, crinkled look.


I put a zipper in the bottom seam so I can wash the cover easily.  I basted that seam first (before sewing the other sides together) and inserted the zipper centered, like you would do for a zipper in the back of a dress.  It is easy to do (as long as you have a zipper foot for your sewing machine) and the instructions come with the zipper.  Carrie Nelson inserts zippers the same way she does for a zipper bag and it looks pretty easy.  She has a video with directions on YouTube; you can find it here.

I think I'll be making more pillows.  But I am so tempted to make the quilt version of the "Pirouette" design using my Fig Tree scraps.  And I have two hand sewing projects in the works, plus I have three quilts to bind.  But Thelma told me binding is winter work so...


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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Little Blocks 365 Wall Hanging


I have a finished flimsy.  It's the wall hanging I've been making from the Little Blocks 365 sew along.  In this sew along, the organizer releases seven blocks each week; keep up and you will have 365 blocks at the end of the year.  But as my chosen setting requires only 56 blocks, I've been selectively sewing from the blocks released so far and have enough for my finish.  

I started with a charm pack of solid colors from Michael Miller, quickly saw it would not be enough fabric, and added a fat quarter bundle.  



A few weeks ago, I was here:


And now I have this finished top.  


It was hard to get a good picture as no one was available to hold it up so it is stuck to my design boards but they are not quite big enough for this 42 inch square top.  (Ignore those gray-ish smudges, it is just water from when I steam pressed the top right before taking the photos and they've since disappeared.)

The block layout is from Zen Chic; you can see her original quilt here.  Brigitte Heitland of Zen Chic participated in the Moda Blockheads 3 sew along and this is the setting she used for her finished blocks.  However, her blocks were 6 inches and made a quilt 81 inches square.  My blocks are 3 inches and the top is 42 inches square.  

I'm very happy with my top, I just need to get it quilted.  Given that the sew along has more than six months to go, with more than 180 blocks yet to be released, I am thinking of making more for a second wall hanging.  I just need another creative setting suitable for these eclectic blocks.  I am thinking of using this selection of solid color fabrics that Kona put together in a color combination they call "Dublin."



But I need a rectangular setting that will work in my kitchen space, ideal for quilts that are 35-40 inches wide and 50-60 inches long.  Any suggestions?

I think these tiny 3 inch blocks are perfect for solids and blenders because you don't lose any of the fabric design when you cut them into tiny pieces (many of the pieces in these blocks are smaller than my finger nails).  I found another fat quarter set in my stash, this collection is called "Speckled."



If you are interested in doing something similar, the Fat Quarter Shop has a broad selection of fat quarter bundles of solids.  They have bundles that match the colors in fabric lines by various designers, like this "Me & My Sister" bundle, as well as other themes like "pinks" and "birds of paradise" (I particularly like this one).  In case you are interested, I used 11 fat quarters in my top (though did not completely use up any of them), as well as a few pieces from the charm pack for contrast.  And the blocks that include white use Kona white (which I also used for the border) and some scraps of a small text print.

There is not enough time to take advantage of the all great fabric available now!

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Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Little Blocks 365 Update

I've been working on my blocks from the Little Blocks 365 quilt along.  These are 3 inch blocks constructed using the foundation paper piecing method.  The organizer, Sentimental Stitches,  releases seven new blocks every Friday and after a year, you will have 365 blocks.  I'm enjoying this project, though foundation paper piecing is not my favorite method so I have pieced some the simpler blocks using traditional piecing.  

This is where I was at my last update:




This is where I am today:


Sorry for that glare; the sun was shining in the window behind my "design boards."  To keep organized, I'm working on my blocks in rainbow color order, currently tackling yellow and green.  I only need 56 blocks for my setting so I don't make every block released, just those that especially appeal to me.  And I've subbed in a few favorite blocks from other sources, like the heart.  

I need seven more blocks to complete my planned setting, though I will probably make more so I can be picky and just include the best ones in the final quilt.  I'm getting a lot of enjoyment out of this quilt along and may join another next year.  


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Monday, May 17, 2021

Do You Follow My Blog By Email?


Do you follow by email?  The Blogger platform I use advised that the Feedburner subscription service will be discontinued in July, 2021.  To continue following along with my musings on quilt making, you can access my blog directly; the URL is quiltingonmainstreet.blogspot.com.  Or, the way I access the blogs I follow is via Bloglovin'.  You set up an account (free) at bloglovin.com, then list all the blogs you want to follow.  Whenever you access the site, the new posts from the blogs you follow will populate automatically and it is so easy.

If any of you have another easy way to access your favorite blogs, please tell us all in the comments below.

I hope you will continue to join me!

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Thursday, May 13, 2021

A Finished Quilt - Snowflake Pattern by Modern Handcraft


Pieced, quilted, and bound...it's Snow Day!


I pieced this quilt at the beginning of the year (you can read more about that here) then had it quilted at Olde City Quilts in Burlington, NJ, a shop that is local-ish to me.  I chose the design from among the many they offer (it's a pantograph).  The thread is Wedgewood blue and shows up against the dark blue background and the white snowflake without having excessive contrast.  I'm very happy with it.  






The design is off-season for now but come January, this quilt will be showcased in the quilt hanging spot in my kitchen.  The design is by Modern Handcraft, a pattern called SnowflakeThe original design creates a quilt that is 60" by 72" but I wanted a smaller quilt for my kitchen spot which is best for a quilt that is 35-40" wide.  No problem; the pattern is essentially a mosaic and I just reduced the size of the basic square unit to be two-thirds of the original size.  So my quilt is 40" by 48" with all the detail of original, just reduced in size.

It is an extremely well-written pattern, very easy to follow.  In fact, I think a beginner could do it though accuracy is key to get the graphic look of the snowflake as angles must come together perfectly.  

Now, back to my quilt alongs!

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Friday, May 7, 2021

Trip Around the World - A Finished Quilt


Pieced, quilted, and bound... I finished the Trip Around the World quilt that I pieced last summer.  The weather has been so good lately so I took this photo outside in our back yard.




It is a generous throw size, 64" by 72" and I bound it using the same fabric that is in the outer most "ring" of squares, the teal green tone-on-tone fabric.  You can read more about how I pieced this quilt in my earlier post on it, here.

This is the last quilt that Karen Thompson quilted for me, before she retired from longarm quilting for clients.  She quilted it with a curvy swirl panto design.  



I like swirling designs like this one for their softening effect on the angular patches.




I made the quilt top last summer when I was in use-the-stash mode so almost all of the fabric came from my stash, even the backing.  I did a fabric pull to coordinate with the colors in our family room, using the floral throw pillow as the key inspiration (the curtains in the room are made of the same floral fabric).  I wanted this particular quilt to be used in our family room and to complement the decor there but even when I'm not trying to coordinate with a room's decorating scheme, I find this method of selecting fabrics for a quilt to be quite effective.  




If you have a fabric you like, select your quilting fabrics based on the colors/shades in the inspiration fabric, in the ratios they are used in the print, and you pretty much can't go wrong.  You don't even have to use the inspiration fabric in the quilt itself, but just as a guide to selecting the fabrics you will use.  




Mr. Main Street is trying to hold the quilt up to get a picture.  The corgis saw the camera and thought they were supposed to be the models; you can see the paws of one of them (along with the mister's sock feet) under the bottom edge.  



Well, I have even more binding to do.


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Tuesday, May 4, 2021

APQ Quilt Along Update


I have all 30 blocks for Square Dance, this year's American Patchwork & Quilting quilt along Project, finished and sewn together with the sashing, posts, and inner border.


I tried several different arrangements for the blocks and liked this rainbow-ish layout best.  But it did cause me to rethink my choice of border fabric.  I made the blocks from 30 pieces taken from the bundle of fat eighth cuts shown on the right in the photo below (all from assorted Laundry Basket Quilts lines for Andover Fabrics).  The large floral print on the left was supposed to be the border.



I love that print but I don't love it with the assortment of blocks; the blocks need a border fabric that is less busy, that will provide a frame but not overpower the blocks, while the border fabric would be ideal with a simpler assortment of blocks that will not fight for attention with the big floral print.  So... on to Plan B.  I ordered a simple tone-on-tone print in dark navy for the border to audition with the blocks.  While I wait for it to arrive, I will work on some other things.  I have several quilts to bind, plus my handwork "portable" projects.


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