Friday, January 28, 2022

Bachelor Button Quilt Pillow

I just finished a UFO and am so happy with the way it turned out!

On impulse, I bought a kit from Sweet Treasures Quilts in December 2020, to make a block called Bachelor Button designed by White Barn Quilts that could be turned into a pillow.  The fabrics in the kit are from the Holliberry line for Moda by Cory Yoder.  I knew I wouldn't get it done for Christmas 2020 and I ended up piecing the block in February 2021, then put it aside to finish later.  

I didn't finish it for Christmas 2021, so officially an UFO!  But it is ready for Christmas 2022 now.

I had the finished block but it needed to be quilted and then turned into a pillow.  I quilted the block in a grid pattern using the walking foot for my Bernina machine.  Someone with more free motion skill could do some quilting that would better enhance the design, but I managed to keep the lines straight and am happy with how it came out.

The kit included fabric for the pillow back and the binding.  Binding provides an effect similar to piping the edge of a pillow.  I like the look in this case and that's how I wanted to finish it  but it meant I could not do my usual thing of inserting an invisible zipper in the bottom seam.  

The directions were for an envelope back but I bought a zipper and did a lapped zipper closure on the pillow back.  It is fairly unobtrusive with this patterned fabric.  

If you would like to try a zipper like this, there is a good tutorial here and Sherri from A Quilting Life has a YouTube video how-to here.  

I filled the pillow with a Fjadrar pillow insert from Ikea; they are filled with feathers and I find them more firm and comfortable than the poly inserts.  But they do come in only two sizes:  20" square and 26" square.  I actually prefer to buy my pillow inserts a little bigger than the pillow case so they fill more firmly but I think the 26" would be too big; this pillow is 20" square.

So, a UFO taken care of and a finish ready for Christmas.  

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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

New Project for 2022 - Little Blocks 4.5 Sampler Quilt

Last year, I participated in a sampler quilt block program called Little Blocks 365, receiving block patterns by email each week to make seven foundation paper pieced blocks.  I used solid fabrics in rainbow colors and gradually, my collection of blocks grew...

...until I had enough for a quilt.

I didn't make all 365 blocks because I did not need them all for my chosen layout and wall hanging size quilt.  I enjoyed the process so when Sentimental Stitches offered a new program for 2022, offering "not quite so many" and "not quite so little" blocks, I joined.  This program is called Little Blocks 4.5 because the blocks finish at 4.5 inches square.  This program includes 156 blocks, delivered three per week.  I have three possible layouts in mind, none of which require all the blocks, so I can pick and choose or I can finish early.  

I'm using Christmas fabrics from my stash for this project, including fabric leftover from Jingle All The Way.  So far, so good!

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Friday, January 7, 2022

Jingle All The Way - A Finished Quilt

I've got a finished quilt to show off.  I'm calling it Jingle All The Way, after the fabric line I used to make it.

I started this quilt back in late 2020, knowing I would not finish it in time for Christmas.  Well, I put the last stitch in the binding yesterday so it's done plenty early for Christmas 2022!

I used a pattern that was in an issue of American Patchwork & Quilting.  It was designed by Sherri McConnell of A Quilting Life and she sells the pattern as Coastal on her Etsy site.  The fabric is a collection called Jingle All The Way by Nancy Halvorsen.  I've had it in my stash for ages, though you can still find some online.

Having the right fabric for the plain alternating blocks is crucial for this pattern in my opinion.  It requires something that works with the prints used for the stars but still lets the stars take center stage.  I chose an open, swirly pantograph pattern for the quilting, done by Olde City Quilts.

The quilt is 69" square, great for a throw quilt to use on the couch while watching TV.  It will be especially cozy because I backed it with flannel.  I happened upon this flannel sheet while leafing through a catalog sent by Garnet Hill; the red and green polka dots coordinate so well with the colors on the front of the quilt.  I ordered a flat sheet (I think it was queen bed size).  I washed it and dried in on "high" to get any shrinkage out of the way before I took it be quilted as I was concerned that the flannel might shrink quite a bit more than quilting cotton.  I'm really pleased with how it came out and the back is so soft!  This is also a fairly cost effective way to back a quilt as the queen size sheet is only $49.

I'm tempted to make this quilt again and am sure I will once I came across the right fabric collection.

In the meantime, I'm putting the leftover fabric to use in my first project of 2022, but that's a story for another day.

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