Monday, May 30, 2016

Little Ruby Quilt {Jelly Roll} QAL

Little Ruby quilt along

Fat Quarter Shop and Camille Roskelley have teamed up to bring you the Little Ruby quilt pattern. It uses 2.5″ strips, or a jelly roll or two, plus the new Creative Grids 60 degree Double Strip Ruler and the Creative Grids Hexagon Trim Tool.  When Fat Quarter Shop asked if I’d like to join the quilt along, the pattern caught my eye, but the real draw was that the pattern makes TWO quilts from all the triangles you cut to make the hexagons.  Since I have TWO matching chairs in my family room, how could I resist making two quilts.
 (Quilt A is shown above, hang tight for more details on the second one)

Little Ruby QAL fabric
Part one?  Choosing fabrics! Little Ruby quilt pattern yields, what I call, a generous lap quilt, at 65″ x 72″, using two jelly rolls. You can also purchase a Little Ruby quilt kit if you really love Camille's line!

I, however, was looking for a something that fit my needs.  I needed what I'm calling my Summer Quilts.  I have always associated red, white and blue for the summer.  It always seems to start with Memorial Day in the beginning, end with Labor Day, while Fourth of July is sandwiched in the middle.

If you have been following me for a bit, this isn't the first time I've joined Fat Quarter Shop on a blog hop for one of their quilts.  Before they ever asked me to participate in one, I had already used their Simply Fat Quarters book for three patterns (Poppy, Marbles, and Thistle).  I love the simplicity of their patterns. They also seem to break up what can be, sometimes, a tedious process into a simple and enjoyable way.  

Their videos are excellent companions for those who need more visual instructions. 
 Personally?  I just think Kimberly is a doll! Here is the part one video:

My Quilt

I have had a huge crush on Kate Spain by Moda Fabrics, as of late.  In particular, the Aria line.  I'm sure you can guess it might have something to do with the butterflies. I particularly love that it had the red, white and blue I was looking for, but also a companion green.

  I couldn't resist the Aria Butterflies in Rose and Water for my backings.  The tiny flowers in  Aria Rose Abloom and Aria Navy Abloom seemed the perfect binding.

Instead of Jelly Rolls, I opted to purchase some Moda Bella White Solid by the yardage, because I needed to bulk up my background stash, and let's be honest...its cheaper to cut the strips yourself. It didn't take long to slash up my white into 54 2.5" strips.

I had a HUGE debate about matching my background with the solid strips that will become the stars, but I went out of my comfort zone and went a little wild and purchased the Aria Navy Cascade for my background.  I'm hoping another quilter chooses the other option so I can see how that plays out!

I made quick work in cutting my strips to prepare for subcutting.  Have I mentioned how much I love subcut instructions in patterns?  Fat Quarter Shop always seems to have them!

My confession.  I only purchased the Creative Grids 60 Degree Double Strip Ruler when I found out about the QAL.  I already had a Fons & Porter Hexagon Ruler, because we all know how much I love hexies!! They appear to have similar seemed silly to buy another one??  

Well.  I was wrong. WHOOPS!
My ruler is only 6.5" and the Creative Grid Hexagon Tool is 8.5".  My new ruler arrives very soon, so I have my 11 strips ready to go for when it arrives.  The hexagons seem pretty simple.  I noticed that the big key is to make sure that you are getting the seam allowances in your cut. I promise I'll add a picture as soon as the ruler arrives and I cut my hexagons. *ducks embarrassed*

Thankfully, I had the RIGHT ruler for the triangles and made quick work.   

The ruler is definitely tricky and I did a shout out for tips and advice from fellow quilters on Instagram.   A few mentioned to make sure I was putting even pressure on the ruler. I also think your orientation to the ruler is tricky.  Play around with different techniques!

If you missed the part where Kimberly flips her fabric to continue the line of triangles?  Never fear.  You just need to make sure you line up the edge of the last triangle on the ruler against the fabric edge of the new one.  The key to the triangles is that the point is "cut off" for future piecing.

With the majority of the cutting done, I will be ready to start piecing! Stay tuned!
edited to add:
Star Block Construction
Quilt Top Assembly

I've been included in a very amazing list of quilters!  I really, really suggest you go check out and see what the others are up to.  I can't wait to see the different versions of this quilt!

Melissa from Happy Quilting
Angie from Gnome Angel
Erin Cox from Why Not Sew
Andy from A Bright Corner
Pat from Pat Sloan
Peta from She Quilts a Lot
Heather from Quilt Story
Megan from Quilt Story
Amanda from Jedi Craft Girl
Sherri from A Quilting Life
Rebecca from Bryan House Quilts
Jemima from Tied with a Ribbon
Stephanie from Modern Sewciety
Brooke from Silly Mama Quilts
Carrie from Moda’s United Notions

 **I was provided with store credit to buy a portion of my supplies. Trust me, I still have some significant skin in the two quilts....All opinions are 100% my own.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Moda Love Charm {Quilted Throw Pillow}

This year is what I call the Year of the Leftovers.
After finishing Peanut's Quilt, I still had some charm squares left because the pattern doesn't use the entire pack.  My first instinct was to just cut them into 2.5" squares for my hexie stash, but then I recalled that there was a "mini" version of the original Moda Love Pattern.

And then sticking with my "use all my stash" comimttment, I found this Essex Linen in blue to use with it. I still haven't mastered working with linens and small blocks, but hey, its a process and I used up the fabric that was just going to collect dust!

I decided I would just make another fun pillow cover.  Either for my studio or Button's room.  With that in mind, I used an off white linen scrap I had and made a blue gingham binding.

I did my hidden zipper back and quilted the front with straight line quilting in the four quadrants.  

Lessons learned?  No linen backing.  And stick to matchstick quilting to hide all my small piecing sins.

Button declined it for his bedroom, even though it matches his quilt and pillows, and it is now in my studio.  Sometimes its good to have your lesson learned quilted works out and and about!

Monday, May 9, 2016

Peanut's Baby {Quilt}

My sister is having a baby very soon and his nickname is Peanut. Unlike me, she is not surprised by the gender of her babies, but keeps their names a closely guarded secret. 

I was very late in giving her other boys their quilts, Primarily Sean and Gabe in the Hat. This time I wanted to get a small quilt done before my new nephew actually arrived!

The Moda Love Quilt has popped up in my friends' Facebook feed and I also noticed quite a few being made on Instagram. It is a layer cake pattern, but includes charm and min charm patterns also.

I found my Moda Mod Century by Jenn Ski charm pack, in my stash, that I had picked up a few years ago which I paired with Kona Snow from my stash.
I love the orange, reds and blues for a boy.

The trickiest part was deciding what colors were going to be the full squares and HSTs. I grabbed my colored pencils and made quick work. After making the HSTs and playing with the layout on the design wall. 

I blinked and had a top. It pieced quickly, even when I added a small border to make it slightly bigger than the original pattern.

I loaded it up on Ole Betsy, and decided on a FMQ circle quilting based on a pantograph I saw online that I now intend to purchase for the future.

The coordinating blue flannel backing quilted and washed very nicely for a sweet new baby.

And the orange swirl by Moda gave the edges the pop and the draw to the center that I wanted.

A tiny printed label on the back and it was sent off posthaste to her. I beat the baby's arrival!

Quilt Stats
Size: 36" square
Pattern: Moda Love 
Fabrics: Mod Century Charm Pack by Moda, Orange Marble Swirl,
Kona Snow, Joann Fabrics Flannel
Quilting: Free motion circles on HQ Avante longarm

I definitely plan to use this pattern again, possibly in the Layer Cake size!

Friday, May 6, 2016

School Teacher Retirement {Memory Quilt}

" A teacher takes a hand, opens a mind, and touches a heart". 

I was recently asked by one of my boy's school to make a memory quilt for a teacher that was retiring this year.  My schedule was really, really tight, but when I heard that she had been teaching second grade there for 43 years?
I knew I had to make it happen.

Photo cred: School FB site
The staff gathered up some old tshirts and some plaid skirts from the uniform closet. 

I took a short time to make a plan and decided on relying on an old memory quilt book by Better Home and Gardens. It seemed to fit the number of t-shirts there were and a way to incorporate the plaid in the sashing, but without overwhelming it.

The one tweak I made was extending the outer stars into the border.
It was also requested that I make an embroidered block with her name and dates.

 Omni Navy by Superior threads in a floral free motion quilting seemed the "right" choice. 

Navy minky backing by Shannon Fabrics. It has become somewhat of a standard for my memory quilts. I usually hear "I love how soft the back is!"
 And the bright green binding for pop!

A printed quilt label with remnant scraps of plaid. The bible quote is from the school handbook. 

I was so excited to see that she loved it when she opened it at her retirement party.
Photo cred:  School FB site

Such a happy recipient!

Quilt Stats
Measures: Approx 50"x 50"
Pattern: Remember When from BHG Memory Quilt book
Fabric: Kona Solid Navy, Kona Kelly Green, Shannon Fabrics Navy Cuddle
Thread: Omni Thread Navy Blue by Superior Threads
Quilted: Free motion flowers on HQ Avante

Whenever I finish them, I'm always resigned in the fact that I don't particularly love making them, but I sure do love the response from the recipients, and it makes it all worth it!

Boy {Memory Quilt}

May always brings Mother's Day, flowers, and graduations!

This memory quilt was commissioned for a young man that attended the same high school and elementary schools of my sons.
His quilt includes items ranging from baby outfits and baby quilts, to Little League jersey and concert tshirts.

I had many, many ideas run through my head, but I finally settled on simple. 

I decided to unify all the colors with a gray sashing.

I quilted it with Omni Gray in a meandering pattern on my longarm.

I went with my standard minky backing. This time, in a gray to reflect the sashing on the front. 
I figure if the recipient isn't too sentimental about their clothing items made into a quilt, at least the soft backing will encourage to cuddle under them.

Black binding framed it out. 

Quilt Stats: 
Size: 82" x 82"
Fabrics: Kona Gray, Shannon Fabrics gray minky, Kona Black
Quilting: Free motion meandering on HQ 
Avante longarm.


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