You-know-where freezes over!

Oh my, did I really say that!?

Approximately 20 years ago I started learning how to piece and quilt. Almost immediately the husband announced he’d like a Double Wedding Ring Quilt.

Seriously!

Earlier this year, being aware that our 35th wedding anniversary would be happening, I thought it’d be nice to make it for “him.” For years I was afraid of the curves, but I recently (like in the last 2 years) found that I actually could sew a curve. Who knew!

So this is my practice block. I learned a few things in the process of putting it together.

  • It’s not as horrible to do as I thought it’d be.
  • Mark the 1/4″ spots like the directions say.
  • This is not a quick project.
  • Do. Not. Rush.
  • Pin.

Needless to say, this quilt won’t be done for our anniversary, which was last week.

But I do have 110 arcs made, only 188 to go. I think. I’m kind of guessing at what I need as I don’t have an actual pattern.

I printed out a couple of DWR layouts and counted everything.

So. Much. Math.

Not sure if it’s right, but I can cut more if I need to.

Since I got such a late start on this project, the husband helped me pick a background fabric to go with our Asian fabric rings. We went with navy grunge. I haven’t gotten to that part yet, but I’m excited to see how it looks. Hoping it’s as striking as I imagine.

Since 2000 we have often gone to Shipshewana for our anniversary, and this year was no different. I didn’t take as many pictures as usual, but I did get a few pics of the quilts hanging up at Yoder’s. They always display great quilts.

I love the border on this one. The colors are so pretty.

I may have shared this one before. It was featured in a Quilt Sampler magazine in the last few years.

I love this one! The quilting is outstanding and the striped fabric in the blocks really makes them pop!

And this is a very nice sampler itself. I think all the fabrics are solids. Appliqué adds so much to a quilt, doesn’t it.

Ok, it’s possible that this one makes you go, “What?” But after looking at it a bit more, and driving around Shipshewana at night, this is much like the reflector on Amish buggies. So my initial reaction has been amended. Now I think the use of the different orange colors is very clever. The “Slow Life” name should have given me a clue.

Who doesn’t love a BIG STAR QUILT!? So fun!

I thought this one was pretty cool. Covers from the Shipshewana Quilt Festival for the last several years. So cool with the solids on black.

Finally, we also spent a bit of time in Middlebury. It was ridiculously hot so being in the shops was such a treat. The Essenhaus has some adorable shops all within walking distance of the bakery/restaurant.

Outside of the building with the quilt shop is this awesome barn quilt.

You will see these all over the place in the area, if you’re paying attention. I love that we got a pic of this one this time.

Twenty years ago I wouldn’t have thought about actually making a DWR quilt. That’s how it is when one is new to a craft.

I’ve made hundreds (seriously, I counted recently!) of quilts, some good, some horribly, HORRIBLY bad, some awesome……every single one was part of the learning process. As the skills change, as the shortcuts are learned and discarded, as the confidence grows, one starts to think……”I think I can.”

Two years ago I sewed a curve, with no pins. It worked. It pressed beautifully.

“I think I can.”

So something new begins.

I’ll update as we go!

Have a great weekend, friends.

LL

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“Your Chicago Garden”

About a month ago I finished this quilt for a dear friend who is moving away. During that month it got harder and harder to think about letting the quilt go….because I love it.

But not as much as I love my friend, and she needs this quilt so she remembers we love her.

I used the Little Ruby jelly roll that I’ve been hoarding for some time. So long, that it was QUITE CHALLENGING finding yardage for the borders! Pretty much it was “I’ll take what I can get.” But I absolutely love ❤️ love this quilt. It’s bright and cheerful, just like my friend. Except for the green border and the red one, it’s ALL jelly roll.

I used the leftover bits for a scrappy binding, and the small squares for the second border in there.

I quilted it with the all over meandering flower pattern. I love ❤️ love the texture it creates. Once this is washed, it will be so fluffy!

Lookit the back!

Isn’t that something! It was lots of fun to quilt. I think I snuck a leaf or three in the quilting, but it just wasn’t working for me, so three is all I did.

There, the husband held it up for me so we could see all the binding, and all the everything.

We named it “Your Chicago Garden.” Our friend is moving to Arkansas so it seemed appropriate. She leaves behind friendships, children who love her and a church family that will certainly feel the void. She is so special to so many.

Thank you, Cindy, for your kindnesses over the years.

LL

The Color Purple

Yesterday I attended the baby shower for a sweet premie baby girl. Her great grandma is my mom’s cousin, so we are all related!

The quilt on the left was made for the great grandma. The baby is her first great grand, born to her first granddaughter. Many years ago I was the flower girl in her wedding, wearing a peach colored dress with wide sleeves. It was fun being so dressed up.

This quilt, named Gorgeous Great Grandma was fun to make and easy. I did the disappearing nine patch pattern, using part of two charm packs, a white and a print. I quilted it with loose swirls all over.

The tumbler quilt was made for the baby’s grandma. I remember when SHE was born! This one also used parts of two charm packs, sticking with polka dots and lots of negative space. I quilted it with echoed arches, pretty close together. The backing and border fabric brings some butterflies and jazzy flowers to the otherwise “plain” quilt. (Puppy boy seems to prefer this one.) I called this one Grandma’s Moment.

The quilt for the baby was really fun and easy to make. Rail fence is a great pattern for babies! It looked nice, but when I added the butterflies, and the very simple outline stitch, it just made it look great. I quilted this with the flower that I’ve been so enthralled with lately. It will be so comfy and sweet once it’s washed a few times. Of course I called this one Butterfly Kisses.

The labels before I sewed them on. Labels are the only place I do any handwork these days. It works for me and it’ll do.

See, those bindings don’t look awful.

The baby is at 4 pounds right now. It is amazing how advanced medicine is now, isn’t it?

I’ll be sharing another quilt in a day or two. It’s a fave, so watch for it!

LL

“This is not the quilt you’re looking for…”

Some time ago I put this Moda Love quilt pattern together using Star Wars fabrics. The husband seems to require a quilt for everything he likes, so this would be perfect for his birthday. I had less than a week to baste, quilt and finish this huge (74″ square) thing!

And I did, but man, did it take a long time to quilt! Some of it was a lot of fun to do, like the dark blue areas. I quilted wavy, pointy lines radiating from the center.

Some of it was horrible! Trying to do the dot to dot on such a big triangle was a mistake, but “we don’t become a better quilter by ripping it out” so I did them all. Badly, but the same.

I realized today, while I was taking pictures. That the backing is not going the way I want it to. Seriously, does one not check such things while one is laying the whole thing out?!

Apparently not. (Eye roll)

The quilting that I think is the coolest thing, and the reason I kept putting this project off for months, is the very center.

It’s the Death Star.

I know, right? And of course months ago when I asked him what he thought of that idea, he thought it was awesome! Then I got nervous about actually doing it, so I put it all aside. It’s not perfect, but the general idea is there. And it wasn’t as hard as I thought it’d be. Imagine that.

I used some Millennium Falcon yardage for the back. It’s super cool, but like I said, not quite right.

See what I mean?

The name of the quilt absolutely cracks me up. Be sure to do the hand motion while you say it.

See! Hilarious.

(You have to be an old school Star Wars fan to get it…)

On the rest of the quilt I did loops. Not fancy, but it will hold the layers together, and that is the point.

The Moda pattern was easy to do, but I think next time I’d use MUCH smaller pieces. Quilting such a large project on my machine is just harder than it used to be. I should probably start lifting weights.

So, the husband liked the quilt and had a happy birthday. Really, I wouldn’t trade him for anything.

May the force be with you.

LL

“Covered”

I had decided a couple weeks ago to make a quilt for a dear man who recently found out he’s got cancer. Other things kept coming up, but I finally made time this weekend and finished it up.

Using a jelly roll the husband got me several years ago, Melbourne Ocean, I sewed the strips together, side by side. I started with a light to dark layout, but it was a little flat so I switched it around some and that really helped.

I did sew “down one side and up the other” to avoid that bowing thing. I used that pretty creamy white for two sashings and borders. This quilt ended up quite long, but I wasn’t about to take it apart and redo.

I found a fun Tim Holtz fabric, Dictionary, for the backing and I just love it! It’s fun to read and very soft. This pattern is one I’ve seen all over Pinterest and in tutorials, and it is easy peasy. After cutting a 7 inch and 6 inch strip the length of the large strip set, flipping one so the dark fabrics are at the top, adding the dashing and borders, it was ready to baste.

Because I pin baste, it was a workout! Taping the backing to the floor, laying batting and then the top so they’re nice and flat, then pinning…..yes, I’m always a little pooped after this part.

But also excited to get to the quilting! Since this is for a man, I didn’t want to do swirly curls and flowers. Not that a man wouldn’t like those things, just because I think of them as a little girly. (When I make the quilt, I get to decide.) The first thing that came to mind was pebbles (yes, I know they’re round-ish, but they aren’t girly.) but most pebbles I’ve seen are on the small side. I certainly didn’t want to do a small design on this large quilt!

So I enlarged the pebbles. They’re rocks!

I’d say the biggest rock is 3 inches around. And they aren’t all round, some are oval. I think it worked on this very liney quilt.

So, as usual, not perfect, but made with love.

The binding was scrappy, it seems to be my new thing! I love love love using every bit of the jelly roll fabrics! I added a couple strips from the backing fabric too and it worked out just right.

It may be hard to see but in the creamy white fabric I quilted the wishbone design in the sashing places, and then some straight-ish lines in the borders. I was pretty happy with the finished quilt.

My friend Nancy, pictured on the right will deliver the quilt to her husband today. I was just happy she made it to our class today to take it to him.

I named it “Covered.” As I told Nancy, Tom can be covered with the quilt, and he is covered with love and many prayers. They are a very special pair and our church family cares for them a lot.

And like I always do, I’ve started another quilt for a baby. They are fast and fun to sew.

Disappearing nine patch blocks! And I only used 2/3 of the charm pack! The prettiest ones, but still, leftover fabrics are just my cuppa tea!

Have a good week friends!

LL

Baby Elephant Quilt

No, I didn’t make a quilt for a baby elephant. I was asked to make a quilt for a baby boy and the theme was animals, like elephants!

I had three strips leftover from a roll poly that I used some time ago that had elephants on them! All I had to do was find light blue, gray orange and navy fabrics to go with them.

Oddly enough, I think everything worked out pretty well. I was able to use some of the navy from the Bear quilt I recently made, so that was very economical if I do say so myself. Every fabric was from the stash, so that is just a WIN WIN!

Both of the parents to be were happy with this quilt, which I named Elephant Parade. The pattern is the Baby Bargello from Jordan Fabrics. There is a video and a free download of the pattern. This is the second one I’ve made in the last couple of months, I think it’s my new go-to for baby quilts.

Got a couple other things I can’t share yet, so until next time….

Have a great weekend, friends.

LL

“Wordplay”

Seriously, do you know anyone who “doesn’t want their present from their fave aunt” ON their birthday IN December? Due to circumstances beyond any of our control, that’s what happened. Today my niece finally decided to open her present!

Love & be loved from the book, By the Block by Siobhan Rogers. This quilt is why I bought the book. Love it! I think she likes it too. It’s hard to surprise people any more, they usually know what they’re getting but not specifically what they’re getting.

I had gotten the fabric in a FQ bundle from Massdrop some time ago. I often send pics of fabrics to my sister because “she cares” and my niece saw it. She said something like, “oh, I want that.” And this is funny because I asked my sister if she thought Jess would like it. Then she told me what she’d said. Meant to be was never truer.

I pretty much free motion quilted it to death. But what fun, right! It’s far from perfect, but it’s got a little bit of everything, from swirls to pebbles, wishbones to flowers, leaves to hearts.

I tried to be very intentional in the gray letters, so they’d stand out, but I don’t know that it really made much difference. I used gray thread on the front and the back. The “glitzy” fabrics had some gray so I think it worked.

For the back I used a cute polka dot in a minty green color. The quilting shows up big time there! Yes, all the mistakes and the good stuff too.

See, not perfect. But definitely made with love for my niece. I had a blast making this quilt for her. The pattern was awesome and adorable and so easy to follow. The fabrics were perfect for this quilt. I used a fun gray with text that I’ve had for a while. Lovin’ it! The binding is also gray with text on it, a little darker than the letters.

I named the quilt “Wordplay” mostly because of all the text fabrics. I also may or may not have put a message or two in the quilting…..

This quilt has been completed for a while, but now that it is finally officially gifted and received, the blog on it is completed too.

I’ve also started another gift….

And that’s all I can share for now.

Have a good week, friends.

LL