“Nurturer”

This is what I should have named this quilt. But when one wants to get it out the door and gifted, one goes with the obvious.

Betsy’s Garden

In March Pat Sloan offered a free pattern challenge called March Hope. The plan was to make a block every day for the month of March. Ask anyone and they’ll tell you, I can’t stand doing one thing a day for a month.

So I made them all and finished the top right before the end of March. I knew I’d be gifting this quilt to my friend, so I made sure to free motion the meandering flower all over it. It will crinkle so beautifully when it’s washed.

Flower meander & scrappy binding.

You’d think it’d be a challenge to find so many fabrics in this pretty color, but not in my stash! When it the time came for the binding, I used most of the scraps leftover from making the blocks. Since they blend together so well, it’s not super obnoxious like it can be sometimes.

The backing was simple and sweet.

I absolutely loved using this simple diamond print for the backing. The quilting shows really nicely on it and the colors are also on the front of the quilt, so it matches!

Lookit that binding!

It just warms my heart to gift quilts to dear friends. I dropped it off this afternoon and being the curious type, she opened it all up right away! Her response was, “It’s a year round garden!” And it is.

So much fun!

Social distancing has really changed the way we do things. Gift giving, which should include lots of hugging, has taken a real hit. But it’s the thought that counts, and I think I’ll keep making quilts for people.

Have a good week, friends.

LL

Oh, How I Love Pink

Recently I gifted this quilt to a sweet friend. In some ways, it was one of those that is hard to give up. The simple pattern makes the fabrics truly become the stars of this quilt. I love it. But I know that my friend loves it too.

Pink & White & Red all over.

A while back I purchased a jelly roll that was pink, white and red. More recently my MIL purchased one with floral designs in the same colors. Since there were duplicates, and the designer of both JR’s was Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts, we traded some!There were a few strips we traded back, but I think the whole deal worked out beautifully.

Swirl hook quilting.

I quilted this one on with the swirl hook design. It’s one that is pretty and simple to do. I also used Aurifil thread on this quilt, first time ever! Oh my goodness, it’s really worth it. So much fits on the bobbin and I hardly made a dent in the spool. So I am in the process of “out with the old, in with the new” thread. It’ll take a while, but that’s okay.

Backing….

I used a pretty pink flower print for the back, and I think for the binding too. I can’t sew the binding on by hand any more, so it is machine done. Even though it doesn’t look perfectly perfect, it’s going to stay on!

The bow.

This was delivered on a cold, snowy day to my sweet friend. She was so surprised and even speechless. Just that reaction, with her hand on her heart, smiling and saying, “oh, oh, oh my.”

This is why I gift quilts.

Have a good day, friends.

LL

Deer Christmas

After not really finishing much for a while, I’ve given a sweet Christmas quilt to my brother and his family.

Deer Christmas Quilt

While the title is not original, it’s perfect for the family. Before my niece was born three years ago, we had a sweet little shower for her mama with just the family ladies.

The theme of the shower was “Our Little Deer.” We had a woodsy pale yellow theme going on, it was so pretty.

Anyway, it seemed very appropriate to give them this quilt. I used a fun Rudolph print for the backing and a red and white stripe for binding, which just makes it ZING!

It’s fun to give quilty gifts at Christmas time. It’s fun any time of the year, but right now it just does my heart good.

Spread joy wherever you can, friends.

Merry Christmas.

LL

Thing One & Thing Two

Sometimes it’s too easy to name a quilt. Especially one for a little guy who likes heroes. So, not the most original name in the world, but just about right.

Superhero Inc Quilt

I actually pieced this several years ago and then put it aside. I had made two of them and was so tired of looking at the fabrics. I had also made a quilt for the husband with these same fabrics, so YES. Very tired of the fabrics.

I quilted these 5 inch squares with an all over loopy design. It didn’t take long since the quilt is kid sized. I used some fun scrappy binding, making sure I didn’t use “girly” colors. It really turned out fun.

Labels’ R Us

The quilt is now on its way to the birthday boy. I used a fun flannel for the backing, so he’d be nice and toasty since winter is upon us.

In other sewing news today…. I finished a small quilt that’s been in the basket for a couple months.

Ribbons Pattern by Donna Jordan

This is my favorite pattern for layer cakes. And this is the third one I’ve made. The previous two were made using a limited color palette, so they look completely different. Anyway, for this I used Moda fabrics by Lella Boutique. I made the border a bit different, cutting the squares into “tumbler” shapes. (Like a thimble.)

Sometimes one does this as a design element, but not me. This fabric line isn’t recent and none is available anywhere, so one uses what one has and makes it work.

Meandering flower quilting

I had hoped to use a different quilting design but this one is so easy and natural for me. And the fabrics have flowers so it works.

The front of the quilt is lovely with the texture of the flowers, but the back is gorgeous.

Back of Ribbons quilt

I wish I had better lighting. The backing fabric is plain but not boring. The flowers looks so pretty, IMO.

I don’t have any other plans for this quilt, now that it’s finished. I have an idea of who I’d like to have it, but I’m going to wait a while and think on it some more.

Such pretty colors

I hope you all have a good weekend, friends.

LL

“Sugar & Spice”

And everything nice! That’s a perfect description of my friend. There’s much more to her than that, she is very dear to me and others who know and love her. Today is her birthday so I gave her this quilt.

Sugar & Spice

This is a free pattern by Donna Jordan, at Jordan Fabrics called Galaxy. The one I made, using gray, white and cream looks totally different than hers. I backed this quilt with a pretty pink fabric, because it needed some sweet color and PINK is my go to!

The label and backing.

This quilt actually has it all. A many-pieced block, sashing and two borders. I put the top together in the Spring, when the quarantine lockdown began. Then I put it aside, waiting for Nancy’s birthday.

The block has lots of pieces but if I remember right, it really goes together easily.

One block….

I didn’t get all matchy matchy when I put everything together, which was hard for me. Too many possibilities of “sames” ending up right by each other!

It was very freeing though and I was happy with the result.

I quilted “cursive L’s” (also known as loops) all over the quilt. It’s not perfect, but it IS finished and in the hands of my friend. I hope it keeps her toasty this winter.

Have a great day, friends.

LL

“One for you & One for me”

Both of these quilts are favorites at my house. I absolutely HAD to make the pattern as soon as I saw it at Jordan Fabrics. It is called Ribbons and uses a layer cake bundle. I’d been saving my Bee Inspired LC for a while, so since it’d be for me, I used it! I mean, how often does one find fabric that needs to stay at our own house, right?!

Bee Inspired Ribbons Quilt

This pattern uses every bit of the layer cake, which I think is awesome. Of course since I “saved” this fabric for so long, borders required a trip to Shipshewana. When one waits a year or more to use a jelly roll or other precut, one has difficulty finding fabrics from the same line. Luckily the designer has created several versions of Bee lines, so I lucked out big time. I believe she has another one releasing in the next several months too. (Yay, can’t wait!)

Backing of Bee Quilt

While in Shipshewana I picked up a few yards of this fun fabric for the backing of something. It happened that my Bee quilt was the perfect size for it. Yay. I didn’t finish this quilt until just a few months ago during the quarantine.

My husband suggested I finish some tops, so this was one of the first. I quilted it with “swirl hooks” because I’d just done another with the floral meander and needed a change. It, like all my quilts, isn’t perfect but it’s finished, and that’s always a good thing.

Last year I wanted to make another quilt for my husband for his birthday, but I needed it to be kinda easy. In looking through my layer cakes I found a group of Japanese fabrics. I don’t remember buying it, so it’s quite possible he gave it to me as a gift. It was the perfect thing, since I knew I loved the Ribbons pattern, and he’d said my (then) bee quilt top was cool.

Love

I really like how his turned out too. The colors are pretty together and even though it’s “pretty,” he uses it every time he watches tv.

I’ve found that a limited color palette works the best for this pattern. It’ll work with a larger one, but limiting colors seems to keep it a little organized. That’s my opinion anyway.

Plain backing on his

I quilted his with the floral meander because those were perfect for this line of fabrics. I used a soft, plain backing for his…trying to use what I’ve got these days.

So we both have a Ribbons quilt. Only his has a label, I’ll get one on mine soon.

I like mine more.

Have a great day, friends!

LL

“The Same Only Different”

The Stay Home free pattern offered by Cluck Cluck Sew early on in our quarantine was one I definitely wanted to try. I had a 20 pack of fat quarters, so finding a few more was pretty easy.

The first one I made used some pretty Japanese fabrics I’ve had for a while. Favorites include little pandas and some pink buildings.

Cute little panda!

The fabrics in this group are really vibrant and fun. I especially liked the turquoise, this bright purply color and the black prints.

Home Sweet Home

The peach color along with the whites really lighten things up on this quilt. I used a burgundy thread to quilt this with arc or C shapes. At the time it seemed like a good idea. By the time I finished, I was not happy with it at all.

I put the binding on and put it to the side. It’s still there.

Very densely quilted

It’s grown on me a little, but for now, it’ll sit until I decide what to do with it.

Which brings us to the second Stay Home quilt. I cut my own fat quarters this time, from my stash. It took so much longer but I had a plan. Some of the fabrics are favorites I’ve had for a while, others pretty much matched the faves.

How about that green!

It went together really well, as did the first one. The pattern is so simple and really fun to do. It’s easy to get all matchy matchy, so I developed a system to avoid that. There are three groups of each fabric set (background and house) so a little bit of matching is ok. It’s just very tempting to put a light with a dark, and a print with a solid…..so I took one of the piles and did the picky matching thing.

With the other two I flipped one set upside down and one right side up, then took whatever was on top as a house set. (Background and house.)

I quilted this with a large meander using cream colored thread. I forget how relaxing it is to quilt this design, it’s never my first choice. But this quilt needed to be finished today.

“The House of God”

The backing is a cream Henry Glass fabric with little circle stars. I’ve had it for years and it was perfect. I had enough for binding too, so it’s obvious this was the quilt it was meant for.

This quilt is not quilted as densely as the first one. It drapes beautifully and is already comfy and soft. I’m guessing the less dense quilting makes this so.

So different.

I’m planning to give this quilt to a dear gentleman at our church. He is having cancer treatments now and we are all praying for healing for him.

If you’re the praying type, his name is Don.

Have a great weekend, friends. It ain’t over til Monday this time!

LL

“I Spy…”

I Spy quilts seem to be pretty dated. I made one years ago for my daughter, using the hexie and triangle method. It wasn’t perfect but she didn’t even care. It was fun.

During a sew along this spring, I decided to make one for my niece. Using the snowball block, sashing and simple borders, it turned out very cute and fun.

I Spy…

It’s so fun to choose the fabrics for this type of quilt, but making them all work together can be a trip. The day I asked, her favorite colors were “pink, purple and red.” She is three now, by the way.

I definitely wanted to include some of my favorite things…

Piggies
Puppies
Toast?

Toast? This fabric cracks me up, and I know it’ll be fun for her too.

And to honor her daddy and his favorite Dr Seuss character….

The Lorax

My husband chose the red sashing horseshoe fabric. I wasn’t 100% for it until I put the cookie cornerstones in. Finding a border to work with it was challenging. I never thought the quilt would “read” red.

I used a red/white check that worked out just fine. The back is pink, as it’s a favorite color of mine and it made the niece’s list.

Unoriginal quilt name….

I didn’t have enough of the red/white check to make a binding so I decided to try the scrap binding on this one. There are a few things to “spy” so it should be fun.

I quilted this with cursive capital L’s, or loops if you want to be particular. I want it to be floppy when it’s washed, not all stiff.

Scrappy binding

This might be the third or fourth quilt I’ve given this niece. Her brother has a few too.

If nothing else, they’ll be warm!

Have a great day friends!

Don’t be crabby.

LL

“BIG Thimbles”

Some days I want to sew fabric pieces together but I don’t want to have to think. I don’t want to measure, trim or press seams open.

I just want to put fabric together.

If you’re a quilter, I know you get it.

Something that makes me annoyed is the fabric waste. We buy the precuts, right. We cut them up to sew them together. With certain patterns, we have to cut away half an inch at the start! Of course I understand it’s to accommodate the seam allowance issue, but man, cutting that half inch away bugs me!

Today I wanted to try something to see how it’d work. And here is my pile of “cut offs.”

A little bit of cut offs

I had a Paris themed layer cake which has been sitting around for years. I figured it would be a good one to use just in case this experiment didn’t work out.

So I started with ten inch square pieces. I measured 1.5” from each top corner towards the corners at the bottom. This gave me the big thimble shape. Many people call it a tumbler too. (Even though I cut off a fair amount, I think I can use some of the pieces for another quilt that needs 1” x 5” pieces. SCORE!)

This isn’t really anything new or amazing, but being kind of willy nilly with my fabric was freeing.

I tried several layouts for the pieces. Sometimes one can try layouts all day long. I wanted to get to sewing! The first one was just random. I didn’t even take a picture. The second one was planned, and I hated it.

Matchy matchy

I thought I’d like this more, but it was just too much of the same fabric in one spot. I decided to leave the dark fabrics together and move the others all around, “randomly.”

It can take a long time to be random!

Random-ish

No, it didn’t take long. Not really. I think I spent two+ hours on this today. It measures around 54” square. Since the fabric is old, I doubt I’ll find matching border fabric. That’s ok, I’ll figure something out.

I used every bit of this layer cake (ten inch square set). (I plan to trim the scraps, so they’ll be used too.) Since the layout is six by six, I only used part of the set for the thimbles. The last few I cut in half so I wouldn’t have to cut off part of my thimble!

Doing that made me feel very clever.

Until I realized the directionality of the pieces.

I mixed them up the best I could, and I’m happy enough with it. It will join the pile of 14 tops I’ve made since March.

So I had to measure, I had to trim, but I didn’t have to press seams open. Two out of three isn’t bad.

I hope you have a great day, friend.

LL

“As You Wish”

One of our favorite movies is The Princess Bride. It just has everything! There is adventure, swordplay, humor and of course, true love! This quilt was made for a dear-to-me young lady and her “true love.”

I watched this young woman grow up. She colored on my wall with crayons. She is always kind to everyone. She is a natural teacher, with some serious skills. I love her and think of her as one of my favorite girls.

I asked her sister about colors for a quilt, and about style. Modern was the choice there so that’s easy enough. But colors…..black and purple are their fave colors. But red and yellow are special to them. These colors are not my usual, at all.

Especially purple. And yellow. Together?

The only way to make this work, IMO, was to use batiks. Luckily I happened to have two rolls of batiks laying around. This was good because I had about two weeks to get this done. (You know how long delivery is right now for fabric orders!) So I picked out the proper colors from the 80 strips and chose the pattern I used for my recent Grunge Quarantine quilt.

Blocks to be.

I could tell right away that these colors were really going to work well together. I was thrilled to see this and got most of the piecing done in two days.

Wavy line quilting

I quilted wavy organic lines across the quilt. I would have rather specialty quilted it, but my machine was acting up and wouldn’t cooperate. It ended up looking pretty nice regardless.

Backing fabric

I found the perfect black and purple batik for the backing and binding. I mean PERFECT! I was thrilled to find one with their combined fave colors. Score!

Labels ‘r us

As I’ve said before, my husband is a rock star at naming the quilts. He is way more talented than you’d think. I told him I was thinking something to do with The Princess Bride, like “Love, true love” but then he said “As You Wish.” It’s perfect, just perfect.

The last two quilts I’ve labeled, I’ve sewn the label into the binding so I only have to hand sew two edges. Some might say it’s cheating, I say it makes my life easier on my hands. I’m all about what’s easier these days.

I’ve already heard from our bride-to-be that the fiancé loves the quilt too. You quilters know how this makes the time and effort worth it. She said he wrapped up in it and loves it.

And that is why we quilt. The receivers of quilted gifts are usually special people. They know we sew and create something FOR THEM. They have a long lasting gift. But as the maker and giver, it warms my heart that this couple “loves” their quilt.

Have a great week, friends.

LL