Saturday, February 25, 2012

It's finished!!!

Finished  -- Confetti quilt made from solid scraps into a queen size quilt
It's funny, when you spend nearly 6 months working on something, you get pretty excited about the final post!

The Confetti quilt was made to go on the murphy bed in the den at the cabin.  When we were initially designing the cabin, we faced a balancing act of keeping as much public area for us as we could, while still creating private space for guests when they were here.  In the end, we created both a guest room and a den in the plans.

Then the challenge was to come up with sleeping options for the den where the person/couple who ended up in the den didn't feel like they had drawn the short straw for the weekend.  After thinking through a variety of options, I came up with a murphy bed that goes into the wall like a closet.  This is much easier to pull off when you are designing a house, then to try to modify once you have a finished house.

View of murphy bed in den from main room
Our den is just off the great room.  We had found some fabulous old carriage doors at a 2nd hand store which we painted and then had the door frame built to handle them as a bi-fold (a second set was put side by side and hung like a barn door to close off the utility room).
The windows and built in desk in the den
 The den faces the mountains and the canal ... 
The 'view'
And of course ... now whoever gets this room gets to sleep under this sweet quilt!

Back of the Confetti quilt
Scraps of colors

Binding and meandering quilting
The quilt by the numbers:

  • 440 blocks on the front, 132 blocks on the back -- 20 x 22 blocks
  • Each block is comprised of 3 pieces -- 3.5" x 3.5" square accompanied by a 3.5" x 1.75" strip and a 4.75 x 1.75" strip.
  • 75% of the pieces came from  my scrap bin.
  • It is quilted with a light gray thread in a relatively light tight meandering pattern (which I accomplished on  my Pfaff portable home sewing machine).
The biggest surprise for me on this quilt was how much it shrank.  I expected 7%, it was over 10%.  It works fine on the murphy bed, but would not want to use it on a regular bed where's its set up all the time as it wouldn't have enough drop one either side ... it really should have been 22 x 23 blocks -- which would have required an additional 66 blocks.  I am not sure if it was the tight quilting that caused the additional shrinkage.  The only other queen size quilt I have made shrank by 7%, so that's where I got my thinking from, but it was quilted in a straight line with far less quilting.  

For anyone who's interested, here are the other posts created in the making of this quilt.
Other than the slight challenge with the shrinkage ... I am THRILLED with how it came out.  I've pulled the murphy bed down today for the photo shoot ... and now I don't want to put it away ... I like looking at this quilt, it's bright and it makes me smile ... just like a quilt should!

All the best
Lisa

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Quilt Art

Week two of Rachel's Curves class is now behind me ... giving us some much needed artwork for the guest room.
Rachel designed this to be a 33" table runner.  I modified it to create a 48" wall art piece.
Living in earth-quake country, I am always careful what we hang over a bed, particularly a guest bed.  I love the thought of a quilt over head ... it just seems to fit with the need.
The linens in this room are about 15 years old and used to be in the master bedroom.  I think the quilt on the wall freshens it up quite a bit and lessens the need to update linens that only get used a couple of times a year.
The wall art was created entirely from my scrap bin.  Which I like even more!  I stuck with Rachel's plan for the most part, but made the rows an inch taller and the strips a little narrower.

I used the two posts on Tallgrass Prairie Studio here and here to figure out how to hang it (I used her push pin method).

It was a Saturday afternoon project and I'm quite pleased with how it came out.

Looking forward to week 3 of Rachel's class!

And I got a 4 mile run in this morning ... starting to get my mojo back!

Hope you had a great weekend!

All the best
Lisa

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Pot holders

We're heading back to England in a couple of week to visit with some of John's family and friends.

John asked if I could make something small for hostess gifts for some of our hosts while were there.  I got a few made this week.

Front of Red & Gray Potholders
Back of Red & Gray Potholders
Front of Green Potholders
Back of Green Potholders
Only two more sets to go!

And a little color inspiration from the market this weekend ...

Ballard Farmers Market
Hope you're having a good week.

All the best
Lisa

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Curves ... week 1


I have finished week 1 of Rachel's curves class over at Stitched in Color.  It is a 4 week class and she's offering 3 different levels.  I took the class with the lowest level of engagement ... and it's working out great.

Each Friday, Rachel lays out 3 projects that are available to us for the following week -- we get to choose how many we choose to take on.  She then provides three tutorials during the week on each of the projects and is available to answer any questions that we have.

In week one, Rachel's proposed projects for the first week included bunting, baby bibs and a scalloped pillow.  As I had already pulled together a birthday bunting project before, last week I chose to pull together the baby bibs and the scalloped pillow.

The bibs are made from flannel and gave me practice with some simple curves, stop stitching and installing snaps.

Flannel baby bibs
The instructions were to use solids on the back ... but I didn't see any reason not to make them reversible.
Bib on right is the coordinating reversible fabric
Backs of both bibs
They were a snap to pull together and I can't wait to see them in use by two of my friends who are having babies this spring.

The second project was a bit more complex, raw edge scallops appliquéd to a pillow top.

Scalloped Applique Pillow
Back of Scalloped pillow
This was a good learning project.  In addition to the curved appliqués, I also put in my very first invisible zipper with out a single stressful moment!  There was a small spot where I didn't get the appliqué coverage done properly ... as I intend to make a quilt from a similar pattern, this was a great learning exercise.

Oops
Rachel has posted 3 new projects for this week ... I'm pretty keen on two of them ... now I must just make some time to actually work on them.

The Valentines Day Runners
John and I also ran a "Love 'em or Leave 'em" 5K on Saturday.  This was my first run having come back from a tibial stress fracture last fall.  While I didn't break any records, I was thrilled to get back out there again and the training is now on for a 1/2 marathon in May.  

Hope you had a great weekend.

All the best
Lisa

Sunday, February 5, 2012

As a quilt top evolves ...

... it can have many homes ...

I started this top for my brother ... he's going through a bit of a rough patch right now and is living on his own for the first time in a while.  He's got decent furniture, but none of the decorative things that make a house a home.  

My inspiration was the Richard Nixon Throw from Jonathan Adler.

However, as it has evolved, it became pretty clear to me that adding the patchwork portion to it made an interesting quilt, but not necessarily something that a 34-year-old bachelor would want to throw on their sofa.  
I've been wanting to pull something together for Victoria's Bumble Bean Basic's Quilt Drive to support helping homeless families get into housing in NYC.  While it's not something for a 34 year old bachelor ...  it is something that a family might enjoy ...

So that was my new plan ... this was going to be my charity quilt.  Until I brought it upstairs for a photo op and my husband saw it ... to say this is his favorite of the ones I have done so far would likely be a bit of an understatement!

So this one is now earmarked for John and I've got some new thinking to do on a great quilt for a needy family in NYC.

Hope you had a great weekend!

All the best
Lisa

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Curves Introduction

Well ... I am very excited about my first ever quilting class!

Rachel @ Stitched in Color is offering a class on Curves ... she asked us to do a brief intro of ourselves for the rest of the team ... so my apologies to the rest of you!

I have been quilting for 2 1/2 years, I've learned a lot, but it's all be self-taught, so this will be a welcome change ... someone telling me how to do it the first time instead of me having to do it 3 times before I figure it out!

My goal with this class is to make a built for a little girl who will be joining the world in May.  While not afraid of curves ... not willing to take them on without some instructions.

My Flickr ID is also Shiners View.

I will leave you with two images ...

The 1st quilt I made

My most recent quilt (tutorial)
Looking forward to the class ...

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Pillow from home ...

Seattle Pillow
Soon, this will be the front of a 12x16" pillow ... once you give me a little advice!

First, the background.  It's a small gift for my lovely cousin who recently left Seattle on an adventure to see the U.S. as a traveling nurse.  Having sold most of her belongings, she packed the remainder into her car and she's just arrived at her first assignment in Atlanta.

She was the recipient of one of my first quilts when she graduated from nursing school 2 years ago.  I am flattered that quilt is with her on this journey.  The goal this time was to make her something small to remind her of her roots and those who love her back home.

My initial plan was to include some of Seattle's iconic features, Mt. Rainier, the Space Needle, perhaps an evergreen or two and then the word HOME appliquéd.

It's gotten a little more grandiose than I had planned ;-).  A little Googling of iconic Seattle features, coupled with the word silhouette, produced some pretty cool images that I was able to trace and apply to the pillow cover.

For those of you unfamiliar with Seattle's skyline ... we really do have a 14,000' mountain that feels like she hovers over us on clear days!

I'm actually quite pleased with what I have so far.  But I am now at that point we sometimes get to ... where I like what I have, but am afraid to take the next step ... because then I might not like it ...

Here's what it looks like laid on a pillow:
While I like it ... it's not complete and it's a little to monotone -- Black, white and several shades of gray.  I only want to add it if will enhance ... the original intent had been the HOME appliqué in the bottom right corner.  I could have an Evergreen or two on the right to bring in new color.

But none of them really thrill me.

Does anyone have any thoughts on what this might need or what might help complete it?  I am going to use some color on the back ... but do I need any on the front?

Would welcome any thoughts anyone has!

Thanks in advance,

All the best
Lisa



Time to introduce a new quilter!

So I found a brand new quilter this week (or rather she found me and left a comment on my blog).
Learning to quilt with a chick on my knee

Kim is a brand new quilter who's got some great starter quilts already on her blog ... and a fabulously named blog, "Learning to quilt with a chicken on my knee" -- how fun is that?!?


Kim's 1st free-motion quilting project
Based on Kim's first two quilts ... I know we're going to see some pretty cool stuff from her and I also know what a great, welcoming community we have here ... so I thought I would give you a chance to stop by, say hello and give her a little encouragement as she starts on this fun (slightly addictive) journey!

Welcome Kim ... and I hope the rest of you are having a great week!

All the best
Lisa


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