Friday, May 9, 2014

A Quilt for a Teacher

My daughter is just finishing her first year of teaching. She has had a year full of stories and experiences and there were a few people she wanted to say a special thank you to for helping her make it through. Her list started quite long but with the realization that time was catching up to her, she whittled the list down to three. Three quilts for three special people.

She came home for her spring break back in March thinking we would make three quilts together. And we tried...and managed to get two quilt tops completed.

Here is one of them. I didn't get a picture of the second one, and I don't even remember what it looks like now. She has already shared the tops and will be bringing them back home this summer to be quilted and finished. I'll get better pictures then.

With spring break at an end, there either wasn't going to be a third quilt or I was going to have to make it without her. We had already settled on a design so I started plugging away at it. The design comes from a Moda Bakeshop Pattern Mixed Bag by Studio m. I'm trying to use up my batik stash since I haven't been using those very much lately. This was the perfect quilt to help with that.

The pattern is meant for a jelly roll, which would have made it go together quickly. Instead, I spent a good deal of time sorting through and cutting scraps. It was well worth it though. I was a little nervous about matching all those seams when the vertical strips went together, but it was easy peasy since the seams were pressed in opposite directions.

To quilt it, vertical lines were quilted a quarter inch away from either side of each vertical seam. Then free motion sewing commenced with simple meandering on each vertical panel. I'll be shipping this quilt off later this week. It's always nice to say thank you with a quilt.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Just Sewing - Potholders

Sometimes, a girl just wants to sew. She doesn't want to measure. She doesn't want to cut. She doesn't want to match. It is times like these where this sewing girl turns to her scraps. I save scraps like a crazy there will never be another new piece of fabric to enter my home. Like I'm really ever going to use up everything that is already here. Ha!

Some of my smallest scraps are sorted into jars. This is the triangle jar. This is where my "just sewing" day began.

I expected the result to be a bunch of gnarly, wonky half square triangles, and there isn't a lot of fantastic matching going on, but the triangles were all similar in size which kept things fairly consistent. At the end of a sewing afternoon, I found myself with three almost finished potholders.

The borders are off set for just a little more "I told you I am not measuring anything today" statement. The quilting was done from the back since this large flower was perfect to outline.

So I did break down and square these up. That is the only measuring and cutting done for the day. All this one needs is some binding.

Here's the second one. Dipped into my jar with strings for the orange trim. A little free motion quilting and a pretty orange print for the back. This one also lacks binding to be complete.

And for the third one, my basket of selvedges called to me from across the room.

That's as far as this one got. It needs backing, quilting, and binding. But it's darn cute.

Here they are all together. They will likely get finished up next weekend. Three pot holders made from the scrappiest of scraps. That should satisfy my "just sewing" need for now.
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