Monday, August 16, 2010

Animal Party Circle Quilt

Yay for baby quilts! Seriously everyone I know is either pregnant or just had a baby...which means...I'm going to be making lots of baby quilts! This one is for my future nephew Oliver, who is due in a couple weeks (he is actually due on my birthday). I designed this one myself...The fabric is mostly Animal Party by Amy Schimler for Robert Kaufman...I thought it was so cute, I just started grabbing all of it--without really having a plan for it--but then I saw the little animals on the panel and I knew it would be perfect for a circle quilt!

I have been wanting to make a circle quilt for a long time...I actually have had one planned...but I couldn't decide which method to use to make the circles--there are quite a few ways I have found to do it...fusible web...freezer paper...water soluble thread...something to do with foil I read about somewhere...but none of them seemed to be right for what I wanted to do (several circles that overlap each other) without a: taking forever and b: being really bulky and/or stiff. Well then I remembered an applique method I had used in my very first quilting class back in college --where we had sewn fusible interfacing to the shape, turned it inside out, pressed it to the fabric, stitched around it and then cut the back off to reduce the bulk (here is a random tutorial I found that illustrates pretty well how to to this). So I decided to test it out on this quilt. Well I'm here to tell works LIKE A CHARM for circles. They're fast, easy and you can do parts of it while waiting in the doctors office or watching Kipper with your 2 year old ;) Oh yeah, and the circles turn out beautifully!

I debated for a day or two about how to quilt this...and then finally decided to just echo the circles. I used a circle groovy board to make them look as round as possible :) And I used half circle rulers to go around the applique shapes-which worked quite well.

And then I found this fun park to take pictures in...

Stripey binding = my favorite part!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

English Garden

Here's my latest is FINALLY done! I say finally because I bought the fabric about 3 years ago--and now it is finally a quilt! I had been wanting to make a quilt for my grandma and this fabric was practically shouting "Grandma will love this!" at me --and BONUS-- I got a screamin' deal on it! It was a kit that came with a pattern, but I didn't love the pattern, so I kept looking for another one--meanwhile the fabric collected dust in my stash. Well last summer I finally found a pattern that I liked and started working on it. In my typical fashion, I worked on it like crazy for a few days, and got quite a bit of it done, but eventually I got bored with it and started working on other projects. Then I cleaned my quilting room and it went in the closet where it sat until about a month ago when my mom came out to visit me and help with my new baby. Since the quilt is for my mom's mom, I decided to work on the quilt while she was here. So I dragged it all back out of the closet and had the blocks nearly done by the time she left...then I lollygagged around for another week or so getting the borders put on, and quilting it! I don't know why I feel the need to explain all that--I am just glad my grandma is still alive after the 3 years it took me to make her a quilt!

I found this pattern, titled "English Garden" in the April 2007 issue of McCall's Quilting. My grandma loves plants and flowers and had a really pretty, really BIG garden in her yard (think secret garden--it had high fences around it and everything!). It has since grown over as my grandparents have gotten too old to take care of it. I wish I had a picture of it because it was amazing! Anyways, I think my grandma will like the title of this quilt as much if not more than the quilt itself ;) And I thought it only fitting that I take some pictures of this quilt in my neighbors flower garden!

I had so much fun quilting this quilt! I used groovy boards, stencils and a little free hand - here are some close-ups --not perfect, but fun! I actually tried to copy some of the quilting on the one in the magazine because I thought it was so pretty...

I am not a pro at feathers--groovy boards and stencils are my best friends for anything feathered!

Here's a picture of the back...I think it looks pretty cool

Grandma is going to love it! (I hope).