Friday, December 31, 2010

Pick-Up Sticks Quilt

Here is another one of the quilts I made for Christmas this year. This one was for my husband and me (finally a quilt I get to keep!).

The inspiration for this quilt was an art print I saw online. My husband and I both really like abstract art, so I looked at a bunch of art for inspiration. I thought this particular print was so cool, I decided to just make it into a quilt!

Pick-up Sticks by Isabel Lawrence

By far the hardest part of this quilt was finding all the fabric! I decided to redo our bedroom in light blue, various shades of gray, and black. I found the blue pretty easily, and I dug through my stash for gray, but the only gray fabric I had was a fat quarter. Luckily it was perfect. So then I had to buy tons of gray fabrics, mostly online, and could only use about half of them because the rest were the wrong shade -- I didn't realize how many different grays there are! And how many of them are really PURPLE. Anyway, once I had all the fabrics, I printed out a black and white copy of the art print, enlarged it a little bit on the copy machine, figured out the scale (i.e. 1/4 inch on the picture equaled 1.25 inches on the quilt) and then had to figure out all the measurements for each little section, cut and sew it all together. Easy. Except for when it was done, the center measured 4 inches smaller than the top and bottom. So there was a bit of fudging at the end, but who can tell?

I put gray minkee on the back and quilted it with straight lines 1/4 to 3/4 inches wide.

Here it is on the turned out even better than I had hoped!

I made these little matching quilted pillows with the leftover scraps.

I had too much fun quilting dandelions onto this one...


Monday, December 27, 2010

Lakeside Resort Charm Quilt

Here is one of my latest quilts. I made it for my little brother and his wife for Christmas. This is the first year that we have done a gift exchange among my siblings, and the limit was set at $25. I wanted to make a quilt for their gift, but with such a small amount to work with, I didn't think I'd be able to do it. So I was all ready to get them a camera bag for their new camera. Well I was browsing in a local quilt shop the day after Thanksgiving and happened to see two Lakeside Resort charm packs on clearance. I had seen the line before and just loved the blues and greens, so I picked them up, thinking I'd make myself a lap quilt to take in the car or something. There was also a cute stripe print that was not part of the line, but matched really closely, so I got a little of that too. Once I got the stuff home, I started looking for a cute pattern to make, and ended up throwing one together in EQ6. By this point, I had done the math in my head and discovered that if I used fabric I already had for the sashing, borders and backing, I could easily make this quilt for my brother while spending less than $25 in new materials. So that's what I did.

I must admit that this is the first quilt I have ever made using charm packs. In fact, these are the first charm packs I have ever bought. Call me crazy, I like to have yardage! Anyway, it was pretty easy and fast with all the squares already cut, so I think I'm a fan. The only frustrating thing was trying to lay it all out and wishing I had more of one color or print and not having it. Anyway, I got it all put together and quilted it quickly (all hail the pantograph!), then I just went ahead and bound it with the matching stripe. Once I had the binding on, I totally hated it. I threw it on the couch where it sat for three or four days and every time I looked at it, I thought, there is no way I can give this away as a gift! I hate it! I told my husband how much I didn't like it now that I had ruined it with the now glaringly NON-matching striped binding and he said, "It's because it has too much brown in it!" (He hates brown).

In the end, I decided it was too late to find another gift, so I would just have to give it to them and hope they didn't hate it too! And then I took pictures of it. And I thought the pictures made it look so pretty. So I changed my mind...I do like it after all. And more importantly, little brother and his wife like it too! :)

Monday, December 20, 2010

Merry me!

This year I definitely made a couple quilts as Christmas I can't post on them quite yet. In the meantime, here is the present I made for myself. I also made copies for my parents...grandma...and a couple other people. (Act surprised if you happen to get one!)

Yes --a calendar of all the quilts I finished this year!

And here's the back cover...with thumbnails of all the pictures that are inside.

I am getting the calendar printed on This is the first time I've ever made anything on their site and I haven't received the actual printed calendars yet, so I don't know how the quality is...but they had the best deal for the size - 14x22" (open) on sale for $15 plus shipping. I'm excited to get them and see how they turn out. I did all the words, cropping and back cover in Photoshop - I am definitely not a Photoshop expert, so it took me a little while to figure out how to do what I wanted. And in my classic style, I was frantically binding quilts, taking pictures (in the snow and freezing cold) and messing around with the editing on the last day of the calendar sale. But it wouldn't be Christmas for me without a crazy stressful finish, would it?!

(edited 12/28/10 to add: I got these tonight! Yay! They turned out great! The quality of these is excellent! I love the huge size--it looks so professional! Next time I will change the resolution on the page I made in photo shop-- it was a little fuzzy--my mistake! Oh well, all the pictures look great! I'm going right downstairs to hang it in my studio!!)