Sunday, July 26, 2015

Fractal Blog Hop: An AGF Stitched with Kimberly Event

Welcome to the Fractal Blog Hop hosted by the Fat Quarter Shop and sponsored by Art Gallery Fabrics. As usual, the Fat Quarter Shop has you covered with a video tutorial and free pattern download. To make the process even more convenient, the Fat Quarter Shop offers a quilt kit featuring the Imprint collection by Katarina Rochelle for Art Gallery Fabrics.
I must fess up. When I read through the pattern and came to the realization that it contained a heap load of y-seams, I panicked a bit. Historically, I have avoided y-seams, partial seams, and other such foul-seeming atrocities. However, with beautiful Art Gallery Fabrics and a brand-spankin' new Creative Grids ruler in hand, I was in too deep to turn back. I did what any self-respecting woman ought to do and told myself, "Self, suck it up!"
While I love acrylic rulers, I'm a bit skeptical about ones that seem catered toward one specific quilt. I was pleased to see all the possibilities the versatile Creative Grids Kite Ruler had to offer. I quickly came to embrace the Kite Ruler, with it's anti-slip texture on the back and holes for marking where to begin or end your line of stitching. I found the Clover Air Erasable Pen to be an excellent choice for marking, except if you leave your blocks unsewn for more than a day. (Because you have yet to put on your big girl pants and get over your unmerited trepidation about y-seams, or maybe that's just me.) Then, the marker is true to its word, and vanishes. This is a blessing if your blocks are sewn, and a curse if you haven't gotten down to business yet.
I'm sure you are astute, and it hasn't escaped your attention that the photos feature a bag, and not a quilt. I did make my quilt blocks, and I assure you they will become a quilt. I'm ashamed to admit how quickly and nicely they came together, given that I dedicated myself so fully to wallowing in self-pity over the dreaded y-seams.
Making these blocks with 8 1/2" kites was so pain-free, that I decided to make blocks using 2 1/2" kites from my luxurious leftovers. After all, I firmly believe that, as a general rule, smaller is cuter. I combined these adorable blocks with other Art Gallery fabrics from my stash, to make the Pepper Tote by Clover & Violet. It's a free, and user-friendly pattern. Besides, it has pockets on the inside.
 And, it has a fancy-looking inset pocket on the outside.
The Art Gallery fabrics I used include Commute by Taxi from Leah Duncan's Gramercy (lining), Garden Gate Berry (outside pocket) and Bed of Daisies Golden (inner pocket) from Bonnie Christine's Sweet as Honey and Wildwood Nectar (in block) from her Hello, Bear collection, Aves Chatter Shine (in block) from her Winged collection, Pointelle Celeste (in block) and Triangularity Topaz (in block) from Urban Mod, Pearl and Gold Metallic from Etno by Pat Bravo, and Cuneiform Script (straps) from Recollection by Katarina Roccella.

Art Gallery fabrics have a much softer hand than other quilt shop quality lines, almost like a voile. Don't be fooled by their incredibly drapey hand, they are also durable. At some point during my bag's photo shoot, an entire bottom corner was dredged through some horrible black soot. I had to rectify this atrocity immediately, so I did some rigorous scrubbing with stain remover, and threw it into my washing machine. The stain came out, and the fabrics were unscathed. There's wasn't any snagging, piling--nothing. Phew!
Thanks Art Gallery Fabrics and Fat Quarter Shop for letting me join in on the fun!

Don't forget to check out the other stops on the hop:
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Saturday, July 25, 2015

Open Wide Zippered Pouch and The Pepper Tote

In a rash of uncharacteristic behavior, I decided to create a zipper pouch and coordinating tote. I'm a wimp, and quilts are my comfort zone. It would be a wrongful assumption to think that, because I can quilt, I know something about bags or zippers. Things that aren't flat are scary in my book. That being said, all my whimpering and sniveling went to waste after all, because it turned out to be a quick and painless process. 
I used Noodlehead's Open Wide Zippered Pouch, because it seems everyone is making one. That many folks can't be wrong. Right? Do you want to see how it opens? Perhaps if you scroll down through the next three photos really fast, it'll seem like action footage.
Okay, I'm pretty sure that didn't work, but appreciate you humoring me, all the same.
For the tote, I employed the free Pepper Tote pattern by Clover and Violet. And, what do you know, it actually worked! I also love the plentiful pockets.
I highly recommend these patterns because, if I can do it, you can do it. This time, I'm not bluffing (like when I told you that nonsense about action footage). Promise!
I used Cotton + Steel fabrics including Metallic Arrows in Navy (zippy pouch in first picture), Home Decor Canvas in Mustang Gold (tote exterior), Moonlit Tangrams in Navy (tote pocket), and Daisies in Teal (tote interior).
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Friday, July 24, 2015

Holiday Plus Quilt

Merry Christmas in July everyone! The local quilt shop where I work, Quilts Ole, has an annual tradition consisting of a sale and unveiling of quilt kits made by the staff.
I chose to work with the Wonderland collection by Makower UK. I love its retro vibe. The background is Kona Royal. I chose Cars for the backing, and a red solid for the binding.
Linda Noordt did the long-arm quilting.
Kits are available from Quilts Ole. If you aren't local, fabric from the Wonderland line is available from Fabricworm and The Intrepid Thread
I wanted to highlight the fabrics, while creating a pattern that would be quick and beginner-friendly. Stitch and Flip Triangles made this aim possible. 
The pattern is available as a free pdf download on Craftsy. While you're there, you may want to check out the Summer Closeout sale going on until Monday, July 27.
The Cotton + Steel Mystery Boxes are a great deal. For $49.57, you get an assortment of forty fat quarters in one of four color ways (yellow, pink, aqua, or navy). That's $4.96 per yard!

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Cath's Rainbow Mini

I'd like to introduce you to Cath Hall of Wombat Quilts, a delightful human representation of the generosity and friendliness of quilters. She was one of my bee mates in the Hope Circle of do. Good Stitches last year. I had the honor of meeting her briefly during a family vacation to Portland where she currently resides. I can attest, she's as lovely in person as she is online.
I was cruising through my Instagram feed when Cath's beautiful Flying Geese mini caught my attention. Her status read, "So this is my rainbow mini quilt. I volunteered to be an Angel for the #rainbowminiswap but found out this morning my quilt was not needed. So I am finishing it up..." I audaciously commented, "I need it!" to which I fully expected an appropriately fitting response such as, "Nice try, Afton!" Instead, Cath blew me away by replying, "Afton it is yours if you want it. I will finish it up in the next week and send it to you." It's as awesome in person as it was online. It finishes at 18" square, so many of those triangles are really tiny, and yet impeccably pieced.
Cath's packaging was adorable too!

Here's a peek of the back. It's a bright, collage-style print that coordinates well with the front.
Thank you so much Cath!
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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Moccasin BOM

Hip, hip, hooray! I have a finish today.
The pattern I used is Anne Marie Chany's Moccasin. It consists of twenty-three 9" blocks divided into eleven monthly patterns, as well as a twelfth pattern for finishing.
My version will serve as a shop sample for Quilts Ole. You can call the shop at 505-890-9416 if you are interested in purchasing a kit. If you live outside the US, prefer the original color scheme, or Quilts Ole sells out, Missouri Star Quilt Co. is an alternative source.

Instead of using the colors specified in the pattern, this version has more of a southwestern flavor. Below is a chart of my color modifications. I used Kona solids. Additionally, I used coffee instead of purple for the background on Month 6, and burgundy instead of indigo on Month 11. 
Original Color
Quilts Ole Kit Color
Terra Cotta
School Bus
Light Pink
If you are going to use an alternate color scheme, I highly recommend you print a coloring book outline.
Patti Lueker (505-699-3748 or did the fine custom quilting. I love how she incorporated southwestern motifs and a modern aesthetic.
I do have a few suggestions for the piecing. For one, I learned the hard way that using a acrylic ruler and matching the wedge length to the pattern will not suffice. If the wedge on the ruler is a wider angle, your Dresden Plate will not fit on the block.
Secondly, I made some modifications to the patterns to employ strip piecing, particularly with the four identical blocks that surround the Dresden Plate. The provided instructions tend to involve cutting each piece individually which is a bit tedious for my taste.
For the backing I used a Michael Miller Fairy Frost from my stash since it was similar in color, just the right amount, and would hide quilting starts and stops. While I didn't quilt this piece, I have learned from personal experience that using a solid colored backing is very unforgiving, and provides good reason to either tie off and bury all starts and stops, or consider a different backing selection.
Thanks for joining me!
I'm linking up with:
WIPs on WednesdaysFluster BusterThe DIY Dreamerkatherines cornersaving4sixFree Motion MavericksCreations by Nina-MarieCreativity Unleashed link party!The 36th AvenueKitchenFunThe Shabby Nest
Fort Worth Fabric Studio
Rooted In Thyme


Keeping It SimpleSkip To My Lou
mop it up mondays

Making the World Cuter
Cooking Up Quilts
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