Hi, my name is Ruth and this is my blog to show & share my quilts that I give to family & friends.
Simple designs that may inspire you to make one too.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Darth Vader Quilt (#44)

Making this pixel quilt of Darth Vader was great fun.  The pattern comes from WS Kane Patterns on Etsy where she provides clear instructions for fabric requirements and multiple grid templates for you to download (and mark up to your hearts content!)
I used small post it notes to isolate 5 rows up & 5 rows down - and then assembled these larger squares together, working from the top of the pattern to the bottom.  For me, it was easier than working left to right, row by row.  
There are multiple patterns from cross stitch, knitting, crochet and bead sites that you can use to make a pixel quilt (or search '8-bit pixel quilts' and of course, Pinterest for ideas) - although you have to be careful that the design is not too wide or long to accommodate a 2.5" square.  Too large and your quilt will be enormous.  This Darth Vader template was perfect in its dimensions.
Quilting was done using a 3.5 straight stitch length in a 3" diagonal grid. Using Aurifil 50wt. medium grey #1158 and light grey minky on the back - the darker image of Darth Vader stays the focal point.
What made this so enjoyable was letting go of perfection expectations ... I threw all the little black & pepper Kona squares into a big box and did the random pickup method with my eyes closed ...  I washed, starched, ironed and cut as carefully as possible these little squares - and still, I was a little off on a few!
Do these 'mistakes' mean the end of pixel quilting ... no way ... pixel quilts are on my bucket list!
 A very cool website that allows you to make a pixel pattern from your own image is: KnitPro

{ Update: finished another pixel quilt, the little blue Totoro - here.}

WS Kane Patterns / Darth Vader
Kona white, ash, black & pepper
Architextures Crosshatch in Shadow / Robert Kaufman
Mirror Ball Dot in onyx - Michael Miller
Mini Confetti / Dear Stella
Minky dimple dot / silver or light grey
Binding: Aged Solids in black/3 Sisters for Moda 
Aurifil 50wt. Dove & Medium Grey #1158
Size: 60"x 76"
October 2015

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Spa 9-patch Quilt (#43)

A 9-patch block made with Deb Strain's Spa line from Moda,  proves that the combination of blue and white can be both fresh & traditional at the same time.
Spa uses beautiful scroll designs and mosaic motifs in multiple shades of blue - from light to cobalt. This collection is like looking at Blue Willow china or Delft pottery.  Your eye can always find something to enjoy.
White Kona sashing & borders lighten up the front, and help separate the Midnight Blue minky on the back.  My initial choice for the back minky was a light grey because I was worried it would be 'too blue' - but the darker back worked nicely to give the quilt more visual weight.
Tension issues can arise when using  minky.  If you use a dark bottom thread and the tension is a little off, or you get stuck with the batting and minky making your walking foot work extra hard - the darker thread can show up on the lighter quilt top. 
 Here's my win/win solution - I use a light thread in the bobbin.  (in this case it was the middle spool of grey blue)
Aurifil 50wt. is perfect since it sinks and almost disappears into the 3mm pile of the minky.   This totally works for me; no stress about thread show on the front and the back looks great since you can still see the stitching lines ... I can't wait to use more dark minkys!

Spa by Deb Strain / Moda
Kona white
Aurifil 50wt. dove(#2600), white & grey blue (#5007)
Warm & White batting
Midnight blue dimple dot minky
Size: 57"x 72"
October 2015