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.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Day of the Dead Snowball Quilt (#64)

Textile house Alexander Henry never disappoints Day of the Dead fans with their colorful & glorious designs. The main problem I find with these large repeat novelty fabrics is that they don't do well cut up into tiny quilt pieces. Fussy cutting can ruin the motif as well as waste fabric.
I made grocery bags out of Cartas Marcadas Stamps by cutting a horizontal chunk. This was originally my cheater quilt idea - just leave the fabric as is. Unfortunately the non-black version of this pattern looked really weak & needed some color.
Enter the snowball block with my Accuquilt die - a large shape that didn't conflict with the rectangles and showed the details of the design - perfect.
The end result is a really nice jumble of color and images - every snowball holds some interest with a different skeleton.  Quilted with Aurifil 50wt. #2360 in a wavy stitch following the seams and through the middle of the blocks - this thread complements the brown accent corners.
A deep brown minky on the back harmonizes with one of my favorite blender fabrics: Mix Master Dot to Dot by Robert Kaufman (which is sadly not available much anymore).

Folklorico/Cartas Marcadas Bright by Alexander Henry
Mix Master Dot to Dot / ccoca / Robert Kaufman
Skinny Strips in Spice / Laura Gunn (binding)
Dimple Dot minky brown
Warm and White batting
Aurifil 50wt. #2360
Size: 58" x 74"
December 2016

Monday, December 12, 2016

Bee Creative Lap Quilts (#62 & 63)

What better way to show off Deb Strain's lovely Bee Creative line than with snowball blocks that look all hexagon & bee like.
Both these little lap quilts are on their way from sunny California to jolly olde England to keep my cousins warm in the cutest outside hut ever.  The whole vibe just screamed BEEES to me and the fabric choice & shape were ... meant to be!
All fabric was starched, ironed and then cut with the Accuquilt snowball die.  Yarn dyed Essex linen in black is the accent fabric with minky scraps on the back. 
Using a 1/2" seam to join the minky and then sewing over them again from the front to re-enforce the join - you can hardly see the stitching because the Aurifil 50wt. thread just sinks into the fibers ... love that. These seams won't unravel even after lots of washing.
Large patterns and novelty fabrics do great in snowball quilt blocks because all the wonderful designs & details show to advantage.
The generous amount of 28 fat quarters in this bundle means there are more small lap quilts to be made. 7 rows across by 7 rows down makes a blanket 41"x 41". 
Bee Creative by Deb Strain for Moda
Essex linen yarn dyed Black
Dimple Dot minky
Warm & White batting
Aurifil 50wt. Grey Smoke (#5004) Sand (#2000)
Accuquilt snowball die
Size: 41" x 41"
December 2016

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Cherie Half Square Triangle Quilt (#61)

I feel in love with Cherie when people posted pictures of Frances Newcombe's booth at Quilt Market 2014.  When it came out months later I bought fat quarters for me and a few friends.  Beautiful stuff.
Without having a clear idea of the finished quilt design - I paired up darks & lights, cut them with the Accuquilt 4.5" half square triangle die and sewed large blocks.  And there it all sat for months & months in a plastic box.
I couldn't get a handle on a layout and it became my most loathed project to work on.  Fast forward a year and a half - a little wiser, more articles read, more YouTubes watched and more quilts finished and voila - I came up with this and love it!
I unpicked a lot white Kona sashing, used black grunge fabric as the main accent and to frame the faces.  Black minky with that hot raspberry (Les Points in Rose) as a binding - and a mod Barbie quilt with a French twist was born.
This quilt has been a great lesson on the importance of background fabric- and maybe not always use Kona white or Essex linen. One thing that will never change is using a new #14 needle and Aurifil 50wt. for minky quilting - perfect every time.
The 6th & last teen quilt ready to be gifted before the school break. I couldn't have had more fun!
Cherie by Frances Newcombe for Art Gallery
Moda Wintergreen Ebony (black)
Dimple Dot minky black
Warm & White
Aurifil 50wt. Grey Smoke (#5004)
Size: 59" x 74
December 2016

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Nostalgia Star Quilt (#60)

Some of the prettiest fabric ever is Jennifer Paganelli's Nostalgia collection from Free Spirit. 
I adapted Carrie Nelson's pattern called "Place C" from her book Schnibbles Times Two: Quilts from 5" or 10" Squares.
Since I had various sizes of left over fabric from my first Nostalgia quilt (here), I made half square triangles instead of Carrie's suggested flying geese and trimmed everything to 4.5".  Aurifil 50wt. Muslin thread was the perfect choice for wavy line quilting following the seams.
A few star points were omitted to keep the quilt width to 60" wide so I could easily add minky backing - but the overall design looks great.
Since the pattern is simple but stunning - Nostalgia's large motifs and harmonizing colors shine. 
What's not to love about this 5th teen quilt for my daughter's friend.
Nostalgia by Jennifer Paganelli for Free Spirit
Kona white
Dimple Dot minky / vanilla
Warm & White
Aurifil 50wt. Muslin (#2311)
Size: 60" x 75.5"
December 2016

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Hourglass Quilt in Noteworthy (#59)

The thing about this Noteworthy quilt from Sweetwater is that the muted pallet looks fabulous in person - but rather washed out in photos.  This is my 4th quilt made with Noteworthy and it's soothing calm appeal is perfect for a variety of age groups and tastes - (the other quilts are linked here).
What I learned after making this 3rd hourglass quilt using the Accuquilt 6.5" HST die (how I did it here) is while my sewing skills are good - even with starch and careful sewing I ended up with ripples in the border from naturally bias stretchy edges. I thought I could overcome this rippled border by being more careful but sadly that's not the case. So, my simple hack, like the last time, was to fold the extra fabric into 3 little pleats each near a seam line - and stitch over them - not perfect but not that bad either.
Lovely white minky, a broken zig zag stitch over the seam lines using my new favorite Aurifil 50wt. thread of Muslin (#2311) and a #14 needle is a win/win.
Lastly, its always fun to use fabric that has such fun scribbles and text.  
This is "Teen Quilt No.4" ready for my dauther's friends.
Noteworthy by Sweetwater (from Moda)
Aurifil 50wt. Muslin (#2311)
Dimple dot Minky white
Warm & White batting
Size: 59" x 76"
December 2016