Monday, June 30, 2014

My Favourite Quilt

I'm sneaking in just under the wire here. If you have not seen or read, Sew Mama Sew has had a great feature running every day in June. Jess, of Quilty Habit, posted a story each day about a different quilter and their favourite quilt. All of us get to play along a s well so here I am, literally at the last possible moment, getting my post in and linking it up - it took me until now to set aside the other priorities and actually think about what quilt I would want to call "my favourite". Jessica asked each quilter a series of questions about their quilts so now, without further ado, here is my (current) favourite quilt and the answers to all those burning questions.

Tells us about your favourite quilt. When did you make it? What pattern did you use? What fabrics?

My favourite quilt is my Malibu Barbie Swoon. I started making this quilt in January of 2012. I find every year, right after Christmas, I have the urge to start something new. I'd had the Swoon pattern for some time by that point and always wanted to make it but had never really made a plan for doing so. The fabric which inspired this quilt was one of the focus prints from Kate Spain's Central Park line - I had ordered a fat quarter bundle of it as soon as it came out and then it just languished in my stash - it was time to do something with it. I got the blocks made in a big hurry but never finished putting it together until about June or so. It is a big quilt, so I decided to have it machine quilted and dropped it off at the quilter the same time I dropped off one of my daughter's wedding quilts to be done. Of course when it came time to pick them up, the wedding quilt was my priority for finishing. Then there was a wedding. Then another daughter and another wedding and another quilt. It took me until about June of last year to actually get the binding attached and stitched down so the project likely spanned 18 months total.

Have you shown it at any quilt shows or entered it in any contests?


What memories or people does the quilt make you think of?

I'm not sure it evokes memories about people so much as about my childhood. I named it Malibu Barbie Swoon because the colours reminded me of my Barbie doll and of the beach. I think back to countless, carefree hours swimming at the lake under a glorious yellow sun - those were the days!

What do you like best about this quilt?

Everything. I love the saturated colours on the crisp white background. I love the symmetry of the stars. I love the aqua binding print. I love how vintage and crinkly it looks now that it has been loved much and washed often. This was also my first "modern" quilt that I completed and kept for myself so it represents an evolution in my personal design aesthetic, which I also like. It also has pieces of fabric from two of my most favourite (and collectible) lines - Hope Valley and Sandi Henderson's Henna Garden prints.

How did you grow as a quilter while making it?

This was the first quilt I made without pulling all the fabric from a single line or a single designer. I started with my focus print as a palette and went from there. I haven't looked back since and I'm so glad. It's so liberating to pick from my whole stash when I want to make something. And speaking of my stash, doing this helped me rethink how I purchase fabric and what I really want to have in my st ash.

If you could make this quilt again what, if anything, would you do differently?

I plan to make this quilt again. The blocks are so big that even though they take a bit of time (although not so much once you get a rhythm going) the top comes together really quickly. I really wanted a Baptist Fan quilting design on it but I was trying out a new machine quilter and she couldn't do that design for me so I went with an open fretwork-type pattern. It's very pretty, but I love the way this quilt looks with fans. It doesn't take away from the quilt at all for me, it's just something I want to see because I like it.

Where is the quilt now?

On the bed in our guest room for the summer. It spent the (endless) winter on our bed as an extra layer of warmth against the deathgrip of cold and snow we faced this past year!

So now I'll link up with Sew Mama Sew and check this off my to-do list. It was a great month. Thank you, Jessica and Sew Mama Sew for a really enjoyable month of blog posts.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

WIP Wednesday - June 25

It's alllllmost the weekend for me - I am taking Friday off and then my employer very graciously gave our entire organization Monday off so that we can have a super long weekend heading into Canada Day on July 1, so that means, tomorrow is my actually my Friday and that would make today Thurs...never mind.

It's WIP Wednesday and I actually have something to show. A friend of mine has asked me to make a baby quilt for a very-soon-to-be-arriving grandbaby. I am so honoured as she asked me to make one when her granddaughter, a little girl, arrived a couple years ago:

Critters are the theme this time as well, but it is woodland animals in general, not just owls. Without further ado, here is my show and tell for today's WIP Wednesday:

Linking up with WIP Wednesday. Thank you for dropping by.


Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Busy as a Bee - June block completed

It is exciting (to me, anyway) to be at the 11th of June and able to say I have completed my bee block commitment for the month. I suppose it helps a little (a lot!) that the Happiness circle of Do Good Stitches is taking the month of June off.

Last year, I participated in the Plum and June New Blogger Hop and it was a great experience. Afterward, some of the participants wanted to remain in touch and decided to start a bee with other new blog hop bloggers. There was sufficient interest to start a Canadian circle with a few spaces left over for friends from around the globe. We named ourselves the Global Scrap Bee and have been going strong since September.

This month, our queen bee is Barb and she chose the Liberated Wedding Ring block made with this tutorial from Little Miss Shabby. This block was simple and fun to make.

I look forward to seeing her finished quilt!

The New Blogger Blog Hop is going on right now, in fact it just got started last week. You should definitely check out Plum and June to see the gorgeous Oakshott projects featured in today's post, but you should also visit the new bloggers and give them some love - this week's list can be found here.

Thanks for stopping by.


Friday, June 6, 2014

Another Brick in the Wall

Today I am excited to share with you a recent finish of mine. This quilt was a gift to my daughter in honour of her university graduation last week.
The fabric is Hope Valley by Denyse Schmidt and is one of my favourite fabric lines ever. The pattern calls for a jelly roll plus a whole lot of backing fabric; in this case, 4 yards of something that looks a lot like Kona PFD.

The pattern is Another Brick in the Wall by Emily Cier of Carolina Patchworks. The quilt top consists of 12 smaller blocks which in turn consist of lots of strippy rows, all pieced together.
Hope Valley was my first introduction to Denyse Schmidt and her lovely fabrics; it remains one of my favourite lines of all time. A lovely lady who lives not too far from me quilted it with a nice, open all-over pattern. I both backed and bound it in more Hope Valley prints and, thankfully, I still have a few scraps left over.

My daughter loves her new quilt and is taking it with her as she works out of town on her first "grown up" job this summer. I'm glad to know it will get lots of use and love!

Thank you for visiting!


Sunday, June 1, 2014

Welcome, June

I am definitely a summer girl. I like autumn a lot and certainly don't hate the other season (although winter was a bit long for my liking, this year) but I much prefer sunshine and hot weather, so June is always a most welcome month. Apart from the warmer season, I always look forward to June because that means April and May are finished with. I have an awesome job that supports my quilting habit but April and May each year are always frantically busy and this year was no exception. They are exciting, there is great energy, and lots of things get done, but wow, tiring! This weekend I finally had an opportunity to dust off my sewing machine and get back to sewing and I quite enjoyed it and look forward to opportunities to be at the machine more frequently going forward. My first order of business was getting my May bee blocks looked after. So, without further ado, here they are:

 Global Stitches Bee - this month, Ruth asked for scrappy star blocks based on this tutorial over at Clover & Violet. The block was simple and quick to make (thank goodness!).

Then there were improv blocks requested by Laura over at the Happiness circle of Do Good Stitches.

There was a university graduation last week so there is actually a quilt finish to show as well, but I need daughter dear to bring her quilt over so I can snap a few photos.

Mmm....the sun on my face, light lasting late into the batteries are recharging like crazy. See you soon!