Sunday, October 19, 2014

And the RJR bundle goes to...

Thanks to everyone who entered the RJR Fabrics What Shade Are You? Giveaway to win this lovely bundle of Cotton Supreme Solids!

Of the 88 entries, Random.Org has chosen #20.

True Random Number Generator  20Powered by RANDOM.ORG
#20 is delaineelliott.

Please join me in congratulating Delaine!

Friday, October 17, 2014

RJR Blog Hop: What Shade Are You?

If you know me, you know I love working with solids! So I was more than happy when RJR Fabrics invited me to participate in their blog hop: What Shade Are You?  

As part of the blog hop, I got to work with their Cotton Supreme Solids collection. I chose to work with this lovely set of blues, yellows, and pinky-purples. 

From these fabrics, and a few Cotton + Steel basics, I created Bolt. 

RJR Blog Hop_Bolt

Bolt gets her name because she reminds me of a bolt of lightening blazing through the sky. She measures 48" by 60" and is made up of Birds in the Air blocks.

I quilted Bolt using straight lines spaced about half an inch apart. These straight lines give Bolt lots of texture.

RJR Blog Hop_Closeup1

It was a pleasure working with the Cotton Supreme Solids. I love how vibrant the colors are and how lovely they coordinate with the Cotton + Steel basics.

If you want to see other quilts from the blog hop, check out the RJR Fabrics Facebook page. If you'd like to purchase Cotton Supreme Solids, you'll find them at Pink Castle Fabrics.

RJR Fabrics is giving away a bundle of the Cotton Supreme Solids that I used to make Bolt. If you'd like a chance to win, please leave a comment. I will choose a winner randomly. The giveaway is open to folks in the U.S. and Canada. I'll leave the giveaway open until Sunday, October 19th at 9:00 p.m. EST.  Good luck!

The giveaway is closed.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Sew Mama Sew/Oakshott Table Linens Challenge

Sew Mama Sew and Oakshott Fabrics challenged me to make something for the table using the Lakes collection, a beautiful set of blues, purples, and teals. I challenged myself to make something meaningful after reading Thomas Knauer's Modern Quilt Perspectives (more on that here).

Oakshott stack

My response to both challenges is the Connect the Dots table runner.

Connect the Dots Table Runner

When I think of sitting around the table for a meal with friends and family, I think about the connections that we make as we share thoughts and experiences. The idea of connections got me thinking about circles. I made the circles different sizes to represent the different people that sit around the table, from the littlest ones to the biggest. The circles overlap to reflect the shared experiences and relationships, like a Venn diagram.

To make Connect the Dots, I appliqued the circles onto the background fabric and quilted them with lots of paisleys. I kept the theme of connections going with the quilting by using the same thread on all the circles and overlapping the paisley design across the circles.

Connect the Dots Table Runner_Closeup1

For the background, I quilted back-and-forth lines as a contrast to the curves of the circles and paisleys.

Connect the Dots Table Runner_Closeup2

I enjoyed working with the Oakshott fabrics. The colors are vibrant and the fabrics are lightweight, making them perfect for applique since they don't add a lot of bulk.

Now that Connect the Dots is done, I think it's time to invite a few friends over for a meal, don't you? Connect the Dots will be my reminder to make the most of the opportunity to connect with others.

If you'd like to make your own Connect the Dots table runner, check out my free pattern. Connect the Dots measures 16" by 64."

For more ideas for the table using Oakshott fabrics, check out these sites:

Mary Claire King at Remember Wren
Michelle White at Falafel and the Bee
Jessica Skultety at Quilty Habit
Sara Peterson at knottygnome crafts
Anjeanette Klinder

And stay tuned to Sew Mama Sew for a giveaway of a Oakshott fabric bundle!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

On Making Meaningful Quilts

I've been trying to hold off buying more quilting books since my bookcase can't hold any more books. I have a thing for books, just like I have a thing for fabric. Perhaps you can relate?

But I just couldn't resist getting Thomas Knauer's Modern Quilt Perspectives.  Now that I have the book, I am wondering where it has been all my quilting life!

Modern Quilt Perspectives

As with most quilty books, Modern Quilt Perspectives is full of beautiful quilts, but what I'm enjoying most about the book is the writing. Imagine that - actually reading a quilting book, rather than just looking at the pictures!

Thomas writes about making quilts that mean something. He says:
This book, taken as a whole, attempts to express just how complicated, tragic and wonderful life is. It strives to bring voice to that reality and hopefully to inspire others to think deeply about their practice...I hope these quilts will resonate with readers and bring form to concerns and passions that they may share. But more than anything, I hope it serves as a stepping-off point for thousands of new quilts, new voices and new ideas (p. 12).
As I read through the book, I find myself wanting to craft quilts that "bring form" to my concerns and passions. That is, to not just make quilts that I think look cool, but to make quilts that reflect the things that matter to me the most.

That is my challenge as I contemplate what to do with this stack of Oakshott cottons.

Oakshott stack

Friday, October 10, 2014

A Friday Flannel Finish!

Allow me to introduce my Anna Maria Horner magic numbers flannel quilt!

Anna Maria Horner Flannel Quilt_Finished

She measures 88" by 96", making her large enough to cover my bed. She is flannel on the front and back, which means she weighs a ton and will be extra cozy for the colder months.

I quilted her with an allover paisley design. The flannel is so thick that the thread sinks into it, showing nothing but texture.

Anna Maria Horner Flannel_Close Up

To get a better view of the quilting, check out the back.

Anna Maria Horner Flannel Quilt_Back

I found the perfect fabric for the binding - a nice, small scale burgundy print.

Anna Maria Horner Flannel Quilt_Binding

For more on my process of making this quilt and magic number quilts, check out this post: Magic Numbers.

I don't even know how long I've been working on this quilt, but it seems like a while. Having my vision of this quilt become a reality is satisfying, but I'm sad to see the process of working with these fabrics come to an end. It's a good thing I have a few scraps left over. I may have to stitch up a matching doll quilt for my girls!

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Almost Finished

This weekend I was on a mission: finish the Anna Maria Horner flannel quilt!

Anna Maria Horner Flannel Quilt_quilting

I worked on it in small chunks of time here and there and finished the quilting. I blocked and trimmed the quilt. All that's left is to bind it.

I found the perfect fabric for the binding at my LQS. It's one of the Bear Essentials from P & B Textiles. I was thinking of using a solid for the binding, but once I saw this fabric, I knew it was the one.

Anna Maria Horner Flannel Quilt_Binding fabric

Now to wrestle this huge quilt through my machine for binding. If you're looking for me, you'll know where to find me. 

Friday, October 3, 2014

Let the quilting begin!

This week in North Carolina has been warmer than usual, but I'm not letting that stop me from working on my Anna Maria Horner flannel quilt.

I like to have my bobbins all wound and ready for stitching before I start quilting. I'm hoping 6 bobbins will be enough for this quilt, but I may have to wind some more before I'm done.

Anna Maria Horner Flannel Quilt_bobbins

Now that my bobbins are ready and my quilt layers are loaded, it's time to let the quilting begin!

Anna Maria Horner Flannel Quilt_Long arm quilting