Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September Finishes!!! DID IT!

Here's  my "AYOLF"  goal completed!!!  Yee ha!!!!!  Yes it took a long time and crazy quilting - over 20 hours really.  I was on strike for two weeks in September which meant walking the strike line, and busy and stressed with that.  But I did it!!!

A Lovely Year of Finishes
Quilting on the top part
Material Girls's quilt all quilted.  It looks great with its binding and all of the blocks done. It's on the bed and staying there.  About 16 hours of quilting on this one.

Here are a lot more pictures to show off my "AYOLF" done!!!

Cloes up quilting

SOOOOOO big!!! And comfy.
Here are many of my BOMs:
  • Aurifil September completed
  • Prairie Flower #12 to do.  Last one!! Now corners to do.
  • Vice Versa 
    • August and September to do.  2 blocks for each month.  But I didn't do either.  Being on strike doesn't give you more time, just more stress!!!
  • Galaxy of the Stars -
    •  July, and August done!!  

August.  Need to do a second one
  • Block Lotto pattern
    • Didn't do any this time.  My goodness I'm 2 months behind!!!  Need to catch up!!
  • Crafty 2012 BOM  - September to do.  October will put it together.
  • Globe Trotting 2014 Mystery Quilt -
      • August is completed.
      • September is completed.  See the picture above.:

  • Doodle Design - September done to complete, a tree.
  • Sycamore Rose
    • OK, I'm really going crazy on this one and I'm so behind!!!
 Look at all the pieces on Flickr by Sycamore Rose.
  • Free Motion Quilt along  - been free motion quilting now on all my quilts lately.  But this is the course to teach me different styles so I need to get going.  My promise to myself to get some of these done one day.
    • Blocks 1 and 2
    • Block 2 - 3 styles  - 
    Block 3
    • Block 3 - 4 styles - got them made and here they are on my flickr!!!  Sorry, missing one here in the picture.  The love one was really hard to do, but fun to try for the first one.  I need practise on that one.
    • Block 4 - 4 styles - not done
    • Block 5 - 4 styles    - not done
    • Block 6 - 4 styles.    - not done, Darn!!
  • Apple Thangles -didn't touch this this time!!!
Here are my 2014 NewFO Challenges.
each square finishes at 2 inches.
So this was the goals of September.  Many have been completed or started.  Really happy with the lot of it..

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Practising my Free Style Quilting

A long arm does beautiful work but if I hire someone to use one for every quilt I have, all my quilts would be very expensive, and as you can see there are many that are UFOs to finish.  I have 3 right now that need quilting, and all three would cost me approximately $400 to get done.  Not that it's not worth it, just my pocketbook says no. ;)

So to cut down on the cost somewhat I'm taking the course "Free Motion Quilt Along" that goes at your pace, has great videos by Leah and her husband, and work well in my schedule.  The results - I've done the first 3 patterns, and each pattern has three squares to try a different style.  Here are the results:

Each one completed.  The results:  I need to practise more on circles, and swirls, but the straight, in my mind, is well done.  You'll notice the growth right away.

1st attempt

2nd attempt - much better.  

Wow!!  Need more practise here!!

Straight is not the problem...  Looking good.

Circles are getting better
Need to take my time.
Best one yet.  Swirls are better if I'm slower.

Third block has been created, the pattern on two traced, just need to sew them.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Guild Challenge - need help.

My Guild is going to do a Quilt Show in 2015 and as part of the preparation, they set up a challenge called "Back to Basics".   The challenge is to make a 24" by 24" quilt that uses a well known quilt block.  You use only two colours or variations of those colours that you picked out of a bag.  I got purple and green.  When done you include the name of your quilt block on your label.  That's it.

I was considering just doing squares and making another pixelated quilt like this diagram that I made

 Using these colors
(it's Violets because of the purple and green), but it's not a traditional quilt block but it does do just squares.  The question is can I do this?

Or I can do this one. the Midnight Garden by McCalls.

Could do it in purple.  
See my material?  What do you think.  I need help!!!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Finished a few today.

Here's my Quilt Doodle Design for September.  Nice sky, and another tree.  One more block or rather row to go and this quilt BOM will be completed.  It will be the 3rd one completed this year.  Truly this one has been so much fun, the design outstanding, and perfect for this year's Christmas time for a throw on the couch.  I look forward to completing this quilt.

Here is Pat Sloan's Globe Trotter Block for August and September.  I'm still not crazy about the colours but maybe the sash will add spice.  Who knows.

And then there is my favourite, the Aurifil BOM with special guests every month.  This one was tough, the block sizes were from 2 1/2 inches to 1 inch blocks, and it was very important that all sizes were accurate.  But it's the fabric that is really making a difference.  Check it out.  The colors are blues with pink flowers, and rid with pink flowers.  The squares are yellow with light pink flowers and then the stars are pink themselves.  It all came together even better then it looks here.   In the end this quilt will be all flowers, looking like gardens of flowers together.
I also worked for an hour on my Debbie Mumm pattern which is the stashing for the quilt. This is the last month for that BOM, and it's all coming together now, with some really interesting sights.  The stars, the colours, the entire design was fabulous.  I'll try to finish it this month and include it with the final "List of things done".

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Pixelating my quilt - Tutorial.

Excel sheet with colours all numbered.
See key below to understand.
I've been working on a pixelated quilt that I learned from Crafty.  I calculated how much material I would need if I made the quilt out of 2 and a half inch squares.  in the end they will be 2 inch squares.  Once I did that I used the excel sheet I made and started to place my squares.  By using an excel sheet with the picture as the background I was able to place my picture in the 
background (see Background section under Layout).

I used an online web site that will accept pictures and pixelated the picture for me.  It's at Patchwork Pattern Maker at this link.     It's free but you do need an account to save your stuff.  Otherwise you're doing a screen shot.  

Then using the colour bucket (see below)
I was able to colour over the picture the colours I wanted to use, and then use each colour with a letter so I could count up the letters .   The paintbucket icon is located here in Word:

See paintbucket above to the right.

Key of squares and yardage.
That's what gave me the key to see how many squares I needed.  Then I took that number and times it by 2 and 1/2 inches to see the approximate amount of inches.  Don't forget that there are 1512 inches in a yard of material that is 115 cms across.  When I got the number in the 4th column shown here I did a guesstimate, and that gave me the approximate yardage of material I needed.  Remember, this is a guesstimate and it's better to over estimate then under, in case you need more material.  I underestimated the gold, was short, so I used more gray and tan/yellow to make up for it.  

To understand the full formulas you could go to Craftsy and take Carol Sheridan's course on "Pictures to Pixel Quilts".  It's free and well worth the time.  She does a great job of teaching. 

Squares on the interfacing.

When you have all the squares cut you can then follow the map you made (the excel sheet) and start placing the squares on a large piece of light interfacing (the very cheap stuff will work).  You place the squares side by side in rows, as straight as you can, horizontally and vertically.  There is some stuff you can buy from quilt places like light interfacing but it contains pre-drawn square sections to help you line up your squares - but interfacing works the same way and my squares are fairly straight.  See to the right.

Placement of sqaures.
Here is a bigger picture for you to see what I mean.  My squares all ready, the iron, and interfacing to do a small section I needed.  It is my recommendation that you do the length of the quilt when placing your squares, right across.  And do 10 at a time, to have a good section.  When all is placed, I just place the iron on top of the squares for a few minutes, then lift straight up, move to a new section (place iron straight down), then up and to a new section, etc.  Do not run it side to side, you may get some of the interfacing glue on you, or you may lift one of the squares.  

Press the other side when you have pressed
straight down on the side ofthe squares.
When you have pressed all squares straight down,  then you can turn over the section, and iron side to side.

Now you sew the sections together.  It's simple.   You fold the sections over at where the squares meet then you just sew 1/4 inch each section, one after the other, etc.  It down not matter if you do this vertically or horizontally.  I've done both.  Make sure you're accurate with the 1/4 inch on all the squares.  

All sections sewn.
Once you've sewn them all you need to iron the seams down in the same direction, then clip between the sections so you can then sew the other direction down (vertically or horizontally.  See the cuts below.  Some do go across the sewing line but not by much, and when you sew in the other direction you will go over these cuts.  Once you've sewn the other sides of the squares, you can iron down the seams again.

Cuts so you can fold the squares to sew again.

Here's my quilt so far, from far it is starting to look like a sunflower.

So happy!  I'll share a picture of the final quilt when it's down.  
I hope this tutorial helped somewhat.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Been hand sewing lately....

I can't seem to get motivated to sew lately.  So when my husband gets tired of me wandering around the condo, being too lazy to get the sewing machine out and sewing, he nags me enough that I grab one of my hand sewing pieces and that's what I'll do.  I finished two of them today.  The Prairie flower has been worked on all August but I was able to finish it today. That was the 11th block and I have one more to do before the corners.  Can you see the light at the end of the tunnel?!!!  

Pairie Floswers #11
 The other one was a cross stitch, Very small, but still nice.
Hand stitched.
Happy that something is getting down.  

To Do list for September - AYOLF and my New FO Challenge

Well another month coming and I have the Guild to think about the 2nd week of September.  I want to show them the many things I've done this summer but I don't want to show them any of the blocks of the months until they are completed.  So I'm showing them my "AYOLF"s.  And here this this months goal:

A Lovely Year of Finishes
Material Girls's quilt just didn't materialize for the past two months.  Didn't get to the squares that still need to be quilted.  But it looks great with its binding and most of the blocks done.  Just need to sit down and complete it.  Should take about 6 hours.  This is my next "AYOLF".  

Here are many of my BOMs to complete.
  • Aurifil September to do. 
  • Prairie Flower #12 to do.  Last one!!
  • Vice Versa August and September to do.  2 each month.  
  • Galaxy of the Stars - have July to do and I didn't get the pattern for August so I have to tell the girls.
  • Block Lotto pattern
    • June - It's a sun!!!  Only got one done but I need to catch up.
    • July - spokes pattern.  Had 6 done but need to do 8 more..
    • September to do.
  • Crafty 2012 BOM  - September to do.  October will put it together.
    • Globe Trotting 2014 Mystery Quilt -
      • August
      • September
    • Doodle Design - September to complete, a tree.
  • Sycamore Rose
    • block-2  (February)  -  Half way done.  Took it on a plane trip but not yet done.  5 more leaves to do.  Boy, am I behind!
    • block-3  (March) - not done.
    • block 4 (April) - not done.
    • Block 5 - May - not done.
    • Block 6 - June - not done.
    • Block 7 - July - not done. 
    • Block 8 - August. - not done.
    •  Block 9 not done.
    • Block 10 not done.
    • Block 11 not done.
    • Block 12 not done.  
 Look at all the pieces on Flickr by Sycamore Rose.
  • Free Motion Quilt along  - been free motion quilting now on all my quilts lately.  But this is the course to teach me different styles so I need to get going.  My promise to myself to get some of these done one day.
    • Block 2 styles 
    • Block 3 - 4 styles
    • Block 4 - 4 styles
    • Block 5 - 4 styles   
    • Block 6 - 4 styles.    
  • Apple Thangles - need to do two sections.
Here are my 2014 NewFO Challenges.
  • Modern quilt that I have cut out - green and purple for the newFO Challenge and preparing it for the "Modern Quilt" Flickr Group.
  • Make a Carpenter Star for the New FO Challenge.  Only did a couple of squares. The AYOLF is just taking all of my time.  But it is my next one for September!!!  I always wanted to do one.
  • Continue on with my Pixulated quilt that I started on Crafty!!!  I have 3 sections completed, and continuing on with the others.  It's starting to look like the sunflower picture I did.  I'm so excited and really enjoying the free class at Crafty.  YOU HAVE GOT TO TRY IT!!! This was another New FO Challenge linked here.  
each square finishes at 2 inches.
So this is the goals of September.  Good luck to me.