Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Quilting the Grid with Christina Cameli

I recently finished the Craftsy Class by Christina Cameli called Quilting the Grid:  Structured Free Motion and thought I would do a class review about it.  I'll just start by saying this opened up a whole new world of possibilities!  Loved this class!

Christina suggested that this method of quilting is very good for someone just starting out with free motion quilting because it is much less intimidating to break down huge open spaces into smaller bites at a time.  I would agree with that!

Another advantage Christina points out is having a grid keeps the scale of whatever pattern you are using from drifting and getting smaller than you started out or larger than you started out.  Most of her samples are done on solid fabrics so they are more easily shown, but these motifs will work well on prints as well.
This is a way of doing free motion quilting with a little more structure.  You create a grid with your walking foot:  square, on point, diamond, triangle, radiant, and whatever your imagination can come up with.  This class introduces you to (as Christina says) the magic of geometry!

Here is one of my favorite patterns.  This particular grid starts out by using your walking foot to quilt 60 degree diamonds.  She explains how to do this accurately.  I made my grid lines on this practice piece 1 1/2 inches apart.

Next, quilt across the slimmest part of the diamond to create triangles like this:

Next comes the free motion part.  Quilt an arc on the inside of each triangle and you end up with a kind of floral pattern.    Notice that I am not very consistent with the size of my arcs yet, but even so, the pattern created is beautiful and once you see the overall effect, you won't even notice this.  Loving this texture!

Christina also gives very good instructions about the most efficient way to travel from space to space so you don't get stuck in a corner with no way out.

Here is another practice sandwich experimenting with a variety of patterns inside the grid.  This grid is 2 inches.  I used contrasting thread on this one so I could see what I was doing better.  When you want the texture to be the star, you should probably use thread close to the same color of the fabric you are quilting.   If you want the thread to be the star, then you would chose thread that contrasts more.  Christina shows many, many more patterns to try than I have shown here.  


You can see the texture a little bit better on the back of this practice sandwich:

You can make your grids any size you want using the guide on your walking foot but it gets difficult once you get larger than 3 inches unless you mark the grid on your fabric before you sew.

Here is a word of advice, make some practice sandwiches ahead of time before you take the class so you can put what you're learning into practice as you watch.  I did not do this.  I watched all of the lessons and was eager to try it out but I had to go back and listen to parts again because I couldn't remember how to do it.  Much more efficient to pause the video and practice right then.

I plan to use this method on Ashley's quilt and do a different motif on each different colored strip.  I see that on the orange strip with circles, there is already a natural grid created!  Hmm!  What can I put in those circles?  

I have to say I enjoyed this class very much and if you haven't watched a class by Christina before, I highly recommend her.  She has such a pleasant teaching style and personality.   I loved her Wild Quilting class as well.

I hope this review has encouraged you to try Quilting the Grid!

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Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Stash Bee Block Accumulation


What do you think of this scrappy accumulation?  I am just putting these blocks on the design wall as they come in and looking forward to playing around with a layout later.  It doesn't look that bad with just this random layout!

HST Scrappy Quilt

I realize this kind of anything-goes scrappy look isn't for everybody, but I am loving all the yummy color!  It just reminds me of how someone might have made a quilt back when quilts were a necessity for a warm bed and made of just about anything.  I love the old-fashioned vibe it has.

And now to show you something that you might think me a little bit crazy.  My apologies to my non-quilting friends who probably won't get this next bit.  I'm talking about what I am using for a leader/ender project.  If you are interested in the story behind this phrase, you can read about it here from the creator herself!

I didn't understand what a leader/ender project was but now that I get it, THIS is what I'm using for my leader/enders.  A box of 1 1/2" squares. Years ago this was mailed to me for joining the Keepsake Quilting club.  Swatches of all the fabrics that were available from them that particular year.  I couldn't just throw them out!

First I will sew them all into pairs and when I get that done, I'll start sewing the pairs into cute little four patches.  These finish at 2 inches square.    After that, not sure!  16 patches?  Or just leave them small and cute to be incorporated into a quilt.  We shall see!


After taking a poll about a fabric choice I needed to make (if you missed that post, you can read it here), there was no CLEAR winner.  The top three choices were the red mottled center, the gold with red dot, and the green plaid.  I am going with the gold with red dot. 


I love hearing from you guys so thank you!!  You made the decision process fun!
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Free Motion by the River

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Sewing for Others is Rewarding but Sometimes Stressful!

Do you find that to be true?  I get the biggest rush out of knowing someone truly loves something I have made for them but if you aren't fully acquainted with them and even though they have told you what they like, there are always those niggling doubts.  Is this too bright? too light? too busy? too plain?

This month, Kathleen wants an old fashioned Christmas sampler and here is the fabric pull she provided for us and she said we could make the block of our choice:

Here are the colors I came up with from my stash as close as I could get.

I have chosen to make the Double Star block using part or all of these fabrics.

Now that I have the block mostly sewn together, I have one more decision to make.  What to put in the middle!  I couldn't make up my mind so I would love to take a poll.  Which center do you like the best?  Kathleen for whom this block is being made requested old fashioned forest greens, cranberry reds, old golds and creams instead of whites. 

Which middle do you think looks best?  I love LOTS of input!  Please vote!

1.  Shiny gold floral print

2.  Swirly gold shiny print

3.  Gold with red dot

4. Green plaid

5.  Leafy green

6.  Red and green

7.  Dotted red

8.  Mottled red

9.  Red plaid

I'd love to hear from you!
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Crazy Mom Quilts
Busy Hands Quilts
Can I Get a Whoop Whoop!



Thursday, October 12, 2017

Happy Mail and Next Finish Goal

FINALLY!  I got on the ball and ordered the backing for Ashley's dorm quilt which is my next goal to finish.  I haven't had a finish for a looooong time so I'm motivated to do this.  Here is Ashley's quilt top which hasn't been trimmed yet.

She wanted something soft and cuddly for the back so she  chose a light gray minky which was part of today's happy mail!

Oh!  I forgot that we were going to add some 6 inch borders using the navy, coral and periwinkle floral.   That fabric is her favorite.  Not sure about that decision.  Maybe we just need to use it for the binding and call it good.  Ashley you out there?  Borders or just binding?  What do y'all think?   I don't normally say y'all but my Louisiana friend Sheila is influencing my grammar.  😃

I made two more blocks for my growing collection . . .

And more happy mail from Paulette in Canada.  I love these Paula!  They are the four blocks on the very top row.  Also, I received two identical blocks (aqua with aqua/purple/white print) from Irene Grimes of North Carolina.   Loving all this color!

OK, all you lovers of modern and simplified can skip the next pictures cuz these aren't that.  Hee!  Hee!    When I ordered Ashley's backing, I only needed a little more to get free shipping so I ordered two fabrics . . . this one I like . . .

and this one I love!  LOVE!  LOVE!!  
I used to doodle just like this in high school!

Well, I really should head to bed because in a few short hours I have to get up to drive myself to the airport to see one of my college roommates!  Can't wait, Lorraine!

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Saturday, October 7, 2017

What is Wrong With This Picture?

So here are the blocks I have made so far including the first two blocks to arrive in the mail from Mary Ann.  Thanks Mary Ann!!  You sewed all yours together correctly, whereas me?  Not so much.  Can you see the goof in this picture? I had it laid all out perfectly but managed to turn one square the wrong way.



I am loving this scrappy look!  I don't know if they will stay in this particular order.  Probably not.  As I get more blocks come in from my Stash Bees, I'll probably arrange and rearrange many times.  I am trying to use only fabrics from my stash so there are going to be some oldie moldies in there.   Here is the next block cut out and ready to sew together.

I'll show you a few that I've been auditioning.  The one with a black background I bought at a yard sale of a lady who was destashing.  Some of the fabrics I bought from her are over 20 years old!  I think this is one of them.  But I love it.  I'm going to put this marigold, orange and pink with it.  Some of you who like modern and clean might be going "Ewwww,  that's too busy!  Print on print?  Yuck!"  But there's something about it I really like.  I think this will be my next addition!


Here are a few more potential candidates . . .






Which ones do you like the best?


As I was taking pictures of these fabrics, I somehow turned the camera around and shot myself instead.  Sheesh!

Here's a better, not so grumpy looking me.

I am having a love affair with this particular color on my shirt.  Here's another place I spied this color.   LOVE it!  I didn't know what kind of flower this was and found out from Paige at Quilted Blooms it is called Celosia (or as Karen at Quilts, Etc. reminded me) also is called Cockscomb.


Hope you're having a creative day!

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

Guess What I'm Going to Do With This?

As you know, I just recently moved into a my forever home (yes, I will have future posts with pictures, hang in there!).  As I was unpacking,  I found 10 orphan blocks that I had started sewing together years ago and never did anything with them.  My intention was to make a scrappy round the world quilt.  I've kind of moved on to other things and I don't think that is going to happen; however, I am not going to let these blocks go to waste!


So I found a fun little project that I am going to use these. for that's just slightly different than what you're probably used to seeing on quilting blogs.  Can anybody guess?

OK, I won't make you guess.  I am going to take this nasty old card table . . .

do this to the legs . . .


Sew my blocks together to cover the top . . .


And last but not least, sew some sides to cover up the ugly old hinges.  So dear quilt friends out in blogland, here is where you come in.  My plan is to cut about six inch strips to hang down on each side of the table so it will be kind of like a box valance.   I would love to hear suggestions on what color fabric you would use and how you would finish it.  This little project is going to give an ugly card table new life,  brighten up my quilt room, and give me a little more table top space for either setting my laptop or maybe this will be where I keep my rulers.  We shall see!

P.S.  I'm going to paint that ugly old filing cabinet in the background a pretty color too one of these days.  I want LOTS of color in this sewing room!



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