Monday, August 21, 2017

Backing Things Up

Making quilt backings is probably my least favourite part of the process and can be attested to by the fact that the materials to back my Blue Diamonds - a Kaffe Fassett design - has been sitting on the back of this chair for a few months now. Yes, I said months!

And it's not like that chair is somewhere that I never see it - it's sitting in my kitchen so I see it every day. Sheesh.

It probably didn't help things knowing that it was going to be a pieced back. I found a great piece of pink for it a while back but it wasn't nearly enough so I decided it was a good opportunity to use up whatever bits and pieces of the fabrics that I had used in it.

Finally the spirit moved me but it still took me several hours to get it all together.

I was going to use two large pieces of the pink in the layout but decided at the last minute to save the second piece for the binding, so then the hunt was on to find a replacement. I have more fabric for backings than I care to admit, so with all those blues you would think that shouldn't have been a huge ask, but it turned out to be. Eventually I fournd a combo that would work - I'm not totally over the moon with it, but it works.

So now it's together, but I'm already wondering if the layout works with the front. Guess I'll just have to see what it looks like after it's quilted....M

Friday, August 18, 2017


Not to be outdone by Sandy, Jane had a finish of her own when she and Betty and Sandy were together. She's been working on a gorgeous quilt that she and I designed back in the spring and put the finishing stitches on it two weekends ago. I've been calling it Allspice but apparently Betty has been referring to it as her Jacobean quilt.

When  she was here in the spring she had most of the blocks for the strips finished.

The fabrics are just stunning and when they all came together, even more so.

Here's a closer looks at the different colours used for the narrow strips that run through it. The brown paisley is a print that I had in my stash - love it.

This quilt got Jane through the challenge of this spring's major flooding. Her cottage was under siege from the spring rains the likes of which we had never seen before and was saved from the brink by a small army of volunteers who worked tirelessly for six weeks, not the least of which was her sister Linda. When she had a break she would sit down with her stitching and pray for the best.

Jane has gifted Allspice to Linda as a thank you for all of her support throughout the ordeal, which is beautiful gesture (sisters are the best!). Apparently Roberta will be quilting it and I am so looking forward to seeing the finished product....M

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Quilts In The Garden

Sandy, Jane and Betty were together again recently and Sandy brought a wonderful stack of quilts to show the gals. Thankfully, they took lots of pics in the garden so that I could share her work with you.

To say that she is prolific would be an understatement. Here is the first of three quilts that she finished this year and another two that are in the works.

Sandy also provided some info on the quilts, so here they are, in her words:
"I decided it was time to get my machine out, and do the whole process. This my first attempt (at machine quilting), and I learned a lot ... first, and foremost ... fill a whole bunch of bobbins! Thankfully, this isn't a big quilt, as there's quite a learning process with rolling, pinning, flattening ... swearing!

The walking foot worked very well ... once I finally decided to just guide the fabric, and let it do it's thing.  Being anal, it was freeing to give myself permission to not worry about straight lines, or equal spacing! (Next up is the free motion foot ... 😳).

And this one is made with the leftovers from the first jelly roll, and leftovers from other projects. I'm stunned when I see the tiny piecing you do. On this one, I learned the benefits of spray adhesive!

Betty educated me on soaking quilts, so I look forward to washing these, and hopefully seeing a lot of puckering.

I finished this one with mixed feelings ... excited to see it done, but sad, as the fabric's so soft and buttery to stitch. I found this Moda fat quarter bundle in a beautiful quilt shop in Jordan Station ... and, I loved that it reminds me of my Grandma's house.  

I cut and laid out the pattern before we went to Cozumel and then spent our lazy days under the palm trees stitching it together. It's amazing how many quilters gather to chat when they see a pile of squares! (QuiltBee note to self: book a trip to Cozumel...)

These next two are under way. This one is inspired by a quilt I saw on your blog ... I loved the freshness of it! Many of the patterned fabrics I purchased in a shop on Cozumel, so it seemed only fitting to put it together under the palm trees. I've sandwiched it with a thicker batting, and I think I might just stitch in the ditch ... hopefully to make the triangles nice and puffy.  

My hubby - the Minion fanatic! - found this perfect fabric, and asked me to make him a throw for his "man cave" Lazyboy.  

Just what every 72 year old needs!

I'm excited to get a new project started. It's just soooo hard to decide what it should be ... too many ideas!"

What an amazing trunk show Sandy. You'd never guess that you've been quilting for such a short time - they are all beautiful, and I have it on very good authority, perfectly stitched. We're looking forward to what you dive into next. Thanks so much for sharing!....M

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Tough Love

It's always interesting for me to learn how people came to be quilters. Our good friend Martin started quilting some time after Jane did and has made several beautiful quilts. Betty recently laundered one of them so it got us chatting about how he got started. Jane was the motivator behind that so, here, in her words, is how it went down.

"He was looking through magazines one day at the cottage and comes upon a photo of a quilt on a bed. He says to me, "That's the quilt I'd like you to make for me." I look at it and say, "I would be so bored doing that quilt because it is just big squares put together. If you want that quilt, then you are going to have to make it yourself!" And he replies, "Okay, then I WILL make it myself!"

When he went back to Toronto he went shopping for the fabrics, bought a sewing machine and signed up for a course on how to machine quilt. Within the year he had made the quilt and quilted it. That was about 8 or 9 years ago, and he has since made about six more quilts. I'm proud to have refused his request, because it spurred him on to prove to me that he could make his own quilt."

Appropriately, it's made of a beautiful collection of shirting fabrics (Martin is a clothes horse with amazing taste). He's working abroad right now so the quilt gets to live at Jane's cottage, which isn't a bad deal at all. They also happen to be perfect sand and sea colours for the lake.

Looks like she might have a tussle with Baylea to get it back though...

And since we're talking about Jane, she is just a fountain of knowledge. She sent me these Pinterest words of wisdom a while ago: 'Dinosaurs didn't sew, now they are extinct. Coincidence?' Something to think about 😉....M