Christmas Bargello

Another quilt finish! I took the last few stitches in the binding on this one just before I had to leave to deliver this quilt to the quilt show for this weekend’s quilt show.

My quilt was inspired by a pattern on Bonnie Hunter’s website called, Scrappy Bargello.

My version of this quilt continues the same fabric across the quilt from left to right, unlike Bonnie’s scrappier version where the fabric choices change for each block across the quilt. Since my quilt is made from Christmas fabrics, I am calling my version Christmas Bargello.

I started this quilt on Feb 3, 2008 – Super Bowl weekend. I joined my good friend Linda that weekend in making this quilt. Several other quilters on the Internet were making the same quilt and we started calling the event, Bargellobowl.

Linda and I finished our quilts to the flimsy stage early this year and I quilted mine on March 15 and Linda’s on March 22. Linda was faster to finish off her binding. I guess I needed a deadline like the show to prompt me to finish off the last few feet of binding.

Rooster Twist

I finished up my quilt that was started at our FAB retreat in August. This quilt was a finished flimsy on August 16 Now this quilt is quilted and bound. That must be a record for me–2 months to quilt and bind.

Cher kept me company while I put the binding on this one. There is nothing like a friend to keep you focused on the task at hand. Cher has finished her Strip Twist as well and I believe she has already gifted her quilt to the lucky recipient.

The pattern is called, Strip Twist and is by G.E. Designs.

I am calling my quilt Rooster Twist, named for the fabulous rooster fabric that I used on the borders that I just could not bear to cut up into smaller pieces. I love this fabric just as much now as I did the day I spied it in the fabric shop.

I used to use muslin to back my quilts. I have now decided that the backs need to be darker in colour than beige or white. Now I look for fabric for backing my quilts that will not show the tell tale signs of wear that quilts get with loving use over time.
I love the colour of the fabric on the back of this quilt–I am calling it Carmel. The picture doesn’t do it justice as it has a wonderful swirl pattern to it.

What Quilt is on Your Bed?

Many bloggers have been showing pictures of the quilt that is currently on their bed so I thought I would join in. This is a picture of the quilt that is on my bed right now. This picture was taken just after this top was quilted on my long arm in November 2005.

This quilt was made from the book by Sharyn Squier Craig, and is called, Design Challenge: Half Log Cabin Quilts and is currently out of print.

The following three pictures are of this quilt actually on my bed. Because the bed is large in relation to the room, I can not get back far enough to get a picture of the whole quilt.

Yesterday, my mother, my daughter, and I headed into the 1st Annual BC Creative Expo where my mother and I bought some new software for organizing and scrapbooking our digital photos. These pictures were altered using that program. When I originally took the pictures they were on an angle. The software we purchased allows us to alter the horizon and crop the picture. This is how I have gotten the funky, artsy looking pictures that are cropped with more than 4 sides. I can see I will be playing with this software for some time to come!

This quilt measures 89 1/2″ x 104 1/2″ and was quilted with Aurifil #2445 Dusty Pink thread in the Baptist Fan design. The soft pink thread picks up the odd bit of pink that is in the blue fabrics without being too pronounced. I often get asked if I deliberately picked a thread that would show. Yes, this was a very conscious move and I love the effect.

Machine Quilting

Last Saturday at our guild workshop, I offered to help Kathy with her machine quilting. I brought along some of my smaller quilts to demonstrate that there is a lot you can do to machine quilt your quilts with your domestic sewing machine (DSM) and your walking foot.

Kathy commented that she should be writing down the ideas. No need to make notes, these pictures are posted for you, Kathy.

This first quilt is a rail fence miniature. As long as the curves or arcs are gentle, they can be accomplished quite nicely with a walking foot and there is no need to drop the feed dogs and wrestle with controlling the stitch length and moving the quilt at a steady speed while stitching in free motion.

This quilt was marked with a blue marking pen using the edge of a glass to make the arcs across two strips.

This picture shows the closeup of the stitching on the blocks.

This is the back of the same quilt. The scallop design on the border was accomplished with a stencil. Again the curve is gentle and easily accomplished with the walking foot.

The secondary design was not intentional and has the appearance of the apple core block.

The alternate squares in this miniature nine patch were stitched to look like the nine patch blocks–simple straight lines.

I love it when a secondary design that wasn’t part of the original quilt plan emerges in my quilts. When I finished this log cabin quilt and showed it to my husband he declared that he could find the surprise in my quilt–the birds. This quilt was a simple two colour log cabin and there was no intention on my part to arrange the blocks to form four birds in the four corners of the quilt. Further to that, without realizing it, my quilting accentuated the bird image.

Simple parallel lines at an consistent angle finish off the border.

I believe they call the block in this quilt, Sister’s Choice.

This is my favorite technique for a narrow sashing or border–a serpentine stitch. This stitch is a modified zig zag type stitch on my Bernina.

The border quilting on this quilt is straight lines at a consistent angle spaced in alternating narrow and wide widths.

Banana Bread and the Wicked Easy Quilt

My sewing machine quit part way through yesterday’s workshop. There was a short in the power cord. I have ordered a replacement cord but it hasn’t arrived yet. Since piecing was out of the question today, I had to amuse myself with other activities–after the laundry and vacuuming of course.
I was chatting with Linda J. this morning and we were talking about baking. The discussion ended up with us agreeing that a recipe that included chocolate would be a great idea today. I had bananas to use and I added chocolate chips to the banana loaves I made to be sure and make this a “chocolate Sunday”! I believe Linda J. was making chocolate cake. We wanted to meet for coffee but the distance between us only allows for chats over the Internet and each of us in our own houses with our own cup of coffee. Maybe one day the virtual coffee break will become a reality!

Banana bread has been a favorite in my household for many years. My kids deliberately stop eating bananas when there gets to be only three left in the bowl. They know if they leave them so that they over ripen mom will turn them into banana bread!

I also finished the hand sewing on my Wicked Easy quilt. This project was started in February and finished in March–I don’t think it even made it to the UFO stage because I didn’t leave it to “season” on the shelf!