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!

Quilting and String Blocks

Although I haven’t been posting, I have been busy working on quilting activities–most of them have been customer quilts so there hasn’t been much to show.

I did finish quilting my Wicked Easy Quilt this past week. I quilted it with a zigzag design and random stars. The stars made for a lot of stopping and starting–it took all of Friday to tie off the threads and bury them in the quilt. I have never been a fan of back stitching to finish off my stitching. I prefer to hand tie knots in the threads and bury the ends inside the quilt sandwich so this takes quite a bit of time.

These are some pictures of the quilting detail.

I was also tempted to make some string blocks. This is a picture of the 10 blocks I made today.

These blocks are made using used dryer sheets as foundations–6″ x 8 1/2″. I understand why everyone has started making these–they are incredibly fast and easy to make. Today while taking to my Mom on the phone, I made two from start to finish–including the trimming. They are also “feel good” blocks because you realize that every block you make you are decreasing your pile of useless strings. Less strings means you can free up space in those totes and drawers that we all have bulging with fabric.

I like how Patti set her blocks together and I am thinking about doing something similar. I think she really made her blocks pop with the use of the narrow sashing and cornerstone between the four blocks contrasting against the wider sashing and cornerstones outside the group of four blocks. Excellent idea!

Wicked Easy Quilt – Flimsy

Today was a beautiful sunny day! We are considering today’s weather a bonus as the forecast was for rain and we got sun. Since my regular quilt hanger was not home and his sister is much shorter and does not have near the arm span, I took this quilt top outside and hung it from the deck for the picture. It is not every day that I get the option to take my quilt pictures outside.

I finished this Wicked Easy Quilt to the flimsy stage this morning. I did make a slight modification from the pattern. The pattern called for a “flap” as an inner border instead of a regular border. A note in the pattern indicated that if you intended to have the top quilted by a long armer, you might want to reconsider inserting the flap and just continuing on with the outside border. I like the looks of the inner border (red in my quilt) and I definitely plan on quilting this one on the long arm so I inserted a narrow 1″ regular border in place of the flap. The pattern mentioned that the inclusion of the inner border would anchor the quilt and give the eye a place to rest. I definitely think the inner border adds to this quilt–especially if you are using busy fabrics like I have. I had to insert a small block in the outer border to compensate for the increase in size of the outer border but because this quilt is pieced in a random sort of way, I don’t think it detracts from the overall quilt.

This afternoon while I was out running errands and grocery shopping, I stopped by the local quilt shop and picked up some batting so that I can begin quilting this one tomorrow.

Wicked Easy Quilt

I decided to take Judy up on her February Stash Reduction Challenge and try out a pattern that Linda J sent me at the same time.

Judy has asked us to dig a piece of fabric out of our stash that we have been saving and use it in the month of February. There was no one single piece of fabric that stood out in my stash, but there was this bundle of fat quarters from Teresa Kogut’s Williamsburg fabric line that I won at my quilt guild meeting in June. I have been looking for just the right pattern that wouldn’t require the fabric to be cut up into too small of pieces as some of the prints are large and I did not want to loose the design in the cutting process. This pattern is called, Wicked Easy Quilt by Annie Unrien. With a name like, Wicked Easy, I just had to give this one a try.

My quilt still requires the borders, but so far, I can say that this is a super simple pattern that would be well suited for charity quilts.