Tag Archives: scrap quilts

The Stars Are Out Again

After a long break (last touched in December), I worked on the Irish Star quilt along (button in side bar). It is more a quilt echo along now. WeddingDressBlue has moved on to another very interesting tutorial/quilt along.

1 stars

It is a nice change from the recent improv art project to do some repetitive chain piecing. There are things I like (and dislike) about each approach; moving among approaches smooths my interests out.

Now the plan had been to sort and put fabric away before starting a new project. Ah, but this isn’t a new project. (Rationalizing is one of my strong points.) I’d started on a stack on the table and these were at the bottom and just irresistible.  I also need to oil the machine and change the needle before I sew much more. Maybe tomorrow.

Now I have only four stars to go before I can plan the layout–my favorite part! This will be a good thing to do on one day of social distancing–now become stay-at-home. I really want to have time to sew all the parts together once it is lain out.

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4 Stars–and Not a Book Review

When I once said I wasn’t quilting because I was reading, one of my friends chided me for not doing both. Sounded reasonable, so I tried. Yesterday I planned to read a bit then sew.  Nope. Too easy to get into one-more-chapter mode. Today I tried sewing first. Has potential (unless a due date at library looms).

So I made four stars for the Irish Stars #2 quilt. (You are not surprised that I am working on a top instead of the sandwich pinning, are you?)

1 4 stars

I guess my reading attention span is longer than my sewing span because I stopped for lunch then pulled out my book. But not before laying out a little sample of finished look.

1 star layout

I explained earlier (here) why the alternating square blocks are still in strips. (I will admit to being surprised that is has been on the back burner since April. Old blog posts keep me honest.) Mine is the 2 1/2-inch square version.  Deanna, of Wedding Dress Blue, made the 1 1/2-inch square version, and it is her header photo (here); she also has a tab for the quilt along where the tutorial can be found.

Should take a couple days to finish the stars (depending on how interesting the reading), then out comes the design bed for lots of fun layout pondering and moving of pieces. Then sewing real fast so I can have a living room again.

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Baby Quilt Tops

It’s that time of year when my local guild gives quilts to the fire fighters Toy and Joy program: doll/teddy bear quilts for the toy program and baby quilts for the emergency vehicles’ use when evacuation of the little ones is necessary. Previously the guild gave 100 of the baby quilts; the fire fighters told us they could use double that many. I have five tops–each is 36 x 36, the size requested. The first three are from my collection of lotto block winnings. This last batch must have been from a blue and yellow month.

1 all lotto

This first one was made the easy way, all lotto blocks. The Sunshine Online Quilt Guild (now on MeWe.com) is a friendly group that makes quilts for two charities: Wrap a Smile and Quilts Beyond Borders. The lotto is a monthly project. Those who want to participate make blocks in pairs; each pair is an entry.  One stays with the coordinator who makes heaps of quilts from them for each of the charities, and one goes into the “pot.”  The winner of the “pot” is free to do whatever they want with their bounty.Sometimes we give them to the two named groups; sometimes, as this time, locally.

The next two needed filler.

1 lotto star flowr

1 lotto sailboat

Now, adding four squares isn’t a big deal in itself; it is schlepping the bins of fabric to get to the one that has the relevant fabric that slows me down. For this sailboat one I have some anchor print flannel for part of the backing. I’ll add a piece to make it the right size.  Luckily three of the five will have backing made from single pieces, but then my stash pieces got smaller.

I haven’t played lotto for a while. The novelty of finding ways to use a collection of random blocks has worn off, and I now prefer designing the whole quilt.

Back when Sunshine had a retreat we were all making blocks for the retreaters to assemble.  I kept 9 for a baby quilt.

1 mendota

It is good to have a dark quilt top because some of the flannel I was gifted is dark. It will go fine here. It looks like I have used two shades of blue, but it is all from the same piece: just cut in different directions. If I had it to do over, I’d have split the border top and bottom better. I was aiming to keep the off-centered look, and overdid it I think.

This last one is from scraps.

1 argyle-domino

I even remember the project that left two of the fabrics: the argyle print came from a group project (here) , and the domino dot fabric purchased for use (here)–but  used here. The blocks are 6 inches finished; the scraps were large.

There is one lone lotto block left.  It is a butterfly pattern and will stand alone nicely in a doll quilt, should there be time.

Linking with Oh Scrap! and I’ll link up with Let’s Make Baby Quilts second Friday–this post, or maybe even the finish. (Link when available)

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Return to Improv and Scraps

Back in the day (here) I started an improv for the Academy of Quilting class with Elizabeth Barton. I chose this exercise because it sounded the fastest. Wrong. I think  spent more time on it than on the two small color studies I recently finished! A piece would look flat after pressing. Then when a new piece was added, it bulged in an old seam, not the new one. I haven’t figured that one out yet. It meant lots of corrective seams and darts.

Anyway, the top is finished now. (Some very pretty curved seams will disappear into “hidden” seams. Oh well . . .

4-patch top finished

38 x 43 inches

Once the top was finished, some fabric turned into scraps.  So I decided the back should be a big four patch.

4-patch back

I hadn’t started out to make the corners not meet; however, the orange piece was all I had, so I decided it was fitting to be unmatched since the front was purposely unmatched. (The light green wasn’t big enough either, but I did have enough to piece it.)

I still had more scraps so I made a scrappy binding (before they got mixed in with outer scraps).

4-patch binding

I carefully laid it out along the quilt to see how the colors worked with the top and to be sure I didn’t have a seam at the corners. However, I laid it out on the front, and I will be sewing it onto the back. The corners will still work.  I’ll just wait and be surprised at how the front looks when it is finished.

Do you make scrappy bindings? If so, how much do you plan them. I’ve been saving left overs from binding quilts, planning on a more random scrappy binding someday instead of a color coordinated one. Someday I’ll have a quilt that that will be appropriate for. Oh, while stitching pieces together, I learned that each join takes up 2 inches.

On a more scrappy note yet, I tackled some leaders/enders. I was running out of 2-inch squares to attach so needed something new. The pile looked big enough to do “something” with.

I have no idea what the plan was when I started these. I pondered between making 4- or 16- or 20-patch blocks. Four-patch blocks sounded easier, so I went with that. I have 80 sets pinned and ready to be Leaders-and-enders.

A baby quilt (36 x 36) would take 72, so that is the current plan. I’ll alternate a 4-patch with a plain square. If I have enough coordinating 3 1/2-inch squares, I’ll continue scrappy; if not it will be a half-scrap project. The left over 8 will become something else.

Although a leader-ender project feels like it happens by magic, there are moments of preparation needed, like this one.

Check in with Kate of Tall Tales from Chiconia to see other Scrap Happy folks’ accomplishments.

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QBB’s FQ Challenge

A little alphabet soup for the soul. Never did like chicken soup.

QBB = Quilts Beyond Borders, an organization that gives quilts to children in need in many places. The above link tells about their Fat Quarter (FQ) challenge as well as the organization. QBB is a group that Sunshine Online Guild donates to, so I had heard of them.   Recently they had a booth at the Clark County Quilt Show that I attended.

So I selected a bright geometric print, thinking it would be a focus fabric to which I could add solids. It came with a pattern, Rainbow’s End, a Villa Rosa Design. A nice pattern, but the block involved 6 equal weight squares.

Here it is, laid out.

QBB challenge

I had not anticipated the dark blue and green squares ending up adjacent. I almost like that it looks like a rectangle instead of two squares.  And if I had it to do over, I’d have used a different yellow. The other yellow fabrics I had on hand were worse than this one.

It is an easy to assemble block; the layout of blocks takes a bit of concentration, but with the help of the picture on the pattern, I got it right after a couple tries.

I think the pattern has great potential for scrap quilts. I’m not sure if I’d try to make a pattern by color of scrap square or simply go for a random look. (It may be decided by what color of squares I have.) I’ll have to see if my 4-inch square pile has anything resembling 120 squares. It also might be hard to have enough large scraps for the purist to make the background scrappy–guess that depends on how one defines ‘scraps.’

If you want to see quilts made from actual scraps, vist Kate’s Scrap Happy list.

 

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Irish Star #2

Finishing up the instant-gratification Irish Star (here) put me in the mood to get back to the “real” one. And now that I am finished with projects that had deadlines, I can. So I got out what I had sewn so far and pressed seams.

irish star 25-blocks

I thought I had finished all the pieces I could for the 25-square blocks but was disappointed to learn I had only half of the two-square pieces sewn. So there is more leader/ender work to do (and plenty of scrap squares).

You may wonder why the blocks are not finished. Well, I made a design decision at the beginning that creates a SLOW process; I decided each star would have its own background neutral.  Sounded good in the abstract. Then I realized that meant I had to wait till I saw where the stars would be to know which neutral to put where. And of course, arranging the stars will be the first design decision I’ll be making in the layout of the whole quilt. So all I can do now is have the strips readied since every strip touches a background square.

After I make the stars, I’ll get out the design wall, place the stars, then start placing the strips and finish the blocks. Before I get to that, I have to finish cutting the star pieces. I cut four sets, but then I ran out of background scraps.  I’ve come to some more in my scrap pressing, so I hope I have enough for the 13 blocks needed.  I have plenty of solid and read-as-solid scraps.

I think it would be too confusing to make the stars as leaders/enders so I’ll set aside a couple days to work on them, and I’ll make up the missing 34 pairs as leader/enders. Shouldn’t take too long. I’m planning a 50 x 70 inch quilt.

Monday is Scrap Happy day (here), and I’ll be linking with Oh Scrap! tomorrow and maybe with  I May Have a Scrap Problem Wednesday. Links to follow.

 

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Irish Star — Finished

Imagine, a scrap quilt post on Scrap Happy day!  I’ll admit to having been scrap delinquent lately. This top was completed a couple years ago at the guild’s fall retreat. Then it went to the black hole called “to be quilted.”  Thanks to the guild quilt show needing more quilts this year, it is now quilted and bound.

1 Irish chain finished

45 x 45 inches

Deanna of Weddingddressblue started the quilt-along back then. Designed as a relaxed pace, leader/ender project, it is still ongoing, in case you are interested.  She gave directions for 1 1/2-, 2-, 2 1/2-inch squares. I had 3 1/2-inch strips left over from Urban Chickens. (I had cut a 3 1/2-inch strip from each solid I owned and selected from the strips four squares for each Urban Chicken block. That left a lot over for a rainy day.) So I calculated the star pieces to go with the alternating 25-square block. Luckily I had 5 strips long enough to make the stars–seaming two to get the 6 1/2-inch star center. While I know where the solids came from, I have no idea what the original project was for the background pieces, bona fida scraps, they.

Even the back is made mostly from left-overs.  When making the back for Weather Watching, I needed more than one width of fabric of each color. I just sewed two full strips instead of dealing with exact measurement. I’d thought it would make the complete back for this one, but not quite. So I added the beige.

1 Irish chain back

The back has more of the look of using up the left overs than I like. It isn’t as logical a mate for this top as it was for Weather Watching. I realized too late that I could have cut the strips in half and reversed one and gotten more of a designed look.  But I wasn’t distressed enough to rip and resew.

Even the binding is a left over from the group quilt, What If? This is as close to wholly scrap quilt as I have ever gotten.

If you enjoy scrap projects, visit Kate’s Tall Tales from Chiconia blog around the 15th of each month.  I’ll also be linking with Oh Scrap! when the time comes. Till then, button in the side bar.

ETA I have another Irish Star quilt in the works as a leader/ender project. I don’t remembr what size I am aiming for, but I do remember I need 17 star blocks. I entered this one into the “modern” category for the local quilt show. Even though it is a modification of a traditional pattern, the large sized squares and the bright colored solid fabric spoke “modern” to me. And the show committee did not change it.

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