February 23, 2020

Two Quick Baby Quilts

I recently finished two baby quilts in record time (for me, a notoriously slow quilter). I have a number of quilts in progress that I've been working on for a year or more, so it's satisfying to be able to start and finish something on a smaller scale in about a month.

The first one was a request from a friend who lives in Ireland. She asked for a gender-neutral baby quilt in soft colors that she could give to a friend, and she wanted it to include fabric with teddy bears or rocking horses if possible. I pulled out a couple of charm packs from my stash that I wasn't particularly attached to (I think I received them as a gift) and removed the most-feminine prints. After coming up empty at all my usual online quilt shops, I turned to Spoonflower to look for teddy bears or rocking horses that would work with the charm squares. Luckily, there was one print by French artist Helene of Le Vent & La Discorde that fit pretty well with my color scheme, and I was able to order a fat quarter of it during a sale.

The pattern is called Jane's Ladder by Allison Jensen of Woodberry Way -- it's available for free from Moda Bake Shop here. It's a twist on the traditional Jacob's Ladder design and is very easy to put together. I'm not sure what manufacturer or color the pale green background fabric is -- I bought a bag of scraps at Crimson Tate Modern Quilter the last time I was in Indianapolis, and there was a surprising number of these green charms tucked into the stack. Turns out there were enough to use as the background of this baby quilt. The backing and binding is Michael Miller Cotton Couture in Glass. I did the free motion quilting (my favorite go-to quilting design because it's very forgiving) on my Juki TL2200QVP Mini.

My second fast baby quilt is bolder but again uses a colored background fabric instead of the usual white/ivory/gray. It's one of my goals this year to use more colored backgrounds, and baby quilts are a low-pressure way to try it out. This one will be donated to my local chapter of Project Linus to be chosen by a child in need of some comfort.

This pattern is Sparkle from Allison Harris' book Growing Up Modern. The print fabrics were all collected from a destash by one of my local quilt guild friends. I grabbed them because they all coordinated well and I knew they'd make a good donation quilt for a child. The background fabric is Michael Miller Cotton Couture in Marine.

I quilted this one in straight lines with varied spacing, eyeing my lines and trying to keep them pretty straight without using a guide. It's not perfect, but it crinkled up nicely after washing and drying, and that hides a lot. All in all, I'm happy with how it turned out and with the fact that I was able to use fabric on hand.

February 2, 2020

Spring Thaw Quilt

One of the first activities my quilt guild (Knoxville Modern Quilt Guild) does every year is set quilting/sewing/creative goals. We pull them out at our holiday party in December to see how well we did and how much we accomplished. One of my goals this year is to blog at least once a month. I missed January -- great start! -- but I've decided to just double up in February to make up for it. I have a bunch of finished quilts and other projects that I haven't shared here, so I should have enough content to make it through the rest of the year. Even if a lot of people don't see these posts, I like having the record of what I've made.

Every year, I set a goal of making more quilts and things from the books and magazines I've collected. This pattern, called Spring Thaw, was designed by Jodi Nelson and appears in the March/April 2015 issue of Quilty magazine.

I started this quilt in 2018, but years before, I won a fat quarter bundle of Sweetwater "Noteworthy" fabric from an online fabric shop. It turns out that 42 fat quarters go a loooooong way, and this is the second pretty large quilt I've made using that bundle. AND I still have some fabric left that could become yet another quilt. Here's the first one, made using a quilt-as-you-go method and donated to Project Linus for a teen in need:

I started out making a twin-size quilt like the one in the pattern, but when it was on my design wall and the bottom rows were cascading down onto the floor, I started to wonder why I was making it so large. So I removed some rows and columns and it finished around 51 x 64. I found the rose-colored backing fabric on the clearance shelves of a local quilt shop, and the longarm quilting was done by local quilter Pat Pike. Since I didn't have a plan for this quilt -- it wasn't made for anyone in particular or for me to keep -- I decided to see how aqua quilting thread turned out. I like it a lot -- it's playful and a good fit for the overall design.

I started this back in 2018 and finished it in 2019 -- feels great to finally have it done! Now it just needs a home... Quilt for sale! Quilt for sale!


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