Friday, May 30, 2014

Scrap-A-Palooza! Quilt #5 Finish

I admit, the month of May has been a bit of a blur for me.   I am looking forward to June and hoping things settle down and I can move at a more relaxed pace.  But even working at a hectic pace, I still try and find some time to sew.  It always seems to chase the stress away!
The end of May also means we are finishing up the fifth quilt in the Scrap-A-Palooza scrap series!  My how time flies when you are having fun!  Dare I say I seem to be making headway on my battle with my scraps. Maybe I shouldn't say that too loudly...

Here's a quick review on the previous parts to this quilt.

In Part One, we pulled out scraps and started cutting them into 2.5" squares.

For Part Two, we sewed up some simple blocks. 

And started playing with some layouts.

 Last week in Part Three, we put our blocks up on the design wall and picked a layout.  Then with some straight forward piecing, the top was completed.

And as always, we talked about some possible quilting ideas.

Now I am ready to share my finished quilt.  Didn't it turn out great!  It is not fancy or special but it is very inviting and comfortable. Just what you want a scrappy quilt to be!

I love how the blue prints alternate across the quilt.  And the play of the two different "streak" sizes adds some extra silliness.

I kept the backing simple.  I had two black and white prints in my stash that were mirror images so I sewed in an inset of one of the blue prints from the front to break them up a bit.  Bye, Bye old fabric!

Some tight matchstick quilting in the blue and a swirl in the black/white areas.  This quilt is definitely made to be drug around and loved!

  And now for a few statistics:
Lap Quilt
Size: 56 x 72"
Fabric: Various black and white prints from the scrap bin
Total Pieces: approximately 650 2.5" Squares
Total Blocks: 63 (7 x 9) 8" blocks
Streak Fabric Used: approx 3/4 yard each blue print (3 total)

And I wasn't the only one working on this quilt this month.  Alycia over at Alycia Quilts is working on her final layout.  She is so darn creative!  When the scraps she was working with weren't turning out as hoped, she added some orphan blocks to her design.  Doesn't it look great!  You can read more about it here.

I have already been planning what we are going to be making in June.  It will be simple and quick!  Hope you decide to sew along and share what you make!

Why Scrap-A-Palooza?  Because Quilting is more fun than Housework!
Joanie’s Trendy Quilts
This quilt is one of the NewFOs I had on my 2014 Bloom Project list at Joanie's Trendy Quilts so we can check the May Scrap quilt off the list!.
I will also be linking up with Miss Midge for TGIFF, Richard and Tanya Quilts, Crazy Mom Quilts,  Scrap Basket Sunday, Sew Can She, and Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

FairyFace Designs

If you are sewing along, don't forget to link your Scrap-A-Palooza quilt over at FairyFace Designs for Sarah's Put Your Scraps To Work series.

May Finishes  
And this will be my final entry into A Stitch in Time  

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Orphan Block Potholders – FAL

What do you do with a bunch of orphan blocks that don't have a home? 
I say make them into fun little potholders!

In my continuing quest to get old projects out of my sewing room, I decided to turn these dated orphan blocks into something useful. As each of these blocks are 6", some have extensive piecing to them.  With all that work having gone into them, I just didn't have the heart to toss them out.

So this little pile of blocks and fabric....

...are now these happy little potholders.

And the initial fabric I was hoping to use with these blocks was a tad too small.  So...

...after some digging in my stash, I paired them with this fun woven plaid fabric and soon had another set.

And finally, I also had these four blocks.  You will just have to trust me that they were also made into potholders.  Right after finishing the bindings, a friend snagged them from me before I could get a photo.

I'm just thrilled they found a new home!

I am pretty happy to see these finished up.  Unfortunately, I discovered 8 more blocks today that had fallen behind a shelf.  Ugh!  I guess I will celebrate these finishes and worry about those another day.

If you are interested, here is a link to a previous post where I shared some tricks to making potholders.

Finish Along 2014

And as I had this project as part of my 2nd Quarter Finish Along goals with The Littlest Thistle, I can now say I have met half my goals for this quarter.  Woo Hoo!

How do you use up those old orphan blocks?

Linking up with Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation, Inspire Us Thursdays at The Inspired Wren and the 2014 Finish Along with Katy.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Horizontal Scrappy Quilt Finishes

One of the best things about my Scrap-A-Palooza series (besides sewing up the many fabric bits that litter my sewing room!) is sharing what others are doing with their scraps.  Here are a few more finishes using the Horizontal Bar quilt as inspiration but making adjustments to make it their own!

Here is a beautiful quilt a friend of mine made.  She had recently made other quilts using Tula Pink and  Laura Gunn fabrics.  With all the left over fabric from those quilts and a few other scraps, she made this lovely quilt.  The soft blue solid she used for the sashing worked beautifully!

Diann over at Little Penguin Quilts made this adorable baby quilt.  I love how she made the last bar a combination of all the previous colors and widened the sashing bars for more negative space.  You will want to check out her post to view other pictures and see her quilting.  So much fun!

This quilt called Flowering Dogwood was made by Sandra over at Musings of a Menopausal Melon.  Alternating the purple and green bars of scraps between the soft gray sashing made a wonderfully inviting quilt!  Once again, you will want to check out her post to see how she quilted it.

Hope these inspire you to sew up some of your own scraps.  You can find even more inspiration in the Scrap-A-Palooza Gallery page.  Thanks for sewing along!!

I plan on sharing this post with Let's Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts and Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation.  Hope you hop on over and see what others have been up to!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Mixing it up!

Lots of paper piecing to share today!

First, I finished up the 5th block of the Sew Kitschy series of paper piecing with Kristy over at Quiet Play.  My grandmother had one of these older mixer so I adore this block.  While her mixer was white,  I chose a fun swirling print for mine.

I have also been making progress on my English Paper Pieced stars.  Next I am going to make an orange star with a blue center to see if I want to sprinkle a few of them throughout the quilt top.  I think I am also going to use a slightly darker gray background in a few of the blocks just to add a bit of contrast.  What do you think?

...and I might have started another paper pieced project. (sigh...)  I somehow allowed myself to download this great Basketweave Star pattern by The ADD Crafter just to see what one tiny block would look like in jewel toned scraps.  I am now hooked and am working on more stars.  My plan is to make the gradation in each star different.

Hopefully these three projects will keep me occupied for a bit.  
I really don't need any more long term projects!

Linking up with Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times, Stitch by Stitch for Anything Goes Monday and Freemotion by the River for Linky Tuesday!!
Sew Kitschy

And of course I am linking up with Kristy at Quiet Play.  If you think my mixer is cute, you should see some of the others!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Hexagon Quilt Finish - Q2 FAL

One of my big goals for the year was to focus on completing some of the MANY half done projects I have stuffed in every nook and cranny in my sewing room.  I did really well the first quarter of the year but have really fallen short since.

So I am super happy to share this finish.  This quilt top has been done for at least 7 years...but as usual, I never found the time to quilt it.  It was one of the items I included on my Second Quarter Finish-A-Long list with Katy at The Littlest Thistle.  So far it is the only item I have finished this quarter but it is one more off the list...right?

The backing was purchased eons ago and is a bold orange and brown stripe.  I kept the hexagon shape on the edge of the quilt which always makes sewing on the binding a bit more challenging.

For the quilting, I kept it simple and quilted in a big flower shape in each hexagon.  I haven't decided if I am going to keep this one or put it up for sale in my Etsy shop.  I am getting a bit over-run with quilts.  They seem to be stacked up everywhere right now!

Finishing this quilt brings the number of old quilt tops to be quilted down to only 6 (I started the year with 12.).  Hopefully by the end of the year, I will have worked through them all!

(Thanks Katy at The Littlest Thistle for keeping me focused on these older projects!)

Linking up with Finish it up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts, Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Can I get a Whoop Whoop Friday, TGIFF, Fabric Frenzy Friday at Forth Worth Fabric Studio, Link a Finish Friday at Richard and Tonya Quilts, The Littlest Thistle and Show it off Saturday at Sew Can She.

Joanie’s Trendy QuiltsFinish Along 2014May Finishes

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Scrap-A-Palooza! Quilt #5 Part Three

With so much to do outside as well as inside this time of year, I am finding I am not getting into my sewing room as much as I would like.  Happily, I am usually able to find at least 15 minutes a day so progress continues to be made on sewing up those scraps!

We left off last week sewing together the blocks needed for this quilt.  I shared two possible blocks formats and even revealed some potential layouts.

Now it's time to get these blocks onto the design wall and come up with a final layout.

The layout of the blocks is fairly simple.  Depending on the colors you use and the blocks you choose, you can easily create different effects and make the final design your own.

To use up some older blue fabrics found in my stash, I decided to incorporate three different fabrics for my "streak" colors.  I just alternated them across the quilt.

You can see my streaks are different widths.  I acheived this simply by using a combination of the two block configurations.

Note:  The more variation you put in the quilt (blocks, colors and "streak" fabrics), the more difficult the layout becomes.  I relied on my design wall heavily when sewing up my blocks to ensure I made the correct configuration.

To help visually in laying out this quilt, it might be beneficial to build your blocks by laying out the "streak" first and then sewing the pieced part of the block onto each strip.  

Until you get going on the layout, it can get a bit confusing!

Once you get all the blocks on the design wall, you just need to sew up the rows.  On my quilt, the blocks were so busy, worrying about my points always matching up perfectly wasn't really necessary.

So the blocks go together really quickly....Love!

With all the piecing on the edges of this quilt, a quick tip to keep your seams from coming undone is to stay stitch along the edges of the quilt.  I do this on all of my quilts that don't have a border capturing these seams.

And finally, an outdoor shot of the finished quilt top.  While some of my fabric choices really blend in with the black and white fabrics, I still like how this quilt turned out.  Now to go dig in my stash for some fabrics for the back. 

This quilt has a real casual feel to it.  I can't wait to get it quilted up!

And speaking of quilting, due to the layout of the blocks, this would be a great quilt to slap on that walking foot and quilt long diagonal lines.  The piecing will help keep your lines straight - simply use the points on the squares as a guide.

Or, use the seams as a guide to quilt some serpentine lines and create a fun pattern on the back of the quilt.

I hope you try something slightly outside your comfort zone when you quilt up your scrap quilts.  They are perfect to practice on!

Here's an overview of the important stuff to do before the next step!

  • Decide on a layout and finish up your blocks
  • Sew up the top
  • Dig in that stash for a backing (it is in there - just keep looking!)
  • Try a new quilting pattern - something out of your comfort zone.

And remember, you can check out all of the previous quilts made in the Scrap-A-Palooza series by checking out the gallery tab. Not only are the steps to each part linked up but I have also shared quilts made by others so you can find lots of inspiration to sew up those scraps.

It always amazes me how far scraps go in making a quilt.  I must have really had this storage bin crammed full because even after making this quilt.....

...I still had this many squares left after I finished the top! 
I'll meet you here next week with my finished quilt!

I will be sharing this with My Quilt Infatuation, Sew Fresh Quilts, Freshly Pieced, i have to say, and Sew Much Ado.  Check them all out for more sewing inspirations!

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