Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Immediate Gratification

I have made great progress on Crumb Patch.  Two out of four of the border sides are done.  After that, I need to work a little more in the middle and then I am done!  I will have well over 10 hour into it by then and thankfully do not have any folds or tucks in the back.  I can't wait for the final pictures!

Today, I needed a little instant gratification.  This is my dog, Angus.  He is a 2 year old Shetland Sheepdog or Sheltie.

His sister, Shine, looks and acts just like him.  I am good friends with his breeders and wanted to make them (two of them) each a dog mat to take with them to shows.  This is not a mat made for heavy use.  It is more suited to take to demos or dog shows.  Here is one of them.

I made her name (Shine) to look like a Sun!  You can see the thread better in person that distinguishes the letters.  It measures about 27 x 40 or so.  Everything was from my stash.  I even pieced a few strips of batting together to get that out of my stash.

Closeup of the quilting
Here I just did an all over swirl pattern after echoing around the sun.  The picture is strange in that it looks like there is a big tuck there but that is just the seam.  I took it at a weird angle I guess.  I used a Superior Threads variegated purple to quilt.

Here is the back.  I had some twill fabric from making a mei tai a few years ago and used it up!  I figured it was heavy duty and would put up with being thrown on the ground.  I hope it withstands some abuse!

Have any of you made any pet items?

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Quilting, Quilting, Quilting and wishing I were Sleeping, Sleeping, Sleeping

I have my sewing machine set up at my work station-er-dining room table and have been working on it in the small bits of time I have.  I really should have marked my lines but I decided to do free hand.  Most of it looks good but I have some wonky stuff in there.  For some, quilting a quilt is a natural talent.  I see some beautiful stuff that comes out of a domestic machine.  For me, the skill will be hard earned.  I see each piece as a time to learn and to improve and thus have to accept that my vision will not always appear on my quilts!  I love them still though and I will DEFINITELY keep practicing!

Here are some shots.

Below, for the most part, you can see how I am quilting it.  I am making an arc in each of the points and squares.  Same goes for the 9 patches.  After that is done, I will be adding some lines in the white areas as well.  The borders will have arcs and feathers.

Friday, May 27, 2011

My first string quilt

I didnt start the Crumb Patch quilt yesterday.  It was storming really bad so I didnt even want to plug in my precious Viking.  So today I am going to share with you a string project I started just before my youngest son was born.  It took me about 7 months to machine piece and hand quilt.  I think there are about 600 triangles in it so there is well over 1000 pieces.  It is foundation pieced using muslin and uses wool batting.  The quilt is fairly lightly hand quilted (using a grey cotton verigated thread)with a zigzag and then with small stars.  I wanted the tied quilt feeling too so I finished it off by tying it with a neat multicolored 100% cotton yarn.  This quilt is about a twin.  I can't find a picture of the back though.  I usually free piece my quilt backs using larger scrap pieces.  I will have to make a blog post at some point just about that!

I named it Under the Stars.  After some washings, it has become so soft.  I love laying on it.  Right now, it is in my youngest son's room. 

For those of you who have made or like to make scrap quilts, what is your favorite scrappy quilt you have made?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Ain't no sandwich better than a quilty sandwich!

Beautiful day here in Pennsylvania!!  With all this rain recently, a rainless day is well appreciated!  I just finished pinning Crumb Patch and what a pain that was!  I just kept getting wrinkle after wrinkle on the back.  Grrrrr.  I unpinned, fixed it, and repinned.  It will be ready to go after Thursday.  I can't miss the finale of American Idol.  I really need to learn not to watch the preseason stuff.  I just keep watching then.  If I dont watch an episode I could care less what happens!  Oh well.

Anyway, here is some eye candy!  I finished pinning Crumb Patch and may have it done around Memorial Day some time, and I have 5 out of 7 rows completed of the string quilt.  For Crumb Patch, I used Warm and White batting.  I really am starting to like that for machine quilting.  The other batting I like to use is wool batting.  It really has a nice loft and is breathable too.  The Pineapple Blossom quilt shown earlier was quilted with wool batting.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Crumb patch top complete!

Here she is!  I finished her last night, but the lighting was so bad I waited until this morning to take a picture!  I LOVE it!  This is one of my favorites.  I am pleased that I sewed it well (still won't take pictures of the back of the quilt top though....lots of hidden stuff, lol).  I also had time to sew the back together.  I don't have a large stash, but I found some purple and green plaid fabrics and threw them together.  I think they all were sold as remnants.  One of them was a civil war fabric so I made sure to save some of that and tuck it away for my next hexagon project.

The total pieces for this quilt top is 1137!  The top cost me about $18.00 to make.  I bought the white background fabric and the blue border fabric.  5 yards for 18.00 is a good deal to me!!  I love a good stashbuster, don't you?!?

Here is the finished Crumb Patch Quilt!

The big question here is how do I quilt this thing!?!?!?  I am new to the actual quilting part and have a hard time many times figuring out how to compliment the quilt with quilting.  Suggestions welcome!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Quilt Assembly and Borders.

I have been busy making my flying geese.  For this quilt you will need 138.  The flying geese for the crumb patch quilt will measure 2.5" x 4.5." It is important that you measure carefully and adjust the width of your inner border so your flying geese fit properly.  A good explanation  for why you have to measure so carefully can be found here at Quiltville

For starters, you actually have to make them first, right?  I made mine with a specialty ruler (Companion Angle, and EZ angle rulers).  You can make yours using a specialty ruler (also shown via the quiltville link) or there are other methods of making flying geese well explained by Connecting Threads

I assembled my flying geese making sure the colors were well distributed.

After I assembled my borders, I ironed them out and measured them to see exactly how big my inner borders had to be.  For the cornerstones, I made four four-patches.
It is assembly time!

One more step to go!  BTW, the inner border used 2.5" strips.  The side portion had to be a little bit narrower so the flying geese would fit properly.  Oh, and see the 4 patch cornerstone on the lower right corner?  Fixed that!  It was pointing the wrong way!

Next I am going to add a 4" finished blue border around the outside!

Block Assembly for Crumb Patch

Assembly for Crumb Patch is pretty simple.

9 Patch Block (you will need 32)

For each block you will need:
4            2.5" x 4.5" bricks
4            2.5" colored blocks

8 pointed star block (there are 31)

For each block you will need:
4             2.5" neutral blocks
8             2.5" half square triangles

There are a number of ways to make half square triangles.  P.S. I Quilt has a treat tutorial here.  This is how I made mine.  I have to admit I expected some wonkiness in mine so I used 3" squares and trimmed all down.  Yes, all 248 HSTs.  Oh well...I know my quilty weaknesses and I wanted nice HSTs!

Here is the layout.

Friday, May 20, 2011

String Quilt Project

While I am working on finishing my flying geese, I thought I might share with you another quilt I have in progress.

Recently I found JulieKQuilts while searching through the blog world.  I saw her header quilt (the picture on the top of the screen) and LOVED it!  It is an Evelyn Sloppy pattern found in this book.  I needed something that would use up some of my strings and little strips.  They were overflowing!  Here are some pictures from my progress so far.

I started with the string blocks using old phone book pages as foundations.  I am making mine larger so I made 56 string blocks for a 7 x 8 layout.  I also used strip piecing methods for the sashing strips.  I made the strips longer so I could cut a bit off the ends to use as the center strip of the 9 patches.

Here are the pieces of the 9 patches all cut up.

Here is part of the first row of blocks.  I have since completed one row and a few blocks of the second row.

Soon I will have all of the flying geese blocks done.  I will be making 144.  Also, I ordered a nice blue fabric from connecting threads for the borders of Crumb Patch.  That has been shipped and I am excited to recieve it.  I will soon be posting block assembly information for Crumb Patch and will be adding it to the tutorial.  The list of posts about Crumb Patch can be found on the right side of your screen.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Crumb Patch Quilt requirements

How did I plan this quilt?  On a post it note!  I want to share with you some of the fabric requirements for Crumb Patch.

Neutral:  I used a Kona solid called Snow.  Thus far, I have used 3 yards and will use a small amount more for my flying geese.  I would buy 4 yards or use up your scrappy neutrals.  If you take scrappy neutrals, you will be using 2.5" strips mostly.  For the half square triangles, I used 2 7/8" strips.

For the center, I have NO idea what I used!  It came from my scrap pile!!!  Here are the stats though:

The quilt center measures about 56 x 72 (again prior to borders).  It is in a 7 x 9 layout.  Finished block sizes are 8"

9 Patch Blocks:  (32 total)

128   2.5" colored squares
128   2.5" x 4.5" bricks of your neutral fabric
32     4.5" crumb blocks

8 Pointed star blocks:  31 total

124  2 7/8" colored squares
124  2 7/8 neutral squares        (These squares will make 248 HSTs)
124  2.5" neutral squares

Inner and Outer blue border:
You will need approximately 2 yards.
Inner border consists of 2.5" WOF strips (I used 8 strips)
Outer border used 8 4.5" WOF strips
I also will use close to 3/4yd for binding.

Flying geese:
You will need to make about 138 flying geese.  Size is 2.5" x 4.5" unfinished.
Happy Quilting!

Crumb Block Tutorial!

I wanted to give some of you who have not yet made crumb blocks a nice, picture heavy tutorial!  It is sooo easy and does not require foundations.  All it takes is the ability to sew in a straight line!

One other note I will make before starting the tutorial is that crumb blocks aren't meant to be huge.  They get really tedious to sew any larger than 5" finished.  Good sizes are 3", 4", and 5" finished.  Mine are 4" finished.

First, I put out a pile of my crumbs.  What are crumbs?  They are the little bits and pieces left from trimming that can't be used for anything else.  They are the bits left from bindings and applique too!

I took two pieces out.

Next stop is sewing them together.  They had straight edges so I just lined them up.

Press open.

Next it is time to add another piece.  The seams do not line up, but that is okay.  I just sewed against the pink piece and then trimmed off the excess.  There is waste in crumb sewing, but this is the end of the line anyway as far as fabric is concerned!

You can see in this picture where I would have trimmed off the extra stuff.

This crumb block isnt quite big enough yet.  I dont have a piece long enough to go across the block as I have it, so I then picked two more pieces.  I found a piece left over from applique. Here is where I point out again that the important thing is sewing in a straight line.  You can just trim off the stuff that hangs over when you are done.

Here is the completed, untrimmed block.  The block here is 4.5" unfinished. 

I lay out my square over the unfinished crumb block and trim.

And here I go!  One crumb block.  In order for this to go fast, I have my ironing board situated right next to my sewing machine.  I don't even have to get up!  If this is not possible for you, then work on a few crumb blocks at once.  Sew some pieces together, trim any extra stuff off as needed, iron, then repeat until your blocks are bigger than what you need.

Here is another.

A picture after it is trimmed.  See that piece I cut off to the right of the block?  You can use that to start the next block!

Happy quilting!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Flying Geese!

The center is assembled and ironed and ready for borders.  I guess I have to start on them, don't I!  I am starting by digging through my 2.5" strips to get the centers for my flying geese border.

I am using the Companion Ruler to make quick work of the flying geese!  The upper right hand corner?  Those are my crumbs from making the flying geese.  Gotta feed the pile, right?

I suppose you can learn a lot from looking at a quilter's work space.  Me?  I am frugal!  The bucket in the upper middle is an old baby formula sample.  I dumped the contents and turned it into a scrap bucket.  The container the pins are in?  Came from a pack of drywall screws that was all used up.  Also, I LOVE my gypsy gripper!  Keeps that darn ruler from sliding on me!

Happy Quilting!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Grandmother's Flower Garden

While I work on piecing the top of my "Crumb Patch" quilt, I thought I would share with you one of the other projects I am working on.  I really wanted to try a hand pieced quilt and was reading about GFG quilts on various blogs.  I was hooked!  I started the quilt in July 2010 and worked on it regularly.  Of course, I wanted a scrappy feel.

I started by going through my stash and picking medium tones.  After I paired what I had, I bought a few fat quarters to even things out.  Most of this quilt came from stash.  I bought the stepping stone neutral and the outer purple.  I used 1.5" hexagons and cut them all outmyself.  Would I do that again?  I would like to think not.  It is nearly impossible to keep them perfectly uniform.  When I start the next one (yes there will be a next one!) I will buy the hexagons and save myself hours of work!

This was a picture taken in January 2011.  I have it about 60% hand quilted.  I work on that during my Idol nights.  The quilt is about full sized.

Here is my view behind the quilting.  I borrowed a Hinterburg  frame from a friend.  I didnt like using the hoop.  I couldnt reach anything even after adjusting.  It still is very useful to me if I drape the quilt over the hoop (the weight of the quilt holds itself taut enough for me).

Some closeup pictures of the quilting.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Blocks are Done on "Crumb Patch!"

I have been working on completing my 8 pointed star blocks throughout the day.  In between cooking, painting, mulching, planting, and baking, I would sew a few here and there.  I am so pleased at how this is turning out so far!  My points are pretty straight, my seams are flat, and the blocks appear square.  I became very familiar with the seam ripper!

Here she is!

Now I have to figure out what to do next.  Should I add sashings?  If I did, I am thinking a nice, rich, blue tone.  Other things I am throwing around is a small white border (2" finished) followed by a scrappy, flying geese border.  I think I need to sleep on this one!

Happy Quilting!

Cascading feathers: A you tube tutorial

A nice commenter posted about the feathers I machine quilted into my pineapple quilt.  I wanted to share with you a tutorial I found on the interwebs!

Doesn't she make it look so easy?  Sure, she is using a longarm and not shoving a queen sized quilt into a domestic throat!  It's all good...give it a try!  This quilter is awesome!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Blogger's Quilt Festival Spring 2011

I suppose what better way to become aquainted with blogging by joining in on the Bloggers Quilt Festival.  This is hosted by Amy's Creative Side.  I am excited to see all of the quilts!

The quilt I am sharing with you today was finished last month.  It is from Bonnie Hunter's Pineapple Blossom pattern, finished with a piano key border.  I made this one big at 90" square.

What inspired me?  I was collecting fabrics to make a scrappy bargello.  After I cut the strips and put a block together, I hated it.  I had too many darks and not enough neutrals.  I noticed the Pineapple Blossom pattern on Bonnie Hunter's website and loved it!  It took me a year before I started, but it was totally worth the wait.  The added benefit was that I already had 2" strips ready to go!  This is also the first large quilt I machine quilted on my new Viking Sapphire 875.  Working with a large throat space made it so easy.

Here are some more closeups.

 My pineapple quilt was quilted with a cascading feather design.  It was really difficult given that I had only done feathers once before, but overall I was really happy with how it turned out.

Here is the back of the Pineapple Quilt.  I tend to pick larger leftover pieces and then freepiece it into a quilt back.  I rarely use wide backs or large bits of yardage.  It keeps space open in my stash for new things!

Star block!

Here is the block I will alternate with the 9 patch to make my "Crumb Patch" quilt.  I have all of my star points done (holy HST batman!!) and am ready to assemble!

I have no ideas yet for borders.  I will decide Once I have my blocks completed and assembled into the quilt center.  I have a tendency to start things without real plans!  I like to plan as I go!

First Post!

Hello All!

Welcome to Scraps-a-Plenty!  I unfortunately started the blog on the day it went down and lost everything (thankfully I didnt do much)!  So here I am starting over.

I wanted to start by sharing with you a project I am working on.  I have about 4 things going in various stages, so I have some catching up to do! 

First of all, I LOOOOOVE scrap quilting.  I love trying to fit scrappy designs into traditional patterns.  I started out with a gallon sized bag of crumbs, and am working on fitting that into a quilt I will aptly name "Crumb Patch."  I will show pics of my progress and would love to work up a tutorial if there is interest.  My feeling is that there are many crumb quilts out there but I dont often see the crumb blocks used in a larger design.

Here is the first block.  This is an 8" finished 9 patch using 4" finished crumb blocks in the center.
I made these during my Mother's day trip to my LQS.  They have a "Sip n Sew" day every Wednesday and I had many hours of unlimited sewing!  I love my hubby's willingness to support my habit!

More posts to come!