Monday, March 2, 2015

Getting Carried Away

I love piecing quilt blocks.  I never cut out a whole quilt at once.  I like to cut three or four blocks, piece them together, press them, and cut some more.  Since I'm almost always making scrap quilts, I love to see how the fabrics work together.  I love the little jolt of happy I get when I press it and it's even better than I hoped.
As you can see, I've been getting carried away.  This is my closet, filled with tops needing to be quilted.  And this is only the recent stuff.  The rest of the tops are in the basement, in bins.  I have run out of hangers big enough for the tops.
There are several sensible things I could do to solve this problem.  I could get some more hangers.  There are probably some in my husband's side of our closet.  (After all, he's retired, what does he need with neat unwrinkled clothes?)  Or I could send some of these quilts, especially the large ones, out to be quilted by a longarmer.  Or I could buckle down and get some quilting done.
Buckling down is the mature answer.  Plus it's cheap.  I already have everything I need to quilt at least a few of these.
This one will be pretty easy to quilt.  It's a small quilt, made from a pattern on the Quilts for Kids web site.
It's called I Spy.  Here's a link to their pattern page, which currently has 4 quilts.  If you click on the I Spy quilt, a pdf will come up that you can print.  As you probably know, Quilts for Kids is a charity that gives quilts to kids in hospitals.
Quilts for Kids Patterns
The pattern calls for 1.5 in. cut strips (the ones that look like sashing), which are usually either black or white.  I don't like black for kids' quilts very much, so I chose a green polka dot.  You also need 6 strips 3.5 in. cut of 6 different novelty prints.  I used some that more or less went with the green.  You can use one-way prints in this pattern, like the frogs or the Eric Carle children.  It really helps to lay this one out on the floor to separate the prints.  The directions call for strip piecing, but it would be fun to make this with lots of rectangles of different novelty fabrics.  They would be cut 3.5 in. x 5.5 in.  The blocks finish at 5 in., and there are 42 of them (7 rows of 6). 
As with all the Quilts for Kids patterns, the directions are very clear.  If you follow the directions, you won't need to piece either the borders or the backing.
I got carried away again!  When I pulled the fabrics for the green quilt, I also pulled some for a yellow/pink one.  This time I used 3 one way prints--purses, cupcakes, and giraffes.
I still have to add the borders.  Oh, AND QUILT IT.
Honestly, I like quilting.  Really.  Piecing just seems to lure me away.
I got this one pinned up last night, and will work on it this afternoon.  It was made by Joan D., a fellow quilt guild member, and it even has her signature piano keys border.  It's for charity.

When I quilt these smaller quilts, I like to use a package of Queen Sized Warm and Natural batting.  It will usually make 4 quilts.  It's nice and flat, easy to quilt, and I can quilt a little further apart than with 100% cotton.  When it's on sale (which is a lot of the time) I usually buy a couple packages.  I ran out of the Soft Touch batting, and I don't know if I can get any more. 
More novelty prints!  I made this top a couple of weeks ago.  Just because.  That's why I made it, and that's actually the name of it.
The pattern came from this magazine. It's made from squares and rectangles (no triangles).  There are lots of other good patterns in here, too.
I had to show this detail today.  Happy Dr. Seuss' birthday!  The wacky world of Dr. Seuss has done a lot to make kids (and adults!) love books and reading.
I get a little carried away when it comes to things I love, like books and quilts.  So every once in while I have to calm things down a little--take some books to the library for the book sale.  Or finish a few quilts.  Putting in the last stitches is very rewarding.
And then I'll be ready to get carried away again.
Have a wonderful quilty week, whatever you do. 

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