Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Happy Valentine's Day, My Deer!

Okay, so I admit I'm not the best gift-giver. I struggle to find clever and thoughtful gifts for Eric. How do I know what kind of hunting-, pilot-, or veterinary-gear are cool and useful!? If anyone has any suggestions, I'm all ears!

For now, though, in honor of Valentine's Day, he's getting a gift from the heart. I don't know if he'll really enjoy it, but I sure enjoyed making it!

This was a printed quilt top from Pattern Jam. I purchased the "large throw" size (50"x63"), for $59 USD, which (if I'm JUST thinking of it as "fabric") seems pretty expensive. But if I think about it as a "quilt top" - one that has a really cool faux-applique pattern that I didn't have to cut or piece???? Well - what a deal! What can I say? I'm a quilter. I don't really even like piecing anymore!

I did kinda try to use my quilting choices to make it look like it was really appliqued and pieced, and I don't think the average person would notice at all. Stitched in the ditch around each deer head. Also free-handed an echo around the inside of each head. Then used a variety of fillers in each of the 12 squares. This was fun and energizing for me to work on. A real breath of fresh air.

My quilting is all free-motion, hand-guided on an APQS longarm quilting machine.

Paisley filler in background.

Cross-hatching in left square. Orange peel in right square. Used existing grids in the fabric, instead of taking the time to mark with pen.

Woodgrain in background.

Diagonal lines with serpentine between every other one.

Parallel lines in background, using existing pattern lines in the fabric, rather than marking.

Pearls (pebbles) on a string in background.

I had to mark a grid with water-soluble pen in this background, and then used serpentine pattern in every other square.

My "deer" Valentines!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Donna's Trellis Garden quilt

This beautiful piece was from a new client of mine, Donna. She purchased this quilt kit from Craftsy - a platform I've used LOTS over the years for online crafting classes, patterns, and kits. It's a real WEALTH of knowledge for the modern crafter!

Donna mentioned that she likes feathers, so I used them throughout this quilt. Meandering feathers in the outer border - which you can't even see on that beautiful fabric. Lots of color and value variation in the busy print, so quilting doesn't show up much.

I also used feather arches in the triangular areas adjacent to the thin, seafoam green inner border. And one-sided feathers in the on-point squares. Ribbon candy in the cream inner border. Continuous curve (aka: orange peal) in the red chains.

This quilt was a breeze to work on. I actually went a little more detailed than our original discussion, because, honestly, the quilt just led me there. Still, I sailed through it, thanks to a lot of freely moving motifs, just a little bit of ruler work, and a tiny amount of stitch-in-the-ditch.

All my quilting is free-motion, hand-guided on an APQS longarm quilting machine.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Winter Fun!

This adorable applique piece is the class example for a series on embroidery in the hoop that is currently being taught at Rumpled Quiltskins in Okotoks, AB. Here's the class description: Appliqué in the hoop is quick and allows so much texture and life to your embroidery. As "snow" is our national climate, we celebrate our 150th birthday with a salute to someone we know better than our founding fathers - the Snowman!

I had so much fun quilting this piece. It was like an ongoing game of "I-Spy". Each time I advanced to the next row of blocks, I got to play peek-a-boo with some more snowmen! It was such a hoot the whole time!

The blocks called for a lot of outlining, with few opportunities for embellishment. I wanted to quilt around all the major applique elements, so that they really popped and had a lot of definition.

The border gave me some room to have fun. I cut out a cardboard snowflake template, traced around it with water-soluble pen, and used contrasting thread to quilt the snowflake shapes. I regret that it doesn't show up better - I wish I would have used TWO threads in my needle. Although, maybe it's for the best. There's already a lot going on in this quilt, no need to confuse things. Decisions, decisions. Sigh....

I filled around the snowflakes with some wild "McTavishing" - which I think evoked winter wind and flurries. 

My quilting is all free-motion, hand-guided on a longarm quilting machine.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Cozy Winter Warmth

Thanks to my client, Carol Ann, for letting me work on this cozy and cuddly quilt. The top and backing are both flannel, so it will be a wonderful blankie to snuggle under on the cold winter evenings. I can almost hear the fire crackling now!

I used a simple edge-to-edge design of berries and holly leaves, in medium-low density, so the quilt didn't get too stiff. All my quilting is free-motion, hand-guided on a longarm quilting machine.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Lavonne's Fish Quilt

This lap quilt is sure to be a perfect birthday gift for Lavonne's brother. It's a fishing quilt, with a backing of beer! It needed a burly-surly-manly edge-to-edge quilting motif, like woodgrain. What a fun (and warm!) gift!

My quilting is all free-motion, hand-guided on a longarm quilting machine.