Hearts and Flowers Stitched with Love

Jane brought me this to me at our last guild meeting.  Her sister had embroidered the blocks and it was (is) her sister’s first quilt.  We could have done a lot of different quilting on this quilt, but I think perhaps Jane didn’t want to overwhelm her sister with too much fluff (smart thinking!), so we kept it simple.

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You can see that Jane’s sister embroidered cross-stitched hearts along with Lazy Daisy flowers in the blocks.  We figured cross-hatch quilting would pick up the cross-stitching and some fun flowers would pick up the embroidered flowers.  So, Jane opted for quilted flowers in the background of the blocks and cross-hatching in the sashing (strips of different fabric in the areas between the blocks) that also extend out into the borders. She is planning on cutting a curved border – you can see the markings for that in this close-up.  I also repeated the cross-hatching in the center of the embroidered hearts.  Simple, but fun!

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While I was working on this quilt, I made sure I had everything lined up so the quilt would be “square” (actually, a rectangle, but for quilter’s wanting straight edges along all borders… “square”) by using a laser square.  You can see how as I rolled the quilt on the quilt frame, I used the laser square to make sure the quilt is rolled how I would want it to end up square, with the rows and columns all straight.  I used the seams as my guide.  It seams were a little off, I would gently nudge them into straight lines with my fingers.

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If you haven’t borrowed (forever borrowed) the laser square from the toolbox in your garage, put it on your wish list, because I have found it to come in handy for a lot of quilting strategies.

Sunbonnets and a Garden Tea Party

I just finished quilting this beauty for Mary.  She said to do whatever I wanted with it, which, for me, was preserving it as much as possible with historical stitching… but also adding some surprises finishing touches to make it unique for her.  The border is about 3″ wide, so I stuck feathers in there and added traditional quilting to the sashing.  For the most part I added cross-hatching in the background of the blocks, because that is what I think of when I think of Sunbonnet Sue blocks.

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Looking at this while I was working on it was a real delight.  These Sunbonnet Sues were blocks that Mary’s mom had appliqued.  Her mom is gone now, so Mary wanted to preserve them and finished the quilt for her with borders and sashing.

The fabric was like a step back in time.  Look how her mother fussy cut the red fabric so it would look like Sue is holding that shovel.

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And, look at this fabric with the car.  You can also see where I stitched a table with a pot and cup on it – this was part of the garden tea party theme I quilted.  I wish I had taken a picture of the backing fabric (Why do I keep forgetting to do that???), because it has colorful teapots all over it.  Very cool!

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Here’s one with medals.

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I think black and rose has been a good color combination for a long time now.  Here’s one where I added her pouring tea into a cup.

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A little girl can’t have a tea party without a teddy bear.  😉

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Check out this black and coral colored fabric – I thought this one was cool, too!  I mimicked the flowers in the dress fabric and added it to the garden of the tea party.

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I can’t wait to see what Mary does with this one and who she gives it to!  Lucky person, who ever it is!  Maybe… ME???  😉

Blessings Come in All Shapes and Sizes

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This was posted on Facebook, and I have found it to be truer than ever at this point in my life.  Right now I am feeling very blessed.  I love what I do for a living!  I am not making very much money at all, but I am so happy right now.  I get to be creative at my work, and I am surrounded by many creative people.  I believe that we are who our friends are.  If we hang around gang members, they will rub off on us, and we will be like them.  The same thing is true for creative and talented people.  If you surround yourself with creative and talented people, you will become like them.  That is one of the reasons I belong to a particular quilt guild.  There are so many talented quilters who create beautiful, stunning quilts.  And, guess what?  I’m one of the lucky quilters who gets to draw with thread onto their scraps of fabric!

My latest venture has been working on Wilma’s quilt.  I swear, she has a natural talent for putting together fabrics.  You can tell she fussy-cut these pieces for the Dresden Plates.  Don’t they look great?

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Here’s a shot of all the Dresden Plates.

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She was worried about the white backdrop, but, really… what other color could you have used and make the colors pop like they do?

Here’s a shot of the whole thing.  The white backdrop is quilted with cross-hatching, the “petals” of the Dresden Plates are quilted with swirls, the centers of the Dresden Plates are quilted with pebbles, bugs, and cross-hatching, while the green squares are just echoed straight-line stitching around the Dresden Plates.

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Would you believe she only has 3 borders?  The green border was quilted with piano keys.  The red strip has little swirls, and the “other” border that looks like it is many borders has big and small swirls.

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And, if you really want to see the quilting, here are 2 shots of the back.

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I had so much fun quilting this, and Wilma is so forgiving of my mistakes.  I truly feel blessed.  Wait til you see the next one that is on my frame now.  It’s Ibby’s quilt and is a beauty as well!