Monday, February 27, 2017

Somebunny's been quilting

 Hoppy Monday quilting friends!  Let's jump in with both feet by having a little before and after show.  So this is before....

...and so is this one.

And after a little marking, ruler work and free motion... 

And then after that one...

Lets see one more.  I could show you more but I'll save it for when the quilt is finished.  We'll just hop to information about the quilt pattern.  The first question I always get is: 
"Where can I get this pattern?" 
Answer:  it's a free pattern by TheCraftyQuilter that I changed to suit my needs.  You can find the one block  wall hanging by clicking here

Julies bunny pattern is absolutely perfect.  So perfect that I thought it was a good idea to make a larger quilt.  Well when doing the quilty math I realized some changes were needed in the pattern to fit my fabric stash.  Sadly the flowers had to go in order to reduce the size background fabric. A simplified tail for an easier applique shape.
Next question 
"What line of fabric did you use?"
  The fabric used is a mishmash of several different fabrics.  Most of the florals are old WalMart fabrics, about 12 yrs old.  The pink gingham is a thrift store baby bed skirt.  The pink stripe is a crib sheet. The solids in the quilt are Joann  and Hancock's fabrics.  Throw some designer fabrics into the mix from Moda and Riley Blake and you have a super cute quilt that breaks some quilting rules.

Lets not forget the backing.  It's two blue pieces(different colors) of poly cotton blend.  Next question: 
What type of batting do you use to get the puffy look?
 Answer: WalMart low loft Poly batting.  Sorry girls it's true.  You can't beat the price, and it looks good.  I've tried every batting out there and I always go back to Poly. 

See you when it's finished!

~ Lea Anne ~

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Friday, February 24, 2017

Christmas Memories ~ Friday Finish

Hello sweet friends! There's a fabulous Friday finish to share with you today.  This quilt is my own design(sorta).  Since it's a lap quilt it was quick and easy.  A few weeks ago while sharing a sneak peek of the quilt I asked my creative followers to help with a name .  There were so many great suggestions.  Thank you so much for your advice.  Taking all the suggestions and rolling them into one sweet and simple name.  

"Christmas Memories

The truck block is huge measuring 24 x 24.  I'd like to take total credit for the  simple design, but it's an old pattern made new by Jenny Doan of Missouri Star quilt company.  While doing a search for a simple quilt pattern for my applique trucks and trees I saw a picture of the her quilt block.  To be honest I've not watched the video.   When saw a picture of her block I drew it in EQ7, then added my own special touch of applique.  

The video is Sticks and Stones.   The jelly roll and most of the other fabrics used in this quilt were custom cut from our local quilt shop "Coffee Cup Quilting"  

 The 24" truck block is 4 of the Sticks and Stones blocks sewn together to make one large block. Then the applique was added.  

 The scrap end pieces of the jelly roll were used to design the background for Christmas tree section in the middle and the thin inner border.

Whenever possible I like to add fabric from the vintage stash.  The vintage brown gingham (not cotton) added a special cozy feel.

And to keep the cozy feel, a simple custom quilting without quilting it to death.

~ Lea Anne ~
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Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Creative Quilt Displays

 With each passing day spring is getting closer. We've really no reason to complain here in Podunk.  Our winter has been very mild with about 4 inches of snow all season.  The temperatures have been just as mild rarely getting below freezing.  The only thing we've had to endure is mud, gray cloudy days and the lack of happy colors in our landscape.  Unless you consider multiple shades of brown to be happy colors.  In order to beat the winter blahs I try to keep things light and colorful in the studio.  The last couple of weeks have been full of creating.  New curtains, shelves and quilt displays have been just a few of the projects.  Mr. Podunk has even offered to lend a hand by building a mini quilt display cabinet.  Hopefully I can share it with you soon, I'm really anxious to get the studio completely finished and take you on a tour.  But in the meantime how about a sneak peak at a couple quilt displays.  The one below is my favorite.  Maybe it's the quilt that makes this one so adorable.  You can find the pattern for the basket block in my tutorials tab at the top of this blog.

The display is nothing more than a fan folded quilt with a large button and some twine.  Hang it on a nail and TADA you've an adorable quilt display.

The next one is a little more work but still super cute.  

Easy to make with things found in a quilters stash.  Wanna make one?  How about a quicky tutorial?

Things you'll  need.  
1. an embroidery hoop
2. (1)green fq(can use scrap fabric)
3. (1) red fat quarter for the flower(I used yardage so this is an estimate)
4. twine, yard, or thread to attach the button(not pictured)
5. (1) large button(I forgot the button in the picture so I drew one..haha)

You'll need a way to draw a 5 inch and 4.5 inch circle.  A drawing compass would work just fine.  Adjust it to half the size of your circles 2.5" and 2.25".

I used some longarm quilting rulers to draw mine.  On the back of the red fabric  draw (8) 5" circles(petals) for each flower you plan to make.

Cut out your circles.  No need for perfection in the cutting the raw edge will not show or be important in this project.  If your comfortable with rotary cutter it makes the process go much faster.  WARNING  the manufacturer of a rotary cutter would say not to do this but I live life on the wild side.  So use it at your own risk.

 After cutting out your circles press them in half once wrong sides together and set them aside.

1.Next draw a 4.5" circle on a piece of paper.
2. fold the paper in half
3. then fold in half again
4. then fold in half one more time.
You should end up with a little pie shape.

1. Okay quit dreaming of your favorite pie and unfold your circle until you have a half circle.  
2. Using the folded lines as a guide, place a mark 1/4" away from each fold line on both sides of the fold line.
3. put a mark 1/4" away from the bottom edge of each side of the half circle.
4. Place the template on top of your folded circle, lining up the bottom straight edge and mark your fabric with dots at each marking. Repeat for the remaining fabric circles.

1.Starting at the marking in bottom corner bring your needle up through the fabric.      
 2. Continue stitching using the dots as your stitching points.(make sure you leave long tails on either side for pulling.
3. holding both tails, gather the fabric
4. tie the threads towards the bottom of the petal to secure the gather.
5. repeat this for each petal
6.  Using a new strand of thread, string your petals together by going in one side and out the other 
7. Now just pull them all together and tie a knot in the thread tails.

To attach the button
1. stitched the twine through the holes, tie the twine in a knot on the back of the button
2.using a separate piece of twine, go under the twine on the back of the button.
  3. Push the twine tails through the center of your flower, pull taunt
 4. tie the flowers to the embroidery hoop.  

 I forgot to picture the embroidery hoop covering.  It's simple, just wrapping the 1" strips around the hoop. 
1. cut (3 or 4) 1" strips from your fq.  sew them end to end. Press open seams.
2. starting at the screw, glue one end of the 1" strip to the back of the hoop.  
3.  wrap fabric strip around the hoop until you get back to the screw
4. glue the end to the hoop.

One little flower looked so cute I had to make more!

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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Quilts with Heart

Ten years ago today there was a huge snowstorm here in Podunk.  Why is that so memorable for me?  Because my co-worker(now Mr. Podunk) gave me a single red rose after swooping in and saving me from being stuck in the snow.   It's a long and boring story so I'll spare you the details and say the last 10 years have flown by because he's my best friend.  

While we're on the topic of love I thought it would be a good time to share my so called love or valentines quilt projects.  The first one is one made for my mom.  The quilt block was block 2 of the Erin Russeks "My Tweets" free BOM.  The blocks are no longer free but can be purchased here.  The border was designed by me but the idea came from one of Erin's quilts called Miss Belle

Below is "Summer Romance".  Designed and quilted by me.  It was supposed to be an entry in the first Missouri Star Quilts Iron Quilter challenge but due to biting off more than I could chew I missed the deadline.

The hand appliqued center took forever and then the quilting took even longer.

As most of you know I love to work out of my comfort zone.  It's the only way to expand ones knowledge.  The quilt below designed by me is called "Amour De Cerise".  One of the challenges in this quilt was to use valentine themed fabric.  Those of you that follow me on a regular basis know themed fabric is yukky in my book.

This was also a low volume background challenge.  I love how it turned out, even with the themed fabric.  It took one charm pack for the nine patches and fat quarter for the appliqued petals.

With the leftover scraps I made this small table topper.  You can find the free pattern here.

Another mini quilt made from the same scraps.  Not one piece of the charm pack was wasted.

"First Kiss" is one of my favorite designs.  Edited 7-7-17  I'll be writing a pattern and listing it for sale soon. 

"Hello Spring" below really isn't a Valentine quilt but since it has a red heart in the design it could be.  This is another free pattern in the tutorials tab at the top of my blog.

And the last quilt that could be considered a Valentine or Love quilt.  Made for a dear friend using her late husbands shirts.  She made the border blocks, I designed the rest, then quilted it for her.

I'm linking up at QuiltFabrications for a special Valentine Linky Parade.  Hop on over to be inspired and share a little little quilty LOVE.

~ Lea Anne ~

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Monday, February 13, 2017

Spring Fever or Cabin Fever?

It's that time of year again when the wintertime blahs start getting to even the happiest of hearts.  We start longing for the little pops of spring foliage outside our windows.  Some like to call it cabin fever but I prefer Spring Fever just because it sounds a little more positive.   Quilters have their own special way of dealing with winter and the lack of color outside.  Some of my happiest quilt designs have been made during the anticipation of springs arrival.  

When I saw this free pattern "Cabin Fever" designed by Jedi Craft Girl and Gigi's Thimble I knew it was the perfect project to make during my Spring Fever blahs.  It was quick and simple to make due to the easy to follow pattern instructions.  Do you ever feel like some things were just meant to be?  Well that's how I felt with this pattern.  You see the week before finding this pattern series I found the cutest little fat quarter bundle at Walmart.   It was a must have with five of the most darling fat quarters.  These prints are not my usual impulse buy, but it just felt like the right thing to do at the time (as does all fabric purchases haha).

Once at home in my studio with the adorable little bundle the urge came over me to use them right away.   Everyday they would be laid out on the cutting table while standing back doing ever famous quilt stare.  You know, when a quilters eyes glaze over while staring at fabric or quilt blocks for what seems to be hours.  No phone, doorbell, or screaming child can break through this freakish event.  We are in the zone.  I'm pretty sure this happens due to some type of chemical they put in the fabric, possibly pheromones.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it, because there's no way I'm that obsessed with fabric, right?

After breaking free from the chemically induced trance(my bladder has special trance breaking powers) the decision was made....The pattern needed a pattern to show off some of the larger prints.  And then like magic it happened.  The forces that be pulled me to my phone and Instagram.   SHAZZAM!  Amanda and Amber posted the perfect pattern!

The "Cabin Fever" pattern looked perfect for my bundle of (2) pinks (2) green and (1) blue fat quarter.  It was fate!  For the first time in my quilty life a impulsive fabric purchase can be justified.  Yes I really did NEED these! (Well that's what I'll tell Mr. Podunk) 

 Fate also allowed me to find the perfect pink backing hiding in my stash, purchased many years ago at Joann's.  Every square inch of  the pink fabric was used to make the backing.  And there wasn't enough scrap from the fat quarters to make a binding.   So again I tapped into the powers that be and they came to my rescue.  The green polka dot binding fabric was another pull from the stash.  A purchase made last year from my dear friend Beverly.  She sells on ebay.  If you need something she doesn't have in her shop just send her message she might be able to find it hiding in her stock.  When it all comes together so easily with no sneaky trips to the fabric shop for a purchase that would eat into my fabric budget...It's magical!  Anyway that's how my "Spring Fever" version of their "Cabin Fever" pattern came to be.   Wonder what kind of glorious magic will happen during quilting process?!   Maybe another quilt trance will be needed, only the power of time will tell.

The best thing about this whole experience is the pattern was free.  We quilters spend so much money on fabric and quilting tools that when something free comes along it's hard to pass up.  I really can't say enough good things about my experience so far with these two gals and their free patterns.  And I'm looking forward to their free patterns over the next few months.  You can find this pattern "Cabin Fever" by clicking here and scrolling down on her blog.

February's pattern is also a must make cutie. Remember all these free quilt patterns use (5) fat quarters.  Of course you'll need some yardage for the background fabric, backing and binding.  The February "Chains of Love" free pattern can be found here.  And don't forget to follow their blogs so you don't miss out on the new patterns over the next few months.  

Now let me say I'm in no way affiliated with these gals.  Just very happy with the quality of the free patterns that take a lot of effort to test and write.

~ Lea Anne ~
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Friday, February 3, 2017

Friday Finish ~ Vintage Christmas

Finally a finish!  Whoopie!  Christmas has come and gone but this is still going to be displayed on my couch for a couple of weeks because I love the little trucks.   

Growing up we never had a real Christmas tree because mom said they were to much trouble.  Every year I say I'm going to have one of my own.  But then when it comes to actually getting one... I back out.  Call me silly but I just can't see cutting down a tree just so I can put lights on it in my living room.  Maybe this year I'll get a small one that can be replanted after Christmas.

Since this one will be used and displayed the quilting was kept fairly simple.  I can see me cuddled up on the couch with a cup of irish coffee, this quilt and the movie Elf playing. (maybe later in the week..LOL!) 

It's the simple things in life that give us the most pleasure and bring back fond memories.  It took us a few disappointing over stressed years of holidays for all of us to realize, the gifts are forgotten but the family fun is always remembered.

We don't dress up in fancy cloths. As a matter of a fact a couple of years ago the dress code was pajamas's only.   It's the only time of year I buy paper plates and plastic utensils.  And as far as gifts, most of the time they are homemade.  Lotions, candles, soaps and home baked and canned goods are common.  One year my oldest son taught himself to crochet just so he could make everyone a scarf.  I was so proud of him for stepping outside his comfort zone.

Of course we still buy for the little ones, I mean what's Christmas without stepping on a few small toys.

Anyway...back to the quilt.

The pattern is called Vintage Christmas, designed by Erica Ardnt at Confessions of a Homeschooler.  You can purchase the pattern by clicking here.

Erica is a new quilt designer. This was her first published pattern.  She just recently publish another,  Winterberry.  You can purchase it by clicking here.  How cute is this!  Yep I see this one in my near future.

She also has designed a free printable blog planner that can be found here.

This post has been linked up @Confessions of a fabric addict.
Hmmm..alot of quilters confessing today.  Not me...there's nothing to tell...wink, wink.

~  Lea Anne ~
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