Thursday, October 16, 2014

Retreat time

Today, I along with no-blog Mary (from Toronto) will be heading out for our first quilting retreat.  Yep, we are newbies!

We really don't know what to expect.  There have been some interesting emails going back and forth amongst some of the attendees. 

Now, trying to decide what to bring?

For sure, this project is coming along:
It will be so nice to get this project done and since it is fall .... what better project to work on?

There will be apple cores for some handwork time:
Perhaps some adult bibs will get made?  This past week, two have been made (they are shown on the right) and eight more need to get done to meet my annual donation commitment for my day quilting guild.

Those projects should keep me busy and there is enough of a variety that I shouldn't be bored.

Have a great day, eh!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Apple cores - how to?

How do I go about sewing together my apple cores?  It is easy.

The apple cores in this section below were removed and pinned onto a piece of cotton batting.  Smaller sections are just easier to handle.
For me, I like to start in the bottom left hand side.
Below is the start of sewing the pieces together.  The paperclip you see attached to one of the apple cores helps to keep my sewing orientated.  When I see the paperclip, I know that is the very bottom of the section and it is easier to put back in the right order. 
Below is the sewn three-piece section put back in it's original place.  So, which ones will get worked on next?  The ones with the big X on them.
Here are those three cores pinned onto the bottom piece.  See the arrows?  That is the route that my sewing will take me.  I just find that it is easier to work on diagonal rows.  The sewing is more continuous and organized.
How are the pieces assembled?  Looking at the photo below, you can see how my core on the right is slid into place by using all the drawn lines.  Each core (for this diagonal row) will be pinned into place and then I can start sewing.
A simple applique stitch is all that I use.
The meeting of this corner is perfect.  Sometimes my core has to be repinned as I sew along.
As soon as possible, some of the paper templates are removed.  Only remove the ones that are surrounded by another core that still has it's paper template attached.
This post really should have been started at the beginning.  How did I start my apple core project?  Find a pattern and adjust the size of the apple core to the size that you want to make.  My pattern came from EQ7 and Block Base.  That was the start.

I made my own paper templates.  They are easy to make and only scrap paper is used.
Here are four paper templates ready to be used.  Don't use more than four sheets of scrap paper at a time.
Pin the paper template to the back of your fabric.  Use three pins as shown below.  
Trim the fabric all around the template leaving a good 1/4" seam allowance. 
Start folding the fabric over the paper template and baste in place.  You don't have to snip your fabric to fold over nicely.  The curve is gentle and the fabric will fold without much fuss.
Once your get half way on the curve, remove your pin that is on the back and repin the last half of the curve and continue basting.

This is what the back looks like of one of my apple cores:
The drawn lines that you see on all my apple cores just helps me keep everything in its' proper place and lined up correctly.   Using a light box, my template is placed on top of the fabric and after lining up the template to the paper piece on the back of the apple core, I draw a line using Crayola Washable Fine Markers. 
My paper templates are reused and are pressed with an iron to make them crisp again; but as soon as they lose the crisp feel to them, they are tossed and new ones are made.

My method is not fast .... but it works for me.  So, now you know how to put together an apple core quilt.  Sue Daley has a different method of doing apple cores.  Check out her video.  Whatever method, do try making a few apple cores.  You will be glad you did.  For years, I had put off doing an apple core quilt because I thought it was hard.  Oh well, I'm doing it now.

Have a great day!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Something different

Something totally different for me.

This type of pattern is not my usual style ... but what the heck ... why not try it out.  Our day guild is making this pattern and I had a bin full of blue fabric scraps.

Gumballs from McCall's Quilting, April 2008.

Guess what?  Before I knew it, one border got sewn on and then the outer borders.  Bonus ..... this top didn't sit on the shelf at all waiting for borders.  That is not like me at all.  What is going on????
Since I'm on a roll, I really should get this top marked up for machine quilting and just get it done!

Top size:  63-1/4" x 87-1/2"  

Have a great day!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Apple cores got basted

After doing a marathon session of basting apple cores, another section (from the bright pink piece on the left side down to the bottom) is ready to be sewn together.

Oh, happy, happy, happy!
Have a great day!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Next section .....

...... of my apple core top. 

You can see the start of my next section .... see the arrow on the left side?  Things are moving along quite nicely.  This top will be a nice lap quilt once the borders go on.  Once this top is well under way, I can then think about the split apple core project.  My fingers are itching to start that one.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Fall Equinox

Another top and just in time for fall.  It will be hung on the wall and will be perfect once my bin of pumpkins come out of storage.  Now that Fall is officially here, it is time to swap out the summer quilts and decorate with fall quilts.

I was so stumped with the borders for this top, but my friend Debra came to the rescue.
Why Fall Equinox?  The name of the striped fabric is called Equinox.  So now you know where the name evolved from.
My top count is now 18. 

I will have to find another UFO that needs borders .... there are probably 6 ... at least!

Have a great day!    

Sunday, September 21, 2014

More borders and more borders and more borders.

When Debra drove me back home from Toronto after attending this quilt show, I gave her a show and tell of all my tops.  It has been a while since she saw some of them.

As each top was pinned onto my design wall, we discussed quilting ideas and she came up with a couple that I quite liked.  It really does help to have a second pair of eyes to see things differently.

Then, I asked her opinion on a problem top.  I was stumped on borders.  The daisy fabric (on the right side) is pretty, but it wasn't really working for me.
Debra to the rescue!   We started pulling and auditioning fabrics and viola, the perfect one was found.  You will be seeing this completed top on another post.

There were two more tops that need an additional border on them.

This one (I'm not totally convinced yet):
 and this one (this one definitely needs an additional border to finish it off):
As each top was taken down from my design wall, the top and backing were folded onto an empty bolt.
 The daisy fabric has found a home ... it will be the backing for this quilt.
Instead of hanging in a closet, my tops are neatly stored on a shelf behind my design wall.  
 Have a great day!