Saturday, October 24, 2009

Pot Holders

I've been experimenting with different blocks, and making them into pot holders to get experience with the quilting, framing and binding techniques. Found some material (looks like batting, but is especially for heat resistance) that you include along with batting to make these useable as hot pads.

Here's my first one. I was running low on scraps, so I only did a single layer on the binding, and just did lapped corners. This block is called card trick:

It actually looks "neater" if you rotate it 45 degrees, but I can't get my photo software to do that for me ... if I figure it out, I'll add another picture here!

The next one didn't come out so well. I didn't intend to use the blue initially. I was going to use the same bright red as in the middle, for all the little triangles. But I mis-cut my red pieces, and didn't have enough to re do it So, I decided on the blue. There is some blue in the light-colored background fabric, so it's "OK", but not my favorite combination of colors. I messed up the settings on my machine when I quilted it, so that didn't come out so well either. But, I do like the pattern on the back. This one does have a double layered, miter-corned binding:

Now on to my favorite. This is a block made from 4 smaller blocks. They are all disappearing 9-squares. I really like the secondary color combination of orange, purple and green. I found some batik fabric at a store up in Fancy Gap, and used it for a border and for the back. This one has binding with mitered corners, but only one layer of fabric

Friday, October 16, 2009

First projects

Here's the 1st block I did, a 5x5 pattern.  It's now hanging on the fridge. 

Had lots of fabric left, so did this woven pattern, using the half/seam technique I read about in a book.  Putting the trim around the edge was the challenge here.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Starting up ...

Wanted to be able to participate in the quilter's festival, so had to learn how to create a blog! Sorry there's not much else here yet ...

I started quilting a couple months ago. My first project was a 5-square block design I found on the web. It came out great, but I quickly realized that following someone else's design was not that interesting for me. So I decided to create my own.

I came up with a 9-square kaleidoscope design that I felt needed some really bright colors. Off to the local quilt shop, where I found the perfect fabric. A local artist had hand-dyed pieces in really nice colors. She sold packages of 20 6x9 squares, each a different color, as well as 1/4 yd pieces. 

So, I put the 9x9 design together, and was really pleased with it, except for the bulk of some of the intersections. I couldn't figure out a way to press them to get them all to lock together nicely.

Then the question was, what next? I have been wanting to try quilt-as-you-go, so I made a top and bottom panel, using a row of "diamonds" in each one, and a couple of side panels. After machine quilting all the sections, another lesson was learned. Your quilting design can really change the size of your blocks!

The large 9x9 was 19.25 inches when I started, and 18.5 after quilting. The top and bottom panels were 19.25 when I started, but 19 when I finished. So I had to trim quarter inch off each end of the panels. I lost the nice points on the end diamonds, but oh well!

The process of joining the sections went really well. Then I tried putting the binding on totally by machine, based on a video I found on you-Tube. That was a challenge. I think I need a better machine for that.

Anyway, I love the final quilt. I used a nice soft yellow flannel for the backing, thinking that the quilt might go to the next new baby in the family, but I don't know that I'll be able to give it up!