Sunday, September 28, 2014

Gardens of a King, My Mom's African quilts, My quilt 81 and Lozagons

I continue to test the pattern for Missie Carpenter of Traditional Primitives. Her quilt pattern is called Gardens of a King and it is inspired by the King George III Coverlet. Here's a partial picture of Missie's quilt.

The pieces are small but once you get the hang of Missie's technique for making these amazing blocks it is so much fun! I'm using up so many little scraps which makes me very happy! There are sixteen patterns and the instructions call for two blocks made from each pattern. Here is one of my blocks! I've not yet cut out the second block because I'm so eager to try out the other blocks!

Now it is time for another couple of pictures from the 2014 Yorkshire Rose Quilters' Guild Quilt Show, mine and my Mom's!

This is my Mom (Anne H) with a Montage of African Quilts which were shown at the Yorkshire Rose Quilt Show in September 2014. The banners on the right and left were inspired by a Pippa Moore pattern but Mom personalized them to make them uniquely her own. The quilt in the third column, second from the top was inspired by a quilt made by Allison Wilbur. Allison's quilt was made for Quilt for Change.

I was finally able to get a picture of my quilt 81 - The Giant Monstrosity when it was hung at the quilt show. It does lay flat however we were asked to attach split sleeves to our quilts and this results in a bit of a hump in the middle of the top edge of the quilt.

I will be writing a pattern for making this quilt and it will be available for free on my blog in the near future. It looks complicated but I think you'll be surprised at how easy it is to construct. I did do a great deal of applique in the dark border but if you had a lovely big print it would be a good place to use it if applique isn't your thing!

Yesterday I got together with some friends so while we chatted and munched away on delectable treats I managed to get another Lozagons block stitched. Only 29 hexagon blocks to go!

Until I post again, happy sewing!
Karen H

Friday, September 26, 2014

A New Tutorial - How I mount a wall quilt

A friend had one of my Mom's African quilts mounted on a frame and it looked great so I thought I would try it out myself. This was my first attempt. This quilt measures 9" by 12".

I wrote about how I did this on September 8th.  I wrote "We purchased an artist canvas that was stretched over a frame. The quilt top was ttimmed so that the width and length were each 1/2" larger than the canvas (this extra 1/2" is for the seam allowance. I attached 1 1/2" strip of black fabric to all four sides of the quilt and the the sewing started/stopped 1/4" from the corners; each strip was about 1/2" long than the length/width of the quilt. I pulled the strips to the back and used a staple gun to staple them in place but left the corners loose. At the corners I turned the edges under and with black thread stitched them together. The last step was to staple the corners".

Today I am framing a second wall hanging and will modify the method just a little. I cut the black strips 2" wide and this worked much better and I prepared  the black strips before I stitched them to the quilt. Here is a step-by-step tutorial of how I mounted the quilt on an artist's canvas.

Supply List:
Artist canvas stretched over a wood frame
2" strips of black fabric
Thumb tacks
Black thread
Staple gun
Black permanent marker (optional)

Step 1: Measure the width and length of the canvas. While the packaging may show a particular size it may be slightly off.

Step 2: Trim your wall hanging so that it is a scant 1/2" wider and 1/2" longer than the frame. I cut exactly 1/2" larger and the result is a little bit of the black stretching strips show from front of the finished quilt. If you measure a scant 1/2" (just a few threads less than 1/2") then the black will be less visible. As an alternative you can use strips that match the fabric of the quilt and it won't be a problem.

Step 3: Cut two strips that are the same length as the top and two that are the same length as the sides. My Mom's quilt with the seam allowances measure 9 1/2" x 12 1/2" so I cut two strips at 9 1/2" and two strips at 12 1/2".  Turn under the ends of each strip 1/4" and stitch with black thread. Turn under one of the long edges of each strip  1/4" and stitch with black thread.

Step 4: Pin the top and bottom strips to the wall hanging being sure that they are 1/4" away from the edges and stitch them to the quilt being sure to use a 1/4" seam allowance and back stitch at the beginning and end.

Step 5: Pin the side strips to the quilt again making sure that they are 1/4" away from the edges.

I like to place a pin to keep the top and bottom strips out of the way so they don't get caught in the seam. Stitch the strips to the quilt using a 1/4" seam allowance and back stitch at the beginning and the end.

Step 6: Press the strips away from the quilt.

Step 7: Top stitch the strips to the seam allowances in the quilt.

Step 8:  Place the quilt on the canvas and pull the strips to the back. I like to use tacks to hold the strips in place. I pin all the way around being sure to pull the strips taught.

I turn the frame over to make sure that I am happy with the look of the quilt from the front. I make any necessary adjustments and them repin on the back with the tacks.

Step 9: I use a staple gun to staple the black strips to the frame on all four sides but I only staple the strips at the corner on the side strips. I leave the top and bottom strips free at the corners.

Step 10: I hand stitch the corners. To do this I thread a needle with black thread. I bring my thread up at the orange circle and use a little whip stitch or a ladder stitch to pull the two sides together to close the opening. (Note: I took the following picture of the corner before I had stapled the back; I wanted to show the corner. Once the strips are pulled to the back and stapled the tacks are removed)

I pull the black strip taught and place a staple as indicated by the orange circle and then continue stitching the strip as indicated by the orange arrow.  I make a small knot and bury the thread.

Step 11: This step is optional but it gives a nice finish. I use a permanent black marker and colour the staples so that they blend with the black fabric.

Here is the finished product! 

A bit of the black shows from the front but had I trimmed my quilt top so that is was just slightly less than 1/2" larger than the frame this would have been eliminated. Another thing I didn't do but should have done is to clip the corners to reduce the bulk so that the corners were a little sharper. I learn as I go! It isn't perfect but I do like the way these quilts look when then are mounted and hung on the wall!

I hope you enjoyed this little how-to. Until I post again, happy sewing!
Karen H

Thursday, September 25, 2014

More quilt show pictures

Today I'm sewing with friends so I don't have time for a long post but instead will share more pictures of quilts from the Yorkshire Rose Quilters' Guild Show!

"English Country Garden"

"Flowers in Abundance"

"In My Garden" - This quilt was made by my Mom, Anne H.

"William Morris Blue Bonekickers"

"Birds and Urns"  This quilt was made by my Mom, Anne H

"On The Beach"

"Japanese Taupe Half Square Triangle"

"Shibori Indigo Blue Shadow Quilt"

"Dear Jane"

"Triple Expresso Skip"
"Sunset Lattice"


"Modern Wonky Log Cabin"

"Tango's Quilt"

"Sakura Festival"

Until I post again, I hope you've been inspired to create!
Karen H

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Pattern Testing, Lozagons and a Beautiful Pen

I continue to work on the pattern testing for Missie of Traditional Primitives. I'll share pictures when she gives me the okay! I you like English paper piecing and the Dear Jane quilt then you'll be interested in Missie's quilt pattern! It isn't a large quilt - I think it will finish at about 65" which is a nice manageable size!

Last night I stitched together a block for my Lozagons quilt. You can read about the original quilt here.  The turquoise you see will act as the background fabric. I've made hexagon rosettes and I'll stitch one rosette at each spot where there is a turquoise hexagon on the block.

The result will be that the block will appear to have spokes as you can see in the picture of the original quilt below.

That's one block down and thirty to go! You can see my box of "noodles" which are the hexagons stitched into rounds. They are waiting to be turned into larger pieces!

My brother turns wood on a lathe and has made some really lovely seam rippers which he sold at the Quilt Show. He made these for Mom and me for Christmas. The seam ripper part comes out and gets tucked inside the wood handle when not in use.

Well I love the woods me uses and so he me made me a lovely pen made of buckeye burl. A burl is a round growth on a tree. The grain is very different from the trunk and it is full of eyes and swirls.

Here's a close-up of the burl in the seam ripper above. Pretty, isn't it? You can see more pictures of his seam rippers here.

And here is the pen he made for me. I love the colour of the wood, creamy gold and slate grey!

There were some small voids in the burl so he filled them with turquoise inlay. It is a tiny little detail and the kind of thing that makes the pens a little extra special! I love my pen!

Tomorrow I'll share more pictures from the quilt show! Until then happy sewing.
Karen H

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Treasures and more quilt show quilts

We had some fabulous vendors at the Yorkshire Rose Quilters' Guild quilt show on the weekend and I was able to pick up some lovely fabrics to add to the stash. So what did I get? Grab a cuppa and sit back for a fabric show and then some more pictures from the quilt show!

I bought this range of lovely prints from Flare Fabrics.

I would like to make another quilt like my "Owl at Night" and I thought they would make a terrific background!

Owl at Night by Karen H 2012

I bought a bunch of fat quarters from Nicole at Log Cabin Yardage. Some of these will be backgrounds, some will be fussy cut and some of them are just nice so I bought them!

These fat quarters came from Quilt Junction. I've got a project in mind and will use these fabrics but it will be for later!

Not really exciting but absolutely necessary threads from Superior. I love dealing with Anita at Cotton Mill Threadworks.

These yummy fabrics came from Border Creek Station. Sherry designs and sells patterns that are perfect for those of you who love Civil War style quilts. I'll be using these fabrics to make the blocks for Missie Carpenter's pattern that I am testing!

Picton Fabric World tempted me with these lovelies! They will go in an upcoming quilt!

Fridays Off is a great shop that carries modern fabrics. I managed to pick up a couple of fat quarters that aren't quite in my colour palette or aesthetic but I'll fin a quilt for them!

Hyggeligt Fabric carries an interesting range of fabrics including Oakshots, Liberty, Shweshwe and Kaffe. She had a great sale on solids (who doesn't need solids?) so I picked up a few for my stash!

Sew Little Time had some great fabrics on sale so you know what happened! I bought even MORE fabric. Many of these are perfect for fussy cuts!

Sylvia is a member of my Guild and she has opened her own online quilt shop, Country Clothesline. She has lovely fresh modern fabrics that have a vintage feel! She also sells original, hand-made, pretty throw quilts and pillowcases! She was at the quilt show and I drooled over her fabrics. I'm sure you will too!

My Guild has a Members' Boutique where we can sell our wares. Look at what I got! On the left is a fabulous pincushion and on the right is a zakka style sewing kit!

I carry a piece of paper with various sizes of hexagons cut out so I can test fabric for fussy cutting when I'm at a show or a quilt shop! Oh the possibilities in this fabric!

Right - time to refill your cup and sit back and enjoy a few more quilts from the show! As I slowly go through and post the pictures I am amazed at the talent within my Guild. Visitors to our show are asked to pick their favourite quilt and I heard so many say that they couldn't choose because there were so many outstanding quilts! I agree with them wholeheartedly!

"Glorious Flowers"

"It's About Time"

"Diamonds Are Forever"

"A Garden For Grandma"

"Elegant Baskets"


"Cream of the Crop"

"Happy Times on Easy Street"

"Everlasting Gratitude"

"Log Cabin"

I hope you enjoyed these quilts and that you are inspired to create; I am! I've got more to share in the coming days as well as my tutorial on framing an art quilt but for now I've got to get back to pattern testing so until I post again, happy sewing!
Karen H