I promised myself when I cut back my work schedule from three days a week to one and occasionally two per week that I would get more involved in my quilt guilds challenges. Now by the end of May I am finally completely retiring. So lots of extra time to get involved.
My guild has a family social and a challenge every year the first Tuesday in August. This year the challenge is to make a 16 inch square mini quilt.
Several years ago I made this little wall hanging. It is too small to use in the challenge, but I liked at the idea.
So I pulled some batiks out and stated a new vision.
Larger flower petals. I have increased the pattern size to 200%.
And a nice layout of the pattern.
Once adhered I sewed around all the petals and leaves very close to the edges with closely matching thread colors.
And now for some out lining with 12wt threads on leaves.
And petals. I do need a very small circle of gold fabric in the center of the petals and lots of thread work to make a fuzzy little center. After that some quilting, probably straight lines diagonally in both directions on the off white background. I do have a pretty patterned batiks to use for a small border or maybe a wider binding that will serve as border and binding. Its not complete, but well on its way in plenty of time for the August event.
After getting all my quilt show boutique items complete I finally had time to get back to my Dresden blocks. I've been looking at my first five blocks and got to thinking about how boring 30 of them would be without mixing it up a bit. I decided to try a different size with a larger center to see if that might add some interest to the whole idea.
This was my first one. I still have to get the center sewn down, but have had to order some 12wt thread. I tried a dark pink thread idea, but it just blended in and didn't provide any contrast. So I have order some goldish tan thinking it will provide the accent I want.
As you can see there is a good size difference. Maybe something in between these two in size. I will just have to see how things go as I move along with the different fabric combinations.
In the mean while I put together another one of the larger blocks. It needs to sew down the blade ends with a blue thread; I didn't have anything in my thread stash to match well. A trip to JoAnn's just didn't appeal to me on Sunday afternoon, so it will wait until later today. I will sew the center down with a 12wt blue to match the flowers and blue blades.
Back in December I started a project making star blocks with my Tilda Cottage fabric. I actually got 72 done, but was not sure if I would stop there or make a king size quilt to be used as my summer bed quilt. I ordered Lemon Tree by Tilda, which arrived in mid March and made the decision to make that king size quilt by incorporating this new Tilda line.
Pulling out of my closet these Cottage stars was so fun. I just love them.
These pretty Lemon Tree prints of pink and rose fabrics will really compliment the blocks I have already made.
I really like the pokadots as well.
The oranges are a new color addition too. I can wait to get started on some more star blocks. I do have to order some Moda grunge for the back grounds so I guess I had better get moving on that.
After many weeks, in fact several months, my Southern Charm quilt top is complete. The job now will be to get a back together for it and then get it off to the quilter. I am afraid quilting it will be the real chore. So many seams, and areas that one probably can not quilt over. Fortunately I have a wonderful quilter that I know will turn out a master piece.
This quilt has such a variety of different fabrics. I am happy to say I pulled it all out of my stash. My goal of late is not to purchase fabric unless there is no other choice. I have way too much to start with. It is also what got me hooked on Dresden plates. It is a lot larger than I ever thought it would be when starting out as well.
OK, I my obsessed. These guys grow on you. However I did have an issue this week with one of them.
I cut these blades from a fabric I really love, but was unsure of the stripe placements on them.
I went ahead and put half a plate together and didn't feel any better about the the stipe fabric.
So I changed gears and recut new pink blades to replace the stripes. I still wish I could have made the stripe work, but I just could not get past the stripes placement not being the same on each blade. I did try and it seemed just impossible to manage.
I did soothe my temporary upset and cut out this block. I think I will audition my fabrics before I start sewing these things together in the future.
I also learned a great trick sewing the blades together. I changed my stitch plate to a single hole plate on my machine. I was having problems with the sewing machine sucking the fabric into the large hole plate. That change has improved sewing them a good deal.
And here we are. I am all ready to add more plates to their background pieces. I am on hold for a few days waiting for an order of 12wt thread. I have a large jar of them, but no pink. This last Dresden that gave me so much trouble needs a pink thread to sew the center piece on. I plan to take a break now and get my Southern Charm quilt top sewn together and hopefully get it to the quilter some time this month. And of course more quilt show boutique placemats and runners.