Monday, 23 March 2015

Economy Blocks

Greetings on this Monday from cold and snowy Alberta Canada. It feels more like we are approaching Christmas than Easter. I even took a two hour nap on the couch this afternoon. That had more to do with staying up until 1:00 a.m. doing some English Paper Piecing rather than the weather though.

Today I would like to show you an economy block quilt I made for my Etsy shop. I bought these dinosaur fabrics with the intention of sewing some baby boy quilts for my shop because I almost always make baby girl quilts. Baby boys need quilts too! I know, because my first child is a boy and it's sometimes hard to find a good selection of things for those sweet little guys.

Economy block dinosaur quilt pieced and quilted by Anita LaHay of Daydreams of Quilts.
 There is a fun Facebook group that I am a member of called Quilt Block Boot Camp. It is run by Ros of the blog Sew Delicious. She is an Australian blogger. I really enjoy the Australian bloggers! :) Anyway, every week she posts a link to a free quilt block tutorial for all of us to try.

We have had eight weeks so far but I have only sewn the economy block. I do want to sew them all soon though. Ros has them all grouped in a document file too so that is handy for finding them quickly if you're like me and have so many things going on that you can't keep up with the group.

I quilted leaves for the dinos to munch on all over the quilt top.

I had a fat quarter of this border print which I put along the top of the quilt.

This is the back all crinkly after it went through the washer with a bit of Ivory baby soap and then the dryer.

This quilt is for sale here if you're in the market for such an item. :)
I love these blocks. This was my first time sewing them and they are a bit tricky but not too hard. They are especially great for showcasing large prints. I want to make two larger quilts for my home. One out of Aneela Hoey's "Little Apples" line and one out of Heather Ross' "Briar Rose" line. I have two lovely fat quarter bundles that have been sitting waiting for me to decide what to sew with them and I think Economy Blocks are the way to go! There will probably be enough for some more baby quilts too.

Check out "Quilt Block Boot Camp" and request to join if you would like to sew along and learn some blocks.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Charm Dash Blog Hop - Today is My Day

Hello and welcome to my stop on the Charm Dash Blog Hop happening on Ms. Midge's blog! I am so happy to be able to show you my quilts today that I made with Ms. Midge's pattern called "Charm Dash". This pattern is easy to follow and quick to sew up. I love that I can get a whole collection into a throw quilt without spending a lot of money. A throw size uses one charm pack plus six more charm squares. And then yardage for the background. Solids are less expensive than prints so this is an affordable quilt to make.

Without further ado here is my Charm Dash throw quilt.

Charm Dash quilt. Designed by Ms. Midge pieced and quilted by Anita LaHay of Daydreams of Quilts.
 I used a charm pack of "Ruby" by Bonnie and Camille for Moda. For my six extra squares I used "April Showers" by the same designers. For my borders, binding and backing I ordered "Miss Kate" fabrics by Bonnie & Camille from Country Clothesline here in Canada.

Charm Dash quilt using all Bonnie & Camille fabrics.

Here is the back. This colour of blue is my absolute favourite colour!
 Okay, so here's some tips for you on this pattern. The instructions tell you how to construct the block. Instead of making one block at a time I chain pieced everything I possibly could to make this project quicker. Believe me, I need projects to be quick these days with three kiddos. For example I made all half square triangles (HSTs), trimmed all HSTs and pressed all HSTs. Then I chain pieced all the five inch patterned and white pieces and so on. (Chain piecing is where you just keep sewing your pieces one after another without cutting your threads and then cut them all apart at the end of that step. This saves time and thread.) So basically I completed each step of the block for all 12 block at once. Also, I tried the wrap around border but I didn't really like that so in future I would just sew my borders onto the top and bottom and then onto the sides. That is just my personal preference though.

I am still learning different free motion quilting techniques. This quilt has a lot of nice white space to quilt in. I filled my quilt top with quilting and got lots of great practice!

I have discovered that I like quilting feathers and I am getting pretty good at it so I did feathers in the solid border. You can see that I was pretty much over it with the quilting by the time I got to the red border. I probably shouldn't have done it all in one sitting. There's another tip... break up the quilting into smaller blocks of time instead of trying to quilt the whole quilt at one sitting.

I even went around the corners with my feathers. I was pretty proud of that. :)

This is my favourite block in the whole quilt. I love these fabrics so much!
 The Charm Dash pattern gives you options for different sizes and one of those options is a crib quilt. Here is my Charm Dash crib quilt. I made it with baby boys in mind but I suppose girls can like bugs too. (Not this girl... but you know... maybe some girls like bugs.)

Charm Dash crib quilt pieced and quilted by Anita LaHay of Daydreams of Quilts.
 This quilt is available for sale here in my Etsy shop. That's another thing I love about this pattern... Ms. Midge allows you to sell your quilts that you sew with your pattern. You need to credit her as the designer in your listing. How great is that!? When I start publishing my patterns I will be doing the same. (I won't get up on my soap box about how I think all patterns should be like this.)

I quilted the bug quilt with green heart shaped leaves for the bugs to munch on.

Here are the borders and a closer look at the cute little bugs. (Probably the only bugs I find cute.)

Here is the whole cloth backing and you can get a better idea of my quilting in this shot.

I hope you enjoyed my quilts today. I highly recommend this pattern and I plan to make more quilts with this pattern. If you would like to buy "Charm Dash" is it available on Etsy and Craftsy and is discounted for the duration of the blog hop and Quilt Along. Speaking of the quilt along, you want to check that out if you haven't already because there are fabulous prizes up for grabs! Here is the link again: Charm Along and Blog Hop.
Here are all the other stops on the Blog Hop:
Friday 13th March – Sarah Goer –  Things I Make
Monday 16th March – Linden Vine –  Vinelines Quilting
Wednesday 18th March – Crystal McGann – Raspberry Spool
Friday 20th March – Anita LaHay – Day Dreams Of Quilts
Monday 23rd March – Progress Report – Ms Midge
  Wednesday 25th March – Tsoniki Crazy Bull –  Me Being Crafty
Friday 27th March – Tisha Nagel  –  Quilty Therapy
Monday 30th March – Progress Report – Ms Midge  
Wednesday 1st April – Kathy Gordon –  Kwilty Pleasures
Friday 3rd April – Angie Wilson –  Gnome Angel
Monday 6th April –  Roslyn Russell – Sew Delicious
Wednesday 8th April – Abby Rudakov – Things For Boys
Thursday 9th April – Final Post and Linky open  –
Thank you for vising my blog today! I hope you make a Charm Dash quilt too! :)

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Tic Tac Toe Easter Baby Quilt

I have been quilting up a storm so there will be quite a few blog posts coming up! :) For today I would like to show you my Tic Tac Toe Easter quilt that I made for my baby girl. I am really enjoying being in a Quilt Bee for "The Bee Hive" this year. I am a Swarm Leader for an All-Canadian bee but we there are bees (or Swarms as we are calling them) all around the world. The first block released was the Tic Tac Toe block and our February queen bee chose it for her quilt. I enjoyed sewing it so I decided to sew up a few from my stash and I wound up with a baby quilt.

I had half a yard each of the light yellow (Kona), the duck feathers and the eggs (designed by Martha Negley). As well as a half yard of the Straw binding (Kona again). It turns out that I could make nine 12 inch finished blocks but there was not quite enough yellow for the last two. My friend Lori at Sew Psyched very generously offered to send me a fat quarter from her stash. Thank you again Lori! :) The label on my yellow said Daffodil but as you can see it is not the same yellow. I think the quilt shop mislabelled my yellow and it was actually banana. (That quilt shop has made a few boo-boos with me lately and they are no longer at the top of the favourites list.) Anyway, I think the two yellows adds some depth... don't you?

Here's a closer shot. I quilted feathers on the feathers which you can't really see here and hearts in the Xs.

I had a layer cake of "Storybook" flannels by Moda. The yellow and grey were perfect. I had to add in some blue though to have a big enough backing. Ah well, par for the colour course on this quilt. It's super soft and cozy.

Here you can see the backing with the front of the quilt.
I am very pleased to have sewn this entirely with stash (plus the little gift from Lori). It's a lovely baby quilt just in time for Easter.

If you want to make these blocks the free tutorial is here.

Saturday, 7 March 2015

Charm Dash Blog Hop Coming Up!

Hello! I'm popping in really quickly to say that I am so excited to be a part of Ms. Midge's Charm Dash blog hop this month. My post will be on March 20th. She is giving away two copies of her pattern on her Facebook page right now. So get there right away and enter for a chance to win! Leave a comment on her post.

If you miss the giveaway she has discounted her patterns in her shops. Here are the links:

You can go to either Etsy or Craftsy. This is a really great pattern and I highly recommend it!

Here is my Charm Dash quilt in progress. I still need to add the borders and quilt it. This pattern takes just one Charm Pack plus six more charms. How fantastic! I hope to have another one (or two... it's that quick!) so show you by the time my blog hop stop rolls around. :)

Sunday, 1 March 2015

March Goal for A Lovely Year of Finishes

Hooray! It's March! Spring is around the corner. I finished my quilt top for my Charm Dash quilt which was my February goal however I do not have a completely finished quilt yet. And if I did I couldn't show it yet because it has to wait for the Charm Dash Quilt Along blog hop that's coming later this month. So, sadly another month goes by where I couldn't link up a finish. Maybe March will be my month!

My goal for March is to sew the "Scout" quilt out of Cotton + Steel fabrics. I have been wanting to sew this quilt since 2012! So now is the time! I did my fabric pull yesterday. Here it is:

I cut all the pieces this afternoon so I am fully committed. This is a quilt for me so it is full of my favourite colour. Turquoise! :)

I am linking up with "A Lovely Year of Finishes". (There's a button in the button bar if you want to participate too!)