Island Batik Sneak Peek

I’ve been busy over the weekend, and I made some progress on this month’s Island Batik challenge so I thought I would share.

This month, our challenge is to make log cabin quilts. I’ve had a layer cake of the Alpine Jingle collection sitting around, waiting for the right moment and I decided that this challenge was it.

I’ve cut the pieces for the quilt, and have sewn together one of the blocks. The block is not a log cabin obviously, but a tree, made with paper piecing. I’m sure the log cabin blocks will go together well.

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Tell me…have you ever made a log cabin quilt? Was it classic, modern, improv, or something else?

I really appreciate your comments. Please leave an email address so I can thank you personally!

After Quilt Market

Always in Stitches, the quilt store where I work, recently held an After Market event to introduce customers to our new offerings and it was fun!

First, refreshments were served and wish lists were passed out. Then one by one, we were introduced to the latest goodies from Fall Quilt Market. Every once in a while, the presentation was paused while another goodie from Market was given away to a delighted crowd.

So what were some of the trends? Cats seemed to be everywhere—in quilts and in fabric, including an awesome collection from Island Batik called Feline Fine.

Wovens (homespuns) are hot again, and they’ve gotten a fresh look with bright colors and gorgeous coordinates.

Deb Strain is back with a new Bee fabric collection.

Apparel fabrics and Cuddle (Minky) were once again pretty popular. You can’t believe how cute the Funky Friends patterns are in Luxe Cuddle fabric!

After the event, customers were given the chance to purchase products fresh from Market before they hit our sales floor.

Wednesday Wait Loss 93

Welcome to Wednesday Wait Loss. I can’t wait to see what you’ve been working on!

First let me tell you what I've been up to

Since the last time we met, I blogged about a guild retreat I took earlier in the fall. I love quilting with friends! It’s always so much fun and so re-energizing, seeing all the creativity. I highly recommend quilt retreats if you’ve never gone on one. Click here to read all about it.

The Fall into a QAL concluded yesterday and to celebrate I finished my quilt along top and showed it off. Did you quilt along with us? Click here to learn where you can view all the finished quilts.

But the biggest news of the week is that I finished my quilt along top with my new sewing machine!

Yep, after a year of looking and saving I finally made the leap and purchased a Janome 9450. This baby is the workhorse of quilting machines, with two different even-feed feet, three special needle plates, a super large throat space, built-in needle threader, scissor cut, needle up-down, foot up-down, and a large LED light in addition to the undercarriage LEDs to light up my workspace.

I’m just learning about all the features of my new machine, but man I love the scissor cut. The machine stops with the needle down by default and all you have to do is to press a button to cut both the top and bottom threads. The threads are cut and the foot and needle rise up so you can move the quilt. When you want to sew again you press the foot down button and then the Start button or use the foot pedal and you simple go, no bothering with catching and holding the threads under the foot or any of that nonsense it just goes and the thread doesn’t get pulled out of the needle or tangled underneath. How did I ever live without this feature?

I’ll tell you, for edge stitching all those letters on my quilt along top, that scissor cut feature was my best friend! I’m in love!

As I learn more about my machine, I’ll share it. Right now though I can tell you that if you are looking for a new sewing machine for quilting, this is the one!

Well that was my week.

Before we find out what you did this week, let’s take a look at who made this week’s feature.

Let's see who made this week's feature

First up is Kathleen @ Kathleen McMusing, who finished her Fireburst Mystery quilt top. The mystery was hosted by my friend Tish @ Tish in Wonderland and it’s wonderful!

Next is Laura @ Slice of Pi Quilts, who shared Nana’s Star, a quilt made with vintage sheets! You have to read the story on this one, especially her photo shoot location.

Next is Karen @ Tuna Quilts, Travels and Eats, who shared her quilt for the Pick a Pumpkin blog hop. And you simply have to see the photos she shared of a pumpkin fest in Europe. Unbelievable!

Finally, Kathy @ Kathy’s Kwilts and More shared her OMG (one monthly goal), which was to simply sew a few blocks. A modest goal, to be sure. But it may prove almost impossible, as Kathy also revealed that the sewer recently backed up into her basement. Her sewing room was there along with other things. So sewing is all but impossible right now in her crowded upstairs area.

I’m thinking Kathy could use a more than a few hugs right about now. In lieu of that, please visit her blog and leave an encouraging comment. One of the things I like best about Wednesday Wait Loss is that we are a community that likes to share what we’re working on, and to encourage each other, so let’s do that for Kathy.

Congratulations ladies! Here's an I Was Featured badge for your blogs or to simply print out and wear with pride! Thank you for supporting my blog!

Wednesday Wait Loss Featured

Our next special link up is November 21st

Our next special Wednesday Wait Loss is November 21st and we’ll be celebrating Thanksgiving and harvest quilts. Thanksgiving is celebrated here in the states, and to us it is a celebration of food and family, featuring turkeys, corn, bread stuffing, cranberries, pumpkins and other foods harvested in the fall. We also celebrate the American Indian at Thanksgiving, without who’s help the first pioneers would never have made it through those difficult first winters in a new land. Most cultures celebrate harvest time with some kind of festival, and I’d love to hear stories about that as well!

As usual, if you link up a quilt that somehow reminds you of Thanksgiving or harvest time, it’ll count as two chances in my giveaway. Other quilts linked up will count as one chance.

Time to link up!

Now it’s your turn to link up your works in progress and recently completed quilts! Here are some quick reminders about the linky party:

  • This linky is all about encouragement, so please visit a few of the links and leave a comment.

  • If you’re uploading a photo from your phone/computer, leave a comment below that explains your project. And for the rest of us, please reply to a few of these comments leaving words of encouragement for a quick finish.

  • Please link back to my post somewhere in your blog post or use @inquiringquilter and #wedwaitloss to tag me in your Instagram/Flickr post.

  • If you link a photo from Facebook, please mention @InquiringQuilter and my Wednesday Wait Loss.

Linking to several fun quilty linky parties.

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Tell me..what have you been doing this week?

Fall into a QAL Recap

The Fall into a QAL just concluded and I thought I'd recap it a bit. First, thank you so much to everyone who participated! The other designers and I were overwhelmed by your creativity and perseverance. For many of you, the blocks required skills that you'd never used before but you didn’t let that stop you and in the end you created lovely quilts!

Thanks also to my fellow designers. I love the way we work together and I can’t wait for our next quilt along!

The final linkup closed Monday at midnight (specifically, November 12th @ 11:59 PM EST). I hope you were able to enter because our final giveaway was awesome!

If you missed the final quilts you can see them in any of these three places:

Now, about my quilt. The last time you saw my quilt top, it looked like this.

I had sewn the blocks together and added the borders, but I had plans to add lettering to that center panel.

I had selected the fabric I wanted to use, and had a notion of adding something on either side of the lettering, but that was about it at that time.

I used the same approach as last time, typing the phrase, Fall into a QAL into EQ, sizing it to fit my quilt design, and printing out the templates. I tested the letters on the quilt top first to make sure they were the right size, then I traced them onto fusible and fused the back of my gold lettering fabric.

To keep things orderly as I arranged them on the quilt top I used this plastic tray.

I used a ruler above and below to help me keep the letters aligned and spaced evenly.

After fusing the letters, I edge-stitched them using a matching thread. Then I fused to leaves on either side of the letters. I used this wonderful glittery brown fabric. I didn’t want to use a bright fabric because I didn’t want the leaves to take center stage. I edged stitched the leaves after fusing them down.

  • To edge stitch around the letters, I used Aurifil 50 wt. #2132 (Tarnished Gold)

  • To edge stitch around the oak leaves, I used Sulky 40 wt. #1025 (Mine Gold) I love how this color really plays with the metallic threads in the leaf fabric.

Here’s my final quilt top. I’m really pleased with how it came out!

Update: We have a winner!

The winner of our grand prize is Merri Lynn Voss. Congratulations! Look at what you’ve won!

So when is the next quilt along?

I’m afraid I can’t tell you much right now, except that me and my Partners in Design are moving right along, making decisions about the next quilt along.

I can tell you that we’re changing things up a bit and that you’re really going to like the changes! Oh, and the theme we’ve chosen. <grin> Until the big announcement however, I can’t tell you any more other than hold onto your hats I’m so excited!

Watch for the big announcement here and on social media. Be sure to follow me so you can keep up! You’ll find ways to follow me at the top of the sidebar.

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 I really appreciate your comments. Please leave an email address so I can thank you personally!

I really appreciate your comments. Please leave an email address so I can thank you personally!