Special Techniques

Island Batik August Challenge: Quilt as You Go

The challenge this month for Island Batik Ambassadors was to make a quilt as you go project.

Quilt As You Go.jpg

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but I knew I wanted to use the Pressed Petals collection by Island Batik.

As soon as I found this adorable pattern by Pink Sand Beach Designs, I knew I had my quilt as you go project. The pattern is called the Riviera Handbag.

As you can see from the cover of the pattern, it’s not designed to be quilted. That didn’t mean however that I couldn’t replace the outside lower pocket panel (the blue paisley fabric) with a quilted panel. Easy peasy, if you use quilt as you go!

First, I cut some muslin and batting a little bit larger than the outside lower pocket panel listed in the pattern. The pattern calls for two pieces of fabric cut 9” x 17” (one for the front pocket, and one for the back) so I cut 2 pieces of muslin and batting 10” x 18”. Cutting my backing and batting larger than specified allowed me to trim my pocket panel to the exact size needed after it was quilted. (Quilting often causes your fabric to shrink up a bit so I wanted to allow for that.)

After selecting the Pressed Petal strips I wanted to use, I layered the muslin and batting and placed two 2-1/2” strips right sides facing along the batting's right edge.

I sewed along the left edge of the strips to quilt them. I know, sewing along the left edge of your sewing machine foot is different, but I chose to do that so I could have the bulk of the QAYG piece to my left and not under the tiny opening of my machine. About halfway through quilting the panel, I switched things around and sewed along the right edge of my sewing machine foot.

Next, I pressed the top strip to the left.

Then I laid another strip on top of the left strip (RST) and sewed along the left edge as before. I kept this up until I had quilted both of the lower pocket pieces. And that my friends is quilt as you go!

When they were done I cut my quilted panels to the size called for in the pattern, then simply followed the steps to make my bag. This pattern was clearly written, with photos for every step so even if you’ve never made a handbag before, you would have no trouble making this! One warning however—there are 30 steps. Yeah I know. 30!

Just go slow and look at the photos to double check yourself after each step and you'll be just fine.

I’m planning on using the bag to carry my tablet and my bee bag (which contains graph paper, a notebook, and pencil for designing quilts on the go). The outside of the Riviera bag has two pockets—one in the front and one in the back. You sew across the top edge (that tiny orange strip on my bag) of the lower pocket panel to create the pocket. This means the pocket is open all the way across the panel. I decided I wanted the pocket to be the same size as the pocket opening, so I sewed some side seams.

Riveria Bag 3.jpg

Inside, there are more pockets. You can make these whatever size you need.

And look! I even put in a zipper! If you want to read about my previous zipper adventures, click here, here or here.

I really needed this bag. As soon as it was finished, I put my tablet and bee bag in it. So glad I got to use my Island Batiks to make it!

Riveria Bag
16-1/2 wide (at the top), 9-1/2" tall, 4" deep
Pink Sand Beach Designs
Fabrics: Island Batik Pressed Petals collection
Batting: Warm and White
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt #2610 Light Blue Grey
Quilting Thread: Aurifil 50wt #2150 Pumpkin and #2740 Dark Cobalt
Pieced and quilted by: Jennifer Fulton

If you haven’t already, be sure to link up to my Wednesday Wait Loss. I’m having a giveaway!

Also, be sure to come back on Tuesday for the next two blocks in the I Wish You a Merry Quilt Along. Yep, there will be two block patterns this time and one of them is mine! Hopefully that's an incentive to come back. <grin>

And be sure to post your version of Block 2 by midnight EST August 28th. To learn more about the quilt along, including where to get the block patterns and what you might win, click here.

Blog signature 3.jpg

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Tell me...have you ever made a bag? What do you use it for?

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!

This Quilt Finish Threw Me a Curve

Well, it’s July 3rd and I’ve finally gotten my June Island Batik quilt done! This month’s challenge was curves.

Some of you saw my sneak peek on Wednesday, at my Wednesday Wait Loss. It’s not too late to link up a photo of a work in progress….just click here. WWL is a fun group of quilters that help each other get things done, so if you would like some encouragement on a project, I encourage you to link up!

I’m calling this quilt Sunrise Temple. When designing this mini, I started with a Sweet Nectar charm pack. I printed out some templates from EQ to fit the 5” squares, then manually cut out my pieces. After sewing the drunkard’s path blocks, I trimmed them to 4”.

I needed a background that complimented the colors in Sweet Nectar and after scanning the fabrics I’d been sent from Island Batik, I decided on the Marbled Blackberry blender. I really, really love it—especially the way that reddish violet complements the colors in Sweet Nectar.

Marbled Blackberry

Marbled Blackberry

Sweet Nectar

After making my blocks, I started playing with layouts. I tried quite a few before I decided on the one I used in Sunrise Temple. Here are just two of the many layouts I tried. Notice in my final layout how I placed the warm colors to the left and the cooler ones to the right. To me, that resembles a sunrise—how the sky changes from warm spikes of color to a bright yellow-blue sky when the sun rises.

Final Layout

If I’d had more of the Marbled Blackberry, I probably would have used it as the binding as well. But it’s July and we’re getting to the end of fabrics I was sent in February so I need to be strategic in my fabric choices. I had lots of 2-1/2” Pressed Petals strips left over from my Slice of Orange Peel quilt so I looked there for a binding and found #121612875. I really love how it complements the colors in the quilt.

From the Pressed Petals collection

I quilted the purple areas with Aurifil 50 wt #2545 Medium Purple. I didn’t have a purple thread that exactly matched the background, but I think it works well and really warms up the purple. The Sweet Nectars areas were quilted with Aurifil 50 wt #2132 Tarnished Gold. I tried out a lot of thread colors but quickly decided that yellow worked the best. I have a lot of different yellows so choosing the exact one that complimented but didn’t draw too much attention took some time, but I love my final choice.

I used mostly utilized edge-of-foot quilting to quilt this piece because it’s easy and you don’t need to mark anything. I quilted circles in the center, and followed the edges of the curves in the outer ring. For the inner ring and the corners, I quilted star points. I traced some paper templates for the points so I could mark them uniformly. I think the star points really reflect the name of the quilt—Sunrise Temple.

Here's a look at the finished quilt, along with the quilt details.

Sunrise Temple
14-1/2” x 14-1/2”
Original Design
Island Batik collection, Sweet Nectar
The background is Marbled Blackberry BE24-A2 from the Blenders collection
The binding is from Pressed Petals
The backing is from Vineyard
Batting: Warm and White
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2605 Grey
Quilting Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2132 Tarnished Gold and #2545 Medium Purple
Pieced and quilted by: Jennifer Fulton

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Tell me…what is your most memorable sunrise/sunset?

Wednesday Wait Loss 8

Hi and welcome to Wednesday Wait Loss! Last week I finished my mini quilt for my friend Kate. You might be interested to know that I finished her bee block too, and I’ll be posting about that later this week. My priority right now though is my Island Batik challenge for March.

Yep, March is Mini Madness month for the Island Batik Ambassadors, and as usual I’m getting things done last minute. The good news is that I have a new quilt top! Woot!

The bad news for me is that it isn’t quilted yet. <sad face>

But God willing and the creek don’t rise, I’ll get that done too before the end of the month so I can do a special post all about my March Mini Madness quilt.

The pattern is my own, and its foundation pieced. That was the other part of the Island Batik challenge for this month—to not only make a mini, but to also use paper piecing—either English paper piecing or foundation paper piecing. I choose paper piecing because I like it. I know. Call me crazy!

Didn’t it turn out great? I’m thinking this one will be well worth the wait. The fabrics, by the way, come from Island Batik’s Pressed Petals collection which is in stores now. I'm simply in love!

Be sure to come back later in the week for my finish post (fingers crossed).

Moving on, it's time now for our weekly feature! Last week Alice linked up two projects—Dizzy, a quilt made entirely of HSTs, and Raspberry Parfait, from my Berry Cross quilt along. I believe that anyone who makes a quilt entirely of tiny HSTs deserves a huge round of applause! Congratulations Alice!

Not to be outdone by the other quilt along participants, Alice decided to set her Berry Cross quilt on-point. I love how different this simple change makes to my pattern. And the colors! Yum. Let’s encourage Alice to get that binding done so we can see the full beauty of this quilt! Go Alice!

A few weeks ago we had voting and for some silly reason the votes didn’t show up until later. Or I missed them somehow. Or I'm just plain stupid. <wink> So let’s try the voting thing again. Remember that you’ve got six votes of love and encouragement you can spread around after the linky closes.

Wednesday Wait Loss

Time to link up your WIPs and recent finishes! The linky will be open until Friday, March 31st at midnight EST. Voting will open after the linky closes, and will remain open until Tuesday, April 4th at midnight.

If you need help linking up, click here for detailed steps or simply send the photo to me in an email with the link you want to use.

Here are some quick reminders:

  • This linky is all about encouraging finishes, so please visit a few of the links and leave a comment.
  • Some participants are uploading photos and not linking to a block, Instagram, or Flickr. If that’s you, 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.

Remember: The linky will be open until Friday, March 31st at midnight EST. Voting will be open from Friday at midnight until Tuesday at midnight. Please join us and let’s finish those WIPs together!

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Tell me something about your project! What are you working on this week?

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!

My Antiquing Adventure

I love visiting my cousin Marti and relaxing at her cabin in the countryside. It’s not only fun to catch up with my favorite cousin and my sisters, but we often go antiquing! I love looking at antiques, especially vintage fabrics, quilts, and embroideries.

During a recent trip. I saw this beautiful quilt, artfully displayed. It was in very rough shape but the hand quilting on it was delightful!

I spotted this cute wooden box decorated with honeybees, and a beautiful collection of antique pincushions.

I thought this was a clever way to recycle a coverlet.

My sisters and I had a blast digging through the antique embroideries and selecting our favorites. Antiquing made for a really enjoyable afternoon.

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Tell me…do you ever go antiquing? What treasures have you found?

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!