Quilts

Island Batik Great Outdoors Blog Hop and Giveaway!

Hi and welcome to the my day on the Island Batik Great Outdoors Blog Hop!

Today’s featured Island Batik collection is called Dear William, and I'm in love with it's warm golds, rich purples, and deep greens and blues!

Dear William is part of the Spring collection, currently in quilt stores.

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With the theme "great outdoors" as my muse, I immediately thought of a cabin in the woods. That thought led to Log Cabin and Bear's Paw blocks and well, I soon had a design!

I call my quilt Bear Cabin.

I love how the colors play together. What really fascinates me is the almost floral look of this quilt, despite it's warm rich color palette.

Forgive the photo below. I tried getting some outdoor shots in natural light, and it started raining. Just sprinkling, so I went ahead and took a few quick "glamor" shots. There's a drop of rain on the lens, and a bit of mud on the quilt top because it slid off and fell into a dirt/mud patch. Ugh.

Oh well! It can be washed and I much prefer natural light when I can get it. And soon after getting these shots, the skies opened up and it started really pouring down. So I'm kinda feeling lucky.

Anyway, enjoy the beauty of this photo. Or not. <grin>

I chose these threads to quilt my quilt top.

For quilting, I started with the Bear's Paw blocks. I made a simple loop in the center of the large square, with two half loops on either side. Then I did a half loop on each side of the "claw" part of the HSTs.

I quilted the sashing with a simple curvy line with swirls at both ends. The green center square was quilted with half loops on each side.

For the sashing between the blocks, I quilted a curvy line with curlicues at each end. In the green square in the center of the quilt, I quilted curves along each edge.

I repeated the quilting pattern used in the large Bear's Paw blocks for the mini Bear's Paw blocks in the corners of the quilt. For the borders between these blocks, I quilted a long ribbon down the center of the border with random curls along it's length.

I did something interesting for the Log Cabin blocks. On the blue half, I quilted a series of angled lines from corner to corner of the logs. On the gold side, I quilted a curly version of "feathers".

Here are the quilt details:

"Bear Cabin"
30" x 30"
Fabrics: Island Batik Dear William collection
Pattern: Original Design
Batting: Hobb's Heirloom Premium 80/20 Cotton Poly Batting
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2326 Sand
Quilting Thread:  Aurifil 50 wt. #2785 (Very Dark Navy) and #2132 (Tarnished Gold), Aurifil 40 wt.#2885 (Medium Spruce), Aurifil 12 wt. #4030 (Plum), and Guttermann #6340 (Light Navy)
Pieced and quilted by Jennifer Fulton

Please visit Bea, Sandra, and Geraldine who are also featuring the Dear William collection today. You'll find a link to their blogs and to the other Ambassadors participating in the blog hop at the bottom of this post.

Enter My Giveaway!

To celebrate the Island Batik Great Outdoors Blog Hop, I'm having a giveaway! Complete the Rafflecopter below after leaving a comment to enter to win a lovely charm pack from the Dear William collection by Island Batik (US residents only). You can earn an extra chance to win by visiting my Inquiring Quilter Facebook page. If you like what you see, please Like my page and Follow Me.

The giveaway is open through the blog hop, and closes on September 4th at midnight EST. I'll announce a winner on September 5th.

For International residents, the prize will be one free PDF pattern from my shop. I'm sorry I can't afford the cost of shipping overseas, but I wanted everyone to have a chance to win something. Just leave a comment and complete the Rafflecopter below to enter. You too can earn an extra chance to win a pattern by visiting my Facebook page.

Congratulations Judy Biggerstaff! You won! Send me your postal address and your charms will be on their way.

Enter the Island Batik Giveaway!

Use the Rafflecopter below to enter the Island Batik giveaway! Up for grabs is a Jungle Cruise 2-1/2" strip pack.

Continue the Hop to Enter More Giveaways!

The blog hop continues through September 4th. Be sure to visit the other Island Batik Ambassadors each day and see even more beautiful Island Batik fabric collections! There are additional giveaways, free patterns, and tutorials so be sure to visit each stop on the hop.

Follow me on social media to keep up with the blog hop and other happenings! You'll find the ways to follow at the top of my sidebar.

WEEK 1

Monday, August 6 - All A Flutter - Sharon @ Yellow Cat Quilt Designs and Michelle @ Creative Blonde

Tuesday, August 7 - Birds N’ Bees - Anna @ Ark Angel Creations and Jen @ Patterns by Jen

Wednesday, August 8 - Canterbury Manor - Sally @ Sally Manke and Sherry @ Powered by Quilting

Thursday, August 9 - Eclectic Garden - Jessica @ Desert Bloom Quilting and Karen @ Sew Karen-ly Created

Friday, August 10 - Vintage Morris - Joan @ Moosestash Quilting and Leanne @ Devoted Quilter

WEEK 2

Monday, August 13 - Safari - Amy @ Sew Incredibly Crazy and Anne @ Sweetgrass Designs

Tuesday, August 14 - Spring Blossoms - Maryellen @ Mary Mack Made Mine and Jackie @ If These Threads Could Talk

Wednesday, August 15 - Victoria and Albert - Barbara @ Bejewled Quilts by Barb and Dione @ Clever Chameleon

Thursday, August 16 - Wild Things - Connie @ Freemotion by the River and Connie @ Kauffman Designs

Friday, August 17 - Petting Zoo - Turid @ Den Syende Himmel and Sarah @ Sarah Goer Quilts

 WEEK 3

Monday, August 20 - Ocean Odyssey - Toby @ Gateway Quilts & Stuff and Karen @ The Quilt Rambler

Tuesday, August 21 - British Rose - Myra @ Busy Hands Quilts and Mania @ Mania for Quilts

Wednesday, August 22 - Dear William - Jennifer @ Inquiring Quilter (that's me!), Sandra @ MMM Quilts, and Geraldine @ Living Water Quilter

Thursday, August 23 - Dragonfly Dreams - Jeanette @ Inchworm Fabrics and Bea @ Be A Quilter

Friday, August 24 - Fur-ocious Friends - Tina @ Quilting Affection Designs and Jennifer @ Dizzy Quilter

WEEK 4

Monday, August 27 - Globetrotter - Pamela @ PamelaQuilts and Jennifer @ Curlicue Creations

Tuesday, August 28 - Jungle Cruise - Vicki @ Vicki's Crafts and Quilting and Alison @ Little Bunny Quilts

Wednesday, August 29 - Lavendula - Carole @ Carol Lyles Shaw and Nancy @ Masterpiece Quilting

Thursday, August 30 - London Calling - Anita @ Quilt in a Not-Shell and Terri @ Lizard Creek Quilts

Friday, August 31 - Spirit Rhythm - Steph @ Steph Jacobson and Janet @ Whispers of Yore

WEEK 5

Monday, September 3 - Sweet Tweets - Kathleen @ Kathleen McMusing and Suzy @ Adventurous Applique and Quilting

Tuesday, September 4 - Whatnot - Joyce @ heARTs Creations and Laura @ Slice of Pi Quilts

 

Disclosure: The products featured in the post were provided to me free of charge by Island Batik, Aurifil, and Hobbs.

Other Happenings This Week

I've been busy I must say. Yesterday, I released my block pattern for the Fall into a Quilt Along. The pattern is free for a limited time. Make the block to enter our giveaway! Click here for details.

 

Tomorrow I'll be hosting a special Wednesday Wait Loss link up. (Yeah I know, it's on Thursday this week.) Drop by and share State Fair quilts (or quilts with animals, food, games, or anything else related to a state fair) for a chance to win that giveaway!

Yep, it's giveaway week here on my blog! <grin>

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Tell me...what's your favorite memory of the great outdoors?

 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!

thanks everyone! be sure to leave an email address if you want to enter the giveaway!

My Visit to the Quilters Guild of Indianapolis

As some of you know, I'm a former President of the Quilter's Guild of Indianapolis. So it was both exciting and perhaps a bit scary when I was asked to to give a talk last Thursday. Turns out I need not have worried! The quilters in my guild could not have been more gracious or welcoming.

Interwoven - A quilt pattern in my book, "Idiots Guide: Quilting"

I think I was just putting too much pressure on myself to be perfect for my guild. As it turns out that's very ironic as my talk was entitled "Try It You'll Like It: Becoming a Brave Quilter." To become brave, I think you need to give up the illusion of perfection and instead embrace learning and growth. Hard to do, but as my talk proved to me, when you let go of perfection and relax you have fun!

Life in the Tide Pool - another quilt pattern from my book

During my presentation I chatted a bit about my quilting journey, including the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (mistakes I've made). <grin>

A quilt only a mother could love...one of my first quilts, a rag quilt that was loved so much by my mother it's kinda falling apart. See, who needs perfection? <grin>

Along the way I shared some of my quilts, and tried to encourage everyone to try new techniques. I've got two workshops scheduled in October if you happen to be in the Indianapolis area! My workshops will teach you how to foundation paper piece, and to make either a wall hanging or a table runner using my Mirage pattern.

 Mirage wall hanging - pattern in my store

Mirage wall hanging - pattern in my store

Mirage table runner - also included in the pattern

I totally advocate choosing small "I Can Finish It" projects to use when learning a new quilting technique which is why I chose small projects for my workshops. There's nothing better than the feeling of "Wow, I finished that!" and "OMG I just mastered that new technique! Look at me go!"

My second workshop teaches partial piecing or Y-seams. Workshop participants will make a table runner using either my Peppermint Twist or Water Vortex pattern.

Peppermint Twist quilt - pattern in my book

Water Vortex quilt - pattern in my shop.

I chose my two workshops because I think a lot of people shy away from paper-piecing and y-seams because they are different and new techniques for them. My hope is that people will take my workshops and walk away being glad they did. Couldn't ask for more than that!

It's no secret that my favorite part of any guild meeting is Show and Tell. I love looking at quilts! What was really cool this time though is that the guild surprised me by inviting members to bring quilts made with my patterns. Gosh that was cool. It almost made me cry.

 Suzie brought her version of my Stepping Stones pattern. She was so brave when she made this--working with a color palette that was really different than her normal one. She'd won a layer cake at Guild and wanted to use it with this pattern, which uses layer cakes.

Suzie brought her version of my Stepping Stones pattern. She was so brave when she made this--working with a color palette that was really different than her normal one. She'd won a layer cake at Guild and wanted to use it with this pattern, which uses layer cakes.

Stephanie brought this special version of Summer Social, a pattern I created for Dear Stella that's available in my shop.

This reminds me...if any of you have ever made a quilt using one of my patterns or tutorials or quilt alongs, I would love to see it! I host a linkup once a week (my Wednesday Wait Loss) that you can use to share a photo of your quilt.

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Tell me...what quilt technique do you hesitate to try? Leave a comment and I'll see if I can work up some tutorials.

 &nbsp;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!

April Island Batik Challenge

As you probably know, I'm an Island Batik Ambassador. Each month the Ambassadors are presented with a new challenge, and this month the challenge was to be inspired by quilt history to create something new.

Looking Back Vintage Quilt.jpg

Quilt history is a large topic, so at first I was a bit overwhelmed by the challenge. I decided to use the vintage quilts handed down through my husband's family as my inspiration. The collection is dear to me and it contains a lot of examples of classic quilt blocks.

For example, the Grandmother's Flower Garden is a classic setting for hexagon quilts (also known as Honeycomb quilts). In a Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt, a hexagon flower center is surrounded by two rows of coordinating "petals." Hexagon quilts are believed to be one of the oldest pieced quilt patterns, although it is thought that the Grandmother's Flower Garden setting did not became popular until the mid-1920s. It's one of my favorite ways to set a hexagon quilt and I know I want to make one some day.

Another classic quilt block is the Churn Dash block (also known as Hole in the Barn Door, Monkey Wrench, Fisherman's Reel, and Sherman's March to name a few). The Churn Dash is often one of the first blocks a quilter learns to make because it contains two classic block units: HSTs and Two-Bar. By changing the fabric placement within the block, you can really change it's look.

Another classic quilt block is the Drunkard's Path (also known as Solomon's Puzzle.) The Drunkard's Path block gets it's name from the wonky curved path the blocks create when set together. I'm lucky to own this version, which is hand-pieced and hand-quilted.

The Drunkard's Path block was used by women to raise Temperance awareness and may have also been used to help slaves find the Underground Railroad.  

I made a Drunkard's path quilt last year, as part of an Island Batik Ambassador challenge involving curved piecing. You can read more about my Sunrise Template quilt by clicking here.

Another vintage quilt in my collection is the Grandmother's Fan. The fan is a great way to use up scraps and can be made with scalloped, pointed, or smooth-edged fans. Fan blocks also show up in crazy quilts and may have been inspired by Asian art.

A classic quilt I've wanted to make for a while now is the Double Wedding Ring (variations of this block are known as Pickle Dish, Friendship Knot, and Endless Chain). The Double Wedding Ring quilt shown here was the first quilt I ever bought. It was made by Amish ladies -- hand-pieced and hand-quilted. I bought it years before I ever decided to learn to quilt. Quite obviously inspired by wedding bands linked together, the Double Wedding Ring is a popular quilt to make for a new bride.

Even with all this vintage inspiration, I still wasn't sure what kind of quilt I wanted to make until one day while driving home I heard the song, "Bless the Broken Road"  by Rascal Flatts. You see, this year is my 25th wedding anniversary and so I've been thinking about how Scott and I met oh so long ago. Suffice it to say that we met and married late in life, and that the road that led us to each other was both broken and winding.

With the words of the song playing in my head, I decided to design a quilt using the classic block Road to Oklahoma and to modify it somehow to reflect a broken road. You see, my darling Scott is from Oklahoma so using the Road to Oklahoma block as my inspiration seemed like it was all meant to be. Here's what a Road to Oklahoma block and quilt would look like in Island Batiks.

Although a Road to Oklahoma quilt would have been fun, I wanted to create a new block.

To create my Broken Road block, I decided to break up the road (the chain of squares that runs diagonally across the block). Here's what my Broken Road block looks like using the Island Batik collection, City Culture.

And here's my Broken Road quilt. I love how the broken road frames the stars formed by the corners of the block.

I'm often challenged to create a design that works with the fabric I was sent for a collection. In the case of City Culture, I was sent a pack of 2-1/2" strips. So first, I had to design the block to work with 2-1/2 squares. That part wasn't hard at all. Next though, I had to find a background that would work in the block.

Luckily, we were each send a set of Basics and Blenders that coordinated with a majority of the fabric collections in our box of batiks. I found two Basics that I thought might work as the background for my block. Trouble is, I didn't have enough of either to make even the smallest quilt so I had to make the background scrappy as well. Hmmmm. I think it works!

Truth be told, this quilt had a broken road of it's own. I originally laid out the blocks so they'd be very scrappy, and the result looked like this.

I liked it and didn't like it at the same time. I also wasn't sure I liked the color of the background and it's scrappiness but there wasn't anything I could do about that. My husband heard me fretting over the quilt and asked if he could help. Since the quilt was meant for him, I decided to let him rearrange the colors as he saw fit since I had to work that day at the quilt store and couldn't work any more on the quilt. I told Scott to take photos so I could show him working on his quilt. Here he is having fun.

I should probably mention here that Scott's Mom was a professional artist and teacher, so he feels right at home in a studio. He was having so much fun recoloring the quilt and recording his progress, that he even stopped to take a selfie!

Needless to say, when I returned from work and saw what he'd done I loved it. I was so happy with his arrangement that I sewed it up that night. The next day I layered and quilted it. For the quilting, I choose to highlight the points of each star and the points of the "broken road". The background was quilted using a simple meander.

The quilt turned out so nice, I may hire Scott as my permanent quilt assistant! <grin>

Here are the quilt details:

"Bless My Broken Road"
24" x 24"
Fabrics: Island Batik City Culture collection and basics Stonehenge and Camel for the background and binding).
Pattern: Broken Road, by Jennifer Fulton
Batting: Warm and Natural
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2610 Light Blue Grey
Quilting Thread:  Aurifil 50 wt. #2735 (Medium Blue) and #2850 (Juniper), Wonderfil 40 wt #1158 (Dark Plum), and Cotton + Steel for Sulky 50 wt. #753-1020 (Dark Peach)
Pieced and quilted by Jennifer Fulton

What a journey this broken road was! I really enjoyed this challenge and will probably revisit it again soon to create new modern patterns from vintage quilts and quilt blocks.

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Disclosure: The products featured here were provided to me free of charge by Island Batik.

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tell me..does your husband ever help with your quilts?

 &nbsp;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 Wicked Envy Quilt

Last October, I created a cute Halloween wall hanging as part of that month's Island Batik Ambassador challenge. I should say, I created the top, but didn't quite get the project quilted before the month ended.

As I made progress with the quilt, I updated you on my blog. After I finished quilting and binding Wicked Envy, the weather started playing tricks with me so I couldn't get good photos of it to share with you. Well, the weather finally turned and I got my shots!

So without further ado, here is Wicked Envy.

Wicked Envy quilted 13.jpg

The Island Batik challenge that month was borders. So as you can see, I really took that challenge to heart! I started with an applique block based on the play, Wicked. Then I added a crossed broom paper-pieced border. Next came a plain border, followed by a checked border on two sides and a paper-pieced witches hat border on the other. I finished it all off with a wide border and a cat applique.

I quilted the Wicked applique block rather simply, by following the applique, then quilting curls and swirls in the background. I also used my quilting to add details to her hat and cloak.

For the brooms, I quilted straw details and more swirls and curls.

I used curls in the checker border and in the wide outer border.

For the witches hats, I quilted diagonal lines.

I hope she was worth the wait!

Here are the details:

"Wicked Envy"
43" x 43"
Fabrics: Island Batik fabrics from various collections
Pattern: My design
Batting: Quilter's Dream Request
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2610 Light Blue Grey
Quilting Thread:  Aurifil 50 wt #2150 (Pumpkin), Madeira Polyneon 40 wt #1950 (Green), Wonderfil Konfetti 50 wt KT605 (Purple), Wonderfil Invisafil #710 (Deepest Burgundy), Superior Thread Fantastico 40 wt #5041 (King's Crown), and Sulky 40 wt #1135 (Pastel Yellow)
Pieced and quilted by Jennifer Fulton

I love being ready for a holiday months before! <grin>

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Disclosure: The products featured here were provided to me free of charge by Island Batik.

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tell me..I'm ready for Halloween! How about you?

 &nbsp;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!