March Island Batik Challenge

I'm an Island Batik Ambassador, and each month we get a new challenge.

This month's Island Batik challenge is to try a quilting technique that's new to us. This was a challenge for me, since I love trying new things and have thus tried a lot of quilting techniques such as paper-piecing, machine applique, partial piecing, and so on.

Try a Technique.jpg

To find something I'd never done, I reached into my Someday list--making a Lone Star quilt.

Let me explain a bit about how you make a Lone Star quilt and why making one has been on my Someday list for so long.

Making a Lone Star typically involves cutting and sewing diamonds (with bias edges) into large diamond shapes (with longer bias edges) that you then sew together by insetting squares and triangles (using partial piecing) between the diamonds until you end up with a square.

More or less. <grin>

Yep. Partial piecing and bias edges! No wonder a lot of people that attempt a Lone Star end up with a quilted pimple and not a flat quilt. Knowing this, I'd put off making a Lone Star for years---until I heard about QuiltSmart.

With QuiltSmart, you use a lightweight printed foundation to foundation piece rectangles into diamond shapes. With this method, you trade bias edges and partial piecing for foundation piecing. Frankly, I consider that a fair trade since in return I was practically guaranteed success.

After deciding on the Island Batik collection I wanted to use (Plum Delicious), I cut my rectangles and arranged them in stacks.

I then sewed the rectangles together in rows. To get the diamond shapes you sew at an angle, sewing on the lines marked on the diamond foundations.

After completing the four rows, you sew the rows together using the lines on the foundations.

You then press the back of each diamond and trim it.

The QuiltSmart method ensures that you'll get diamonds that look like diamonds. That's pretty cool, but so is their quilt top construction method! Instead of sewing the diamonds together using partial piecing methods and inserting triangles and squares between the diamonds, with QuiltSmart you basically create large HSTs and then sew them together into a quilt top. Because you're working with squares when you sew the top together, it's easy to achieve good results.

So after creating the diamonds, you add triangles along two sides of each diamond to form a big right triangle. Then you sew these right triangles together to form what are essentially large half-square triangles. Then you just sew the HSTs together to create your Lone Star!

It's a good idea to square up these HSTs before sewing them together---what you need here is a right angle at each of the four points of the center. The QuiltSmart method works so well, I would definitely use it again to make another Lone Star.

I quilted the diamonds with shallow curves to emphasize their shape. I used thread colors that matched each diamond. Can you tell I had fun picking out the colors? <grin> I love my thread collection!

I quilted the background by creating a circular area that I filled with a curvy loop design. I filled the next section with small circles, and the outer section with parallel lines.

Have I shown you the back? I used a lovely purple dot batik.

Here are the details:

"Sunset at St. John's"
20" x 20"
Fabrics: Island Batik Plum Delicious collection (star) and a blender BE24-A2 (Marble-Blackberry, for the background and binding). For the backing, I chose another blender, BE31-B1 (Bubbles-Raspberry).
Pattern: QuiltSmart, Little Lone Star
Batting: Quilter's Dream Request
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2610 Light Blue Grey
Quilting Thread:  Robinson-Anton J Metallic 40 wt (Gold), WonderFil Konfetti 50 wt #KT402 (Drab Orange), Aurifil 50 wt. #2530 (Blossom Pink), Sulky 40 wt. #1190 (Medium Burgundy), Wonderfil Konfetti 50 wt #KT605 (Purple), Wonderfil InvisaFil 100 wt #708 (Deep Pansy Purple), Aurifil 50 wt #2395 (Pumpkin Spice), and Wonderfil InvisaFil 100 wt #710 (Deepest Burgandy)
Pieced and quilted by Jennifer Fulton

I'm going to call this experiment into Lone Star quilt making a success! Zora loves my new quilt too.

Blog signature 2.jpg

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

you might also like

tell me..have you ever made a lone star quilt?

&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!

Welcome to My Day on the Modern Plus Sign Quilts Book Hop

Welcome to my stop on the Modern Plus Sign Quilts Book Hop! I've known the authors-- Cheryl @ Meadow Mist Designs and Paige @ Quilting Blooms--for some time, and I love their work. Cheryl hosted the New Quilt Bloggers for several years, and was extremely generous with her time and talent, and helped me on the road to becoming the quilt blogger I am today.

I'm lucky to call Paige a friend and to have her in my online bee, Bee Inspired. Paige is as talented a quilter as she is humble. I love them both and was thrilled when I was asked to participate in this hop.

Photo courtesy of C & T Publications.

Each day in the hop features two quilts from this wonderful book. Today, the featured quilts are "Petal Plus" and "Faceted Rings."

Each participant in the hop was asked to select a quilt and to make it--in any size, any colors, and with any changes we liked. I chose "Faceted Rings."

Designed, pieced, and quilted by Cheryl Brickey. Photo courtesy of C & T Publications.

I love Plus Sign quilts, so frankly it was hard to choose just one from the book but this one spoke to me. I loved it's dimensionality, and the interplay of the rings from block to block. When I saw it I knew I had to make it.

Photo courtesy of C & T Publications.

Like Cheryl, I chose to use solids in my version of Faceted Rings. Here's my fabric pull. No surprises here since these are some of my favorite colors.

The original quilt is 40" x 40", but I knew that I wanted to make something smaller. So I played with the design a bit, changing the yellow and white background sections in the original to two colors instead of one, and adding some borders. Since what I loved about Faceted Rings was it's 3-dimensional look, I wanted to emphasize that with my color placement, dividing each triangle into light or dark.

I call my version "On the Plus Side."

I decided early on to quilt my version with straight lines. While quilting the plus sign in the middle of the block, I decided to try quilting every other section. That worked well I think, until I got out to the outer border. When I left the quilting out of the light coral sections, the quilt didn't want to lay as flat as I wanted. So I quilted the outer border entirely.

On the back of the quilt, I used a butterfly print that combined most of the colors from the front. The print is by Joann Messmore for Cranston Print Works.

Here are the quilt details.

"On the Plus Side"
18" x 18"
Fabrics: Solids in light and dark teal, gray, magenta, and blue-violet; backing is by Joann Messmore by Cranston Print Works
Pattern: Faceted Rings by Cheryl @ Meadow Mist Designs
Batting: Quilter's Dream Request
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2600 Dove
Quilting Thread:  Aurifil 50 wt. #2810 (Turquoise), Wonderfil Invisifil 100 wt. #718 (Winet Sky Grey), #714 (Lilac) and #605 (Christmas Red), Wonderfil Konfetti 50 wt. #KT605 (Purple), Mettler 50 wt. #642 (Dark Charcoal) and #806 Blush Pink
Pieced and quilted by Jennifer Fulton

Here's what my color placement would look like in a quilt the same size as Faceted Rings. Seeing it like this, I think a single-color background like Cheryl's original quilt (for example, a solid dark blue background instead of the light and dark blue background shown here) would look better, although I like the effect of using two blues in my small wall quilt.

The Faceted Rings block is paper-pieced and would be easy to sew even for a beginner because there are so few pieces. In addition, it would be simple to make the quilt larger by simply adding more blocks and even some borders if you like. There's a tutorial on paper-piecing (and the other techniques used in the book quilts) at the front of the book, so there's no reason not to give Faceted Rings a try. It's such a gorgeous quilt!

You can purchase signed copies of Modern Plus Sign Quilts from Cheryl's Etsy shop, Paige's Etsy shop, or from Amazon.

Photo courtesy of C &amp; T Publications.

Photo courtesy of C & T Publications.

Here's the schedule for the Modern Plus Sign Quilts Book Hop. Be sure to visit Cheryl and Paige's blogs each day to enter their giveaways. To see our versions of the book quilts, visit the book hop participants.

Monday, March 12th
Cheryl @Meadow Mist Designs
Paige @Quilted Blooms

Tuesday, March 13th
Soma @Whims and Fancies
Ann @Brown Paws Quilting
Kitty @Night Quilter
Sophie @Luna Lovequilts
Afton @Quilting Mod
Shelley @The Carpenters Daughter Who Quilts

Wednesday, March 14th
Jayne @Twiggy and Opal
Jen @A Dream and a Stitch
Abigail @Cut & Alter
Yvonne @Quilting Jetgirl
Sandra @mmm! quilts
Karen @Run Sew Fun

Thursday, March 15th
Linda @Flourishing Palms
Bernie @Needle and Foot
Liz @Savor Every Stitch
Stacey @Stacey In Stitches
Michelle @From Bolt to Beauty
Patty @Elm Street Quilts
Melanie @A Bit of Scrap Stuff Blog

Friday, March 16th
Myra @Busy Hands Quilts
Izzy @Dizzy Quilts
Ruth @Charly and Ben’s Crafty Corner
Christa @Christa Quilts

Monday, March 19th
Jessica @ Quilty Habit
Cindy @ Hyacinth Quilt Designs
Jennifer @ The Inquiring Quilter
Julie @ The Crafty Quilter

Tuesday, March 20th
Tish @ Tish N Wonderland
Judy @ Sew Some Sunshine
Emily @ The Darling Dogwood
Wanda @ Wanda's Life Sampler
Karen @ Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats
Katherine @ Sew Me Something Good

Wednesday, March 21st
Anja @ Anja Quilts
Kate @ Smiles from Kate
Sue @ Sevenoaks Street Quilts
Carole @ From My Carolina Home
Alison @ Little Bunny Quilts

Thursday, March 22nd
Debbie @ Esch House Quilts
Laura @ Slice of Pi Quilts
Beth @ Cooking Up Quilts
Janice @ Color Creating and Quilting
Joanne @ Quilts by Joanne

Friday, March 23rd
Cheryl @Meadow Mist Designs
Paige @Quilted Blooms

Blog signature 2.jpg

you might also like

tell me...what colors would you use to make Faceted Rings?

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 Island Batik Mini Love Quilt

February is the month of love, and the Island Batik Ambassadors are celebrating with a Mini Love challenge!

Mini Love.jpg

The challenge was to make a mini quilt celebrating love, using a special Valentine's/Galentine's fabric bundle Island Batik including in my recent box.

I combined the ones they sent with the Valentine's fabrics I received last year and a few I pulled from Stash Builder rolls to make a large selection of pinks and reds with which I could work. Here are the fabrics I used in my mini quilt.

For this mini, I started with the name I had in mind for it: "Hearts a Flutter". Immediately, I thought of hearts fluttering in the air. But could I achieve it?

I made the hearts first, in three sizes. Then I laid them out on my design wall as I saw them in my mind. To stitch them together, I added the background fabric to one heart, overlapped the fabrics then cut and stitched.

Here's a close up of the cutting action. I would pin the two pieces so they would stay in alignment and then carry them carefully to my cutting board. I would then align my ruler where I wanted to cut, then slip the piece on the right out of the way and make my cut. If needed, I'd repeat this process to trim the piece on the right at the same angle. Then I'd sew the two pieces together.

I continued this process, connecting one heart at a time until the lower half was done. Then I sewed the two halves together.

Next, it was time to consider the quilting. When I came up with the idea of hearts fluttering in the air, I thought immediately of swirly, curly quilting lines that would join the hearts in a flight path. I added tiny hearts at the end of some of the curls for a touch of whimsy.

Here are the details:

"Hearts a Flutter"
18" x 22"
Fabrics: Island Batik Galentine's/Valentine's bundle, including Carnation (for the background) and Carnation Mini Flower (for the binding)
Pattern: Original Design
Batting: Quilter's Dream Request
Piecing Thread: Aurifil 50 wt. #2021 Natural White
Quilting Thread:  Aurifil 50 wt. #2410 (Pale Pink), #2250 (Red), and #2530 (Blossom Pink); WonderFil Konfetti 50 wt. #KT308 (Carnation Pink)
Pieced and quilted by Jennifer Fulton

Blog signature 2.jpg

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

you might also like

tell me..have you ever made a quilt to celebrate a special event?

&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!

Love Entwined Mini Quilt - A New Pattern!

Happy Almost Valentine's!

I love Valentine's Day, and often make a quilt to celebrate. A few years ago, I made this table runner I call "All You Need is Love."

I really enjoyed designing the table runner to use a Valentine's-themed jelly roll I had in my stash. I remember that it was a lot of fun adding the letters, hearts, and especially the rick-rack! I gotta remember that and use rick-rack in another project soon. You can read the whole story about my table runner here.

Last year for Valentine's Day, I made a cute mini quilt I call "Love Entwined."

You see, as an Island Batik Ambassador, we get a unique challenge each month. And last February, we were challenged to make a mini-quilt for Valentine's Day. This time I challenged myself to build a design around the red and pink batiks they'd included in my first shipment of batiks.

I played around with the fabrics for awhile, then the design for Love Entwined simply came to mind. I had a lot of fun making it, and deciding on the quilting. Sometimes inspiration just happens! You can read more about Love Entwined here.

This year, I decided to draft the pattern for Love Entwined so you can make it too! I used batiks for my version, but you could use Valentine's prints instead if you like. You'll find the pattern in my shop. As a special Valentine's present to you, for today only, the PDF version of the pattern is free! (The pattern will be available for free download until midnight EST February 9th.)

The Island Batik Ambassadors will be soon be celebrating Valentine's with new mini quilts. I'm working on my design now, awaiting the new box of batiks that is on it's way. Be sure to catch my Valentine's Day post to see my new mini quilt.

The Island Batik Ambassador's are also celebrating Galentine's Day (a day to celebrate the great women in your life). Galentine's occurs on February 13th so that's when I'll be posting the mug rugs I'm making. Be sure to come back on the 13th and share the love!

My Wednesday Wait Loss on February 14th will feature a special link up where you can share your Valentine's and Galentine's quilts, so get your projects ready for the celebration! You can link up old projects, new projects, and even unfinished projects! I want to fill the linkup with lots of love.

In the meantime, I'm having a giveaway with my current Wednesday Wait Loss to celebrate it's first anniversary, so jump over there and link up a current work in progress or finished quilt.

Blog signature 2.jpg

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

you might also like

tell me..have you ever made a quilt to celebrate a special event?

&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!