Sunday, January 26, 2014

Completed Bundles of Joy

Just finished the receiving blankets, burp cloths and bibs for the double baby shower on February 1st, a whole week in adavance. Yippee!!!

Thanks to Jenny of Missouri Star Quilt Company. The tutorial for making receiving blankets is super easy, and always creates an impression. Here they are:

The fun part is using the left over scraps from the receiving blankets to make the burp cloths and the bibs. I particularly like the chevron fabric.

The completed bundles, tied with a golden ribbon, are ready to go.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Every end is a new beginning, but...

As soon as I completed "Bear Hugs", I wanted to get started on my next quilt. Are you kidding?
I bought and cut the fabric for the next quilt even before I completed Bear Hugs quilt. Here are the fabrics for the next quilt.

Blue Batik and a matching solid, Steel Grey Batik and a somewhat matching solid.  I have a rail fence pattern in mind. Yes, it is for a boy's quilt and I am hoping it will finish at twin size. I am so excited to start this one. I am going to call it Alex's Quilt. I am so loving these colors already.

So, what is the problem?
Get started already. You can blog later.

Wait. There is a double baby shower on February 1st. And I want to go to this double baby shower. That means, I need to keep Alex's quilt aside and make some receiving blankets, burp cloths and bibs. The good thing is this - I like making receiving blankets, they come together really quickly, and I have these cute flannel fabrics to work with. The bibs are so cute. I need another word for cute, seriously.

Blue fabrics - both are expecting boys!!!

So pause on Alex's Quilt. Full steam ahead on Baby Shower items. Life is good!!! I will post pictures of completed blankets, bibs etc. I do love comments!!! Hint, hint hint.

Bear Hugs (2014-1)

"Bear Hugs" is my first completed quilt of 2014. It is about 43" square and it is the cutest quilt I have made so far. So many times, parents will pick light/pastel shades for the baby. And I have always wondered - why pastel? I am sure that babies like bright colors. And pastels just get dirty soon.

Don't know about you but I LOVE bright colors - the brighter the better.

I also added a label.

Who is it for?
I don't know. But I am sure it will make someone very happy.

I so loved the - Noah's jungle panel from Northcott that I went on an online hunt to find it. I just had a feeling that this quilt will be requested again and I want to make sure that I had the panel(s) handy.
Most places it was sold out. Ericas' store had it in stock and I placed the order for five. Next day, I received a call from them telling me that they had only one. Did I still want it? Yes, please.

My search continued. I found another online fabric store Stitch and Frame and fortunately they had some of these panels in stock at an unbelievably reasonable price. I placed the order and now I wait to receive the jungle babies.

It amazes me that two years ago I had no knowledge of online fabric retailers and quilters, quilt shows, quilting bees etc. And now, although I still have very limited knowledge, I know that there is a whole quilting universe out there. 

Friday, January 17, 2014

Cuteness Overload

Q: What inspires you to create something?
A: Cute Fabric.

And this is the cutest fabric I have ever laid eyes on!!! It is Noah's Jungle from Northcott Fabrics.

I knew I had to make it into a baby quilt - someday. But, when I saw this fabric at Jo-Ann, I knew I had to make this the first quilt of 2014. The panels above would be part of the pieced top and this cute fabric (below) would be the backing.

The quilt is almost complete. But I could not wait to share the fabric inspirations in blogland! Update coming soon. What is the cutest fabric you have seen? Let me know.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Hello 2014 - Starting small

A very happy new year to you!!!

Now that I have finished documenting last year's journey, I am all caught up and now this blog can be current. Well, more or less. I decided to start the new year small - by making place mats using the quilt as you go technique. Thanks to Jenny of Missouri Star Quilt Company. Click here for the tutorial.

I had a jelly roll, fabrics in red and black and bits of batting that are too small to be used in a quilt but too large to throw away. Here is the outcome

I know it is eye-popping!

It is like making very small quilts - piecing, backing, binding - the whole deal. Although QAYG makes it a breeze. And I love the bright colors.

When I was making these, I showed one to my friend Iris and she squealed with delight.
Oh, you like it, I said. Can I make you one?
One? I need four.
Of course, you do. Well, I'll happily make them for you. But, first you must visit my blog and leave me a comment.

She has not been to the blog and I am still keeping these babies. I will update when she gets her act together. Oh Iris!

And they are reversible.

Friday, January 10, 2014

2013 in retrospect

Whew!!! what an amazing start to a fascinating journey. I started quilting in 2013 and I know that I can never stop.  I completed 11 quilts in 2013. I know, not enough. My day job gets in the way!!!
That is why, I am looking forward to retirement when I can do this full-time.  Here is a snapshot of my completed quilts in 2013.

Left Column - Sunshine Quilt,  Quick StrippieBlue Rail Fence
Middle Column - Quilt #2 (D9P), Chinese Coins, Quilt # 1Pink Square Dance
Right Column - Alphabet SoupDown to EarthPink Pinwheels, Basket Case

Thank you for stopping by. Please leave a comment and let me know how you found this page.
And have a fulfilling new year!!!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Quilt # 11 - Pink Square Dance

The Pink Square Dance has been my most ambitious project so far. It had twelve different pink fabrics in the quilt top. I cut 192 half square triangles. I used the HST method from Jenny of Missouri Star Quilt Company. Here are the blocks.

Light Pink BLocks

Medium Pink Blocks
 Sometimes people ask me, is it not hard to give away something that has taken so much of your time and effort? Here is what I say. Making this quilt has given me so much joy - as I put one piece next to another, as the puzzle completes and the quilt comes to life, it is such an amazing feeling. When someone receives that quilt, I believe that the joy just multiplies.

I knew I wanted to make a pink quilt - twin bed size. I collected these pink fabrics over several months. Most were fat quarters, two were remnants and two I bought as yardage.

This was the first time when I realized that spray starch is a necessity to reduce wonkiness in these bias blocks. I use Mary Ellen's Best Press. Trust me, it is worth it. Take the extra step, you will regret if you don't.And if you are impatient, quilting is not for you!!!

192 blocks, arranged 12 by 16. I figured, it did not need a border. that way the design just flows...I chose bright purple binding and a pink floral for backing.

Ooh, this was so exciting - I love how this quilt was coming together. This was also the first quilt, where I decide to add a label. How to label a quilt - check Crazy Mom Quilts.

And here is the finished Pink Square Dance.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Quilt # 10 - Basket Case

I decided I should surprise my dear mother-in-law with a quilt for her bed. I knew I would be seeing her at Thanksgiving and I must complete it before then. Yes, I could finish it later and send it to her by Christmas. But then I would not be able to see face, her joy (hopefully) and her totally happy but bewildered expression on receiving the humongous (for me) quilt.

I decided to make a queen size quilt and complete it before Thanksgiving. Yeah, I like challenges. I also like bright colors, simple designs and stunning overall effect. Did I achieve that?

This is the largest quilt I have made. When I was preparing the quilt sandwich, it took all of my dining room floor.

It hurt my arms and neck and shoulders to quilt it on my Janome. I chose a stitch that could be mirrored so that when the batik panel was on the left I kept the swirls on the left and when the batik panel came to the right, I hit the mirror image button. This way all batik panels have the same swirls on their edges. Love my Janome.
Rail Fence Basket Weave, 85" by 95". Batting - Warm & Natural. Quilted on Janome.

Can I say I am proud? Well, I am definitely happy.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Quilt # 9 - Blue Rail Fence

A rail fence is a beginner's favorite pattern, I am told. Needless to say, since I am a beginner I was totally drawn to this pattern. I chose blue fabrics for a twin size quilt for my nephew Divik.

When I finished piecing the quilt top, it felt huge. This was the first time I was working with so much fabric. All my previous quilts were baby quilts or bit larger. I had machine quilted all previous quilts myself but this one made me nervous. I wanted it to be perfect and felt that I could not quilt it on my machine. So, I asked Miss Carrie who works at the Circle Sewing Studio with Parker to quilt it for me on her long-arm machine. I received the quilted sandwich and I liked the quilting. I then completed the binding. Here is the finished quilt.

It was a big relief to finally finish this one. This quilt is for Divik as a Christmas present.

Quilt # 8 - Quick Strippie

I have to thank for this fun, fast and really stunning pattern. All you need is one focus fabric, one contrast fabric and one to highlight the focus fabric. Strips, Stitch and Pieced top in a heartbeat. I put together this quilt top in one afternoon. The bright blue binding really makes it pop!

This quilt is for Kavya. Kavya is about five years old and lives in the house next to my sister's. My sister's kids call me "Mausi" (mother's sister). When I met Kavya in November, 2013, she started calling me Mausi, just like my niece and nephew. So, now I have two nieces and a nephew. I knew that minute that I would make her a quilt. However, since I was slammed with Christmas gifts etc. it had to be a quick one. A quick strippie was the answer - simple and stunning.