Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Island Batik Row by Row Challenge

Paul: There is a new restaurant in Ashburn.
Me: Uh huh.
Paul: Take a look. They have alligator.
Me: Cajun?
Paul: Yes. They have andouille sausage, shrimp and grits, jambalaya and also beignets.
Me: They sure look authentic.
Paul: Let's go.
Me: Happily.
Paul: Valentine's Day?
Me: Absolutely NOT.
Paul: Oh come on.
Me: Every place is overpriced, overhyped and overcrowded.
Paul: They cannot be any more overpriced than they already are.
Me: I did not come to America because I was missing crowds. 

I won the argument. We will go another day.  
In my opinion, the perfect Valentine's Day is spent at home with takeout while watching a favorite movie.

An imperfect quilt

A perfect quilt (in my opinion) does not exist. Anything can be made better and that quest for perfection is a recipe for unhappiness. To make this point, I made a quilt - Pobody's Nerfect.

The Island Batik February Challenge (and Blog Hop) requirement was simple. Using the Fall 2021 Fabric Bundle, make a row by row quilt, lap size (or larger), using any technique(s).

I received Lace and Grace. It is a Signature Collection for Chris Hoover of Whirligig Designs designed by Kathy Engle. It is a beautiful collection and I love it.  Lace and Grace should be shipping to your local quilt stores now.

I used Island Batik Solid White for the background. I believe it best shows off the spring colors of the collection.

I had begun thinking about this challenge in December 2021, while I was still nursing the pain of my failed travel plans. Naturally, the bird block was first.

Designed in EQ8

Bird Blocks

Birds needs trees to nest. So trees were added. I had first designed this twin tree block in 2020 for the quilt tops made for the Australian Bush Fires Relief.

Twin Trees

Of course I would like to live in a place with lots of trees and birds chirping nearby. So houses were added. 

House Block

The flowers are aspirational.  My yard is a mess but there is some green growth, when it is not covered with snow. 

Grassy Border on the Bottom

The grass formed a natural border on the bottom. I wanted to add a similar element on the top. Paul suggested sky or clouds. Too tame, I thought. It needs festoons or buntings, like celebrations.

Festoons Border on the Top

Although I designed the quilt in EQ8, some changes were made in the process, adding what I liked and removing what did not seem to work.

Mock up in EQ8

Every row has a mistake, intentionally added, to justify the slogan - Pobody's Nerfect. 
Find every mistake, smile and then say aloud. "I am not perfect and I don't have to be."

Pobody's Perfect

I used 80/20 Cotton Bleached batting by Hobbs
I used Aurifil Thread for both sewing (50 wt) and quilting (40 wt)
I used 80/12 Microtex Schmetz Needle for sewing and 90/14 Schmetz needle for quilting.

Having spent all my passion in patchwork, I quilted simple squiggly lines using my walking foot.  The binding is Island Batik Neutral Cream.

Gorgeous Fabrics

Picnic Ready!

You make me happy...

Pobody's Nerfect finished at about 60" by 70" and I am perfectly happy with all its imperfections :-)

Happily Imperfect :-)

Island Batik is giving away some gorgeous fabrics to celebrate these new releases. You don't want to miss it. And speaking of things you do not want to miss, here is a complete listing of all the Island Batik ambassadors and the links to their blogs. Some are cute, some are beautiful and some are so handsome (I want to sleep with them). 

January 31:

Jennifer Thomas, Curlicue Creations
Denise Looney, For the Love of Geese 

February 1:

Pamela Boatright, Pamela Quilts
Andi Stanfield, True Blue Quilts

February 2:

Megan Best, Bestquilter

February 3:

Maryellen McAuliffe, Mary Mack Made Mine
Brenda Alburl, Songbird Designs

February 7:

Emily Leachman, The Darling Dogwood
Leah Malasky, Quilted Delights

February 8:

Suzy Webster, Websterquilt
Connie Kauffman, Kauffman Designs

February 9:

Reed Johnson, Blue Bear Quilts

February 10:

Brianna Roberts, Sew Cute and Quirky
Sandra Starley, Textile Time Travels

February 14:

Michelle Roberts, Creative Blonde
Jane Hauprich, Stitch by Stitch Custom Quilting

February 15:

Claudia Porter, Create with Claudia

February 16:

Anorina Morris, Samelia’s Mum
Preeti Harris, Sew Preeti Quilts (this is me)

February 17:

Elizabeth DeCroos, Epida Studio
Gail Renna, Quilt Haven Threads

February 21:

Gail Sheppard, Quilting Gail
Jennifer Fulton, Inquiring Quilter

February 22:

Mania Hatzioannidi, Mania for Quilts
Lisa Pickering, Lisa’s Quilting Passion

I will be sharing with all my favorite linky parties. See full list on the sidebar. And if you tell me about your battle (or skirmish) with the pursuit of perfection, I will enter you in a giveaway of my own.  

For readers in the US - A scrap pack of assorted fabrics (2 prizes). For international readers - a pattern from my Etsy Shop (2 prizes). The giveaway is open till February 28, 2022. I will announce the winners on March 2, 2022.

Paul: Can we go now?
Me: I thought you'd never ask.
Paul: BRAT!!! You have been so busy...
Me: Well, I have some time before the next challenge...

Disclosure: The fabrics, batting, thread and needles were generously supplied by the following companies: Island Batik   Aurifil Thread   Hobbs Batting & Schmetz Needles !!

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Works in Progress

I don't have a finish, but should that stop me for sharing?

According to Angela, February shall be devoted to teal, aqua and turquoise scraps. Here is what I did.

Teal/Aqua Scraps

Fish :-)

Scrappy Improv 

Block in the works

15 blocks in two days!!!

My Island Batik Row by Row quilt (for the February Challenge and BlogHop) is complete.  I received the collection Lace and Grace, designed by Kathy Engle for Chris Hoover of Whirligig Designs. This signature collection should be in stores now. 

Lace and Grace :-)

 Although I will share on February 16, here is a sneak peek of my Row by Row quilt. 

Sneak Peek :-)

Floral Backing

I have been enjoying the Row by Row quilts created by other Island Batik ambassadors. Check out these posts by fellow Island Batik ambassadors, Emily Leachman and Connie Kauffman.  Not only these are super cute and absolutely adorable quilts, they both have giveaways. 

While I was anxiously waiting (darn the supply chain issues) for the Aurifil Thread and Schmetz Needles to arrive, I needed to do something to minimize the anxiety level.  Playing with leftover Island Batik scraps and Island Batik Solid White has been therapeutic.  

Therapeutic Piecing

The colorful fabric in the foreground sparkles as the colorful Christmas lights twinkle in the room behind. No, it is not an old picture. The Christmas lights will stay up till Valentine's Day (my house my rules).

Finally, this week I received the Aurifil Thread Color Builder for the March challenge.  I love orange :-)

Aurifil Color Builder - Tuscany Orange 

Here is the Island Batik fabric to match. I am so excited about this project.

Fabric Pull for the March Island Batik Project

I also received the pack of Schmetz needles, I have come to rely upon. I don't use anything else. Is there anything else?

Sewing, Quilting and Topstitch Needles by Schmetz

I will be sharing with Angela's Linky Party and all my other favorites (se full list on the sidebar). 

If you are suffering from the effects of the supply chain doldrums, I recommend ignoring the dishes, getting takeout and playing with scraps. It has worked for me :-)