Finish: Flowery Wall-hanging


Wall-Hanging a photo by clumsy chord on Flickr.

I have the most insipid names for the things I make. Well, I suppose that’s because I just don’t name anything, so I always default to basic description. This is a wall-hanging with flowers on it and too many flowery prints, so flowery wall-hanging. A baby quilt that’s pink? Pink baby quilt. I don’t like to label my quilts, and don’t, so I can’t see any sense in giving names to them either. I tend to think of my projects by certain names – the origami quilt, the brown quilt-along, the reflection one – but I don’t think they’re art that’ll someday be catalogued, you know? If, 200 years from now, some quilt historian finds the slightly tattered remains of this wall-hanging… I don’t mind if it’s called WH200129-94 with no name, creator, or date attached to it.

Anyway, yes. A wall-hanging that is flowery. I made this in the fall/winter of 2010, for my mom, but didn’t actually get it finished until early in January. (My photo is dated January 6.) I bought it as a kit (for a table-runner, which I made square rather than long) because the colours seemed like they might match my mom’s upstairs. I don’t know if it matches as I’ve not been back home since I sent it off to her, but it seemed like it might work. There’s a lot that I don’t really like about this project – the fabrics, the colours, the style, etc. It’s certainly not to my tastes, but when it comes to gifts, it’s best not to please yourself, anyway, right?

Anyway, it’s hard to tell in the photo, but there are buttons on the center of each flower, to help tie in the black thread I used to stitch down the appliqu├ęd flowers. I quilted it using a kind of beige coloured thread, mainly straight line quilting around the outsides of things (kind of rounded-ish around the flowers) and then echoing the shape of the blocks.

This was the first project I ever made where I did the binding entirely myself. Normally I pass my quilts off to my mom for the binding, but it was for her, so it was time I learned to do it myself, and I was pretty happy with how it turned out. I’ve come to enjoy the binding process. Not so much stitching it on to begin with, but hand-stitching it down around the back. It’s satisfying to do.

Finish: Pink Quilt-along Quilt

This is the very moment that the pin on the right let go and the quilt nearly went flying across my muddy, nasty backyard while I had a (video) camera hung around my wrist and the regular camera around my neck and a pair heels for shoes that were aerating the grass. Fortunately only three of six or seven pins let go, so the quilt stayed hanging awkwardly on the fence while I mentally debated the benefits of recording the moment versus trying to stop it from happening. (And in light of the shoes, I probably couldn’t have made it over there fast enough to catch the quilt if it had gone airborne anyway.)

I’m going to have to try another day to get a full-on shot of the quilt, because I don’t like any of the against the fence ones very much.

Of course, I do have other shots I can use anyway. It’s not that they’re horrible (though I’m no photographer), but the lighting isn’t quite right and I really, really should have pressed the quilt before trying to photograph it. I had, originally, pinned the quilt to the fence down the right hand-side so that it wouldn’t get caught by the wind, but that mainly worked to show off how badly it needed pressing.

Pink Quilt-along Quilt

Pink Quilt-along Quilt a photo by clumsy chord on Flickr.

This is the most head-on shot that I’ve got of this quilt. It’s my first of two quilts for Cherri House’s quilt-along, which you can find here (scroll down, then click back to page two) at Cherry House Quilts.

This sweet and girly little quilt is about 33-in x 39-in, if I remember right (I did a really loose measurement when I was making the binding but I’ve kind of blanked it out). I quilted it in wavy vertical lines, spaced about 1-in apart. I was really frustrated to find that even with my walking foot, the top layer of the quilt was shifting pretty massively. Eventually I gave up trying to prevent the problem (I picked out probably 10 or more lines of quilting) and decided just to live with the shiftiness. Maybe once it’s washed, it won’t be so noticeable.

Pink Quilt-along Quilt

Pink Quilt-along Quilt a photo by clumsy chord on Flickr.

This quilt uses Kona cottons almost exclusively, but I decided to throw in a few squares of fabric from the Back Porch Bouquet line, the Pink and Tan Dots, which I also used as part of the binding. I probably should have left that fabric out of the binding because I only had a fat quarter of it, which means that the binding has a LOT of seams in it. I also used leftover strips of two of the colours from the body of the quilt – Carnation, the brighter pink at the top left corner, and Garnet, the deeper wine colour on the bottom right. I wish I’d had enough of the garnet to do the entire binding in it because I really liked that deep dark colour framing the quilt.

The body of the quilt uses Kona Pink for both the main background colour and for the backing. I didn’t dress up the back of the quilt at all, just used one solid piece of pink fabric. The four stripes of colour on the front are Garnet, Pearl Pink, Carnation, and Baby Pink (moving left to right). If I could, I would use something different in place of Baby Pink, since it’s far too similar to the background colour, and it kind of sinks back into the background.

I have no recipient in mind for this quilt, but I think I’ll keep it for a while, in case anyone I know winds up having a baby, and eventually it may get donated somewhere.

Finish: Fabric Postcards

I don’t know why, but I forgot in my previous entry about swapping fabric postcards to include the name/location of the swap group. It can be found here on Livejournal. I’ve just opened up a poll there today to see when people would like to swap again, which I’m hoping will end up at the end of May (though I know one person at least is ready to do a swap pretty much immediately). The way I prefer to run the swap is a No Stress Swap, which means that everyone knows the end date in advance, makes what they want to make, and then signs up AFTER they’ve completed everything. Swap partners are arranged once sign-ups are over and that way no one gets flaked on.

Anyway, these are the postcards I mailed off in this past round.

Pennants postcard by hold your spin

Pennants postcard a photo by hold your spin on Flickr.

This was really my favourite postcard that I made. It started out with an idea one day when a co-worker was talking about looking for Buddhist prayer flags, and that got me google image searching photos of prayer flags. What I loved about the photos was the pop of colours against the bright blue sky, so I recreated that with pennants (since I don’t know enough about Buddhism to be comfortable making representations of prayer flags). It’s definitely a look that’s been done in a lot of ways – when I searched flickr, I found pillows and mini-quilts galore – but it’s just so beautiful. I frayed the edges of the pennants in hopes of making them look old and weather-beaten.

Elephants postcard
Elephants postcard a photo by clumsy chord on Flickr.

My next card was this elephant card, featuring snippets of Tip Top elephants fabric. I had this idea in mind based on the video for the Metric song Stadium Love, which features animals going head to head in combat. There was a long time between my seeing the video and making the card, so actually they haven’t really got anything to do with one another in terms of appearance, but it’s pretty cute anyway.

Another favourite, for its simplicity mainly. I was pulling apart a roll of 2.5″ strips of solids from Connecting Threads and the colours, which are possibly maybe their spring collection, reminded me of a sunrise (or a sunset) and so that’s what I set out to create.

Ticker Tape 1 postcard

*Ticker Tape 1 postcard a photo by clumsy chord on Flickr.

One of the nice things about the ticker tape style is that you can use small scraps of fabric and also scraps where the pattern doesn’t allow for a seam allowance, as with this swimming sister from the Mendocino fabric or the octopus from the same line. To set those pieces into something else, would have lost too much of the pattern, so it was great to get to use them in something like this. I didn’t take a photo of the back, but I used paper on the reverse of this card, which had stripes of colour in pink and purple, so that’s where the colour inspiration for the front of the card came from.

Ticker Tape 2 postcard

Ticker Tape 2 postcard a photo by clumsy chord on Flickr.

The back side of this ticker tape card is a paper in blue and purple, so those were the colours I used for the front. My favourite bits on this card are the Tufted Tweets chair and of course the gorgeous owl. As an experiment in the ticker tape style, I’m not sure either of these cards was completely successful, but I think it looks better when you’ve got a larger area to fill – 4 x 6-in was just not enough to get in a lot of bits and pieces in interesting patterns.

Log Cabin postcard

Log Cabin postcard a photo by clumsy chord on Flickr.

This log cabin postcard wasn’t created for the exchange, but I made it at the same time, so that I could make a video of my process of postcard making, and I also sent it away at approximately the same time.

For the video, which is embedded below, I wanted to make something pretty simple and classic, so I went with the log cabin, and I did it askew because a log cabin typically comes out square, but a postcard is rectangular, so I didn’t want to lose too much of the shape of the log cabin by cutting off the top and bottom logs. I really love this card – I think it came out beautifully.

This isn’t a terribly good video – I don’t have any way of recording myself at work, so I had to record bits talking about what I was going to do, then stop recording so that I could do it, and then show what I’d done. It’s also by no stretch of the imagination the definitive word on making fabric postcards. Its how I make them, but I’m self-taught so there are probably several other possibly better ways of going about it.

Finish: Playday Posh Tot quilt

This finished project goes allllll the way back to January 25, 2011. It was my second finished project for 2011. I want to keep a record of everything I work on/complete this year, hence this post (and a future one on a wall-hanging I made for my mom).

Posh Tot quilt in blue

This is a gift for my boss’s new baby, Ronan Quentin, who was born (early! hence the late quilt) on January 13, 2011.

The pattern is called Posh Tot and can be bought from Blue Underground Studios. It’s about 36″ x 48″ and I made it using Kona cottons in Windsor, Chartreuse, and Brown, and a Robert Kaufman print from the Playday line. I didn’t pick out any of these fantastic colours myself, I actually bought a kit from one of my favourite online fabric shops, Mad About Patchwork. (I also bought the Posh Tot pattern through her site, but the last time I checked I don’t think she had it available. Or maybe it was just the kit that’s no longer available. Hm.)

Posh Tot quilt in Blue

Here’s a more complete view of the front. I hate to be a nitpicker, but I am one when it comes to my own work, so here’s my sole nitpick about this quilt: I bought this as a quilt kit because I loved the colours, but I didn’t notice that the print chosen is too big for the size of the blocks. And because it came as a kit, there wasn’t enough fabric to fussy cut and get complete animals into the blocks. And so, my blocks are full to the brim of kangaroo and giraffe and elephant butts, without too many complete kangaroos, giraffes, or elephants.

Posh Tot quilt in Blue

Which is why I fussy cut four animals from the bits of fabric I had left. And also to dress up the back of the quilt a little bit, since that stretch of plain blue would have been… plain. I suppose I could have bought more of the Playday fabric instead for the back, but I do like the idea of a reversible quilt with some interest on either side.

It’s not particularly visible in the pictures, but I quilted it in mostly straight up/down lines on either side of the boxes about 3/4″ apart (I THOUGHT I was using 1″ painters tape, but wasn’t). Down through the boxes I did a kind of labyrinth, which was a bit of a pain to do, turning the quilt around so often.

Finish: Pink and Brown Baby Quilt

I’m calling this a finished project, even though it’s just a quilt top and hasn’t been quilted/bound, because I’m sending it off to be donated to the Linus Connection in Texas. So, you know, finished, but not finished.

This is a project that I started in the fall on 2006 when a block of the month group started up on Livejournal (Block of the Month). I was trying to do the BoM in two different versions – this one using a line of fabrics called In the Pink (plus two extra fabrics – the blue and the green are from a different line) and a second one using a purple batik with black and white prints (eventually I added a nearly solid pink and solid white to some blocks). I didn’t finish either of them.

I’ve been having an on-going freak out about having too many unfinished projects (many of which I am totally disinterested by, these days) so I pulled out a stack of shoe boxes, each of which have a different project in the, and chose these two BoMs to send away.

For this quilt top, I only had six blocks made, and it felt sort of lop-sided because I had three blocks with the green in it, two with no additional colour, and just one with blue. I decided to make two more blocks with blue so that I could try to balance it out a little.

There are a lot of things I would change, if I were to start back from the beginning, mainly to keep the same background colour on each of the blocks (two of them look like they’re floating on the background and the rest don’t) and to use more of the dark brown and less of the warm beige colour. But it’s done, and done is good.

The eight blocks on point with a 3.5-inch border is about 41-in x 58-in if I’m doing my mental math correctly. In any case, it’s not terribly big, but it should do for a little girl somewhere.

I didn’t take any pictures of the 16 blocks I sent off in the purple group. I have pictures of them, but not as a collection. I should maybe have made tops with them too, but I wasn’t sure if it would be better to make 2 smaller quilts with 8 blocks each or one larger quilt with all 16 blocks. This way the volunteers at Linus Connection can decide for themselves.