A Lovely Year of Finishes – October Goal (+ TTMT)

So I chose a really easy goal in September, which means I think I should pick something a little more complex this month! And I’m really hoping I’ll get it done because if I do, then my Christmas gift for my mom will be entirely taken care of. I talked about this a bit back in the winter when I was working on piecing the top, but I played pretty coy with it because I kept hoping I’d get it finished really quickly, and I wanted to be like “Woo look what I made!” without beating the whole thing to death before hand like I usually do. But the last photo I took was in February, so clearly that getting it finished quickly thing didn’t pan out. In fact, let’s look at my January ALYOF goal:

January goals

And then I went on to talk about how I wanted to give this to my mom for her birthday (early in February) but that they probably wouldn’t come to visit until late that month. Hahahahaha. February.

Okay, well, continuing to play coy with the look of the entire quilt, this is my goal for October: to get the Confetti Go Lucky quilt basted and quilted and bound. Soon would be good (because I want to get two charity quilts done this month too, if possible).

October A Lovely Year of Finishes goal

And finally, another Talk to Me Tuesday video. I’ll get around to writing about these cushion covers one day soon… (the light’s just gone really early, so I keep putting off photo taking till after dinner, but by then it’s too late).

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WIP Wednesday: Little Things

Naturally because I have a bit of a goal list for the month, I’ve so far only worked on completely different things. Two of them totally new!

The simplest thing on my ginormous To-Do list was to add borders to two finished baby sized tops and send them away for a Linus group to quilt and gift to a child in need. I even had the borders cut.

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Sure, the lighting is horrible. But so are the borders! I don’t hate all borders on sight (like some capital-m Modern Quilters seem to), but there’s a time and a place for all things, and these two quilts were not the place for borders, apparently.

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Thing was, they weren’t very square and if you have a not-very-square quilt, adding properly sized borders can really help fix a multitude of sins. But they’re just so awful looking! I couldn’t decide if I should take them off or leave them on, and I left them in the end. I figure if the Linus group that gets them really hates them as much as me, they can trim off 2.25″ width to use as binding fabric (and be left with a skinnier border, that maybe wouldn’t look so bad?) or they can rip them off entirely or they can leave them on because maybe some kid somewhere will appreciate it anyway.

Anyway, after I got that done, I went digging through my drawers looking for a needle. I can’t remember what got me looking for one – I don’t think I had anything that needed hand-sewing – but I did and then I found a little embroidery project that I bought a while ago and never got around to making:

Mr Monkey Man

An embroidered monkey stuffie from Kiriki Press. They sell a sweet little collection of embroidered stuffie kits. This is one of the simplest ones – you only need to know chain stitch and running or back stitch to do the embroidery. I picked it up because I thought it was cute and because Kiriki is an independant Canadian company (and I want to support Canadian talent) and did I mention it’s cute? I’ve only been working on it a little here and there while watching tv, but then I haven’t watched anything in a few days now, so I’ve set him aside again. I’m determined to finish him this month, though, so to that end, I’m going to link up to &Stitches January finish-along. I have lots of other embroidery projects I could try to finish instead, but I’m feeling this one instead.

Potholders in Progress

I’m also working on some pot-holders out of that Christmas fabric I mentioned a couple days ago. I started out following a pot holder/hot pad tutorial, but I got distracted somewhere along the line and sort of did my own thing and then I thought how very boring it was (just this floral fabric on the front/heat reflective side, all that brown background fabric on the back side) so my brain went back to that original tutorial and thought I’d better add some kind of embellishment to break up the front a little.

So today I headed over to Fabricland and picked up a half metre each of those two crochet lace edgings – grand total of $1.13 – to test against the fabric. Neither matches quite exactly – in brighter lighting, the white is a much purer white than the fabric, which is a creamy yellow-based white and the beige is much too dark. (The beige does match the twill tape loops quite well.) But I have enough to do four hot pads, so I think I might just do two with the white and two with the beige and be done with it whether they match precisely or not.

So that’s what I’m working on! And then I need to get working on my bee blocks and some cat-faces…

Wonky Star Quilt

I have a new finished project and I guess I should really talk about it! Like the quilts in my last post, this particular project is being donated to The Linus Connection in Austin, Texas. Which is miles away from me – I’m in Calgary, Alberta – but after the fires and the drought and heat wave in Texas, there is a lot of need for blankets to help comfort children in need, more even than usual. And of course, the lovely ofenjen is one of their members and a friend of mine, and I’m always happy to help out with this charity that means so much to her.

Wonky Star

So this is just kind of a teaser shot, I suppose, showing the basic blocks that make up the quilt. Ofenjen is collecting paper-pieced star blocks to put together into quilt tops, but I guess I was feeling contrary, because I decided I wanted to make something a little more free-form. And then because I knew I wasn’t going to be making the same star block as everyone else, I thought I’d better make enough for an entire quilt top. I had an awful lot of purple solids (leftovers from a quilt that I’ve got cut out, but have never got around to putting together), so I went into my collection of purple fabrics and pulled out one of my favourite pieces, a poppy print from Alexander Henry’s Good Earth collection.

Wonky Star

I loved that print from the moment I first saw it, and it took me a while to source a piece of it because I think I must have come across it after it went out of print. I often buy fabric with a plan in mind (I just never finish anything…), but this was something I never had ideas about. I just loved it, so I had to have it. The lighter, pinker purple in the poppies was an almost exact match to one of the solid Kona cottons I had, so it seemed to be a great match. And I even liked how it looked with the more berry-toned purples, as well as a pale lavender and even a pale pink.

I had high hopes of making 12 blocks and then putting a single border around it, using more of the AH print, but alas, I didn’t have enough purple (or pink, which I used to help bump up the number of blocks) without using a couple of much darker purples that I didn’t think would work as well for backgrounds, so I settled on making eight and then put the lot on point.

Wonky Star quilt

And I think it looks better for it! Somehow the stars seem to sparkle more on point. And I love the way the different background colours pull your eye around. Sometimes putting things on point gives me a bit of mental trouble because I worry about all the bias cuts on the setting triangles pulling everything out of whack, but this is the second time I’ve done it this year (see the first here, also donated to The Linus Connection) and I’ve liked the results both times.

I usually have a laundry list of nit-picks about the things I make, but this one I only have two small quibbles and neither of them bother me terribly much. I’m not the biggest fan of the purple print I used for the setting triangles, but alas, it was all I had in my stash that was big enough and didn’t look terrible. I think it’s not got quite the right base-note, so to speak, to match the border print – it’s a little more berry and a little less indigo maybe? – but I’ve also sent along enough strips (I think!) to bind the quilt, which I’m hoping will help tie it in a little better to have that extra little frame of it. My second nit-pick is that I didn’t get the print pointing the right direction on the bottom two setting triangles. Really minor problem, and I could have fixed it, but I wasn’t sure I had enough fabric to include binding strips if I cut out extra triangles just to solve the directionality problem.

In any case, it’s another finished quilt top. Not a large one, it’s about 45″ x 62″, I think, but I really hope some child will love it.