Monday, January 27, 2020

Follow Your Heart: Hampton Roads + Silicon Hills

Welcome to a new week! This is the final week of January already, I seen a post on Instagram earlier this week about how fast this year is going and I have to agree!
We are working on two blocks this week for the Follow Your Heart Quilt Along. I was able to finish both of them in a couple hours so don't worry about it taking forever.
The blocks are Hampton Roads on page 20 and Silicon Hills on page 26. These are the only two applique blocks in the quilt. If you haven't done any applique recently it is a good idea to take out some scraps, and go through steps G-J on page 21 and 22 before doing the applique on your quilt blocks. It will give you a chance to adjust your stitches until you are happy with them, as well as get the feel of turning your fabrics, where the foot should sit on your fabric to get a nice edge stitch. Make a note of which stitch you like and the width and length, so you don't forget and can use the same one on both blocks.
I did find the Silicon Hills block easier for the applique even though it has a little more, the circles are larger, and the arrows are all straight lines, so if you are nervous start with that block. I did all the applique in a light grey thread, rather than trying to match each color of my fabrics.

Hampton Roads: For the cutting I did change up a couple things. Under the dark print it says to cut a 4.5"x21" strip and cut triangles using rulers. Instead I cut one 4.5"x8.5" rectangle and two 4.5" squares. I did the same for the assorted whites. Than in step E I made my flying geese following the stitch and flip method, just like in step A of the Circle Pines block.
Also because I am using just one background fabric I cut 2 strips the size mentioned at the end of Step A rather than piecing the three smaller lengths together.
If you are worried about your fabric shrinking some during the applique, you could always cut that rectangle larger as well, do the applique, trim it to the correct size and than piece the block together.
There is a template for the circle on page 22, so you don't have to freehand one, I was flipping through the book looking for it, and all I had to do was turn the page. If you have an Accuquilt GO machine and a circle die you could definitely use that to cut your circles instead, just be sure to fuse some trans web or steam a seam to the wrong side of the fabric before cutting, so that the glue will go all the way to the outside edge of your circle.
Don't forget to add the borders as listed on page 22 to finish off the block.

Silicon Hills: This one I did as per instructions. My fabric doesn't have a huge color scale difference, so I mostly just made sure I had a lot of contrast between the circle fabric and the arrow that went on top of it. The templates for tracing are on page 28. Once again don't forget to add the borders. When we go to assemble all the blocks in a couple months you will be glad they all have borders, otherwise you will searching through the book trying to find out where you went wrong.

Have fun making these blocks!
Kayla



Thursday, January 23, 2020

What are we making?

I have some upcoming events to share with you tonight as well as a look at what some of us are working on here at the shop.
This week Saturday is Support Your Local Quilt Shop Day. You are all such wonderful supporters of our shop, but if you around on Saturday come out and say hi. We will have some yummy treats to snack on, Esther will be doing a couple demos throughout the day and there will be a draw to win a Gift Basket.
In March we will be hosting a talk by our Fabric Rep for Art Gallery. He will give a little presentation on their production and designers. As soon as we have the two session times nailed down and registration is open I will let everyone know.

Our fabric for the Vintage Housewife Quilt Along by Lori Holt has finally arrived, and Jenn was busy cutting the fabric for the kits today. Tomorrow and Saturday Carrie will work out the notions and extra little ribbons and buttons that are needed and get the kits priced. The kits should be already to go Monday morning, just in time for you to sew along. I know Esther is planning to take the first three blocks with her to Florida so she can work on it while sitting by the lake.
If you want more information on this sew along, and to download the guides and binder printouts just click this link.

Now onto what some of are busy working on.
Carrie just finished up this really cool Elephant Quilt for the shop, it is a pattern from Missouri Star. She is now working on a Backpack, almost finished a quilt top from Goldenrod, and diving into a new quilt using the Sailboat Pattern from Chelsi Stratton and Enchanted Voyage Fabrics from Maureen Cracknell.


Esther has been super busy lately. She made this tumbler from an Art Gallery Collection by Maureen Cracknell, as well as a new Penny Inn wallet for herself.
She also made a queen quilt, a fun twin, and is currently binding a cute baby quilt from Pine Hollow Lullaby which just came in.

I have been working on a gift for someone that I cant share quite yet. And I am also working on a backpack for my son who turns five in a couple weeks and is off to Kindergarten in the fall.

I am also starting a new project with the Ombre Bloom fabric. And I finished up my Hearts Table Runner for Valentines Day. 

What are you working on right now?
Kayla






Monday, January 20, 2020

Heart Quilts

Happy Monday. I love Mondays, I always feel so refreshed after a Sunday and ready to start a new week with a positive attitude.
Today I want to share some quilts that we at the shop have been working on for Valentines Day and my favorite tool for making these quilts.

Carrie made this amazing quilt. It is a pattern from Vanessa Goertzen's book: Jelly Filled. She used a jelly roll of Love Story Fabric which was designed by Maureen Cracknell for Art Gallery, and I love the blue sashing she chose. We have kits available if you would like to make one too. As well as copies of the book if you have a different color scheme in mind.
Esther made this little one from an Art Gallery Color Master Box and pattern from a book called Follow Your Heart by Terry Atkinson. We have a variety of color master bundles in the shop as well as the book, which contains the patterns for a Sampler (which I am currently doing a Quilt Along through the blog on) as well as a number of other projects using the blocks.



I made this pixelated heart quilt with a new line of fabric called Fields of Poppies. It is made with 5" squares and goes together really quickly. I hope to finish up the kits for it tomorrow if  you would like to make one.

I am currently working on a table runner as well. It is a pattern downloaded from Moda Bakeshop and uses 2.5" strips and some background fabric. I worked on it for about 30 minutes on Saturday and got everything cut as well as half of the 5 blocks pieced, so it really will not take long for me to finish it off.
In the shop we have a couple Valentines Collections available as well as a Moda Kit by Deb Strain that contains the fabric and pattern needed to make a wall hanging and table runner. The wall hanging has a panel in the center so it is a nice quick project.

As many Heart Quilts require stitch and flip corners, the Folded Corner Clipper by Creative Grids is a great tool. It eliminates the need to draw the lines on the backs of those squares, allowing you to instead trim and than sew. I use mine all the time and absolutely love it!

I was browsing through blogs the other day and came across a fun idea on Simple Simon and Company, they have a quilt designated for the moth of February and every few days someone new received the quilt, and the family had to share what they loved about that person. I think this is such a fun idea and may need to implement something similar in our house, though I would have to use just red or throw some more masculine colors in because my boys would balk at using a pink a quilt.

 Do you make quilts or table runners for Valentines Day?
Kayla

Thursday, January 16, 2020

New Fabric

So a couple weeks ago I mentioned that we were starting our year with over 20 boxes of new fabric. That Fabric is now out on the floor and I will share some photos of it with you today.
First up we have some new Art Gallery Collections.
I am loving this one called Pine Lullaby it has just a little color in the prints that you can definitely bring out stronger with solids, or make a super soft looking quilt with just the original prints. It also comes with a couple panels, one that can be cut up and made into quilt blocks, and another that is large panel with two bears hugging under the moon.
Meriweather is a collection that has me dreaming of spring. The vibrant pinks and greens mixed with some whimsical prints is just so bright and happy.
Maara is so eclectic feeling, it is such a crazy mix of prints with elephants, zebra heads, cameras, luggage all in fun colors! A couple of us at the shop are so in love with it and give a little squeal whenever we walk by it and pet our favorite ones.
Carrie is going crazy over Enchanted Voyage by Maureen Cracknell, it has soft blues, oranges and pinks and fun prints with whales, sea horses, message bottles and sail boats.
There are couple more Art Gallery Collections but you will have to check out our website or come in store to see them.
From Moda we also have several new collections. For those looking for a good blender we have the full collection of Thatched by Robin Pickens in store.
Also by Robin Pickens is Painted Meadow, this collection is so vibrant and is another one that has me just dreaming of springtime, especially with the brutally cold weather we have been having!


We also have Stiletto By Basic Grey in the store. This one is a neutral collection again with the black, greys, whites and the
addition of a great caramel color!




Deb Strain has 2 new collections in the shop. The first is Explore, perfect for those outdoorsy people.


The second is Llama Love which I am head over heels for. It is pink and aqua with Llama prints and hearts and some cacti thrown in!


We had a great meeting with Rob on Tuesday and ordered a lot of new fabric that will be arriving in the summer.

Come visit us in the shop to see more of what is new, and I will

share some pictures soon of what we are making with all these new fabrics.
Have a great weekend, mine will consist of putting a new couch in our living room and building a book case. My husband did get the dishwasher set up, and I am so thankful for it!
Kayla



Monday, January 13, 2020

Follow Your Heart: Circle Pines

It is time again for another block in our Follow Your Heart Quilt Along. This week we are making Circle Pines, which can be found on page 19 and 20 of your Book.
I loved making this block! It looks like a bunch of work at first glance but mine came together so quickly.
I followed all the cutting instructions, but used one background fabric instead of multiple in my block. Carrie used a different background for each of the four "tree" units and than 2 more for the borders.
I highly advise the Folded Corner Clipper from Creative Grids for this block. It makes those stitch and flip blocks go really quickly, and in Step B the ruler markings line up with the bottom rectangle so you know you are cutting in the right place.
Last time I asked in the Facebook Group if anyone wanted to move to 2 blocks per blog post or if we should stick to one. The answer was split pretty much down the middle, so I thought that if a block was fairly simple and quick I would combine it with another quick and simple one.
Next time we will be doing some applique and as there is only one other applique block, I am thinking we will be making both of them at once.
Tomorrow and Wednesday we have the Accuquilt Events at our shop, and we are also meeting with Rob our Moda Rep this week. Thursday evening I hope to share some photos of new fabric that has come in, and maybe a sneak peek of what we will have ordered from Rob. 
Stay warm, maybe sit under a quilt to do some binding or wrap yourself up in one and watch a good movie.
Kayla


Thursday, January 9, 2020

Moda Blockheads Round 3

There is a new Moda Quilt Along starting next week Wednesday. Moda Blockheads is gearing up for its third round. I did not follow along for the 1st round but did for the 2nd and it was so much fun. To be honest I haven't actually finished my Blockheads 2 quilt, I have the majority of it assembled but have to make 2 more blocks, maybe I need to finish it up before Wednesday. 
Anyways, this time around there are 14 Moda Designers that will be contributing patterns. 
Each Wednesday 1 new block will be released, although sometimes there may be 2 patterns. The patterns will be posted to the designers blog and  the Moda Cutting Table Blog.
Fabric requirements have not been posted yet but, there will be some options posted soon I'm sure. This quilt along is a great way to use up some of your scraps, or it can be fun to get a new fat quarter bundle and use it for this sew along.
There is no need to officially sign up anywhere for the quilt along, the patterns are free to download from the designers. There is a Facebook Group called Moda Blockheads that you can join if you wish to see others progress and share your own. 

If you do wish to join here are a couple tips to help you keep on track. 
Print out each pattern as they are released and store it in a binder, I like to put mine in page protectors in a 1" Binder that I label on the side to keep them all together and in order. 
Make the block as soon as you can so it is done. When you do make the block, make a checkmark on your pattern so you know which ones are finished just in case you miss a couple now and then.
If you do fall behind, set aside a day to catch up, and either work from the oldest to the most recent or the other way around.
Store the fabrics you are using in a tote that you can grab quickly each week, this will make it easier to take out make the block and put it back aside. Also store all your finished blocks together so they don't get misplaced during the quilt along.
Will you be joining in for the Moda Blockheads 3?
Before I wrote this post I wasn't planning on it, but after writing I probably will, and seeing as how I will be working tomorrow, it is the perfect chance to scout out a new Fat 1/4 Bundle to use.

Have a great weekend, I am hoping my new dishwasher is ready to pick up and my hubby can install it for me, I spent the majority of 2019 washing dishes by hand so I am very much looking forward to this. 
Kayla

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Finishing older projects

2020 has arrived, and with it I am sure many of you have made some resolutions. The most common ones I usually hear from quilters is that they would like to finish a number of old projects before starting anything new or making it a goal to use up some of the stash before buying new fabric. While these are great plans it easy to get stuck in a rut and avoid any quilting with set in stone plans like this, so I have a few tips to hopefully help you keep your goals but have fun doing it.
Carrie's plan for the year is to pick just one older unfinished project each month and finish it. When it is finished she can move onto whatever new quilts or bags she has found. This is a great way to finish up 12 older projects in one year without getting bogged down and overwhelmed.
Tam
my was telling me today that she plans to finish 10 projects before she starts anything new. This is a good way to clear out space and make room for some new fresh fabric and kits. And the motivation of starting a new project will keep her on her track to finish them.
I have a few different go to methods when I feel the need to bust the stash or finish old projects.
The first method is to take a week and only work on projects that are more than 1 year old. I pull out one work on it until it is finished or the week is up, I have finished multiple in the span of a week because sometimes they just need something simple like a binding sew on, borders cut and added or the blocks are all pieced they just need to be sewn together. At the end of the week I go back to my new current projects.
Another method that works really well for me is to buy a new fabric collection or kit that I absolutely fell in love, put it in my sewing space in my line of vision, and tell myself I cannot open it until I finish 3 other projects. I used this method multiple times last year and it worked really well.
The final method deals with stash busting. I like to either run a quilt along through my blog, or find one that is about to start on Social Media and use just scraps for the quilt. This goes a long ways to using up some older fabric. My aunt follows along with many of my quilt alongs, and almost always makes 2 quilts, one from her scraps, that she uses as her practice block and another from a new collection of fabric that she loved. This way she busts through old scraps but gets to use new fabric at the same time.
If you thrive on lists and crossing things off as you finish them, write down which projects you have on the go, what each needs to be completed and an order that you would like them done in, than start quil
ting and crossing things off.
I hope one of these methods will help you this year. As with all resolutions, it is best to start small and manageable than to go cold turkey. It is really important to choose numbers and set goals for yourself that will work for you and are achievable, and also to have rewards for work well done.
And if a project is really not working for you, maybe the colors are really not your style, the pattern is hard to understand or the techniques used are a little to intense, do not be afraid to call it quits. Maybe use the fabric for something else, donate the project to someone who would like it or even throw it in the trash, which to be honest sometimes feels like a weight lifted off the shoulders.
I have a few more little quilt alongs planned for the year to bust some more scraps and hope to share some organizing tips with you yet this month.
Also even though life is busy, I find that blogging once a week is not enough to share everything I want to share, so I will be going back to twice a week posts, cut switching to Monday and Thursday instead of my usual Tuesdays.
 I want to share more tips, tools and techniques with you, do some tutorials, start a few new series, show off new fabrics and share more of what we are working on behind the scenes at Chicken Feed Quilts. So I
Have a great week, and check back Thursday.
Kayla