January 23, 2016

Tim Holtz Creative Journey

I am pleased to know that my entry in the Tim Holtz Creative Journey block challenge has been selected as one of the 24 winners.  Here is my block:

I started this block by fussy cutting letters from the Eclectic Elements Stamp fabric and piecing them together.  Then I drafted a paper-piecing pattern for the balloon to fit the width of the letters.  I machine stitched the "ropes" holding the gondola, and appliqued a couple of smaller balloons.  The patterns for the smaller balloons were copied from a photograph.  I added the hills using improv curve piecing.

I really like Tim Holtz's fabric, and was excited to enter this challenge.  I used scraps from two quilts -- "Ode to Joy," and my broken star quilt (which is still a WIP).  I even borrowed the idea for the lettering from the Ode to Joy quilt.

When I chose a hot air balloon for this block, I was not intentionally thinking of the "Creative Journey" name of the challenge, but it fits.

My block will be sewn into a quilt with all the other winners, to be shown at the Spring International Quilt Market in Salt Lake City in May 2016.  If you are there, be sure to check it out.  (And I'd love to have photos!)

January 1, 2016

Double G Picnic

About the time I started my table runner project featuring Melody Miller's Picnic fabrics, we visited some friends for an Independence Day celebration.  Their red, white, and blue gingham place mats inspired a larger quilt featuring the Picnic apple prints:

The quilt construction is very simple, and it came together quickly using strip piecing, with little waste. (UPDATE: I have a tutorial for this quilt here.)

Since the quilt is so simple, I chose a simple quilting scheme as well.  I quilted straight lines a quarter inch on either side of all the seams, and added crossing diagonal lines through the center of the squares.  I marked the diagonal lines with a hera marker.

I considered using only prints from the Picnic line, without seeking too much of a transparency effect, but after playing around with some options in Photoshop, I decided to add in a few different Cotton+Steel prints.  I didn't particularly want to invite the bees to the picnic, but the color seemed just right (even if the highlights are orange and pink instead of red).

For the backing, I used the picnic basket print in blue, with some extra squares from the front.  As you can see, I did not have enough extra squares to get the width I needed, so I had to add on some scraps from another project.

The binding is Picnic Blanket in red:

We took the photos the day after Christmas at my Dad's place.  Here's an outtake:

I'll be linking up with crazy mom quilts for Finish It Up Friday.