Sunday, September 24, 2017

I wish you a merry ..block #5

Checking in on my progress from the "I Wish You a Merry Quilt Along"

Block #5 ---This snowman is so cute!!  Thanks Powered by Quilting  You're getting a sneek peek on the 'white' and the 'hat' fabric about to be released at market in a collection called Alpine Ice. I've got a new design coming out called Alpine Nights that will use these and more from the collection. Can't wait to share more details about it next month.

Here was Block #3 ...I don't think I blogged about it, but did post on my instagram account. Thanks to Slice of Pi Quilts.

Block #4 ...well, it is still in progress. I'm gearing up to teach at AQS Quilt Week in Des Moines, IA in another week (Oct. 4-6) I've got a lot going on at the moment. Fusing has been drawn out and I'll continue to work on it this week as I have time.

Thanks #islandbatik for these great fabrics.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Blogger's Quilt Festival - #2

Thanks Amy for giving us this platform....just had to show you one more, I love this quilt!!

I started with a 5" stamp set from Island Batik's Lake Life, added a bit of yardage from the same line, cut into 5" squares as well to fill out the outer edge.

Just wanted to show you that you can do a spiral on a long-arm! CRAZY!! But I did it! To read more about this quilt, you can check out the original post.

Enjoy more of Amy's Blogger's Quilt Festival link up party.

Blogger's Quilt Festival

You might have just been here for my Back to School with Island Batik blog hop post about this quilt, but just had to share it during the Blogger's Quilt Festival too. This new design, "Sea Bubbles" is available as a pattern on Craftsy. This features the new "Seas the Day" collection now available online and in shops.

Here is a  baby size that is adapted from my "Zoe" design using fabrics from the same collection.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you're enjoying all the inspiration during Amy's Blogger's Quilt Festival. Thanks Amy!!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Seas the Day - Island Batik - Bubbles Galore!

Welcome (back?? in case you missed my Day 1 post) to the next stop on the Island Batik - Back to School Blog Hop! We're featuring Spring and Summer 2017 collections.

Summer is winding down and the kids are back at school! It also means Fall is right around the corner (YAY.. a new seasonally appropriate design of mine about to be released)! It’s an exciting time, full of new beginnings. What’s your favorite back to school memory? Shopping for new school supplies? The smell of a fresh stack of books at your new desk? Making new friends, or even meeting your BFF? It’s simply a great time of year, and we’re going to celebrate it (even if it’s been a few years since a first day of school ;) with a blog hop!

Throughout the hop, our Ambassadors are featuring Island Batik’s newest fabrics, appearing on shop shelves as we speak! See something you like? Ask for it at your local quilt shop, or request it if you don’t yet see it. We have the most delicious collections to share with you, along with our favorite back to school memories.


I'm taking you back to where I went to high school in California on the Monterey Bay with the "Seas the Day" collection.

The motifs in this collection which include sand dollars, star fish, bubbles, rope, lobsters, anchors and a shape that could easily be surf boards!

My newest design, "Sea Bubbles", used these beautiful fabrics that reminded me of my childhood as I also grew up here. My parents taught at the school for 38 years.  So, when I think of 'school' I mostly think of this place.

Here is my new design on display at the top of the bluff

and down on the beach.

Here it is up close.

I chose to let the coloration of the fabrics that I chose migrate across the quilt on a diagonal as if the water is crashing against the sand and rolling up towards the bluff.

You may have seen my "Zoe" pattern over the years.

"Sea Bubbles" is sort of the grown up version of "Zoe".

I wanted to use fabrics from #islandbatik's Seas the Day line of fabric and make up a Zoe. Since Sea Bubbles was based on 8" finished squares, I chose to also do this Zoe version that way as well and put on small borders based on a 1/2" finished accent and then a fussy cut of the dark blue anchor fabric which when cut was about 1 5/8". The circle base was 8" and 4". If you've made Zoe, it has been a popular pattern and I have quilted many of my client's creations with it, then you get the idea of how this is made. The pattern is available as a PDF download at Craftsy.

I intended to have it done during July for our Oh! Baby! Island Batik Ambassador challenge, but I only got the top pieced that month. Glad it is now done and I can share it with you.

Here it is quilted and bound. I put a slate blue minky dots on the back.

Detailed images of the quilting. I like to let the motifs of the fabrics give me inspiration for how to quilt it. The stars were a nice size to leave unquilted and the bubbles could be any size. The anchors with simple outlining give it some texture.

Whether at the ocean or lake side ...these fabrics are so peaceful.

I'm going to share a copy of my new "Sea Bubbles" pattern to a random winner. I'm using Rafflecopter, please register and leave a comment below answering these questions:  Do you quilt more for others or for yourself? Do you prefer something simple so you can talk with friends while you're sewing or do you enjoy a challenging design that requires focus?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

There are a few extra options that will give you extra entries --see the Rafflecopter for instructions.

Loving these fabrics? I know they are available at Hancock's of Paducah..

If you're in Southern California, you might want to ask Busy Bee Quilt Shop if they have them yet.

Sea Bubbles pattern available as a PDF download or physical copy if you ask me.

Thanks for stopping by on our Back to School Blog Hop.

Other Hop Stops today featuring "Seas the Day" fabrics:
Janet -

Three bundles of fabrics from Island Batik will be given away --register at these rafflecopters for those.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, September 11, 2017

Fresh Pick'ins - Back to School Island Batik Blog Hop

Despite the REAL hurricanes going on, I hope everyone and their loved ones are safe. My in-laws are in the heat of it tonight so we're praying for their safety. Had my own bit of a hurricane just getting this project progressed, but here it is! I'll post a couple more photos later on Monday, so come back if you're interested.

My guess is that if you have school age children, they are back in school already! I saw several posts of friends with the moms all jumping for joy! HA!!

I don't have school age children, but remember my own school days well. Back in middle school --one of those years when you study the countries of South America-- I chose Peru to study. This photo is from even a few years before that (I'm on the right), but I had relatives who had served as Seventh-day Adventist missionaries there and we had received llama skin art work (hanging on the wall in the photo). I was also intrigued by the discovery of Machu Pichu while doing my research for my report. When making a food dish from the region, I made Peruvian Potatoes in Cheese. Why do I remember this so well? It called for olive oil and back in the 70's this is not something that was prevalent in our food palette for cooking so it was quite the search we went on at various grocery stores in order to obtain it. How times have changed!

This last spring my husband and I made a trip of a lifetime. We made a 4 week trip to the southern hemisphere. It all started when we were looking at 'cheap' cruises for a vacation --just us, no family, no special occasion, just vacation. We found a transitioning cruise was very affordable and there was one that was going from Santiago, Chile to San Francisco, California. It sounded fantastic!! The more we looked into it, the more excited we got about the opportunities it would create for us to see some very interesting things. One of the excursions that was organized by the cruise ship was a multi-day trip up to Machu Pichu! WHAT?  (NOT CHEAP!) YES!!!! That sounded exciting and 'safe' since the cruise ship organized it all to get us back at another port several days later. In order to use miles to fly to the ship, we had to go a few days early. Hmm, so what to do with our extra time? We could explore Santiago or we could fly to Easter Island! WHAT??? (NOT CHEAP) Yes, we did just that.

So much for a cheap vacation, but we decided to take advantage of some huge opportunities that would be much more costly if we weren't going to be in the southern hemisphere in the first place.

Upon arrival to Easter Island we were greeted with these 'leaf' leis.

It is still a fairly primitive island. We stayed at a small hostel type accommodation with no air conditioning. But the sea breezes were fantastic. This was the view across the road from where we stayed.

Look at the different blues in this shot. I was amazed at the reflection of the clouds on the water.

Easter Island -- at sunrise

After our visit to Easter Island we flew back to Santiago and missed the earthquake as it happened before we landed. I am sure I felt an aftershock though while in our hotel that night. The next morning is when we learned that there had even been an earthquake and several aftershocks the night before. Again--reminded me of growing up in California. Yes, I've been through several earthquakes.

After boarding our ship we proceeded north along the South American coast. Before leaving the coast of Chile, we flew on a chartered plane to Cusco, Peru. Our itinerary was to stay two nights in Cusco with the trip up to Machu Pichu happening on the day in between. Through the good parts of social media I learned that a friend of mine was starting to hike the Inca Trail and was in town as well. Although I didn't get to see him, and learned later there was another gal on the trip that I also knew from another part of my life...such a small world, but in some way we're all connected. 

Our trip to Machu Pichu included a van ride, then a train ride, then a bus up to the ruins. We got to hike around for about 2 1/2 hours with our guide. I'm very grateful we had a local Inca Trail guide with us. He used to hike the trail, but now was doing the organized group tours directly to M.P.

On the train, the table covers were woven with beautiful designs. My immediate thought--these could easily be adapted as a quilt design.

Hanging in the market were many more:

Even the frame around the mirror in our hotel inspired me!

 We finally made it to Machu Pichu!!

So, today I'm sharing a design that is taking me back to my middle school years, the 'bucket' list item of seeing Machu Pichu and using some of the inspiration I took from the experience.

I recently used bosal fusible foam to do a quilt as you go project. I also have tried the placemats that Poorhouse Quilt Designs put together called "Inside Out Mats'  (right using Wilmington Prints - Poppy Celebration available in my shop). The biggest pain point for me in making placemats in a traditional way with a binding, is that I may often make quite a few and then I have to bind EVERY ONE OF THEM! The 'Inside Out Mat' design keeps it simple and fairly quick.

The center fabric of the 'front' though could be made as a special block and then the 'bordering/binding' technique employed around it. So, using Bosal fusible foam (I have available by the yard if you're interested, so you can make whatever size or shape you'd like!) and all of this inspiration seen in Peru, here is what I came up with:

A set of 8 placemats that will always remind me of our trip to Machu Pichu! and since each is unique, I could easily add more as I need.

The vibrant colors of  #islandbatik's Fresh Pick'ins collection were perfect for this.  When I received the collection back in February and knew it was slated for September's project, I set it aside and said to myself, I want to be inspired by my southern hemisphere trip before I commit to any particular design direction with these fabrics. It just seemed perfect. Below you see lots of tone on tone in the background; in the middle are several multi-color pieces and in the foreground are several blenders that go great with the collection.

 Here are the beautiful spools of #Aurifil and #SuperiorThreads we received in our first box of 2017. I'll be using the Superior green for the top stitching in the ditch of the flange and a multi-color received previously for the back stitching.

The flange is the light green dots and the border is the dark green cherries.

I used these four as the backings.

I also added some neutrals in the background of black (Charcoal - BE24-E2) and white (Milk Shake) to give me the contrasts needed.

Cutting per placemat:
Bosal fusible foam and backing - 14" x 20" --this is a generous sized placemat, but uses the fusible foam efficiently when cutting it from the bolt.
flanges  (2) 1" x 13" and (2) 1" x 19" --yes 1" shorter
borders (2) 3" x 13" and (2) 3" x 19" --yes 1" shorter
The flanges and borders could be cut a bit shorter, just make sure they get all the way to the bottom corner that you want them to hit (notice that the borders are interlocking). It is a partial seam to start and then finish it up when you come around to it again.

I mostly design with EQ7, so worked a bit backwards from the Poorhouse placemat design to get my block size and then drew the designs so the elements weren't individually too small relative to the size of the block.

In the end I wanted the blocks to finish about 8" x 14" for the 'special center block' so went for making sure it had sufficient background that made it about 10" x 16" so I didn't cover the design but the border/flange for sure caught the block edge.

I used this crochet hook to push the points out at the corners.

I used Superior Threads Masterpiece (right spool) for the ditch work at the flange and Fantastico in the bobbin (middle spool) and Fantastico (left spool) for the top stitch at the outer edge, but kept the same (middle spool) bobbin.

These could easily be made into a runner or wall hanging, but I decided I would actually use the placemats most.

Hope you enjoyed this inspiration of Fresh Pick'ins fabric. Several online options are already offering the pre-cuts and yardage. Just google : Island Batik Fresh Pick.

G I V E A W A Y--did you say Giveaway? I've got the equivalent of  2.5" strips of the Fresh Pick'ins line to send to you.

If we get over 100 people entered, I'll put together another bundle of strips that will include most of the line, and select another random winner, so please share this and encourage others to enter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Comment entries include questions
  - would you like these blocks made into a pattern?
  - have you used grade school inspiration for anything?

There are several 'group' giveaways that Island Batik will also be awarding. Use this Rafflecopter to register.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for stopping by! #backtoschoolwithisland

I'm posting again on September 18. Don't miss the entire hop by checking out the complete schedule.