Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Tossed Salad, Cascadia, and Sew Simplicity Blocks

Even though I have too many flimsy's in queue and ought to be quilting, I spent some time over the weekend piecing a few blocks.
First up, I had a lot of fun choosing fabrics for the November Aurifil BOM, Tossed Salad:
Visit Pat Sloan's Blog to read her interview with Scott Hansen, Aurifil's November Designer of the Month, and to download the pattern.

It was through Scott's blog, Blue Nickel Studios , that I first learned of the Aurifil BOM. Scott has an interesting and artsy aesthetic, which first attracted me to follow his blog. He embraces color, and has that genuine, down-to-earth quality I gravitate toward. Even though I follow Blue Nickel, I had not realized Scott & his wife live in the Pacific Northwest, near the foothills of the Cascade Mountains. At this point, it would be easy for me to start drawling out the homesick blues, so I will move on...
Then, last week I happened upon the Cascadia Quiltalong Mystery, led by Lori of Humble Quilts. Impulsively, I dove in and finished two of the four strips needed for this week's assignment and have the others queued up to piece as leaders and enders. Pieced with 1.5" squares, this will be a doll-size quilt. I just happened to have a lot of squares this size, so it is a win-win and I could not resist!

Last up, I finished the first block for the Sew Sweet Simplicity QAL.
I knew right away I wanted to used this hand-dyed blue from my stash. The other fabrics took me awhile to select. I am trying to cut down my decision making time lately, but it is soo hard!

I must begin FMQing again! Such a procrastinator! I rented Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett) Audio book from the library to entertain me when I sit back down with Mr. Juki. At 31 disks, it ought to help me persevere!

Linking up with BOM's Away, Building Blocks Tuesday, and Monday Makers

Friday, October 31, 2014

Eco-Friendly Ingeo Fibers

I have a finish to share, I promise!
First, look what I recently bumped in to on the Las Vegas Strip!
I've never seen this many different Singers! Unfortunately I could not stay to admire these more closely since I busy with family - I will have to return one day soon!
This is the collection of All Saints, inside the Cosmopolitan Hotel. I will be sure to take something other than my cell phone camera next time...
Well, glare or no, I thought someone may appreciate seeing these :-) Now, on to my new batting...

When I selected a quilt to finish for my goal this month, I referred to this quilt as Primarily Gingham.
As I photographed it this afternoon, it brought to mind watching cartoons on Saturday mornings. 
Tweety & Sylvester, Tasmanian Devil, Mickey Mouse, Roadrunner, & Donald Duck seem to be enjoying a fun picnic together.

Saturday Morning Cartoons, 42" square

Recently, I scored four new battings made of  100% PLA Fiber. I had not heard of it for quilting and looked it up online. Apparently it is a new type of polyester derived entirely from plants (primarily corn and potatoes). I found good reviews on Amazon for PLA comforters that are described as 'down-alternative' and decided to give it a whirl..
Basting and quilting was smooth enough. I love the result for this quilt - much more than I anticipated I would! The product I am working with is made by Eco-Craft, I am not sure if it is still available. It is not as stiff a batting as polyester, and quite low-loft.  
The result is a very light and cuddly baby quilt. The drape feels like a hand-quilted cotton. I think it is perfectly suitable batting for a warm-weather bed quilt, summer throw, or a year-round baby quilt (since they seem to layer and double-fold).
The disadvantage to this batting is the recommended care: cold water gentle wash, flat dry (no dryer or iron). It is nice to be able to beat up a baby blanket with hot water and quickdry, but avoiding the heat does make a quilt last twice as long, and I reckon a good habit for any quilt.

I have not had the chance to use Quilter's Dream Green, and now I wonder if it has a softer drape like this, or the stiff, poly-type? I will have to look into this, and hmm, maybe it is machine washable too..

It has been awhile since I linked a Friday finish! And just in the nick of time, I achieved my Lovely Year of Finishes Goal! I wish now that I had planned a spookier one. Instead, I will share one of my favorite pictures of our late cat, Mister Cat. His picture is not too spooky either, but cool anyway.


Monday, October 27, 2014

Aurifil Designer of the Month

Aurifil's October Designer of the Month is Natalia Bonner! Natalia blogs at Piece N Quilt, a site filled with modern inspiration and admirable quilting. In fact, she will be quilting the final Aurifil quilt top for their gallery!

Natalia's block is Circle of Love.
My version started with a little log cabin apple.

Read Natalia's interview and download the free pattern here. If you do stitch this up, be sure and post it to the Aurifil Flickr Group for your chance to win the monthly thread drawing!

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