Friday, January 12, 2018

Working With Wool is Snow Much Fun!

I have discovered that working with wool is so much fun! As promised I have this month's block to show you all done in wool. I have been collecting wool here and there over the last couple of years. Many of you have heard me whine about my wonky stitches. Well I have learned that you can machine applique wool! Now this is a game changer for me. I don't know why I haven't discovered this sooner! I'm an instant gratification type of girl so machine appliqueing with wool is soooo awesome! Now don't get me wrong, I do love hand stitching... but I don't always have the time. For me to get a ka-zillion things done design wise and for market I need to speed up the process a bit. I'm in love with the thought of being able to machine applique wool blocks in an afternoon instead of taking days to get around to it. I am in awe with the purists out there that stitch by hand. I wish I had more time to be one of you.... but sometimes a quilter needs a little extra help. That would be me.... one of those people....
I am using 12wt Lana Wool thread from Aurifil. (color - 8087 brown) I'm using a regular 50wt in my bobbin thread. I'm using a 75/11 needle...
This thread is a total game changer for me...

I first tested out stitching by making this little sample bumblebee.
I wasn't really sure if my machine would like to stitch with this... so before stitching this month's block I wanted to make sure my machine wouldn't choke and upchuck with stitching. Lucy, has been known to be very finicky...

To begin with, I've traced all of my applique pieces onto freezer paper. (The shiny side is on the back)

I then iron on the freezer paper onto my wool pieces, (shiny side down) grouping together items that will be using the same color. I then cut all the pieces out. I peel the wax paper off before placing it on my background fabric.

I'm using a larger blanket stitch then I would normally use for machine applique. Play around with it on some scrap fabric and wool and see what you prefer. I like a 3.5 width and a 3 length.

Here I am stitching the tree in place.

I have been positioning my wool pieces onto my block following the placement on the pattern. I haven't been gluing them in place or anything. I've been just pinning my sections in place, layering as I go. It's a little different then using heat n bond. This method is working for me... I stich slowly. Machine stitching slowly goes a whole lot faster then stitching by hand. LOL

~Bird Watching Snowmen~



For this version of the quilt, I am using Primo Plaid flannels from Marcus Fabrics and for the applique pieces, I am rummaging thru my wool stash.  To finish this cute design, I embellished my square with some special buttons from Just Another Button Company. I do have these buttons available in my Etsy Shop. Pattern can be found on the Quilt Doodle Designs Website. It's a Free download this month only.  I will not be sewing my buttons onto my quilt top until after I have it all done and quilted.This BOM will be offered the first of every month. Like always, it's FREE for the month that the block is out, then there's a small fee if you have to play catch up to get the block. To make sure that you don't miss any of it,  join my mailing list. Not only will you get all of the BOM 2018 postings and updates, but you will also hear about all sorts of other fun quilty goodness too!

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Happy Quilting!
Cindy and Belvedere


If you would like to post this image on your website or blog to spread the word. Please grab the image above and link it to my blog.



Saturday, January 6, 2018

Minnesota Winter Wonderland Quilt Along!!!

Minnesota Winter Wonderland QAL!

 
I thought it would be fun to do a little QAL this year. Don't get it confused with the BOM I'm doing. That's a whole other quilt. You can follow along with both and have two quilts done by the end of the year! When deciding what quilt to use for a QAL, Minnesota Winter Wonderland came to mind first. It's one of my favorite winter themed quilts. Many of you know, I live in Minnesota and it's winter here nine months out of the year, and Belvedere and I have decided to hibernate this winter and just hang out together in the studio as I sew. I also know that many of you are experiencing colder than usual weather too! Even in Florida!  So the first section we are going to do is a row of 'Chilly Silly Snowmen' which is the January section of the Minnesota Winter Wonderland pattern..... These snowmen are so stinkin cute, and easy to sew together. Everything is based on 2 1/2" squares and strips. The snowman noses are appliqued, but don't worry, if you are a beginner to applique, you can do these. The complete pattern can be found Etsy and also on Quilt Doodle Website. It's available as a PDF instant download and also as a packaged pattern. It's written so it can be done as a BOM. So it'll be easy to follow along month to month. So lets get started.... You will need the following fabric colors... blue (I'm using a darker blue fabric), cream/white, and orange (for the snowman noses). You will also need some Heat n Bond and brown or black thread for machine applique. I like to use dark brown.
Many of you have wondered what fabrics.... here's what I pulled
from my fabric stash. Notice most of it is tone on tone. You can have a lot of fun with this quilt and experiment with many shades of blue and make it very scrappy. I've seen this quilt done scrappy and it turns out super cute!!!

Following the pattern directions, I cut 2 1/2" squares
and 2 1/2" x 10 1/2" strips.

Layer a cream/white 2 1/2" square and a blue 2 1/2" square
right sides together and sew corner to corner. Repeat until you have
7 sets of 4.

Trim the excess leaving a 1/4" seam...

Iron, seam to the dark side....

Lay out your squares to form the snowman block.

Sew block together using a scant 1/4" seam.

Here is a snowman block next to the 2 1/2" x 10 1/2" strip...
Sew a strip to each section..

Sew the sections together making sure the long snowman
strip begins and ends with a 2 1/2" x 10 1/2" strip.

Trace 7 snowman noses onto the heat n bond and then
iron onto the wrong side of the orange fabric.
Cut the noses out

Your snowman noses can go all the same way...

Or willy nilly ~ every direction... iron them on.

I applique around the nose using my machines button hole stitch
using brown thread.
 Snowman eyes.... hmmmmm...
you can sew on buttons, beads or embroider them using french knots.
It's up to you and what you prefer to do.

I think I'm going to use buttons...


Chilly Silly Snowmen ~ January's Block

 If you blog about it this QAL, please email me a link so that I can attach it to the Pinterest Board I have going for the Minnesota Winter Wonderland QAL. I hope you have fun with this section of the quilt. It can easily be done in a weekend. I'm looking forward to seeing everyone's snowmen! We will work on the next section of the quilt on February 10th. Hope that you join in on the fun!!!

Happy Quilting,
Cindy and Belvedere


Sunday, December 31, 2017

Let's Begin the 2018 BOM!

January is finally here! Happy New year everyone! I am looking forward to showing you the first block to kick off the beginning of this year's BOM. But first there's a little prep work to do. If you haven't picked out your fabric yet, go run and raid your stash or run to your local quilt shop for some yummy flannels... if it's like sub-zero temperatures like it is here. With just a few clicks in my Etsy Shop, I will ship you a fabric kit for this years quilt. The info and links can be found below. I personally have decided to hibernate like a bear and stay home. (Luckily the post office comes to me, I don't have to go out in this ridiculously cold weather) I have decided I am not going outside until the temperature is above my age. I am hibernating like a bear....

If you want to go raid your stash or run to the fabric store to gather your fabrics... then here is what you're going to need.....
2 yards Green- border and cornerstone blocks
1 1/2 yards red- sashing
1 1/2 yards cream- block backgrounds
9 fat quarters in the following colors- black, rust, brown, medium green, gold/yellow, medium gold, medium blue, dark blue and dark gray (These colors are used for the quilt blocks. Any left over fabric is used for the applique)
1 fat quarter white/cream for the snowman
1 fat quarter light blue to use for appliqueing

This quilt would also be pretty done all in blues too.... or reds.... have fun with it!
Once you have all your fabrics collected... go to my website and print up this month's directions. Then grab yourself something warm to drink and your rulers and rotary cutter. It's time to do some prep work. It will make the following month's sewing a breeze! Today you will be cutting your nine fat quarters into squares and labeling and setting these pieces aside. You will also be cutting fabric to make four snowball blocks. These blocks will be used for the January thru April applique designs. So let's get started.... First go to my website and download this month's free directions. Remember it's only FREE this month, then there will be a small 1.99 fee after that. So download and print it up NOW even if you don't expect to get to it yet.
To begin with, following the cutting directions for the nine fat quarters, I cut out the squares as directed and put my scraps in a bin. The scraps will be used for the applique designs. Label the various sized squares and put them aside, you will use them down the road.
Then following the Snowball Block directions, cut out your pieces out of dark green border fabric and your cream background fabric.

Here I am cutting my 5 1/2" blocks in half diagonally.

Pair together 1 cream triangle and 1 green triangle and sew a scant ¼” seam along the diagonal edge. Iron. Make a total of 4 triangle square blocks.

Following the Snowball block diagram sew the triangle blocks onto the 5 ¼” cream blocks to make a triangle block, 5 ¼” block, triangle block strip. (Make two)  Then sew the triangle block strips to the 5 ¼” x 14 ½” cream rectangle following the Snowball block diagram.

Make a total of 4 snowball blocks. You will only use one block this month and save the other blocks for the February, March, and April blocks.
 Following the instructions provided by the fusible web manufacturer, trace 1 set of the snowman design  pieces grouping together pieces that will be using the same fabric.    Cut pieces out. 

 Follow the pattern placement sheet, center on cream color block background. Iron in place.

 Using a blanket, zig zag or satin stitch on your sewing machine; sew along the edges of all the pieces.

Referring to the  picture Embroider the snowman’s arms. Using French knots and black pearl cotton, embroider the snowman’s eyes and smile.

Bird Watching Snowmen


To finish this cute design, I embellished my square with some special buttons from Just Another Button Company. I do have these buttons available in my Etsy Shop. Pattern can be found on the Quilt Doodle Designs Website. It's a Free download this month only.  I will not be sewing my buttons onto my quilt top until after I have it all done and quilted. I will also be offering some extra postings for you wool workers out there too! This BOM will be offered the first of every month. Like always, it's FREE for the month that the block is out, then there's a small fee if you have to play catch up to get the block. To make sure that you don't miss any of it,  join my mailing list. Not only will you get all of the BOM 2018 postings and updates, but you will also hear about all sorts of other fun quilty goodness too!

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Happy Quilting!
Cindy

If you would like to post this image on your website or blog to spread the word. Please grab the image above and link it to my blog.


Fabric kits are available in my Etsy shop for the 2018 Snow Much Fun BOM! The kit includes your border and block fabrics. This year's quilt is a flannel quilt that will be super warm and cozy when it's finished. I am also working with Just Another Button Company for some adorable buttons to embellish your quilt with. These buttons will also be available each month in my Etsy shop.


These are the colors that are in the fabric kit available in the Quilt Doodle Etsy shop.

Please note that substitutions may be made when some fabrics 'run out' but the substitutions will be equally as cute! Fabric kit does not include backing or binding



Finished quilt measures 60" x 72"

Sunday, December 17, 2017

UFO Success!

  I'm happy to announce I got one of my UFO's done! Woot! Woot! Happy dance!!!! I am thrilled that I finally completed my Confetti quilt. It's actually project that I'm writing a pattern for and have sent the pattern to my testers. Testers got their quilts all done,  but do you think I could get my quilt done and quilted. Other projects kept taking priority over this one. This quilt was fun to do and I was stuck on putting on borders and getting it quilted! Well, I took some time and went to my mom's, to work on it. Sometimes this is the only way I can get anything done is to go to my mom's and quilt with her. It's also a lot of fun to hang out with mom...
I love using the laser light on my mom's machine, it makes quilting straight lines so easy.

I also use a ruler to make sure to square up my quilted lines as I start a new 'row'.

I'm using an even feed foot to quilt. Quilting 'lines' using an even feed foot helps quilt your quilt in a jiffy! It's a great time saver if your under a time crunch.

~ Quick Confetti Quilt ~
Do you want to join me with my UFO challenge? Well here's what you need to do... Print up the handy dandy UFO sheet I have made for you. (It can be found on my website under my Quilting Fun Tab on the  Quilt Doodle Website. (Click on the 'My List of UFO's' next to the UFO graphic and then you can print off your UFO sheet to fill in.) Then fill in the spaces with six of your UFO's. Grab a dice and roll it..... then that's the project you get to work on for the next month! It's a great idea! I'll post again January around the 15th or so.... I'm not sure if I'll get much done with the holidays and all. So since I got a project done,  I get to roll the dice again...... shake, shake, shake-a-dee, shake........ I got a 6... oh my...... the snowball quilt. I started this project a few years ago at retreat. It's a quilt I want to make my for my younger son.... Ever follow a pattern thinking it would turn out bigger? I had picked up the fabric and pattern during Minnesota shop hop, many, many years ago..... Fell in love with the shop sample made the quilt following the little tiny pattern card I had only to find out when I completed it that the shop sample must have increase the pattern by four.... My winter in Minnesota quilt top was about the size of a tiny crib quilt. Ack! So it's been a UFO ever since. It's time for me to make it bigger so I can finish it for Thomas.


Let me know in the comments if you got a project done. I will celebrate your success with a virtual happy dance! Belvedere will probably do his best 'Ro- ro- rooooooo' for you too!

Have a great day stitching,
Cindy

Pssst... the Quick Confetti Quilt Pattern can be found on my website as an instant PDF download....