Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Embroidery Blocks Questions

I have a sister in law who also happens to be a First Class Grandmother.  She has asked me for some help constructing a quilt for her grandson.  This little guy is a John Deere fan and she has embroidered twelve tractors for the quilt.
Each block is 18" square.  I have never included embroidered blocks into a quilt before.  I'd love to get your thoughts on these questions:

  1. I plan on pre-washing the blocks and all the quilting fabric (as you can see I have started to acquire John Deere fabric) as the embroidered blocks are a light cotton fabric.  I am afraid this will shrink and potentially misshape the tractors.  Is there anything I can do about that?
  2. I will need to do some quilting within the 18" block as the maximum stitching distance on batting I can find is 8 to 10" (and that is on the cotton I normally use).  Any suggestions as to how I can quilt the embroidered blocks without messing up all the hard work she put into the embroidery?
  3. Any other cautions or advice for incorporating large embroidered blocks into a quilt?

Thanks so very much!!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Finished - Vintage Sampler Quilt

At the risk of boring my regular readers, I am submitting this quilt into the Bloggers Quilt Festival.  What can I say, I love this quilt.

It's been a big week for our family.  Our oldest son and his wife purchased their first home.  It is the perfect house for this modern couple.  An 1830's house with a large barn on Main Street in a small New England town.  And have I told you before that my daughter in law is a historical preservation consultant?
 Of course I needed to make them a quilt for this occasion.  I searched my Pinterest pins, quilting magazines, blogs and books for the perfect quilt.  And I think I found it.  Vintage Quilt Revival is a beautiful book with 20 classic blocks created in a modern style.  Further, I love making sampler quilts and when I read that sampler quilts became popular in the 1830's, that sealed the deal!  I had a plan.

Deciding on the fabric was the next challenge.  Flea Market Fancy was my inspiration fabric.  To me this line is the perfect modern take on traditional style fabrics.  I combined FMF with other bright and happy fabrics from my stash.

Many of these blocks are foundation pieced.  This was my first experience with paper piecing where the pattern authors provided the size of the fabric to cut as compared to my just estimating the proper shape and size for each piece.  The alignment of pieces was much easier and scrap was a minimum, not to mention the precise piecing results.
(Full disclosure:  not all the points are this perfect but many are!)

There are some gorgeous blocks in this quilt.  I cannot decide which is my favorite!

20 classic blocks and 30 spacing blocks later, it was time to baste.  This is the largest quilt I have basted (72" by 90") using the table basting approach.  So much better than crawling around on the floor.

For the backing, I found this modern paisley print (again mixing a new and old element).

I like to add a little something special to each quilt.  This is the house they purchased:

This is the house block I put on the back (or a modern interpretation of an 1830's Victorian!).
I sketched out the house on graph paper, cut out all the pieces, added a 1/4" and pieced it all back together. 
Piecing this block into the back gave me an opportunity to practice matching patterns.  Glad I slightly over-purchased fabric for the backing to account for the large repeat of the pattern!
Faith Jones made this quilt for the book and if an allover meander was good enough for her, well for sure it was OK with me.  I am not a stippling fan (actually trickier than it looks) but I do love the texture this quilting pattern creates.

A short debate with my husband about binding colors later, two nights of movie watching and the binding was sewn on.

Finally, a label for historical purposes.

I couldn't be happier for this very special couple.   Sorry for the long post but I hope this explains the couple of weeks of silence on the blog!

Linking up with Amanda Jean's finish it up Friday linky party!  And acknowledging my tardiness, I am linking up with the Vintage Quilt Revival Quilt Along.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

WIP Wednesday Another Sneak Peek

Rest assured (Tracy), my sewing machine has been busy!  Here are a few more blocks in my current super-secret project:
I have some experimenting (over thinking?) going on with this project.
I promise to have a long finish post to share with you soon!!

In other exciting news, the wonderful high energy Val at Val's Quilting Studio highlighted one of my quilts this week! She has a fun linky party on Tuesdays that gives us a chance to link up past blog posts.  How lovely that she remembered my quilt post from February to be highlighted (but that is Val!).
Val's Quilting Studio

I hope everyone is having a good week!  Summer time is in full swing and I have lots of plans to spend time with family and friends...and my sewing machine.

Linking up with Lorna's Let's Bee Social and Lee's WIP Wednesday parties!
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