Evening in the Garden Quilts

Adventures in Fabric Art

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Sunday Stash Report: 8/28/16

IMG_2745My only finish this week was Birds in the Air, but I didn’t buy any new fabric!  Thank you for the positive comments!  I can’t count most of the front, because the blocks came from other people’s stashes, but the back, solid blocks, and binding uses about 4.5 yards.

This week:  + 0 yards,  – 4.5 yards
This year: + 77.25 yards,  – 114.5 yards
Net destashed in 2016:  37.25 yards

I’m creeping up on fifty yards!

Jaye asked if I really found joy in the things I was making, like the leaf wall hangings, or if I did it to use fabric.  Yes, there’s always joy, or I wouldn’t do it.  I just report the fabric usage on Sundays.

I relish handling fabric and playing with color.  Sometimes a project begins with a need (in this case, a hole in my Etsy shop), or a desire to use a particular category of scraps, but it always ends up as a challenge to make something as beautiful as I can.  In the case of the wall hangings, I wanted to do them quickly so I used a single, previous design.  All the same, I’m very pleased with the fabrics I put together and thoroughly enjoyed the quick project and its results.

I also keep in mind Sandy’s injunction against ugly donation quilts.  Yes, I often use fabrics that haven’t found a home in previous projects, but I hope I do something attractive with them.  I never want to give someone a quilt that looks like Yuri’s breakfast.

And I want to continue to use as much as possible from my stash, so that I’ll feel good about replacing some of it with fresh, new fabrics!

I’m linking up to Sunday Stash at Patchwork Times.


Twilters’ Birds in the Air Finished

IMG_2744A few months back the Twilters, of Twitter and Facebook fame, exchanged blocks in honor of our friend Frances O’Roark Dowell’s new novel, Birds in the Air, to be published in September.  I sent off forty eight-inch blocks, received thirty-nine different ones back (one went to Frances), added four of my own and some citron batik to make this quilt.  (Thank you, Tina, for coordinating all of this!)  These blocks are from all over the US and several other countries.

IMG_2744bThere was a question recently about whether we quilt in the ditch between patches.  It depends, but I certainly did on this one!  I used my walking foot and worked my way across both diagonals, then vertically and horizontally until all the “birds” were outlined.  I also created some “faux birds” where I wanted them in some of the white areas.

IMG_2745Then I switched to my free-motion foot to work inside all of the triangles.  The colorful birds got a curve on all three sides (orange peel?), while the background triangles got a figure eight design.  It was my first time using this, so they were mostly figure eights, with the occasional one that turned out more like ribbon candy!

Finally, I put feathers in the center and the other open areas.

IMG_2747I bound this with strips left from the blocks I sent and some of the left over binding from the Orlando Pulse quilt.  The back is just the scribbly batik.  The large label has all the contributers names printed on Quick Fuse printer fabric, because, even though each block is signed, some of the pens used aren’t completely colorfast in the wash, and I always want to remember you ladies!


Thank you, everyone, for your contributions to this pretty quilt!


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Sunday Stash Report: 8/21/16

I worked all week on the Birds in the Air quilt, and it’s nearly finished, but still needs the binding.  I used half a yard of ugly not favorite fabric for plants ties, and didn’t buy any fabric.

This week:  + 0 yards,  – .5 yards
This year: + 77.25 yards,  – 110.0 yards
Net destashed in 2016:  32.75 yards

How are you doing?  I’m linking up to Judy’s Sunday Stash at Patchwork Times.

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Sunday Stash Report: 8/14/16

wp-image-1542581575jpg.jpgThis week I didn’t buy any fabric, and I did use a little.  The fall wall hangings to0k a yard and a half, and I used a quarter yard for tying up the peppers in the garden.

This week:  + 0 yards,  – 1.75 yards
This year: + 77.25 yards,  – 109.50 yards
Net destashed in 2016:  32.25 yards

So I’m inching closer to my goal of destashing fifty yards this year.  How are you doing?

I’m linking up to Sunday Stash at Patchwork Times.

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Sunday Stash Report: 8/7/16

I didn’t buy fabric this week!  And I used a yard and a half to make Kat’s blocks, and three and a half for the Force Awakens baby quilt.

This week:  + 0 yards,  – 5 yards
This year: + 77.25 yards,  – 107.75 yards
Net destashed in 2016:  30.50 yards

Onward to fifty yards!

I’m linking up to the Stash Report at Patchwork Times.

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Force Awakens Quilt Finish

IMG_2717Today I finished the little Star Wars quilt I worked on this week.  It evolved a lot since my first concept, but I like the way it turned out.  And I have a lot of left over fabric that I cut along the way, so there will be a sequel.  I wrote a tutorial on inserting the orange strips into existing blocks.

IMG_2719The back is a blue geometric, a band of of orange Fairy Frost, and a section of gray moonscape.

IMG_2716I quilted it in a six” grid with gray Bottom Line.  Then I used NiteLite Extra Glow thread (Superior) to quilt diagonal lines in the direction of the green streaks in the fabric.  I did both a long straight stitch, and #44, a “hand quilting” stitch.  This would take some tweaking to really look like hand quilting, but the forward and back stitching put down lots of thread to enhance the glowing effect.  I used this is a quilt I made my son long ago, so I know it last through years of use and washing.

Batting is Warm and Plush.  35″ x 41″


Of course, Yuri snuggle tested it, and it passed.


Coming soon to an Etsy shop near you.

I reworked some of the blocks in the Star Wars baby quilt, and here is the finished top.  I inserted strips of orange Fairy Frost into some of the silver blocks, and I think it gives it some pop.

Let me begin by telling you not to make your blocks this way.  The best way to do it is to plan ahead and cut your blocks over-sized, then trim them after you’re finished.  I didn’t do that.  My blocks were already cut 6 1/2″ square, and I had limited fabric to remake them.  So I used the ones it had, sewed them carefully, and they worked.

After slashing your block on the diagonal, sew your insert strip to the largest piece of your block, right sides together.  My strip is 1″ wide, so that it finishes at 1/2″.

Press the seam toward the insert.  

Place the remaining piece on top of the block, right sides together, matching the corners.

Place a ruler across the pieces at a 45° angle (it might help to use a ruler with the angle marked).  Use some type of marker to make a tick mark at the top of each piece.

Reposition the smaller block piece along the insert strip, matching the marks.  Pin, then sew. 

Also press this seam toward the insert.  The result should be close enough to your original block size.  Or right on, like this one!  Just trim the ends of the insert.
I’m going to finish this with some diagonal quilting, then bind it with the orange.  The Force Awakens!


WIP Wednesday: Donation Blocks and Star Wars

Today I finished the other five D9P blocks for Kat’s August block drive.  It’s straighter than it looks, I promise.

And here are all six together.

And then I started cutting up fabric for a Star Wars baby quilt. (No, not on my goals list at all…)  I’ve rearranged the colorful “nebula” squares.  It still lacks pizazz, but I have a plan!

I sometimes feel like I’m the only one who loves Kona Solids.  I like the colors, and I really don’t have any trouble with them fraying.  I like how substantial the fabric is, especially after I’ve starched it up and it reminds me of construction paper.  So I was pleased to see Rita’s post today at Red Pepper Quilts.  Leave her a comment to win a Kona bundle, and check out Stash Fabrics “Gimme the Konas”.  Be still my heart!  I don’t like fat quarters, and the larger cuts are a little pricey, but I may just need to do some stash enhancing on my own.

Hope you’re making progress this week.


July/ August Goals

So, July has come and gone.  I didn’t do too badly with my quilty goals.  I was only home for two weeks in July, so I kept them modest.
July Goals:

  1. Make the quilt for Orlando.  Yes!  Ready to mail off.
  2. Finish the Impressionist Quilt.  Yes!  I sent it to victims of the WV floods.
  3. Hang photo in Studio, etc.  No, again. Sigh.

Bonus: I made commissioned Elephant baby quilt, and I sewed a top for myself.


August Goals:

  1. Hang the darned picture already!
  2. Coastal-themed art quilt.
  3. Piece top to Birds in the Air quilt.
  4. Make autumn themed wall hangings / table runners.
  5. Make blocks for Kat’s August drive.


We shall see what August brings, but that’s what I’m thinking for now.

Good luck on achieving your goals!