Evening in the Garden Quilts

Adventures in Fabric Art

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Monday Stash Report: 7/9/18

It wasn’t that I didn’t realize that yesterday was Sunday. I just couldn’t get these pictures off my phone. Sure enough, there they are today.

No, this is not one of my low-volume projects. I had made a leader-and-enders kit with old scraps (maybe twelve years old), and the blocks were ready to be sewn together and quilted. I backed it with the last of a very bright stripe from a line of road construction fabric. I used the last smidges of the stripe for the binding, but didn’t have enough, so I used my last strip of bar code stripe. It all used about three yards of fabric. I quilted it diagonally in both directions with yellow Sulky thread. I’ll be donating this to Project Linus.

This week: + 0 yards, – 3 yards

This year: + 55.50 yards, – 75.25 yards

Net destashed added in 2018: 19.75 yards

Hope you are well, and finding time to sew your stash.

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Finishes, and the Final Stash Report

2016-12-28-12-58-03My last quilts for this year were these twin Maple Leaf quilts for donation to Margaret’s Hope Chest for a program called A Mother’s Hope.  (I heard about this from Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts.)

2016-12-28-12-59-06I didn’t piece these six-inch maple leaves, they’re from a top I brought home that my mother had pieced.  I knew she’d be glad for it to go to a good cause.  I was just going to add some borders and call it done, but it was already 48″ by 60″.  This drive is looking for really small quilts (36″ x 50″ or so), so I took the top apart in the middle and made it into two quilts.  These each finished at 40″ x 62″.

2016-12-28-13-00-43I quilted between all the blocks first with the walking foot and fine thread, so they have more quilting than might appear.  On one I quilted straight lines through the leaves and feathers through the blank spaces, edge to edge.

2016-12-26-16-12-44On the other, I quilted wavy lines to suggest wind, and then a feather border.


2016-12-30-14-58-54My other finish this week is twelve pillowcases (here are six) to donate to Case for Caring (which used to be Conkerr Cancer).


This week:  + 0 yards,  – 19 yards
This year: + 108.25 yards,  – 160.5 yards
Net destashed in 2016:  52.25 yards

So, I met my year’s goal, just barely, but I did.  We won’t discuss the vast amounts of fabric that are on order, but I’ll worry about that next year!


Finished Baby Quilt

2015-09-07 08.27.17This quilt began with rummaging though my 6.5″ scrap bin.  I pulled together these pretty florals and semi-solids.  Some were more recent, but some were OLD and needed to go.  It is nice and square, even though it didn’t want to hang flat for the photo.

2015-09-07 08.28.22Yes, I cut the four-patches different widths.  That was a… design choice!  I kind of like it.  I was originally going to use all twelve Disappearing Four Patch blocks for the top, quilt it, bind it, and be finished.  No matter how I turned the blocks on the design wall, they looked like…well, not good.

2015-09-02 09.26.00Sashing was in order.  The #Twilters and I looked at a number of choices.  The deeper ones were appealing, but not soft for a baby quilt.  In the end, I went with a soft blue dot for sashing and a two-tone green for borders.

2015-09-07 08.27.44Quilting was lots of vines and flowers, with minimal marking.  The largel-scale quilting left it nice and soft.  I used a variegated So Fine by Superior for all the quilting.  It shows up, but echos the soft colors.

2015-09-07 08.29.15A special thank you to my photography asisstant, Yuri.

2015-09-07 08.30.34This is headed for Project Linus.

Linking to Michelle’s Let’s Make Baby Quilts and Free Motion Maverics at  Lizzie Lenard’s.

Baby quilts


WIP Wednesday: Very Green


Today I’m quilting this chartreuse Rail Fence quilt.  It’s for donation, and is sort of the companion to this more girly one.  I’ve stitched in the ditch between all the 8″ blocks.  Now I’m working on free motion spirals in alternate blocks, with only the outer edge marked.  It’s a learning experience, but I’m getting better.


Of course, I have good help.  (This paw wasn’t here when I started to take the picture,  but wouldn’t cat paws be awesome for fmq-ing?)

Thinking of simple stars for the alternate blocks, unless you talk me into something else.

What are you working on?
I’m linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.


Rail Fence Finishes



scrap basket QAL


Something clicked when Amanda Jean suggested this Scrap Basket Quilt Along.  I have been whittling away at my stash, and this seemed like a fun way to use a lot of fabric.  Boy’s quilts are especially needed, which caused me to think of the lonely pile of cowboy fabric scraps from Guthrie, OK, that has been waiting a long while to be used.  When I dug it out, I found a pile of plaid scraps left from a graduation quilt (circa 2000).  Okay, so a fun way to make two quilts.



The cowboy fabric was red, light, and blue, so it ended up like this.



I used up every smidge, including on the back, where I also added some orphan blocks, a solid, and a starry fabric.  Perfect for a little cowboy to sleep under.



To quilt it, I first stitched in the ditch between all the blocks (per this post).  I liked Amanda’s approach to the quilting (she stitched a trio of wavy lines down every column and across every row), but I wanted to change it up, so mine are twirling ropes and strands of barbed wire.  Ouch!  I alternated rows to leave blank areas.



I put hats on some. (Here’s the brown chalk stripe binding.)



And boots on others.  I’m pretty happy with the results.  Bottom Line on the bottom, Masterpiece on top.



I quickly decided to add khaki Kona to the plaids.  I did that to provide a place for the eye to rest, but it turned out to be a good idea structure-wise.  These woven plaids are very stretchy, and the solid really stabilized the whole top.  By the way, fabrics from long ago were a few inches wider than today’s.  I cut six sets of 6 1/2″ blocks from every set of sewn fabric strips, often with a bit left over to make into a block for the back.



I also used up included an unusual … mosquito? print fabric, also left from a graduation quilt of the same era.



2014-06-28 14.24.31

This time I thought I would use the wavy lines, but just down and across the centers of the blocks, and really large.  And, after I found my rhythm, I was really pleased with the way I free-motioned these with no marking.



The problem came when I turned the quilt and went across the original waves.  It formed these nesting, 3/4 circle things.  Actually, it makes giant puzzle pieces between/across the blocks.  I’m not sure I like it.  I looks vaguely like the quilting on a motel bedspread.



But, it’s very even, and, with the quilting between blocks, holds the quilt together very well.  I used Superior’s Living Colors poly on top.  I bound it with the last (reasonably stable) bit of plaid.


2014-06-29 16.49.07

So, all and all, a fun couple of weeks and some learning, in the name of a good cause.  See the rest of these Rail Fences at Amanda’s Scrap Basket Quilt Along over at Crazy Mom Quilts.


The Tulips are Finished!


All done!  And successful.  I have to say that this is one of those quilts that I saw in my mind’s eye and was able to create the vision from fabric.  Yes, I got tired of looking at the pink, but it was the right choice.  I did use my design wall a lot, really changing around the position of the blocks, and enlisting input from the Twilters, but in the end I think it became a rich and inviting quilt.


I think the two tulip prints worked together because they are the same scale and use different values of the same colors.


The extra blocks and the rest of the lighter tulip fabric went on the back.  I did a really good job using up all of these two fabrics but for a few scraps.  My stash feels lighter.


This is quilted in all the ditches with Bottom Line thread.  I did do the accent quilting with pale green King Tut, but I decided to mark it with wavy lines through every row of squares and quilt those lines with the walking foot.  I have two of these June Tailor rulers for various sizes of curves and scallops, and I use them a lot.


Are you aware of how many shades of green fabric do not match this quilt?  I have two drawers of green fabric, and almost none of it was suitable for the binding.  I finally combined two pieces that look very similar, one darker than the other.  It doesn’t really look scrappy,  just shaded.


I used a label cut with a little extra space at the bottom to write a message when I donate this quilt.  (Note to Universe:  no new disasters are needed just because I have a new quilt ready to donate.)

What did you finish this week?

I’m linking up with Finish It Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.


Finished Donation Quilt

2013-05-24 08.55.08

I finished up the blue and orange donation quilt yesterday.  I had a lot of fun quilting it with straight lines and feathers in orange thread (Superior Highlights, 40 wt.).   The textured blue fabric was weird and stretchy to piece together, but not too bad to quilt with the walking foot.  It has great cozy texture now that it’s washed up.


I have to admit that I like the back almost as much as I like the front.  These are orphan blocks from a double nine patch that I had made, and some from this quilt, when I discovered that too many nine patches would make it too busy.


So much of the stash fabric I have and need to use is floral, and makes pretty feminine quilts.  I try to switch off by making every other donation quilt out of something a little more appealing to anyone, including men.  And, apparently, cats.  Lots of help.  This is headed to Moore, OK.


You could have knocked me over with one of my own feathers yesterday when I answered the phone and it was Judy Laquidera from Patchwork Times!  I was sewing the binding to this quilt when she called.  She called several of us who had donated quilts for West, TX, to see if we minded if she sent them on to Moore.  They have all they need in West, and Judy knew of a truck with people she trusts going to Moore.  I told her I was fine with that, so I guess my pink and gray quilt will go there, too.

Doesn’t it seem like there’s been a lot of need this year?   I sorted some strings last night to start a new donation quilt for whatever comes next.  Don’t even want to think about that.

What have you finished this week?

I’m linking up to Finish It Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.


It Up Friday: Projects for Boston and Everywhere

Project%20HopeThis week I have two finishes, both sewn with thoughts of hope and peace for this troubled world in which we live.  I’m very pleased with the way my Project Hope Online Quilt Show contribution turned out.  We all know how hard it can be to translate a vision into fabric reality, but mine came very close.  I puttered around and put it off, but now that it’s finally finished, I like it.  See all the Project Hope quilts on Flickr.


On the day that I mentally committed to joining this project, the background fabric presented itself to me.  I opened the door to my fabric closet, and out tumbled a little, beribboned pack of fat quarters that I could not remember seeing before.  I mean, a sign is a sign, right?


Me:  When were we in Grantsville, MD?

DH:  Two years ago on the way to the Buffet concert.  There was a bridge…  We ate lunch there.

Me:  And there was a quilt shop there?

DH:  Yes!  In an old school building.

So then, yes, I did finally remember Four Seasons Stitchery and the little bundle of batiks I bought there.


I sprayed bleach to create the ray of sunlight.  Then I fused fabrics down to create the flowers, and use various threads to “paint” them.  There is also a chalk pencil involved for some of the white shading.  I quilted the sunbeam with iridescent Sulky mylar thread, the “Hope” with Sulky white rayon and the iridescent, and the background with Superior poly monofilament.  The stamens are French knots.


Enjoy the binding on this piece, because I will probably never do it again.  Fiddly!!

My flowers are charred and gray on the outside, but are opening in the ray of light to reveal their beautiful, hopeful interior.  Nature is always renewing itself, in spite of setbacks.  The binding is my reference to Jacquie’s work (Tall Grass Prairie Studio) here and here.  Her work is graphic and cathartic, but not very hopeful to me (these particular pieces).  So, my binding is blood red, but it does open to admit the sunlight.


Also finished is my flag for To Boston With Love.  See others at their page on Flickr.

I’m linking up with Finish It Up Friday on Crazy Mom Quilts.


Finish It Up Friday: Pink and Gray Donation Quilt


With the 4 x 4 pink, gray, and white blocks completed, this quilt went together quickly, and the solid gray offered a good place for some fun quilting.


It’s all from stash, and a lot of 2 1/2″ scraps from many previous projects that were fun to revisit.  I made the blocks back in December or January when I was unfocused and needed some mindless piecing to keep me moving forward.


I knew the fuscia hand dyed fabric was the right design choice for the binding, but I was pretty nervous about it bleeding, even though it had been prewashed.  I used three Color Catchers when I washed it, but didn’t have a bit of bleeding, so that was a relief.   (Reused those C C s later to prewash newly arrived fabric, and they picked up some dye there.)  It’s actually two different pieces of hand dye, but we won’t tell, will we?  This binding was a lot easier to photograph than the one on my last quilt, so I took photos as I did it for the machine binding tutorial.


This quilt has no current destination.  I wanted, for once, to have a quilt ready made for the next quilt drive or disaster, so now I do.

I’m linking up to Finish It Up Friday on Crazy Mom Quilts.  (Check this out, I’ve met a lot of fun people over there!)


Finish it up Friday: Deep, dark donation quilt


This is one of those quilts that is hard to photograph because of the contrast in the colors, but up close those rich, dark boxes are really very interesting, something someone can look at for a while.


Some of the darks are brown and navy prints from the “Japan” line by Robert Kaufman.  I love them, but they never went with anything else.  The one with the gold overprinting is “Cultivated Cottons” from Andover.  There’s some “Madrona Road” orange in there, and a couple of In the Beginning fabrics I forgot to check before I cut up


I’m happy with the way the back came out.  It’s very warm looking, with all those browns, but also very interesting.

IMG_1526IMG_1525The quilting…  I like what it did, but I wish it were a little more accurate.  It does give a lot of texture.  It also brings the aqua back into it and brightens it up.  I guess I am just used to using very fine, blending thread, so this looks pretty bold to me, but there it is.  All in all I’m happy with it.

I’m sending this off to Luanna’s 5000 quilts for Hurricane Sandy campaign.  I know it’s almost spring, but there’s still a lot of cold weather, and they keep running out of quilts.

I’m linking up to Finish it up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.