Saturday, October 22, 2016

Heritage Stories: Helen's quilt!

Helen found me via 2 women in my guild: 1 an appraiser and 1 a long-arm quilter.  Neither of them found this something they would do but they knew someone who would:)  I had let it be known that I wanted to expand my commission clientele and so this delicate piece arrived on my doorstep!
The quilt was started and in 2 sections of 2 rows each.  The applique was complete and what was needed was the final assembly, the hand quilting, borders/quilting, and the binding.  What made it even better was that she knew exactly how she wanted it finished AND the hearts came with their own marking!

Here you can see the quilting in the hearts and the small hearts in the corners of each block.

This photo shows a heart design I drew out for the borders by combining a few other designs.
 A sweet label and finished!
This is a quilt that was started in the 90s and due to life and some health reasons she just wasn't able to finish it.
This is why I quilt.  It was fabulous to help another quilter fulfill this wish!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Hopes & Dreams Challenge for ALS 2016

Quilting for Charity.....
What an amazing community we are fortunate to be a part of.!! Every so often I get out of my business hat to make quilts for charity and it is always rewarding.
Here are a couple of stories about my charity support:

This second link was just one of my mini quilts to support AAQI which raised money for Alzheimer's research.  My mother's family lost 3 wonderful women to this illness and right now I know another very strong woman battling this terrible illness.

You may be wondering why I am talking about Alzheimers when we are here to talk about ALS?
According to the ALS website:
"....all neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s share some important features...."
It is a very interesting read and shows that we have the same goal working toward a cure for all the diseases in this family.

For the ALS challenge, many of the quilts go directly to patients who suffer with ALS.
They also sell some of the quilts with 100% of the money they receive going directly to research and a cure for ALS!

My support came in the form of donated patterns for prizes!  This means the winners can make more quilts to donate next year:)

Here is their statement & how you can help out if you choose:

“To Give a Handmade Quilt is to Give the Gift of Love.”

The Challenge…

  • To raise awareness of ALS-Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
  • To provide quilts & bring recognition, hope, and warmth to the lives of ALS patients.
  • To raise funds for research for treatment and a cure.
Please give the gift of a quilt to warm the life, the heart and the lap of an ALS patient, and help raise awareness and research money for ALS-Lou Gehrig’s disease.  To be a part of the Hopes & Dreams Quilt Challenge- Simply fill out your entry form and donate your quilts today.
Your donated quilts will be given to ALS patients or used to raise awareness and research money for ALS by being photographed, displayed, auctioned, or raffled.
In addition to contributing your quilt to a wonderful cause- all donated quilts are eligible to win exciting and wonderful prizes.  Our list of generous sponsors, categories and great prizes is growing.!  Hopes & Dreams is a non-juried quit challenge.  All donated quilts will be entered into general prize drawings plus there are incredible prized recognizing the most generous quilter, quilt shop, professional quilter and guild.  Special prize categories for theme quilts and ‘most popular’ quilt.
For the comfort of the patient, we request that quilted or tied quilts be a minimum of 35″ x 44″  Lap and Bed size quilts of all sizes are welcomed.  We look forward to you joining us in this unique quilting event – the Hopes & Dreams Quilt Challenge for ALS!

More information HERE:
and here
Please consider giving:)

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Scrap Quilt Challenge

Let's start with a giant HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME:))
It was fun finding out I would spend my birthday with so many quilters!
Ok, now down to business....
How do you define a "scrap quilt"?
You are here because you are taking part in the Scrap Quilt Challenge and they have rules, one of which is this:
A Scrap is defined as a piece of fabric smaller than a fat quarter left over from a previous project either done by yourself or someone else.  (It's okay to have scraps from another person)
So now we know the size but are there other rules?
I don't consider myself a scrap quilter by any means in comparison to all those who do it well and sometimes I question what the term "scrap quilt" means.
Is it different colors all put together willy nilly?  Can the sizes be large or small?  Should there be a common background? Does it all have to be random?
These questions would stop me in my tracks until I learned a new way of looking at scrap quilting.
Being military, I understand a 'scrap life' better:
a $10 bookcase here, hand me down bed there.......
When it comes to scrap quilting though, I feel the urge to control the outcome and might consider myself an organized scrap quilter.  What is the difference you ask?
Some scrap quilters can just let go and use that exercise where you just pull scraps from the bag without looking and go for it.
I cannot!  I have tried and as soon as two colors came together under (ok, near) the needle, I stopped and grabbed for another. 
If that is you too, then join me in my thought process so we can learn to be 'organized' scrap quilters together.
I'm not a matchy-matchy (all fabrics must be from the same line of fabric) quilter but to my eye the most successful scrap quilts are the ones with a common background so that there is a place for my mind to rest and the scraps are framed or shown off better, and ones that have a common element or theme.
An organized scrap quilter might pick a theme such as all florals, novelty, ocean, or birds.  A cream background combined with every floral scrap is beautiful but still hard for me.
OR, maybe deciding on a color scheme guides your scrap quilting and not the designs on the fabric.....I tend to fall into this category more!
When preparing to start a pattern sample, I shop from my stash first.  That seems like step one in organized scrap quilting because I now know that I have to make things work from the scraps on the shelf.
I don't remember anyone putting a size limit on how big my scrap could be so my rules are quite a bit looser:)
Exhibit A:  Las Flores de Amigas
This sample started with a FQ pack all from the same line and matched beautifully.  Did I have enough to finish the top?  No!  From my stash I had to shop for the backgrounds to the applique flowers, the black petals, most of the green leaves, and the borders and 9 patches. 
The applique background isn't one fabric but the scraps are similar so that it reads as one common background.
In my 'organized scrap' mind, this counts as a scrap quilt!  The red, purple, and center gold are the fabrics from the pack and everything else was shopped from my stash. 
See how simple this is..... Next.
Exhibit B:  To Market


This sample started from the shelf and on a tight deadline.  I had enough of the beige background for the quilt and not much else. The pumpkins are 4 different oranges along with using 3 different greens, 2 different reds, and 2 different browns.  Again, doesn't really follow the rules for this challenge but Baby Steps!!
Exhibit C: Butterfly Cabin 
This is probably my most successful 'Scrap' quilt.  The creams and reds are all different!  It didn't matter to me that the prints were different because I picked a color scheme and that guided my stash shopping.  As long as the colors went together it didn't matter that one may have a panda in the background and another a flower.  The pieces were smaller too because I really did shop from the strip basket on this one.
Do you have a strip basket?  You know the spot where you throw those left over trim strips or excess binding strips.....
Get one, they are very colorful after a bit:)

So if scrap quilting isn't your thing, I do hope I have inspired you to at least attempt it in a controlled setting.  After you get a few under your belt, it gets easier to let go (or maybe not:))

Go visit the blog to get started-there is still time!

You can find me HERE:
Thanks for stopping by!