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Showing posts from January, 2016

Scrap the Stash Quilting

Blocks 9 - 34

A month after I started my "Scrap Buster" quilt, I am still feeling seriously out of my element and comfort zone, but I am enjoying the process with a surprising amount of enthusiasm. To date, there are 34 completed blocks.

At the outset of this project, I set 3 goals for myself.
1. Use up scraps and reduce the stash.
2. Allow myself freedom to play and experiment with improv quilting.
3. Make a block a day within a 30 minute time limit.

How am I doing re: scrap busting?

1. Only scraps and remnants have been used to this point. In order not to create even more waste, I have been trying to use the pre-cut shapes and pieces as they are, with as little trimming as possible. When a piece needs to be re-cut, I try to cut it in such a way that the off-cut can still be used somewhere else. Many of the scraps are 2 1/2" strip lengths left over from previous projects. Sometimes I can use the whole width to re-cut another shape. But because I am using 1" strips…

Tidying Up Those Loose Threads

Finished and Unfinished Bits of Boutis and Embroidery

Because of other plans and obligations, I realized in early November that there would be limited, if any, time to quilt before Christmas. That certainly proved to be the case. I had set out a few hand stitching goals for myself during this time, some of which were met, others not, plus a new, unplanned project was added.

The first projects that were completed were the two star embroideries for my grand daughter. When I made her quilt last year, "Catch a Falling Star", I made the label on the back into a pocket into which I will add a little star with a wish for her every year. For this year's star I borrowed a small piece of my precious yellow boutis batiste cotton (precious because I am having difficulty sourcing it) and proceeded with some easy embroidery stitches. Beads were added to give it a touch of sparkle.

Staying with the star theme, the little tree ornament below was embroidered onto antique white linen usin…

Hawaiian Applique Quilting

While on a family vacation in Honolulu, Hawaii just before Christmas, my daughter and I managed to squeeze in a class teaching the basics of traditional Hawaiian quilting. At the end of the class, we both had a 22" x 22" cushion size Hawaiian Applique quilt ready to stitch.

The coral coloured "Ulu" pattern below is my daughter's project.  Traditionally, the ulu is the first quilt made for the home to ensure that there will always be food on the table.

It's the designs of these applique quilts that make Hawaiian quilts unique. Each pattern is individual to the maker of the quilt and symbolizes who they are. Although many of the patterns use a similar motif or symbol, (for example the "Ulu" pattern), when adapted by the quilter, it becomes personal to that quilter and unlike any other version. Ideally, each quilter should create her own design, but beginner's are given a bit of a break.

Just as with "boutis", (from southern France), c…

"Scrap the Stash" Quilting 365

Scrap Buster 365:
Blocks 1 - 8

Good intentions are seldom a problem for most people, however, carrying them out takes commitment first, then time and focus. I find that time can become available with some re-direction of focus and prioritizing. Simplifying and being realistic are crucial to this exercise.

With that in mind, I have set 3 major quilt related goals for myself in 2016.

1. A new quilt/bedspread for our queen size bed.
2. Focus on boutis
3. Reduce the stash and clean up partially finished projects. The recommended daily dose for this is 30 minutes.

This last goal of "stash quilting" can accomplish several objectives. The obvious, of course, is that the "collection" will be reduced and scraps will be re-purposed. It will also allow me to experiment with improv quilting and with colour play. And 30 minutes should not interfere too much with the rest of my day.

Much of my fabric is stored in these IKEA acrylic boxes. There are 13 of these units full of fab…