Friday, January 31, 2014

Finished! Sherbet Lane

Here it is, my first official finish of 2014!

I decided to name this sweet little baby quilt Sherbet Lane, because of the soft colors and the print fabric line, which is "Road 15" by Sweetwater for Moda.

This quilt is a "stack and slash" pattern. I based my design off the instructions in this post, but modified the measurements to work with charm squares as the centers.

If you are interested in making a similar quilt, I used 5" charm squares surrounded by 3.5" strips.  Then I made cuts 4.5" from 2 adjacent sides. Rearrange and sew the pieces back together to yield ~10.5" unfinished blocks.  A charm pack typically has 42 squares, so one pack would be enough for a 42 block quilt, set in a 6x7 layout and finishing at a large lap size.

This quilt finished at a nice baby size, 40"x50" prior to washing.  I quilted it with the same swirling pattern that I've used on other quilts lately, from Angela Walters book (I really can't say enough good things about this book!)  I love how much more natural FMQ is getting as I practice.

The solids are all Moda, from my LQS.  The /white one is Fog, the yellow one is Cream, the green is Avalon, and I don't know the name of the grey/blue.  I love the combo of these soft colors together. May have to make another quilt with them soon!  The quilt is backed in a nice blue plaid homespun and machine bound in the green solid used on the front.

I'm linking to Finish it Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Finding my motivation..

For a while there, since New Years, I kind of lost my get-up-and-go.  January is always a slow time of year for me.  It seems the train may be back on the tracks, though :)

The do. Good Stitches blocks continue to roll in and rearranging them on the design wall never ceases to get me inspired.  (Tutorial for the block is here in case you haven't seen it before.)

Then I saw this blog post on quilter blogs and decided to see how the pattern would look with a charm pack and some solids.  As you can see, it turned out pretty great.  Can't wait to get this one bound and have an honest to goodness finish again!

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The WIPs are multiplying...

Nothing make my day more than going to the mailbox and finding quilt-y things.  I love when it's my turn as the queen bee in my do. Good Stitches circle and the blocks start coming in. Every time I get a new one I have to rush in and put in on the design wall with the others. 

So far I have 4 blocks here.  (I am aiming for 12 but can make do with 9 for the finished quilt.)  These were made with the Drunken Circles tutorial.

The other thing I accomplished this week was coming up with a cute new layout for a charm pack.  I took pictures and wrote down measurements along the way so I can put a tutorial on the blog for y'all later.

Here's hoping this next week is a little more productive!  Linking up to Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Finished! Pretty Pink Quilt and Bag

I'm really getting addicted to making baby quilts.  This time it all started because I ordered a FQ set of Lotta Jansdotter "Glimma" fabrics in oh-so-soft pink from Tactile Fabrcics.  I combined them with some pink polka dots I've had in my stash forever and a nice crisp white and the next thing you know, there's a quilt!  And of course once you have a baby quilt you need a diaper bag... It's like "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie" around here.

I made this quilt using the same design technique as for the Wonky Square-in-Square blocks for my group's do. Good Stitches quilt.  I made these blocks finish at 12" instead of 10" (just increase the size of the original cuts of fabric in the tutorial by 2"). The quilt uses 4 sets of 3 blocks each.

I found a nice lilac in my stash to round out the fabrics in the top and use for binding.  Honestly, I think every one knows that I am NOT a "pink" sort of a girl, but I LOVE this quilt.

I did FMQ on the quilt using the "Swirls" pattern from Angela Walters book.  The FMQ gives the quilt a wonderful drape and delicious texture. Finished it measures just under 36"x48", perfect for a crib quilt.

Ever since I made my first Cooper Carry-All bag I've thought it would make the perfect diaper bag.  Making the wonky squares blocks generates quite a few 1-2" rectangular scraps so put 2 and 2  together and made a matching diaper back with scraps from the quilt.  I use my favorite textured grey woven fabric for the body of the bag.

I quilted a few lines of pink stitching, which pop beautifully against the grey fabric.  Everything is back-stitched, top-stitched, and double-stitched, so the bag should stand up to years of use and multiple washings (babies are messy!)

I added a top zipper to the bag as well as a zippered pocket inside.  (The zippers are not in the original pattern but they are easy enough to add).

Six big pockets along the out side for keeping must-have items in reach.  If you haven't bought the pattern and made one these bags yet you really should. They are the best!

The quilt and bag are listed in my Etsy shop, together or separate, ready to go to a new home!

Lining up to Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Cold day WIPs

Brrr! I know it isn't as cold here as it is in the rest of the country, but for Texas it is COLD!  I have been taking advantage of the weather to stay inside and sew.  First off I've finished some new ferret bedding.  We have to change and wash their bedding about once a week and they enjoy exploring something new in their cage, so they have quite a few different configurations of hammocks. This one has proved very popular already!

Bear is asleep in the bottom level
The "watery" teal and low volume quilt is being quilted.  ( I have got to come up with a better name for that one.) It turned out quite a bit bigger than I was planning. I decided to do a mix of straight line and FMQ quilting.

I also got some new fabrics this week. The scrap pack I won from Practically Pippy during the early December Give Away days arrived.  Here are some of my favorite fabrics!

Linking up to WIP Wednesday. Stay warm everyone!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Assembling Your Quilt {Quilt-as-You-Go Simple Sampler}

This is the final post in the Quilt-as-You-Go Simple Sampler Series!

Today I'll be showing you how to assemble and finish your quilted blocks.  I'm going to be writing these instructions for the 9 block, 3x3 arrangement we've been making so far in this series, however, you can easily adapt the technique for any size quilt you want to make.

Here's how your finished quilt might look
The blocks are going to be joined together with what I'm calling "sashing" on the back. I chose to make mine from a contrasting color, but if you made yours from the same color as your backing they would almost disappear.

Back of the quilt with contrasting sashing
From the fabric you're going to use for the back sashing cut several 1" strips.  You'll need (6) 16.5" long (or the length of one side of your blocks) and (2) 48.5" (or the width of your finished quilt).

Use your iron to press under one side of the sashing by 1/4".  I do this by placing a needle through my ironing mat with a 3/4" gap underneath and slowly pulling the sashing under it while pressing.

Decide on the layout of your blocks and begin to assemble in rows. To join two blocks together, first sew the sashing to the back of one of the blocks along the side where the two blocks will be joined, sewing the non-folded side to the backing and catching the batting in the seam.

Keep the top folded back out of the way, you only want to sew the sashing, backing, and batting.

Next align the two blocks and sew their tops together along with the batting that wasn't sewn into the seam with the sashing.  Again, keep the other layers folded out of the way. You only want to sew the two tops and the one layer of batting.

Now your two blocks are joined together with the back unfinished.  I recommend spreading the blocks out on your ironing board face down at this point.  Now we'll start to nest the layers together.

First fold in the backing not attached to the sashing.

Next fold over the batting/backing/sashing sandwich from the other side.

Fold the sashing over the top of the seam, keeping the pre-folded edge turned under.  Use your iron to press the whole seam flat.  The purpose of nesting the layers like this is to decrease the bulk that is often a problem in QAYG quilts.  Also, catching both sides of the batting in a seam means you don't have to quilt in between the blocks if you don't want to, because the batting is already anchored.

Pin the folded edge of the sashing in place to prepare for sewing it down.

Sew along the side of the sashing with a Ladder Stitch, just like you hand sew down binding.  Be careful not to let your stitches go through the front.  This seam isn't going to be under any stress, the two seams we machine sewed are doing the actual work of holding the quilt together.  This seam is just to finish it off nice.

If you are planning to quilt in between the blocks you may as well do it as each set of blocks is joined.  No need to lug the whole quilt around for as long as we can avoid it.  I got this pattern from Angela Walters book, which has a section specifically on long narrow patterns for areas like sashing.

Join your rows to each other exactly the same way you joined the single blocks to each other, except with longer seams.  Quilt in the sashing if you want and bind however you usually do.

You're done! Way to go!  If you have any questions or comments about these tutorials, or if you make something using one of my tutorials please leave a comment. I love feedback!

Thanks to everyone who has followed along for the QAYG Simple Sampler.  It's been fun!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

2013 Retrospetive

Happy New Year everyone!

2013 was a great year for quilting here at Kat and Cat Quilts :)  Here are the stats, this year I finished:
28 quilts
3 wall hangings
6 bags

You can see most of my finished projects under the Finished Quilts tab at the top of the page. I also made major progress learning to FMQ, which was last year's New Years Resolution.  Here's hoping next year bring even more quilt-y finishes :)

(Mosaic made with BigHugeLabs Mosaic Maker. You should check it out!)