Snapshots of life on our little homestead

Posts tagged ‘Applique’

Baby Quilt Started

this weekend I stared working on the quilt for my new grandson. It has been a number of years since I have worked on a baby quilt, so I am having a lot of fun with the fabrics and patterns.


All of the pieces have been cut and last night I started working on the appliqué section at the top of the quilt. I was going to use buttons for the eyes on the sun, but then thought about all of the things babies put in their mouth. Any ideas for what would be a safer option for the eyes?


Mariner’s Compass quilt

Now that the quilts for the grandchildren are complete I have moved my mariner’s compass top back to the worktable. The center of this top consists of five rounds of paper pieced units. Since each of the rounds is circular, and sewing circles is one of my weakest areas, I am hand appliquéing the rounds to each other. This technique may take a bit longer than machine joining, but for me, the results are better. And since there are some many small units and repeated patterns in the stars I am using freezer paper pattern templates. The freezer paper allows me to only have to draw each pattern once and then stack template paper and use an unthreaded needle on my sewing machine to create multiple foundation patterns at once — it also means that I do not have to pick paper out of seams at the end of the project. 👍


I hope to complete the quilt center in the next week or so, and another month or two to complete the multiple borders selected for the piece. The the end of the project the top will be approximately 90 inches square.

The following Videos demonstrate a few of the techniques I am using in this project

New quilt project

Life has slowed down enough that I can spend a bit of time in my craft room. I have started a project that marries my love of paper piecing with a challenging floral pattern.

Project fabric set

Project fabric set

The end product will be a mariner’s compass quilt that has four circular stars nested inside of each other that are banded by flying geese. Under the star unit will be an appliqué wildlife scene.

First two star sets

First two star sets

If if all goes well the quilt top will be done in early to mid spring. I will post additional updates as progress is made.

A tale of caution…

About six weeks ago I finished the quilt top below. I was very proud of the design so decided to send it out to be customer quilted.

Dancing to the light of the moon

The decision to outsource is where the saga begins. I love, love, love designing and piecing tops but my quilting skills are not at the level that I would like, so I outsource a number of tops to be quilted by others. My favorite long arm quitter is Joanne at Splitting Stitches, she works closely with her clients, provides good input and feedback, communicate all through the process and provides quality work, unfortunately (for this project) she only does edge to edge work. So, I had to look for a long arm or free motion quitter that would take on a custom project.

After much searching I selected a quitter in Maine who has been doing custom quilting for others for 3-4 years. I approached her with photos of the top, an explained the inspiration and vision behind the top and asked her if she would be interested in working on the project. She said that she would be very interested and the initial communications over pricing, batting and possible design techniques went well… I was a bit concerned with her need to have all ribbons if the quilt was shown and placed, but that was a small detail since I wasn’t sure if the piece would be appropriate to show in anyplace other than my home. Once all of the  were worked out I mailed her the quilt top and backing.

A month went by and no communication. Then a couple of days ago I hear from her and she states that she is thinking about putting my piece on her machine and to start thinking about the stitching (not sure what she did with the information from our last conversations). So we email back and forth again (she not will to talk on the phone about the project) about the design for the quilt top. Yesterday she decided that she didn’t want to quilt the top after all. I have now wasted 7 weeks with this women and out a bit of money in postage and purchasing the type of backing that she wanted over what I had originally envisioned for the quilt. Now I am waiting to see if I get my top and backing back… be very careful who you choose to work with you on projects. Lesson learned for me.

Dance to the Light of the Moon

A couple of weeks ago I started working on a quilt that I designed more than a year ago. The piece is a bit of a study in merging a number of  techniques.


Four fabric layers down and a few more to go before the dancer can be placed

So far I have employed three of the five different techniques that will be used in the top: liquid starch and freezer paper applique, and paper piecing.

Paper pieced moon

Paper pieced moon

Even though I color coded the paper template the seam ripper was my best friend with the moon block… piecing the block was challenging but I really like the way it turned out.

liquid starch applique unit

liquid starch applique unit

I really dislike raw edge applique, so I used the liquid starch method and a clear plastic template to create the dancer for the quilt. She will be one of the last items placed on the top. The background will have to be completed before the best place for her can be determined.

Does anyone have ideas on what type of border the piece should be finished with? I have drawn and erased borders many times, but have not settled on a finish yet. I would love some input.


Dreaming of Spring

dreaming of spring quilt

With all of the snow and single digits temperatures I found some time to finish another quilt top. This one was created for a quilt challenge at our local quilt guild. We were asked to create a quilt using the color of the flower or gem for our birth Month.  Since I was born in March it was a double challenge for me since almost never use yellow in my quilts.

Kimono quilt update…

late jan snow

It is snowing again, so I was left with a bit of time to work on the kimono quilt …  it is nice to have a few blocks complete enough to move to the design wall. Finished up most of the kimono fronts, but it will take me a bit of time to bows for the back blocks.

kimono quilt

New project started…

For Christmas a got a few new fabrics, two of which I liked so much that I just had to cut into them…. so much for finishing the two quilts I have on the cutting table and the half a dozen or so tops waiting to be quilted.

I spent Friday evening cutting the fabric units.


Saturday after a bit of shoveling and errand running I finished the first block.


The blocks are a combination of machine piecing and hand applique. I believe that this will be one of those tops that I will complete quickly…. Not so sure how long it will take me to quilt since I will more than likely hand quilt the top.

Totem Series of Quilts: An Update

My wolf top is finally done and ready to be quilted. Thanks to all the ladies at the last guild meeting that helped me make a decisions about what type of border to add to the piece. Now I just have to find a quilter to work on the project…
wolf quilt top

A couple of days ago I started working on the second of 4 projects that I have envisioned for my totem series. This piece will be a frog sitting on a lily pad in a pond. I got the idea for this one from a frog that has taken up residence in the small pond on the side of our house. This creature is also the totem of my spouse.

Frog quilt project drawing

Frog quilt project drawing

Earlier this week I started working on the sky for the frog quilt. I will finish the sky and the water applique them together to create a solid background for the frog and associated elements that will be layered on top of the unit.

Working on the sky background for the frog quilt

Sky background for the frog quilt

Wolf Quilt Design

I am so happy that this quilt top finally made it out of my design book. I have created all but the left eye of this wolf. I hope to get her eye and the left side of her face done sometime this week, then I will move on to stitching down the applique pieces before stitching all of the units together.

wolf quilt update

The challenge on this piece will be deciding what type  of quilt design to use. Does anyone have a recommendation?

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