Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Mama Mel Loves wedding quilt....

Melissa of Mama Mel Loves blog has some fun quilt projects going on over at her blog. Be sure to visit. This quilt is a fun idea for a wedding gift. What a great idea, and a thoughtful gift.

I began making quilts about a year ago, and I am now addicted to quilting. :) In December after making my 4th quilt, I decided to start a goal for 2010... making a quilt a month, for a total of at least 12 quilts for the year. Most of the quilts I have made have been for family or friends. I have told them my goal for the year, and many of them know that they will receive a quilt from me sometime this year. :) In January, as I was online searching for wedding gift ideas for my sister, I came across this website (, where the bride-to-be decided to use quilt signature blocks as her wedding guestbook, then quilted them together after the wedding, although the website doesn't show the completed project.

 I thought it was such a lovely, unique idea, that I immediately asked my sister if I could do this for her as her wedding gift. She thought it was cool also, so I began searching for fabric that suited her. She ended up choosing the fabric, Moda's Eden by Lila Tueller. Her wedding colors were pink and green, so the collection was pretty much perfect for her.

At the wedding, I set up a small table with a sign that had a generic image of the quilt-to-be, along with instructions, a plastic bag full of permanent fabric pens, and the signature blocks. Although not everyone participated, I was very happy with the number of guests who did! I also waited a while for some more family members to get their belated signature blocks delivered to me. I decided to omit the purples that were in the collection of fat quarters that I got, and used only the pinks, greens and yellows.

The white rectangles are the signature blocks from people who attended her wedding. I used Kona Snow for these. Each completed block is 13" square. I started cutting the fabric in February, started piecing in March, and finally completed the quilt in May. It shouldn't have taken me this long, but I was sick a couple of times during the process and had to put quilting on hold. The completed quilt is a twin size, the largest quilt I've made so far! I did an all-over meandering quilt with some occasional "sloppy hearts" mixed in. :) I quilted around the writing, since I wanted these blocks to stand out more. And on the back, I used more Kona Snow with some leftover Eden blocks pieced in for extra color.
 Not sure why this appears wrinkly... It really doesn't look like this in person. I presented the quilt to my sister and new brother-in-law all rolled up. I loved how it looked! My sister had mentioned she wanted a little bit of brown in the quilt, if possible, so I decided to make the binding a light brown that matches some of the outlines of the birds in the fabric. I also quilted using a tan colored thread. I wrapped the "quilt roll" using this cute twill tape I found on Etsy ( It says, "Happily Ever After" all over. So perfect! :)

Thank you so much for sharing my quilt story! :)
~Melissa (aka Mama Mel)

linking at amylouwho

Monday, June 28, 2010

Cluck Cluck Sew, Modern Chain Quilt...

Allison of Cluck Cluck Sew doesn't really need a introduction does she? Don't we all already know her and love her? Constant inspiration from her site. She has tons of tutorials and I vow to try everyone (one day). Be sure to visit her blog. This is her modern version of an Irish Chain Quilt. And I want it!!!

The inspiration for the Modern Chain quilt came from a traditional Irish chain quilt I saw in a magazine. The inspiration quilt was made with traditional americana fabrics that weren't my style, so I thought I should try a version with modern fabrics and using an easy strip piecing method.

It took some trial and error to figure out the strip piecing, but then went together so quickly after getting the measurements figured out. The fabrics are strips from about 18 different prints by different designers, I picked bright colors that would compliment eachother.

 The backing is one of my favorite backs yet, the fabric is from the Snorkel line by Cosmo Cricket. This was a fun quilt for me to make because it was neat to take a traditional pattern and make it modern.

Anyways, this is a fun quilt to make, I have about three more color schemes I want to make it in when I finally get more time (as if)!
Thanks for visiting and happy quilting! -Allison

And you can all buy this pattern at her shop here...

Friday, June 25, 2010

Blue is Blue, Star block quilt...

Morning everyone, this is from Audrie from Blue is Blue.  If you haven't checked out her blog, you must! Amazing stuff going on there. This was Audrie's first attempt at a star block quilt...(I am rather impressed!).  Beautiful work Audrie, now everyone, head over to her blog...(after you read her story of course...)
Last September, I answered a call from AmandaJean of Crazy Mom Quilts,  to make star blocks for quilts to be donated to Quilts of Valor. I immediately decided I wanted to make a block for such a good cause -- QOV gifts the donated quilts to the recuperating servicemen injured in the line of duty.

I'd never made a star block before, so of course I was nervous. But I was instantly hooked and slightly annoyed at myself that I'd only pledged to do one! So of course the obvious thing to do to rectify this was to make an entire quilt of stars.
At that time, I'd only been quilting for four months and had been afraid to use designer fabric. I'd used pre-cuts but this was my first foray into using yardage from my LQS. Saying that I was nervous cutting into these lovely fabrics is a severe understatement.

The fabrics, by Amy Butler, Heather Bailey, Howard Marcus and Tina Givens, are just lovely and sit so beautifully together. I named it Stars Align because this quilt just came together so easily. This is still one of my favourite quilts and every time I come across a picture of it, I can't help but smile. Every time I think about making a star quilt, this one pops in my head :)

I knew I couldn't keep it when I made it since it was too little for a lap quilt. At Christmas, it went to live with a lady in Sydney, Australia who gifted it to her little one. Being that I grew up in Australia, it thrills me that this quilt now lives in a place I still call home.

linking to amylouwho

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Diary of a Quilter, so sad...

Get your kleenex folks, this quilt and story are sure to make you cry. We don't want to give share any of the story, you  just need to read it yourself.  This is from Amy from the quilting diaries, an amazing blog you will want to check out for tons of inspiration!  Thank you Amy, this is a truly beautiful quilt for a beautiful baby boy.

This past November I received a phone call that shook me.  My dear friend, Sarah, had suffered a stroke while delivering her first baby and was in intensive care.  As I talked with my husband and other friends across the globe who knew Sarah, I really felt like she would pull through.  For one thing, she’s Irish.   She’s a fighter and she knows how to work hard for what she wants.
I met Sarah 14 years ago.  We were both in England, volunteers for our church at the time and were assigned to be partners/companions for 3 months.  We shared so much during that time that she became like my sister.  A year and a half ago my husband and I went back to England to visit.  We went to dinner with Sarah and her darling new husband.  Being with her again after all those years, it felt like no time had passed.  We just picked up where we left off.  I’ll always be grateful for that happy reunion.

About a week after that first phone call telling me about Sarah’s condition, I received another.  And this time the news was worse.  My sweet friend, a brand new mother with a beautiful healthy baby boy, had passed away.
I felt grief and, being half a world away, I felt helpless.  I needed something to do, when I really couldn’t do anything.  So I started a quilt.  I had planned to make a baby quilt when I first heard about her baby.  And so in wanting this baby to somehow feel close to his amazing mother, I decided on Irish flags to honor her heritage.
It was so cathartic for my heart to put my head and hands to work.  The creative process for this quilt was a blessing to me.  And I am so happy with the finished result. My machine-quilting skills are next to non-existent, and knowing of my sad story, a sweet friend, Gloria, offered to quilt it for me.  One more act of love going into this quilt!
And here is the gorgeous, wee man himself.  I wish I could wrap my own arms around this little lad and tell him stories of his valiant mother, but I can’t - he's too far away.  I hope that this quilt will be a surrogate for me and for Sarah.  For me: an act of love honoring a dear friend; and a symbol of the mother he will not know in this life, but whose influence I hope he always feels.

linking up to amylouwho

Monday, June 21, 2010

Nap time Quilter...Roots

Okay folks, this is the epitomy of a quilt story. When we got this quilt submitted from nap time quilter
we knew we had to feature it! What an amazing and beautiful quilt. It tells the story of her father and where he came from. Such an amazing and original design. We are truly impressed!
May 2010

Approximately Twin Sized

100% cotton, original design

Here it is, aptly named, my Dad's quilt: Roots. Roots for the garden growth that sustained my Baba and Dido as well as our family. Roots for the foundation of where we come from. Roots to acknowledge such an important part of our family legacy. Roots to impart growth the the family as the next generations arrive and thrive.

This was a true family project. My sister and sister-in-law and I pieced together the top, with a few helpful hands from my daughters and husband. Hubby and my brother watched the 6 kids so we could get that done, while my Mom kept the secret and took care of my sister's dog when she was away to get the top done. Then my brother and sister-in-law found the fabric for the back (so much Mark Lipinksi Krakow - how appropriate). They, with their kids, basted the quilt. I quilted it, again with input from Hubby and help from the girls. Here are my brother and I putting the finishing touches on the quilt. Me, the binding, and he, the label. (This picture entertains me so, the surgeon doing hand stitching.)

 Here is a broader view of the quilt, off the back deck of my brother's house. A house my Dad built for them. My Dad is a builder, always has been. He is one of those guys that doesn't know how not to work, so he is always happy to be putting something together. Of late, he's been spending some time with crochet hooks instead of hammer and nail.

Now, some details. This is part of the flower patch. A 2 inch checkerboard, with free motion quilting. See those little flowers interspersed here and there?

This is the house. Baba and Dido's house was this tiny house that my Dad himself help build, probably back in high school. It was probably less than 500 square feet. It consisted of a sitting room, an eat-in kitchen, one bedroom plus another sleeping area, and an entry/pantry. At some point my Dad added on another room, creating two bedrooms in total. And I still remember, back in the 80s, when the bathroom, and running water, was added.

It was quite a shock to the system to visit the house - we were suburban kids. I hated using the outhouse, and our arrival meant sleeping in stuffy beds, listening to the drinking and yelling of Ukrainian visits. Even to this day, it shows me what one can do in a small house.

On two sides of the house was a boardwalk made of wood. A small forest was on the back side, and a small lawn on the front. Otherwise the house was surrounded by garden.

No Ukrainian garden would be complete without dill and onions! Each of the veggies in the garden was quilted individually, with some brown, tight stipple in between. In fact, looking at these close-ups, you will see that each section was quilted individually. I would say I used at least 20 different threads throughout the quilt. Time-consuming and frustrating at times, but worth it.

The white picket fence that led up to the house was a perfect spot to really personalize the quilt. I practiced my cursive writing and put the family's names on the fence. This frames the yard with the picnic table, complete with a box of drying onions on it.

This Toe-Catcher photo shows the slough/dug out at the front of the property, complete with the little dock where we stood to gather water for the garden. Or where we caught frogs to freak out my Mom.

This is the label for the quilt. My brother is a label star. He found the grain elevator image. It was perfect because both my parents grew up across the street from the grain elevator. He played with the image, adding the town name and the necessary details about the quilt.
And here we are sharing the quilt with Dad, at a family brunch. It was presented with little fuss, but we all spent a lot time pouring over the details. I didn't see any tears from my Dad, but that isn't surprising. He's a gruff, tough man. But he knew what it was right away and definitely appreciated it. I only hope that it keeps him warm for all his upcoming naps on the couch.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Jelly roll quilt, Lily's Quilts...

This is Lynne from Lily's quilts in the UK. Meg and I are half Brit's, so we have a fondness for the UK. We get mad at my Dad for not raising us there, think how cute our accents would be!  Back to Lynne, she has some super cute projects on her site, she is very good with fabric combinations, be sure to check her out.  Thanks Lynne...

Hi, I'm Lynne from Lilys Quilts ( in the UK. The quilt I have decided to show on My Quilt Story was not the first one I finished but was the first one I started. The quilting bug bit me on 22 February of this year. I know that's the date because I have the invoice on my computer for a moda Authentic Layer Cake I ordered. But I couldn't wait for it to come to get started so I jumped in the car, headed up to our LQS, bought a mat, a cutter, a Sandi Henderson Farmer's Market jelly roll and some white fabric for sashing. I dashed home, hefted my ancient sewing machine down from the loft into the dining room, sat down and got started.

I had the quilt in mind I was going to make. I'd seen it on the Moda Bake Shop. It is called I'm Blushing and was designed by Natalia Bonner from Piecenquilt and made from a Moda Blush jelly roll with a white jelly roll for sashing. Natalia's version is a stunner, especially when you see the quilting up close which I haven't even tried to emulate, being way out of my league.

I couldn't get hold of a Blush jelly roll but was really happy with the substitute I'd found. It's a brighter, brasher more in-your-face version of Natalia's quilt. It's a quilt just for me, for my own pleasure and hangs on the wall in our kitchen. Sounds selfish I know but I love it too much to give it away.

The one thing I haven't been able to do is to come up with a name for it. It can't be I'm Blushing because it's not made from Blush. It would be great if your readers could come up with a suggestion!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A Quilting life...the amazing 24 hour quilt!

Sherri from A Quilting Life finished this amazing quilt with all the peicing in 24 hours total! It is a beautiful quilt, and you can find tons of amazing quilts and projects over at A Quilting Life... Thanks Sherri!...

This is “Garden Path” from the Kim Diehl book Simple Traditions. I changed it up a bit and didn't do the appliqué in the outer border because I was so intent on finishing right away. A friend of mine had made this quilt, and when I realized I had the pattern I went home that day and started cutting! I worked on it practically night and day and had it finished in less than 24 hours.

I think that one of the reasons I was so drawn to this quilt was because my first ever patchwork piecing was done when I was about 11—I made two 9-patch pillows from some pre-cut squares my mom purchased for me at the fabric store—and this quilt reminded me of those pillows!

I was determined to use what I had on hand and used several charm packs instead of the strip piecing method in the book (which would have been far faster)! I used every bit of the Shangri-La (by Moda) that I had along with anything in my stash that I could find to go with it!

After making this quilt it took me a year, yes, a full year to wash it...I was afraid of the colors bleeding. But I finally just threw in a color catcher and went for it...and it was fine!!! I also have plans to make this quilt again one day…using Christmas scraps!

Monday, June 14, 2010

My three Sons...Panaceia's Mantle...

Angela From My Three Sons made this beautiful bright happy quilt for a dear friend with cancer. What a kind friend to make this. Make sure to visit her blog for a lot more inspiration. Thanks Angela, and blessings for your friend!

Panaceia is the greek goddess of cures and healing. I made this quilt for my friend Liesl (I love her name!) - she is starting chemo this week to battle breast cancer. It's 53" x 62"
As soon as I heard she was diagnosed, I had to make a quilt. I imagine during and after chemo, feeling tired and chilled, and giving her something cheery to cover up with. Another reason to go with a greek goddess in the name, I got the blue/orange/yellow from an Olympic coach. His uniform jumped out of the TV at me!

I loved Amy's 'Peas and Carrots' the first time I saw it - actually the first thing I ever faved in flickr. It looks so happy! She made her quilt as a kit for the local shop and kindly sent instructions that went with the precut pieces. I modified it a bit to eliminate the boarders and turn the panels into my own little improv creations.

I used all my favorite Heather Ross cuteness - very happy little prints for Liesl. And I experimented with skinny boarders and solids. This block uses Kona school bus and tangerine - my favorite orange combo!

This fishy block has Kona turquoise as the darkest blue. The other two were pulled from pieces I bought before learning to label the cuts. It was also the most improv. I pieced/cut/added/cut/moved....I was thinking about Gwen's philosophy of add some if it's too small, cut some off if it's too big. I love how it turned out.

A bunch of my favorite fabrics, and a new fave. I LOVE the bees and honey comb of Miller's Flora and Fauna.

Originally the sashing was going to be snow, but thought the coal would give it a little more sophistication.

I love the light/dark thing that was going on with the Kona, so charcoal was the perfect choice for the binding!

I quilted it with invisible thread on the top so it wouldn't stand out against either the dark solids or the light prints. I loved every minute of making this quilt!