scattered hearts

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Happy early Valentine’s Day! Strangely enough, I’m not really a ‘quilt for certain holidays’ kind of girl, but this is now the third year that I’ve made a Valentine’s Day quilt (also here and here), so who knows.

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The last two were very red and pink, so this time I went for all the colors, even a bit of neon! I wasn’t going to make this V Day thing a habit, but once Allison posted her tutorial for her heart quilt, I just couldn’t resist. And then after I thought about it a bit, I just couldn’t resist the though of hearts made out of hearts, so Umbrella Prints it was (I love this heart print!).

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(bleak, right? that’s the frozen lake in the background. I can’t wait for summer days!)

I’ve collected their beautiful fabrics over many years, and have bought my fair share of their large remnant packs, and it was really fun to pull them all out and use them all together in this quilt.

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I made up two sizes of hearts (the smaller ones are the size in her tutorial – oh ha! just went to link and see that she now has provided measurements for multiple sizes! The smaller blocks here are 4 1/2″ squares and the larger are 6 1/2″ squares), and then scattered them throughout the quilt top. I used a Cloud 9 Cirrus solid (ash, I believe) for the background. I sewed most of these blocks last weekend while sewing with a friend and managed to cut and sew all the borders incorrectly. It was comical, really. You can see in this photo how many extra (unnecessary!) seams there are. (I shouldn’t have pointed that out, right?!)

Allison’s tutorial though? Perfect! Just the quick, fun and satisfying sew I needed!

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a quiet rainbow quilt

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The start of 2015 had me motivated to quilt up some of those old tops that have been hanging in my closet (now that we’ve moved, they’re actually in my closet rather than a spare closet, so I see them and feel guilty on a daily basis!). I pulled this one out first since I had already prepared a backing.

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I looked back and discovered that I originally blogged about this top back in August of 2012, so really it was time to finish it up!

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Interestingly enough, I usually spray baste my quilts (and even wrote a tutorial about it here), though lately I feel it’s maybe not as sticky as it used to be. I’ve found that my quilt looks all nice and flat when I spray it, but as soon as I pick it up and move it to the machine, I’m finding the fabric is bunching up and not as smooth and taut as I’d like. So I’ve been doing a combo of 505 and pins, which seems like a waste of time, but I suppose I’ve always been afraid of just basting a quilt with pins. I went for it this time, and was pleasantly surprised to find that not only was it easier than I imagined, but I was so happy with how the quilting turned out and how flat and smooth it is (without having to stop and rebaste!)

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I picked these fabrics as my version of a low volume rainbow. It’s interesting to look at now — at the time these were the lowest volume fabrics I could find in my stash. I’m not sure if I just didn’t have more in my stash, or if it was just that it was before there were so many low volume prints available. I do love the less bold versions of these colors and how they look with all the white and off white solids. I also got to add in lots of favorite linen-y prints by Ink & Spindle and Skinny LaMinx, making it extra special.

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It’s quilted with horizontal straight lines about an inch apart and has this gray Flea Market Fancy print as a backing along with a brown polka dot for binding.

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Big thanks to my friend, Melinda, who braved the zero degree temps and snow banks to hold this one up for me while our kids waited (somewhat) patiently in warm cars. All along I’ve been waiting for a good snowstorm for some quilt photos, but wasn’t planning on these negative temps! You probably wouldn’t notice, but the quilt is sideways here – when it’s this cold out there’s no time to adjust such things!

Posted in Fabric, Finished Quilts, Posts about Quilts, Quilts, [search] HST Quilts | Tagged , , , , | 18 Comments

Echo quilt (+ giveaway!)

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I’m excited to show you this quilt today! A while back I received an unexpected package from Windham Fabrics that included this great bundle of their upcoming Artisan Cottons. I was excited to see that they were adding these gorgeous shot cottons – I’ve always loved the extra depth that these cross weaves provide. I learned (during this blog hop, actually!), that half of these colors are woven with two different colored threads to produce the main color, while the other half are woven with a color and white to produce a chambray look.

Anyway, I admired the fabrics, then added them to the stash, because I was busy with other projects. As I pulled fabrics for other potential quilts, I found I frequently pulled colors from this bundle – they paired so well with so many bundles I put together (this one, and this one, most recently…)

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Then, as is often the case, I suddenly decided this quilt shown in Roderick Kiracofe’s book, Unconventional & Unexpected, was a quilt I had to make right now, and decided that this bundle was the perfect fabric for said quilt (too bad I had already used a few of the colors!)

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While I usually like my like my quilt to be different enough from the inspiration that it feels like something new, sometimes I like a quilt so much that I want the same one for myself. This is the case here – I’ve always held a soft spot in my heart for string quilts (I’ve made quite a few, and have a tutorial on how to make a string block here!), and I really love how the blocks in this quilt use the same fabrics in an alternating fashion. I also am fond of the fact that mixed in with the solids, there are a number of other solids and stripes.

Since each block uses two colors, I decided to sew strips together into strip sets and then cut my square, rather than using foundation piecing. I think it was a lot faster, especially since I was able to cut a few squares from each strip set.

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Like the inspiration quilt, I wanted to add in a few extra fabrics to help increase the size and to add a bit of extra interest – I raided my stash and was happy to stumble upon a couple Japanese bundles I had bought a while back from Westwood Acres (they have the latest First of Infinity and other great Japanese bundles available now) – the florals just seemed appropriate, and I was mighty excited to find the Suzuko Koseki stripes, especially since I could cut them so they ran perpendicular to the stripes in my blocks.

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I love how the quilt turned out – I wish you could see it in person, because the shot cottons really add something extra that I’m not sure you can really see in these photos.

These new solids will be available in April, so be sure to look for them then! Or, leave a comment here to be entered to win this great fat quarter bundle of all of these beautiful colors. One comment per person, please! I’ll select a winner Friday evening.

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UPDATE! A winner! Random.org selected #170, Tiffany, who said “Oh my word… so beautiful! I love stripes, and especially like the sweet little florals mixed in too. Stunning fabric.”

Thanks for all for playing along!

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Also, be sure to check out these posts from earlier this week about the Artisan Cottons – each blog will also be hosting a giveaway in case you want to up your odds!

Monday:    Windham Fabrics (www.windhamfabsnipits.typepad.com)
Tuesday:   Rachael, Imagine Gnats (www.imaginegnats.com)
Wednesday:  Leanne, She Can Quilt (www.shecanquilt.ca)

Posted in Fabric, Posts about Quilts, Quilts | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 437 Comments