Sunday, March 11, 2018

Free fabric and a finish


Look at all this super cute ocean themed fabric! My friend Karen, who blogs over at KaHolly, sent all these pieces to me last week. Wasn't that sweet? She thought I would get around to stitching them up into a quilt long before she would, since it's been marinating in her stash for about five years. I couldn't resist working with them right away.


It's a series of 12 squarish panels that can be sewn into a soft book or a toddler quilt, plus some nice coordinating scraps in bright colors. I used the scraps for cornerstones, added some mottled yellow sashing and pieced this up into a simple 3x4 layout top. The bold, happy fish designs do the heavy lifting to make this fun, so I think simple piecing was all it needed. 


Fabric panels are notoriously uneven in size, and these were as much as 3/8" different in height and width from each other. However, there is a curvy, squiggly darker blue printed on the edges of the blocks, making an easy transition to the yellow sashing, no matter what the overall size. The top is about 36"x46", a good toddler quilt size. I'm going to donate this one to Little Lambs, which is one of the charities for Hands2Help this year. Sarah announced the challenge today; go take a look if you're interested. The quilts aren't due to be shipped until June, so I have plenty of time to quilt up these fishies. Thanks so much, Karen, for sending this packet of fun!


Meanwhile, I completely finished this quilt, called Olympic I-Spy. The Sunshine Online Quilt Guild had a little challenge during the winter Olympics games to stitch something up in the colors of the Olympic flag: red, blue, yellow, green and black. 


I used those colors to border little I-spy blocks in contrasting colors. It was fun and fast and the colors are bright and cheerful.


I sandwiched the top up with this happy red and white heart fabric and Warm and Natural batting. It's fairly thin, so the whole quilt is sort of a lightweight summer piece. The binding is a bright stripe in all the Olympic colors plus orange, but it works fine. 


I did big, soft floppy feather quilting to keep it snuggly. This motif is fast, fun and forgiving of a bit of lumpiness and asymmetry. Being personally both lumpy and asymmetric, this works well for me. My feathers are getting better in the middle of the quilt, but edges are still a challenge. I also managed to catch a big fold in the backing all along one edge, so a bit of frog stitching needed to happen (rip-it! rip-it!) Quilting will keep you humble, folks.


Here is the quilt being inspected by Number 17. It passed with flying (Olympic) colors, and then took a spin through the washer to get rid of cat hairs and other impurities. The cursing I did during the stitch ripping washes out, right?


Olympic I-Spy has already been shipped off to one of the coordinators for the Wrap A Smile quilt charity. You can read more about WAS here if you're interested. I didn't think I'd have time to mail any more quilts while we were still in the US, but we've been sitting in Key West for over a week waiting for a good weather window. Please note that this is NOT a complaint!


We use maps like this to help us decide when to leave on longer passages. The trip to the closest Bahamian island, Bimini, from here will take us about 24 hours. So we're looking for the map to be white and the lightest blue along our route during that time. That medium blue means the waves could be as high as 6 feet, which can be uncomfortable (but not dangerous.) Given the choice of enjoying another few days in Key West vs. getting bounced around on passage, we'll most likely keep waiting for smoother seas. Like quilting, boating is supposed to be fun!


18 comments:

Sylvia@Treadlestitches said...

Wow, you got a lot done! Great quilts and great causes. It looks so warm and sunny there. I'd love to be stranded in Key West sometime.
Cheers,
Sylvia@Treadlestitches

Mystic Quilter said...

I agree with Sylvia, you're certainly getting on with your quilting whilst you wait for calm seas! Love the photo of Number 17 carrying out her inspection, I'm sure she'll appreciate a little longer in Florida too.

Quiltdivajulie said...

One stitch at a time really adds up -- you are making some bright happy quilts! Yes to waiting for smoother seas - they're safer, too!

Janice Holton said...

Aww, I love your fishy quilt! That Karen is a sweetheart for sending that to you and you were the perfect one to get it all finished up! Once again, you made me laugh at your describing yourself as lumpy and asymmetrical. And cursing needing washed out of a quilt? You crack me up.

Heide said...

What a fun fish quilt! So bright and colorful. Sure to bring a smile to the person that receives it.

Vicki in MN said...

I love the fishy fabric and you did a quick but super cute quilt that any child will fall in love with. Happy calm sailing.

piecefulwendy said...

What a fun gift of fabric and a cute quilt as a result! I agree that this little quilt will make some kiddo happy. Good to see Inspector No 17 hard at work! Here's to calm waters soon!

Fiona said...

love both your quilts.... as always I am impressed with how quick you find something to make up ... and then just do it from start to finish.... interesting to see how you plan your journey too....
Hugz

Kate said...

Love your fishy quilt! Very fun colors. Congrats on finishing two quilts. Hope the ocean calms down soon so you can have smooth sailing.

Sandy Panagos said...

Working with panels can be a real pain. Yours turned out great. Both quilts did. I have to say I love the photos you take on the boat. So fun!

KaHolly said...

Wow! That was quick! I’m glad you had fun with that fabric, but I didn’t expect you to make something that fast! I’m ashamed of myself, but glad for you! Your Olympic I Spy quilt is adorable. I guess Key West is a good place to have to layover for a few extra days! Enjoy!

Pam @ Quilting Fun said...

Congratulations on your finishes! Both are adorable! I enjoyed looking at your map of the ocean. That is a lot of medium blue. What is it usually?

Linda said...

That Karen..she is the most generous person I know. You did her proud with how you sewed up the gifted panels. And you are very generous to be donating this one and the other one as well. There will be some very happy recipients. Good thing you aren't in my part of the world today. 110 km hr winds with snow and extra high tides. Probably be some damage along the coastline. I will be inside quilting away!

Kate @ Smiles From Kate said...

Wonderful fish quit, so fun and happy and a lovely I Spy too. Well done, I don't know how you do it all. Happy sailing.

Dar said...

What a good friend KaHolly is to send the perfect fish fabric for you to whip up into such a cute quilt. Love your sense of humor in describing your quilting and the negative things that washing will take care of. :) Great organizations to receive your wonderful quilts. Hope the sailing is smooth soon.

Sandra Walker said...

Good analogy there on teh boating and quilting. ;-) Love the cat-approved quilt, despite the frog in it, ha. NOW I get 'frogging'; read about it on a few knitters' posts and thought it some kind of knitting technique I knew nothing about, ha, oh no I know a LOT about frogging in knitting, especially this current scarf which has me colouring the air blue to match the yarn I'm using... Yay, for Karen's rejects becoming your gold...I'll call you Rumple-Quilt-skin next since you and I have a thing for plays on words...that's actually the name of a quilt shop in Alberta, one of the Top Ten ones in AP&Q in the past year methinks.

sillygirl said...

I could see you doing a few quilts like one of your out-of-the-country chart maps - maybe a whole wall of them after you end your voyages - better than wallpaper!

Val's Creative Life said...

I'm sewing a quilt using the same pattern as your eye spy. Man...I'm so jealous of all the wonderful quilts you've been able to create this month! All are just wonderful and perfect for the charities you have chosen. You have a genuine heart!