Quilts And All Things Fabric...

As an avid fabric enthusiast, a blog about quilts and all things fabric just seemed the obvious thing to do.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Relaxing on Easy Street...

Right! Relaxing....HA! It has been so crazy busy around here lately, I'm making lists and checking them twice and then twice again just to make sure something hasn't been overlooked or just plain forgotten!  No, seriously, I have three lists going today.

Sewing has been very limited. But I did manage to finally get around to working on Clue/Step #4 for the Easy Street Mystery on Sunday. I know, I know....the clue came out on Friday! Wow, that's a big time delay. But we had a dinner party on Saturday, so guess the delay was worth it. :-) (Oh, yeah and I also whipped out a table runner (to match my Christmas place mats) after dinner on Friday night to go on the table for Saturday's dinner party. WHEW!)

The mystery clue/step 4 was an easy one this week (good thing, too or I might never have managed to get it done). Much the same as previous Step 2. Then half of the Step 2 flying geese units and the new Step 4 flying geese units were combined to make a cute little square.
The Clue/Step 4 units were made using 2" strips of the purples and turquoise fabrics and those wonderful rulers: Easy Angle and Companion Angle. The picture above shows part of the cutting process and pairing up of the geese and wings. (Fabrics are stacked so you are only seeing the top color.)
Here we go, setting the first wing.
Once the first wing was attached, the units were pressed then the second wing was sewn in place.
The pieces fit together beautifully. I think we might be giving a new meaning to the hardware term "wing nut". Yes, I think I am becomming a "wing nut". :-)

After all of the 64 purple and turquoise flying geese were made, it was time to pair them up with their Step 2  "cousins" made using purple and black on white fabrics.

Because I am using a limited amount of fabrics of each color, and not going too scrappy, it was necessary to "play" around with PLACE the fabrics so as not to get two purple geese of the same color in the combined blocks.

The new purple and turquoise winged geese were attached to the bottom of the Step 2 white winged geese. The above photo shows the units being stitched together. See that little thread X on the purple flying geese section? That is where the stitch needs to track to make a good point.

It didn't take too long to get the 64 units stitched together. Here they are all stacked up, laid out, or whatever you want to call it...for their "TA-DA" photo.
They look so much better in real life than in the photos! I really love these colors and how they are "playing" together.

The additional step for this week was to go ahead and cut our green into 145  3.5" squares. A quick and easy process.  Well supposed to be...SHOULD be! But when I started to stack them up, two my little stacks (6 squares all totaled) were NOT square. Some how I had managed to miss cut and they were 3.25. Go figure. So, back to the cutting board....those 6 boo-boo's will eventually get used up somewhere in something. LOL Just proves I need to pay closer attention!!!!
Anyway, here's the greens all stacked up for the camera.
Due to the upcoming Holiday's, family and personal obligations, I am telling you now that I will be running behind on the mystery quilt and probably not publishing any linkups until mid January. Hopefully I will be able to follow along and see how its going. I will FOR SURE be back in the 'game' and catching up as soon as possible. I love doing Bonnie's mysteries!

May you all have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Monday, December 10, 2012

A 'Beach Blanket' Quilt

With all the activities going on around here at Beachwood Cottage it was a streatch to get this project started let alone completed. (Christmas parties, Christmas shopping, golfing, fishing, visiting with friends, chatting with friends online....amazing what all can get done during the holidays.)
 But here it is:
David's birthday "Beach Blanket" quilt.
When we were visiting our daughter and son-in-law and grand children last year, my SIL reminded me that I had made quilts for everyone but him. LOL So...using fabrics in my stash and some left over from two of his boys tummy-time quilts, I put this together just for him.
They live on the island of Martinique and go to the beach often. I guess he really does NEED a beach blanket.

And since this is a "beach blanket", it seemed only appropriate that it be quilted accordingly. So, in an effort to make it look cool (and expedite the process) it is quilted with a simple 'ocean wave-ish' design. Ok, so I got lazy and just did big cursive "C" swirly things....It is quilted with a varigated white to navy blue colored thread. It shows up better on the back, so here is a close-up of  the quilting on the back side of the quilt.

This quilt was a lot of fun to make. The challenge was in finding pieces of fabric in the stash in large enough quantity and close to the right color to make the squares. I made one big decision that effected the entire look by going with a brown and dark yellow instead of using a light yellow that I had originally intended to use. Two points here....First that light yellow that I chose NOT to use was a very pretty floral and made the quilt stand out vividly...very bright. Point Two...this is for a guy...no frilly girly fabrics allowed (lol) and NO big bright quilt wanted.  SO....I chose to use the brown which although is a little dark for it's placement, did tone down the 'brightness' and give the quilt a more masculine look. Goal accomplished.
This photo shows the blocks close-up...the red/yellow/orange fabric is a coral design, as is the two-tone yellow next to the center. The blue close to the center is a fish and seaweed pring and the bright blue next to the dark blue outter edge is also a fish and seaweed print.
So, now it's off to get this in the mail......
Until next time....

Strolling down the "Street"....

Hello there!
It's another wonderful day strolling down "Easy Street" here at Beachwood Cottage Quilts.

Last week was full of wonderful holiday activites including shopping for just that perfect gift for my husband.(He came along and picked it out! LOL....Hey, it was Bass Pro Shop.) Shopping also included gifts for the our grown children and the grandchildren. Then there was a fabulous pot luck luncheon at the Yarn Diva (she also carries fabric), and a great get together/Christmas party/meet the new puppy at a friends house. Plus golf and fishing because up until today, the weather has been unseasonably warm and beautiful.
So, with  all of this going on, it's a wonder that I got any sewing done! But it happened! And lots of it,too.

When Clue 3 came out for on Friday, I was anything but ready to work on it. I was in the middle of trying to finish up a "Beach Blanket Quilt" for one of my sons-in-law.....yes, I did finish it up....and that will be another post on  here later today (hopefully today).

All the clues/steps for the Easy Street Mystery Quilt have been quick and easy so far. That has been a blessing this year. Lesson to self....next year DON'T try to do so much during the holiday season. Get it done EARLIER!!!... Not sure 'self' is listening. :-)

Clue 3 again used the Easy Angle Ruler to make "64 Shaded 4 Patches".
All pieces cut and ready to assemble.
We cut 2" strips from our purples and then cut those strips into 64 2"corner squares.
And paired up our white strips to make mirror image triangles for the "wings".
Then using the turquoise/aqua fabrics, we cut 3.5" strips and from those cut 64 large half square triangles using the Easy Angle ruler once more.
Quick! Easy!
The above photo shows the stacks of the large triangles, the little white triangles and the squares all awaitig assembly with some already being chained in the machine. You can also see the two "test" subjects that I ran first just to make sure all my cuts were correct and the winged units fit the triangle pieces.

Once the right side 'wing' was attached, the units were lightly pressed and ready to attach the left side. These units fit so well together, they just seem to zip through the machine. Photo below shows left side wing placement for stitching,

 Once all of the winged units were stitched and pressed open, it was time to attach the large triangle pieces. IF...(sometimes that's a really big word) I cut and stitched all of the little wing units CORRECTLY they should just be a perfect fit to the large triangles with the 1/4" seam hitting just right to make the points come out perfectly. (Yeah, I don't use that word a lot.)  I chose to place the large triangle on the bottom and the winged unit on the top to be able to see and sew through the little "X" where the wings and square come to a point. (See photo below.)
 The close-up below shows the intersection where the seem should hit to make that point come out correctly.....the point should not be 'cut' off and not too much white should be showing showing.

Viola! Here is the completed unit. See how the point 'fits' in?
(This unit has only been slightly finger pressed, so it's not laying perfectly flat, but does do justice to the point.)

 So, or maybe that should be SEW....all of Clue/Step/Part 3 units are now finished and stacked for you to see. ...Actually by the time you are reading this, they will be tucked into a little sandwich zip bag to wait patiently for their turn in the big scheme of this MYSTERY!

Sew....until next time....quilt someone happy!
Bye for now.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Week Two on Easy Street

....And the Mystery continues....

Easy Street Mystery Quilt Clue 2 was all about purple geese...flying geese that is. We see a lot of flying geese here on the lake, but never purple geese with white wings.  I love purple!

Ok, ok...so these aren't real live flying geese...... The above photo shows the purple geese with their white wings all cut out and ready to assemble.  The purple geese bodies are stacked in groups of 4. If you look closely at the remaining purple strip piece you can see part of the other color strips at the end. By stacking my purple strips and using the Compaion Angle ruler, I was able to cut 4 at a time. 

The white strips are stacked 4 deep also, BUT as two groups of 2. They are paired with right sides together so that when they are cut using the Easy Angle ruler you get a Right ' wing' and Left  'wing'. (NO politics involved, I promise!)
The above picture shows the 'body' and 'wing' units being chained together. The 'right wing' is being attached first. The 'left wing' has been laid aside (units that are right side up in the messy pile) Once all of the right wings are attached and lightly pressed, the other side will be sewn on in similar manner. 

These Companion Angle and Easy Angle rulers make the geese easy to assemble with the little dog ear missing at the top of the purple 'body' unit and the top of the white 'wing' tips. No more guessing if you have them aligned correctly. The flat tops match up for a perfect unit.
See the nice little flat top?

And here it is pressed open. There is a perfect 1/4" seam allowance at the top! Easy !
It did not take long at all to get all the geese sewn together and their wing clipped (aka dog ears removed).  

The little EXTRA this week was to cut 64 units 2" x 3.5" to get a tep ahead for next weeks clue. Ohhhhh...can't wait to see what that will be!
Here is Clue 2 all completed. 

If you are looking for a fun project, why not join in on the Easy Street Mystery Quilt by Bonnie Hunter. It isn't too late to get started! Come have some fun with us!
Until next time....Kathy