Houses. Neighborhood. Homes. All the differences that make up our communities. This is what I was thinking about when I was pondering the theme "Houses" for the Curated Quilts Mini Quilt Challenge.
I thought it would be interesting to eventually expand the mini quilts into a series of quilts based on houses. I started with "regular" houses bookended by the wholesome "House of God" and the not-so-wholesome "House of Ill Repute." Then I was thinking of new developments, the following of the rules of sameness in the "Homeowners Association", dense housing neighborhoods to living far away and in more solitude. It was fun to play with the rough ideas on the computer.
For challenge I thought I'd make my original "house of God and house of ill repute" neighborhood. For the structure of the houses I started with the houses from Miss Rosie's Quilt Company "The Village" quilt and made them mini...scaled down to 2" across. I also added some reference to side view angles for roofs and sides of houses.
I quilted in straight lines with the steeple of the church going vertically to emphasize the height and direction of the cross. The binding is a faced binding- my first! Hopefully I'll have time to do some more of the house quilts and grow my neighborhood.
My big learning experience this summer has been starting the Splendid Sampler 2 sew along. It has pushed me to try things I would not have tackled on my own. Luckily there are tutorials and instructions from the block designers on how-to's and techniques. Lots of learning for me on this one! I think its safe to say I need to improve my turn-edge applique skills!
For this sampler I decided to use grays and yellows. I am using mostly fabrics from my Dandi Annie collection for Moda (ships to quilt shops Nov 2018) with the addition of some of the grays from my Blushing Peonies group. The block above is "Point Taken" designed by Susan Ache.
In the "Clamshells" block designed by Helen Stubbings, there is a mix of embroidery and applique. Helen's flowers for embroidery were a different design from these but since I am using a number of my Dandi Annie dandelion fabrics I wanted my flowers to mimic that. I like doing the dandelions so much that I am doing some other needlework projects with those as well! For the clamshells I used my applique glue on the pieces to wrap them around the templates but I mistakenly glued the bottoms too so I had some ungluing and pressing to do. Oops. Like I said, lots of learning on this one. After sewing the clamshells down I was pretty excited to see this all together.
It was the first time I've ever done English Paper Piecing when I attempted the "For the Love" block by Sharon Burgess. I'm sharing this because I think its interesting to document our learning and clearly I'm a beginner on this. Sometimes we are hard on ourselves when our work is not as perfectly matched up and sewn as what we are seeing online by other quilters. We all start somewhere! You can see my center square is really a trapezoid and my sewing is a bit stretched. But I got it done!! Time to say "good enough"!
Applique with circles is also an area that is new for me and I got the chance to do a little practice with some other blocks. But one thing I got to try with this sampler that I'm really liking is Foundation Paper Piecing! I absolutely love the "Flowering Tree" design by Amy Friend! I had my quilt bee friends come over and Greg Stewart kindly taught me how to do FPP for our bee block that month. After that I zipped through this block and I love the look of the tree and the branches. This would be so great as multiple trees through the seasons on a whole quilt!
These are my first 8 blocks and looking forward to doing more and seeing how this gray and gold quilt evolves! Join along by checking www.splendidsampler.com every Thursday when they release a new pattern up to the first 20 blocks. Then get the Splendid Sampler 2 book by Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson to keep sewing along!
Its coming folks! September 15th, 2018. So get your Jelly Rolls ready! I have been mulling over what I am going to make this year and I think a little computer planning and designing is in order. Last year I used my Sliding Shoji Screen pattern which uses solid Bella Jelly Rolls to divide the blocks but I flipped it so the Jelly Roll of Blushing Peonies became the strips and I used solid pink, eggshell, and the Ikat print from Amy Ellis' Serenity collection as the large panels. I loved the result!
In honor of the new National Sew a Jelly Roll day coming up I wanted to share the most recent pictures of last year's project. When I got the quilt back from my longarm quilter, Sally Corona of Corona Quiltworks I loved it even more! The quilting design has a great retro mid century modern feel and lovely flow. When it is on the wall in the foyer it lightens up the space with a calm pretty feel without being overly girly. I recently got this new lamp and I'm liking the feel of these together. Now off to start planning for September 15th...
Blues, teals, robin's egg blue. Having fun trying out my Blockstep pattern in Dear Mum fabrics.
I enjoy looking at the difference in light vs dark backgrounds. The feeling changes completely when the fabrics are against a darker teal vs white.
You can find the new and improved BLOCKSTEP at my shop at www.robinpickensinc.com.
Next week school is back in session and I'll be getting back to a slightly more regular schedule. Although I like the break of summer, I also find I gravitate to the schedule and comfort of my routine once fall is here. My daughter will be moving back into the dorm at college next week as well so the house will soon feel very quiet.
Some fun activities that started this summer were two samplers- Moda Blockheads 2 and Splendid Sampler 2. I haven't typically been super active on Facebook and there is a vibrant and lively community there with the Blockheads page, so I find myself hanging out at Facebook more than normal. As a result of being on Facebook more recently, I realized I should relabel my business page to make it easier to find. It was previously just called "ColorAndQuilt" and I've added my name now so its "RobinPickensColorAndQuilt." Duh!! Why didn't I think of that earlier?? I can be really facebook-challenged sometimes! My instagram feed updates there so if you don't hang out on IG, check me out at facebook at: www.facebook.com/robinpickenscolorandquilt/
But back to Blockheads! I look forward to Wednesdays and seeing what the new block pattern will be and seeing all the beautiful versions people make. When I see how people sometimes add more pieced blocks within parts of the blocks I appreciate how they customize and creatively push the boundaries to make it their own. I'm using blue, green, pink and some yellow in my blocks and keeping it in that range of pretty colors while using fabrics from my Poppy Mae, Blushing Peonies, Dear Mum and Dandi Annie lines. It is really thrilling when I see other people using my fabrics too and in ways I would not have even imagined! What a gift!
These are just a couple of the blocks and I'm loving the mix of sizes in this project. We have 6" blocks up to a 24" block! That is huge! I can't wait to see what the overall layout is going to be and its fun to have it be a surprise. Join along with the Blockheads!
Up next...Splendid Sampler 2 update!
Designer of colorful florals for Moda fabrics. Modern to transitional quilt designer. Illustrator, sewist, crafter.
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