I know its a journey and not a race. But I feel like I can see the finish line. But I'm not there yet. One step at a time...that's how progress happens. These are the things I tell myself when I'm nearing the end and need that extra push!
So a few more blocks here. Above its the Scrappy Checkerboard designed by Cory Yoder. Below its Ribbon Star by Lynne Hagmeier. I'm trying to take stock of what I have and what I need from a perspective of color and size. I saw a great layout on instagram that Susan @quiltingcousin did and I liked the organization of blocks in the overall quilt. I've decided to model my quilt after this layout too.
But first, finishing the blocks. I'm not done yet. But I'm keeping up the effort and I WILL FINISH! As I roll closer to the finish line I've done Fidget Spinner by Lynne Hagmeier and Bella Spinners by Me & My Sister Designs. Also Around the Corner by Carrie Nelson and On Point Star by Stacy Iest Hsu. Sew on!!!
My Christmas quilts featuring my Splendid fabric came back from the longarmer, Marion Bott in Las Vegas (she's @bottmarion on Instagram). Oh I love the textures that get added to the quilts when they have the quilting done! I just want to lightly stroke each quilt and feel the patterns of the sewing.
I'm excited that Splendid is in shops now so you can all work on projects with these too! My next step is to put the bindings on and also make pillow backs and add zippers to the pillow cases (or should I leave them as envelope backs?)
Here is the Showering Stars Table Runner as I'm sewing the binding on. I like the linear pantograph of the quilting. The direction of the lines balances out the long format of the runner and strong patchwork lines of the star trails by going the other direction (horizontally vs vertically).
At the time that I was designing these patterns I had to pick out the binding fabric without having the actual made-up quilt in front of me. That is always a challenge for me- deciding binding recommendations so early in the process (but if it goes in a sales catalog I have to do it early). For most of the quilts in this group I wanted the bindings more subtle and just a complimenting Christmas color, so if the quilt is red, I'm doing a simple green. And in the case of Cardinal's Christmas Wreath, I felt so many prints were on the right and left side borders that a solid or almost-solid was called for.
But when it came to Jubilant Song I had picked the striped fabric for binding and boy, do I love it! Now I wish I had picked a striped binding for Joy and Delight. But my green strips are cut and they are attached to the front, awaiting the hand sewing to the back. I am not going to rip off a whole quilt's binding at this point. But note to future-self, be bold with the stripes!!
I recently posted some scrap bags of Splendid fabric in my online shop. There is a limited quantity so when they are gone, they're gone. And I'll be getting a few quilt kits of Joy and Delight up soon too! But for today, a-binding-we-will-sew!
I, like most quilters/makers, have a number of projects in the works at the same time. Yup. Because they all look so wonderful! I did decide to join in the Bowtie Flower sewalong that Elizabeth Chappell of Quilter's Candy is hosting on instagram. When I saw her quilt on the pattern cover, I knew I wanted to try it with Painted Meadow!
To be honest, in order to join a sewalong right now, I need to feel its something that won't take me hours and hours of long work. I want some projects that are doable and I can get to the finish line. I looked over the pattern and realized that it would fit in to my schedule and I could set up time to do all the cutting, all the HST, all the trimming, etc. Add in chain piecing and I'm there! Plus, I have to admit that sometimes I get bogged down in making my own patterns so it is a breath of fresh air to make quilts from patterns created by other designers.
For my white I am using Moda Bella Solids White Bleached 98. The pincushion is from Wooly Felted Wonders. Isn't it cute?
After deciding which prints I wanted to use (and yes, I mocked it up in the computer using the coloring page that Elizabeth provided- very helpful!) I got to work cutting. I decided to make my Half Square Triangles using an 8-at-a-time method. So my squares I cut for HST were actually 10" to make 8 HSTs. The exceptions were the blocks with bees in them. I fussy cut those so my bees would be center stage in the triangle shape.
I recently bought myself a Martelli turn table and cutting mat. Wow! It is a dream to use. I really enjoy having good tools and look forward to treating myself for a birthday or if I meet a goal I've set.
Next up were the stitch and flip blocks.
When making the stitch and flip blocks, I like to sew an extra seam in the part I am cutting off to make additional Half Square Triangles to use for something else. They are small and cute and I'm not sure what I'm going to make with them yet. I'll trim them up when watching tv some night. I'm thinking of doing a little mini wall quilt with them.
Stacks of blocks are now pressed and ready to go!
I hope you are playing along too. Check out quilters_candy on instagram and hashtag #bowtieflowerquilt and #bowtieflowerqal to see what others are doing!
Can you imagine a meadow with hearty, deeply colorful blooms like the red and pink sunset colors across the sky? This is what I thought of while I visited my mother last summer and we walked through the gardens. The coneflowers were in full bloom in the warm summer sun with their plump centers drawing in the bees and butterflies.
I love the proportions of coneflowers and those big full cones, full of nectar, and colorful petals that hang down with a lovely curve in warm red, fuscia and rich sunset shades. The flowers seem as if they are always looking up to the sky in anticipation of the happy sun or as a welcome for the bumblebees.
The beautiful shape of the coneflower inspired this collection and I couldn’t resist adding in those bumblebees- so plump and fuzzy, just like the flower centers! The fabric group also includes little drawings that show the coneflowers and bees in sweet illustrations or dancing within paisley shapes. Watercolor textures, sprigs of plants and sketchy oval dots compliment the lively group.
Painted Meadow has 4 colorways of cream, pinks, green and teal. It is available in precuts of Layer Cakes, Charm Packs, Jelly Rolls, Fat Quarter Bundles and Mini Charms. It was shown at the Kansas City, MO Quilt Market 2019 with Moda Fabrics and will be shipping to quilt shops in October, 2019.
Enjoy the sunset colors of Painted Meadow with coneflowers and the buzzing of plump bees as you feel the warm summer sun…
I've never been to Kansas City so I was really looking forward to visiting a new city, and being there with my husband and enjoying some BBQ and time away from the daily routine. Market requires numerous weeks of preparation so by the time we get there, I'm ready for a the excitement of the show and seeing lots of quilt people! And did I mention BBQ? Plenty of good eating on the trip! A whole day early (and no missed flights this time!) gave us time to rest, explore the city a little and get some sleep before the big set-up. Yup- barbeque was on the menu and it did not disappoint! braised and bbq'd everything and enjoyed the ambiance of the Power and Light district.
We stayed at the Marriot near the convention center, across the street in the older section that was renovated (the former Muehlebach Hotel). The rooms were lovely and renovated and the lobbies were elegant. I loved that we had the top floor so the ceilings were really high and the light was great! I had a great time taking photos of some of the quilts in the room before set up.
So what can you fit in two suitcases? Turns out you can fit: booth fold up boxes, seed packets, 6 quilts, 6 hangers, a quilted tote, promo flyers and clothes and toiletries for two people for 5 days. Not bad.
From a blank canvas to a quilted world! I had my three new quilt patterns, Beanstalk, Kyoto Steps and Picket on display, made up in my new fabric line, Painted Meadow. The three main quilts on the wall and left quilt ladder were longarm quilted by Marion Bott. Don't you love the textures? The Kyoto Steps on the ladder in teal and the pink and green Picket (seen in hotel room) were longarm quilted by Sally Corona at Corona Quiltworks.
For a little giveaway this time I got coneflower seeds (did I mention my new line Painted Meadown is based on coneflowers??) and made up seed packets. I hope the seeds made it all over the globe and into fresh dirt, ready to grow and bloom!
Sarah Huechteman made up a sample of the Beanstalk quilt for Moda and she made me a little gift with some of the leftovers of the Painted Meadow fabrics! How adorable is this little Bitsy Box?! The pattern is from Ticklegrass Designs. Precious!!
What really makes market amazing for me is the time I have with the Moda people and the other designers. I am so grateful to have this experience and company to work with!
I had a great time seeing shop owners and visiting at the Moda party. Another market done and now its time to plan for the next one!
Oh! And if you are wondering, Painted Meadow will be shipping to quilt shops in October 2019.
More holiday sewing with my new Splendid Christmas line for Moda Fabrics. This time its "Cardinal's Christmas Wreath" which is made from a Layer Cake of fabric and background cream fabric. This is a fun one to make with scraps too- just look for the right mix of reds and greens. This quilt pattern is written for two sizes: the larger one is 54 1/2" x 60" (that's the one in the photos and makes a nice lap quilt or larger wall quilt) and the smaller is 45" x 47 3/4".
This Cardinal reminds me of the dog we had growing up. He would stand, posing for us, in a grand position of attention, looking official and like he was surveying the world. I picture this bird in the same mindset, perched atop this wreath, watching that the Christmas skies are safe for Santa!
If you want to leave the side border panels off and have a more vertical wall quilt, the large would be 36" wide by 54 1/2" long. The small would be 27" inches wide by 47. I think I'll be making the small one up in the more vertical size because I have some smaller wall areas I'd like to put some decoration on when the holidays are here.
The pattern uses simple patchwork piecing and some half square triangles. The main thing to pay attention to is cutting the variety of sizes for the cardinal piecing. I like to label my pieces sometime with a little note I tape or pin on with sizes if I cut them at the same time. I hope you have as much fun seeing the wreath and bird come together as I did! Check this out along with my other new Christmas patterns at your local quilt shop or my online shop! Happy sewing!
Time for COLOR PLAY with the Showering Stars table runner! I was touched to hear that some people were using the Showering Stars twin quilt pattern for making Quilts of Valor. What a beautiful way to give thanks to our Vets! Since I've just recently released the table runner and pillow cover version of the Showering Stars theme, I thought I'd use those files to mock up some color explorations that might help envision the patriotic or other holiday themes.
The first explorations were these two runners and looking at the pillows in red, white and blue (or perhaps a bluish silver added).
Of course the next day I woke up early with more thoughts in my head...
I think the second one down in the group above is my favorite from this group because it mimics the blue of the stars area and red of the stripes in the American flag the closest. I intended these to be color studies for the table runners. But I realized that the table runner is 71" across which is also enough to make a twin quilt for width. If you were to stack about 6 of these you would have a 71" x 96" -ish quilt top. Add a little more borders if desired for a nice sized twin bed quilt!
Or for a nicely sized lap quilt, leave off the very end trails and stack three to make a 57" x 51"-ish quilt. This would also be nice with just the center section (take off the far right and left stars) as a 36" wide wall quilt for the 4th of July. The runner pattern is constructed as the center section first with the right and left star ends added so it would be easy to crop it this way.
But how about some other seasons and holidays??
New Years Eve and the table is set with festive candles...imagine some metallic fabrics in gold and silver sparkling against a deep gray, black or midnight blue. Or springtime greens popping up fresh from the ground. Halloween black, orange and purple stripes for trick or treat fun. And warm and cozy fall colors for a Thanksgiving feast. The stars keep twinkling throughout the year!
The original table runner and pillow covers are made up in Splendid for Christmas and you can see them at my shopify site or scroll on down for previous blog post. Check your local quilt shop for patterns and the Splendid line from Moda Fabrics. I hope this color play was helpful for some showering stars inspiration!
I wanted to create a smaller version of Showering Stars that could be used in home decor for pillows and table decoration. Scaling the stars and trails down to half size made it possible to design with these elements for my Splendid collection in Christmas pillow covers and a table runner.
I find I do most of my holiday decorating with red and the red textured background in Splendid is rich and vibrant. I love it! The whites are the cream texture which has a subtle sheen when you see the white on cream background. Simple patchwork blocks and a few longer strips make the trails and patchwork and flying geese make the stars.
I like playing with the mix of scale by having the double stars pillow and the giant star pillow with a much bigger star. The pattern includes directions for making a simple envelope back for covers and its sized for a nice substantial 26" square Eurosham size.
The table runner is sized 16 1/4" x 71". If you wanted a shorter runner you could crop off the trails on the ends or even just use the center stars with trails (making it 32-36 inches long, depending on if you include the last white blocks on the trails).
One thing that was really touching to find out about my original Showering Stars pattern was that numerous people have made it up in patriotic colors for Quilts of Valor. I love this idea! I've also mocked up these pillow covers and runner into red, white and blues to give some additonal inspiration for those that want to explore a more patriotic theme! I'll share those on the next post!
Check out my three other new patterns that use Splendid on my store at shopify and lets get sewing for Christmas!
Joy and Delight is a new pattern I designed with my Splendid Christmas line for Moda Fabrics. I wanted a quilt that showed off the fun mix of fabrics in a layer cake with decorative frameworks for the blocks. But I also quickly decided it was also a good format for alternating blocks of two fabrics- as shown below- my mistletoe greenery and poinsettias which pop nicely against the saturated red texture in the Splendid fabric line.
For an extra pop of wintery fun I decided to have graphic snowflakes surround the outer border. Afterwards I thought this could even be fun for 4th of July in reference to fireworks! The snowflakes are made with subcutting joined strips so they actually go together rather efficiently. There is something really satisfying about making a big pile of snowflake blocks!
I found the Stripology ruler from Creative Grids was a handy tool for making lots of smaller cuts in an efficient way!
And here are blocks with flying geese and framing in progress.
This is a scrappier looking version of the quilt- the original concept using the mix of a layer cake. On this one the framing around the squares is in two colors- red and green for Christmas- and the snowflakes are in a more olivey green. This is next up on my list to make!
Check out Joy and Delight along with the other three new patterns to go with Splendid in my shopify shop. Lets get some Christmas projects going!!
This group of patterns for Splendid needed a quilt with some larger sections to show off the poinsettias and cardinals without cutting them up to much. I liked the idea of vertical columns that showed a few of the prints with the pointsettias as the main center.
To balance out the large panels, I liked adding smaller pieced blocks, arranged into elegant and lacy compositions, to form as a decorative top and bottom to the columns. Thin sashing, like window edges, run the length of the quilt. The result is a group of three columns, reminiscent of church windows, with light flooding through the stained glass images. They seem grand and ceremonial and festive for a celebration.
Many thanks to The Felted Pear (Susan!) for helping me with this and making those flying geese and HST and assembling the ends!
Nature celebrates Christmas with Splendid. I feel like I can hear the jubilant song of either the church choir or the choir of birds out in the trees. This quilt pattern in mocked up into three color versions in the pattern- cream, red, and charcoal. Although this is shown with Christmas fabrics, I think it would be striking with other large scale prints, like the William Morris fabrics that Moda produces with rich jewel tones.
There are four new patterns I'm sewing for Christmas quilts with Splendid. Check out this and the others: Joy and Delight, Cardinal's Christmas Wreath, and Showering Stars Table Runner and Pillows at my shopify shop.
Designer of colorful florals for Moda fabrics. Modern to transitional quilt designer. Illustrator, sewist, crafter.
Shop Robin's Designs
© Robin Pickens Inc. All rights reserved. No images may be reproduced without permission.