Category Archives: baby quilt

Wednesday WIP Report

A little of this and a little of that – this has been the routine in my sewing room this week. For the most part, I have been quilting the baby quilt for my almost-here grandbaby. She is due March 3rd and I know my daughter-in-law has reached the point where she is done being pregnant. Those last few weeks are just miserable. I hope this little girl makes an appearance soon! The quilt top is finished and the quilting is nearly finished.

The quilting is coming along fine though. It is hard for me to sit and quilt for long periods of time. My neck becomes very grumpy if I sit for longer than 1/2 hour or so. It is better this way. I break it up and get other things done in between. I have been quilting a flower on each HST and a little heart on the sashing between the squares. So cute.

The hearts are a bit on the wonky side but such is life. I have a feeling the baby won’t be too critical of her Grammy’s stitching.

I have jumped in on a quilt along. It is hosted by Maureen Cracknell and Sharon Holland, both are designers for Art Gallery Fabric.  They are calling it the Sewcial Bee Sampler. A block design is released each Wednesday and today is week three. If you are interested, there is plenty of time to catch up.

 

With each week, there are giveaways for those who participate. Needle & Foot will be sponsoring two of the giveaway Fridays; one in June and one in July!! Here is the pull I selected for the Quiltalong.

I am using the rest of my fat eighth collection of Fleet and Flourish (designed by Maureen Cracknell). I added a fat quarter bundle of solids from the Pink Castle subscription I received for my birthday. I am being very judicious with the Fleet & Flourish and hoping I have enough. We shall see!

The first three blocks look great!

Each block is framed but when I got to the third block, I decided to wait before framing it. I am wondering about my choice of gray and navy blue as frames. So, I need to ponder that one for a bit.

Ok – that is the update for now. Projects are moving right along. 🙂 Hope the same is true for you!  Linking to Let’s Bee Social and Needle & Thread Thursday. Links are available at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

 

 

Knock Knock, Who’s There?

I had a finish this week! Remember I did some pattern testing for Sarah of Sarah Goer Quilts? I was able to quilt and bind it over the last week or so. The quilt is just adorable.  If you would like a copy of this pattern, click over to Sarah’s blog and sign up for her newsletter. I just read the second newsletter and I am enjoying them.

This quilt has been a multi-faceted project for me. It began with pattern testing the new pattern for Sarah. I made the quilt with fabrics from the Fiesta Fun line (which I just happen to carry in my shop!) I chose the Fiesta Fun fabric so I would have something to display the brightly colored fabric. When I looked at the quilt top, I knew it would be a fun one to quilt. The quilt is filled with big open spaces to play with. At about the same time Fil-Tec provided me with a lovely spool of white Glide thread to play with.

I decided to quilt the floral block and the striped blocks with the white spool of Glide.  Wow. I loved it! Glide is a polyester thread with a very pretty sheen to it.  It was a dream to quilt with – honestly, just amazing. It is very clear where the thread earned its name – I felt very little pull when I was quilting. I will absolutely stock up on a few more colors. Ok – back to the quilting. For the floral block, I basically outlined some of the flowers and leaves. Very simple and quite fun. For the striped blocks (made with the adorable Happy Streamers fabric from Art Gallery) I followed the pattern of the stripes, stitching on the white space between the streamers. When the fabric is as busy as this Happy Streamers is, I think it works well to keep the quilting simple.

 

Then I worked on the green background. I used a spool of Mettler thread to quilt this because I had a spool that worked well. Honestly though, I am not a huge fan of quilting with Mettler. It gives off quite a bit of lint and I fight the tension more when I use Mettler. But I had a good time quilting this. For the inner border I used large, free form flowers.

On the outer border, I did a an organic wavy vine with small flowers, bumblebees and butterflies.

For the bees and butterflies, I found inspiration at The Inbox Jaunt. Lori Kennedy has a vast library of tutorials for different quilting motifs. I think the bees and butterflies are so cute. Some of the butterflies are a bit lopsided, which adds a lovely touch of whimsy to the quilt (right?). Finally, on the block between each section of directional fabric, I quilted a cross hatch pattern.

The backing was cut from a sheet that I thrifted a long while back. I think the bright, primary colors work well with the top.

The binding is a cheerful print from Art Gallery, Squared Elements in Mandarin. Guess what? I have it in my shop! 🙂

I am happy to call this one done. Bright and colorful, perfect for these gray, rainy days we have been having. (But I am not complaining. I welcome the rain!!)

I would like to thank everyone for your support of my shop. I really appreciate it. The discount code for Needle and Foot readers is good for just a few more days. Enter  NANDFREADERS15 follow meand receive a 15% discount on orders of $5.00 or more. This code is valid through February 12th.  Next week there will be a giveaway on Instagram. If you , keep an eye out for that. If you don’t, now might be a good time to start!  😉

Linking to my favorites. Check the list at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Pattern Testing a Great Beginner Quilt Pattern

I have followed Sarah Goer’s blog, for a long while now. We both began blogging around the same time and somehow we became blogging buddies. Sarah is crazy busy these days. A stay at home mom of two little ones, she also blogs, quilts, and spends a lot of time teaching her two (very young) children to quilt. Now she is adding pattern design to her list of talents. When I heard she was soon to release her first pattern, I threw my name in the hat to be a pattern tester for her.

This is the second quilt pattern I have tested. Last year I tested for Mihaela of A Beautiful Day. You can read about that here if you like. Sarah’s pattern is very different from Mihaela’s Urban Folk Quilt pattern. She wanted to develop a pattern for beginner quilters. I think this design is just perfect for new quilters. It has very basic cutting and piecing which ensures success. That is just what a new quilter needs so they will gain confidence and feel good about their progress. Sarah did an excellent job with the pattern. Her instructions are very clear and easy to follow.

 

I chose to make Sarah’s pattern with this colorful bundle of fabric from the Fiesta Fun line produced by Art Gallery Fabric.  Sarah’s pattern uses directional fabric to create some movement within the design. A focal fabric is placed in the center and the directional fabrics surround it. This pattern came together in an afternoon. I cut it and pieced most of it the day before we traveled to Toronto. Because of its simplicity, I think this would be an excellent pattern for quilting instructors teaching a Basic Beginner Quilting class.
I love the bright colors used in this quilt. The top finished at 36 inches square; perfect for a baby quilt. I have some fun ideas on how I want to quilt it. Maybe with a spiral? Maybe a spiral that begins in a corner and works its way across the quilt? Time for some doodling to figure out which motif to go with and then there is the torturous decision about thread colors (never an easy one for me). I also need to dig through my stash and find a backing fabric. I do have the perfect binding though, a bright polka dot fabric. Hopefully I will get it quilted soon. The size is reasonable and won’t take too long to do.

This pattern will be given to anyone who signs up for Sarah’s newsletter. Her first issue will be published next week. If you are interested, you can sign up here. I am looking forward to receiving the first issue.

Linking to my favorites this week. See the list at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Fleet & Flourish- A finish

Fleet and Flourish is a gorgeous line of Art Gallery Fabrics designed by Maureen Cracknell. I was lucky enough to receive a set of fat eighths of this line from my kids for my 2015 birthday. It was one of the monthly shipments of the fat eighth club at Pink Castle Fabrics. (Pink Castle never disappoints!!) I love this set and really had a tough time cutting into it. But that is so silly. What good does gorgeous fabric do for me if it is sitting up on a shelf in the closet?

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I decided to use it to create a mid-size quilt; either to be used as a baby quilt or a wall quilt. It has been a long while that I have looked at the large star quilts that float around Pinterest. I have several pinned and decided to pick one and make it. (If ever you are in need of ideas, you are welcome to check out the bazillion pins I have collected over time.) This was not the first star quilt I have made. Back in the early 1980’s I made a large star quilt for a queen size bed for my parents. unfortunately, I don’t have pictures of it but I remember it was navy, maroon, and cream colors. (It also faded terribly because of the large windows they had in their bedroom at the time.) I decided it was time for another one – though on the smaller side.

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I used the tutorial at Diary of a Quilter to look at dimensions. Her blocks were a bit bigger than mine. Having the bundle of fat eighths (which measure 9″x18″ each) set a limit to what size I could use. I cut 9 inch blocks and then sub-cut them into triangles. The four corner blocks were made with 8 1/2″ squares. After playing with the colors, I stitched the triangles together and squared them into 8 1/2″ squares.

This very simple project is a perfect use of this fabric as many of the prints have a bold scale such that leaving the pieces rather large shows it off well. Aren’t the colors just gorgeous? I am a huge fan of Maureen Cracknell and there isn’t a line of hers that I don’t love! As an added bonus, I still have a number of pieces left from the bundle. More Fleet and Flourish to play with!

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Once the star was built, I put a simple 2 1/2 inch border around it to make it just a bit bigger. I used my walking foot to quilt the star with soft, wavy lines. Then I stitched a couple of straight lines through the border. I think I may add one more line on the inside of the border.

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The border worked to enclose the star and to show off this scrappy binding.

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Doesn’t the binding just tie everything together?  For the backing, I used the same neutral fabric as the border. It is actually a batik fabric but doesn’t really look like one to me.

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At 36″ x 36″, this is a lovely baby quilt or would be pretty hanging on a wall. I have listed it in my Etsy shop and hope someone will snap it up soon.

 

Linking to my favorite places, all of which are listed at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

 

Whole Cloth Baby Quilt

This week I finished up a baby quilt that I started about a month ago. It was a very simple and fun project but it took a bit to get it going. A while back, my niece called me and asked if I would make a quilt for her to gift to her best friend who is soon to have her first baby. We talked for a while about what she wanted. Greens, lavender and grey were the colors she was looking for and the nursery features elephants as a theme.

My niece then sent me some links to quilts she saw on Pinterest. Back and forth we texted, looking at all sorts of ideas. Finally she decided that she really wanted a quilt made from Valorie Wells’ Marrakech line. This was going to take some searching as this adorable fabric is out of print now. I searched extensively on-line without any luck. I continued the search by reaching out on Instagram and Facebook without any luck. Still determined, I kept looking. My next approach was to look at Etsy sellers that were selling items made with this fabric. Once I found a seller, I emailed the person asking if they had any of the fabric remaining in their collection. Mission accomplished! I found a seller that had the fabric and she sold me a 1.5 yard cut. Bingo! Thank goodness for the internet and for the generosity of that Etsy seller.

When the fabric arrived, I started to think about quilting it. I reached out to Yvonne of Quilting Jetgirl because she has done some amazing quilting and I like her style. She gave me several ideas to think about. It was such a tough decision. I kept thinking it was an opportunity to really practice some cool quilting. But take a look at the fabric. It is crazy busy – colorful, lots going on in the print, and those amazing elephants. The fabric is the star of this project. I realized the quilting isn’t even going to show. I finally decided to just keep it very simple.

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To select a backing fabric, I took pictures of several fabrics that I thought worked well.  My niece chose a basic gray polka dot. Once that decision was made, I got the quilt basted and ready for quilting. Using a pale green Mettler thread, I did a loose meander all around the elephants. It was a breeze and really enjoyable to quilt over those flowers and in between the elephants.

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Once that was done, I outlined each elephant with purple. It is quite difficult to see from the front but the quilting does show nicely on the back.

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I have never made a quilt using a piece of fabric for the top (as opposed to piecing it) but it works perfectly in this situation. Cutting up a fabric with this scale of print just wouldn’t make sense.

I used this purple print for the binding. I bought it on a sale table and never thought to look and see what it was? But it’s cute and it works.

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I hope my niece is pleased and that this quilt is loved and used by sweet Olivia who will be born in a few months. I can happily check this off of my Q4-FAL list for the link up at She Can Quilt.

Hoping you all have a great weekend. We have rain in the forecast which is always nice. I am hoping to do some preparation (aka house cleaning) for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.

 

Linking up with my usual favorites. Find their links at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Sweet Baby Quilt Finish

I love this quilt. It is simply sweet and joyful.  It came together quick as anything and that is satisfying too. My niece is expecting her third child in January. She is such a wonderful mom to her two daughters. She has a huge balancing act to juggle these days with a busy career as an attorney in the Bay Area, mom to two girls ages 3 and 5 and a baby due in a few months. As with their first two babies, they have chosen not to find out the gender of this baby so I kept this project unisex as far as color schemes go. I am excited to meet this baby and especially to hear the name that she/he will be given. My niece’s husband is from Ireland and their girls have beautiful Irish names (Ciara and Roisin). I expect this baby will have an equally special name.

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For the first time, I used Hobb’s Heirloom batting, an 80/20 cotton and polyester batting. It has a different feel;  lighter in weight and a bit puffier. I stippled it with a wide, open pattern to keep that lofty feel.

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Another satisfying bit about this project is that it required not one trip to the store. I had every bit of this in my stash. From charm squares to background fabric and from backing to batting and binding – it was all from my stash. That is fantastic.  All too often I end up buying fabric for this or that and to just pick from what I have and get a sweet quilt as a result; that is what it is all about. (Lately, I have really been thinking about the amount of fabric I have accumulated over the past three years. It is time to use it. There are so many pretty projects waiting for me in that closet!)

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The backing is a cute text print that has been languishing on the shelf for a good two years. It is from a line called 8 Days a Week and was put out by Windham fabric. I only had one yard of it so I added a top and bottom border in this pretty cheddar yellow solid that I thrifted a while back. I think it is adorable and this baby will be one step ahead learning to read cursive at such an early age. 😉

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The binding is a Riley Blake print that I purchased a while ago on a whim. Fortunately, the colors worked perfectly with this quilt. More of that cheddar yellow, some blue and green tones that are just right.

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The icing on the cake is that I actually labeled the quilt. (I never think to do this!!)  I framed the label with the binding fabric. (I blurred out their last name for privacy.)

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And now comes the part where I tell the maddening part of this whole project – it is that darn quilty math. When I cut the triangles for the side setting and corner setting triangles, I cut them too small. I didn’t see this until after I quilted the whole thing. So every. single. point is cut off with from the binding. Go ahead, take a look – it’s quite apparent. I feel terrible because while this child will be able to read cursive and recite the months of the year, he/she won’t know that a square has four points….  Ok. That is enough negativity. It is a sweet quilt and I know my niece will love it.  That is all that matters.

 

Linking to my favorites – find them at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Fastest Quilt in the West

A few weeks before Christmas I wrote a post about this baby quilt top that I made using orphan blocks purchased at a little  shop in town. I added some solid blocks and borders and created it in a matter of a couple of hours. This week it is a finish; a satisfying, bright, cheerful finish!  It was a joy to put someone’s blocks to good use.

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I spent quite a bit of time deciding how I wanted to quilt this. It was a perfect slate for practicing but I wanted to stay with a theme that a child would enjoy. As I tend to do, I turned to Lori Kennedy’s site, The Inbox Jaunt, for inspiration. Her site overflows with inspiration and tutorials for all sorts of motifs. Please take a look if you haven’t yet seen her site. You will surely find something that motivates you to play with some FMQ. At first I stitched turtles. Lots of turtles. They were cute but mine didn’t have enough personality. I tried kitties. Same thing. I liked them but I didn’t love them. A little more time spent found me stitching dragonflies and bumblebees, again, very cute but not what I wanted. Then I found her birds. I combined two tutorials. This one called Baby Birds and this one called Spring is in the Air. These were so much fun to stitch. Lori’s quilting is near perfection and as such, very precise. Mine… not so much. I like to sketch the design and go back and forth, filling in as I like.

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I love them. I drew a wavy line for the branch and from there I just stitched. I think they are sweet simplicity.

This quilt is a busy one. There is a lot of color and movement with the layout of the HST blocks. Because I just had this incomplete set of blocks, it was difficult to piece it in a fashion that made sense. In an effort to keep it relatively calm and avoid having any child that plays with this quilt being overcome with dizziness, I kept the quilting simple on the main body of the quilt. I think this allows the baby birds to be a calming point of focus and the multicolored part of the quilt is less overwhelming. Before I started to  quilt it I stitched in the ditch along the length and width of the rows of blocks. I wanted to be sure that the quilt was solid before I worked on the birds, especially since they are front and center on the quilt. After thread sketching the two birds and the branches, I worked on the plain blue squares. At first I was going to do simpler birds but it seemed like too much. Instead, a simple cross hatch worked out wonderfully.

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I quilted the HST blocks along the seam lines. The purple border was fun. I played with Lori’s tutorial, Do the Twist and came up with this. My twist is elongated and filled the border quickly.IMG_20160112_4455

The green border was quilted with simple straight lines that I allowed to cross in each corner. No marking needed – nice and simple.

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The backing and binding were from a piece of yardage I have had in my stash for over twenty years! I remember buying it at a WalMart when we lived in Pennsylvania so that dates it to anywhere between 1992-1994. It was in a clearance bin and I probably paid a few bucks for several yards. I love that I finally found a use for it and it looks perfect with this quilt. The quilting doesn’t really show on the busy print but the colors (particularly the shade of green) couldn’t be better.

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The binding is machine stitched on both front and back so it should hold up for lots of laundering. I have not yet washed it and with the bright batiks used for the HST’s, I will put a lot of Color Catchers in with the wash. Crossing my fingers that nothing bleeds.

I am actually a bit sad to give this one away because of the birds but really, it will be better to have it loved by a child than sitting in my sewing room.

Linking to Freemotion by the River, Let’s Bee Social, Freemotion Mavericks, Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Finish it up Friday. All links can be found at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Thrifting SCORE

I went to a few of my favorite thrift stores last weekend. While I was out I also shopped at Humble Fabrics, it’s not really a thrift store, because she sells both new and “pre-owned” fabrics. It is, however, one of my favorite places to hunt for unusual fabrics. Last weekend I found an abundance of both new and pre-owned fabrics.

My favorite score has to be this set of quilt blocks! Two rows of four were stitched together.

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There were also these three additional blocks.

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I was thrilled to find them in a tub of scraps! The tub mainly holds small pieces that are not big enough to fold and put on the shelves. I don’t usually rummage through this but one of the quilt blocks caught my eye.  I dug through it and was able to find two pieced strips containing four blocks each.  The piecing is lovely – great points and tight stitching. Before I took these pictures (which I apologize for because they were taken at night, indoors. Forgive me. 😉 ) the blocks were labeled – A-1, A-2 etc. So I could sort of tell where the quilter was headed. However I wasn’t able to place the blocks as they were intended. Having only a few of them, I just did what I could. It looks good though!

When I got home, I pressed them and played around a bit. Finally I decided to piece them for a baby quilt to be donated. I love the bright colors. In the center I used two blocks from a set of hand dyed fabric that I won last year in a giveaway for RSC14 over at So Scrappy. They were made by Vicki Welsh. Her work is fantastic.

The squares finish out at 8″ which means that the body of the quilt comes to 24 x 36″. I felt that was too small even for a baby quilt so I played around with various ideas for borders.

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The left side with the square patched border looked way too busy.  On the right was a piece of blue and black print.  I rejected that one because it was too dark and I wanted to stick with solids and batiks (like the body of the quilt.)

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After trying a number of borders, I decided on this combination of purple (Moda Marbles line) and solid green. Softer than the others I tried and remains neutral (so fine for either a boy or girl).

 

Here is the end result, made with thrifted blocks and fabric from my stash. It finishes at approximately 33 x 42″.

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We are having a rainy day (Yahoo!) so I had to tape this to the wall for photos. Not the best but good enough to give you the idea.

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While I am very excited to finish this up, I have to set it aside and finish up some Christmas secret sewing. I have the backing and binding all ready to go, so after the holidays I will finish it up and donate.  I know about Project Linus but are there other nice organizations to donate baby quilts to?  If you know of one, leave it in a comment for me.  Thanks so much and have a wonderful weekend!

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the giveaways on Sew Mama Sew.  You can enter my giveaway until Sunday night. Take a peek!

Linking to Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Crazy Mom Quilts – links for both are at the top of the page, under Link Ups

Mixed Bag of Updates

I want to give a couple of updates on past posts. They are both heartwarming to say the least! Here goes:

Remember the post about the yellow and gray elephant quilt that I made for a friend several months ago? To recap, my daughter-in-law’s brother and his wife had been trying to have a baby for a very long while. After many miscarriages, they finally decided to take an alternate route and use a surrogacy firm. This firm is located in India and it was a huge undertaking but it speaks to their determination to have a child. You might want to read more about it on my blog, here, or on Margot’s blog, Find Your Spark. (I have given you the link to her home page, rather than a specific post. There are many posts on the process as she went through it and it is a wonderful read.)

Here is the latest! Margot and TJ’s daughter, Emmerson Kate, was born in September! It is hard to believe that she is already one month old. This baby is such a miracle. Margot and TJ traveled to India about a week before Emmerson was born so they were there for the birth of their baby. That was such an exciting day. Pictures were being texted from India to the East Coast and then to the West Coast. The first pictures of Margot holding Emmerson brought tears to my eyes.  It took a few weeks to process the paperwork and get Emmerson’s passport but as soon as that was completed, they were able to fly back to the States and settle into their new life as a family of three.  Margot sent me a few pictures of Emmerson with the quilt I sent her.

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She is just adorable. Here she is on the back side of the quilt.

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She is such a sweet girl. I wish this family joy and happiness. Margot continually says that she is blessed to have Emmerson. That is certainly true.  It is also true that Emmerson is so blessed to have such wonderful parents in Margot and TJ.

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Update number two is about the Ashes to Beauty project.  At the end of September I wrote a post about a project to help the quilters in Northern California who had lost their homes and belongings in the Butte Fire. I put out a call for quilters to make pastel colored, 10″ blocks with a heart appliqued on each one. It was wonderful to see the number of readers who made blocks and/or put the word out to others. One reader posted it on a Facebook page for a quilt guild in Ohio and they responded with blocks. A few days ago I received an email update on the project. Here is what Kerri (the project coordinator)had to say:

THANK YOU to everyone who made Ashes To Beauty heart blocks.  We stopped counting at 500 and there are still many more.  We have more than enough to make 9 quilts for ladies who lost everything in the fire.
We received blocks from all over the country and as far away as New York, Ontario, Canada, and Hawaii.  Needless to say I am overwhelmed at your generosity, kind words for me and the ladies who will receive the quilts and the obvious love and care that went into your blocks.  Also for generous cash donations for battings and backings and supplies, etc.  One gal who was evacuated but her home did not burn made lovely labels for each quilt. 
Again- THANK YOU so much.  God does truly console the hurting and turns ashes into beauty and many times uses us to accomplish it.   We have begun sewing the blocks together and they are wonderful.
I’ll take some photos and send them along later.
I think it is just awesome that they received so many blocks! Thank you to all that participated and sent in blocks or told others about the project!  If I receive pictures of the quilts, I will post them later on.
Finally, last but certainly not least, thank you all for the prayers and good wishes you offered up for my mom. She is really doing well. It seems like she gets a bit stronger each day. We are all so happy to see her up and walking (still with the support of a walker). She is now doing the work of healing and resting and going to myriad post-op doctor visits. My sisters and I are taking turns staying up at Mom and Dad’s to help with errands, cooking, etc. In a strange way, this is sort of the silver lining for me. We don’t all get together very often, but with everyone coming and going to help out at mom’s, I get to see one, if not two, of my sisters each week. (Mom and I live about 15 miles apart.) I think I need to convince my mom to keep this visiting daughter/nurse thing going on as long as possible! 😉
Well, it is the end of October and I have done little to no quilting. Clearly I didn’t complete my ALYOF goal for this month! I had hoped to sandwich and quilt the Kaffe Fassett jelly roll quilt I made. But it is still hanging in the closet, untouched.  I had also planned to complete the brown row of blocks for my Classic Stitches BOM quilt. I have completed only two of those little blocks so far. But it feels like life is calming down now and I think I will be getting back into the routine soon. So what have you accomplished this month?? I would love to hear.

Love and Good Luck Rolled Up in a Quilt

This is the greatest story and it led to the sweetest quilt I have made yet. Get your tissues ready!

My daughter-in-law, Naomi, has a wonderful family. (Side note, isn’t it cool that when my son married, I gained not just my DIL but also some really nice friends from her family??)  Included in her family are her mom, two brothers and her sister-in-law. Just today I finished an adorable quilt for her sister-in-law, brother and the baby they are expecting in September. The story of this baby is pretty darned amazing.

Margot and TJ (these are their real names – Margot blogs at Find Your Spark and uses their names publically so I have done the same) have been trying to have a baby for years. This has been a really rough time for them. Margot has been pregnant numerous times and has miscarried at various stages of pregnancy. (This post tells part of her story.) It has been really painful for both of them. I can relate somewhat to this sort of pain. I miscarried a child a long while back. It was my third child and I lost the baby at 14 weeks. It was a painful experience that took some time to grieve. But this happened to me only once. And it was after having two healthy babies and before having two more healthy babies. Margot has gone through this repeatedly and has not (yet) had the joy of holding her baby or bringing the baby home. That sort of pain and frustration is truly torturous.

After years of this, they decided last December to take an alternative route to their goal of having a family. Margot and TJ are working with a surrogate. You can read all about their decision and experience on her blog – the story of the surrogacy begins with this post.  The surrogacy agency they are using is located in Mumbai, India. To say that 2015 has been an exciting year for them is a huge understatement. They went to India at Christmas last year and were able to achieve a successful surrogate pregnancy. They have been in constant communication with the agency and the surrogate mother and everything is going along perfectly. Their sweet baby is due to arrive in September. Margot and TJ will be going back to India in several weeks to wait for the birth of their baby. I am so dang happy for them.

When a quilter knows a new baby is coming there is only one way to respond, right? Today I mailed off this quilt to New York and I am hoping that it brings great joy to Margot and TJ.

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I know that they are incorporating elephants into the baby’s nursery. Elephants are a symbol of good fortune in India and I am pretty sure that Margot and TJ will be forever grateful for this woman who has given of herself to birth their child for them. Good fortune? Oh yeah. In India, elephants  represent Ganesha, one of the most important gods in Hinduism. Ganesha is the god of success and the destroyer of evil and obstacles – perfect! For more details on this, here is a site to read. With elephants being symbolic for their family, I used that as the theme for the quilt.

The pattern is a simple stripe with the two focus fabrics cut in widths ranging from two to six inches. Just like the green and white quilt that I made a few weeks ago, I have the stripes arranged from narrow to wide widths, in alternating order. The pattern is Firefly, by Canoe Ridge Creations. I went with a color scheme of gray and yellow. They don’t know the sex of the baby so these colors are gender-neutral.  Finding this elephant print, “Oh Boy” by Riley Blake was a perfect choice for the backing and binding.

IMG_20150722_3578 Those tiny elephants are sweet in every way. The yellow dot on the front is from the “Mixology” line by Studio for Moda. I can’t honestly remember which gray I used. My favorite part of the quilt is the elephant that I thread sketched at the bottom, on the widest gray stripe.

IMG_20150722_3577To create this little guy I took the backing fabric and made of copy of it on my printer/copier. I kept enlarging it until the size felt right. Then I cut him out and traced a rough shape right on to the quilt. (Actually I made several of them on practice fabric first.) It is hard to tell from the picture but I used three different shades of gray thread so that the elephant would have some definition. I love him. (Why do I keep calling the elephant ‘him’? Is that an omen for Baby Guy? We will know in just two short months!)

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To quilt this piece, I used organic wavy lines that were sewn with my walking foot. I didn’t space them too close as I wanted it to be really soft when washed. The binding is double fold as usual, and I machine stitched it to the front and back. Going for baby-proof durability here. After I washed it, the quilt measured 36″ x 36″. Hopefully this quilt will be used and washed and then used some more. It will hold up well for outings to the park, rolling around on the floor, tummy time, and then eventually fort making, pretend play, and so many naps.

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A quilt filled with good fortune and love all rolled up in one for a very special baby.

Linking to Lorna at Let’s Bee Social and Amanda Jean at Crazy Mom Quilts.