March is going to be an exciting month! Today my sweet grand daughter is celebrating her 3rd birthday! Then later this coming week, her little sister will make her entrance to this world of ours! My daughter in law is scheduled for a C-Section on Thursday assuming the labor and delivery department isn’t overwhelmed with other babies arriving that day. I am so excited to see this baby and to learn her name. My son and his wife like to know the gender ahead of time and they save the name to be announced when the baby arrives. However I admit to being a little bit pesty and ask all the time what her name will be. They secretly roll their eyes and don’t tell me. So, a few more days and I will see pictures and know her name! Woo Hoo!
In quilting related news however, I do have a goal for this month. The stack of Mercyful quilts over at Mercy Hospital is terribly low at the moment so I am sewing madly, trying to get one quilted and finished for them. (If you aren’t familiar with Mercyful Quilts, please click here and read more about this wonderful program.) I had this top folded up and waiting to be finished. I had made it some time ago as part of a blog hop celebrating the release of Modern Plus Quilts by Paige Alexander and Cheryl Brickey. But I never finished it.
I started quilting it yesterday (after a long migraine siege this week). This morning I finished a series of straight lines through the patchwork in a coral/pink thread. Now I am pondering the wide brown and green stripes. I haven’t decided what to do there.
Finishing this quilt is my monthly goal for Patty’s link up at Elm Street Quilts. I hope to get it finished up this week so they will have another quilt on the shelf. If anyone has a lap size quilt that needs a home, I would love to bring it to Mercy Hospital. Just remember, no juvenile fabrics as they treat only adults. That is really the main stipulation.
Last, but certainly not least, would you like to see the cutest little girl ever? She got her first haircut this morning and she now looks like she is ready for kindergarten (but she is only three!) The first haircut seems to makes the child age a couple of years. She looks much more a little girl and less a toddler. Happy birthday sweet girl!
Have you set a goal for this month? Let me know! I will be back in a bit to share the news of my second grand baby! Can’t wait!!
The release of Modern Plus Sign Quilts, written by Paige Alexander and Cheryl Brickey is being celebrated with a blog hop this week and next. I am so happy to take part in celebrating this book. I have long been a fan of plus quilts and made one a while back. I called it Positively Floating and you can see it here. Adding a book devoted to modern interpretations of plus quilts is the perfect thing for my collection of quilting books.
There are a couple of things I really appreciate about this book. One is the ease of most of the patterns Paige and Cheryl designed. I am not usually one for fussy quilts with tons of pieces to cut and points to match up. While there are some advanced, challenging patterns in the book, there are also lots of options for simpler designs. Also, there is a nice write up on the history of plus quilts which I really enjoyed. Finally, with many of the patterns, the authors included an illustration of a suggested layout for cutting the pieces such that you get the most out of the fabric needed. This is really helpful for me as I just don’t have a strong ability to see spatial relationships and often (more often than you’d think) will cut my pieces and find I don’t have quite enough fabric. This is because I don’t always choose the most efficient cutting plan. Part of me attributes this to the fact that for years I sewed clothing, not quilts. Clothing patterns always show the best way to lay out the pieces on the fabric – so I never had to figure this out for myself. Anyway, I think this was a great addition to the quilt book and you don’t see it in many books that are published.
Let’s move on to the quilt I made. This is the pattern called Postage Plus. It is based on a postage stamp quilt (basically small patchwork) used to build the plus. The oversized plus is set into a bold pattern of stripes. This gives a very modern result. The book shows a quilt with a gray and white background which is looked really clean. When I chose to make this pattern, it was so I could use up an older Moda jelly roll that I purchased from a destash last year over at Academic Quilter. Using strip piecing with a jelly roll made this quilt a very simple project to assemble.
The quilt came together so quickly. I love using the stripes to bring out the brown and green shades in the patchwork. The colors make me think of ice cream for some reason. Lime sherbet or coffee ice cream, which would you choose? I would go for coffee ice cream every time!
You might notice I am sharing a quilt top, not a finished quilt. If you are a fan of Instagram, you probably saw the posts where I was unhappily removing a large amount of long arm quilting gone bad. Ugh! I took this quilt top and loaded it on a long arm at my friend’s house. For whatever reason, I couldn’t use her machine and obtain a good result. It just looked horrid. I am far from a perfectionist and will often leave issues such as wobbles, mistakes, or points that don’t quite work out in the quilt. (Maybe I am too lazy to fix things like this). But this was bad. Even the lazy quilter in me couldn’t just ignore it. So I stopped, after quilting about 25% of the top, removed it from the frame, took it home and unpicked it. Really, it wasn’t too awful a task and I am happy I fixed this.
I am eager to load it on the machine at the same shop where I have been renting time. I have an appointment on Friday of this week and will be able to quilt this up then. Off topic here, but take a look at the blue skies we enjoyed yesterday. It was a gorgeous day and I am lucky to have taken photos then. Today it is fierce, pouring rain – not a day to be outside. Sure changed dramatically over night!
In closing, I strongly recommend Modern Plus Quilts. The book is top notch with creative patterns of varied complexity , nice tips and clear information – a book well done. The blog hop goes on all of this week and through next week. Paige and Cheryl are offering giveaways each day so be sure to hop over there and enter the giveaways. Lots of fun happening in blogland these days!