Thursday, July 21, 2011

Loulouthi Tiles Quilts

I love any excuse to make a quilt, as you well know. A coincidence: my very lovely neighbors are expecting their 7th baby later this month. Can you believe it took me until just one week ago to realize that I should make them a baby quilt? Um, hello! I have no idea why I didn't think of it sooner.

And since I didn't want the other kids to feel left out, I decided to make a "family" quilt to give at the same time.

I decided to make both quilts using the Loulouthi Tiles pattern created by the lovely Rachel of Stitched in Color. I just have to take a minute to tell you that I'm in love with this quilt pattern. I'm so mad I didn't think of it myself! My favorite part about quilting is the fabric and I prefer simple patterns that allow the fabric to be the star. And in my world, Rachel's pattern has it all: large squares and rectangles (great for showing off large and small prints), crisp sashing and a design that looks complex but is easy and fast to put together. It's pretty much the perfect quilt! Thanks Rachel!

For the family quilt I chose the medium Loulouthi Tiles pattern:

Loulouthi Tiles Quilt

It took a while to pick out just the right fabrics but I'm so happy with the result. I'm completely in love with this color combination! If I had enough fabric left, I'd make another quilt just like it so I could keep one for myself. I especially love the colorful sashing around the larger rectangles. Rachel's pattern calls for all the sashing to be the same color so you can have space to show off your beautiful hand quilting. But since I was planning to machine quilt everything, I wanted something a bit more dramatic.

Loulouthi Tiles Quilt

It's backed with a Valori Wells flannel that matches one of the prints from the front.

The baby quilt was also super fun to make...I've been itching to use those Farmdale apples for a long time!

Loulouthi Tiles Quilt

I decided to spice it up by using squares to create the large blocks. I had to tweak the size of the rectangles just a bit to get it to work but it wasn't too difficult.

Loulouthi Tiles Quilt

I skipped the batting for this's my new favorite way to make baby quilts since the drape is so soft. The backing is one of Anna Maria Horner's Folksy Flannel prints.

I still can't believe I started and finished two quilts in one week. It helps that I stitched the binding on both quilts entirely by machine. This might be my new thing...I'm getting pretty good at it and it sure is fast!

I hope my neighbors like them...because if they don't, I just might ask for them back. Also, sorry for all the indoor was literally 100 degrees outside and my camera kept fogging up as soon as I stepped out the door. That and I didn't want my neighbors to see the quilts.

This will most likely be my last post before I leave for England for two weeks. I'll see you all as soon as I get back!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

London Calling!

I promised you guys some exciting news and here it is: Ian and I are heading to merry'olde England in less than two weeks!

Echino London

We bought our plane tickets months ago but I was so busy with work and then the shutdown and then all the quilting that I sort of forgot to tell you about my trip. Actually, I've sort of forgotten to even think about my trip. I'm running out of time to get everything done!

Ian and I will meet his parents and sister in London and spend the first week sightseeing and visiting friends. Ian and I are staying on for another week to see any of the sights his parents weren't interested in visiting. We might take day trips to the countryside or stay overnight in Bath. I'd love to tour the lakes, Elizabeth Bennet style...but I'm not actually sure where the lakes are and I'm not sure how we'd get there.

Echino London

Anyway, I'm off to the store to find some appropriate capris and/or skirts for my travels. It's been years since I bought anything new and sadly, my old traveling clothes don't fit anymore. I also want to make a tote bag out of the Echino London print (purchased at Pink Chalk Fabrics). I need to get going! More later!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Kaleidoscope Quilt Top

I finished my Kaleidoscope quilt top the other day:

kaleidoscope quilt top

I'm really happy with the way it turned out. I really love when a pattern emerges once all the blocks are put together...I've always wanted to make a quilt like that. Of course, in order to make one of those, I have to make all the blocks...and you all know I'm not really into making fussy blocks with seams on the bias. But for some reason, these blocks were pretty fun to make. Still, I'm happy there were only 30.

kaleidoscope quilt top

Usually I agonize over fabric placement but this time I just picked a piece from the pile, made sure it wasn't the same fabric as the piece next to it and sewed. I arranged the blocks in pretty much the same way. Maybe that's why the quilt top went together so quickly and why it was so fun to make.

kaleidoscope quilt top

I was super excited to baste the quilt but then I realized I didn't actually have any backing fabric that would match the front. I ordered some orange flannel that I think will work...I might skip the batting in this quilt but I haven't decided yet.

kaleidoscope quilt top

Thanks again to Elizabeth for putting together this awesome quilt along. It inspired me to try a block I've been wanting to make for a long time. I can't wait until my flannel gets here so I can finish this quilt!

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Name Game and a Bit of a Break

Happy Monday morning to you all. I can't believe it's been two weeks since I last posted. My birthday was actually really fun...we spent the afternoon at the King Tut exhibit at the science museum and then grilled a super fabulous dinner with friends and family. The bad news is that I was laid off on my birthday due to the Minnesota state government shutdown. I've mostly been sewing and trying not to spend money. I thought this break would increase my blogging but it had the opposite effect. I've really appreciated the time away from my work computer and haven't wanted to spend any time on my home computer.

But I'm checking in today to let you know that I've been featured on The Name Game on Cindy's blog.

The Name Game

If you ever wondered why I chose Sonnet of the Moon, now is your chance to find out. Thanks for letting me play, Cindy!

I'll be back in a day or two with a finished quilt top and some exciting news. For now it looks like I (and the other 22,000 state employees) won't be called back to work any time soon...but Ian and I are doing fine and the shutdown can't last forever. See you soon.