Thursday, July 21, 2011

360 HST later...

And I am finally finished sewing them all together!  I didn't take a picture yet.  It was a lot of work, and a lot of very hot middle-of-July ironing and pressing!  I am sooo glad I'm done with it!  All I need to do is add a border (actually what's next is trimming/squaring the top, sewing a stay stitch around the perimeter, then adding a border) and then I can work on the back!  I actually want to keep the back simple, but may add one square in for a label.

Alright, well here is the top half finish:

I'm quite happy with how it has turned out.  I've been thinking a lot about what type of quilting to do on it, but haven't decided on anything yet.  Any suggestions?

I think I will take a short break from this quilt.  I'm rather sick of looking at/working on it--I really rushed to get the top done so I could use my sewing room to teach a sewing workshop today.  I had thought of trying to finish the quilt by the end of the month, but the next week and half are pretty busy, and I'm quilting a friend's quilt, so it is a good time to take a rest from the HST quilt.  Once I get back to it, I'll like it again and will hopefully have a plan for the quilting!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Update on the HSTs

Since my first post about the HST quilt, I had to wait about a week (since I ordered on a holiday) for the charm packs to come in.  It was enough time to finish up some other little projects I had going, and finish cutting a bazillion 5" grey squares.  As soon as the charm packs arrived I started sewing them into half square triangles.  Then pressing and ironing them (not a favorite task in the middle of July!).  Then I spent several days trimming and squaring each small block...it was so tedious!  All 352 squares were trimmed to 4.5".

Finally done with all 352 of them!

But after considering different size/dimensions for the quilt I realized I would need another 5 squares.  Thankfully I had added some fabric from my stash, and still had a bit left!

Today my sister, Julie, came over to layout the squares into the way she liked. We looked at a few options online, and then started putting them on the floor.  There are fewer of the yellow and white blocks, so we had to rearrange a couple of times.  But we finally ended up with this (which actually required me to make 8 extra blocks, instead of 5):

It is 20 blocks by 18 blocks, so it will finish to about 80"x72", plus I plan to add a border.

This evening we ended up putting the kiddo to bed about 30 minutes early, so I set to work sewing the now 360 blocks together:

It took 10 minutes per row, not too bad!  The bottom rows are not ironed yet.  

So at this rate it will take me nearly 3 more hours to sew the rest of the blocks into rows!  Jeesh!  This quilt is quickly burning me out on small blocks.  But it's coming together beautifully!  Hopefully tomorrow Matt can watch Arden while I do some more sewing.  While all the blocks are laid out on the floor it is not a good play room!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Julie's Half Square Triangle Quilt

A couple of months back greenfairyquilts.com had a "buy anything, get a moda precut for free" deal.  I couldn't pass it up, plus I had been wanting to try the Superior Thread they sell.  I bought a large spool of a medium blue, which I used to quilt the Fourth of July quilt, and really liked it!  Anyway, I got a Prayer Flag charm pack, much to my excitement!  I debated on what to do with it for a while, and finally settled on half square triangles (HST), and since I already have a Prayer Flag quilt:


...I decided to make this one for my sister's birthday present.  Her birthday was July 1st, so I'm already a bit behind.  But when I decided on all this I was in the middle of three other quilts, and told her it'd be done by Christmas.  I also decided I wanted to do a grey quilt, so the HST are Prayer flag and grey:

One charm pack done!

The biggest issue with this quilt is that it has made me break the fabric buying moratorium.  I want to make a twin size (or larger) quilt, so I had to buy another 3 charm packs, and some more grey fabric.  But the HST are calling to me, so I feel like I need to get them out of my system before I can move on.  For months I've been collecting photos/links on Pinterest.com of the many different HST layouts.  This site has some great possibilities.  Once all the HST are made I plan to have my sister over to help decide on a layout.  I can't wait, I think it will be fun to work on this quilt with her!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Fourth of July quilt finished!

Last update here.  I finished it about 1pm today, then threw it into the washing machine with a color grabber sheet (in case any of the red bled).  I like it a lot more now that it's finished than when I did when I was working on it.  Each step helped pull it all together.  It was consistently my squarest quilt to date, and ended up being exactly 65" x 78" before the binding was sewn on.

I really like the red binding! 

As I was putting it all together I was thinking about how much history this quilt has, mostly from before I started working on it.  The hand-stitched nine patch blocks came from my dad's girlfriend, that was helping with an estate sale.  She rescued them from the trash and passed them along to me.  Well, Kathy, I hope I did you proud with them :-)  The rest of the fabric in the quilt, except the binding and backing, were from the same box of fabric she gave me, so quite a bit got used!

Detail of the quilting.  I did varied sized loops.  I wanted them to be tight though, to help add strength to the quilt, since I worry about the hand stitching (which will probably be fine...).

The back is a navy blue, which I kind of wish I had used for the sashing...but oh well, I like it for the backing too.

The label, not quite as nice as I would have liked, but machine sewing the binding on was a little tricky around the corners.

So now I have no quilts in progress!  But I just ordered some fabric for the next one, and while I wait I think I will figure out all the details for a second-next one.  Gotta keep busy!