Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Jennifer: My First Stacked Coins Quilt

Lise's Quilt

When I'm not quilting or cooking, I work for the provincial government here in Ottawa as a daycare centre inspector. There are only six of us for the region, and we are a very tight group. So when my colleague Lise announced her retirement, it was bittersweet. I decided right away to make Lise a quilt, but my time was limited. I decided on the stacked coins design because I knew I could do it quickly.

Lise's Quilt

I was really excited to try the white as sashing and backing because I've been seeing it in so many places lately and I always love how it looks. Luckily, I found 3 metres of high quality white cotton on the Value Village fabric rack for $2.99. Major score. For the front of the quilt I chose "beachy" looking fabrics, since Lise and her husband have a cottage on the beach where they will spend lots of time now that they're both retired. Those fabrics were from the same shop where I purchased the pink fabrics for the springtime baby quilt in my previous post. The shop where the salesladies were rude to me. Humph.

Lise's Quilt

Of course everyone I work with wanted to be a part of the quilt, so I put out the call to my colleagues and asked them all to bring in some blue cotton fabric for me to add to the quilt. I cut 3 by 10 rectangles out of each fabric and sewed them together in a panel for the back of the quilt. Our only male colleague gave me a neck tie to cut up and that fabric definitely was NOT cotton. It was the wiggly-est fabric I've ever worked with and required a pin every couple of millimetres to hold it steady while I sewed. Luckily everyone else brought more cooperative fabric!

Lise's Quilt

The binding fabric was almost identical to one of the ones I'd purchased for the front. I got it at my favourite local quilt shop, Dragonfly Fabrics. The filling is 100% cotton and unbleached and I got that, plus a bunch of much-needed new thread, at Dragonfly as well.

I stayed up late for a few nights in a row, watching Sex and the City (season 3) and hand quilting every second "coin" in the stack. I used white thread and worried how it might look on the back of the quilt, but I think it turned out very well. I had it finished in time to give to Lise at her last staff meeting with us all last week.

she likes the quilt

I think she likes it.


Sunday, May 29, 2011


Design Sponge posted a home tour recently that featured this amazing quilt made out of hexagons cut from solid fabric. I love this take on a standard nine-patch type classic quilt. I want to make one, ASAP. Time to start hoarding solids.


Sunday, May 22, 2011

Jennifer: Spring Time Baby Quilt

baby quilt gift

I finished this a few weeks ago, but haven't had time to post about it until now! This is a baby quilt for my husband's cousin's impending baby girl. I'm not sure when exactly she's due to arrive, but hopefully I'll get this in the mail before she makes her debut.

baby quilt gift

The fabric for this one is by Riley Blake Designs and the line is called Rainy Days and Mondays. I picked it up at a small fabric store in a town about an hour outside of Ottawa. I was working in that particular town for the day and I rewarded myself with a trip to the quilt shop at the end of the day. Their selection was great, but their service was terrible. I tried to be friendly and chatty, but the staff clearly wanted nothing to do with me. I wonder if this is something that other younger quilters have also experienced? I notice sometimes when I go fabric shopping with my Mom (who has only ever made one quilt in her life!) that sometimes salesladies will talk to her and ignore me, even if I'm the one standing there with a stack of fabric in my hands!

baby quilt gift

Anyway, quilt shop manners aside, I loved this fabric line at first sight. You'll note the raindrops which are modern and colourful and not unlike the fabric that I was lusting over in my last post. The design was my own, inspired by some potholders I came across during a bit of sewing-blog surfing a while ago. After finishing the quilt I thought that maybe it would have benefitted from more contrast between the fabrics. I still like the cross design a lot, though, so I think I'll be doing this again some time soon. The backing and binding were leftover from the twin quilts that I posted about previously.

baby quilt gift

And of course it wouldn't be one of my posts without a picture of a pet of some kind hanging out beside/under/on my finished product!


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Fabric Lust: Carolyn Gavin "Spring Street"

I don't know what to make out of this new Spring Street fabric line by Carolyn Gavin, but I want to make SOMETHING! That said, I don't know how I'd bear to cut up the fabric below:

Do you see those bicycles? So fantastic. I love any fabric with streets and buildings depicted on it. A side effect of being a city girl, I guess!

I'm working on two quilts now, so I should be posting more in the near future. Stay tuned!


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Jennifer: Two Quilts Are Better Than One

twin quilts

I got married this past August and in doing so joined a family that was as welcoming as it was giant. Coming from a very, very small family myself (my mother had one brother and my father was an only child) it took me a while to get a handle on who all the cousins were and how everyone was related. And now what better way to start ingratiating myself with this new family than to start making things for their babies?

twin qults

Case in point, my husband's cousin Louise and her husband Craig just had twins. Twins! Holy! One boy and one girl. And when we visited with them last weekend both parents and both babies were calm and happy, which is amazing to me. I brought along these two quilts for the babies and they were very well received.


Though the above photo was taken in my own living room, the bulk of the the handwork on these quilts was done at a couple of very entertaining ladies craft nights that my friend Sarah has been hosting on Wednesdays at her house. I've never been a part of a knitting group or a book club or anything like that before, so it's been really fun to get together with some local ladies, listen to pop punk, drink tea, eat baked goods, and work away at our own projects.

twin quilt #2

The fabric for the pink quilt was taken mostly from leftover strips of flannel that I had from a pajama making spree a few Christmases ago. They were from different pairs of pajamas made for different people, but all of them went well together in the quilt. The backing was a small piece of flannel I picked up at Fabricland because I didn't have anything I could use at home. I don't know why the stripes on the right side look all wonky in the photo, they actually all turned out very straight.

twin quilt #1

The second quilt was made mostly of fabric from Kat's stash that she generously gave to me when I visited her a few weeks ago. I bought a metre of the stripey yellow fabric at Oakville Sewing Centre during that same visit with Kat. Both quilts came together pretty quickly because the designs were so simple. For the hand quilting I just quilted the seams, which made it kind of a no-brainer. Love those quick little baby quilts! So satisfying.


Saturday, February 12, 2011

mill house inn by fig tree jelly roll quilt - a work in progress.

The appliqué wording is now complete (I did the stitching by hand because I couldn't figure out how to make my fancy machine do it).  Probably not the best idea to learn how to use the blanket stitch feature on my new Memory Craft!  I really do need to get a lesson on how to use the bells and whistles on it.

I was excited to lay out the blocks to see what the completed quilt will look like.  It will also have some appliqué hearts added once I finish the top - you can see an example of it on the pattern.  I'm not 100% sold on this quilt top yet and I'm hoping the addition of the hearts balances it out and makes it pop more. I should be able to finish up the top in the next week (though my entire crew, including myself is sick with the flu right now so that may be ambitious).

Monday, February 7, 2011

Inspiration: Very Cool Denim Quilt

This denim quilt is from the Fall 2010 issue of Stitch Magazine and I love, love, love it. I've been thinking on and off for years about making a denim and corduroy quilt. I've even started saving up our outgrown/worn out cords and jeans to eventually use in the project. I think I was held up by the fact that I couldn't imagine quilting through all that denim! But this project description got me over that fear. I'd completely forgotten about tied quilts! And I think the ties really suit the style of this one.

This may be my next full sized quilt project. Stay tuned.