Q1’17 FAL – Wrap Up

I had a lot of projects on my Q1 FAL, and I really got a lot done!  My main goal was to get lots of practice with my new longarm, and I’m happy to say that I did a great job on that front.

  1. Bow-tie Quilt:  this is a really old top I made forever ago that I pulled out to practice with on the long arm.  I need to finish the quilting and try some machine binding.  Update:  DONE – posted about here.
  2. Mess-of-a-Quilt:  I started quilting this last summer during my long arm renting time/classes.  I got it about 3/4 of the way quilted before I ran out of time.  I’ll need to load this on my own long arm and finish it up.  Update:  DONE – posted about here.
  3. Bright Squares:  this is another top I made a long time ago from the leftover fabrics from the Bow Tie quilt.  Another good quilting practice quilt top.  Update:  DONE – posted about here.
  4. Death Star:  I saw this pattern online recently, just loved it, and had to make one.  Update:  DONE – posted about here.
  5. Rings:  I’ve had these rings cut forever but need to put them on the top and get it quilted.  I pulled this one out again as a good practice quilt.  Update:  DONE – posted about here.
  6. Black and White Stripes:  I got this one cut recently – it will be another good practice quilt.  Update:  DONE – posted about here.
  7. Red, Black and White Coins:  This has been cut for awhile – another good practice.  Update:  Quilt top is done, I’ll add it to the Q2 finish list.
  8. Caterpillar Quilt:  I just love this fabric.  I pulled it to do a tumbler quilt for a new baby quilt.  Update:  No progress after the fabric pull
  9. Circa 1934 Squares:  I have a few more practice quilts to do before I’m ready to tackle this one, but I should get to it this quarter.  Update:  I planned out a quilting plan, but I just wasn’t sure it was what I wanted to do.  I got a good dose of motivation after my Angela Walters workshops this past weekend.  I’m loading it on my longarm this week.
  10. Sugar Block Club 3.0:  quilt top is done!  Need to decide how to quilt in and get it finished.  Update:  Again, I did a lot of quilting planning, but am not feeling quite confident enough in my quilting skills.  I’ll add it to the Q2 list.
  11. Blueberry Park Drunkard’s Path:  blocks are done – need to put it together and quilt it.  Update: No progress here.  I need to get some inspiration around this one!
  12. Splendid Sampler:  This has been a lot of work – we are up to 88 blocks, with another 10-15 bonus blocks.  We’ll get to the full 100 by about February or March, and I’m looking forward to wrapping this one up.  Update:  I finished all the blocks (posted about here), decided on a layout and got the top together.  I’ll add the finish to my Q2 list.
  13. Bee-utiful Quilt along:  I’ve done 12 of the 20 embroidery blocks, so I’m not likely to get this one done, but I’m enjoying doing the embroidery every night relaxing after work.  Update:  I finished 4 more blocks – only 4 more to go!

Thirteen UFOs was a long list, and I can’t believe I finished 6 of them.  I also finished the tops for another 3, so it looks like Q2 will be full on long arming.  I should have another good quarter of finishes.


Linking up with the Q1’17FAL page

Black and White Stripes

This was another pack of fat quarters I bought, which came with a pretty cool pattern.  The pattern showed blocks with 2 colors, using stripes of varying widths.  I thought it was perfect for the contrast of the black and white, and I’ve always wanted to do a black and white quilt.

Cutting it up went pretty quickly, and sewing the strips together was fast work.  However, I had previously read that sewing together strips could wind up with a very wonky and skewed block.  I tried to mitigate that problem by reversing directions that I sewed the strips, as I had read to do, but it really didn’t help much – man were my blocks wonky!  I did the best I could to straighten them up and get the top together.

From there, time to quilt.  Up to this point I had been doing all custom quilting using my longarm to get practice, but I decided to try out the Avante Prostitcher on this one.  It is a pretty slick system – you load up a quilting design, set the size of your quilt, and it automatically sews for you.  I had watched the instructional videos and had a vague sense of what I needed to do, but still had a pretty steep learning curve.  I set aside a Saturday to tackle the project, and set to work.

Loading up the instructional videos again, I set out to figure out the software.  It really was pretty straightforward process, and I had it stitching in about an hour.  I’ve tried to load a video of it stitching in action, but it appears the video is too large of a file.  You can see the video on my Facebook and Instagram pages.

I finished quilting the whole thing in about 4-5 hours, which is longer than it should have been as I had some issues getting everything reset when I ran out of bobbin thread.  But that it still pretty quick, and after adding some machine binding she was done.

Here she is:

I found a cool black, white, and gray print for the back:

Some detail of the quilting – I chose a continuous flower/daisy design and used a light gray thread:

Finally, Maggie decided to get in on the photo shoot, deciding she looks really good with a black and white backdrop.  (really I think she just wanted to figure out what her dad was doing):


This quilt was another one on my Q1’17 FAL list, so I’ll be linking it up when the time comes.




March Bee Block – Trees and Gnomes

Our Queen Bee this month, Kate from Smiles from Kate, picked a really interesting block – improv trees and gnomes.  You can see her post about her block here.  I have to admit I wasn’t totally crazy about it to start, but making the blocks was an interesting process.

Here is my fabric pull – I was drinking coffee in my New Mexico mug on a Sunday morning:

And here is my finished block.  I was in deep concentration trying to make the trees, and especially putting the darn trunks on the trees (they kept winding up way off to the side), so I don’t have any in process photos.

I’m pretty happy with it, and got it sent off to Kate Friday morning.  I do hope she likes it.  I think the gnomes are cute!


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