Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Pasque Star Finish

You may wonder why I call this Pasque Star. I wanted a reference to the pink, and yeah, I know pasque flowers are more of a soft purple, but pasque is a reference to PĂąques, which is Easter in French, I made this quilt around Easter, it's Spring, and it just reminds me of those soft, early prairie crocus, as they are also called. (photo from Canadian Wildlife Federation)

I used to grow them in my garden in Alberta. Sadly I am too far south now in Canada for them to grow here, though here we have wild violets galore and snowdrops in early spring!

Here it is on that perfect fence for hanging small quilts, in front of our barberry that's leafing out so nicely!
Note that Island Batik supplied all the fabric for this quilt, Hobbs Batting supplied the batting, and Aurifil supplied the thread. And! The quilt was made with the AccuQuilt Go! Cube 8" dies and 2.5" strip die, both supplied by AccuQuilt!

Monday, April 29, 2019

Pasque Star Flimsy

It is done! This is the April challenge for Island Batik, who supplied the fabric, and for AccuQuilt, who supplied the dies and cutting machine.

This was a bit of an ornery quilt. I ripped and re-sewed a lot more than I usually do. I think the orientation of the HSTs churned my menopausal melon into a bit of a watermelon slushy. The quilt also had a bit of an independent streak, and didn't want to stay within the original plan. However, I am not above admitting when the quilt was right and my original design was not, so "Come on in" and see all her triangles and squares oriented correctly.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

DrEAMi! #27

Well? What squirrels have you chased during April? I was unable to for a few reasons I'm not getting into. Suffice it to say that real life took up a lot of time and tromped a bit on our spirits this past month, but we are muddling along and doing okay! Thank you for all the kind words and behind the scenes chats with you, my dear friends. Two things I stumbled upon while doing some cleaning and moving stuff due to renovations, which are causing a bit of the behind the scenes angst, were worth photographing and videotaping for this very post! I think my friends and family know my squirrelly, distracted nature, more than I realize.

This is a black slate, I believe, coaster my mum gave me many years ago, like when I lived at home still. So it's easily 35+ years old. Yep, those are tea stains on it that did not come off with a cloth and warm water, so will try baking soda next! With this much-loved, though not at all realized WHAT animal it was, coaster, come on into the squirrel-chasing realm...

Friday, April 26, 2019

A Roll of the Dice Cushion

Last year I was part of a blog hop for Amanda Murphy's beautiful line, Free Motion Fantasy for Benartex. Teaser: I'm part of one coming up the first full week of May and I get to use her latest line, a Fall one, squeal! Once I designed the blocks and the runner for last August's hop, I had the idea to make the blocks smaller and create a cushion, and I finally have it done. Sadly I do not finally have the pattern finished, but the plan is to have it and my suitcases quilt, Oh! The Places You'll Go! both done by the end of my Beothuk Star QAL, which is June 15. This is the second finish for the Q2FAL. You can see my list here. I actually had this done over a week ago, just hadn't written it up.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

I Like/Love #27

Those close to me know that things are a bit difficult in my personal life right now, but that's why doing these posts helps so much. One of the kernels of wisdom I often say to my yoga students is, "You can change your thoughts, but first you to have to notice them." I've been trying to put that into practice more in my life. When I realize I'm going down a dark road of negative or depressing or angry thoughts, I purposely try to snap myself out of that track. It is amazing, because I notice, too, how my inner ambiance changes: I relax more, I feel I have 'space' inside; there's a calm that comes with appreciating something.

Yesterday it was the beautiful shape of a budding birch tree in our neighbours' yard, fanned out so perfectly, that helped change my thoughts. So that is #1 on April's list. Another time it was noticing the leaf buds a little bit bigger on the lilacs, and the red buds on the maple also showing in the photo below. (I still have a hard time with how slow spring is here, unlike the 'overnight' burst of an Alberta one).

Monday, April 22, 2019

Two Ongoing Challenges

The first challenge is one I am hosting for the third year the #30quiltdesignschallenge2019. You can look at that hashtag or the previous two years, by changing the year, on Instagram.

This year you won't find as many designs on Instagram because we decided to protect them by having a private FaceBook group. The number of designers sadly has dropped to about half. Some have said they just don't have time this year, but we are wondering if it is a bit of an aversion to yet another private FB group...you're preaching to the choir here; I basically only use FB for Island Batik and one good friend, and now this. If you'd like to be a part, and are fine with using Instagram, then that is absolutely fine and it's not too late! In fact, we are considering extending the deadline from May 15 to the 25, which is 70 days total, what the other two years were. That still gives you 5 weeks! Shoot me an email or DM me through Instagram; we really are a supportive group, and there have been some terrific designs, some digital, lots on graph paper, so if that's a concern, banish it!

Did I mention there are some sweet prizes?!

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Beothuk Star QAL Cutting

Now that you've gathered your fabrics (or maybe you're like me and waffle and overthink and hem and ha), we are going to cut into them. Just like the requirements for fabric, the cutting thereof varies slightly from version to version.

I'm hosting a linky party today where you can link up your blog or Instagram or Flickr post of either your fabric pull/purchase or your cutting. It will be open for a full week or more to give you ample time. I may just have a prize for one lucky person...
Oh! and here's the html code for the button. Thanks to Cindy at Stitchin at Home for guidance! You can copy and paste this into your gadgets widget and the button will appear on your sidebar directing people to the main landing page for the QAL.

<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;">
<a href="https://www.mmmquilts.com/p/beothuk-star-qal.html" target="_blank"><img border="0" data-original-height="800" data-original-width="800" height="200" src="https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/img/b/R29vZ2xl/AVvXsEif9wtg2NEXTYH3TXoPbBnxVu18TB27LBADjxj4VasqGK8wJ3_ZNarqBEpaJuii0hcH-a6d_OC_zn8Sc7ExTE2LY62w3xT2OYWZ6f8znSJhE8lCUeLE3jYEFl9qtUYk1-k6Ur9IYvS91_YK/s200/Beothuk+Star+QAL.png" width="200" /></a></div>

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Aqua in April

It's the fourth month in to the year and into the RSC2019 over at soscrappy, and all I've done is make one scrap basket for March and the fabric panels in red for the January basket. Until now.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Hands2Help Check In #1: Fern

Once again this year, I committed to making two quilts for H2H at Confessions of a Fabric Addict. I'm happy to announce that one is complete and that I've made a third commitment! This completed quilt is on my Q2FAL List. Oh! I actually am ecstatic that I won a prize in Q1! I've been part of the FAL since January 2015, and have never won anything, so when I found out I won a $50 gift certificate to Mad About Patchwork, I might've said 'Oh YAY!!' aloud. Too funny: last year this great little shop curated a beautiful kit for the Plus Playtime QAL, as well as offered a prize, both unsolicited, so kind of them, and this year they are once again offering a prize! I love small quilt shops, and try to support them as much as I can. This Wednesday the cutting instructions come out for this year's QAL, Beothuk Star. 😊
Anyhow, back to the subject of the post:
Sorry for not the greatest photo, but it has poured all day.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Q2 FAL List

It feels rather small, or dumb that I am posting this little list today, on another dark day regarding the erosion of freedom of speech, when my heart is so heavy. I love to write. Love it. Always have. I have a deep need to express myself, work out my thoughts, be creative, not just in writing, as you know. Add positivity and beauty to my world. To be restricted in doing this would quite possibly break my spirit. To see and hear this morning that another journalist, Julian Assange, another whistleblower, (I'm thinking of Khashoggi) has been silenced is deeply upsetting (that's putting it mildly). I taught English, along with French, my entire 30-year career, and one of the novels I did with my grade 12s was Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, which he wrote in 1953. He foresaw this control of the masses, by keeping them in the dark, keeping them fearful, filling their heads with meaningless TV and entertainment (he actually wrote about earbuds "seashells" before they were invented, wrote about reality TV, told of the masses being 'plugged in' 24/7!). Books were banned.

So I've cut and sewed my heart out today (hmmm), working on one of the Q2FAL goals, a quilt for a child who's been sexually assaulted. My hope is that a quilt can bring comfort in some way to an innocent victim. Who will speak up for innocents who are abused, beaten, killed (civilians), tortured (prisoners), if we capture, imprison, or worse, murder those brave people who do speak up?

I realize, as so many of us do, that quilts help to heal not only the person I am sewing for, but also my heart, to some degree. I think it is important that I mark this day, and each time when I link back to this post when I finish a project on my list, I will remember.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Beothuk Star QAL Fabric Requirements

Let me just say I am so glad you've joined me! Whether this is the first time or the third time quilting along with one of my designs, I am truly grateful for your presence, for taking the time out of your already-busy quilting life, not to mention personal life, to make something pretty!

This week you will be getting the fabric requirements. There are three ways you can make this quilt, and I guess a fourth: going off entirely in your own direction!

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Postcard Cushion

Sneaking in another finish that was on my Q1FAL List. This cushion cover is made from leftover HSTs from my Postcard from Sweden quilt. Cool: that finish post is April 20, almost exactly a year ago! I've had this top pieced for a couple months...

Thursday, April 4, 2019

TBT #16 The Farm Quilt

If you are looking for the Throwback Thursday linkup today, it is at my friend AndrĂ©e's blog, Quilting & Learning - What a Combo! She is co-hosting TBT this year with me. For all the TBT dates, click the tab at the top of this page, Quilt Alongs & TBT, scroll down to the bottom of the page, and click Throwback Thursday. Clicking here will also take you to the schedule. Basically, starting with April, we will be alternating months.
My post today will do double-duty, it's a Throwback quilt, and also fits the criteria for a fun event on all week at Needle & Foot:

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Beothuk Star QAL Introductory Post and List of Sponsors

Welcome! Let the games, I mean quilting begin! This is the official kick-off to my third annual QAL, Beothuk Star. It's a very simple quilt, much like last year's, with colour placement a key feature.

You will find all the instructions needed to make this quilt here on the blog as we progress. At the end of the QAL I will have a PDF pattern which I will give free to those who complete the quilt, as in fully finished useable quilt. The final Linky party will be for all who finish, either a flimsy or a finished quilt.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Cheerio! Finished!

A few hours past the end of March, but worth it in my humble opinion. This is the March challenge for Island Batik, who provided all the INTENSE, incredible, delicious (I want to sing loudly all of that) fabrics for this project. Aurifil provided some of the threads, some are my own purchases, and Hobbs Batting supplied the batting. We were to reimagine a vintage block or quilt in a modern way.
This is one of the projects on my Q1FAL List which you can find here. I named it "Cheerio!" because it's an English expression of greeting, and this quilt is so warm and bright, I immediately think that; in fact, I can hear it in my head, with an English accent of course! Also the block is sort of a round 'o', and makes me think of the American cereal, Cheerios! So a double entendre, which I love.