More Union Jack flags mean…more Liberty of London fabric!

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Variety is the spice of life, so I am feeling very spicy.  If I had to choose one fabric only to use for the rest of my life?  Well that would be cruel, but I would definitely choose Liberty Tana Lawn.

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Picking the fabrics to combine in each block has been helping curb my innate desire to make sure everything matches perfectly.

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The hardest part of this project is trying to NOT plan ahead.  I want to wait until I have all the blocks to choose the fabric and style of the sashing.  But I’m getting impatient.

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Five blocks a month, until I have a total of…I don’t know yet.  I have not yet even calculated how big I want to make this.

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Seeing each block individually makes me think I want this on my bed.  King size.  At least that will give me a long time to work on it.  I really enjoy working on foundation paper pieced projects.

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The obsessive part of me craves the perfection that can be achieved with paper piecing.  And it is so easy!  I took some pictures while I was working on these blocks.

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Sew, press, cut, add fabric and repeat.  Easy and stunning!

We’ll talk soon, I’m off on an adventure.

I went to Downton Abbey, so I had to join a quilt along.

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Speaking of my Anglophile tendencies, I went to Downton Abbey in May.  A trip to the promised land for someone like me, someone whose idea of a rollicking viewing experience is Sense and Sensibility.  Or Downton Abbey, of course.  It’s my absolute favorite TV show in recent years.

Andover fabrics came out with Christmas Downton Abbey fabric this year!  OMG, Christmas and Downton Abbey together?  You know you can count me in!

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Ebony Love at Lovebug Studios (http://www.lovebugstudios.com) started a Downton Abbey Christmas in July mystery quilt along this summer.  I felt it was my destiny, nay, my responsibility, to join in.

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I’ve never participated in a mystery quilt along before.  I decided to go for this one, because I already knew I loved the fabric.  In fact, I had already purchasesda half yard bundle of the fabric.  The fabric requirements are obviously not the same as a half yard bundle, but I am going to be flexible and mix it up a little to use all the pieces in the bundle.

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These 16 patch blocks show some of the changes made so far.  I like the variety that this is bringing into my version of the quilt.

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I have quite the assortment of candles going on in mine!  I will be fascinated when the layout is available, so I can figure out how to incorporate my blocks into it.

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It’s the fifth week of the quilt along, and I am up to date!  That is something to celebrate, in my estimation.  Once or twice in my life I have joined progressive projects, and let’s just say that staying up to date is not always my modus operandi.  I guess it helps that I still like this project.  And I know it helps that I love Downton Abbey.  I think Lord and Lady Grantham are probably going to invite me to a shooting party soon.

Girly Christmas quilt for a new baby

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It’s raining babies.  Girl flavored babies.  And so the parade of adorable little baby quilts continues.

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I found the cutest pattern for a big block quilt.  It’s called the Lone Star baby quilt by Amy Smart.  She has an amazing blog, Diary of a Quilter.  This pattern is on the Bernina website here:  http://weallsew.com/2015/07/08/lone-star-baby-quilt-tutorial-part/

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I love the look of a one block quilt.  This one uses 10″ squares, a portion of a layer cake.  I got it in my mind that I wanted to make this quilt for an upcoming baby.  And I decided it should be a Christmas quilt.  A Christmas baby girl quilt.

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Then what to my wondering eyes should appear?  A ten inch stacker by Penny Rose fabrics, Little Joys.  12 prints tied up with a bow.  Throw in four white squares and it’s a quilt.

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Dorito approves.  The fabric has such sweet prints.  Little reindeer, toys, trees, bows.  And there are PINKS in this Christmas collection!  My heart is aflutter.  I ordered some yardage for the border, backing and binding. Or course i got extra of the two pink prints!

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You can tell that this gem goes together quickly.  For me, the tricky part, the challenge, is doing the actual quilting.  I’m getting better at making my quilt sandwiches.

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I included this picture because you can see the quilting pretty well.  I used my walking foot, chose a section, and worked in a “spiral” towards the center of each section.  No measuring or anything, I eyeballed it and drove full speed.  I have only quilted a few things myself.  I can’t see myself ever attempting anything the size of a bed.  I do like how this one worked out.  Practice makes perfect, right?

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This one is going in the mail this week, and will reappear in the state of

Still July, so more Christmas!

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Time for a project, stat!  I don’t want to get behind on my Christmas in July projects.  Of which I planned ZERO.

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I don’t have nearly enough table runners.  I’m serious.  So I grabbed a charm pack of Folk Art Holiday by Moda.

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The pattern is from the booklet Angles With Ease 2 by Heather Peterson.  And I got to use my Triangler ruler from Anka’s Treasures.  I cut the remaining charm squares in half, sewed them into a 2-1/2″ strip and used them as the binding.  I am loving my scrappy binding!

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I used my walking foot and improvised the quilting.

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Oh look!  The back of the runner is the infamous Hawaiian print of yore!  Christmas 2012 I made matching outfits for the family out of the red and white.  We rocked that Christmas photo.

DSCN2154A few of us had different colored hair back then.

I got the shots of my new table runner, then someone seemed to need a little photo sesh…

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I’m all about indulging the children.

Machine stitching the New Hexagon Millefiore quilt: rosette 6

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Yahoo, it’s still June and number 6 is done!

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I’m still using the glue basting method that I learned from Katja’s wonderful book, The New Hexagon.  I hand stitched the center star, and completed the rest of the center and all the other rounds using invisible thread and a narrow zigzag.

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It’s all about feeling good about your projects, isn’t it?  This project was so far out of my comfort zone when I approached it with the notion of hand sewing.  I never could have made a dent in it!

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It’s so exciting to see stitchers from all over the world embracing this project.  And all the ingenuity going into the fabric choices  – and construction methods – makes it all the more inspirational.

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If you want to try the method I am using, check out my 3-part tutorial, starting here:

https://handmadebycarolecarr.com/2015/01/23/machine-stitching-the-millefiore-quilt-tutorial-part-one-for-those-of-us-who-hand-sew-at-the-speed-of-a-turtle/

25 Hawaiian quilt blocks = a quilt top!

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Do you think I’m just a little bit excited today?  I have the top of my Hawaiian quilt stitched together!

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There were many Kodak moments while I wrestled this through the sewing machine.  I stitched the blocks for each row together, then stitched the rows together.

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I laid it out on the lawn so I could get a nice pic.  The sunlight washes out the color a little, but this thing is VIBRANT!

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Next I have to figure out what I want to do for the drop, the hangy-downy part.  And I have to decide if I want to put some kind of border around it.

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I’ll think about that tomorrow.

Meanwhile, keeping with the multicolor theme, enjoy this rainbow in my backyard.

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Bonus photo, my puppy Dorito trying to learn how to go down stairs.

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I made her a half step out of important books.  Doesn’t the cat look skeptical?