It’s the Last Day of May

This is the last day of our Quilts of Valor Challenge. Here’s hoping more packages go in the mail today. There’s a great post and pix of quilt blocks over at  Snoodlz Noodlz over at LilyPadQuilting who made some beautiful stars. Her post tells us again how important this project is for all of us.

The end of a month always brings new beginnings. I visited with my friend, Sherry, yesterday and got very inspired by the things she’s doing. She’s making some quilts from this book by Judy Martin

and here’s Sherry’s work in progress – there are so many beautiful quilts in this book, I just have to have it. The colored squares finish at 3 inches.

Yesterday we got to babysit – I was taking care of the little baby and Ted was playing with the bubble gun with Kes — Somehow those curls got tangled in the fan on the bubble gun. Guess who got to untangle that mess!

And I almost never show you pictures of the little ones, but you just have to see this happy little fellow

 
 

Quilts of Valor and more

While working on the Quilts of Valor that are just completed, I also took the opportunity to make a ‘leaders and enders’ quilt for my grandson. These are squares and triangles that I kept beside the machine and are made from scraps leftover from other projects that I cut using the Accuquilt 3-1/2 inch strip cutter and the 3 inch finished half square triangle. The centers of each star are novelty prints.

The attic windows design seemed nicer than a standard sashing. This was a lot of fun to make and very quick to quilt using continuous curves in the 9 patch blocks and a single curvy line in the window frames.

 

 

And last – but not least – is the quilt label that I stitched for the Quilts of Valor. The main reason I purchased an embroidery machine was to make quilt labels – and then they never seemed to work very well. Finally, using a border from Embroidery Library and my own lettering, this is a very nice label.

  
 

Memorial Day 2012 and Quilts of Valor

This is a particularly special Memorial Day for me as we go into the last lap of the GO! for a Star Quilts of Valor Challenge. I have “met” and become aware of so many quilters who are dedicated to honoring the military service men and women who serve to protect us, our country and our way of life. The Quilts of Valor program is a wonderful way to give back to them.

The Quilt Show blog has a short 18 minute preview video of a public television show that has been made about the Quilts of Valor program. I hope you will be able to watch this video.

And here are the quilts that I have been working on for the last few days. Every minute spent on them has been enjoyable. There is still time for any of you reading this to become a part of this Challenge and to make a single quilt block or several quilt blocks and get them in the mail to Richard and Tink Linhart by May 31. You can find more information here.

This is the quilt made with the Triangle in a Square Accuquilt die(55027).  I had made 12 blocks as I worked with this die, so bordered them with the blue and did a wide sash (3 inches finished) so that the quilt would be large enough. This one still needs binding on it.

This is the split star quilt made with 12 inch blocks. It turned out beautifully and is even prettier in person. 
 

One Week Left for GO! for a Star QOV Challenge Entries

It has been so exciting the past few days to get email from participants in this Challenge. Every email inspires me. Many of you have been able to make beautiful quilts and many of you have squeezed enough time into your very busy schedules to make blocks that will become beautiful quilts with the help of the Linhart’s quilting group. Every single contribution is so important to this cause. SewCalGal wrote a very inspirational blog post about this. I could not say it better – so encourage you to visit her site and read what she wrote about bringing back the Memorial in Memorial Day. She has wonderful photos of our service members receiving quilts. You can see how meaningful it is to each of them and how honored they feel to receive the gift of a quilt. 

This Challenge extends through May 31, and we will give the mail and delivery services another full week after that to be sure that all packages have arrived.You can also email me and let me know when you have shipped, so that we can double check and be sure that your package is included in the Challenge.

I have finished the split star quilt that I started some time ago. The binding was completed the day before yesterday–I still have to stitch the label on it and will get it in the mail on Monday. I will take photos later today and update the blog–although you’ve seen pre-quilted photos of the top.

Have a safe and Happy Memorial Day weekend – and here’s hoping you have a little time to stitch a block or two for this Challenge. 
 

Two more beautiful Quilts of Valor

Susan in Kansas sent photos of the quilts that she has shipped to the Linharts for the QOV Challenge. These are beautiful quilts. I love that she added stars and blocks at the top of two different patterns.The first is a Jelly Roll Race quilt. I had heard of this quilt pattern, but didn’t realize how it was actually made until I watched the Youtube video. This is an incredible way to make a nice quilt in a small amount of time. I highly recommend you watch this video. Here’s Susan’s first quilt–doesn’t it look great with those blocks at the top?

 

And here’s Susan’s second quilt. She was inspired by the Patriotic Rail Fence pattern on Mary’s blog. I love this one too.

 
 

Another beautiful QOV finished

Colleen over at Colleen’s Sew Inspired sent this photo along of a quilt top that she completed for the GO! for a Star QOV Challenge. What a wonderful tribute for someone who has served our country.

This is really beautiful with the rail fence blocks and that wonderful star print just makes it sparkle. And I love the striped border. Colleen has a good eye for putting fabrics together.

All it takes to enter this Challenge is a single 12-1/2″ block. Dick and Tink have a committed group of quilters who will put all the blocks together into quilts, and they have longarm quilters who will quilt and finish the quilts. Every effort is important. If you make Quilts of Valor for your local chapter, you probably have an orphan block or two lying around. The quilts that Dick and Tink receive are given to service members throughout the US. It is so easy to put a block into an envelope and send it to them. Include your name and email address and your city and state on a piece of paper along with the block.

Richard and Tink Linhart
333 West Brown Deer Road #130
Milwaukee, WI 53217 
 

Update on GO! for a Star Challenge

This is a big thank you to everyone who is participating in this Challenge. I have some photos to show of the quilt that Linda  finished – it has been quilted now and is more beautiful than ever. This is also a reminder that in order to participate in the Challenge for the prizes, quilts should be sent to Tink and Dick Linhart who are regional coordinators for the QOV program in Milwukee. Complete information on the Challenge is here.

This is the shipping address for Challenge quilts:

Richard and Tink Linhart
333 West Brown Deer Road #130
Milwaukee, WI 53217

And there are some great prizes for quilts received in response to this Challenge. The prizes are coordinated through me and include a Baby GO fabric cutter and five dies of the winner’s choice as well as a Mark Lapinsky set of Aurifil thread – 12 spools of 1400 yards of 50 weight cotton (great for piecing and quilting). Other prizes include a magazine subscription from Blocks to Die For, an accuquilt Value die for the Baby GO!, and some fabrics.

Here is Linda’s finished quilt. The label is wonderful and has the information needed in a simple but effective format:

 
 

Safari Quilt: Part 2

Once I realized that the original design wouldn’t work, I tried a new design. This design used two blocks, a log cabin block with the focus print as a 5 inch patch in the middle and a connector block using a 4 inch patch of the print in the middle. When these went together, it seemed the yellow background fabric overwhelmed the print too. Here’s a picture after trying several different backgrounds and realizing that it was the design/layout, not the fabric that was a problem.

 

So, back to the drawing board. It seemed the connector blocks were not “connecting”, so that was the first plan of attack. One way to add an extra connector is to add sashing the same color as the background and use a cornerstone that connects the connector block. That is what I did in EQ7, and it works! Can’t tell you how happy I am now.

This is a very traditional style quilt, but with the machine embroidery in the blocks, it’s going to be very nice when finished.

 
 

Safari Quilt for Wesley

Here’s a project that has been on the back burner for a long time, but for some reason the inspiration just wasn’t there. This is for my niece’s 5-year old son. He wants a wild animal quilt. First, the fabric we wanted disappeared almost as quickly as it was printed, and we didn’t get it. Then, for a year all the safari prints were in very soft colors. We wanted bright colors. Finally this print appeared and I bought it right away.

I also wanted to use machine embroidery on it and was pleased when Accuquilt came out with their zoo animals. But, there hasn’t been time to digitize those. Then I ran across this set of zoo animals from Embroidery Library. They look as if they were designed for this fabric. Sometimes it seems the stars must align for a quilt to be born.

The next step was to open EQ7 and see what could be created. I came up with a couple of designs and decided to start stitching. After two rows on the design wall, it was obvious that it was all wrong. The beautiful pinwheels and four patch blocks that I was using overwhelmed the print. The focus was to be the print and the embroidery, not the pieced blocks. Every time I looked at the blocks on the wall, my eye darted everywhere–there was no place for the eye to rest. Here’s what I had:

The rest of the story tomorrow. . . 
 

QOV Update

Just wanted to give you an update on my QOV project. Here’s the photo I’ve been promising for awhile now. This top is so pretty. It still needs a border to tie it all together. Once that’s on, it will be ready to go on the frame to be quilted. Am I going to make the May 31 deadline? Not sure – there are other pots on the stove too! I must say I am very pleased with this top. It’s hard to work with 12 inch blocks when 9 inch blocks are about the largest that ever go into my quilts, but this is very pretty. The background fabric has a little bit of a directional print which I didn’t take into account, but that actually adds interest to the top when looking at it in person.