Category Archives: Quilting

Piecing and Thinking

Well hello there!  How’s the weekend going?  It’s a beautiful, relaxing week here in ThimbleannaLand.  I’ve been piecing more Steampunk blocks, taking my time and really enjoying the process.  So far, so good.  Out of 48 blocks, I only have 14 left to go.  Slow and steady wins the race. ;-D

Thimbleanna: Piecing

For most of the summer I’ve had my sewing machine on the kitchen table.  TheManoftheHouse hasn’t complained but he must be getting tired of it.  It’s getting harder and harder to sew in the dungeon, because the view from our kitchen is so pretty and I just want to sit there to sew all the time.  Really, I’d just like to move the whole sewing room to the kitchen.  That’s how it should be, don’t you think?

Thimbleanna: Piecing

While I piece along, my mind wanders.  Last night I was thinking about the blog posts not to long ago where people were sharing their favorite quilt book.  My favorite book is my first quilt book MeMum bought me.  The It’s Okay If You Sit On My Quilt Book by Mary Ellen Hopkins.  My quilty peep Junie told me a few weeks ago that Mary Ellen recently passed away, which is very sad.  I don’t remember taking a class from her, but Junie says I did one year when we were in Paducah.

Thimbleanna: Mary Ellen Hopkins

It looks like someone in the family took a class from Mary Ellen — I found the papers below in MeMum’s The It’s Okay If You Sit On My Quilt Book.  Either way, I adored her style.  Her approach was simple and straight forward.  This book is full of quilt blocks and simple ways to put them together to make great quilts.  It’s an approach that I think we sometimes fail to teach to new quilters.  I feel we talk patterns too much, rather than teaching new quilters how to dream and plan and make quilts of their own.

Thimbleanna: Mary Ellen Hopkins

I love how the pages of Mary Ellen’s book are on “graph paper”. It’s so fun to plan blocks out on graph paper and see how simple blocks, when placed together, form lots of different patterns.  Mary Ellen doesn’t give you a quilt pattern.  She just shows you the blocks and  then you make your own pattern, whatever size you want.

Thimbleanna: Mary Ellen Hopkins

I remember pouring through the blocks of this book when I made the quilts we have in our guest room.  Do you see the block above that I used in the first quilt in the picture below?

Thimbleanna: Pinwheel Quilts

I knew I wanted both quilts to have pinwheels in them, but I wanted the quilts to be different.  The block in the second quilt is also in Mary Ellen’s book.

Oh well, I’m quilt rambling — back to the Steampunks!  Just wanted to check in — hoping everyone has a great weekend.  Especially if you’re here in the US where it’s a long one!

XOXO,
Anna

Birthday Adventure Girls

Hello, Hello!  Did you have a nice weekend?  I had a great weekend — with LOTS of sewing.  ;-D

I gave in to the call of my Adventure Girls quilt kit.  I was going to make it for me, but while I was piecing the top on Saturday afternoon, I realized that I was worrying about not having a birthday present for MeMum.  Then it dawned on me — she has a flannel throw quilt for tv watching, but not a lighter quilt for the summer.  The Adventure Girls would be perfect!  So, I kicked it into gear (and stayed up late!) so I could finish the quilt in time for her birthday — which was yesterday.

Thimbleanna: Adventure Girls Quilt

My version of the quilt looks just like the full view I showed you a few posts ago, so I didn’t take a new full view shot.  This quilt was SO fun to make.  Those little Adventure Girls are so cute and it was  fun to look at all the details while I was sewing away.  I quilted it very simply — 1/4″ quilting on both sides of all of the seams, and then I quilted around most of the figures in one way or another.  You can sort of see how I went around the figures in the picture below.  (Look at the cute little dog!)

Thimbleanna: Adventure Girls Quilt

While I was quilting, it seemed like the quilt was just so flimsy and didn’t really have much substance.  I remember I felt that way when I was quilting the graduation quilt for my nephew.  It always amazes me how washing the quilt really makes it come to life.  The process makes the batting bloom and it really makes the quilt cozy.  I chose the blue flower print for the back of the quilt.

Thimbleanna: Adventure Girls Quilt

I LOVE this little quilt and I’ll have to make at least one more (possibly two)!  And I love having fun, quick projects now and then, in between the longer, more detailed projects.  Here are the Adventure Girls all bundled up before I gave them to MeMum (complete with a small adventure girl giving my bow the once over).

Thimbleanna: Adventure Girls Quilt

Now that I’m refreshed from a fun project, I can get back to the Steampunk blocks.  Oh, and the rest of the items on my 10 Things this Summer list.  Summer is almost over!

Have a good week!
XOXO,
Anna

Steampunkiness

Hello Boys and Girls!  Just checking in on a slooooow week.  We’ve been trying to get back in the groove after our little vacation.  ‘Tisn’t easy!  I’m making slower than slow progress on my steampunk blocks, but I’m chugging along.  Here are six new ones.  That brings the count up to 18 finished — not even half-way yet.

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

I’m loving the process though so I’m taking my time.  I have my piles of fabrics in two laundry baskets — one for prints already used and one for ones that are yet to use.  I’ve duplicated a few prints already and I’m sure there will be more duplicates.  I don’t use my rotary cutter either.  I know it takes more time, but I’ve been tracing around the templates and then cutting them with scissors.  Just like quilting happened before rotary cutters.  I love cutting the pieces out while I’m watching tv.  I put my old cutting board on my lap and go to town.

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

So, 18 blocks finished, 12 in one state of progress or another, and 18 left to go.  I have to get going if I’m going to make my goal of all blocks finished by the end of summer.

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

FWIW, I’ll be counting the end of summer as the official end of summer (the autumnal equinox) — not the start of school. I can’t believe kids are starting back to school already! It feels like autumnal equinox weather around here this week — it’s been unseasonably cool. Makes you worry a bit about what winter has in store. I know it will get hot again — it always does.

Do you have any exciting plans for the weekend? I’ll be fighting the urge to interrupt the steampunk blocks and slip those Adventure Girls into the sewing queue — I’m betting the Girls will win! ;-D
Have a good weekend!
XOXO,
Anna

We Were Made for Adventure

Do you remember when I went to quilt market in May, and I showed you a picture of The Sweet Life line of fabric by Cori Dantini — and I told you that you would be seeing it again?  No?  Well, the fabric surprise that happened while I was on vacation, is the arrival of The Sweet Life fabric that I ordered at market.  Here’s a picture of the quilt that was in the Blend Fabrics booth at market.

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

I fell hard for that sweet little quilt.  I think it’s the perfect quilt for the girls in our lives — for birthdays, graduations or for stepping out into a grand new adventure.  My favorite panel is the cute middle panel in the quilt above — We Were Made for Adventure.

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

And look at this adorable print — the little girls are doing fun things like gardening and embroidering.  Soooo, so cute!

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

Blend Fabrics has put out a free quilt pattern for this cute quilt.  Here’s a better shot from the pattern.

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

I’ve put together some kits for these cute quilts — I hope you’ll love them just as much as I do.  Each kit has almost 8 yards of fabric – enough to make the quilt, as pictured, plus a quilt back.  Plus, there will be one We Were Made for Adventure block left over — it would make a cute pillow to go with your quilt!

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

I can’t wait to make one for me – I’m trying to exercise some self control and finish the Steampunk blocks before I start this quilt.  Although, it will go together so quickly that it wouldn’t really hurt to let it cut in line.   I also bought some extra Adventure Girls fabric panels.  Each panel has three blocks — Dare to Fly, Enjoy Your Days, and We Were Made For Adventure.  Both the kits and the fabric panels are in my Etsy Shop.

Thimbleanna: Cori Dantini

Considering that MyDadLovesMeBestSister and CuteNiece1 jumped out of an airplane today, do you think maybe they need  We Were Made for Adventure quilts too???  (Just between you and me, I think they need We’re a Few Fries Short of a Happy Meal quilts — cah-raaay-zy!)

XOXO,
Anna

Friendship Stars

Hello??? Anybody out there??? It’s SO darn quiet in blogland! It would be nice to say that some of you are on summer vacation, but sadly, I think you’ve abandoned your blogs. It’s that darn Instagram!!! What are you guys thinking? Quick and Easy? Hmmmm??? (And hello — a post of your instagram pictures doesn’t count — we already saw those pictures on your Instagram!!!)  Come Back. I Beseech You!!! Come Back!!! (How’s that for old English??? Begging never works — how ’bout beseeching???)  I miss your posts!

{Sigh} and Whatever.

Back to this Friendship Star subject. I had a fun surprise about two weeks ago — I got the quilter’s call that my Friendship Star quilt was finished. Yay! A quick binding and she’s ALL done. (She looks wonky on the long grass, but rest assured, she’s nice and flat and even.)

Thimbleanna: Friendship Star

The quilter always does a wonderful job.  I usually give her a loose idea of what I have in mind and then she runs with it.

Thimbleanna: Friendship Star

In this case, I told her 1/4″ quilting on the stars in the middle of the quilt, cross-hatching on the applique border and whatever she wanted on the other borders.  I love her choices.

Thimbleanna: Friendship Star

Here’s a blurry close-up of her pretty little stitches.

Thimbleanna: Friendship Star

I’ve mentioned before that some of the stars in the middle were made by the girls that were in my old Friendship Quilting group.  The stars were done probably around 1992 or 1993.  Then it took me the next 20 years to get the rest of the stars and the border done.  There are some ugly fabrics in here LOL!  (I can’t wait to see which of the fabrics that we swoon over today will be the butt-uglies of the future!)

Thimbleanna: Friendship Star

I had forgotten until I was taking pictures that I put our initials in this quilt.  It’s a king-size quilt and I originally planned it for our bed.  Sadly, that plan happened back when mattresses were thinner, so it’s not quite big enough now.  It will work as a coverlet though, with a plain quilt under it.  You know, if wine and forest green are ever back in style LOL.

Thimbleanna: Friendship Star

Too bad the call didn’t come before I made my 10 Things this Summer list. I could have listed the binding as a task and then taken credit for a completed item! Oh well, a finish is a finish and I’ll take it — one less UFO!

Have a great weekend!
XOXO,
Anna