Saturday, January 31, 2009

1 piece in progress

Here is a sneak peak at the challenge piece I hinted about the other day. As (I hope) you can see, my 3rd color is orange thread! This is a woven, curvy table runner. I still have more lines to stitch and then some other embellishments to add. More later!

Hey Jackie!

Made another pillowcase for you,

that brings the total to nine.

Kitty Cat Completed

I started this quilt last week after being inspired by the black and white quilt challenge. I knew that I wanted a 'Cat' theme and set about drawing some characters. My cat looks rather grumpy but by the bottom of the quilt you will see that he manages a smile before showering his friends with hearts and flowers.

The next time your own cats are gazing out of the window staring gloomily at a bird on a branch - perhaps he's having quite different dreams from that of the usual cat and mouse/bird theories ....

Friday, January 30, 2009

It begins tomorrow

Tomorrow I am scheduled to make my 1st black and white challenge piece. I have a bit of a twist in mind re: my 3rd 'color'. If all goes well I'll have a giveaway to post! Stay tuned

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Thanks for inviting me

Hi, my names Donna and I'm thrilled to be invited in the challenge. I haven't chose my fabrics yet but have been thinking on design. I'm leaning toward a light blue/green as my color. I thought I'd share the only 2 quilts I made using B&W. These were made last year both using the same fabric with the exception of the GA. bulldog fabric used for the centers in the wonky blocks. I'm loving all the quilts seen so far.

Bento Box Top Completed

The bento box top is finished now I need to sandwich it and quilt it.
I ditched the checkerboard strip of black and whites in the border as it just didn't look any good. So the border is just plain blue. I don't think this pattern needs anymore it is enough on its own.
I hope to make a couple of pillowslips to go with as well and I am in the progress of making a black and white and purple bag to slip the quilt inside when not in use. Will post some more photos soon on the progress of those items.
Have a gre8t day cre8ting wherever you are.
~ Bye for now, from Liz ~

Monday, January 26, 2009

Rearranging Blocks

Hi friends..
thanks for the long weekend I had just recently, so I can finally 'moved' to this step: cross cutting each strip set blocks into 3 and rearranging them to assure good dispersion of color. On usual working day it almost impossible for me to do my quilt job although I would LOVE to do it :)

Sunday, January 25, 2009

black & white post

I can post from flickr to my blog "The Calico Cat." 
This one was about my black & white prints that did not make the cut for my top. 
(They will be used on the "back." I should say "other top" because I plan to do a pieced back.)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Top Completed

The top is assembled and the back is pieced!  

I've updated the Picasa album . . . including a sneak peak of the back.

The quilt will be off to my long arm quilter this week.  We've come up with an exciting plan for the quilting ~ will share photos once the binding is completed.


Friday, January 23, 2009

Miniature completed!

I finally finished my miniature quilt for this challenge yesterday but had to wait until I bought batteries for the camera.

It measures 14.5" x 22" and the backing also counts toward this challenge since it's pieced squares in black and purple. I think I'm going to list it in my etsy shop and if it doesn't sell, when the listing expires I'll keep it around for a doll quilt for my Hannah for when she's older.

What do sheep do during the summer months when it gets too hot to wear their fleece? After they have been shorn, birthed their lambs for the spring and managed to escape the butcher's in time for Easter dinner. What's a ewe to do to relax and maybe even get over a little post-partum depression and recoup from the stress of introducing yet another mouth to feed into the fold?

Why they go on holiday of course! And where, you might ask, do ewes vacation? Well, they might visit Rome taking in the history among ancient streets, sampling the local vino and sending post cards to their loved ones at home. Or maybe they visit Florida and St Augustine and look for the fountain of youth Ponce De Leon missed. A ewe could make a fortune off her wool if she were to live forever in her prime!

These sheep, however, have gone on Safari! Over to Africa they traveled to visit the desert and see the local, leagendary wild life. Rhinos, antelope, lions and jaguars! Their favorite thing to do was frolic at the watering holes with the zebra. Such lovely zebra, such wonderful stripes! Such contrast against the painted orange sunsets!

These sheep made great friends and had a wonderful summer but looked forward to their return home to share their adventures, to sitting around in the fall in front of fires and enjoying life whilst knitting socks for their children. Being sheep on safari can be very tiring.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

I remember

I recently remembered what partially prompted my collection of black & white prints. A pattern called "Wendell's Friends." You can see it & other "black & white - able" patterns here. Wendell is a cat (At the bottom of the page) but there are many non-cat patterns. I own the pattern, but have never even opened it.

Speaking of unopened patterns - I found 99% of those that I remembered  buying - not bad, huh? 

Bento Box in Progress

I have started on my bento box quilt for the challenge.

It is proving a very easy block to sew but I still manage to twist pieces around and they turn out wrong so I have needed to do some reverse sewing on a few blocks.

Here is one row of four blocks. I think I will end up doing 3 rows of 4. Not quite sure I will wait and see how it looks. Sort of make it up as I go kinda thing.
I have had to purchase some more 1/4 cuts to add some more variety into the quilt.

This is the third colour I have chosen and I will be using it in the border only. I will be adding a strip of the black and whites in a checkerboard strip in the centre. A fairly simple idea. Hope it looks okay.

I am very happy with how it is turning out so far and enjoying the simple pattern. The differing contrasts between the fabrics amaze me and how that only 2 colours can work so well and look very graphic and dramatic.
Have fun cre8ting.
~ Bye for now, from Liz ~

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

First Project Completed

Here's my first Black and White Challenge Project completed.

It's a wallet to hold your sewing paraphernalia.

I chose a hot pink batik for my accent color and the musical fabric with my college daughter in mind. She plays the violin. Maybe this will prompt her to learn to sew on her own buttons!


I am finally getting around to browsing through my Hancock's of Paducah catalog. What did I see? I page chock full of black & white prints. Some of them even have a touch of color - including mine - yellow!  

BTW I got a gift certificate to my local quilt shop - I purchased a few of the black, white & yellow prints.

I have even been able to cut several of mine!

Check this quilt out...

My friend, Ann, a new blogger...has a great black/white/red quilt posted on her blog today. Go welcome her to the blog world and see her lovely quilt!

There's a pretty sweet snowman quilt there, too!

Your thoughts?

I still have one more row of blocks to piece ~ I'm playing with the insertion of color stripes rather than adding a border later. I've auditioned more greens that you can imagine, finally settling on this marvelous batik. [photo is clickable for a closer view]

Once the final row of blocks is ready, I'll spend a day or two contemplating the color distribution amongst the green charms before I actually stitch the top together.

Current thinking is to bind with a smallish black and white print (yet to be chosen as there's an order coming my way from e-quilter any day now)

What do you think about this direction?


Wonky Cat became a Bag

I wrote a whilte ago about a quilt I was trying out with mice and cats. The blocks were supposed to be wonky but I wasn't happy with the wonkiness and decided that it wasn't quite right for a quilt. However, I hate waste and couldn't bare the thought of my blocks sitting in a drawer for months so I decided to make a simple bag that would be useful for a quilter.

This is the end result and marks my first project in black and white. The bag is long enough and wide enough to carry a quiltingruler that measures 6" x 12 ", a rotary cutter and fabric scissors. I didn't have a pattern but simply made it up as I went along.

Well, I finished one B/W/R quilt.

I used to be a Beaver ....

It was not the quilt I intended to finish for the challenge, but it is a B/W/one other quilt, that I thought I'd share.

Here's the new owner with the completed quilt -- funny hat and all!


My challenge quilt is a Bento Box that probably won't be finished until the Fall, as I'm 'saving it' for Quilt Camp with my oldest/dearest girl friend. I have to have SOMETHING to do then. Actually, we're each working on a b/w Bento box that weekend.

Of course, that doesn't stop me from purchasing even more b/w fq and nickels. I probably have enough for 3-4 b/w quilts ;)


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

January Journal quilt

I am taking part in the IFQ  Journal Quilt challenge and so have decided to do a bit of combining with that and with this challenge and also with my determination to really get to grips with Photoshop this year. I intend to write the process on the back of the quilts and then make a book of them for reference which is why the edges are scruffy. I don't want to bind them because they will be bulky so satin stitched around this one but the fabric is very bad for fraying. If anyone out there has any suggestions for a bulkless binding I would certainly appreciate the advice. Somewhere along the way all these different experiments  will inspire me towards a finished piece, with lots of fun along the way.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Little Bag Finally Finished

Back in December I posted pictures of my Little Bag with a Little Lime Green. At that point, I was struggling with the drawstrings. Well, just yesterday I finally got it finished. I resorted to embroidery floss since it was the only thing I could get through the fabric to form the loops.

The bag was a challenge and kind of fun, but I'm not sure if I'll make another. I did recently stumble across some partially assembled Annie's Choice blocks that are in black, white and red. I may think about trying to get those assembled into a quilt for the Challenge as well. I've been enjoying seeing all of the black and white projects so much I just want to keep with it!

You can see all of the original Little Bag construction photos here:

And so it begins...

The pieces are cut and the stitching has begun!  There will be 60 blocks in all ~ the first 21 are pieced.

These are the selvages from the two background fabrics ~ and you can click here to see the online album I've started to show my progress on this quilt.

I'll also be posting about this quilt on my blog ~ just loving how this one is translating from vision to design wall!


Friday, January 16, 2009

Black, White and Yellow

A friend gave me fat quarters of these last spring. They have been in a safe place.
I started to use them and realized they could be for the Black and White Challenge!!!!!! Using a pattern for the Bridget Bag, I made two.
This one is about 13 x 8 inches.
The larger one is about 20 x 11 inches. Both have squared off bottoms and pockets on the linings.

I used my own fabric for the linings and a solid black for the handles because I needed yardage not available in the fat quarters.
I still have enough fabric for another little bag.........not right away.

I don't intend this to be my only Black and White project for the year. There will be more..............

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Auditioning fabrics

I am suffering from 'flu at the moment and am lacking inspiration so decided to use my participation in the Friday Block Party to audition some of the blacks and whites I have collected. I haven't done any traditional piecing for years so I know that some of my points don't match but at least it was better than staying in bed feeling sorry for myself.

Tumbling Blocks and Hexagons

I haven't quite figured out the best way to reply to comments yet here.. so I thought I would just write a new post.. so much fun that Jackie set up this blog for us!
I'm making two quilts for the challenge.. the first one.. the tumbling block is for my oldest son. He is the most mathematically minded of the two, and will enjoy the optical illusion of the blocks. Although I think I will get tired of sewing all these cubes that look almost the same. It is much more enjoyable for me to make my quilts with a little more variety. But he will really like this. The other son will be getting something totally different.. but I'm not quite sure what yet. Probably more along the lines of a string quilt.. we'll see.

Anyways.. here is where I got my pattern. This old leaflet from "The Remnant Shop" in Sesser Illinois. (you can of course click the pic to see details). Some really fun patterns here.. if any of you would like a copy of them just give me a shout. But as a word of caution, there are no directions how to put the blocks together.. it is just the patterns and the little pictures inside the blocks.

This is the block I'm using.. the diamond. I enlarged it a bit.

At first I was pretty worried. This did NOT look like it was going to work. When I laid the three diamonds out to make a cube.. it didn't seem as if they were going to go together right. I almost stopped and remade the pattern.. thinking it had to be angled differently so that all the corners would match. Pacman. Remember him?

Good thing I decided to sew one together first. It works perfectly! And it really sews up a lot easier than it looks. You just go right up TO the corner of each diamond when you make your seam.. not beyond it. I had to put a little dot on the first corner with a pencil so I'd know where to stop, but after that you can see by your last seam..

Then on the back, I used
Cathi's method of pressing the seams. In fact.. I am using a lot of her methods to help me make this quilt.. and I didn't even tell her until now. But she is the Queen of Hexagons.

So as you can see, the Tumbling Block pattern is basically just hexagons. I will sew the cubes together just like you would a Grandmother's Garden. Again.. Cathi has a great tutorial on how to do this. Here is my own diagram of what I want mine to go like. I traced around the "Flowers" with black marker so I could see better how to put it all together..
Of course I'll still have to fill in with some of the cubes.. but I don't think that will be all that difficult. I'll keep you all posted.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Some Black and White and Pink Inspiration

Hello Everyone,

I just received a little Black and White inspiration in the mail today. This pattern came....

In this magazine....

It is a 3 part series. So if you are interested, quick go run and get the magazine!

Until next time,


This is the red fabric I'm using for the Red Delicious apple core quilt.

I had only an FQ of it. Unfortunately, there's no selvage on the FQ and so I have no information about it -- the manufacturer, the name of the design, nothing. As my plan is to keep the red the one constant in the apple core quilt, I'd really like to find out any information I can about this fabric so that I can try to find a bit more of it. If you click on the photo, you'll see the close-up and lots of detail. I'm hoping that someone will recognize the print and hopefully have the details on it.

I'd really appreciate any information about it that would help! Thanks!

Update: A piece of this fabric has been found and is on its way to me. The blogging community is amazing!! It is a Kaufman print called Oriental Traditions. Thank you everyone for your assistance!

My new treasure

Last month Aviva offered a stash of black and white nickels. I thought you might like to see this generous treasure that I started cutting into. Perfect for my scrap quilt! Thanks so much, Aviva!