Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Kaleidoscope Quilt: Take 2

Here's another look at the Kaleidoscope quilt block, made by the same quiltmaker but with slightly different color placement than the previous Kaleidoscope Quilt.

This time we decided to stitch-in-the-ditch through all the block seams and add a small feathered design to fill the 2" outer border.

I began with stitching through all the horizontal and vertical seam lines between all the blocks. This is my usual first step in anchoring a quilt before proceeding with any additional quilting.

Using Sew Art smoke colored nylon monofilament in the top and Presencia brown (color #226) in the bobbin for the anchor quilting, I used the same combination to stitch a ditch pattern. There is no set direction to this--just find a logical path and go for it. I decided to quilt vertically down from the top. On each block I made four passes to finish the ditch quilting. I started at the top, turned at the bottom and ended a line of stitching at the top.

I used a walking foot for the ditch quilting. If you want to avoid turning the quilt and you've become very comfortable with ditch quilting, try using your free motion foot for this step. It's easier and more convenient than you might think, especially for a larger quilt.

Here's a view from the back:

With the ditch quilting of the blocks completed, I quilted around the inside and outside edge of the blue accent strip using matching thread.

For the outer border, I chose a stencil (EK53 2" Ripple Border) that fit the space. I marked it with the Clover fine line white marker which resembles a gel pen. After marking it takes a few seconds for the white mark to appear.

Always test markers on the fabric to make sure it will remove. After a quick rinse the lines have faded. A gentle warm wash with Orvus Paste should remove the ink (See Washing a Quilt).

Copyright ©2009, Sharon Baggs

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Sew Oregon: Day Two

On the drive back home from a mini-vacation to Crater Lake and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival where we saw The Music Man, we stopped by six quilt shops on the Sew Oregon route.
I did the driving while my husband with GPS, laptop, map of Oregon and cell phone in hand expertly mapped out all our stops with precision and great patience.

Our first stop was Thistleberries in the town of Riddle. Hannah picked out a red Moda fat quarter and we were on our way to Something to Crow About in Springfield. Here we found an awesome polka dot print to match our Christmas print perfectly.

On to Callapooya Quilts in Brownsville. Gotta love the small town quilt shops and this was the one I will remember, situated at the end of the sweetest street I've seen in a long time. Hannah was given not just one charm square but enough to make a 9-patch!

We missed the next shop in Albany (The Quilt Loft) because the directions on their website were for I-5 south and we were traveling north--my navigator was very disgruntled over this! We scored big in Salem by visiting Rich's Sew and Vac who gave us two packages of machine needles, followed by Greenbaum's Quilted Forest--always a visual explosion to behold, and finally The Cotton Patch (just north of Salem in Keizer).

Today was the final day of Sew Oregon and I did not make it out to any more shops. Our total of nine shops was just one shy of entering the grand prize drawing (one ticket for every ten shops visited), so I'm keeping my passport with my blocks and will work with Hannah to make our keepsake quilt. Thanks to all the shops who participated; hope you were blessed!

Copyright ©2009, Sharon Baggs

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Sew Oregon: Day One

Here in the great state of Oregon, 35 quilt shops are participating in the third annual Sew Oregon ( from June 25 - July 9, 2009. It's been a few years since I've shop-hopped but thought it would be a fun adventure for my youngest daughter and I to do together.

Children 12 and under receive a novelty charm square from each shop and adults get a free pattern and fabric kit to make a quilt block. All the shops use coordinating fabric from "Have a Sheri Berry Holiday"--Lyndhurst Studio and have created a block featuring their "favorite ornament".

We decided to collect a fat quarter from each shop we visited and found a wonderful retro Christmas print "candy-colored christmas" by the Alexander Henry Fabric Collection. From this print we selected additional fat quarters. The fabric just happens to coordinate very nicely with the shop hop Christmas blocks. (The charm squares Hannah received are pictured 1,2,3 at the lower right-hand corner; she has project plans for those.)

So our first day out was today and we visited three shops. First was Cool Cottons at 2417 SE Hawthorne (Portland). This is where we found the Christmas print that jump-started our whole excursion. There is so much beautiful fabric in this shop and on the porch they feature bolts at $4/yard--very nice for backing a quilt. They also feature "baby bolts" (smaller lots of fabric) and several adorable sewing projects such as a bubble skirt.

Next up was Quilter's Corner at 15717 SE McLoughlin Blvd. (Milwaukie) tucked in a corner lot with other gift and children's clothing shops. Such a welcome entrance and even sweeter ladies inside. The previous owner of the shop I learned to quilt at 11 years ago now teaches classes at this shop. It was fun to see her primitive style, homespun quilts up in the shop and to smell the wonderful smell that was like coming home again.

Our last stop for the day was Canby Quilt and Fabric at 248 NW 1st Ave. (Canby). We had just been in this shop last month and the owner asked if we were going to participate in Sew Oregon. "No time" I said we are!

Copyright ©2009, Sharon Baggs