Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A Quilt for Lee-Ann and Alex's Daughter

So much learning!! Curved piecing... FMQ.... Fiou! 

 This is actually the second quilt I machine-quilt lately, but I don't want to spoil someone's Christmas gift (as if my friends actually read this blog... but hey, you never know). At some point I realized I had way too many quilting project this year - especially considering the major events of February 2014* - and I felt like I needed to up my speed if I was gonna get any or all of them done in time. And sadly... machine quilting is defenetly like taking the car compared to walking somewhere. It is so. much. faster. And I'm actually liking it a lot more then I thought! (the result I mean.. the process is fucking stressful) 

 I bought a new machine when mine broke.. and even if the new one is pretty cheap, it enables me to free-motion quilt. I've been learning.. I feel like I will always be "getting better" at this no matter how many quilts I'd make.. but I admit that even the first one looks much more pretty then I would have imagined and "not too flawed"! It will let me tackle bigger quilts.. and it makes it much less overwhelming to whip-up a baby quilt like this for a baby shower. Not having to plan weeks and weeks of hand quilting ahead of time. 

So... with THIS quilt, I realized that I really suck at echoing. 
But.. that curved piecing is not so bad... Take some, leave some. ;)

*More on that later, really is a whole other post's subject ;)

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

A First Quilt for Simone

 Hoorray! Another quilt finished! This one was for my friend Emilie's daughter Simone, who was born at the end of July. In the process of finishing this quilt, my sewing machine broke. I ended up buying a cheap one from Walmart.. we'll see if I'll curse this decision later ;) So far so good, I've never had a brand new machine and so it feels like a dream. 

 I already wrote about this baby quilt, and it was a lot of trying out new things. I came up with the pattern and composition, made up a paper piecing pattern, and decided to knot this one instead of hand quilting it. I did some hand quilting actually, stitch in the ditch around all of the black shapes. To make them pop. All the white space is knotted. And heavilly knotted.... I like the finished feel and look a lot! But it took just as much time as hand quilting the whole thing. So it's not a time-saving option. But it defenetly adds a great texture. It turned out better then I thought out of the washer-dryer. It looks quilted. Which I love. So.. overall very happy about this one! 

 I also love how the knots are just tiny dots on the background fabric. As I was coming up with the quilt, I wanted it to feel like a sky filled with stars and constellations, so I think the mix of knots and stitch in the ditch worked out well.. I also did a round-corner binding for the first time. The most challenging was cutting my binding fabric on the bias. But it sewed in sooooooo smooth. It really was not hard at all to sew them on the curve, all four corners are flawless and I'm pretty happy! It makes the quilt look softer, the roundness and the light pink.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Madness Quilt

 Well, I must have started this project about a year ago? I tried one or two Anna Maria Horner feathers... and I was kind of hooked. I made a couple for this quilt, and then decided I needed to make a queen size quilt for my own bed. (Don't ask me to make one more of these right now though) 

 Since her actual pattern required A LOT of those feathers (34 for a twin size), and I was starting to realize that I'd be fed up pretty soon - I get really easily bored with repetitive projects - So I came up with a navajo-ish inspired quilt top. Lots of flying geese (maybe more then I thoughts..) and also a compass. Ok, I've actually always fantasized about making those kind of compass patterns, it was always in my wannabe quilter's dreams as a kid. I guess I did it!! It's paper pieced, and was not as hard as I thought it would be. (and it's not perfect) 

 I still have a whole row/border of geese to do. I'm kind of dreading it.. but I'm also looking forward to being done with such a massive quilt top! I will have to make my plain (see sort of sage-forest green) border a bit wider then I thought, otherwise I think the quilt will look too small on our bed. I don't like quilts to "skirt" out too long on low modern beds, but I don't like fighting for blankets either ;)

 I know I want to make the quilt back a solid beige / cream. I'd love to have a pale blanket option for the summer. I am definitely PUZZLED about how to quilt it, though... my first idea was stitch in the ditch everything.. no brainer, and easy. (but boring? will I get too bored and never finish it?) Then I thought of a sort of wonky spiral, starting from the center and going all around... Husband suggested a sort of checker, just straight lines in both directions. It could also be just stripes in one direction - less distracting I think... Oh, I don't know! 

 I know this quilt will look better with lots of quilting for sure. I want it to feel heavy and rigid enough to be our only blanket during the warmer months.. So I know that whatever I do it'll have to be sort of one inch apart max. (So I'd have to figure out something for the negative space if I'd go for stitch in the ditch.)

 Constance and her bébé already love it. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

A Modern Quilt

 I've been working on this quilt top for a little while now. It's for a friend of mine who is expecting a second daughter in July. She only mentioned; I like black and white, it's versatile for kids' rooms. I knew she liked modern quilts, so I tried to make it bold, yet delicate.. if that even makes sense? ;)

 For a bit now, I had been wanting to try hand-pieced hexagons, so I did!! And it was much more fun (and hard) then I thought. I think it's fun as a little accent / border like this. A whole quilt would look just beautiful, but I doubt I'd have the patience.. I also made my own paper-piecing pattern for the wind-chime thingy in the middle. I like challenges.. 

 This quilt is almost 100% made of scraps. Actually, more like little fat quarters I had bought and gathered because I love black and charcoal, and this quilt was a fun way to use some of those. I just loooove how all of white fabrics are a little off. I find it gives it a nice rustic? Homemade? vintage touch.. I know most people would hate real white paired with off-white.. but I love it. I hope my friend feels the same!! I figured... white-white never stays white around babies and tiny kids.. so why not?!

 I went as simple as possible for the background without doing whole-cloth. (Did not have enough of that grey fabric..) Isn't is gorgeous??? I love this pattern, it reminds me of japanese embroidery. Actually, doing a "scrapy" quilt is a good way to use little remains of fabrics that you adore, but only have tiny bits left. I had been keeping that tiny piece of light grey with the anchors.. And also that cream with the tiny black polka dots, I've been saving a couple little 2x2" pieces for ever. Finally found the perfect place for them. :)

 For the quilting, my plan is a mix of stitch in the ditch (by hand) and knotting... I've never knotted a quilt before, and I feel like this is the perfect project to try it. The hexis are THICK.. (appliquéed, and also a lot of folded fabric folded underneath) and the white geometric fabric is really a pain in the but to hand quilt. Somehow those shapes are impossible to go through with the needle. Like if the fabric was coated with something? Anywho.. I think I'll look into knotting! 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Another Quilt for Margot (already)

Yep... I made a second quilt for Sam's daughter. :S

 But this one was so quick!! It's the very first time I am happy with a machine quilted quilt. I recently went to my first ever meeting at the Montreal's Modern Quilt Guild.. and it was fun! (link on sidebar) 

 They brought up a modern traditionalism challenge, and I wanted to try myself at it. I wanted to bring this quilt in at the next sew-in, but Margot came out into the world last week, and I could not resist bringing the quilt with me when I first met her. 

 I started with some traditional star blocks. I new I wanted to make three, and dispose them sort of unconventionally. I don't know the exact name of those.. Ohio stars? Lone stars? .. I love them, the perfect dose of girly and classic, while easy to make modern since they are also geometric-ish? Then I wanted to have some off-centered log cabins, some slashed nine-patches. (I find those are some easy traditional blocks that come out nice and quick. I did not want to have to do complicated piecing for this quilt.) 

 Then I sketched out this sort of chevron "braid-like", or arrow-like stripe to cross the quilt. I find it  really brings the modern twist. Also, I decided to have this daisy print as my background fabric, I find that using a LOT of patterned fabric makes it more modern and busy then "traditional looking". I wanted it too look and feel very scrappy. Making a whole quilt solely from scrap fabrics feels really good for the soul. This is what quilting is about, to me. Making something treasurable, and comforting, out of things unwanted, or unused. A lot of those scraps are left overs from the first quilt I made for her a couple months ago. I wanted the two blankets to match a tiny bit, since they'll most likely be in her room together. This one is significantly smaller then the first one, I hope it can be practical for "on the go" purposes. (it's about 30x30" after some shrinking)

Even the border is all scraps! I knew I wanted a touch of that sunny yellow :) 

 I quilted it with large chevrons. They are a bit wonky, and I made it so on purpose. I knew that it would have been really hard to make them perfect, since I never machine quilt. So better make them wonky to begin with! My sister in law gave me a bunch of sheets she bought in a thrift store, or yard sale. I find that those make awesome backings. They are already nice and soft with the use and love. Quilting through sheets is harder since they are weaved to be resistant. But I knew I was going to machine quilt, so it did not matter. 

 I also quilted that one turquoise star with the stitch in the ditch technique. It was my first try at it and I find it went pretty well! I wanted to highlight one star, and quilt her initial in it. I love that you can see that one star on the back too, since it's quilted. I find that the quilting (the chevrons) make this quilt look more modern, while having one star stitched in the ditch ties it to tradition. I think it would have looked even more modern if my chevrons would have been closer together, making the whole blanket more heavily quilted.. But I wanted it to remain soft and supple, and cuddly. 

Sam has started a really cute tumblr project, sharing one photo of Margot each week, check it out. :) 

Monday, May 6, 2013

I WANNA MAKE THIS : C&C: Button up to 2 block top tutorial

C&C: Button up to 2 block top tutorial: Yet another button up refashion and this time I'm dealing with silk and lace. I bought a 1/4 of lace for a homework project ove...

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Rock-Star Quilt

 I am actually so fuc(&*g proud of this sucker. I think it's safe to say this is my most "achieved" quilt. Those star patterns on the front... not that easy! I actually picked the design before reading advanced on the magazine page I had dog-eared. But I grew a lot, and I am so happy with how it turned out. Sometimes it's much more rewarding to put a lot on your chopping board! 

 Now come on.. when the future-mommy looks like that.. I new I needed to come up with something not tacky, not baby-ish.. and just playful within their style. She told me the nursery for baby-boy was going to be red, black and grey. So.. I went and picked all my fabrics. When I actually saw the nursery, I was so darn happy! Charcoal wall (euh, wow.) white crib, red and white stripped rug from Ikea, bright red rocker. It was just perfect with all the fabrics I had chosen!! 

 So i knew I wanted some sort of star pattern. Stars always remind me of my friend Audrey. I began thinking about this quilt before they knew the gender, and I still think it's quite neutral. I flipped through some magazine and texted them pictures of patterns. They each liked a different one, so I decided to do them both. There IS to sides to a quilt, right? Well... that was a lot more work then I though! (happily, baby quilts are actually small. This one is about 40x40") Like I said, I didn't know I was picking something a bit more complicated then I'm used to.. but oh well! I'm happy I did. Y seams, you don't scare me anymore. I did not even know you existed, or that you were a pain in the bum hole, but now I'm okay with you! This quilt was double the fun, since the top and the back both have intricate patchwork. I feel like you can really try yourself at something more complicated when dealing with a smaller quilt. 

 I decided to incorporate a bit of machine quilting to this one. And.. still not loving it. It feels much more.. tedious? Just not as fun. I really love hand quilting, it's relaxing, I can do it anywhere.. I feel like I have control over where I'm going. And with each project, my stitches are getting better and better. I'm at about 6-7 stitches an inch now, which I feel looks very polished. While I think my machine quilting still looks messy.. 

 I did some echoing for the stars, and some lightning bolts or zig zags for the white background. It turned out very cute in the back too. I was afraid, with such busy quilt back, that the quilting would ruin it. But it aligned very well with the center of the big star. Really happy with how it all looks.. fiou!

There is no shooting a quilt in the backyard without some Constance photo bomb. ;)

Yé! Now let's wait a couple more weeks for this little rocker dude. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Colonelle-Crême Puff's Quilt

 My dear dear friend Samantha is due in a matter of a couple tiny weeks now.. And I just cannot wait to meet her sweet daughter. They had nicknamed her Colonel Cream Puff before knowing the sex, and frankly I can't name her otherwise yet in my head ;)

 It was super fun to think up a more modern quilt for them, trying to match their tastes as best as I could. Here is the final result, I snapped those pictures a couple weeks ago, before giving her the quilt as a birthday present. I love pisces, so many of my friends are under that sign! 

Isn't she pretty? She'll make such a cool Mommy. 

This is the quilt in her crib, photo taken by the future Daddy

Thursday, March 21, 2013

A first quilt for Augustin

I finished this quilt a long time ago now.. around the Holidays? But I have not carved out time to post about it. I gave it to my friend a couple of weeks before she welcomed her second little boy, Augustin. 

I am so proud of this quilt. It really feels perfect to me. I feel like it is the most flawless one I have done so far. It's a diagonal stripe pattern made out of log cabin blocks. I love the fact that pretty much 75% of the fabric involved is some of my dad's old shirts. I find this very romantic, especially since this is a gift for a boy, and a very thrifty Mommy. I quilted it by hand, with simple curves. I felt like an all over simple motif was perfect for this, texture-wise too. 

The photos I took of the finished quilt don't really show the pattern well I find, so here's a shot of the top patchwork, before it got sandwiched and quilted. 

And since I'm a sucked for a cross blanket... (can't get over the Pia Wallen Crux one...I'll own it some day.. some day.) I incorporated some crosses in the back. It's the second quilt that I back with flannel, and I find that it brings a very nice touch, warm and comfy. Especially for a winter baby. 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Maeva* (edit) Nahima's Quilt

WOOOT!! I finished a baby quilt! :) I am so proud of this sucker. 

 I learnt earlier this year that my cousin's girlfriend was expecting, it's going to be the first baby of this generation in my family... And it's a girl. (Just like me! Who was the first baby of our generation on the Trudel side.) Obviously, I got super excited and wanted to make a quilt, but I am not that close to Emile.. I don't know their taste at all. Except that they are quite a bit more hippy then me. So I went with.. hippy friendly, girlish colours, and I hope they'll like it! I went with crisp white for the backing, since the room will be white. 

 I just had just watched the e-course, Creative Quilt Backs when I was working on this. So I decided to incorporate some left-over pieces in a single block for the back of the quilt. I am SOLD. I love having a little something in the back, I will always do that from now on. It's like a little surprise, and a wink to the front design. I also did a real binding for the first time. Taking the time to learn to do it properly, instead of mcguivering it, for once. And it really paid off, I love it. It looks quite sleek. 

 I hand quilted it, like all my quilting projects. I did most of it (all of it?) at the cabin we rented in November. This quilt will always remind me of a slow burning fire in a stove. :) 

I took advantage of the pretty light, and took some pics of Constance. 

I can't wait to give it to them for Christmas, I really hope they love it as much as I do. 
* I have no clue how to spell the name, hope I didn't butcher it. 

Actually they named the baby Nahima. And I'm positive about the spelling. She is really cute.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Baby Blankets W.I.P.

Just a little WIP post, I am really into quilting this year. Like... a little obsessed I have to admit. I'd say this is a great outlet for me to challenge myself, and it feels really good!

First of all, some update on Colonel's quilt. (aka Samantha's baby - follow everyday pregnancy struggles, and other matters in her Boumeries, if you don't already, that is!) I have drafted a color pencil pattern, just to sort out what I need in terms of fabric quantities. I ordered most of it online, and will fill in with scraps, and recycled clothes. This will mostly be half-square-triangles, but the challenge will be to follow this crazy puzzle-like pattern! But I'm exited to start. 

I also started two other baby quilts. (yeah, there is definitely a babyBOOM around me!) 
I followed a pattern from a quilt mag (remember that massive mag stash?) for the first one. I'm doing a log-cabin color pattern for the second one. I opted for the Streak of Lightning pattern. It makes this cool diagonal stipe effect. They are both going to little boys, most probably february babies.