Monday, July 1, 2024

Celebrating Canada Day with Quilts

Happy Canada Day!  

Pattern: 150 by Canuck Quilter Designs
Made for Canada's 150th anniversary in 2017
using Northcott's 2017 Oh Canada collection

I hope all my Canadian friends are enjoying a lovely summer celebration to mark Canada's 157th birthday. It's a little quiet here in Iowa (they'll be celebrating their own holiday on Thursday) and it's cold and rainy.  What's a Canadian quilter over here to do?

Well, pulling out some red and white quilts is a good start.  For a little bit of Canada, I pulled out the quilt I made for Canada's 150th anniversary in 2017, pictured above.  Still love this one!

This runner is going on the table for supper tonight.

Scrappy Prairie Point runner

I had planned in turning these fabrics into new placemats in time for today, but I got sick.  I'm on the mend, but in the lingering cough stage of the cold, so energy is pretty much non-existent. There's always next year....

Don't you love that deep red maple leaf print in back?

Playing around in EQ recoloring designs with fabrics from Northcott's Oh Canada collections takes less energy than sewing so that's what I've been doing instead.  Here's what I've come up with so far.  Enjoy!

Flipped Placemats
This is what I'll be making with the fabrics I shared above.

The Flipped set is a quick project.  It uses stitch-and-flip for all the angles, and the runner is made with large bonus HST leftover from making the placemats.

When I'm in British Columbia later this summer, I'll be scouring quilt shops for more red maple leaf fabrics to bring back to make this version of Blaze.

Blaze by Canuck Quilter Designs

I could make it with assorted reds if I don't find the maple leaf fabrics.  I just think it would be a nice companion quilt to my 150th quilt.

How about another placemat choice?  This is Echo Point.

Echo Point by Canuck Quilter Designs

Or about adding a maple leaf in the center of the runner?  Hold on while I start EQ again.  

Here we go:

Yes, I like that!

I mocked up Leafy Pathways too.  I mocked it up in Northcott's Oh Canada, but I think red and white scraps would work really well for this one.  I wonder if I have enough variety left after making my red and white Half-and Half?

Leafy Pathways by Canuck Quilter Designs

Well, that was fun!  Lots of possibilities for when I stop coughing and start sewing!

What are you up to today?

Happy quiting,

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Fixing a mistake I couldn't unsee

Well, it's been a minute or two since my last blog post.  There has been a lot of non-blog friendly work.  Seriously, who really wants a description of balancing the books or typing up packing slips?  I also indulged in some quality time in the garden, planting perennials, potting annuals and sprucing up the flower beds.  This blog post from 2020 still applies.  Gardening and quilting fill my cup in very similar ways. However, now that chiggers and their nasty, super itchy bites have made their annual debut, I'm a little less inclined to get lost in the yard so I'm spending more time perusing my quilty UFO list.

First up:  Finishing my red scrappy version of Half-and-Half, formerly known as the Two-Colour Mystery quilt.

There's one unit turned 180 degrees from how it should be.  Once I saw it, I couldn't unsee it.  I tried to leave it.  If I hadn't noticed it before quilting, I probably could have learned to live with it.  However, knowing it would be fairly quick to fix, I couldn't bring myself to start quilting until I fixed it.  Of course, the quick fix sat unfixed for months before I got around to it!

I pulled the top out today to plan the repair. Step one, I marked the unit with a safety pin so I didn't pick apart the wrong seams.  

Looking at the back of the quilt top, I identified the order the seams around the unit were sewn, so I could rip them in reverse order.  The dark dotted lines show the seams that needed to come out first.

Here's how things looked with those seams ripped.  I ripped about one inch beyond the sides of the unit I wanted remove.

I ripped the third seam....

...and the fourth one and voilĂ , the unit was extracted.

Some of the seams ending in the area I ripped were a little loose, so I restitched a short distance on those seams to make sure things didn't fall apart as I wrangled the quilt top to reinsert the unit.  I then rotated the unit to the correct orientation.  I checked three times that I had it right.  I didn't want to reinsert it the wrong way around after taking the trouble to rip it out!

I took everything to the sewing machine and sewed the seams in the opposite order from the order I ripped:  long sides of the unit first, then the short sides.  You can see below why I ripped the seams a little beyond the edges of the unit I extracted.  It gives me a little slack to move things around as I line things up, and it lets me sew the new seam from edge to edge rather than having to deal with set-in seams.

Getting parts into position

First new seam

Two seams done

I pressed both new seams carefully, taking care to press in opposite directions to the seams they would be meeting when I sewed the final two seams, so I could nest seams.  When sewing the last two seams to finish reinserting the unit, I started and stopped the stitching about an inch beyond where I ripped earlier, so that the new stitching overlapped the existing intact stitches of the original seam on either side of the unit.

Here it is, all fixed.

How about a before-and-after view:

It's not a huge difference, but I feel better about it.  I can't believe that after months of dithering, it only took me about 15 minutes to fix!

Next up, piecing a back.  That will be a fun way to flex some creative muscles without worrying about a deadline.  I'm thinking of piecing an oversized half and half block for the center.  After that I'll have to finally settle on a quilting plan.  At my current pace, I might be able to share the finished quilt by Christmas :).  Hmm.  The scrappy red would look good with my holiday quilts.  Maybe I have a target date to finish this!

Are you working on any UFO's currently.  Please share!

Happy quilting,


Thursday, April 25, 2024

Half and Half (Two-Colour Mystery) Parade of Quilt Tops

It's been a fun two months, watching Two-Colour Mystery quilts take shape.  It's a little daunting to start a project with absolutely no idea what it might look like.  Thank you to all who took the leap and followed the instructions every week.  I hope you all love the quilt you ended up with!

Half and Half : the Two-Colour Mystery Quilt revealed
This throw size version made with Stonehenge Gradations and Crackle fabrics from Northcott

In all 1,600 quilters signed up to receive the clues!  That blew me away!  While I'm sure some saved the clues to use at a later date, I know many quilters stitched away weekly to have a finished quilt top by this week.  If you're on Facebook, you can see many, many lovely versions of the project in the Quilting with Canuck Quilter group.  The range of fabric choices was inspiring.

18 quilters also emailed photos to share here on the blog.  

Let's start with some baby sized versions.

Diane W.

Gail W.

Katie May and @katiemaytoo on IG

Lori B.

Ioleen K.

Next up, some lap sized tops.  You'll notice a few with an alternate block layout. I love to see how quilters start with my pattern then make adjustments to suit their tastes.

Denise Jolly

Denny J.

Jayne S
Notice the lights in this one are scrappy!

Jeanne M.

Karen M.

Kathy Wolf

Lynn B.
Check out the closeup below to see the scrappy beauty.
Lynn B.

Lynda T.
Lots of scrappy goodness here too!

Here are some throw size versions.

Candy Kerber

Dawn N.

Janet L.
This was repurposed fabric - it used to be curtains!

Tanya F.

Finally, some quilters are still working on their quilts, but wanted to share their progress.

Marilyn B.

Vicky O.

If you didn't participate in the quilt-along but are now inspired to create your own version of the quilt, you can find the pattern Half and Half in my Etsy shop as a stand-alone pattern.  This version of the pattern includes 7 sizes, baby to king.

My next task is to figure out a quilting plan for my scrappy Half and Half, which I plan to quilt myself on my domestic sewing machine.  I'll start by stitching in the ditch and hope that inspiration will strike as I stitch.  Wish me luck!  


How will I quilt it?