Sunday, October 23, 2016

Tic Tac Hoot!

Tic Tac Hoot was the last Tic Tac Who? quilt I designed.  I had the other two finished when my daughter suggested an owl version.  I love owls!  I think it dates back to being a Brownie leader in Halifax in university.  My leader name was Sleepy Owl. It's a long story, but I promise I was wide awake and enthusiastic!

Tic Tac Hoot quilt by Canuck Quilter Designs
Tic Tac Hoot

Tic Tac Hoot turned out very well in the end, after a very slow start!  My first attempt at designing an owl yielded something that looked more like a bat, and definitely wasn't baby-cute.

Owl block looks like a bat
Imagine this guy in black and you've got a bat!
I tweaked a little and came up with something I thought would work so I stitched him up in fabric.

Oh, that beak! This looked more like an owl but something was off, so I tried again.

I was getting closer to a finish!  I popped him into the quilt layout on the design wall...

I really thought the green background and the darker sashing would work, but once it was on the wall, I couldn't bring myself to start sewing everything together. It stayed up on the wall a few days, and still I didn't want to sew it up, which was a pretty good sign that I wouldn't be happy with it this way.

I decided that the green background behind the owl was the problem. It didn't "float" the owl on the quilt and it interrupted the diagonal of floating blocks created by the X blocks.  Also, it doesn't seem so in the photo above, but the X blocks disappeared a bit on that darker background.  Back to the shop I went, to buy the fabric I had briefly considered for the sashing and discarded as too bland.  I also chose slightly lighter browns for the owl.

Tic Tac Hoot owl block by Canuck Quilter Designs
Final version of owl block

Much better!  The lighter sashing/background softened up the look.

Tic Tac Hoot by Canuck Quilter Designs
Tic Tac Hoot quilting 

Again, I quilted with my walking foot.  The owl is stitched in the ditch. For the rest of the quilt I started an all-over design, but didn't like how it played with the quilt as a whole.  Next I tried circles, then decided to do squares instead, then picked out the 7 squares I had finished and went back to circles!  Oh, and I found a spot where I had picked out a seam to fix some alignment then somehow missed re-sewing part of it.  Really?  I practiced a little bit of hand stitching to fix that little oops.

I think you get the idea that this quilt made me work a little harder than the other two!  It isn't a harder design.  I guess I was just due for a few quilting hiccups.

I was very happy to finally get the binding on.  That part went smoothly at least!  I love these little green dots, and the brown and leaf print for the backing.

Now all that's left to do is to finish the pattern!  Almost done. If all goes well, I'll be sending out to testers by the end of the week.


  1. You do have a keen eye for matching up your colors perfectly! Your owl is adorable too! --"Love"

  2. This is just adorable! And what a journey for you to get it to this point. I applaud your tenacity!

  3. What a great quilt! Love how the owl turned out. How exactly do you get such perfect circles with a walking foot?

  4. The owl is especially cute, and would be perfect for an older child. You do have a great eye for colour and proportion. Our Brownie leaders were Brown Owl and Tawny Owl. Sleepy Owl would have been fun!

  5. It looks terrific! I really like the way you quilted it with the circles in the alternate blocks.

  6. The owl is adorable and the green makes my heart sing. Beautiful quilt!

  7. All of your tic tac quilts are just super cute, can't pick a favorite!!

  8. Thanks for sharing some of your process. This is darling! The ears you decided on and moving the beak closer to the eyes made a huge difference.

  9. These patterns are so cute and I admire your determination in ripping out quilting you don't like. (I just tell myself it's a way to remember how much I've grown and learned from my mistakes!) As for the fabric that you sewed the wrong side - I have a quilting friend who reminds my guild regularly that fabric has two sides. And while it's often obvious what the wrong side is, sometimes that wrong side IS right! The bag you sewed for yourself is perfect - making use of your awesome snowflake patterns was genius! And how very exciting with the zipper. I love how tackling something like that sometimes turns out so much easier than anticipated.

  10. So flippin' cute!!! I adore this little owl. And watching your design process was interesting too. I'm like that also, if it sits on the design wall for days, something needs to change. :)

  11. Well, I am glad I decided to catch up with your blog, because these last four posts show three adorable quilts! Think I"m partial to the dog although that owl is too cute! I especially loved reading your process in the owl quilt, Joanne. Thanks for writing it out and taking all the pics. You know, I went back and forth and back and forth at least 4-5 times studying the photos to see 'what? I didn't notice...' (the owl floating better, or the interruption of the diagonal, which I still think bothered the maker more than the viewer, just sayin'). It amazes me how we agonize over decisions that in the end, others didn't see as so agonizing in the original (unloved) version or layout. That beak for another, didn't and still doesn't bother me even when I first read about your block construction a while back! I DO love the softer colours you went with for the owl, LOVE the green leaf print on the front, LOVE the paws backing for the dog one too btw, and that striped binding is perfect! One other piece of your wisdom that resonates with me is the having it sit on the design wall and not being anxious to sew it up being an indicator that you won't like it. I will remember that. If you still need a tester, let me know the timeline and if I can squeeze it in, I'd love to test for you again.

  12. I'm working on a baby quilt right now. Wish I had waited; these are sew cute. Looking forward to the pattern!


Thank you for visiting. I truly appreciate your comments and will try to reply to comments by email if your commenting staus is not set to "no-reply".

If you have a question, emailing me directly at will ensure I have your address to respond. I promise I will not share your email address and I will not use it for any purpose other than replying to your message.