Finished!

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I finished the Luxury Essentials quilt.

Here it is after the hand quilting was done.

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Teddy Had to test it out

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But he lost interest when I got out the ruler and rotary cutter to trim it….

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I used almost every last bit of the fabric in the fat quarter bundle

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But I saved 3 for the binding.   I cut the binding strips at 2.5 inches

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And here it is bound

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It is fresh out of the dryer after it had a good washing.    I used cotton batting so it has that crinkled look from the shrink which I love.

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Here is the back.

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I started this one on Nov 17  ….see that post here http://timquilts.com/2014/11/17/fabric-give-away/

Here is a post about the quilting  which I started on Dec 1 http://timquilts.com/2014/12/01/quilting-begins-2/

and here is one about how to make the block  http://timquilts.com/2014/12/02/block-layoutmeasurements/

I am really happy with the finished quilt!
Now back to work on some of the others

 

Happy Quilting

Tim

Christmas photos

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A few years I decided to make a Christmas quilt every year.  I take a picture of Teddy with the quilt .

Here is the first one I made

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The next year I Hand quilted an antique red and green top

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The back shows the quilting better

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The next year I hand quilted a vintage table cloth

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I added the red border

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I didn’t get one done last year :(   I finished 12 quilts but no Christmas quilt.

This year I am counting the Reindeer Snowflake quilt as the Christmas Quilt

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and the tree skirt

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I didn’t make a full-sized Christmas quilt this year…..and Teddy went to the groomer today and is looking particularly festive so I took a few pictures of him with the quilt I am working on today.

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I should have this quilt done this week if all goes well

Happy Quilting

MouseSewingAnimatedTime

Tim

 

 

Thinking

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I have spent the day hand quilting the Luxury Essentials quilt.

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and while I am quilting I have time to think.   (Teddy thinks too, but I suspect we think about different things. )

I have been thinking and thinking about what I will make with the Bella Suede bundle of fabric.

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I have a few dozen Ideas of quilts that I think would be great with these fabrics so it will be hard to make up my mind. I suspect I won’t know for sure until I actually start.  I really hardly ever start with a fully developed plan.

I hope to have the current quilt finished in the next week or so, and getting close to the end of one always makes me get excited about the next one.

I already have a dozen or more in progress but I can’t keep from thinking about more.   So many ideas, so many dreams, so much fun!

The Holiday Season gets a little hectic and we tend to get stressed and frantic but quilting is so calming and such a great stress relief.    I hope you can take some time for yourself in the coming days to relax and quilt and think  and dream.

Happy quilting
Tim

Learning from the past

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I have hand quilted many vintage and antique quilt tops.  I have close to 300 old tops in my collection.  I have looked at and worked on a lot of quilts.  These old quilts can teach us much.    Today I am working on hand quilting this top that I made.

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I realize that my perspective has been influenced by all the old tops I work on.    As I work at hand quilting this one I see that some of my seams aren’t meeting up perfectly.  Click on the picture blow to enlarge it and you can see that some of the seams don’t line up perfectly…I circled them in yellow.

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Perfectionists and quilt police might need to cover their ears now.   It doesn’t bother me at all!   It is not perfect and I am totally OK with that.  All of the antique tops I have worked on have many imperfections and I don’t think it detracts from them at all.

Look at how uneven the borders are on this

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They are irregular in width and quilt wavy the quilt is not square and I still think it looks great.

Quilt makers in the past didn’t have a million specialty rulers, rotary cutters, die cutters, computer programs, fancy machines, detailed patterns, and shelves full of quilting books.   They had a basic machine (or just a needle and thread) and cardboard templates, scissors, and a pencil.   They made beautiful quilts!  Beautiful but NOT perfect.   I am not saying that we should not try to be accurate, or that we shouldn’t use new technology, what I am saying is that sometimes it is a good idea to look at the big picture.   The world isn’t going to end if all your points don’t match.  The quilt police are not coming to your house to arrest you if one side of your quilt is 1/2′ longer than the other.  If you ran out of fabric and had to piece 2 chunks together to make one it will not make it less beautiful.

Look at this antique top

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I think it will make a great quilt, but it is not perfect…..look at the piecing

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chopped of points and 2 fabrics joined to make one square, and it still works.

here is one I quilted a few years ago

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if you look closer you can see the imperfections in the piecing

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Each block was made by a different person and they are all different so none of them line up correctly.   This does not make it a failed quilt….it makes it unique.

That is a pretty extreme example of points not matching and those I make aren’t that off, but it illustrates the point.   If it isn’t perfect it is not a disaster.

So do your best and use all the techniques you have learned but if a point gets cut off or a seam doesn’t line up perfectly don’t lose sleep over it, our quilting past is full of imperfect quilts and they are no less beautiful or treasured because of it.

Happy Quilting

Tim

 

Progress

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I have made some hand quilting progress.  I have all but the outside row finished on the Luxury Essentials quilt.

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It might be hard to see the quilting in the picture so here is the back

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Teddy approves

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I added a clear finish to my new Grace Hoop

It really soaked it up and I need to add another coat or 2.

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I have been doing some baking for Christmas gifts

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The real challenge is to not eat them all ;)

Back to work

Happy Quilting

Tim

Yule log

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Last year the power company did some tree trimming near the office and they cut some birch branches that I could not let go into the shredder.   I knew that some day I would make them into something.    Today was the day.

I made my version of a Yule Log.

The burning a Yule Log likely started thousands of years ago, most likely in Northern Europe as a winter festival. Each region apparently had its own custom. One Scandinavian Solstice festival was known as Jule which was pronounced Yule. Families would go out into the forest, cut down a huge tree and drag it home, and then set afire. If it was too big for the hearth, they let it hang out into the room! Most cultures seemed to view the Yule log as providing a magical protection over those who burned it.
Some traditions tried to keep the fire burning all year, others for 12 days, which may have been the start of the Twelve Days of Christmas. Keeping a piece of the log and using it to light next year’s Yule log appears to have been a fairly universal tradition. The log’s role was primarily one of bringing prosperity and protection from evil – by keeping the remnant of the log all the year the protection was said to remain across the year.

 

I don’t have room to but a whole tree in the house so I am making my version with candles.

First I cut some of the birch branches into small logs

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I am using tealight candles

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I drill a hole in the end of the log with a 1 1/2 inch forstner bit

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I bought a wooden base at the craft store

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3 log pieces and some greenery berries and a bird are added

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It makes a pretty centerpiece and the candles are easy to replace.

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I posted pictures of my Christmas Tree before

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The pine cones were driving me crazy because I didn’t have enough snow on them so I took them off and added more

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Teddy is tired of Christmas decorating

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I think we are done now so back to quilting

Happy Decorating

Tim

 

Zipper Quilt Top

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I couldn’t resist this one.   I purchased this top from eBay.  It was made by the seller’s grandmother sometime between 1968 and 1978 which certainly fits with the fact that it is made of polyester double-knit fabric.

I can hear several groans out there.   Who would ever want a polyester quilt!?    Believe it or not there is an emerging group of people who collect polyester quilts.   Keep in mind that the quilting community in the 70’s was very different from today.  There were not many shops that specialized in quilting and fabric shops were chock full of polyester fabrics. ( I wasn’t a fabric buyer at the time but remember going to Minnesota Fabrics with my mom)     Quilters used what was available and the bonus to us today is that the fabric will likely last for another hundred years without any fading or deterioration. Collectors are sort of nostalgic for the era of their youth so for people of a certain age these quilts are cool.    I do plan to hand quilt it, and I plan to use polyester batting.   I might even try to find polyester backing fabric.

I don’t know what the maker would have called the pattern but it looks like zippers to me.

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It is a very simple pattern.   The pieces are 3 inches by 8 inches.

It does have a few places where the seams need repair

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And there are plenty of thread tails to trim off of the back

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but because it is polyester double-knit there is no raveling.

Teddy couldn’t stop looking at the fabric

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He is not sure what to make of it.

I think he will approve once it is done…..or perhaps not since he is not old enough to remember polyester.

I have been snowflake obsessed and I think this last batch has got it out of my system for a while.

I added another set of 10 patterns to my Etsy store https://www.etsy.com/shop/timquilts

here are a few
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I bought the finish for the quilt frame and I want to get that done….and I have a few other holiday projects in mind for the weekend…..but likely I will be quilting away and wonder where the weekend went.   So many quilts so little time.

Happy Quilting

Tim