Friday, October 31, 2008

Busy today

I have been busy today and I wanted to share what I have done. I put the letters for Merry Christmas together. I was so afraid I would discover I had spelled it wrong! I added a border around the house block. I am going to put small houses and Christmas trees up each side. I have a beautiful piece of fabric that is a winter scene. I can't decide whether to use it as a border or for the back. I am going to take the other house blocks I made and put them together for something else.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

work has started...

Hi there,
I have been enjoying all the work that has been going on around here....that is a seriously awesome castle! I finished a big quilt at the beginning of October and I have been stuck in a creative lull. The silence is deafening.

SO, I turned 34 and decided that I needed to just get myself out of bed an hour earlier and start the day off right, with exercise or quilting....well, I can do the quilting. I have been working on this for a few mornings, not a lot, but I am in love with these chair quilts ,they are magic to me. I was pleased with my first attempt...but all my husband could see was houses. Back to the drawing board...

these are also my first wonky stars and I LOVE THEM...very easy and a great way to use the end scraps from binding. This all will coalesce might be called 6am...because that is when I have been squeezing in time to work on it....maybe some letters...


Quiltpixie here... my castle now is as complete as it gets until I add word borders.

Thanks for all the great ideas re the dragon. For some reason my mind was stuck on needing a novelty print of a dragon. Duh, just build one! As you can see I took the suggestion to be somewhat subtle about it and only show his/her snout...

I changed the front door of the castle too -- the other was just too small -- this one is fused on top...

When I went to put on the thin borders I decided it would be wise to measure the edges as well as through the middle to ensure I was getting the piece nice and square.... Come to find out it was a dang good thing... the top edge was a whole inch longer then either the measurement through the centre or the measurement across the bottom! Found the spot that the seam had started to spread, and solved the problem... If only middle age spread was so easy in real life to solve :-)

I'm thinking the words might end up being "meddle not in the affairs of the dragon; for you are cunchy and taste good with ketchup" Its fun and playful which I find appealing... Other ideas are welcome....

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Thinking warm thoughts...

It is getting cold outside...
but I am inside, thinking warm thoughts...
like Hawaii warm...
like beach warm...
almost felt like I was there, until I sit in a skating rink for an hour this afternoon!!!

More warm thoughts or blocks to come...

Trees and forests

Brenda here with a forest of wonky trees. I'm quite liking these trees -- they remind me of the American Elms that form an archway along my street. I borrowed the idea of someone else in this blog. Thanks. I've made lots of pine trees, but after sewing all those triangular sky pieces to the house roofs, this was a nice change. I used a bit of curved piecing on the tree trunks, and some of the trees also have words on this, advice or otherwise.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

First Houses

Robyn here - So these are my first 12 houses, (in no particular order)... I figure I'll need about 28, so I have a ways to go!! I still don't think it'll fit on the spare bed like my husband would like, but it should be a nice sized lap quilt for cuddling under and reading. I'm enjoying piecing on the fly! Very fun.... though I've had to rip out a few seams to go back and add more background fabric so I don't end up cutting rooftop corners when I do the final piecing... it should be interesting trying to get these all together!

Words of inspiration from Brenda

I've been making words for my Advice from Home quilt and this is today's word. It helps me remember that I make quilts for fun, and to enjoy playing with fabric and shapes and words.
Here's all my words of advice for my sons:

Back to letters

I've got my the blocks for the center of my quilt assembled - I don't usually make square quilts either but at this point the center is 72 inches square and I'm going to finish it with my pieced letter border that will go around the entire quilt.

I've really gone round and round about the size and shape of this quilt which is silly, I'm going to just let it be the size it wants to be. The blocks I wanted to use are all there and when the borders are right I'll know it.

The construction crew returned to my castle today :-) Wish the stars were out in the sky, but maybe a fused one tomorrow as its all sewn together now :-)

My castle has a little middle age pread going on towards the top, but its all squared up and works for me :-)

Its about 20X 23 inches, so not huge... I am glad I don't have to climb all the stairs that must be inside it though -- or pay the hydro bill given the number of rooms with lights on! :-)

I've been toying with a couple of ideas around this castle. One would be a fun fire breathing dragon in the sky... I'd need to find the right fabric and do a fused applique. I don't have the right fabric in my collection, so I think this idea is likely to burn up before happening.

The other idea is words -- specifically "In my Father's house there are many rooms". I'm concerned that that may be too many words for the castle size though...

I'm also thinking I may add a large fused door or two on the right hand bottom panel area -- I think the current door will get pretty swallowed up when I add more fabric on that side, and it feels a little small for a castle of this size...

More Progress

I worked on the Home Sweet Home quilt this weekend. So far, so good. Tonya was right, those Ms and Ws look fine now that they are sewn into the top. I added some hearts to it, I got the 'center' together. Now it is measuring almost square, so I think I need to add more to it as I am not a huge fan of square quilts and I think I want this a bit bigger. Not a lot, but a little. I'm thinking a row of something along either the top of the bottom then a zig zag border around the whole thing. I'm not going to have a chance to work on it again until this weekend, but I'm thinking about what to add and would love to hear suggestions.

Greetings from Oregon!

Hello! My name is Cindy and I am a traditional quilter from Oregon. I have joined the 'winter class' to learn how to push limits and try something without a pattern.

I am anxious to learn more about wonky. I have watched it for a couple of years. Guess it is time to take the plunge. I look forward to group comments and support.

Monday, October 27, 2008

On a Roll!

I have been so busy the last two days. I have made some Christmas houses and I have Merry put together. I am going to do Christmas tomorrow. The grandson's other grandparents are here so I am getting a break.

We took my 90 year old mother and the grandson to vote today. I want him to know how important it is to have you say. you can't complain if you have had your say. I feel like this election is going to be remembered for a long time and I want to be able to tell him that he went with his great-grandmother to vote.

I love the houses I made. Now I have to figure out to put it all together. Do you think we could all get together at my house one afternoon!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Still here too

I am still here too. I have been doing a couple of things and trying to encourage Bridget, my creative muse, to come home. I think I have convinced her to come back. I did some Tonya letters yesterday and it was so fun! Her letter tutorials are great fun to do and to read. She writes them as if she was sitting beside you talking you through the process. I had not done much with letters before. Tonya makes it easy and fun. I am away from my machine and fabric this weekend so sorry no pics.

Coming up for air

Hi everyone

I'm still here, but haven't started my project yet. I decided that I really needed to clear some UFO's from Tonya's summer class before I started on this one so I'm busy hand quilting to clear the backlog.

I'm getting floss/perle threads together for the Halloween quilt I showed in my first post. I found some wicked glow in the dark white floss the other day which I can't wait to use!

More as and when.

Friday, October 24, 2008


I am NOT in Hawaii! I repeat... I am NOT in Hawaii!!! (I might wish I was... but I am not!)

But rather, I can be found in frosty, chilly upstate NY...
where there are lots of leaves to rake..but it is sunny....
I don't really have a plan set for this quilt which I plan to have raffled off in January but this is what I am up to so far...
Do you all start with a sketched plan???

How about a free pieced hibiscus??? ideas??? I am trying things out in the sewing room but am not sure how it is going to turn out, stay tuned.....

I know not what I am doing!

Hello. I'm LauraJ. I live in Atlantic Canada with my son.
I've joined this group project/class to make something.
I have no plan in my head what my finished quilt will look like.
I'm stumped.
Although, the pile of neutral strips I cut out look pretty in the basket.
It's a start right?

Until next goal is to figure out how to make wonky houses.
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Hi, I'm Tab

I live in central Wisconsin. I'm married with 3 boys. I've dabbled in quilting for quite a few years, but really started actually accomplishing things in the last year or so. I'm obsessed with mini quilts lately.
I haven't quite decided what I'm going to do for this quilt along. I have 3-4 ideas in my head. As soon as Halloween is over I plan to start.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Sorry I have not posted

Life and work just get in the way of playing and quilting. I finally finished the car quilt I was working on for my grandson. My husband is happy with the cars but hates the rest of the fabric. My grandson and granddaughter actually picked most of the fabric and especially the cars and drivers. Such fun.

I started on my houses for my project. I obviously have a lot to learn. I am sure with practice my houses will get better. I guess I should read the tutorial one more time. What do you think?

I have so many ideas in my head, but they are harder than I expected to turn into a quilt. Guess thats what keeps me trying

There's no place like home

Knit One Quilt Too Kristin here. After a couple of hectic weeks, I finally have time to show my progress on the red and white quilt. I immediately thought of Dorothy and had to do the Wizard of Oz theme. I put in four houses for the four of us. Each representing us in some way (me- the quilted window, Chloe- the house with dog bones and a heart, Ryan- the trains, hubby- the lovey dovey words. I then had to make a wee house for Scrabble. It was a lot of fun and I finally got to make a bunch of wonky trees to go with them. I can't figure out how to put the words on. All together at the top or bottom, or going around the borders? Any thoughts? There will be one more tree to fill out the middle space on the top, so it will be more or less square.

This second little top came about when I decided to do another of Chloe's sweet little houses. I'm not sure what I'll do with this yet. I'm enjoying seeing all the amazing creativity here!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Introducing myself

Hi All! I'm Robyn from Erie, Colorado. I'm working part time, and really enjoying the rest of my time home with my 7 month old (tomorrow) baby girl. I'm very new at this quilting thing, but loving every minute of it, (and spending every free minute I have!) So far everything I've done is pretty much off the cuff, but I love the wonky look and the idea of quilting, and designing, on the fly.

I've always sewn... just little things for the dolls I made when I was a kid. And for years now quilting has been my goal. I'm currently finishing up my third - and definitely best - quilt. It'll be done before Sunday for sure, (when I have to give it as a baby shower gift!!)

I have a vision for my class quilt... I'm going to go with House. I want to make many little houses around the border of a starry sky background. So that means many stars as well. I foresee many scraps!! If I am really ambitious, I may put some words around the back edge as well. My husband wants this quilt for our spare bed, which is a double. I guess it just depends on how many houses I can make!!

Nice to meet you all! And I look forward to quilting with you!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Get Well

Ok, I'm back at it... I took a break on this... I have to say the letters went together so quick and easy. but setting the stars in the sky really twisted a few hairs on my head... Anywho, yeah, it's more complex, But I just knew what I wanted for this, and I will be so happy when its done and it's put to use! My hubby has first dibs... I asked him if he could at least give me aheads up when he plans on getting sick...

I've gotten to practice my houses, letters, wonky stars, crosses, bottles, apples,curves, and a challenging nurse... (And a good amount of patience...) But it was worth it.... ;-)

now on to quilting...

Home Sweet Home

Well I did it...this weekend I sat down and actually started sewing this project! I made the words HOME SWEET HOME, and a block with a house and tree. Its not that impressive compared to what some of you have done, but I am very pleased. My little m's and the w are a little strange. I might fix them or maybe not. We'll see. I need to play around with placement and figure out what else to add to them. I'm thinking maybe some hearts and some sort of triangles. I don't want to complicate things too much right now, or I'll get overwhelmed and this will never get finished.

More advice from home

My neighbourly advice is expanding to take over most of my sewing room floor. I think there's 21 houses, some huge, some little, including that tiny one at the bottom right with no words, but just an apple with a bite out of it. (Advice: An apple a day...). I'm hoping to get this to throw size. I have a few more words to make, then I'll attempt to put this puzzle together. Wander over to my blog to see more houses for another project -- these aren't wonky, but they're still fun.

Monday, October 20, 2008

First Attempts...

and mixed results!
Sharon here. Here is my first attempt at doing the letters. These are just a test. I'll be doing something else for my project. I thought these were harder to do than I expected! I'm not entirely happy with these. I think the "H" is too small for the rest of the letters, and the "M" is too big. I've even cut it down a couple of times! I suppose that I'll get more consistent as I do more. The letters do look better when put on the background fabric!

These are my first attempts at making the jars. They were harder than expected too! But I think they came out pretty good. Not quite as "wonky" as I was hoping for, but OK.
My project is going to be a version of the witch's pantry. I'm thinking of saying "Come in and sit for a spell". I'm currently researching what ingredients one might find in a witch's pantry and trying to match that up with some of my fabrics.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Less space is better

I'm getting better with the letters - I think part of the problem with Heart was that there was too much space in between the letters. While I'm not using Tonya's detailed *hot to's* for each of the letters, I did read over the introduction for tips.

I also calculated the size of the quilt if I used all the blocks I have here and it's pretty bit (90 x 108). There were extra's sent to me so I'm going to go back and recount how many I have if I just use one from everyone. I'm going to machine quilt this so if I can't manage to get everyone's blocks in making it smaller then I"ll go with the larger version.

Friday, October 17, 2008


Okay, I wimped out on the snowflakes. I had a few contractions and thought I'd better just get this done. Of course, as soon as I was done quilting, everything settled down and now my houses have no snowflakes. Oh well!
I'm still planning on making some more things to go with this crib quilt...I'm having too much fun to stop now :)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A change of *heart*

I think rather than starting a new project - I'm going to finish a project that's been waiting for me to work on since February. After the first anniversary of HeartStrings, I received blocks from members to use in a quilt for myself with the goal of creating a border with free pieced letters.

So today, I pulled out the blocks and started working on the layout and my word border. Since our theme is House, Home, or Pantry my project should qualify since my home is where I do all my HeartStrings work.

Words on Brenda's wall

I've been making words for my advice from home quilt. These are some of the things I say regularly to my sons. I'm trying to limit my advice to one word: Rush (usually I say hurry), Brush (your teeth, hair) Hush (how many times don't we ask our children to use their inside voices) Call (let me know what you're up to; Wash (are you presentable for the public) and of coure Love. I may make some more, or not. How about Flush (clean up after yourself) and Breathe (slow down, control yourself) or Think?


I picked up a copy of Liberated Quiltmkaing at the library yesterday and spent the evening reading it. It was fun to see so much of the stuff that I learned in Gwen's class so many years ago and it really made me want to call in sick and sew all day but, sadly, the sewing will need to wait until the weekend.
I am wondering if there was any more news about the possibility of having this great book republished?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Hi everyone,
I've just started learning and doing improvisational piecing, so I am very happy to be part of this group! I've been sewing for about 40 years and quilting for 24. I work in the quilting industry full-time, writing pattern instructions among other things for a national magazine. I find that the only projects I get finished are the ones with a deadline, so we'll see how this goes! I live at the base of the Rocky Mountains in Littleton, Colorado. Right now I'm going to piece some wonky houses while I watch the presidential debate.

In Stitches,

I Think Too Much

You know, part of the reason that I decided to play along is that I'm, uh, a bit particular about planning and cutting and piecing. My hope is that by embracing my inner wonk I can get over myself a bit.

I'm still on board for that. I have a 'design proposal' in my brain, a target finished size, a color scheme, even the potential location for hanging my finished work of wonk.

So why haven't I taken scissors to fabric yet? Well, I'm thinking a lot, that's why. I have 56 letters and spaces in the words I want to use. Some of the words need to be emphasized, so they'll be bigger than the others. Based upon the desired finished size of my quilt (ballpark!), I'll have 5 rows of words, with each of the first 3 rows finishing out to approximately 58.5". That means, based upon the number of letters in a row and considering the highlighted words, each letter will be between 1.5 and 4.5 inches wide and 1.5 to 6 inches tall. And yes, I've taken into account tall letters vs. short letters and wide vs. skinny for Every. Single. Letter.


So here it is: The bulk of my project will be words, with pictures (coffee cups!) as, what? Fill-in? Accessories? Since the WORDS are what will determine the look and size of the finished project, is there any hope that all this thinking is not necessarily overkill?

I'm off to read and re-read every wonky tutorial and discussion that I can get my hands on (again). Everyone makes it look so easy - hopefully it's just a matter of making that first cut...

Log Cabin Flowers with Vase

This is Tonya. I love everybody's work - ya'll are more motivated than I have been lately.

Jacquie has made a great vase and intends to put log cabin flowers in it. I love it. Here are a couple of different ways that I can think of to put it all together. First off would be to make longer stems and add strips of background fabric to each side of the stem. Attach that to the bottom of the flower and add some background at the top of the flower too. Do that for both flowers. Then on one flower add a wider strip of background. You'd end up with something like this:

Then you'd slice across the unit that has the additional background. Do that at an angle, then add the other flower. Voila. You'd add background to both sides of the flowers, then you can add them to the vase. I also played around here with adding an additional lip to the top of the vase to make the opening wider.

The other option I can see would be to make this in rows. A top row with the flowers, a middle row with stems (just insert strips, you can even overlap them) and then the vase.

Good luck!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Houses in the snow

Wow, I am so impressed with everyone's pics! I'm posting my winter houses. I've since sewn them with a dark blue sky and plain white (snow) for the bottom of my little quilt. I was thinking of doing wonky snowflakes in the sky, but I can't get them small enough. Any suggestions? I'm thinking of slicing off the bottom of my quilt and adding some more houses. I'm also thinking of making some more things to go with this quilt, maybe a wall hanging and pillow cover.

My other plans include a tree skirt with words around the outside, but it's still in the planning phase.
p.s. sorry about the poor photo quality. These houses are nice and bright. My camera just returned from being fixed (thank goodness!)