Friday, March 31, 2023

Glow of Spring


In under the wire with a third Island Batik finish for March's It's All Up To You challenge.  I'm using the challenge as motivation to finish this year's teacher quilts.  I have four to make and three are completely done!  This beauty is for Ms. B, the director of and one of the teacher's at Fire Monkey's before school program.  She had his group when he was in Kindergarten!  

Her favorite color is yellow, so I set out to make some cheerful yellow flowers.  I went through all my Island Batik scraps and picked out all my yellows and golds.  The green is an always-available Foundation called Lemongrass, the background is solid white, and the flower center is tangy dotted fabric left over from one of last year's teacher quilts, though I don't know the name of it.  I love how it turned out -- it is very bright and looks like spring! Because the yellows make it almost glow, I named it Glow of Spring.

I'm not sure where I got this block, I don't remember if I saw it somewhere or what.  I do know I cut out all of the pieces with my Accuquilt and the shapes from the 8" Cube.  I quilted in organic wavy lines on the diagonal with Aurifil thread 2134, Spun Gold.  The batting is Hobbs 80/20 and I used Schmetz micrtoex needles for all piecing and quilting. 

The products featured in this post were given to me by Island Batik, Accuquilt, Schmetz, and Aurifil.


I cannot resist using the incredible skyline-view terrace from work for the backdrop of these photos.  Check out that city view!  (That's Charlotte, NC.)

Thanks, Island Batik, for the motivation to get these teacher quilts done early!  I've got one more that isn't quite done yet, but will be well before school starts. 

Wednesday, March 22, 2023


I'm using March's Ambassador's Choice challenge as motivation to get some of the this year's teacher quilts done early.  Today's quilt is for Ms. L, one of the before-school teachers.  Both before-school teachers have had Fire Monkey since Kindergarten, so I'm excited to make quilts for them this year.  Ms. L's favorite color is red.  The medallion quilt on my living room wall has a round of Hattie's Choice blocks, cut with my Accuquilt, and I've been wanting to do a quilt with just that block.  So that's what I picked for Ms. L.


The products featured in this post were given to me by Island Batik, Accuquilt, Schmetz, and Aurifil.  

All of these fabrics are from Island Batik's Foundations line, so they are all available all the time.  The red, black, and orange fabrics are all Blenders, and the yellow is a Basic called Amber.   I used just two color variations of the block and alternated them. Hattie's Choice is an 8" finished block, and I decided on a 7 x 7 layout.  I wanted to emphasis the red a little more, so I added a 3" border, making this finish at 62" square.

the two colorways I used

Once I had the top completed, I layered it with Hobbs 80/20 batting, my go-to batting for most quilts.  I used Schemtz needles for all piecing and quilting, as they are the only needles I will use.  I quilted diagonal lines through the kite sections of the blocks using Aurifil 2692 Black and 1104 Neon Orange.


Hattie's Choice is probably my favorite of the BOB dies that I have.  BOB stand for Block on Board,  meaning you can cut everything for the block in one pass of the cutter.  It's a really striking block and can really change looks depending on how you choose to color each part of the block.  I used it in my ambassador challenge in March 2020 and then made that same pattern again last year for one of the teacher quilts.


That's two down, two to go!  Thanks to Island Batik for the open theme and the motivation to get these done!

Monday, March 13, 2023

Flamingo Fun

It's hard to believe that this year's Stay at Home Round Robin is at an end.  I had such a good time with this quilt!  I decided to call it Flamingo Fun, because those flamingos are my favorite part.  


After the final round, it looked like this.  I had a multi-colored Island Batik fabric that went well with the color scheme of Flamingo Fun and I considered adding a sizeable border to the top.  Ultimately, I decided I didn't want it any bigger, and finished the outsides with the same Island Batik solid Cobalt that I used for sashing.  I also used the Cobalt for the binding.  I quilted it with a simple cross-hatch design.


I did have quite a bit of the multi-colored fabric, which was leftover from my Rose Arbor quilt last year, so I used it for the back instead.  It wasn't quite large enough on it's own, so I added a stripe of solid Turquoise.  Sadly, I forgot to take a picture of the back while it was still light out, so you're stuck with this indoor shot of just the multi-colored section.

Did you enjoy this year's Stay at Home Round Robin? If you are sewing along, be sure to link up with hostess supreme Gail to get a final entry into our prize drawing.  And don't forget to check out the final quilts of all the co-hosts!


Monday, March 6, 2023

Blue Skies

March's Island Batik Ambassador is Ambassador's Choice, named "It's All Up To You."  We get free reign to make whatever we want with whichever Island Batik fabrics we want. I decided to take this as motivation to get at least some of this year's teacher quilts done with a few months to spare.  First up is for Mr. B, who says his favorite color is sky blue.

The products featured in this post were given to me by Island Batik, Accuquilt, Schmetz, and Aurifil.  

To give you some backstory, every year I make quilts for Fire Monkey's teachers.  As soon as a new school year starts, Fire Monkey is tasked with finding out his teacher's favorite colors.  This year, I'm making four quilts: his two classroom teachers (dual language school, so one English and one Spanish teacher) and the two before-school teachers, both who have been there since he was in Kindergarten.  For Mr. B's quilt, I went through all my blue Island Batik scraps and pulled everything on the lighter end of the spectrum. There are fabrics from multiple previous collections in this, and I paired the blue scraps with solid white.  This was cut 100% with my Accuquilt.  I used the 4" HST die from my 8" cube. 


I made a very similar quilt in July 2020 for the Island Batik/Accuquilt Christmas in July challenge.  I used the same layout.  The July 2020 version was made with 3" finished HSTs, instead of the 4" HST of this version, but that's really the only difference.  I named that one Sunny Skies, so in keeping with the theme, I'm calling this one Blue Skies. 

Sunny Skies, from July 2020

Blue Skies, March 2023

This has been my leader and ender project for a while, and I'm so glad to see it come together!  I used Hobbs bleached 80/20 batting, perfect for quilts with a white background.   I used Schemtz needles for all piecing and quilting, as they are the only needles I will use.  I chose to quilt in kind of a trip around the world formation, and I did lines on each end that echoed around the square.  I used Aurifil 2770Very Light Delft in the blue sections and 2000 Light Sand in the white sections.

So that's one down, three to go!  I don't think I get can all four done this month, but I am hoping to finish at least two others while the challenges are "all up to me!"

Sunday, March 5, 2023

Bits & Pieces fabric prize winner

Now that Island Batik's Puff Quilt blog hop is over and we have moved into March, it is time for me to draw the winner of my bonus giveaway.  I have four of the fabrics from the Bits and Piece collection, designed by Kathy Engle for Sherry Shish of Powered by Quilting.  There's at least 12" of each, so more than a third of a yard each of four fabrics. Darlene B. is the lucky winner!  I have already emailed asking for her address.  If I don't hear back within a week, I will redraw.

Didn't win and wish you could have some Bits and Pieces of your own?  The following shops have Bits and Pieces in stock now!

Creekside Quilts -- ORHancocks of Paducah -- KYSwifty Stitches -- CACastle Sewing Centre -- BC, CanadaJellyRollFabric.Net -- OnlineMulqueen Sewing & Fabric Centers -- AZ