Revisiting the Red and White Pinwheel

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Interestingly, I get a lot of mail about this quilt.  It must be on a boatload of Pinterest boards, but the pattern for this quilt has gone missing.  It was originally published in a national magazine, but in searching for it (my old link to the pattern is kaput), it seems to have disappeared.  The original was in a lot of different colors, but my friend Rhonda chose to make it in red and white for a class she was teaching seven years ago. I liked hers so well, I made one of my own.  The original pattern was an 8″ block, but I made the pattern to finish at 7 1/2″ (mostly so I could get it all on one page).

Since it’s not my pattern, and it’s disappeared and I get a lot of mail about it, I decided to draw it up in my QuiltPro software, rework it in Affinity Publisher software, and have it here for you for download:

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It’s not really a pattern, but more a loose set of instructions.  It’s meant to be a scrappy quilt, but I did include a yardage chart if you are using three reds, and a white.

You can read more about it here and here.

So you don’t go away empty-handed, if you’re not interested in a two-color quilt, here’s a chart that came to me in a Guild newsletter.  It shows how much yardage is in a particular precut, and what that costs per yard.

Precut Yardage Chart

Happy Quilting!

Christmas Criss-Cross Finished

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Christmas Criss-Cross, June 2019
Quilt #219 • 60″ wide by 66″ tall

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I started this for the 20th anniversary of a small quilters group I’d participated in, as we were given mini-charm packs of this print.  Of course, that only got my toes wet, as I soon ordered a Layer Cake.  Then yardage.  Then backing.

My quilter, Cathy Kreter, finished this up quickly and I put the binding on this past month (so, while I finished 12″ of the binding in June, technically it was finished in May, when I sewed the label on).

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It will be hanging out in my closet, waiting for the holiday season to arrive, a nice lap-sized quilt to use when watching all those holiday seasonal specials.  It doesn’t require a Quilt Ph.D to make this.  I walk you through the steps on an earlier post.  There are many variations of the block in my reference book, but I can’t give you a name for the block outright, as there are two basic blocks in this, both four-patch variations: one is cut on the diagonal and one on the straight.

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Get to Work Book 2019

In other news, my Get to Work Planner arrived and this time I ordered the elastic band to put on my old one, as I tape in all sort of things and the book has kind of expanded.

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Recently I had an interesting letter in my emailbox.  A young professor asked if he could use the image of this quilt in a project he was working on for his English class.  Since I’d taken it in to my class when I taught the short story Everyday Use, I quickly acquiesced.ESE Utlity Quilt_2

Yep, it’s pretty wonky.  It was designed that way in a class I took with Roberta Horton in Houston, eons ago.  I treasure the quilt for that reason alone.  It’s #37 on my Lifelong Quilts lists.ESE Utlity Quilt_3

I think at one point I wanted to put an epigram on every quilt label, but in a quick survey, this is the only one.

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Lastly, such happy news arrived with the announcement of Affinity Publisher‘s public release on June 19th.  I’ve been a Beta tester in my own weasley and squirrely fashion for the last several months, sending in comments and notes on using the software.  While not a difficult software, there is a learning curve which is when I searched their tutorials and forums for help.  I use this to write my patterns, and I’m currently working backwards through the MSWord versions, and converting them one by one to a more professional look.

The introductory discount is 20% off the price, and there are NO SUBSCRIPTIONS to deal with (you know which company I’m referring to).  So mark your calendars, if you’ve needed software that can help publish documents at a higher level than a word processing program.

Be My Valentine • 2017

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Mini Love Quilt, 2012

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Be My Valentine, 2012

Spelling Bee Words, 2015

Spelling Bee Words, 2015

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peacebailey-valentine1 A creation from Way Back: a florid appliqué heart Valentine designed by Elinor Peace Bailey.peacebailey-valentine2

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Hearts in the Pines, 2007

(Pattern for heart blocks on this post.)valentine-heart_1

Valentine Hearts, with a wee pocket with a wee Valentine note tucked in.  The hearts themselves are about 4″ tall, with attached ribbons and keys.valentine-heart_2

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Twined Threads, 1997 (first quilt I ever quilted by machine)

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May’s Blocks (and some of June)

Random Number 6

Because my husband is busy this afternoon recovering from our trip (see below), I used an online generator to pick a winner today for the felt, and it’s Elizabeth (what a great name, eh?) who goes by catskillquilter.  Congratulations, Elizabeth!  I’ll be in touch to get that sent out to you.  I have two more giveaways lined up in the next couple of weeks, one courtesy of Uppercase Magazine, and the other from the Steam A Seam people (that one’s on June 13th–in conjunction with our continuing Hallowe’en 1904 QAL).  I’ll have some great news as well about that fabulous pattern.

MCM May 2016_Carla

Here we go, first with quilt blocks from our Mid-Century Modern Bee: Carla of Grace and Favor asked for a modern churn dash block, saying she likes mustard and plum.  Above is my block, but I was tempted by this, from @myquiltdiet:
Sawtooth Churndash

I thought it would be fun to try, but Carla said “Too much work!” I could hear the laugh in her voice, so I smiled and went with tweaking the center bars to give it a bit of a twist.  I hope she likes it.

Spelling Bee May

In our Spelling Bee Quilt Bee, Susan of PatchworknPlay asked for words to make up her saying, which she’ll reveal on her blog.   I first took three words with “w’s” but then Simone had none, so I gave two back, leaving me with the above.

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Since NOT staying at home seems to be the thing I do the best lately, we headed out Friday for a mini-reunion with my husband’s family in Zion National Park, about 7 hours away.  You can tell who has been coming there for ages (this makes about trip #20 for me) as we say “heading to Zion’s” as if there’s a possessive element there.  (However, I do feel like it’s “my” park.)  To try and catch up with my patchwork, I took some Chuck Nohara blocks on the road, stitching them in the car and in the park.
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We invested in new air mattresses this year, twin blow-up beds, and those of you who have slept on a queen air mattress with another person while it slowly deflates all night long, know exactly why I replaced our aging air mattress.  It also helps that my favorite camp quilt, Hearts in the Pines, is made for a twin.  The pattern is out of print, but you can find the blocks in this previous post.  My husband’s bed later on got a green nine-patch, but he left it off because it was. . .

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…pretty dang hot this weekend. Snapshot was from the next day, where it turned out to have a high of 103 degrees F (about 40 C.)Zion16_3

My husband and I, my son and his wife and boys always go out to dinner at Zion Pizza and Noodle Company the first night, as we all love their pizzas, and who wants to cook after setting up camp? I love their scallopy crusts.
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We were tasked with getting the S’more supplies.  I cracked up when I saw a whole section just dedicated to this.Zion16_5

We rejoiced to have my husband’s niece (shown here in the Virgin River with the  youngest of her six children) join us.  Several weeks ago she underwent surgery for a brain tumor, and while under anesthesia, had a stroke.  She awoke to a mostly paralyzed left side and has undergone significant physical therapy just to be able to walk with occasional hesitation.  But she’s walking! She’s our own little success story, and she and her husband and family are our very own heroes.Zion16_6 Zion16_7

Throwing rocks in the river was great entertainment for my grandson and the other small cousins. (No, he couldn’t lift that one.)Zion16_9

I left the river early because it was too hot, and went back to camp.  I picked up my Chuck Nohara stitching, sitting quietly in the shade, watching (and chasing away) the squirrels.  All of a sudden I hear a sound directly behind me, and using the reverse camera on my phone, caught this shot.  One of the other little cousins came running over, saying “Bambi’s here! Mom, Bambi’s here!”

Because of the above sitting quietly, I’m all caught up with my Chuck Nohara blocks from April and May:

April 2016 Chuck Nohara May 2016 Chuck NoharaNow to head into June!

What Was Old is New Again

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After a trip to Venice one year, I got the bright idea to re-create the magnificent floor in the cathedral, but with subterfuge.  Some of the sections would bleed into the others, and others into others, and all of a sudden it got very complicated very fast.  Either this is a really good example of Deconstructionist quilt style, or it’s a Venice Cathedral Floor Gone Bad.

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I’d also taken a class from Hollis Chatelain at Road to California, and had come under the spell of her close, narrow quilting.  Now it’s called matchstick quilting, but then, we didn’t give catchy names to rows and rows of thread, narrowly spaced. The back:

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I used to hate it, but I must admit, given the hundreds of quilts that are now using Hollis’ matchstick quilting, the quilt is growing on me.  The reason why I’m revisiting this quilt’s new-again-technique, is to also look at this one, too:

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Every Common Bush Afire, No. 31

A sampler quilt, made when I trekked up several weeks in a row to take classes from Carolyn (of Road to California fame) it hangs every fall in our upstairs hallway, reminding me of fall colors in cooler climates.  I love looking at it, and love the colors.

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But this is why it’s being revisited: the large maple leaf on the back.  I made this in the year 2000, but now you see fancy pieced quilt backs everywhere.  I still am of two minds about pieced backs, as getting it on straight seems to be a challenge, as well as dealing with the many seams.  Obviously pieced backs have evolved and it’s more like pieced strips-on-a-back with bits of extra blocks rolled in.  But it’s fun to realize that at the time, I’d given something new a try.

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The label is underneath three overlapping leaves; the quilt shows this has been in are below on little labels from those shows, which lately I haven’t seen given out.  I should still make my own labels, if only to properly identify the quilt’s provenance. Last blast to the past:

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Nihondaira, No. 53 (2003)

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I’m revisiting this one for the hand-quilting coupled with the machine quilting.  This one is specific, using sashiko thread, a thicker embroidery thread from Japan.  I began this in a class taught by Roberta Horton, a true master of quilting.

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She talked about not fretting if you didn’t have enough of the specialized yakuta fabric, but instead to be creative, finishing the shape with the hand-stitching.  So I did.

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Another pieced back, using a gradated fabric (aren’t you seeing those again?)

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Yeah, I realize I sound like a quilt geezer.  But this might explain why I don’t get all in a froth when I see these techniques *burst* out into our quilt world as the newest! greatest! most amazing! thing.  I had a conversation with Debbie of A Quilter’s Table not too long ago, and we discussed how some of these people–like Hollis, or Roberta Horton, or even Nancy Crow–seem to have faded into the background of our quilty life.  I love the new and the novel as much as anyone, but I also recognize my debt to these amazing women, who were innovating, even before social media’s sticky grasp.  Do we exist if we are not on Instagram?  Or Facebook?  Or run a blog?  Do techniques from a decade or so ago remain hidden, except when those of us who have done them, bring them out into the light of the internet?

You know the answer.

Cross-X Swap, January Update

KristaDecOct Blocks

Krista sent me these too close to Christmas to post (and besides, no one was reading any blogs that week anyway), so here they are on the New Year, now that we’ve all put away our decorations, celebrated, vacuumed and have actually resumed some sense of order in our lives.  Or at least pretend we have.

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We are in the (I can never get this right) the Plus and X Friendship Swap.  Or the X and Plus Swap.  I just call it the Cross-X swap, as noted in the title, and all our blocks — thus far swapped — are on my pinwall, above.  Cool, huh?

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As of this post, she is all caught up, but I’m now 4 blocks behind for January.  I can just hear her saying “Neener, neener, neener!”  I’ll catch up, Krista, I promise.  I notice that usually we try to make the background all the same, but in her blocks sent for January, she’s varied the backgrounds.  I’m trying to decide if I like her new twist, but she’s very creative and a really wonderful swap partner, so I need to be open to new ideas.  We try to blog the last Fridays of each month and hey–it’s only the 10th, and I need to get out several blocks promised for a cooperative group quilt, two bee blocks, and I’m working really hard on my Amish With A Twist-2 quilt, too.

Quilt Frolic_front

Quilt Frolic has a new home. During Christmastime, all our children and grandchildren came home, and my youngest, Peter, and his wife, Megan, stayed with us the entire week while waves of family moved in and out of the two other available rooms.

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I had this quilt on their bed, and one morning Megan was relating a conversation she had with Peter about how much she like this quilt.  “I mean, I really like it,” she said.  And she asked my son if she thought she could, like, borrow it, or even have it.

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Megan, that is music to a quilter’s ears!  I gave it to her on the spot.  I was thrilled that she liked it well enough to want it, and I think she was thrilled to take it home.  Megan really liked the fabrics in it–a combo of Amy Butler and some Anna Maria Horner–a kind of fabric that suits Megan well.  She did get it into her teensy little carryon for the trip across the United States, to their home on the East Coast.

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I am glad that this quilt has gone to someone who loves it!