Child’s Play • Frivols 5

I am continuing with my determined goal to make all my Frivols tins this year.

Because this one was quite small, finishing up at 29″ by 32″ (different than what was measured on the tin), I finished it early, so I get to put an X on the circle of Frivols.

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Child’s Play • Quilt #202 • Frivols Quilt #5

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As mentioned in the last post, the fabric is by French General, and while it looked really dark in the tin, with the black and white four-patches added, it is fairly lively.  It reminded me of an extended game of checkers, and since the quilt is small, like a doll’s quilt, I titled it Child’s Play.

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I quilted it with a stylized flower.

ChildsPlay_Frivols5_4Every doll’s quilt needs some dolls, and I just happened to have my mother’s play tea set from when she was a little girl.  She’s celebrating her ninth decade this month, and because she’s turning ninety, she’s always saying things to me like “You’re not old.”

She’s right.  I’m not yet up to her age, but I am one lucky girl to still have a mom here to talk to when I need a cheering up.

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Because I’ve been thinking about my mother today, the chair above is an antique from “the farmhouse,” a place where my grandmother (my mother’s mother) moved when she married grandpa, a widower with a passel of children, and adopted — and adapted herself to — a life as a farm wife.  And then she had three more children, my mother being one of them.

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Mom, at age 12, holding her birthday cake

A photo of my mother when she was in college. My daughter, who is named for my mother, is with her on the left.  And below is a photo of my mother’s Magnum Opus, a quilt with cross-stitched designs, all hand done while we lived in Peru for two years.

Mom and her quilt

Since it is also Mother’s Day here in the United States, I hope you treasured some memories of your mother, and if she is still here — I hope you called her or visited her.

It wasn’t until I grew up that I realized that my mother (and father) gave me the greatest gift of all: a young life where I could pretend, and get dirty and dress up and have imaginary tea parties and fight with my younger brothers, and go to church, and roam the neighborhood, time to read books, and to hope to be like my older sisters.  While soon enough I would discover that there were real sticks and stones out there, she gave me a life sheltered from the world’s harsh realities.

She gave me Child’s Play, every day.

Happy Birthday, Mom, and Happy Mother’s Day!

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Quilting as Part of Our Life Story

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Happy Almost May with Frivol #5!

I’m beginning this post by talking about my ongoing goal to make up all the Mode Frivols tins.  I had signed up when they first came out (as I am a total fangirl for Carrie Nelson) and every month one would arrive, and I’d stack them up neatly.

As I mentioned before, it’s been a good experience to try something new, to work with fabrics that weren’t generally found on my shelves, and Frivol Tin #5 is just that sort, as its filled with French General.  I’ve used French General before, but it was lighter and airier, when I made a quilt for my sister:

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After receiving the quilt, she repainted her room to match.  Now if that’s not undying love from a sister, I don’t know what is.

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But this tin is a bit darker, filled with lusciously colored deep reds, for the tin was originally placed in the shops in December, a month when we typically sew with those kinds of colors.

First up, this note from Moda:

You can find more about this tin on their blog (including how they turned it into a tin for hand sewing supplies), but for me, I’m dying to open it:

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The fabrics in this tin are from French General, which makes me happy, as I love their fabrics.  And their store.

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It will be a table topper, or even a doll quilt as it’s even tinier that what is printed on the tin (see note, above).  However, that means it will sew up quickly.

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As I mentioned in last month’s overview, there is always a treat in a tin, and this time it is a beautiful woven ribbon in red and white.Frivols 5_3

Continuing on, I also received news in my Yahoo mailbox about new ownership of that enterprise, including Flickr.  So went over to Flickr to see what I would lose if I just ignored that whole thing forever.  The newest activity in any Flickr group was over a year ago.  Most activity was much older than that, which told me that a lot of other quilty peeps have abandoned that site.

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My masthead, but I think that “Joined 2009” thing is when I opened a yahoo email account.

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Here’s my first set of photos on the site: March 2012, with my EPP quilt Kaleidoscope.

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And my last set, in uploading photos for the Mid-Century Modern Bee, which ended that year.

I used to belong to seven groups, most of them Bees, had several Galleries.  I got rid of the Galleries, and unjoined all groups that weren’t a bee I had participated in.

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I was hunting for this gem (4 blocks, shown together–this one is not mine): a wild and crazy star block.  The links to the original pattern are all gone now–funny how quickly that happened, but here’s my PDF for it, if you want to download one for yourself.  I tried to track down the original owner and have not been successful; I would hate for this pattern (which was a free download) would get lost to the quiltiverse forever, hence my posting it here for your download: Starry Sky by Kylie Kelsheimer

UPDATE: Dot wrote me a note with the following info:  

“The Starry Sky pattern is still out there on Kylie’s Dropbox account. I did some searching around with Google and the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine and found an archived copy of Kylie’s website, with a link to her Dropbox page. To get the pattern, you need to have (or create) your own free Dropbox account, and log in to your account. Then you can paste this link into your browser, and download the file!

Here’s the Wayback Machine link to her old website:

https://web.archive.org/web/20170507123558/http://aperseveringmom.com/starry-sky-block-get-the-pattern-here/

Thank you, Dot!

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This one was mine.

So I guess I’m saying that it feels weird to have the history of the quilt world on the internet go missing after such a short time, and it feels equally weird to be erasing some of my own history as well.

It reminds me of some of the things I read in The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter (really, it’s a great little book by Margareta Magnusson): “If someone has lived in a home for many years where children, grown-ups, relatives, and guests have stayed and felt welcome, that same someone is often so busy that they never think of reducing the number of things in the household. And so the number of possessions grows and collects quickly over the years. Suddenly the situation is out of control and the weight of all those things can begin to seem tiring.”

My home and my digital media sites and my blog and Flickr are all like guests that have stayed and felt welcome, I guess.  Unlike the woman in the Swedish Death Cleaning book, not only will we have garages and drawers and closets full that we’ll need to deal with, we’ll also have digital universes that need clearing out, too.  That thought ought to cheer you up, right?

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Which leads me, finally, to this a wonderful video about Ken Burns, the historian and documentarian, who sent a lot of his quilts to be exhibited in Nebraska at the International Quilt Study Center and Museum.  If you want to see them, they will only be on exhibit for a couple of more weeks, but the museum does have a good gallery of the quilts online, from which I excerpt these:

Ken Burns Flag w Crosses.pngMy favorite is the American Flag, with all the crosses surrounding it.  So many terrific quilts, and thankfully, someone, some where, did not clean them out and throw them away.  Someone did not think they were household junk to part with.  Thank you, Mr. Burns, for sharing your wonderful collection and thoughts:

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“Ann Lee, who founded the Shakers, said ‘Do all your work as if you had a thousand years to live, and as you would if you knew you would die tomorrow.’  The things we leave behind — our children, our land, the environment, but also these made things, the art — will commend us to posterity.”  ~Ken Burns

Life’s Dilemma–Frivol 4 is Finished

Thank you to all who entered the giveaway for Simone’s stack of fabrics.  The info about that is at the end of this post.

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I finished up the quilt from Frivol Tin #4, and named it Life’s Dilemma.  It’s quilt #201, which means I started a new listing of quilts, above “300 Quilts.”  When I get that list filled up, I guess that means I retire? Go to the Caribbean or something, and lay on the beach?  (But can I sneak my sewing machine into the hut on that elusive beach?)

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Maybe I named it that because I forgot to put on the final 3″ plain white border, and only realized this after I finished the quilting (so now it only measures 45″ square).  Maybe I named it this because two people stopped me in the hallway at church to talk about their divorces (one just starting, one wrapping up), and the design of this quilt made me think of that type of a maze.  But maybe I just was thinking about how simple, yet complicated life’s choice can be… that way leads on to way, and this quilt reminded me of pathways, both obvious and hidden.

I decided to quilt this using my new circles rulers.

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I placed it in the middle and put my quilting needle INSIDE the circle, started it and kept going.  When I finished the circle, I pivoted it it somewhere else, working my way to the outer edges, trying for coverage, but also trying really hard not to make it feel like work.  I wanted to just play with this.

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Life’s Dilemma, quilt #301

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So now I have another X on my circle of tins: four down and eight to go.  Progress.  Which is the name of the game at my house.

 

 

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Congratulations, Ellie!  Ellie is a faithful reader of this blog, and I’ve appreciated all her nice notes, so it was great to see the Random Number Thingie pick her.  When I was running this at first, I was perplexed, because I show more comments than 80, but when I went back through to read all these interesting and wonderful comments about placemats, not all were “comments” for the giveaway.  Eighty unique and individual comments were left.

If you didn’t win, you can buy the stack of fat quarters directly.

The On Your Mark Create! blog hop is still going on.  You can enter to win every day at the following places:

Tuesday, April 17: Simone @simone.g.b  ; Simone Bradford
Wednesday, April 18: Elizabeth (me!)
Thursday, April 19: Stephanie @spontaneousthreadsSpontaneous Threads
Friday, April 20: Linda @quiltlady63
Saturday, April 21: Joan@alaskanquilter
Sunday, April 22: Carol @carolanngillen
Monday, April 23: Sarah @nohatsquilts
Tuesday, April 24: Afton @quiltingmodQuilting Mod
Wednesday, April 25: Alison @quiltstudio62
Thursday, April 26@pbstudiofabricsInspired by Fabric

Frivols 3 Finished, and Frivols 4, and (oh, boy!): Mad for Solids 2018 Final Four

 

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Thank you to all who are participating in the Mad for Solids 2018 game, and thank you very much for your votes.  I’m happy to announce that I’ve made it into the Final Four of this quilty March Madness.  The penultimate vote in this process is today at 6 p.m. CDT, and if you wish to vote for my bundle, or vote for the bundle of your choice, please head here to cast your votes:

•  Paintbrush Studios Blog
•  Paintbrush Studios on Instagram
•  Paintbrush Studios on Facebook

The Championship Game (love these terms) will begin Sunday night 6 p.m. CDT, and according to the Paintbrush Studio website:

We’re now down to just four color palettes, and the voting won’t get any easier! We’ve also raised the stakes! Everyone who votes in the Championship Game (starts Sunday at 6 pm CDT) will have a chance to win a fat quarter bundle of the winning palette. But even if you don’t win, you can still play with these colorful combinations!

After we announce the Champion on Monday, we’ll be selling fat quarter bundles of the four Painter’s Palette Solids color palettes that made it to the Final Four. Any of these Final Four palettes can be yours! Watch for more details Monday. 

I was happy to see that, as I really love a lot of the bundles that quilters have put together.  I promised another border, and it will come soon, but the fabric (I ordered more from Pineapple Fabrics) is on its way.

As fun as all this is, it’s time to go back to our regularly scheduled show, now in progress.

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And that regular show I’m working on is sewing my way through my series of Frivols tins.  I finished up what I started about a month ago, when sewing on Frivols #3, with fabrics from Betsy Chutchian’s line titled “Eliza’s Indigo.”

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What I did in between the last filled-up tin photo and the above quilt picture.

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I ditch-stiched in-between the squares, then quilted circles around the inner squares.  Really imaginative, but hey–I always remember that quote I printed at the top of all my syllabi when I taught college English to incoming freshman: The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good.  And in this case,  The Done.

The back is a tea towel from Queen Elizabeth’s Jubilee that my son brought back to me from his trip to London.  The title is Betsy’s Quilt, borrowing not only from the name of the designer, but also from a childhood nickname of mine, and since I’m also named Elizabeth, I thought it was fitting.  I came in from photographing it and set in on the kitchen table, which is next to our family room.  Sometimes small quilts can hang around like this, adding a nice touch to the same old same old.

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This is the third Frivols I’ve finished, so that means I’m one-fourth of the way through my  year-long quest to Make the Frivols. So I don’t completely bore you with my attempt to clear out those tins of their fabrics and finish them up, I’m combining Finish #3 with Start #4.

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Tin #4 is a collection by Brenda Riddle, titled Windermere, and there on the end you see the definition of Frivol: a quilt packed into a fanciful limited edition tin.  Although you can still buy them on Amazon.  Maybe I should stop sewing these up and just re-sell them?  I suppose I could, but I follow Mary Poppins advice: “A job once begun is a job half done.”  I’m pressing forward.

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Yeah, it only took me three tins to realize that I should look at the bottom of the tin for relevant info, such as additional fabrics and how big the quilt will be.  I’m using Paintbrush Studio Solids in white from Pineapple Fabrics for my background.  I think I should buy bought a bolt of this stuff.  It’s really so great to sew with.

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The tins always have these things:

  1. roll of 7″ squares
  2. make-it card, with instructions
  3. cardboard “frame” for the stuff inside
  4. an extra…and this tin’s extra was two skeins of embroidery floss that accent the quilt’s colors.  Maybe I should take the hint and plan on some hand-stitching?  That is to be determined, as this quilt is bigger than the others, measuring about 50″ square when finished.

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All pieces cut.  Now to start sewing.  Thank you all!

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Frivols 2


We’re back for another episode of Make Those Frivols! 2018

Today I’m working on Frivols Tin #2, with a line of fabrics from Moda’s Minick and Simpson.

Of course the cute little giveaway in this tin, a personalized label, was caught in a blurry photo, so the above photo came from  Moda’s blog.  The fabrics are traditional, but with a grouping of 7″ squares, they’ve crafted an interesting little quilt, which finishes at approximately 26″ square.

I pressed all the fabrics flat, as they had a nice little curve in them from being stored in the tin for a while.  I checked and re-checked but there were no Errata posts on this tin, so I just started cutting them out.

But here is your caution: The strips, above, are the dark borders and the light borders.  THE DARK BORDER IS SUPPOSED TO BE WIDER.  Okay, there’s my oops.  I liked the look of the wider border, so after piecing as instructed (see below), I sewed another coordinating strip onto the blue to bring it wider.  I didn’t have any of this fabric, but did have some navy “primitive” fabric, and it worked okay.

I did not pencil in all the center lines when sewing the half-square triangles, like they asked.  I put a strip of masking tape extending out from the needle stitching line, and used that to line up for sewing.  My needle position is set 1/4″ to the right, so I have to pay attention to where I line up my point so I stitch on either side of that imaginary center line.

The cream-coloredborder strips are stitched end to end, but the blue is stitched with a diagonal seam.  After I sewed, I trimmed.

I pressed all the half-square triangles to the dark, but didn’t have time to start trueing them up. Getting this far gives me a good start on my February goal.

You can see the extra strip I stitched on the blue border here (the darker fabric on the left).  I didn’t worry about the width of the border, figuring I would trim it when I got back to the sewing.  I tell you all this as a cautionary note: pay attention to, circle, highlight, make notes to make sure you follow the cutting directions.  However, since this is just a fun little quilt in a fun little tin, you can adopt a happy attitude, even in the face of cutting mistakes.  Just sew another strip on and go, because I’ve paid off all the Quilt Police so no one will ever find out if yours is different than the directions.

I have a tailor-made little tin to store it in while I’m away from this task — another benefit of those Frivols tins.  See you at the end of the month, when I report in again on my little quilt.

Frivols 1 Is Finished!

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Caitlin’s Baby Quilt • Quilt #192
40″ (approx) square

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I finished the first Frivol and I finished it early — before the end of January, so I was pretty happy with THAT deadline.  As I was making it, I was thinking about my friend Caitlin, who is having a girl after two boys.  I decided she just needed this feminine quilt that isn’t so fussy, that it couldn’t be thrown down on the ground when the family has a picnic.

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It’s my first finish in this year; 2017 saw sixteen finishes, but a lot of them were smaller quilts, so it’s nice to lead off with a good-sized quilt.

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I used Carolyn Friedlander’s white-on-white cross-hatch design (from her Architextures line) for the sashing and accent, and then used another white-on-white heart print for the borders.

A lot of contemporary quilters are notorious for not owning up to the traditional name of the block, and this group was no exception.  The block has several names, the most common being “Chimney Sweep,” and it was first published in 1929 by Ruth Finley (I get all my info from Barbara Brackman’s Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns).  It’s also known as “Christian Cross” (from a book published by the Shelburne Museum that listed all their quilts).

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This backing is from a fabric from about a decade ago.

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I quilted it in an overall lazy large meander, and bound it with a fabric that was a nice companion to the Bonnie and Camille line, interspersed with bits of the fabric from the leftover squares, as I don’t plan to make an extra block for a sampler quilt (one feature of the Frivols tins).

My review: if you are a Bonnie and Camille fan, this box is for you.  I haven’t ever sewn with their line, and part of why I’m doing this is to learn about other styles of fabrics.  I found the repetitive blocks easy, once I learned about the misprint measurement.  Resolved: I’m going to look up any errata (errors) first, before I start cutting.  But overall, it didn’t hold my attention, nor was I fascinated with the fabrics or the block. I guess I’ve spent too much designing my own quilts as well as working in highly saturated colors and splashy patterns.  But, like I said, good to have a change.

It will be perfect for Catlin’s little baby girl. On to Frivols #2 in February.

January 2018 • No. 1 – Hello Darling by Bonnie & Camille  DONE!
February 2018 • No. 2 – Polka Dots & Paisleys by Minick & Simpson
March 2018 • No. 3 – Eliza’s Indigo by Betsy Chutchian
April 2018 • No. 4 – Windermere by Brenda Riddle
May 2018 • No. 5 – Petite Prints Deux by French General
June 2018 • No. 6 – Strawberry Fields Revisited by Fig Tree
July 2018 • No. 7 – Songbird Gatherings by Primitive Gatherings
August 2018 • No. 8 – Bread ‘n Butter by American Jane
September 2018 • No. 9 – Little Miss Sunshine by Lella Boutique
October 2018 • No. 10 – The Cookie Exchange by Sweetwater
November 2018 • No. 11 – Sew & Sew by Chloe’s Closet
December 2018 • No. 12 – Blue Barn by Laundry Basket Quilts