Friday, March 25, 2022

New Tab for Charity Quilt Patterns

The response to my charity quilt pattern posts over the last couple of months has been amazing and very gratifying. To be able to find them again in the future, I've added a tab below my header labeled Free Charity Quilt Patterns. 

The patterns are available for any charitable purpose. They were designed to be included in kits so total yardage isn't given on the PDF, but I've added the yardage requirements and number of strips needed per kit to the the new page. 

Check out the new tab. If you're inspired to make a charity quilt and want any of the PDF patterns, leave a comment and be sure to include your email address within the text of the comment. 

Link ups: I'm celebrating a different kind of Friday Finish today, the new page, at TGIFF, Wendy's Quilts and More, and Alycia Quilts

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

PCQ Community Service Sew Day

Recently PCQ held an all day sew day to work on charity quilts for a local family services agency. The Community Service committee had prepped kits ahead of time using the Quilt for Kids pattern I had created for this purpose. We had a great turnout - 18 people! The room was so packed we couldn't have shoe-horned another person in. 

We had prepped about two dozen kits. Some people took an extra kit home after working on their first kit that day. We ended up making at least four more kits because we had enough cut parts for them, and made them available for adoption at the general guild meeting last week. All were taken. 

The agency serves victims of sexual violence so our focus was on quilts for teenage girls. My sample: 

Everyone got all their blocks made and some people got some of their rows together. I heard no complaints about the pattern or the kits, although a couple needed extra strips, which we were able to provide. Based on the ease, speed, and progress, I would consider this a successful charity sew day. 

Some of the kits had black in them, not all. The tops that were this far along when we took the photo happened to have black in them. George's kit had pink flamingoes, tropical florals, and greenery, and he was planning his layout so all the flamingoes would be going in the same direction. I wish I had a photo, but maybe I'll get one when his quilt is finished. 

By the following Wednesday at social sewing, several people had completed their tops and were making backs and cutting batting in preparation for quilting them on the long arm. Here's Julie's top; you can't see it in the photo but the black patches have multi-colored confetti printed on them, very festive. This quilt could go to one of the boys the agency occasionally has as a client. 

It was a fun and successful sew day. Very gratifying for me, not only because of the impact of making so many quilts for the family services agency we support but also because my pattern and my efforts were successful and well received. 

Thursday, March 17, 2022

A Pleasant Surprise, a Finish

I went on the PebbleCreek Quilters website yesterday to register for a time slot to use the long arm, and found a pleasant surprise. This photo was featured on the website: 

Photographed by a member of PCQ and posted on the club's website

I'm happy to see this top I pieced over a year ago completely finished and on its way to comfort someone. 

This was the first top I finished after moving to Arizona. My sewing room wasn't fully set up yet, so I didn't have easy access to my stash. The scraps and parts drawers were available, but yardage was still in moving boxes, so this was made mostly of leftovers from the parts drawer. Story here and here.  

 I don't know who quilted it or who bound and finished it, but I'm happy with the panto they chose. So thank you to the members of the club who finished this top and whoever photographed it. I'm happy to complete the record of it and know that it's done and off to its new home.

Link ups: My Quilt Infatuation, Alycia Quilts, TGIFF

Sunday, March 13, 2022

Julie's Box

Do you know Quilt Diva Julie? I've been following her for years. She got me hooked on working with strips a few years ago. She has the most amazing "resources" (aka stash) and she designs incredible quilts. 

To my immense surprise and delight, I found a large box from Julie on my doorstep. OMG!

And then when I opened it I was blown away.  So generous of Julie to send these to my guild for our charity efforts.  It's a wonderful collection of black and white fabrics! 

Julie knew that these black and white prints would be especially useful to us. So inspiring! Already the ideas are churning in my head, for quilt designs we can kit up for our members to make. So many possibilities! 

Thank you , Julie, for your thoughtful generosity and these wonderful fabrics. 

Friday, March 11, 2022

Blue Strip Flimsy from Carla's Box

 I've been writing about this one for awhile.... It was inspired by Carla's leftovers. She passed me a box of donated fabrics, and this is one of the quilts coming from that magical box. 

Now the top is finally finished and the backing is pieced. The top finished at about 57" wide by 72" long, a good size for an adult throw. 

 It was so windy when I was trying to take photos that I had to weight down the bottom of the flimsy so it wouldn't flap around so much. The colors look pretty true in this photo. 

The border fabric is something I've had in my stash for awhile; it might have come from another quilter's destashing or a fabric swap because I don't recall purchasing it. For unity, I used a bit of it within the strips knowing I'd use it for the borders. I eked out every last inch of it. 

Some indoor shots, without the wind:

The next step is to book time on PCQ's long arm and find an experienced helper so I can get it quilted. 

Link ups: Alycia Quilts, TGIFF

Monday, March 7, 2022

New Teaching Sample

 The members of the PCQ charity committee had an opportunity recently to tour the local family services agency we support. We learned a lot about what they do, who their clients are, and what their needs are regarding quilts. The agency's focus is on helping victims of sexual violence and trafficking, combining law enforcement, medical, and counseling/therapy services under one roof to reduce the trauma. Their clients are predominantly teenage girls, some younger girls, and the occasional boy. Each client is given a comfort item upon arrival at the agency.

We learned that they receive donations from several organizations, of toys and comfort items such as stuffed animals and crocheted blankets as well as quilts. Unfortunately they have a closet full of items they can't use because the items are too small or not suitable, such as toddler toys, baby blankets, baby-sized quilts, and quilts with construction trucks, etc. themes. 

Their preference is for quilts large enough for teenage girls, and they need a mix of soothing palettes and palettes that include black, depending on the age and taste of the recipient, who gets to choose. 

The original sample I made for my PCQ Quilt for Kids pattern (post here, scroll down) is too small and too babyish. So, after the tour, I raided my stash, found some Kaffe leftovers and coordinating prints, and made a new sample. 

The new sample is 45 x 60", using 48 blocks. It could be enlarged further with borders. 

I cut everything (using a die cutter for the strips) in an hour. I made the Kaffe print blocks in another hour, and the black and white blocks in a third hour. This project was on and off the design wall so quickly that I didn't get a design wall photo for today. I got the top assembled at social sewing on Wednesday morning. That's me holding it and it's obviously big enough for someone my size.

Outdoor photos are always better than indoor ones....

The person who gave us the tour told a story about three girls who had been brought in together. She offered them three quilts to "fight over," her words. Two of the girls immediately gravitated to the quilts that had black in them. The third girl was left with pastel florals and she was "visibly disappointed" so they gave her a different quilt, more to her liking. This story inspired my fabric choices. I didn't have enough of either of the black and white prints so I used both. 

It's heartbreaking to know there's a need for such an organization and the services it provides. PCQ can continue to support them, but we need to make quilts that are more suitable for their needs. 

We're having a Community Service sew day coming up, so members of the charity committee have been cutting and packaging up quilt kits for it. All the kits will be for 45 x 60" quilts, and the sewists can add borders later if they want to make theirs larger. The fabrics are all from the club's stash, but we avoided all the baby and juvenile prints and instead chose colorful batiks, perky prints, and girly pinks, purples, aquas and greens. We also mixed in a few cheerful-looking prints that have black in them. To my knowledge there are at least 17 kits in work; that's about how many people with sewing machines can fit comfortably in the Fiber Arts room. 

My top will be the teaching sample for the sew day, and each kit will have a print-out of the pattern included in it. Not everyone will finish their top in the six-hour work day, but that's fine, they'll take them home to finish. 

The tops can then be paired with backings and members of PCQ can quilt them on the club's long arm. My sample top will get quilted and finished, too. Hopefully soon we'll have a batch of suitable quilts to take to the agency. 

Link ups: Small Quilts and Doll QuiltsLove Laugh Quilt

Friday, March 4, 2022

February Stash Report and Goals Update

February was a crazy busy month and I just realized I haven't posted my monthly recap. I accomplished a lot, but I really pushed to do so and wore myself out. 

I pieced teaching samples for a couple more of my charity patterns, using some of my own fabric and some of PCQ's fabric. I went shopping with friends to a local quilt shop's sale and of course some fabric had to come home with me. No immediate purpose, just stash enhancement. Even so, my stash report is looking good. 

Basketweave teaching sample top, my fabrics

Spinner teaching sample top, combo of my fabrics and PCQ's fabrics

February Stash Report: 

IN this month: 3 yards (35th Ave. sale)
OUT this month: 9-5/8 yards (Basketweave top, all my fabrics, est. 3-1/4 yards.  Spinner top, my light fabric and a few of the darks, 2 yards. Binding for Cabbage Rose tumblers, 3/4 yard. Binding for Sock Monkey Plus, 3/4 yard. New teaching sample for Charity Quilt for Kids, 2-7/8 yards)

IN YTD: 5-1/2 yards
OUT YTD: 16-1/4 yards
YTD Net Change: 10-3/4 yards out

My goals for February were a bit too ambitious and I couldn't get everything done that I had on my list. Plus I added a project at the end of the month that wasn't on the list. In addition, my work with the charity committee has taken some time, including prep for sew days and writing patterns. 

Sock Monkey Plus donation quilt

Goals Update: 

February Recap: 

1. Finish the third PCQ charity quilt teaching sample top. DONE, Basketweave

2. Make the fourth PCQ charity quilt sample top. DONE, Spinner

3. Bind and label the Sock Monkey Plus donation quilt. DONE

4. Finish the blue floral strip top from Carla's box. DONE. Backing is also pieced and ready to quilt. 

5. If possible, bind the Cabbage Rose Tumblers donation quilt (awaiting quilting by someone in PCQ) DONE

6. Quilt something on the club's long arm. No.

7. Assemble the coral snake blocks into a flimsy and make backing. No, not touched. 

8. Participate in the No Shame Train and make progress on a UFO.  Yes, found the "missing" block for Winding ways so I can move it along. 

Other: Made another charity Quilt for Kids teaching sample in a size and color palette our local family services agency can use. Story and photos in a future post. 

It seems I don't have a photo and haven't blogged about finishing the blue floral strip top. I'll have to take photos and post about it next week. 

March Goals: 

1. Finish prepping kits and lead the project for PCQ Charity Sew Day on Feb. 12.

2. Quilt the blue strip top, bind and finish the quilt. 

3. Finish Winding Ways top for No Shame Train.

4. Assemble the coral snake blocks into a flimsy.

Only four goals on the list for March... I have some non-quilty things going on this month and family will be visiting, so I'm keeping the goals much more manageable this month. 

Winding Ways UFO, goal is to finish the flimsy in March

It seems I'm a little behind in blogging, so I'll catch up with the stories of the blue floral strip project and the new Kid Quilt teaching sample in upcoming posts. I'm hoping March won't be as crazy busy as the last few weeks have been!

Link Up: Finished  - or not! - Friday at Alycia Quilts

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

No Shame Train: Winding Ways

I've mentioned before the sub-group of PebbleCreek Quilters that encourages UFO finishes, called No Shame Train. One of my older UFOs is a Winding Ways project that was a bee project back in about 2017 or so. 

It was planned for a donation baby quilt of 25 blocks with colors placed in such a way that they made circles. I had pieced a few blocks myself, and handed out baggies with one block kit in each to the girls in the bee. After I got the blocks back from the girls, I only had 23 baggies of blocks plus one unpieced block cut out. 

Grrrr, one missing. The fabric was mostly scraps to begin with, so I didn't have any more fabric to cut another block. 24 blocks out of 25 needed and no more fabric meant the project was stuck. 

The girls in No Shame Train suggested a 24 block layout but I didn't think I could make it work given the color placement within the blocks I had. But I pulled them out and put them on the design wall anyway to see what I could do with them. 

Imagine my surprise and delight when I found that one of the baggies had two finished blocks in it! 😀No block missing after all. 

So my No Shame Train goal for March is to piece that last block and assemble the flimsy. The blocks are hand pieced, but I'll machine sew them together. It'll be nice to bust this UFO!

Link up: Quilt Fabrication