Monday, March 29, 2010

Al Lind: American Hero

This Quilt of Valor top was pieced by Al Lind of Quincy, Washington. I have had the priviledge of quilting 13 of Al’s quilt tops over the past 2 years.
Each of his finished quilts are sent, packaged with his 7 page story.  Here is a small excerpt from his story:

"Al Lind: Drafted in 1942, the work hardened farm boy from South Dakota had entered the army strong and fit at 160 pounds. June 18th, 1945 he returned to American soil, a survivor of 23 months and 11 days as a POW--he was 80 pounds of rawboned courage.

He married and returned to a life of farming. When he retired he was always looking for something to do. That’s how he began cutting cotton strips for his neighbor, a quilter. She told him about Quilts of Valor.  When Al found out more about the effort, he put hours in each day cutting fabric for others as well. Within a few weeks, he was taught to make foundation string pieced blocks with a borrowed sewing machine. He now has his own machine and makes 10-12 quilt tops a month.

For him, service to country is a lifelong commitment. His quilts now honor those who followed in his footsteps: the men and women of the United States Armed Forces who each day stand ready to risk lives to protect the freedoms all of us enjoy."

Al Lind celebrated his 92nd birthday January 1, 2010.

These string pieced quilts have hundreds of donated fabrics in them:  all kinds of prints, all kinds of colors, all sizes utilized.

Al takes all those fabrics, cuts them into strips and turns them into a work of art!

The quilting pattern I used is called "Allegiance" by Kristin Hoftyzer.

Thank you Al Lind.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Objects of Desire . . .

This quilt was fun and cheery.  For some reason, I craved a glass of Pink Lemonade after I got it done . . . and I don't even like Lemonade . . . but I really like these shoes!

This quilt is just what I needed this week. The weather here has been cold, windy, cloudy, snowy, rainy and grey.

Welcome Spring!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Turtle Tracks

I had an order for a custom baby quilt: Snail Trail with Turtles. This is the 3rd time I have made this pattern. It is fun and works up fast. Look at the fun "watery, puddle-y" background fabric I found!

Pieced, quilted and bound. 

I used the "puddle" print as a pattern for my background quilting behind the turtles.


I have one personal WIP to finish.  In January, I set a schedule for my daughter's Broken Star quilt to be finished.  I am scheduled to start on it April 1st and have blocked 2 weeks on my quilting schedule to finish it.  After this turtle baby is pieced, quilted and bound, I have 3 lap sized quilts hanging here to quilt.

They will be all done and I can finish her Broken Star!  She has been waiting paitently for 2 years.


Saturday, March 20, 2010

Brown and Teal Floral

It is always exciting to see the next quilt top that clients send to me~

This was a fun and challenging quilt for me.  You can't see it here, but the teal fabric is a flower print.  My client requested a similar flower in the open cream blocks.  I like how it turned out.  Here is the first flower I was finally happy with.  It took some practicing on my white board and some practice stitching on some scrap fabric to figure out how to start in the middle and stitch the whole block without stopping. 
I just took this off the frame and it's ready to bind.

The binding is done.


Friday, March 19, 2010

I went shopping . . .

Isn't this cute?  My niece, April, made this quilt top. 
A couple of weeks ago, I was in her sewing room admiring her fabric stash.  She showed me this quilt top that she had just finished sewing. I loved it. After all, I had loaned her the pattern.

I bought it.  I needed a baby quilt for a baby shower coming up soon, and frankly, was wondering how I was going to piece, quilt and bind a personal quilt with everything else I had to do this month.

She had just finished ironing on this funky little flower appliqué but didn't have it stitched down yet.  I brought it home and stitched the appliqué in lime green thread.
When I got it quilted, realized I didn't have any fabric for the binding.  After searching through my fabric stash--which is not nearly as evolved as her fabric stash--I called and asked her if she had anything left I could use for binding? 

Yesterday, I was once again shopping in her stash.  My husband and I recently built a custom ironing table for her sewing room and we delivered it to her yesterday.  It looks just like mine.  See all the potential storage?  She now has room for 6 more chapters in the saga: Anthology of Modern Textiles--a more sophisticated phrase than "fabric stash."
Back to the quilt--she brought out her meager scraps left from the quilt top fabric and I could see that I would have to piece the binding from 2-3 different colors.  Now, I have done that many times, but this quilt did not scream SCRAPPY BINDING!
As we were standing there debating, my husband was doing a 360⁰ in the room looking at everything.  He teases her about her fabric stash but after 35 years of marriage knows better than to tease me about my fabric stash.  Besides, after he sees her fabric in all it's glory he feels better about mine.

Bless his heart!  He said, "What's that up there in that box on top of that shelf?  All I could see in a plastic storage box was some tan fabric with black circles. WHAT?  She brought the box down.  Lo and behold--nestled among layers of other carefully folded fabrics was this wonderful and perfect stripe with all the colors I needed.  Somehow, he had zeroed in on the only yard of fabric in the whole room that would work. 
I guess I need to take him fabric shopping with me more often.

Every baby deserves some Minky!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Brown/Cream Sampler

This delightful sampler was quilted with Sew Fine threads: brown and cream.  I used the cream on the back and changed back and forth between the two colors for the light and dark areas on the top.  The batting is 100% Cotton-Warm and Natural.  Backing fabric is unbleached muslin.  After it is washed, it will crinkle up and look just like it came out of Grandma's closet!

Close up of center
I did a feather meander to fill up the wide brown border and I think it looks like it came from another era.

Close up of outer border

Center closeups 

Inner border

It was a little tricky getting the tension just right so I could use the brown thread on top in the darker areas and not have it show on the backing.  It turned out pretty well.

I hope I get to see it after it's bound and washed~


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