Sunday, May 22, 2016

Hands2Help Finishes

When I decided to join the Hands2Help challenge hosted by Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, I knew that I would use a group of charm packets I had "won" in a giveaway from Moda. (You can read that story here.) What I didn't realize until I started planning the first quilt was that I had plenty of charms to make two quilts--with more to spare. The charms were from a lot of different collections, but they coordinated well together with similar vintage-y looks and colors and a good spread of values. 

For the first quilt, I included charms with floral motifs and then filled in with other patterns. I did not pay much attention to color, but focused on dark, medium and light values, and I named the quilt Old Fashioned Values because--well, vintage and color values. The pattern is based on Flower Patch Quilt by Kathryn Ludowese.

Even a light breeze makes a quilt into a sail. I fought it with hangers attached to the bottom of the quilt. Not too classy, but they did the job. 

If you look closely at the back, you can see narrow strips of another fabric at the top and bottom of the backing. I wasn't planning on making pieced backs for these quilts because I knew that my time for making them would be limited, so I bought one length of fabric for the two quilts. I forgot to compensate for shrinkage when I pre-washed it, though, so it was about four inches too short. I happened to have some fabric in my stash that was a good match. So this backing got just a bit of unplanned piecing, but it all worked out fine in the end, and I was able to use up some stash. Always a good thing. I used a combination of walking foot quilting and FMQ. I even learned how to use the guide bar thingie that came with my walking foot to help space the lines. I really like how the alternating lines and meanders look together--and they show up nicely on the back, too.

For the second quilt, I bought a light print to use as a background for the remaining charms, then pieced them randomly. After I put them up willy nilly on the design wall, I decided to try a gradation of values from very dark in one corner to very light in the opposite corner. I spent a WHOLE DAY arranging and rearranging and generally driving myself crazy taking picture after picture to view in grayscale. In the end, I decided that I just didn't have a good variety of values left to make it work, so I went back to the random layout.  I'm calling this quilt Leftovers! After I made it, it occurred to me that the general design--especially the layout I was trying with the values--is similar to Pocketful of Sunshine by Sandra at mmm! quilts (the pattern that got so many downloads on Craftsy). I told her I was unwittingly channeling her! So, yeah. Sandra is my inspiration for this one. 

I worked really hard to make widely spaced meanders (not like my usual denser quilting). I like how soft the quilt feels with less quilting. I also confirmed with this quilt that I prefer quilting away from myself (pulling the quilt toward me) when I can. I can see what I've done, and I don't put as much drag on the quilt as I pull it around. 

Now, don't go away yet. There are more pictures to share. I usually take pictures of quilts on my neighbor's fence, but it slopes downhill a bit, which makes things a little wonky, and it's getting boring. So I am determined to find and use more attractive locations. This past week, I ventured out beyond the confines of my backyard to visit our neighborhood sledding hill for a photo shoot in nature. I'll show those pictures in a minute. But first the details for these quilts: 

Old Fashioned Values Quilt
Size: 68 by 54 1/2 inches before quilting 
         67 by 53 1/2 after quilting 
         63 7/8 by 51 7/8 after washing/drying

Batting: Warm and Natural
Leftovers! Quilt
Size: 69 by 57 inches before quilting 
         67 by 56 after quilting 
         64 1/4 by 53 1/4 after washing/drying

Batting: I'm not sure. I'm pretty sure it was all cotton. I bought it off a bolt awhile ago thinking it was Quilter's Dream Select, but I'm not sure it was. It was harder to quilt than the Warm and Natural--my needle seemed to have some trouble piercing little "knobs" across the surface. It does have a good drape and feels a little spongy--in a good way. 

Sashing: 2 inch strips (1 1/2 inches finished), tan-on-white vine print from Joann (no info on selvage).
Borders: 2 1/4 inch strips (1 3/4 inches finished), same print from Joann.

Both Quilts  
Machines: Singer Featherweight for piecing; Singer 115 treadle for quilting

Thread: Superior Masterpiece in Granite for piecing. Superior King Tut in White Linen for quilting. 

Collections of Moda charms: 
Collection for a Cause Mill Book Series circa 1889 by Howard Marcus
Garden House by Jan Patek Quilts
Larkspur by 3 Sisters
Lizzie's Legacy 1850-1880 by Betsy Chutchian
Songbird Gatherings by Primative Gatherings
Southern Exposure by Laundry Basket Quilts
The Potting Shed by  Holly Taylor
Ville Fleurie by French General

Backings: Mostly a vine print by Fabric Traditions, plus a little extra unknown print from my stash for the shortage on the Old Fashioned Values quilt.
Bindings: Unknown old print from my stash (leftover from a quilt I made for my son-in-law when he was in college).

Okay, more pictures. After all, they'll be all I have left after I give the quilts away.

It doesn't look like it, but that's quite a big hill for sledding.

Play structure at the top of another hill.

I'm still learning how to display the quilts, but it was a fun photo shoot, and now I know I'll be on the lookout for other places to record my quilts.

I am truly grateful to Moda for sending me these charms. At first I didn't think they were my style, but I really had fun sorting them by value and motif, and now that the quilts are done, I like them! A lot! I don't have much experience sewing with charms and wasn't sure I'd enjoy it. But I was impressed with how neat the tiny pinking on the edges stayed through a LOT of handling. I would definitely sew with charms again. 

These two quilts will be on their way to give comfort and hope to patients through Happy Chemo. 

I'm linking up today with the Hands2Help linky party at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, and the rest of the week, with My Quilt Infatuation, TGIFF, Free Motion Mavericks, and Crazy Mom Quilts. I'll add the links as the week progresses. Buttons for most are also on the right sidebar.  

Confessions Of A Fabric Addict

Have a lovely week, no matter who you are quilting for!


  1. Your quilts are stunning. Both quilts are going to be loved and treasured.

  2. So, so pretty! What a great job you did on these quilts. I'm inspired by your quilting: I love the giant meander, and the combo of straight lines and meander worked so well, too. I'm just learning to think more about value and I can see how well you used value differences to make your pattern stand out. Thanks for sharing your hard work.

  3. You did a lovely job on your photo shoot. Your Quilts are beautiful! Your hard work will be very much appreciated. Taking photos is what keeps me from posting more often.

  4. Beautiful quilts and photos!! I really love the bench shots!
    You also put together gorgeously, all of the different fabric lines!
    I am sure the recipients will adore their beautiful new quilts!!

  5. Great job on both of these! They turned out great and I like the vintage look of them. Your photo shoot is gorgeous-- love the green, lush background.

  6. Two beautiful quilts and great photos. Love your patterns and that you quilted your initials and the year on one of the squares.

  7. Both of these are really beautiful quilts Janine - you did a wonderful job with your Moda win! I had a lot of fun looking at all your photos and also seeing the close up shots! Hmmm... I've never tried free motion quilting away from me and maybe I'll give that a shot next time! I love that you were channeling Sandra. :)

  8. Yay1 Love your photo shoot! I am ALWAYS on the lookout for interesting places, and I do seem to have a plethora of them close to home...I like that you stitched the date with your initials on the quilts; I did my initials (I think on both of mine) but not the date. I LOVE how these two came to life after you quilted them, especially Old Fashioned Values (went back and read that post; I missed it). I just said to Judy (Quilt Paradigm) yesterday after I finished my aunt's quilt how much I love an allover quilting design and here you're saying too how soft the quilt is, and it IS! I wonder if the other batting was Nature's Touch? I love it, although I don't have any issues with hitting any nubbins, but it does seem to be softer than Warm 'n Natural which I also love...Tee hee, I got a warm (hotflash, lol) fuzzy feeling when you said you were channeling me on my PoS pattern! Thank you for that. :-) I love to play around with values too, but ya they can sometimes give me a king-size headache, rather than a king-size quilt! Oh, and what a hoot that you discovered you have a quarter inch foot after all! Great post. Great gifts.

  9. I just love the one with big squares. So simple and so effective. Plus the pictures are like a model's photo shoot

  10. Your quilts are lovely, JanineMarie! I especially like the first one - great pattern! Thanks for participating in H2H this year!

  11. What beautiful quilts! I especially love the straight and curvy quilting. Your photographs really show them off well.

  12. These both look great, with beautiful quilting! Sure to be appreciated. I really love the play yard photos. How creative!

  13. This is so interesting: I probably wouldn't have chosen these fabrics but I too really like your finishes, especially the first one. Both quilts have a nice old-fashioned in a good way vibe going on, very comforting and warm. Love the photoshoot too!

  14. beautiful quilts and for such a good cause!

  15. Hello Janine Marie,
    Thank you for linking up! These quilts are so beautiful that I have made them this week's featured project at Free Motion Mavericks. You have such a wonderful eye for colour.
    Love, Muv