Friday, February 24, 2017

Fire Hydrant Quilt Block and Kennel Quilts

There were 2 items on the Island Batik Ambassador list for the month of February. The Galentine's Day post here. And the opportunity to make and donate small kennel quilts to pet shelters that are affected by natural disasters. Find more information on the partnership with Island Batik and The Quilt Pattern Magazine here.

Just for the cuteness!!! This is Maya--my son's hunting dog and my daughter-in-love's tv watching partner!! Who knows what she is thinking here!!!

When I think of dogs--fire hydrants come to mind--and then the creativity kicked in. So I drew up a hydrant in the 12" x 18" size that is required for the Kennel Quilt. Then using 2 1/2" strips of Island Batik fabrics pieced together the cutest little quilt. Along with 2 other ones, ready to be sent of to a shelter in need.

 I have written the instructions for making your own Fire Hydrant Quilt Block  or on my Craftsy store. I think they would be cute in all sorts of fun colors or scrappy reds and yellows for the Fireman in your life.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Using Silhouette to cut Island Batik fabric applique for Galentine's Day

Galentine's Day--yeah not a typo, but apparently a made up holiday for the day before Valentine's Day to share some love with your BFF's or any other women in your going with that theme, I have a few gals in my life that are going through some serious health struggles. They were on my mind and in my prayers as I made these little mug rug type quilts for them.
Isn't this just a great palate of colors to work with--the apple one was too cute to cut up this time but keep an eye out for it in future projects!!
I have had my Silhouette digital cutting machine for a couple years and while I have used it for many paper crafting projects, I had never tried to cut out my applique pieces with it...until today. I drew up a couple arrows and some hearts in the machine's software, applied Steam a Seam 2 to the back of my fabric pieces and sent it through the machine with the suggested settings.

And then this happened!! The fabric pieces stayed on my mat nicely..but it didn't cut through the fusible. It took some tugging to get the heart out--and since the arrows where much thinner and more fragile, I had to rethink my approach.
So I tried again...this time with Heat and Bond Lite. And look at the wonderfully cut applique pieces!! Oh wow, a whole new world has just opened up to me!!! If you are interested, the settings I used to achieve these results are:
Blade setting of 6
Speed setting of 2
Thickness setting of 33
As a side note--my blade is pretty old and getting dull, so I probably should have put a new one in..but I like to live life on the edge and just went for it!!
Next, I cut 2--5" squares from these fabrics, making this a charm pack friendly project!! Sew them together to make a four patch. Make sure to "spin" the seam allowances on the back, making for less bulk.
After applying the applique pieces according to manufactures instructions, I layered the batting and backing pieces and took it to my sewing machine. I have recently added a Bernina sewing machine with the BSR attachment to my workspace. I have not played with it much, but when I do, it is super fun and so easy to do small intricate quilting. I like to applique down my pieces with a doodle type quilting design. Going around the designs twice for a sketchy doodly look!! Since the applique arrows were quite narrow, I used a 60 wt Bottom Line thread by Superior for the sketching.
Add the binding to the back and bring it around the front to topstitch down.
And there you have it!! Two gifts of love and prayers to be sent to a couple friends in need. I plan to write an encouraging note and a scripture passage on the back of each before I send them off.

Thank you so much to Island Batik for jump-starting me into creative gifts of love again!!

Sunday, February 12, 2017

New Adventure....Island Batik Ambassador--2017!

So what exactly is Terri doing now you may ask?!? I am going to be an ambassador for the fabric company Island Batik. The company has been in business for 14 years, delivering quality handmade wax resist batik fabrics made in Bali, Indonesia by skilled artisans to independent quilt shops across the United States.
The company launches new seasonal lines twice a year. Each launch corresponding with International Quilt Market that occurs in May and October. Even though the fabrics are ordered by the quilt shops in May and October, they are not delivered to the stores until August/July and January/February. This is because each fabric ordered is made to order!! How cool is that?!
A group of 35 Ambassadors, including me!! Will receive a box of fabric and thread twice a year. In this box is a collection of current fabrics and new--soon to be released fabrics!! Along with gorgeous coordinating threads from Aurifil and Superior. It truely is a 13 pound box of quilty goodness!!
My box arrived this past week. Each Ambassador's box is hand selected according to the tastes and prefferences that were chosen. Although these fabrics have such rich vibrant color that even if I said to "surprise me" everything in the box would be great to work with.
 The bit of blurred out fabric will be showing up later in some super special sewing project!!
We are given a list of events for the year with a special required project every month. The project is to be made with the fabrics from the box and then shared with you all in a blog post, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or any other social media account.
This tower of 5" width of fabric strips are great for stash building, especially for applique projects. Two times a year there will be a Island Batik sponsored Blog Hop, where new fabric collections will be revealed and projects made with those fabrics will be showcased on all the Ambassador's blogs. Watch for some fabric giveaways during these hops!!!
So I hope you will join me on the amazing journey this year!! I can't wait to share all the colors and amazing new projects with you!!!