Island Batik Ambassador

A Wee Little Quilt

Mini Love“Mini Love” is the theme for my second project as an ambassador for Island Batiks Fabric. For this project, I wanted to make a mini quilt, which is usually defined for competition purposes, as a scale model version of a full-size quilt pattern, usually a scale of 1/4″ = 1″. That means a miniature version of a 12″ traditional quilt block would be just 3″ square.

Believe it or not, a miniature quilt block is harder to make than a full-size block, because while accuracy is important with a full-size block, it is crucial in a mini block. By their very size, mini quilts invite close inspection.

IMG_2076For my mini quilt, I chose a version of the Ohio Star, and chose to celebrate the Irish portion of my DNA by using greens and oranges from the “Stash Builder” collection of 5″ strips that was included in the lovely box of fabrics that Island Batiks sent me. I’m using Aurifil 50-wt thread, courtesy of the company, and Heirloom batting provided by Hobbs.

 

IMG_2091I have a friend who likes to count the number of pieces in a block, and she would be quick to point out that there are 29 pieces in each of these mini Ohio Star blocks. I prefer to think in terms of units. Each block has four quarter-square triangles, and four half-square triangle units with a little accent corner. Plus, of course, the center square. It seems not quite so intimidating. Still- that’s a lot of pieces.

 

IMG_2081There are nine blocks in this quilt. When I have blocks with those accent corners, I will usually carry that out into the border. To do this for this mini quilt, I cut sixteen 3.5″ squares. I added orange on two corners of twelve of the squares, and one orange corner on the remaining four.

 

 

 

IMG_2092It took me a while to decide how to quilt this little gem. I decided to trace around the octagons in each block, and crosshatch the border, using the star tips as my starting points. To keep my lines straight, I used a square ruler, with the diagonal line placed along the border seam, drew a very (very) light line with a #4 drafting pencil.

When machine quilting, I adjust my stitch length from 2.5mm to 3.0, and loosen my top thread tension just a tad.

After quilting, I added a binding that was similar to the fabric in my center squares, and here is “Indiana Irish,” celebrating my family roots in the Emerald Isle and the Hoosier State. This little treasure will be hanging in the kitchen while the corned beef and potatoes are cooking on St. Patrick’s Day.

Indiana Irish

“Indiana Irish”  2018 by Anne Wiens

Check out the blogs of my fellow Island Batik Ambassadors:

Den Syende Himmel

Busy Hands Quilts

PamelaQuilts

Ark Angel Creations

Desert Bloom Quilting

Freemotion by the River

Yellow Cat Quilt Designs

Quilting Affection Designs

Inquiring Quilter

Bejeweled Quilts by Barb

Clever Chameleon

Sarah Goer Quilts

Mania for Quilts

Steph Jacobson

Inchworm Fabrics

Kauffman Designs

Moosestash Quilting 

BeaQuilter

Gateway Quilts & Stuff

Carole Lyles Shaw

Sally Manke

Mary Mack Made Mine

Kathleen McMusing

heARTs Creations

Sew Karen-ly Created

If These Threads Could Talk

The Quilt Rambler

Devoted Quilter

Slice of Pi Quilts

Creative Blonde

Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting

Masterpiece Quilting

Patterns by Jen

Powered by Quilting

Quilt in a not-Shell

Dizzy Quilter

Curlicue Creations

Lizard Creek Quilts

Little Bunny Quilts

MMM Quilts

Sew Increadibly Crazy

Adventerous Applique and Quilting

Sweetgrass Designs

Living Water Quilter

Whispers of Yo

Our next challenge: “Try a Technique”. I’m looking forward to that!

 

 

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Categories: Aurifil Threads, Hobbs Batting, Island Batik Ambassador, Island Batik Fabric, Miniatures, Tools, Tucket Trimmer (Studio 180 Designs), Uncategorized, Wallhangings | 5 Comments

GALentine? It’s a Thing.

You learn something new everyday.

The first of the monthly challenge projects for the 2018 Island Batik Ambassadors was to make a mug rug celebrating Galentine’s Day. That is not a typo. Galentine’s Day is an actual thing. Inspired by a character on the television series “Parks & Recreation”, it is a day set aside to celebrate our female friends.

For future reference, Galentine’s Day is February 13th.

Island Batik sent me a pretty little bundle of five pink, red and neutral fat quarters to use in my mug rug, and I promptly set three of them aside and broke open the Stash Builder package of  5″ strips. I decided to make an 8″ hexagonal block that I designed to teach the Sidekick® tool designed by Julie at Jaybird Quilts.

Figure 1

Figure 3

Figure 2

 

The feature I like…no, love…about the Sidekick is that your triangles have a flat top, which (Fig. 1) makes them easy to line up for stitching. No trying to eyeball that perfect 1/4″ notch. If you press your seams open (Fig. 2), you have a dog-ear that also helps (Fig 3.) in positioning your pieces.

For this mat, I cut 24 1.5″ triangles from the off-white dotted fabric and a dozen 1.5″ triangles from the beige and green print. I also cut six 2.5″ triangles of a multicolor print, and six light pint and twelve dark pink 1.5″ diamonds.

Setting aside the larger triangles, I sewed six of each of these pieced units.

Notice the difference in the top two units. In one the darker triangle is to the right of the dark pink diamond, and in the other, the darker triangle is on the left of the diamond.

 

 

Then, those three units are stitched to the multicolored triangles to make six matching triangle segments.

You can trim those dog-ears off now if they bother you. If they don’t shadow through the fabric, I just leave them be.

 

 

 

 

Now you can sew the segments together. Sew two half-hexagons, with three segments in each one, then sew the halves together to complete your hexagon. At this point, it measures 8.5″ top to bottom.

Layer your top, batting and backing. I used a little corner of the 80/20 Heirloom batting Hobbs sent me in this project, and quilted it with the ecru thread provided by Aurifil.

 

I quilted 1/8th inch around the outside of the lighter pink center star, and the larger multi-color star, then inside the beige and green diamonds on the outer edge of the mat. I also decided to go back and quilt inside the center star.

I was able to use the inside edge of my machine’s 1/4″ foot as my guide.

 

I used a 2″ folded binding in the beige and green print to finish my Galentine’s Day mug rug.

Thanks again to Island Batik, Hobbs and Aurifil for sponsoring the Ambassadors!

One project down, thirteen to go! Up next: Mini Love. In fact, a few of my fellow Island Batik Ambassadors have already begun posting their mini quilts.

Follow the links below to visit their blogs.

 

Barbara at Bejeweled Quilts
Bea at BeaQuilter
Jeanette at Inchworm Fabrics
Jennifer at Curlicue Creations
Jennifer at Dizzy Quilter
Jennifer at Inquiring Quilter
Kathleen at Kathleen McMusing
Leanne at Devoted Quilter
Maryellen at Mary Mack Made Mine
Michelle at Creative Blonde
Pamela at PamelaQuilts
Sally at Sally Manke
Sandra at MMM Quilts
Stephanie at Steph Jacobson

 

Categories: Aurifil Threads, FQ Projects, Hobbs Batting, Island Batik Ambassador, Island Batik Fabric, Other Blocks & Patterns, Placemats, Tools | 3 Comments

Will Work for Fabric

If I thought I was busy in 2017 – and I was- 2018 is going to be a continuous “mad dash to the deadline.” No, no, don’t feel sorry for me. It’s my own fault. I tend to dive headlong into design opportunities especially when there’s company-supplied fabric involved. And so, when fellow designer Cindy Wiens mentioned the Island Batik “Ambassador” program, I had to check it out…and apply…and they accepted!

First, they sent me some nifty artwork to display proudly on my blog:

Next came an email from FedEx that my first (there will be two this year) shipment of fabric was on its way. Another ambassador pointed out that the package weighed 22lbs. Holy Cow!

On the way home the other evening, I stopped for Chinese take-out. This was the fortune in my cookie:

I arrived home to find a very large box on my doorstep.

Before I show you what was inside, I need to point out that the fabrics were supplied by Island Batik, the battings by Hobbs, and the threads by Aurifil.

First was this little bundle of five fat quarters for my first project, a GALentine’s Day mug rug. GALentine. I’d never heard of it, but it’s a thing. More about that when I post the project this weekend.

There was a twin-size cotton batting from Hobbs. It’s wonderful stuff – and I’m not just saying that because they gave it to me.

And there was a queen-size Thermore, Hobbs‘ super-thin poly batting. This should be perfect for my mug rug and other small projects.

Yes, Auri-philes, that is six spools and one huge cone of Aurifil threads. I’ll share the brochures, but not the thread!

 

Island Batik calls this package a “Stash Builder”. It contains five rolls, and each roll has four different 5″ wide strips of various prints. Imagine the possibilities.

Next came this collection of fat eighths, plus a couple yards of a coordinate. This collection is called “Mountains Majesty.”

Here’s a side view of the Mountains Majesty bundle. My muse thinks he has an idea for this collection.

Then I found this lovely rayon scarf and a couple yards of this aquamarine color rayon print. I’ve never worked with rayon, so this will be an adventure.

There were several yards from Island Batik’s “foundation” collection.

Island Batik‘s collection of 42 10″ squares is called a “Stack”.  This one is called “Northern Woods”, and it was accompanied by two coordinates.

And then there was this:

I haven’t opened it, because I am under strict orders not to show the contents to anyone yet, and, well, I know me. I do know this much – it is full of brand new Island Batiks that will be introduced to shops at Quilt Market this spring, so they will be arriving at your local quilt shop this summer.

Yes, it’s all mine, and all Island Batik, Hobbs and Aurifil asked in return is that I produce a series of projects using them over the next few months!

I am proud to be one of the 45 Island Batik Ambassadors for 2018. Each of us will be posting projects on our blogs monthly. Most have already posted their GALentines projects, so grab your favorite beverage, and prepare to be inspired!

Barbara at Bejeweled Quilts
Bea at BeaQuilter
Jeanette at Inchworm Fabrics
Jennifer at Curlicue Creations
Jennifer at Dizzy Quilter
Jennifer at Inquiring Quilter
Kathleen at Kathleen McMusing
Leanne at Devoted Quilter
Maryellen at Mary Mack Made Mine
Michelle at Creative Blonde
Pamela at PamelaQuilts
Sally at Sally Manke
Sandra at MMM Quilts
Stephanie at Steph Jacobson

 

 

Categories: Aurifil Threads, FQ Projects, Hobbs Batting, Island Batik Ambassador, Island Batik Fabric, Other Projects | 6 Comments

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