Inspired Layers – Linda's Blog

Linda's quilting adventures

Island Batik Box 2 Reveal! August 14, 2017

Filed under: guild talks,Island Batik,Uncategorized — inspiredlayerslinda @ 2:06 pm

This is truly a “Christmas in August” for me. I must admit that I was just as excited to open this package as I was every Christmas to find the one special present under the tree for me.  It was unique.  My brothers and sister didn’t receive a similar package.  It was as unique as I am. Thanks Mom, for starting my stitching career off with so much excitement!

If you watch my video link on the true reveal of Island Batik Box #2, you will find out why I was so excited.

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I did run to the washing machine and dryer with my rayon fabric.  Luckily I read about rayon and how to treat it. I learned a lot.  I didn’t know rayon shrunk so much! I used a color catcher. I drafter two patterns that very same day…..Then I went to JoAnn’s (my least favorite store) for some material to test my new pattern.  By the end of the day, mission accomplished.

I’m waiting to used my rayon fabric for the pattern….or the other pattern….You see I cannot decide which one to make. I’ll probably run to New England Fabrics in Keene, NH where they sell Island Batik rayon fabric and make both designs….One from the fabric from my box and one from some other luscious Island Batik rayon. Stay tuned…

What was in my box?….besides rayon? lots of new fabrics that will be in your quilt shops in December/January.

What happened to my plans for my Quilt As You Go project for August? They changed.  I couldn’t sleep after seeing Lea Day’s fabric.  There were four medallions…They are in my Quilt As You Go project.  I’m writing that blog next….stay tuned!

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Do you see the rayon?  It’s the 2.5 yards of navy blue with a wavy design on it.  Lea Day’s fabric is the purple fabric.

I’m really excited to be writing a new talk to give next year, “Stranded on Island Batik.” If your guild  would like some challenge ideas or a night of funny stories and lots of hints on how to approach a challenge, give me a call.  Book a fun night with my Island Batik trunk show! Call 508-769-7881 today!

Did you buy yourself some special fabric in July or August as a present to yourself? I’d love to see how you reacted to that purchase. Make something, tell a story and post it!

Happy Quilting,

Linda Ramrath

Inspired Layers

Inspiredlayers.com

 

Oh Baby! July 24, 2017

How exciting for me to have July challenge from Island Batik, a baby challenge.  My niece, Maria gave birth to her first child, JJ on 7/22/2017! I had already made a quilt for JJ and sent it along to the baby shower earlier this summer.  I was so inspired to make another in anticipation of his birth! Everyone is doing well and I am relieved that I finished this blog post before turning the calendar page to August!

Here is my baby quilt, inspired and created by a layer cake, “Spoolin’ Around” and the background fabric is a Batik cotton Blender BE22-C1.

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I started with a simple 9-patch block idea…

Then I decided to put half square triangle sections in the four corners…

I wanted a 4 1/2″ square in the middle…

Then I remembered a block I had seen on Pinterest…off I went to search for the block…knowing that I liked the way it looked folded over in the corners…

Voila, my block with very simple units:

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The cutting directions are very simple:

Center fabric: 4 1/2″ square and 8, 2 1/2″ squares

Light fabric: 4, 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ rectangles

Dark fabric: 2, 4 7/8″ squares cut diagonally

Background fabric: 2, 4 7/8″ squares cut diagonally and 4, 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ rectangles.

I did cut some lattice strips so that each block was floating.

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Make the half square triangles from the two large squares.

IMG_20170714_200623957My favorite way to make flying geese sections is by using my Sew Easy Guide!

I stitch one square onto the rectangle background piece from corner to corner. No pins!….Trim and press to corner.

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Next, Stitch other squares to the other side, corner to corner.

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Trim a quarter of an inch away from the stitching line and press.

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Stitch each row together and then stitch the three rows together to make the block. I nested the seam allowances to make a nice smooth block for quilting.

My quilting design included stitch in the ditch, some curves in the flying geese triangle sections and a feather in the center sections.  Then I used a stencil to make curvy lines in the background.  I washed the mark’n trace off with cold water.

Then I bound the quilt with scraps which I pieced together on the diagonal.

This was such a fun project! I finished it the day JJ was born!

Here are the links to all the other Island Batik Ambassador’s blogs to see what Oh Baby! treasures they made with Island Batik fabrics.

Nan from Purrfect Spots Designs
Turid from Den Syende Himmel
Stephanie from Quilt’n Party
Pamela from Pamela Quilts
Anna from Ark Angel Creations
Kathy from Kathy’s Kwilts and More
Jessica from Desert Bloom Quilting
Connie from Freemotion by the River
Kate from Seams Like a Dream
Sharon from Yellow Cat Quilt Designs
Tina from Quilting Affection Designs
Jennifer from The Inquiring Quilter
Barb from Bejeweled Quilts
Sally from Sally’s Quilting Corner
Jeanette from Inch Worm Fabrics
Connie from Kauffman Designs
Joan from Moosestash Quilting
Bernadine from Needle and Foot
Bea from Beaquilter
Cheryl from Cheryl Lynch Quilts
Maryellen from Mary Mack’s Blog
Joyce from Hearts Creations
Marlene from Kissed Quilts
Karen from The Quilt Rambler
Marian from Seams to be Sew
Laura from Slice of Pi Quilts
Linda from Inspired Layers
Vicki from Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting
Nancy from Masterpiece Quilting
Carol from FunThreads Designs
Terri from Meanderings Along Lizard Creek
Alison from Little Bunny Quilts
Suzy from Adventurous Applique and Quilting
Jean-Sophie from Sophie Junction
Janet from Whispers of Yore

 

Linda Ramrath

Inspired Layers

 

Curvalicious Part 2 June 12, 2017

 

This second Curvalicious quilt started with warm weather, a quilting meeting at a friend’s home, and some lemon slices in water. After a very cold and rainy spring, the warm day and thirst quenching lemon infused water was perfect!

Have you ever sliced a lemon, used two slices and left the rest of the slices in your refrigerator to ultimately be forgotten?  My friend shared a valuable trick.  Chuck-slice the lemon and squeeze some into the water today and freeze the remaining chuncks. Next time you reach for ice in the freezer, take a few pieces of lemon for your water too!

 

In the “Country Dozen” collection of Island Batik fabric, there is a blue batik with yellow lemons.  That’s the fabric I started with to make this June challenge table runner.

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I love the drunkard’s path block and I found a new (to me) tool with pattern called QCR Mini by Sew Kind of Wonderfil. The tool was easy to use and my blocks were easy to square up so they all match when sewn together.

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I followed the directions for this QCR Mini Runner and it was fast and fun! To stitch the curves, I used my Martelli Notions 1/4″ Curvemaster foot. No stress, No pins, and no puckers.

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I think the key is to put the “smile” curve down first and the “frown” on top.  Also, move the bottom piece with your right hand, left and the top piece with your left hand, right. Here’s how I laid out my design and stitch four patches.

I pressed the 4-patch units and wiggled the back to make the little 4-patch so it would lay flat for quilting.

I used a scrap of Quilters’ Dream cotton batting and backed it with more Island Batik fabric, yellow with eggs on it. Here is my “thinking” on Quilter’s Preview Paper for the quilting.  I used  Fantastico Thread and it quilted like a dream.

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I used the same lemon fabric for the binding.  This is a fast and fun project.  Let your fabric speak to you!

One more Curvalicious challenge quilt to show you next week! (Am I having too much fun with this job?)

Happy Stitching!

Linda Ramrath

Inspired Layers

p.s. If you would like to invite me to speak at your guild next year and show you all the fabulous quilts I made to go along with each challenge, book me today! 508-769-7881!

 

Adventurous Applique April 12, 2017

This month as an Island Batik Ambassador, I was challenged to create a small quilt and be adventurous with applique. If you remember last month, I tried mini English Paper Piecing the Dresden Plate.  This month, I combined Clamshell English Paper Piecing, needle turn applique and a scrappy pieced binding.  It was an adventure.

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It all started with the box from Island Batik which I received in February. There were a lot of new fabrics which will be out this April at market for shop owners to purchase.  I used some of the new fabrics in the pineapple.  If you like those fabrics, share your enthusiasm with your local quilt shop owner. They can look for them and order them at market!

I chose the pineapple because in Vermont I have enjoyed buying and tasting such sweet pineapples this winter. It is the sign of hospitality. I feel so welcomed into the Barnard community. I enjoy local concerts with world class talent.  I enjoy quilting with two different groups of women.  I enjoy skiing right across the street along an old wood road with snowmobile trail. I hope I am as hospitable to those who venture up our long dirt driveway to our log home as this community has been to me. This quilt resides at the door of my studio.

What makes this adventurous to me is that I combined several skills.  I learned that I like the look of English Paper Piecing when I stitch with silk or fine polyester thread.  I found the silk thread stronger than the polyester thread. I must admit that I stitched part of this while I was stuck in Keene, NH due to snowstorms, with no silk thread, so I opted to continue to work on the project with the aurifil thread that I had on hand. It’s a bit thicker (40wt.).  When I quilted the quilt, the stitching began to show….Lesson learned! Below is the front and back side of the quilt.  I cut away the fabric behind the English Paper Piecing so that I could remove the papers. I left the fabric behind the needle turn applique.  I could have removed that fabric too.

I purchased a few new rulers to use when free motion quilting. As many of you know, I love to freemotion quilt! I am relaxed and thoroughly enjoy the process.  After attending the tour with Cathy Wiggins at MQX, I was encouraged to buy a few rulers.  The judges give you more points for more perfect free motion or hand guided stitching. I decided this was the perfect quilt to try one of my rulers. I did the roping in the outer border with D’Loa’s Rope a Dope 1.5″ ruler. I did look at her video and draw the rope on paper before I stitched the quilt. It’s important to draw the centerline for this rope to look best in a straight border. I felt my shoulders raise a bit.  It was more mechanical and not fluid for me.  With a bit more practice, I hope this ruler remains in my tool box.  Time will tell.  I also learned that since I stitch on a sit down Sweet 16 Handi Quilter, it’s time to purchase the mat.  I have never had trouble with smoothly moving the quilt over the machine and table area until I had a ruler in my hand.  I have already ordered the mat and look forward to trying this ruler again once the mat is in place.

Here’s the finished quilt again:

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Now I have a question for you…Would you change the slant of the rope on the bottom border to be opposite of the top border? Same question for the left and right side. Should they be opposite to one another?

One more adventurous element, the binding! After being inspired by an award winning quilt at MQX, and not having enough dark blue batik to make a binding, I knew I had to introduce some of my scraps. I cut the binding only 1 1/4″ wide and sewed a single fold binding. I chose little scraps from the 5″ squares left over from the leaf fabrics, I sewed triangles pointing in the same direction as the leaves into the dark blue strip. Then I selected a green batik from my stash builder fabrics to fill in the rest. Even if this quilt will never be judged, it’s nice to put to use some knowledge from my recent tour at MQX. It certainly made this quilt a memorable adventure for me.

I hope you with fill your April 2017 with more adventurous quilting.

Book me to speak to your guild or women’s group in 2018 to hear a new talk on my 2017 Island Batik Journey. I’m collecting stories and creating new quilts and patterns every month!

Linda

Inspiredlayers.com

 

MQX 2017 April 8, 2017

I’m still on a high from my MQX experience!  I decided to spend two nights in a hotel so that I wasn’t rushing through the quilts and vendors and flying home in time to make dinner for my hubby.  It was a great decision.  I was more relaxed and enjoyed the experience so much more.  Here are some of my favorite take aways from MQX 2017:

  1. I enjoyed seeing all the quilts and special exhibits.
  2. I enjoyed seeing friends from guilds who invited me to speak and friends from guilds I use to belong to when I lived in MA.
  3. I enjoyed introducing myself to the SAQA members who I’ve spoken to or emailed over the past few months.
  4. I enjoyed taking the tour of the Winning Quilts with Cathy Wiggins.  I learned a lot.
  5. I enjoyed seeing my new friends from Vermont and New Hampshire guilds which I joined.
  6. I enjoyed sharing some tips with a quilter who wanted more information on collage and confetti techniques.
  7. I enjoyed sharing my quilting world with a friend who isn’t a quilter, but enjoys dipping her toes into all sorts of fun activities.
  8. I enjoyed how friendly everyone was who was working at the show.
  9. I enjoyed the atmosphere from morning to late night.
  10. I enjoyed purchasing new rulers to experiment with.
  11. I enjoyed being inspired!

I used to say that I quilt for fun.  Well, now the passion has taken hold of me and I quilt daily for therapy and fun! I’m open to new ideas and always looking to break some rules.

My guild talks are constantly changing because my quilts are constantly changing.  This keep everything fresh and inspiring.

It was gratifying to learn that quilt judges appreciate quilters who take a risk, use more than one technique and perfect and reinvent techniques.

My friends at Small Pond Quilting worked together to design and construct this quilt:

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Notice the very bottom where the little triangles, squares and rectangles are tucked in and color co-ordinated too!

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On the left hand side, top and part of the right top side a multicolored flange was inserted with the binding.

This takes “binding” to a new level. This inspires me to keep pushing my quilts out of the box.

The other tip I took away from the show was that sit down quilters can manage to use rulers and that gives them better scores when quilts are judged. Thankfully my large hands will be an asset for this technique.

MQX rulers

I purchased the stencil and rulers shown above. I will experiment with roping, clamshells, and curved lattice tomorrow.  This month’s Doodle club will show a video of me using one of these rulers.

I also purchased lights which adhere under the arm of my Sweet 16 Handi Quilter. Having more light is always a good idea to save my eyes from getting old too soon.  The tips from the Handi Quilter staff at the booth at MQX was helpful too!

I’m looking forward to attending next year’s MQX show, taking some classes and volunteering too!  I hope you will make time for yourself and your creativity to bloom.

Mark your calendar for April 4-7, 2018!  See you there!

Linda

Inspired Layers

 

This Week (47) I… November 25, 2014

Filed under: A Quilter's Touch,classes,free motion quilting,guild talks,HCAT,quilt shows — inspiredlayerslinda @ 3:09 pm

…shared my quilts and a few laughs with Stafford Mill Quilters in Connecticut.

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On Friday the Holliston Senior Center Quilters had lots of show and tell.  Some were working on their “Farmer’s Market” quilt with very different fabrics.  When they are all done, I will post the beautiful quilts.  I don’t think any of them will be named “Farmer’s Market” like the pattern.

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I finished my quilt from the pattern, “Living a Charmed Life” by Six Gables Designs.

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I used cotton and wool batting and quilted feathers galore!

What have you created with a charm pack? I’m thinking of all the various things I’ve made with charm packs….a new television episode of “A Quilter’s Touch?” …..stay tuned.

Hope you had a wonderful week sharing your quilting.

 

Linda

 

 

This Week (42) I… October 22, 2014

Filed under: classes,finished project,free motion quilting,guild talks,travel — inspiredlayerslinda @ 4:47 pm

…drove to Rhode Island to share my quilts and stories with the Ninigret Quilters. I stopped by the ocean and took a few photos before the talk.

WP_20141014_16_35_53_Pro I could even see Block Island in the distance.

Here’s some show and tell …..

WP_20141014_20_55_58_Pro WP_20141014_20_57_41_Pro WP_20141014_20_59_07_Pro WP_20141014_21_02_54_Pro WP_20141014_21_04_21_Pro WP_20141014_21_06_48_Pro WP_20141014_21_09_35_ProThe next day I taught a Doodle Workshop.  It was so much fun!  I will be updating my website soon to include this workshop. I appreciate all the quilters who left feeling a bit more confident to free motion quilt after a day of doodling.

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WP_20141020_13_12_57_Pro WP_20141020_13_13_22_Pro WP_20141020_13_15_05_Pro WP_20141020_13_10_16_ProI am sure new doodle designs will come from these!