A continuation of my “Back In The Saddle” post from the other day, here are a couple of other projects that I’ve finished in the last few months. The one above really should have gone at the head of “Back In The Saddle” since it is a cowboy themed quilt. I only had to purchase the border and binding fabric to make this one….so that made it free! Hahaha. It is going to be donated to be raffled in a scholarship fundraiser for some of the local kids. I named it “Happy Trails”. The back fabric is a print of cattle.
This one has been on the back burner for about 4 years, every since I purchased the pattern. I searched high and low for just the right bird fabric to go into the bird houses since I wanted a realistic feel to it rather than whimsical that the pattern called for. I finally found it when I was blessed to be able to go to the Houston Quilt Show nearly 3 years ago. All of the birds were in one panel, the perfect size and just what I was looking for. I tried to use prints of actual “building” materials, although the basketweaves are only good for building bird houses or bee skeeps, and I don’t know many people that actually use bricks to build bird houses, but realism does have its limits. When I went searching for the background fabric, I was aiming for cloudy skies, then ran across this cloudy sky fabric with mallards flying around…perfect! Not sure how visible it is in this photo. I never realized how difficult it was to find fabric that resemble flowers climbing on a trellis. I did the best I could with what I could find. I particularly like the brown, bare branches that reminded me of a princess under a spell sleeping in her castle and thorn bushes growing up the walls to keep the handsome prince from rescuing her. Okay, so I had to have some whimsy.
The last project is as yet unfinished. Every year I raffle off a custom made to order quilt to benefit one of the ministries that our church is involved in. This year’s winner was…wait for it… the PASTOR’S MOTHER! Really, the drawing wasn’t fixed, and she being a magnificent quilter in her own right, gave the prize to the pastor’s wife, who truly deserves this special treat for all that she does for everyone else. She picked out the center panel, and I purchased the other fabrics and then got her approval on the colors. I’m not going to let her see it any further than that until it is presented to her. Here is a photo of the progress so far.
She really wanted me to include some sort of a trellis pattern in the quilt, so the interwoven border is what I came up with. It took me two weeks to assemble it. What a royal pain! I only had a drawing from the internet that showed little squares representing the placement of the pieces, so had to figure it out from that. I am really proud of myself for being able to pull this off since math is a struggle for me, even with a calculator. Each piece of the puzzle was only two inches squared up, an inch and a half finished and included dozens of the dreaded Half-Square Triangles that I keep swearing I will never make again. If anything was out of order, it had to be torn out and redone, so I placed each itsy-bitsy piece in order on my design wall, and pieced each tiny row one row at a time, placing them back in position on the wall when finished. When it came to turning the corners and making it all come out perfectly, I was tearing my hair out. It took me two days to figure it out. Fortunately, I didn’t sew any rows together until I had them all assembled. The sides came out to be the perfect length, but I just couldn’t make the top and bottom work until I figured out to put a tiny strip of the yellow on either side of the panel to make it come out just right. What a challenge.
The blue strip on the left will be the next plain border, then I’m considering putting in a ribbon border made with the yellow, green and brown since it needs more brown. Once again, I only have a drawing to go by, so we’ll see. I intend to also make a square-in-a-square border with the leftover flowered stripe that is in the third border out and a diamond-in-a-square border with the diamonds pointing to the top and bottom. Then the last border will be a companion stripe that matches the panel with the flowers and bluebirds. The quilt will be a large queen when finished…if I survive the math.
This last photo is of the glorious Lady Banks roses that are giving their all in spite of the fact that my darling hubby butchered them in early January after I asked him not to. Just because they were bending the wire fence they are growing on to the ground was no excuse for pruning them at the wrong time of year. I thought there would be hardly any blossoms at all since they bloom on the previous year’s growth and only one time a year at that. What a pleasant surprise and now I suppose I can let him move back in from the doghouse…for now.