Monday, November 20, 2017

Quick Gifts

 Everyone needs a quick gift once in awhile - especially around the holidays!  Several months ago I had some leftover Island Batik fabric and decided to make some little zippered pouches.  I tend to shy away from projects with zippers, so thought these would give me some extra practice.  I found most of the patterns for free on the internet.


These little pouches went together quickly and they turned out well.  I hope you can have fun with some small gift projects.  They are fun and a great way to use up some of those lovely leftover fabrics.


Monday, October 30, 2017

Borders & Bindings Challenge - 2nd try

I had issues today with my photos not appearing on my blog post.  Please go back and check it out- it should be working now (hopefully!)
http://kauffmandesigns.blogspot.com/2017/10/borders-and-binding-island-batik.html

Borders and Binding Island Batik Challenge



The October challenge for the Island Batik Ambassadors was to make a quilt with Creative Borders and Bindings.  I decided to use this great 10" package of Elementz fabrics by designer Tammy Silvers, as well as a dark orange from the Island Batik Blenders and a yard of Elementz fabric in a lighter orange.





Aren't the colors yummy!  I fell in love with these fabrics just from how they were wrapped in the package.  Here is another close up






I loved the little strips of color and how they looked on the diagonal just as they were folded in the package.

Some of the fabrics remind me a bit of the packages of a fruit gum from years ago...
Image result for old juicy fruit gum

Knowing I wanted to cut the fabrics on the diagonal/bias, I knew I wanted to make the blocks of my project with paper piecing.  With paper piecing you can manage working with fabrics on the bias.  Kind of crazy to do a whole quilt this way, but it had the look I wanted and it worked out great.  I actually cut the 10" squares in half on the diagonal and continued to cut strips as I needed them on the diagonal.  I didn't need any the other half of the squares.  Those 10" square packs actually have a bit of fabric.  You can do a lot with them!

Here is my quilt called  Tutti Fruitti II.  I love the bright colors.  It could be a wall quilt or one for a table.  I think the colors will brighten my home this winter.





This whole quilt is actually made with different borders around a central block.  I just added border after border.  I thought of also doing a scrappy binding with leftover strips, but decided the quilt looked busy enough without it.





This fabric line was lots of fun to work with.  You might enjoy making a bright quilt this winter.  Look for Elementz by Island Batik at your local stores.




Thursday, October 26, 2017

Printed Fabric Hot Pads

Island Batik sent a panel of Leah Day's new fabric called Heart Medallions in the last Ambassador box.  My panel was a purple batik with heart medallion figures printed on top.  There were four prints on my panel.  I'm sorry I forgot to take a photo of the fabric before I jumped in and cut it up.  The fabric is Island Batik and comes in several colors.

Leah Day organized the latest Quilty Box and each box contains a couple yards of her Heart Medallion fabric.  If you aren't familiar with what Quilty Box is all about, you might want to click the link on Quilty Box or Leah Day's Blog to find out more about it.

I've been working on a quilt I hope to post on Monday, so I didn't want to take on another large project.  I decided to cut the prints into four separate pieces and to make hot pads out of them.  The medallions were just the right size for hot pads.


I used Insul-Bright from The Warm Company and a layer of 80/20 Warm batting for the inside and matched up a lovely purple batik from a past line for the back.  Machine quilting was easy by just quilting along the medallion designs.


Monday, October 2, 2017

Blog Hop Winner

The winner from the Back To School Blog Hop on my blog is VickiH.  The fabrics from the Sour Apple Collection are on the way.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Back to School Blog Hop - My Day

Today is my day for the Back to School Island Batik Ambassador Blog Hop.  The fabric I'm using for my project is the Sour Apple Collection.  This collection is a nice selection of teal blues, yellows, and an assortment of browns.  The prints range from dots, to eggs, apples, lemons, and even a print with roosters!  These fabrics are in the stores now.

Here is a sample that has squares of each fabric in the collection.


I looked at the fabrics a long time to decide how I would interpret the theme of Back to School. These fabrics have a warm "summery" feel to me.  It made me think of picnics, sunny days and the last days of summer.   When school approaches each year it always makes you want to make the MOST of the last days of summer.  One last picnic, picking the last of the garden, those last days to sit, relax and soak up the sun.

The quilt I made is an original design I call Summer Daze.  I used the word Daze instead of Days because hurrying around and doing all those last activities can put you in sort of a daze until you are all tired out, and ready to settle into school schedules and other Fall activities.


I used all but 5 of the fabrics from the collection in the quilt.  Below is a photo of all the fabrics I used, plus a bright green basic that is on the left.


There is only one more day for the blog hop, so be sure and look over the list below and go back to any blog post that you might have missed

                                                WEEK 1
Tuesday, September 5 – Country Dozen
Cheryl Lynch Quilts • Inspired Layers
Wednesday, September 6 – Bonsai
Little Bunny Quilts
Thursday, September 7 – Sakura
Masterpiece Quilting

WEEK 2

Monday, September 11 – Fresh Pick’ins
KISSed Quilts
Tuesday, September 12 – Lotus Blooms
Kathys Kwilts and More
Wednesday, September 13 – Olivera
Moose Stash Quilting • Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting
Thursday, September 14 – Rise & Shine
Den Syende Himmel • Sally’s Quilting Corner
Friday, September 15 – Diner Days
Ark Angel Creations • The Quilt Rambler

WEEK 3

Monday, September 18 – Seas the Day
KISSed Quilts • Whispers of Yore • Needle & Foot
Tuesday, September 19 – Vineyard
The Inquiring Quilter • Inchworm Fabrics
Wednesday, September 20 – Abalone
PamelaQuilts • Yellow Cat Quilts
Friday, September 22 – Captain’s Anchor
Purrfect Spots Designs • Beaquilter

WEEK 4

Tuesday, September 26 – Lobster Bake
Seams to be Sew
Wednesday, September 27 – Solstice
Bejeweled Quilts • heARTs Creations
Thursday, September 28 – Sour Apple
Seams Like a Dream • Kauffman Designs
Friday, September 29 – Zen
Lizard Creek Quilting • Quilt’n Party

Island Batik is giving away 3 Fat quarter Bundles from the Captains Anchor, Batiks Go Retro and the Abalone Collections.  Be sure to fill out their raffle copter to enter.

My giveaway is five 1/4 yards of the five fabrics on the Sour Apple Collection that I did not include in the quilt.

These are also beautiful and you can now see the whole collection.  Be sure to leave a comment on what is one of the last things you try to do in the fall before school starts.  USA residents only please.  Winner will be notified after the blog hop ends on Sept 30.  Be sure that I can reach you if you win.



Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Back to School Island Batik Blog Hop


This month is the Back to School blog hop with the Island Batik Ambassadors.  With our blog hop each Ambassador has made a project using the newest  fabrics by Island Batiks.  These fabrics are in the stores now, so you can go right out and purchase them now.   I've posted the days each Ambassador will be sharing, and what new fabric line they will be highlighting.

Island Batik is featuring a giveaway of 3 Fat Quarter Bundles.  Go to their website and enter their raffle copter to enter.  Each Ambassador is also featuring a giveaway, so be sure to visit each site for beautiful fabrics, great new projects, and lots of giveaways!

This blog hop started on the 4th of Sept- so be sure and go back and see the past posts.  I post near the end on Sept 28 so be sure and visit my site then!

WEEK 1

Tuesday, September 5 – Country Dozen
Cheryl Lynch Quilts • Inspired Layers
Wednesday, September 6 – Bonsai
Little Bunny Quilts
Thursday, September 7 – Sakura
Masterpiece Quilting

WEEK 2

Monday, September 11 – Fresh Pick’ins
KISSed Quilts
Tuesday, September 12 – Lotus Blooms
Kathys Kwilts and More
Wednesday, September 13 – Olivera
Moose Stash Quilting • Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting
Thursday, September 14 – Rise & Shine
Den Syende Himmel • Sally’s Quilting Corner
Friday, September 15 – Diner Days
Ark Angel Creations • The Quilt Rambler

WEEK 3

Monday, September 18 – Seas the Day
KISSed Quilts • Whispers of Yore • Needle & Foot
Tuesday, September 19 – Vineyard
The Inquiring Quilter • Inchworm Fabrics
Wednesday, September 20 – Abalone
PamelaQuilts • Yellow Cat Quilts
Friday, September 22 – Captain’s Anchor
Purrfect Spots Designs • Beaquilter

WEEK 4

Tuesday, September 26 – Lobster Bake
Seams to be Sew
Wednesday, September 27 – Solstice
Bejeweled Quilts • heARTs Creations
Thursday, September 28 – Sour Apple
Seams Like a Dream • Kauffman Designs
Friday, September 29 – Zen
Lizard Creek Quilting • Quilt’n Party

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Another "Green" batting

My last post was about some of the great bamboo battings, but I wanted to share another "green" batting with you.  This one is from Quilter's Dream Batting- it's their Quilter's Dream Green batting. This batting is literally GREEN!


This batting is made from recycled plastic bottles!  Isn't that fantastic!  It's 100% recycled polyester.  They list on the packaging how many bottles it takes to make each size batting.  For example - a  Queen size batting uses 20 bottles, a Twin batt takes 13 bottles and a crib takes 5.5 bottles.  I work at recycling as much as I can - so this gives me a little thrill to know I'm keeping bottles from the landfill and putting them to good use!

The batting does have a very light green color.  It is thin, but has a nice little bounce to the touch- very much like other poly battings.  It is carded, needlepunched for uniformity, strength and resiliency.  There is no scrim or resins, stitching can be 12" apart, it has little to no shrinkage and is wrinkle resistant.   It is good for both machine and hand stitching.  What isn't to like about this batting!

I quilted up another baby bib with this batting and I loved the loft in the quilting and it washed up wonderfully.


This may be a new favorite!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Exploring Bamboo Battings

Did you know that there are now several different bamboo battings on the market?  Bamboo battings have many wonderful qualities.  Bamboo is a renewable resource - when it is cut, it will regrow.   I'm all for renewable resources!  Bamboo also has anti-bacterial properties.  That makes it especially wonderful for children's quilts and projects.

I decided to try out several different bamboo battings and compare them for you.  I selected the following 6 battings from Fairfield, Quilter's Dream and Winline Textiles:

Fairfield Nature-Fil Batting -  50% Rayon from Bamboo and 50% Cerified Organic Cotton
Fairfield Fusi-Boo -  a blend of 20% rayon fiber made from bamboo, 50% cotton, 30% poly fiber.            This batting has a water soluble heat activated fusible resin, so there is no need to baste with this        batting
Quilter's Dream Orient - a blend of silk, bamboo, Tencel and cotton
Winline 50/50 Bamboo - a blend of bamboo and cotton
Winline 100% Bamboo - this batting is 4 oz of Bamboo
Winline's New 6 oz Bamboo - a slightly thicker and softer batting than the 100% Bamboo







I wanted to compare how each batting felt, what the loft was like and how it looked when quilted.  I decided to make a small baby bib out of each batting to test them out.  I also washed the bibs afterwards to see how they held up to washing.

I had a lot of fun making the bibs.  Each bib is out of a different fabric.  I added a fusible applique to each bib to see how the applique looked when quilted, and I quilted each bib differently - just for the fun of it!

Here are the first three bibs- these are before washing.  The pink one is with Fairfield Fusiboo, the second two colored quilt is with Quilter's Dream Orient and the blue one is with Fairfield Nature-Fil.

The second three quilts- the purple one is made with Winline 6 oz Bamboo,  the green one with Winline 50/50 Bamboo and the last yellow one is made with Winline 100% Bamboo.


How did the battings feel to the touch what was the recommended quilting and shrinkage :

Fairfield Nature- Fil  is needle punched and soft. 2-3% shrinkage.  Low loft.  Quilting distance up to 8".  They recommend machine quilting.
Fairfield Fusi-Boo is needle punched, thin and firm to the touch because of the resin, has an estimated 3% shrinkage.  Quilting distance 2-4".  You can hand and machine quilt this  It is really nice to be able to iron this batting to fabric so there is no basting needed.
     *  Fairfield says on it's packaging that a portion of the proceeds from the sale of these two battings      will be used to support ecological initiatives.
Quilter's Dream Orient -fibers are blended, carded, crosslapped and finely needlepunched- it is thin,  and very soft with quilting up to 8". Good for both hand and machine quilting. Minimal shrinkage.  It says it is Mid-loft, but it is very thin.
Winline 50/50 Bamboo  -soft with slight bumps due to the needle punching.  2-5% shrinkage on first wash.  Machine or hand quilt up to 8"apart..
Winline 100% Bamboo - softer feel than the 50/50, still with some bumps from the needle punching.  2-5% shrinkage on first wash, machine or hand quilting up to 8" apart
Winline's New 6 oz Bamboo- very soft-silky feel.  2-5% shrinkage on first wash, machine or hand quilting up to 4" apart.  Thickest of the three Winline battings
     *Winline recommends hand washing these bamboo quilts, but they can be machine washed and            dried on the delicate cycle.

How did they quilt and what did the loft look like?  It is hard to tell by the photos now nicely they quilted- so you're just going to have to take my word for it.  

The pink Fairfield Fusi-boo of course ironed very flat.  The quilting lays pretty flat on it and it stayed flat after washing.  It actually has a very nice feel when quilted and I felt worked really well for a baby bib which didn't need any "pouf" in the quilting.  This could be good for certain projects.

The two color/green bib with Quilter's Dream Orient quilted up very nice with a little loft in the quilting.  A very nice feel to the quilted project.

The blue bib with Fairfield Nature-Fill also quilted up very nice with some loft in the quilting.

The  purple bib with Winline 6 oz Bamboo quilted up nicely with some loft in the quilting.

The green bib with Winline 50/50 had a tiny bit of loft and feels a bit thinner- but again this works good in this project.

The yellow bib with Winline 100% Bamboo also quilted nicely.  Some loft and also feels thin, but very soft and drapable.

How did they wash up?  They all washed up well.  I put them all in the washer and dryer.  I did have to do a little ironing on them afterwards.  The Winline 6 oz didn't shrink, but looked a bit like it- and I have to admit, it may have been my fabric that shrunk on that one as I don't prewash my fabrics.   It wasn't very noticeable.  Judging by the size of the washed bibs, I don't think any of them shrunk noticeably- of course they are very small..

I was impressed by all of these Bamboo battings.  If I were to touch these and not know they were bamboo, I'm not sure I could tell them from other battings.  The Winline 6 oz Bamboo did have a silkier feel than the other battings.

I'm finding that a lot of battings today are very thin and don't have much loft so they don't show the quilting very well.  If I go to the bother of quilting a project- I like it to have a little loft so the thread doesn't just lay on top of the fabric.  So...I do like the battings that showed a bit more loft.  Because of this- my favorites of these 6 battings were:  Fairfield Nature-Fil, Quilter's Dream Orient and Winline 6 oz Bamboo.

Every batting whether it is cotton, poly or bamboo has its strengths and we all look for our favorites. When you are searching for a different batting- give a Bamboo batting a try.  I think you'll like them!








Monday, August 21, 2017

Free Patterns

Many of my patterns are offered free in various places online.  At  FreePatterns.com they offer these 23 patterns of mine free.  Maybe you can find one you'll enjoy!

Pastel Hearts Baby Quilt

Springtime Door Banner

Rainbow Scrappy flowers

Pathway to the Stars

Heartfelt Table Runner

Modern Comfort

Morning & Evening Star Mat

Nine Patch Christmas Scrap Quilt

Patches of Sunshine

Happy Scrappy Houses

Garden Stars

Friends Wall hanging

Fall Flourish

Christmas Lights Table Mat

Autumn Door Banner

Baby's Stars Quilt

Toad in a Puddle Table Mat

Winter  Door Banner

Chicken Place Mat & Runner

Plants in My Window

Summer Fixin's

Summer Door Banner

Springtime Table Mat

Enjoy!





Monday, August 14, 2017

August Island Batik Challenge- Quilt As You Go

The Challenge this month for all the Island Batik Ambassadors was to make something using the Quilt As You Go technique.  I had heard of this many years ago, but I was surprised as I looked into it for this challenge, that there are several different techniques now that are called Quilt As You Go.  It is interesting and you can pick and choose which works for you and your project.

I picked out a variety of bright Island Batiks to make a table runner.


I picked out a simple block that had either 3 or 4 pieces and printed out the templates.


This method is really basically stitch and flip.  You cut a backing square and batting square- layer therm and sew the pieces to the top.  Sew and flip, sew and flip.  I found I needed to pin the backing and batting to make sure it didn't slip while handling the block and sewing.




Here's a front and the back of one completed block.



You actually have your quilting all done unless you want to add more.  I added more quilting after the top was finished.

Lay out your blocks into rows


I added the sashing strips- one on top of a block and one on the bottom.


That block is sewn to the next block- by sewing the top sashing to the next block, but not the bottom sashing.  Turn the block over and you can fold over the back sashing and sew it down just like you sew a hem.  You are basically finishing each seam this way.  You sew the individual blocks together, then you can sew a whole row of blocks together the same way.

I don't mind doing some hand sewing like bindings, but this seemed like a lot of tedious sewing...


I did add some simple quilting once the top was together.  I used a lovely Blendable thread from Sulky (4126) that had primary colors for the quilting.  I used a Westalee 12 x 3" straight edge ruler and a 3.5"  Simple Circle ruler from Sew Steady for some of the quilting. These rulers are great and so quick and easy to use!



Once you have the ruler foot for your domestic machine you can use a range of quilting rulers.  I also used a curved ruler from Dusty Farrell called Flourish.  The ruler foot I have for my machine is a low shank foot so I have to use the thinner quilting rulers- 3mm thickness.  I was pleased to find out that Dusty Farrell also makes all his rulers in both sizes.  

Here is my finished runner (33" x 11") - front and back. It's very colorful!  




Close up of quilting.


You might want to give Quilting As You Go a try!