Friday, September 04, 2009

i heart quilt alongs

Thanks a bunch for all the comments on the "where do you buy fabric" debate. I appreciate each and every comment...I read them all, yes, even those after the 200 mark. And don't you doubt it. :) It was so very interesting!

I've been working on several quilt alongs....I seem to be unable pass one up.
Anita at Bloomin' Workshop is hosting a reclaimed clothing quilt along. This is the stack of clothing that I started with.

Instead of donating our used clothing to a thrift shop, I have been slowly collecting fabrics that would be appropriate for quilt making. Yes, I'm trying my hand at making a quilt the old school way. I'm using fabric (of undetermined origin, no less!) for the background that came from my grandma's house.

The solids colored blocks are made from previously worn (sounds better than "old" doesn't it?) pants. The plaids are from shirts that my husband and son wore. The red one was a victim of an unfortunate mustard incident after church during a cook out. But there was still plenty usable fabric left for a few blocks. I am finding great satisfaction in repurposing these clothes.
It's not the easiest to work with the heavier materials. One thing that I have found is that I seem to have better success piecing with my walking foot. It allows me to sew a more exact 1/4" seam than my actual 1/4" piecing foot does. It's just a hair different, but when piecing stars, that hair really matters. Anyway, I have a recipient in mind for this quilt and the fact that it will be an old school quilt will be even better than if it was made from all quilt shop fabric, in his mind. Yay for that!

John is also hosting a wonky log cabin quilt along. He is doing a series of tutorials on his blog...I've learned a few new tips already and we are just getting started. By joining in, it is my goal to try to use up a bunch of my scraps, not to see how many quilts I could start in a year. :) (I had to leave my toes in the shot so I could add it to the toe catchers flickr group.)

I'm admitting defeat in Anina's geese in the forest quilt along. I'm making a very, very small version of it. Better finished than a few blocks floundering in a basket somewhere forever, right?
And finally, my one a day quilt along.
It's day 47. I have made 38 blocks. Gotta catch up!

48 comments:

Nancy said...

Great projects and wonderful results! Keep creating these treasures.

RosaMarĂ­a said...

wow!! you have many proyects on your desk!! i love those star blocks! i see the Anitas clothing quilt before and is really amazing!! love the red enamel too!!

Kristi said...

I have been working on collecting old jeans/pants from my husband and bother-in-law to make a picnic/beach blanket. My granny made some of them back when my mom was still in college and gifted them to my parents. They are still in great shape and are so handy. Plus I love the thought of the people that you love most have worn the fabric that's being used.

Brad said...

They are all very cute!

Mama Pea Quilts said...

I've been reading and enjoying your blog for some time now but this is my first time to comment.

Your quilt out of "recycled" fabrics really appeals to me. Talk about a quilt telling a story! If I didn't have so much fabric in my stash already that I've vowed to use up, I'd be sorting through our closets for clothing I could cut up right now.

Not only can I not find enough time for quilting, I can't even seem to find time to paint my toenails . . . love yours!

Magnolia Bay Quilts said...

Love all your projects, especially the star quilt with all the used clothing. That's going to be very nice!

Thimbleanna said...

Oh man, I can tell already that I'm going to love that star quilts. That's just about my all time favorite block pattern -- I can't wait to see your version!

LizA. said...

Have you tried moving your needle position just 1 or 2 clicks? I found it makes a BIG difference in how accurate my 1/4" foot is. Even with the single, small hole you can get away with 1 or 2 positions.

On homespuns, flannel and other looser weave, or well worn clothing/fabric starch is your best friend. It makes a world of difference in your accuracy with these types of fabric. I starch the fabric well before cutting anything out.

DeeRoo said...

I always forget about saving the old clothes for quilting. We have a really nice hospice thrift shop in town that loves getting all that stuff so I just always have a bag around waiting until it gets full to take over...now I need to remember that when I do take a bag I need to go inside and see if there are any vintage sheets to take off their hands!:)
I'm doing the Wonky too....I am learning so much from Dana, Amy and John!! It's great fun.

Sarah said...

I really love the blocks you made from the "previously worn" clothes...can't wait to see how the quilt turns out!

I made a quilt for my daughter from her baby clothes...we both treasure it. :)

Blue Is Bleu said...

Great projects! I love using the 'previously worn' clothing for blocks... I'll have to do that in the future! :)

Heleen said...

Love all the projects your working on. I have been collecting my husbands blouses for years to make a quilt to. I am going to check out John's blog. till next time.

RazakFamily said...

i LOVE using my husbands old work shirts for quilt squares! Gives it a little more meaning...
I love your squares, they're beautiful

Lee said...

I ws just on my way to the thrift store with a bunch of my husband's clothes. However, I did take out the cotton dress shirts first. One day I will make him a quilt with them...hopefully in this life time!!! but hey our closet is tidier and he cleaned it out himself with no nagging from me.

Kristin said...

Oh, I am in awe of your work.

And, huge thanks for the like to Quilt Dad. He is right here in my hometown.

Rory said...

We have a quilt my husband's grandmother made for him out of old jeans and overalls. It's not very cozy, really, but it's great for picnics, that denim really keeps away any dampness from the grass.

Robin (rsislandcrafts) said...

Love your star blocks.

Yes, smaller and finished is much better than tossed in a pile somewhere.

When I first started quilting, old clothes were the only fabric I had. I'm glad I was forced to start that way. Now we have quilts with the kids old clothes in them. I like pointing out different fabric and telling the kids the stories that go with it.

RusticOkie said...

I can't even express how much I love the look of the quilt blocks using the clothing. It just looks homey and loveable.

jaybird said...

38 blocks.. don't even ask how many i've made of round 1 during round 2.. its sad.

roseylittlethings said...

Love them all! I have saved a bunch of my hubbys striped work shirts, and a everyones old jeans now i know what to do with them:)

Cheryl Arkison said...

Uh oh, wait until I get mine sorted out!

Love the reclaimed clothes blocks. I plan to keep cotton favourites of the girls' to repurpose.

Kristine said...

How fun! I need to work on UFOs before starting new projects, though!

lera said...

I really think that repurposed clothing quilt is going be awesome. I like the idea. It reminds me of a "quilt" my grandmother made a few years ago. Instead of batting, though, she used old clothes, too. (What a hoot! And what a lumpy quilt.)

Jackie said...

Boy, you certainly have your projects cut out for you! Each one is different, but equally lovely! You go girl!

Renee said...

You've been busy!
I've been making star blocks just like yours from leftovers as I have them, although they aren't made from old clothes. No particular plan for the quilt but I've got 22 blocks already. Just counted and figured I had 1/2 as many.

Happy Quilt alongs ~ I'm still slacking on the 9 patch, but making progress, slow - but progress. :)

Have a super weekend!

carol said...

I thought you were going to take it easy??? You've been one busy lady again!!! Love all of it!!!

sunshine said...

Hey, you're second toes are longer than mine! Who knew ;)
Love to read your blog but am sometimes too intimidated to comment, especially if over 100 people already did so before me - how do you find the time to read everything?

Cheers,
Christine

Linda said...

LOve the stars, I think I'll have to try that technique one day! I love using repurposed fabrics, it adds more soul to the quilt, gives it a history!

dotti white said...

I think the quilt with repurposed items will be very nice. I really want to make a flying geese quilt with the pinks like you are working on...so sweet!

Journeying Five said...

i love all your current projects. the repurposing old clothes makes my heart light though...i love that kind of stuff! even more than the wonderland fabric i bought from moda, and i REALLY love that!

sulu-design said...

So, I didn't weigh in on where I get my quilting fabric (as you and I both know I don't quilt), but I have to say that I LOVE that you're using pre-loved pieces in some of your current projects. That, to me, is what quilting is all about. I loved the quilts we had growing up that my mother could point to and say, "That piece is from a dress I had as a little girl."

Cheryl said...

I love it all. I made a quilt out of golf pants (my first, and, so far, only, commission). It was fun but harder than I thought it would be. I saved a leg of each of the wool plaid ones and might try to make boys' scarves out of them.

And I really like your little flying geese! Cute!

Andi said...

Busy busy busy!!
I love them all but am especially enjoying the flying geese!
Andi :-)

pratima said...

The stars are beautiful. The flying geese are going to be a sweet little quilt :)
Have a lovely weekend!

Shari said...

I'm working on a quilt at the moment that is made of men's shirts that belonged to a deceased cousin of my husband's. I have to admit I've been frustrated by them as it is such a mix of fibres. In the end I had to stabilise them all. When I consider the size of my stash, if it wasn't for the important sentiment of giving this quilt to the widow, I would't bother. I must confess to having a couple of boxes of clothing tucked away 'just in case' - but it will be a while before I try it again.
Cheers!
PS I totally agree. Most quilts are made to be used and not meant to last forever and most will last a good 20 years...

heather said...

Your stars look GREAT! I've been saving the boys clothes now for about 6 months. Some day I'm going to do something with them. I've got a star quilt started already. I can't believe I haven't blogged about it yet. But I really like it so I don't want to share it quite yet! I need to start using more of my scraps!!!

Patricia said...

I've just separated a shirt off the donation pile to use in a quilt or pillow. It has a beatiful fabric...so I'm gonna use it as soon as possible.

Clair said...

I like your idea for used clothing...making the star blocks. Maybe that is what I will do with some of my old clothes.

Amy said...

I first fell in love with quilting because of the Gees' Bend exhibit that I saw in NYC in 1991. The artistry that came out of sheer necessity fascinated me. My favorite quilt that I've ever made is simple squares of Jake's baby clothes which I saved and saved for no particular reason and when I got pregnant with Quinn(nine years later) their purpose became clear. Of course this was nostalgia rather than need but I like to think of it as tradition.

Heather said...

I just bagged up a bunch of old shirts from my kids after our garage sale that didn't sell just for the purpose of making a quilt. Most are t-shirts with designs on the fronts and I didn't really want to just have big blocks. You have given me the idea to mix and match. Quilt blocks and t-shirt blocks. Hopefully I'll have them done by Christmas. :)

I am so far behind on the 9 patch quilt along I don't even want to think about it. :(

Cheryl said...

I have a pile of old shirts from my son and my hubby that have either been outgrown or oudated and I have saved them to be used and reclaimed to make into a quilt. I am off to check out the link you provided.
I also love the quilt on your bed, but didn't post a comment there as there were 158 comments. WOW!

bekhy said...

I love quilt alongs too! Bonnie Hunter's website totally got me into a thrifted shirt phase, and I must have made 15-20 baby quilts out of the 40 odd shirts I got at Goodwill. I have enjoyed your quilt alongs as well. And I agree with you that I get fabric where I find them, and sometimes that's at Joann's. And I totally agree with you about the humble beginnings of quilting. That's what I love about quilting: its utilitarian nature, yet still bringing beauty and joy into someone's life. Thanks for such a wonderfully fun blog!

Sherri said...

LOve everything...but especially the geese in the forest! What a terrific idea to make a smaller version!

Annalia Romero said...

I'm dying to see more of your spiderweb quilt! ....need tutorial...must start...another quilt....

Elisabeth said...

I love using clothes in quilts, I'm saving my boys shirts and once the youngest grows out of all of them, I'm doing a memory quilt with them to keep for myself! I love your Ohio star block and I'd love a tutorial or advice on them since my points didn't work the first time I tried one. Those fabrics look really nice and old fashioned in that pattern.

The Calico Cat said...

I love what you are doing with those shirts. (I have too much quilt shop fabric to be that frugal & my tax guy can make miracles out of my donations.) very masculine!

Rebekah said...

looks like you've got a lot of fun projects on your plate! I had to stop joining quilt alongs because I just don't have the time to get everything done...they are addicting though :)

Still have to finish that first nine patch quilt!

Anonymous said...

my favorite quilt comes was made from my dad's outgrown PJs 50 years ago! Awesome you are doing a quilt the old fashioned way.