Friday, July 20, 2012

My new toy!

I saw an iron being demonstrated in Costco the other day, and thought $119 was a bit much to spend, when I had one that worked perfectly fine.  Then I read this post by Melissa of Happy Quilting!  It's not the same iron, it's one step down but after reading her review, and going back to ask a bunch of questions, I came home with this:

Of course, it only comes in orange, which clashes a bit with my blue, hot pink and lime green accessories, but maybe I'll make a little wall hanging to pull it all together!

It weighs more and is bigger than my old iron, but as soon as you let go of the handle it has this little feet that pop out and lift it off the ironing board (see the gap under it).  This keeps it from scorching your fabric and your board, and you never have to lift it more than a millimetre to slide it over your seams.  Of course, a new iron meant I had to test it out (but not until my 3 things were done) so I tried my hand at some flying geese.

These are for my Just Takes 2 Red & White quilt.  I'm trying different methods as I've never really been successful at making FG's.  This is the foundation-pieced method (supplied with the pattern) but I'm not married to it.  I prefer Judy Niemeyer's foundation-piecing method with precut pieces of fabric, and I can't figure out what size to cut them for these blocks.  And then I would get everything turned the wrong way, so I was frogging (you know: rip it, rip it with the seam ripper) a lot. I got frustrated and put them aside to work on the solution this weekend.  I already have some ideas - as I was piecing this, I realized I could probably use my companion angle and EZ angle to make these, and use chain-piecing to speed up the process.  

I wasn't ready to stop playing with my new iron, so I pulled out some ancient Christmas fabric inherited from my mother and ironed the wrinkles out. That iron literally got the wrinkles out with one pass!  Then I made some snowballs for Katie Mae's snowball fight.  Mine are 6 1/2" unfinished, with 2" squares in the corner.  I'll make more as I dig through the stash to add to this:

This quilt is going to be a tribute to my Mom, who has been gone for 11 long years.  Her favourite holiday was Christmas, but because she had a wicked sense of humour, she loved to portray herself as a Grinch. She also loved the classic Christmas shows, and couldn't resist this shirt with her favourite Sesame Street character, either. She used to wear this T-shirt when her workplace tried to make them wear some t-shirts emblazoned with the latest catalog cover (she worked in customer service at Sears), much to the customers' delight.  I came across it when we were cleaning out her closet and after all these years, decided it was time to do something with it. 

 I bought some Grinch fabric (Robert Kaufman line), and I've pulled some of her old Christmas fabric scraps (some date back to the early 80's) out of the box.  I'll use mostly moderns and solids, but I want some of her scraps in it. I have an idea in my head, and have drafted an initial design and I'm going to work on it slowly, and let it percolate.  I'll make blocks in some basic finished sizes (i.e. 3", 6", 9", 12", etc) and wait until I have a good size collection before I actually put together the final design. 

What I've done so far: I cut the T-shirt apart preserving all the design.  I then backed the T-shirt with a very lightweight fusible interfacing to eliminate the stretchiness.   Because the T-shirt was a smaller size, the words on the bottom extended beyond the area where the armholes were.  I solved that by piecing some strips of wonky flying geese and inseting them, making a final block of 18 1/2" square.  This will be the centerpiece of the quilt. 

One of Grinch fabrics I bought was the book panel, and I'm going to make wonky log cabins from some of them, and maverick stars from some others.  I'd love to add some of the Peanuts characters fabric, but they have a lot of blue in them, while the Grinch fabrics don't. I may still find a way to incorporate at least a little bit.  This quilt doesn't have a time frame, so I can be patient!


  1. The Christmas quilt looks great so far! It'll be interesting to incorporate all your mother's fabrics and the Grinch fabrics. And I love the Peanut fabrics, so I hope some of that makes it in too!

  2. Thanks, Kate! I'm having fun designing it (in my head, at least!) I hope the final product will turn out the same.