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Grove Mini Quilts

How do you feel about mini quilts? I love them. There’s something extra special and satisfying about making a mini, which is why I decided to add in a (literal) little bonus when giving my Grove pattern a refresh. With a new mini tree block included in the pattern, now you can make Grove Mini Quilts. Personally, I’ve already made two.

Mini Grove quilts . carolyn friedlander

There are many good things about a smaller format. Creatively, it’s a great way to try out a new color combination, print pairing or layout. There’s less pressure in terms of the time and material commitment. I find they always perk up a space without requiring a lot of space, and they make a thoughtful gift. If you aren’t into turning it into a quilt, you could always sew the smaller blocks into a bag, pillow, pincushion or other accessory too.

The new mini block conveniently required a new sample, which started off with a colorful dive into my scrap pile. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been finding comfort in color lately.

As I made the blocks, I threw them up on my wall, and I moved them around as I went. I find that I constantly simmer on layout while making blocks, and I really like that about the process. It’s very interactive.

Of course I ended up making more blocks than I needed, and so I divided them into two different quilts. They could have been sewn into one, but I liked the balance of having these two.

Mini Grove quilt . carolyn friedlander

Grove Mini Quilt #1

The blocks are made from a pretty wide mix of colors from spice to tangerine to mint and yellow, but I think the sashing really helps cement the color statement. It was a big decision, but I loved this gingham and the color tone the best.

After deciding on the sashing, I was a little indecisive about going bold or blendy with the binding, so I did a little bit of both! The black piece is leftover binding from my TP quilt, and I love how it adds an accent. This is definitely a case of being enticed by something lying around that I hadn’t put away yet. (Don’t need to worry about putting it away now!)

Mini Grove quilt . carolyn friedlander

I quilted all over with matchstick lines in the vertical direction. With there being all of the different colors and fabrics, I wanted the quilting to unify and add a dense texture.

Mini Grove quilt . carolyn friedlander

Grove Mini Quilt #2

The blue one is pretty cute–if I do say so. There’s no sashing, it’s just 4 blocks sewn together with a border, pretty simple.

Mini Grove quilt in blue . carolyn friedlander

I tried to do something a little different with the quilting on this one, but still similar in the sense that it is an even, overall, dense-ish texture. This time it’s a rectangular grid, and I used an electric blue thread. That detail is subtle but fun.

Mini Grove quilt in blue . carolyn friedlander
Mini Grove quilt in blue . carolyn friedlander

You’ll find the new mini block included in the new grove pattern, as well as the specifics on the layout (sashing, border, etc) for the first version shown above.

Take this in whatever direction you’re feeling!

Pattern: Grove Quilt

Fabric: Mostly mine, plus a Robert Kaufman Crawford Gingham

Mini Grove quilts . carolyn friedlander

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Hunt QAL #12 Check In.

Hunt QAL #12 Check In.

Month #12, we did it! It’s been a year of Hunt, and I appreciate you following along and joining in. At the start, I really just thought I’d make a quilt top by this point, but to my delight I have an almost half-quilted quilt! Yay!

hunt quilt along quilt . carolyn friedlander

Backing + Basting

To back up a bit, it’s been an eventful month–or it’s at least felt that way. Looking back on the calendar, I see that it hasn’t happened fast, but instead it’s been steady bits here and there that have added up. In my mind I know this to be true, but it’s easy to forget and so this is an encouraging reminder.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Having finished the quilt top middle of last month, I pulled backing options before the start of May. They sat in my studio taunting me until the 17th when I could spend an afternoon sewing them all together.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander
hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

After my backing was ready, I couldn’t wait to get it basted so I could start quilting it. The anticipation was killing me, and I used that energy to seize on some progress.

It’s worth noting that I had batting ready. Normally, I get to the basting step, and I’m like “oh, batting…” (hand to face emoji.) Glad there wasn’t anything slowing me down here.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

My quilting dream for this quilt was to big stitch hand quilt with contrasting sashiko threads. I’ve loved big stitch for years, and I’ve recently been exploring (and loving) using sashiko threads. It felt like the perfect thing for this project, and it’s been on my mind for months.

Supplies

hunt quilt along quilting supplies

Here’s a look at my current supply situation. Dark green thread (from here or here), my trusty Kai scissors, Olympus needles (although I have a heap of others to try, I’m just in such a groove with this one), a thimble situation I’m pleased with (more below), and light and dark marking tools. Yes, I’m marking.

hunt quilt along quilting supplies

On a completely superficial note, the thimble situation since my last tool discussion was driving me a little crazy. I LOVE the Clover flexible thimbles, but the pink/purple combo was driving me bonkers. It’s completely ridiculous, I know, but I couldn’t handle it. Looking for other options, I tried these, and love combining one for my index finger, with the Clover blue version on my thumb and then my usual thimble on my middle finger. Joy sparked.

Quilting

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

The quilting is coming along–like everything else–in bits and pieces that are adding up. It’s the most relaxing way to unwind at night and stitch away on a few rows. I’m doing straight lines, 3″ apart in different directions. If I get tired of going one way, I change it up. This suits my mood, and I think it suits the quilt. I also like that it’s a totally different approach than my previous versions (here and here).

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Any time I add hand quilting to my projects, I do it before any machine quilting. This flow works better for me, but it also means that I often think about machine quilting while I’m doing the hand quilting. I’ve had it in mind this whole time as a possibility, and I’ll see how I’m feeling about adding it–or not–when I get there. Today, I’m happy leaving it all hand quilted. It’s just so soft and homey.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Thinking ahead

I’ll continue chugging along, and hopefully I’ll get it quilted by the end of next month. I can’t even believe that I’m halfway through already. The binding is not a settled issue, but I’ll continue to ponder that while stitching away.

hunt quilt along . carolyn friedlander

Thank you!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for following along! How did you feel about this informal, year-long format? I hope that it felt like we were moving along together, and that the check ins provided some accountability without too much stress.

I know it helped me immensely. There’s no way I would have gotten this far or been able to keep myself on track otherwise. I eventually finish things, but it’s the extracurricular projects like this that so easily get pushed to the back burner without some means of accountability. All along I’ve been thinking about how nice it was to have monthly goals for this project, and I’m planning to continue to set a date each month to check in on my progress as this finishes up and with what I pick to work out next.

Pattern: Hunt quilt pattern

Fabrics: Mostly mine from many of my collections. Backing fabric is also mine plus Liberty of London, some sparkly linen and a Robert Kaufman gingham.

See all of the Hunt Quilt Along posts in the summary here!

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#FreshlyQuiltedTP, my TP quilt.

Have you been following along with the #FreshlyQuiltedTP quilt along that @elisabew and I are hosting? It wraps up this week, and I thought I’d share the progress on my own TP quilt.

TP quilt in progress . carolyn friedlander

Over the weekend I was able to get a lot done on my project. I sorted out my quilt top, got it quilted and now I just need to get the binding on there.

TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

To back up a bit, I was inspired to create a patterned background using some of my patterns (Everglade, Alturas and even Hearts). Many of my appliqué designs have reminded me at times of bathroom tiles, and so in a TP project like this, it seemed fitting!

patterned background . carolyn friedlander

I played with the scale of the designs and used different patterned fabrics to add another visual layer to the experience. I totally got carried away, and as a result I split my motifs into 2 different panels. One is now my TP project, and the other is something I might quilt up on its own. Or maybe I’ll let it get bigger, we’ll see!

pattern background quilts . carolyn friedlander

This project has been a welcome, creative challenge unrelated to anything else that I have going on. I think we all need a good break sometimes, and I hope that this TP quilt along has provided that for you too.

Here’s a look at where I’m planning to hang mine, which is right by my shower. It’s a super small space, but hopefully you get the idea. I normally hang different tea towels that I’ve collected there, and I think this quilt will be a good addition to the rotation.

#FreshlyQuiltedTP quilt . carolyn friedlander

A note on the quilting and construction

All of the TP and patterned background pieces are added via fusible, raw edge appliqué. It’s a speedy technique that can really make you feel like you are painting by numbers, but with fabric.

TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

I used mostly Steam A Seam Lite 2, as well as some Clover fusible that I had on hand. With any fusible product, I use extreme caution to not only keep my iron and ironing surface free of sticky gunk, but also to keep my machine and sewing needle clean.

quilting my TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

Years ago I quilted quilts for other people, and the fusible projects were usually the most stressful. Gummed-up needles are not only bad for stitching, but they can transfer the gunk into your machine. For this reason, I highly recommend cleaning your needle regularly if you are using anything fusible. When I quilted this, I cleaned my needle after every 2-4 passes with an eyeglass cleaner. You could use rubbing alcohol or something similar as well. It seems extreme, but it makes the experience much much easier.

quilted TP quilt . carolyn friedlander

The top is all trimmed up, and my binding is cut and prepped. Hopefully I can get it sewn on tonight.

quilted TP quilt with binding . carolyn friedlander

Want to join in?

If you’d like to join in, there are still a few days left and you can grab a digital pattern to get yourself going. We are using the Java House Quilt pattern, We’re On A Bigger Roll.

To enter your project, post a pic or some pics on instagram using the hashtag #FreshlyQuiltedTP through 5/15/20 so we can find it.

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