Baskets, Starflower & a Baby Quilt Beginning

Last year a lady in a Facebook group that I belong to showed little applique baskets that she was working on. They were so cute…and I believe that they were from the book “When the Cold Wind Blows”.  I didn’t want to buy the book to make that huge quilt, but I did find a PDF template online  of a basket and decided to add little circles to mine.

I remembered that in one of my older quilting books there was an antique basket quilt with the baskets in vertical rows.  They were pieced, not applique, but they had the same look and size. Perhaps I’d do a similar layout down the line.

I decided to make the applique baskets and nudged Karen in to this basket idea and HER quilt top is finished already.  ( HERE )   She’s faster than me :) I love the setting that she did with her applique border.

I, on the other hand,  just made a few per month throughout the year following the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month.  When I was up to 40 or so of them, I’d done a post showing them, and then after that I layed them all out and realized that most of them were light and bright and the reproduction sort of blocks were few.

So I decided to separate this in to two projects.  One will be with an eye towards a baby sized quilt…the lights…and for the other I want to focus on darker / reproduction style baskets, and perhaps use them in that vertical row setting that I’d liked in the book.

In the past, aside from getting Kona Snow, or quilt batting, or thread as needed, I’ve mostly purchased reproduction fabric or any fabrics on clearance in January.  I have had to buy 1/2 yards at the minimum and have never purchased fat quarters or charm squares, etc. That means that I have had nice bargains on a few fabrics once a year but not a lot of variety.

A few years ago Susan from DesertSky Quilts had kindly sent me a wonderful variety of small pieces of reproduction fabrics that she’d inheirited from a dear friend. I used many a piece of that in my Stars and Spools quilt. I was still using that fabric up in basket blocks such as this :

Susan offered to send more to me and I took her up on it! I sent the price of postage and she is cutting pieces as she finds the time. What a dear blogging quilter friend! :)  I didn’t have many big scraps left of the fabric that Susan had sent to me before, but I had enough for a few background squares and baskets.  The only other thing that I did was purchase a charm pack on clearance which I can use for baskets and starflowers.

I added a more joining pieces to the latest Starflower. I can insert it now to this other one but I may hold off until I make more colors. I think that the important thing is to keep up with the joining pieces on these since they are more tedious and less fun than picking out fabrics and creating the Starflower :)

Some young friends were gathering here the other day, meeting up prior to going to a local bar and restaurant to eat and drink and watch the Steelers game.  If you are a regular reader, you know that once I finish up the Botanical quilt it is going to a couple for their engagement / wedding gift.

Well, they were here and saw the progress ( hand quilting was done ) and then another friend was teasing that his third kid is on the way and where was HIS quilt :)   He’s one of my youngest sons’ best friends so I decided that I would make his quilt. They now know that the baby is a boy and he is due in July.

After the Botanical came out of the hoop I discovered that I did not have enough batting or even backing fabric to start another large quilt so it made sense to go ahead and do this baby quilt first. I do have enough batting and fabric to piece for that!

Red white and blue fabric purchased on clearance years ago for this July baby, who will be a boy.  I know that babies love bright colors.

I’ll add a 2 inch white border, then a strip with some yellow in it, then a wider border to add applique shapes to…there are lots of online resources for simple shapes for baby quilts. For a start, I printed out a few from Homemade Gifts Made Easy.

I like how she provided the shapes in different sizes. Everything there is for free. How kind.

I’ll add some things of my own and put other projects on the backburner for awhile so that I can get this done and ready for quilting.

The temperatures remain bitterly cold and we have more of this falling now to add to the 5 or 6 inches on the ground ( with solid ice underneath it )

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Weather Mystery & Some Blues

After an extended stretch of bitter cold temperatures, we went to 55 degrees on Wednesday and an amazing 66 degrees on Thursday here in southwestern PA.

This means enjoying the weather break but also dealing with snow and ice melting and a major muddy mess in the backyard for the dogs to track in…

On Thursday morning I checked the weather and saw a Winter Storm Warning. What?  We were going to 60 or above today…was this a glitch?

It was not. It was issued for FRIDAY at 1:00 p.m. for my county, lasting through Saturday.  Yet the local weather said 55 degrees and rain for Friday and no ice / sleet / snow until Friday evening.

Well there is a weather mystery going on here and I suppose I’ll discover what really happens in the next few days :)

Koopa says ” I am not worried. She’s stocked up on our dog food and there’s still a half box of treats for us on top of the fridge.”

Yes I am stocked up on food and essentials just in case we really do get the ice and snow. I’ll never forget a few years ago when the forecast was for 6 inches and we ended up with over 20…

As to sewing, the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color for the month of January is blue and here are some more blues that I have worked on.  ( And Koopa is a Bluenose Pit so he fits in here as well :)

An appliqued Airship Propeller block :

Another Starflower and Little Basket :

And two more Little Baskets :

I am quite happy to be done with the blues for the month. Going forward I’ll be happy to work on any color but blue :)  A collage from earlier posts :

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I’ll be linking up to the RSC18 Scrap Challenge at SoScrappy on Saturday.