8.21.2014

WIP report on Thursday

So yesterday I stayed home to sew, mainly because my car was getting new brakes and it gave me the perfect excuse to sew the day away. 

Earlier this week I started cutting out fabrics for a plus quilt. It's just one of those quilts I've always loved and finally got the urge to make it. 
This is what I started with. I laid it out yesterday morning in a scrappy fashion and it was okay. 
The thing was I liked it but I didn't love it... So in a moment of weakness (or pure genius, you decide) I changed up the layout entirely and shifted the colors from one to the next:
It was a pain to lay out (not gonna lie) and I had to cut up just a few more pieces to fit the open spaces, but I LOVE it!!!

It's gonna take me a bit to sew it together, but once I do, I'm planning on posting a tutorial! I looked online for one and all of the sizes were either too big or too small so I ended up doing my own thing. 

I'm having so much fun I just might make two! I may make the other one more traditionally with maybe all oranges (I have a thing for orange lately, I can't explain). I'm also thinking of going super crazy with a scrappy binding to match the colors going around the quilt... I'm thinking it will make me super bonkers, but after thinking of it, I don't think I can change my mind. 

So that's what I've been working on. Which layout do you prefer, the color shift or the scrappy version?

8.19.2014

Machine Quilting: B&W & Orange

Sometimes I just love the anticipation of actually seeing a quilt from the story I hear about it from the person that made it. This quilt definitely ranks high up on that list. It's so fun and bright and Kathy is just a doll, so I knew this was going to be fun.
 My favorite calls for long arm quilting are the conversations that start with something like "Now it's really bright and crazy". This quilt lives to to that no problem. The other fun element for this quilt was the pieced backing. Some of Kathy's friends were trying to talk her either into doing two quilts or one super awesome quilt. Well, this turned into a super awesome quilt.
 The main areas of the quilt were quilted in orange thread in a wave pattern to mimic one of the favorite prints in the black and white fabrics (you really can't see it here). We made the decision to play up the stars knowing the quilting wouldn't stand out anywhere else. Since the stars had an ombre effect, I used three different threads, red, orange and yellow, in the opposing direction of the stars to have even more fun. This way then the red stars have yellow thread, the lighter stars had the darker thread and the quilting stood out even more.
 Plus the geometric quilting in the stars is a complete contrast from the swirly waves that you probably still can't see quilted in this picture... Oh well. It looks really cool in person.
 And here's the back. This quilt was made for Kathy's son. She added his name to the bottom and used the leftover pieces from the front to make this awesome stripe on the back and framed it with an ombre fabric. This really could have been two quilts, but I think it's pretty neat as a front and a back.
You can see the quilting a ton better on the back and the stars stand out nicely.

Thanks, Kathy! You did a great job and I hope Kevin loves it! He's lucky to have an awesome Mom like you make a quilt like this one!

If you would like to know more information about my quilting services, click on the Machine Quilting Information tab at the top of the page!

8.15.2014

Studio Tour

So, since I've switched things up a bit, more and more quilters are coming to visit me at the studio to drop off their projects to be quilted and I thought it would be nice to give you all a tour and show you where to go.
 Here's the view of the house from the street. It's the second house south of 166 on 528 in Thompson. Really easy to find!
 It is a long drive, but no worries. It makes a great walk to get the mail!
 And when you're pulling up the drive you may be able to see the cows in the pasture next door.
 You can barely see them in this photo, but they're blending into the corn field and wood line. They're there I promise! So those are my neighbors.
 To get to the studio, pull up the drive along the house (it's on the left side). You can pull right to the back of the house.
 Just off the patio you'll see this door and that's where the studio is!
 Just come on in and I'll be there to greet you. Now, I'm going to try to be here quilting most weekdays from 10-5 ish, but I will not be here everyday. Please call or e-mail me to set up an appointment to meet. Typically if I'm not here I'll be at my home in Madison sewing like a maniac.
Then when you walk in, this is what you'll see! I've got the blinds drawn to aid in what I'm working on and this is actually a different angle that what you'll see, but I can't show you what's on the machine just yet, so this view will have to do. This is my other office and I actually need to get ready to go there now.

Thank you all for understanding the change of direction my little business has gone in. It's really helped me to relax and breathe and for those inquiring minds - no I still haven't taken a day off yet. Most of the recent days I've worked have been more creative and less stress, so it's okay. Maybe this weekend, but I don't know. I've got a nice stack of fabrics calling my name begging to be turned into a quilt!

So, come on out and see me if you can! I've also been toying with the idea of a quilting "workshop" to have a few people at a time come out to the machine and see the set up. I could show you a few things and let you try your hand at a bit of quilting. More or less to get awareness out there of what I really do and how the quilting process works. Anyone interested?

8.13.2014

New Page for Quilting!!!

I'm still working on it, this page is going to be a constantly evolving process with new information added all the time, but I think it's good enough to share right now.

If you look at the tabs at the top of this page (if on desktop) or in the page options (in mobile viewer) you'll see a new page just for Machine Quilting Information.

This page has links to Pinterest boards with galleries of quilting that I have done including pricing options for each type of quilting. Also, you will find information about how to contact me, what to prepare before giving me a quilt to work on and other options.

Please check it out and let me know if you have any other questions. I just realized I forgot to put my turnaround time on there (ooooppps) but I can tell you here. I am currently running about 4-6 weeks out. Free motion edge to edge designs will be on the shorter end of that spectrum with custom quilts taking a bit longer.

However, I am a HUGE fan of planning ahead and Christmas is in the not-so-distant future... If you know you are working on a project and would like to get on the schedule to have it ready to go on the machine when you finish it, please contact me and I'd love to work with you on it.

I never know how many quilts could be heading my way, but in my history I've typically run anywhere from 3-8 weeks out. Around the holidays it gets a bit hectic, so please plan ahead.

With that in mind, I will state it here and now - The cutoff this year for guaranteed Christmas delivery quilts is Friday, November 7th (but subject to change). 

Please, check out the page and the Pinterest boards and contact me if you have any questions. Thanks again, I wouldn't be able to call this my job without all of you! I'll be back later this week with more awesome quilt pictures to show you!

8.12.2014

Machine Quilting: Tree of Life

As promised, here's the big sister to the quilt I showed you yesterday:
 Anne was on a roll and made this larger Tree of Life quilt to switch out with her Jinny Beyer quilt that hangs in her living room. As in true Anne style, it's colorful and full of pink. I quilted this one similarly to the smaller version she made, but there are a few subtle differences between the two quilts, so I made a few adjustments.
 I quilted the leaves and most of the borders and backgrounds the same-ish. Since the pieces were bigger, I had to fill it in a bit in the leaves. Plus I did straight lines in the trunk of this tree since it was so large...
 I changed up the one border and mimicked the design I did in the center leaves so it all tied together.
As before, you can see all of the different areas on the back of the quilt and that makes me happy. This quilt was so much fun and I think I like the colors in it the most. It's such a bright and fun quilt, you can't help but smile after seeing it.

Thanks again, Anne! You did an amazing job as always which makes my job that much more fun!

8.11.2014

Machine Quilting: Tree of Life Mini

Well, this isn't a true mini, but it's small, so that's got to count for something!
 Anne has this amazing ability to play with color and if you couldn't tell, she LOVES pink! I couldn't wait to play with this quilt after seeing the vibrancy of the colors.
 I used some back & forth lines with swirls and pebbles to soften the overall appearance of the quilt and give it texture without taking away from the tree. Then I used two different types of quilting in the "leaves". Just a little something to add interest and break up the individual pieces.
 This quilt was so much fun and so cheery!
Here's a look at the back, I try to keep in mind with quilts like this to emphasize the different areas so when you see the back of the quilt, there's no denying what is what. Here you can see the tree leaves and the trunk with some of the borders surrounding it.

Anne also made another version of this quilt that I will be showing tomorrow. Come back then to see the big sister to this quilt! Thanks, Anne! I always have so much fun with your quilts!

8.07.2014

Machine Quilting: Glacier Star #?

I've honestly quilted so many of these I've lost count. Sorry. But still I try to quilt each one a little differently than the others and it's really easy to do with this pattern because each person colors the various pieces differently or emphasizes a different part of the quilt. It just adds to the personality of each person that made this quilt and I only hope that I can help to emphasize that personality and give the quilt the same dedication and attention as the person that made it.
 Anne made this quilt and in the process she started it, changed it up, redid parts of it, and she couldn't be happier with the results. My instructions were to quilt it "over the top" and she added she really liked pebbling. I always ask each customer before I quilt one of these quilts which part are they drawn to the most. Sometimes it's the feathered star, sometimes it's the flying geese, for Anne it was the center star. With all of that in mind I got to work.
 Now as I mentioned how everyone colors this quilt differently, Anne was the first person in the extension sunbursts to use the same background fabric for all of it. I was a bit perplexed on how to tackle this area. Normally it's anywhere from 2-3 colors so I have barriers and defined edges. Not with this one!
 To keep the colors popping (it's so much more vibrant in person) I kept the quilting in the background of the flying geese and let the colors shine.
 Here's a hint of that pebbled center. Once again I left the flying geese alone so they popped out against the dense quilting.
 I've been playing with rulers more and more and added in some geometric quilting into the lone star portion of the quilt to break up the more organic quilting designs and define this area.
 Some areas are similar to other quilts I've done in the past and others are new, but my main goal with any of these quilts is to make it all work together.
 Again I played with straight simple lines to mimic the designs in the lone star and set this center star apart from all of the pebbling that surrounds it.
 I can't even begin to tell you how many bobbins of thread went into this quilt. With this grunge green for the backing, it really shows off the quilting well. Here's a bit of the center...
 Here you can see some of the New York beauty blocks, the flying geese borders, the lone star. I love how you can see the different areas and know what is what by looking at the back. I would show you the whole back, but this quilt was massive and I just couldn't get a detailed shot that large.
 Here's the back of one of the extensions. So as you can see, this quilt was jam packed with swirls and feathers and lines and pebbles and fun! I had a bunch of fun planning this quilt. I'm not going to lie, it was a challenge, but I'm up for a good challenge from time to time. :)
Now, as I mentioned before, I went through a ton of thread. Actually when I finished the quilt, this was all the thread I had left on this cone for the bobbin... It's amazing how heavy a quilt can be after it's densely quilted which makes no sense because thread doesn't weigh that much.

Anywho, thanks to Anne for letting me play with your quilt! I know she loved it and I couldn't be happier knowing I have a happy customer.

If you have a quilt you'd like me to finish for you or give you a quote, please e-mail me at rubybluequilts (at) gmail (dot) com. I'm currently running about 4-6 weeks out (possibly a little less for all over designs) and I'd love to quilt for you!
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