Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A Hop, Skip and a Plane Ride

I'm back from a very sunny and lovely trip to Munich, which was almost perfect except for the masses of people in town for Oktoberfest (I wish it would have been Socktoberfest!!). I'm not big on crowds. But I got to meet my niece for the first time and that was incredible. I know childbirth is the most natural thing in the world, but seeing this little human being that is part of my sister - and therefore a part of me as well- was very moving. I get all choked up just thinking about her. Here she is with her new quilt:
Baby&Quilt
It was difficult to get a good picture of it, here it is a little wrinkled after the long plane ride.
HSJQuilt1
And a close up of the front and back:
HSJQuilt3
Size: 36"x45"
Pattern: I don't have the book so I came up with my own wonky shapes of Denyse Schmidt's 'A Hop, Skip and Jump' pattern from her book Denyse Schmidt Quilts. You can also download it for free here, just scroll down to Flea Market Fancy.
I used four different solids, all Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton, the rest is a mix of fabrics I purchase online and at my local quilt store. I was especially happy to find the musical kitties fabric which I used for the binding, both my sister and her husband are musicians. The batting is almost 100% warm&white cotton JoAnn's sells from the bolt. It's all machine pieced and quilted, and since the fancy walking foot I bought for exactly this purpose messed up my stitches, I used my regular foot which worked fine. This was my first quilt, and I'm glad I had no problems with it at all. Otherwise I wouldn't have wanted to try quilting again, but now I can't wait to make a big one for myself! I have to give lots of credit to The Modern Quilt Workshop by Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr, their quilting instructions worked really well for me and I followed their quick binding technique, which doesn't use bias strips but has you cut strips on the straight grain, thereby saving a lot of fabric.
I didn't think too much about how I wanted to quilt this project. It had to be quick and easy so I could finish it the weekend before leaving. I did a few figure eight shapes (the ones you see on many of Schmidt's quilts) on a practice swatch, they look really pretty, but took too long. I went with diagonal lines for simplicity but also because they add a little bit of movement. On a larger quilt, I would definitely take the time to either machine quilt very dense shapes if that's the look I'm going for, or I'll quilt by hand. For some reason I feel a real need to once quilt by hand, I just love the look of handquilted stitches and their soft tension.
I've got some knits to show you, but no photos yet. Sunset tonight is 6.54pm, maybe a few rays will stick around long enough for a little photoshoot.

36 comments:

Marie said...

it's gorgeous, and your niece seems to think so too. She's so cute!

Erin said...

Stunning quilt. And I totally get what you mean about your niece--I have two (and a nephew too) and the connection I feel to them is an amazing thing to have. So glad you got to spend time with yours.

Sassenach said...

First quilt? I can't wait to see what you do next!

What a great pattern for a baby quilt.

Angela said...

So cute Steph! Now that you're a "veteran" you can show me! =)

opportunityknits said...

The quilt is sweet, you did a great job on it. The photos of your cute niece examining your handiwork is simply precious.

yahaira said...

ok, your niece is just the cutest thing!
and the quilt is pretty as well ; )

glad you're back!

Veronique said...

Beautiful! And you picked the perfect colors for a little girl: pink, but not too precious.

jacqueline said...

OMG that quilt is just gorgeous.

welcome back! i am so happy that you are back in town and blogging again. i've missed you!

stefana said...

The quilt came out sooo well!
Congratulations!

claudine said...

Oh it looks great!! Your niece looks like she likes it too :) I love the colour combinations that you used.

villasukka said...

Beautiful!!!

Spirit said...

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Siow Chin said...

Lovely quilt! I've just basted mine and have yet to quilt it, just can't decide how to do it. And I ordered some Warm & White batting from Joann's too for my other quilts in the pipeline :).

LaBean said...

Your neice is beautiful!! And the quilt is too! She'll cherish it forever, I'm sure. See, now I wanna get my sewing machine fixed or something... Ugh.. I don't need more hobbies... (ok.. MAYBE I can squeeze sewing in, after all, how else would I make knit-bag linings, and steeks.. ;)

Stacey said...

That came out beautiful for a first quilt! Looks like your neice enjoyed it too!

blossom said...

what an awesome looking quilt!!! i love it. i'll check out the book you mentioned. glad to see you back.

KnittenKnots said...

It is SO BEAUTIFUL. What a wonderful gift. I really like the diagonal quilting.

Vanessa said...

oh yeah..i feel the same way when my sister had her first baby. it's so weird...i got all emotional about it eventhough i'm not a baby person. well, wait till i have my own :)
your quit turned out so beautiful...great job steph!

jen said...

What a precious girl. I'm sure your quilt made for her will be treasured for many many years.

Anonymous said...

Oh. It turned out lovely. And it compliments her very well.

Pip

www.pipandtom.com

Saltwater purls said...

Its beautiful....wow your niece will be so proud as she grows up to show off her own quilt!

vera said...

your quilt came out beautiful! i love the colours you chose. the pinks are gorgeous. :0) x

Krawuggl said...

Der ist aber schön geworden! Wenn du es nicht dazugeschrieben hättest, würde ich nie glauben, daß es dein erster war. Ich find auch den Rand so toll, den stell ich mir eigentlich am schwierigsten vor - und natürlich auch das verbinden von all den Teilen. Kurz gesagt, ich find ihn superschön, meinen ganz herzlichen Glückwunsch.
Und deine Nichte ist ja ein süßes kleines Ding, da kann ich deine Begeisterung aus ganzem Herzen verstehen.
Liebe Grüße und ein schönes Wochenende,
Suzi

Katie said...

The quilt is beautiful! What a lucky (and gorgeous) neice you have.

Carol said...

lovely! so pretty in pink. i especially like the ironing backing...what is your local quilt store, may i ask?

diana said...

Look at your sweet little niece! I bet she loves her gorgeous new blankie! It's beautiful.

theresa said...

Wow - the quilt is absolutely gorgeous, what a precious keepsake. You are a special aunt!!

cynic the lamb said...

Oh she is precious! So adorable! And she looks like she is appreciating your handiwork. I know exactly what you mean when you write about your niece being a part of you - very much the same way I feel about my nephew.
The quilt is gorgeous, by the way. Excellent job!

Kgoodrow said...

I was a wreck when my sister had my niece. It was so amazing to see her immediately after she'd been born. And to hold her when she was an itty bitty thing. Still makes me tear up a bit. BTW, the quilt is very beautiful

joujouka said...

What a lovely pattern for a baby quilt!! Congratulations!

Petra said...

I love your version of the quilt a lot better. It is just gorgeous!

Best wishes from Munich's suburbs ;-)
Petra

musta lammas said...

Pretty quilt, pretty baby. I like the quilt pattern very much!

Melissa said...

beautiful!

Melissa said...

sorry for the over zealous commenting there! blogger is driving me crazy this morning!

nonaKnits said...

What a fresh and beautiful quilt -- your niece will enjoy it for many years to come! I absolutely love Denyse Schmidt's sense of design and have often thought about making a knit version.

the Lady said...

That's a really cool quilt! I love those shapes - it must have been a lot of work... I made a quilt for my friend's baby a year ago, oh, the work, she was great!