Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Another Finish and WW4

This week I finished a small Nine Patch Repro and made the 4th block in the Westering Women quiltalong. 


This is the little antique quilt that caught my eye on Pinterest. I loved its simplicity and the unbalanced 9-Patch set. I never would have thought to arrange the blocks this way.

And this is my version. The border fabric is what started it all. It measures 24-1/2" x 29" with 4-1/2" blocks and a 3-1/2" border. I wasn't going for an exact repro but tried to keep the fabrics fairly close in value and color while making substitutions along the way.

You know by now that I'm not a machine quilter but decided I better 'get movin' if I wanted to make a dent in my growing backlog of quilts needing to be quilted, lol! So I used Hobbs fusible batting and machine quilted it in a 1" crosshatch allover. This was my first time using Aurifil thread and I was really pleased with the result. 

This is the back before I sewed on the label.

Here's a detail . . .


 . . . and finally the label :)

I've always liked the Tree of Life pattern so when this month's Westering Women block was Lone Elm I finally had my chance to make itI'm using Barbara B.'s Alice's Scrapbag fabrics with a few others mixed in. Piecing was done in four sections and I only had a few rip-outs along the way, lol! 

And if you follow Barbara's Material Culture blog you'll see a NJ quilt on her most recent post Potted Plants with Reverse Applique. Scroll down to the pic of alternating red and green blocks with a vine border on the left. HQPNJ documented this quilt years ago and if you own a copy of our book, New Jersey Quilts, you can read all about it on page 15 :) The quilt is in the collection of the Hopewell Museum, Hopewell, NJ.   

Copyright 2016, Barbara Schaffer

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Patriots Path, Hooked Rug, Etc.

Patriots Path is done and I even put it in the washing machine with some color catchers :)

I started making it last October in Barb Vedder's Hex Vex class :) 

I had just enough America the Beautiful fabric for the side borders and edge triangles. I like the way it frames the hexies.

I couldn't make up my mind how to quilt it so placed it prominently in the hallway and every time I passed by I'd look at it hoping something would pop out at me.

And it did. One-half inch concentric hexagons seemed to be the answer. The backing fabric is from Barbara Brackman and Terry Clothier Thompson's Lewis & Clark line. It measures 18" x 24."

Last weekend we were at the cabin where my daughter and I went for a hike. This is the view looking east toward Vermont. 

We spotted these pretty Spring Beauties on the trail.


I had some time to work on my hooked rug. There is no pattern to follow for the background so make it up as I go.

Of course I had to stop at the thrift shop. I couldn't resist this pattern for a wool table runner. It was only 25-cents. I have lots of wool fabrics that I've been saving for the longest time. Maybe I could use some of them to make this piece :)

Have a great week! 

Copyright 2016, Barbara Schaffer

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Quilt Update

First, I want to thank you all for your concern, kind comments, and your suggestions :) I was definitely in a state of disbelief after my "quilt disaster." Here's what I decided to do.

You can see the color change in the upper left and the streak in the middle where the gold fabrics turned yellow when I used Color Run Remover.

The most noticeable change was this toile. The original color on the right bled through to the back when I spritzed it with water. I realize now that I should have put the quilt in the washing machine right then and there with some color catcher sheets. But I'm not fond of the laundered look so tried to treat it on my own with a small amount of water. And when that didn't work I used a little Color Run Remover. Big mistake!

It seeped into other parts of the quilt including the pillar print border and the binding.  


Becky in VA sent a link to an article by Vicki Welsh Save My Bleeding Quilt. Thank you, Becky! I decided a good soaking in the tub with Dawn Ultra Pure Essentials dishwashing liquid seemed to be the safest route to take to release any excess dyes. So I put the quilt in the tub with plastic lids and containers on top to keep it submerged. I let it soak for a total of 10 hours and changed the water after the first four even though there was no evidence of any excess dye. 

Then I rinsed the quilt in cold water and put it in the washing machine for one full cycle to get rid of any soap. It's hard to tell in this photo but this was the result after the soak. Maybe the colors aren't quite as bright as they were in the pre-soak stage but there's still a noticeable difference.

I then re-read the directions on the Carbona Color Run Remover box and had an a-ha moment. It became obvious that only the non-colorfast fabrics changed color while the colorfast ones weren't affected at all. So I thought . . . what if I put the quilt in the washing machine with a small amount of CRR to remove the excess color from those non-colorfast fabrics. That would solve my problem, right?

Not to worry! I didn't do that. But I did email Carbona to ask their opinion. This was their reply:

"The answer to your question is a definite No, sorry! The Color Run Remover will not give a more uniform look if you put the whole quilt in the washing machine."

So I've decided to let the quilt sit for a while before I try anything else. All I really want is for the gold fabrics to ultimately look like this one which is now yellow.

This was definitely a hard lesson learned but doesn't every quilt tell a story? 

Copyright 2016, Barbara Schaffer

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

What To Do??

I finished my Stars In A Time Warp last night and waited until this morning to remove the basting and spritz the blue quilting lines . . . 

I'd do about three rows at a time and then blot with a towel to remove any excess water.

And then it happened. Two of the reds began to bleed. This one came clean with two dye catchers and a bowl of water but . . . 

. . . the second one left this horrible stain on the back which didn't want to budge. So I did the unthinkable and mixed a little color remover in a pot and submerged the affected area of the quilt. Then I panicked when I realized some of the colors on the front were beginning to change. I put the whole quilt in the washing machine with two more dye catchers but it was too late.   

The stain came out on the back but the upper left portion of the quilt is now a different color.

And there is a streak where the color changed unevenly. What to do?? I considered throwing the quilt back in the machine with a small amount of color remover thinking that it may even out the rest . . . or, possibly overdying the entire quilt. 

Anyway, I quilted a 2" crosshatch over the entire quilt. I started last October. 


This is the back but must apologize for the poor photo. I still need to do a label but my heart wasn't in it today :-(

Copyright 2016, Barbara Schaffer 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Project Updates

Here are some of the projects I'm working on in various stages of completion. I tend to flit from one to the other except for the hour I spend nearly every evening quilting a large quilt.


Tumbler is a long-term project and I continue to cut pieces and add a row every now and then. It's one of my favorites. I'm to the point where I need to dig into my stash and cut some light-colored fabrics.

I do love working with scraps and have now made seven baskets. I think I'll stop at nine.

I really enjoyed appliqueing these circles which I'm calling Marbles. I sewed the 4" blocks together yesterday. Borders are next.


Sweet Gum Leaf is the third block in Barbara Brackman's Westering Women series. I contemplated hand-piecing but nixed that idea real fast :)

I saw this little quilt on Pinterest and you know the rest of the story, lol! 

I couldn't wait to get started so here's a glimpse of my repro :) The top is done and ready to be machine quilted.   


Oh, dear! Hexies were pre-empted by circles and the 9-patch repro. I must get back to sewing these together. There are 9 rows total.   


I'm hoping to finish quilting Stars In A Time Warp this weekend in which case the binding is ready and waiting :) 

Copyright 2015, Barbara Schaffer

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

My Bowtie Collection

First--it's a finish!

Bowtie Buddies is finished! Hooray! Barbie Vanderfleet-Martin from our guild long-arm quilted it for me and I love the way it turned out.

I've been experimenting with my photos now that I have a new computer but these all look a little dark to me even after being "enhanced." 

The back. 

 And the label with the mini-bowties :) So cute!

This is a little quilt I made in 1983 and finished in 1990. I wanted to try Prairie Points.

The back with those 'so identifiable' 70s fabrics!

A detail of the quilt I made for my granddaughter in 2003 . . . 

. . . and another of my grandson's quilt the same year. 

I quilted this top last fall and donated it to our historical society for a holiday fundraiser.

Uh-oh, there may be an orphan block quilt in my future.

And the real thing :)

Happy quilting!

Copyright 2015, Barbara Schaffer