From My Carolina Home

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Eagle Panel Quilt of Valor

Continuing on with the Quilts of Valor for the Grand Strand Quilters, the next one is a panel with an eagle in the center surrounded with borders. The backing provided was a dark blue.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

Once again, the borders are a bit full, and I suspect that they were not measured. The cornerstone blocks are not straight.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

There is fullness in the middle too.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

Folding it up from the bottom, you can see how the middle of the quilt is smaller than the edges, indicating too much fabric in the borders.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

I removed it from the frame and steam pressed the entire quilt with the 50/50 solution I make of Best Press and water. I do use a spritz bottle, never put this solution in the iron itself. After some pulling and pressing, I was able to get the quilt a bit more squared up, with only a couple of problem areas left.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

Next is auditioning thread. The important consideration with thread this time was not only the color of the backing, but the thickness of the thread. In order to minimize the impact of the quilting on the eagle, I needed a thin thread that would not obscure the eagle’s face.  The blue Aurifil thread was perfect, and matched the backing.  Yes, I often quilt with Aurifil, both the top thread and the bobbin.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

I decided on the gentle swirl of this pantograph, as it was suggestive of clouds like on the panel.  Here is one of the many puckers that appeared on the side.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

You can see some puckering of the fabric due to the excess of border fabric at the bottom of this picture. I really didn’t like this, but I didn’t want to rip it out.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

I think the quilting looks good on the background sky of the panel.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

Some of the excess fabric on the border edges created fullness in the middle as I tried to keep the border seam lines straight.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

Once again, as I got to the bottom, the fullness and wonky corner became apparent.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

It seemed to be worse on the bottom blue border, as this much fullness was too much to work in.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

So, I made a pleat with the excess and stitched it down. I ended up doing four of these, one on each side and two on the bottom.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

Even so, there is still puckering in the bottom border.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

I know I harp on this a lot, but you can see what your longarmer has to go through when the borders are put on with the slap and sew method. I just wish I could get this message out to everyone. If you haven’t seen my tutorial on properly applied borders, click HERE to understand the difference between measuring and not measuring.

Puckers at the top of the picture too. Yes, these will be minimized with washing, but I don’t think these quilts are laundered prior to presentation.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

All done, I am not happy with the sides, but I did the best I could.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

I was pleased with the Aurifil thread for quilting, as it is thin and doesn’t detract from the eagle.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

Ready for binding, it was sent back to Myrtle Beach.

Quilt of Valor Eagle Panel

What are you working on today?



Main Crush Monday

Foodie Friday and Everything Else


Quilt of Valor- Stars and Bars

When I visited the Grand Strand Quilters in Myrtle Beach, I agreed to be a part of their drive to get their backlog of 150 QOV quilts quilted and delivered.  I came home with 10 to do, and pulled out the first bundle. I like what they have done here, each quilt is tied with the top, backing and batting, ready to go. It has a label on it saying who the piecer was, and who quilted it. There is more information here too, and I think it is great to have a way to track where quilts have gone.  This quilt is 68×88, and I think they all are close to that in size.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Opening it up and laying it over the longarm, the piecing has nice stars and bars, with a gold fabric (shown on the left) for backing. I was thrilled to see a nice quality, wide backing with no seams, lovely!

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

So I got to work and loaded it. It has just a bit of fullness here and there that I could see at the beginning.  I believe this is Warm and Natural batting.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

I auditioned several thread colors and settled on the golden beige polyester thread that has a bit of sheen. It went great with the metallic golden stars on the fabric.  Bottom Line was in the bobbin.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

I think it did well on the solid blue and solid red, as well as the prints.  I used a pantograph that has mostly curves to soften the hard edges and angles of the stars and bars in the piecing.  The pantograph is called Fascination by Lorien Quilting for Willow Leaf Studios, designed by Hermione Agee.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

As the quilting progressed, there were a couple of pieces that had more fullness than the others, and a bit of wrinkling showed up. This becomes more apparent as I was trying to keep the seams straight.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

So, out comes my new iron. It doesn’t do the shot of steam nearly as well as the old iron, but it will stay on for 30 minutes before shutting itself off.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

This is the same gold section after steaming with the solution of 50% Best Press and 50% water, and smoothing.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Then after quilting.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Here is a blue section after steaming….

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

then quilted. This works many times when there isn’t a lot of fullness, and the fabric is nice quality cotton.  It doesn’t work on batiks.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

The borders seem to be applied correctly, and quilted easily.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Checking the back, no problems, whew!!

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

Trimmed and ready for pickup.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

The pattern looks nice in either direction.

Quilt of Valor at From My Carolina Home

I rolled it up again with the bits of trimmed backing that could possibly be used for binding, added my name to the ‘quilted by’ line, and attached the paper to the quilt. So, one down, nine to go!

Are you doing any charity quilting?



Main Crush Monday

Love Laugh Quilt

Freemotion by the River

Finished or Not Friday

Thank Goodness It’s Finished Friday



Quilt of Valor custom

I finished up the quilting on this Quilt of Valor as I had a lot of time over the weekend. I did a lot of stitch in the ditch around all the blocks, and around the stars or spools inside the blocks. I got a little more feather practice, and put egg-and-dart in the sashing using a new stencil.  I still have some work to do to get the over-the-top feather backtracking to look good.

QOV Custom 10

I got some ruler practice in with this block, there is quite a bit of SID on this one too.

QOV Custom 11

I did a wavy line in the thin border on several blocks. The wavy line in the middle is a mistake, where the ruler slipped.

QOV Custom 9

I got in more practice with the triangles, attempting to use the continuous route I learned over the summer.

QOV custom trangle

I put a touch and go feather in the border of this block.

QOV custom touch feather with twist

Feather wreath with lots of SID in the little triangle section.  You can see the ribbon candy border here too.

QOV custom SID with feather wreath

I don’t think the chalk marker is that good for a precise design, the darts here aren’t consistent.

QOV custom egg dart

Here are the borders, I showed this in the WIP post, but the whole quilt is now done with ribbon candy in the inner border, and piano keys in the outer border.

QOV Custom 4

Overall, it is OK, I think. I am sure someone will appreciate the quilt, and hopefully not look too closely at the quilting. I am still an amateur, and I have lots of practice to do.


WIP Wednesday October 29

I went to five wonderful longarm classes at the AQS Show in Charlotte this past summer.  I have done a little practice of what I learned on the muslin pieces provided to us, but up to now I haven’t had a suitable quilt top to play with.  At the last meeting of the quilt club, the charity quilt chairperson gave me a Quilt of Valor to quilt.  This one looks like it is just made for a custom job, and I get to practice some of my new techniques.


Loaded on the frame, now I have to decide what to put in each block.



I started by doing some SID (stitch in the ditch) around the blocks, sashing, and border.  Then, I warmed up with two motifs I have done before – piano keys in the outer border, and ribbon candy in the narrow sashing.

QOV Custom 4

OK, deep breath, and get over my fear of marking! I am just terrified that the water soluable pen won’t come out. I have new chalk markers too, and I am a little less afraid of them. But, here goes, marked the curved lines using Jamie Wallen’s Quilter’s Apothecary curved ruler and went for it.


Yikes, lots of wobbles!!  I do need more practice, but you have to start somewhere! I’ll be working on this one for a few weeks around my day job.

What are you working on this week?


WIPWed   be6b3-linkybees


A New Variation on Disappearing Nine Patch

Did you ever think that there could be another variation on the Disappearing Nine Patch? Neither did I. But, in researching variations, I actually only found three that are repeated all over the internet. I wanted to do one just a bit different, without switching parts of two blocks, and not so orderly as the first variation I found. I researched my design until I was cross-eyed, looking at easily a thousand entries on various web searches.


Start with your basic nine patch block.


Cut in half both lengthwise and crosswise.


Now, here is the basic turn, where you take two opposite corners and turn them around 180 degrees.


And you get this –


Problem is I didn’t like those red wonky crosses. So I tried putting all the white squares in corners going around the block.


But I ended up with the same pattern, LOL!! Silly me. Next I looked at another variation I have seen a few times, very orderly, putting the white squares in the lower right corner.


And you get a very symmetrical look, with all the blocks having white cornerstones and the red becomes sashing.


But that wasn’t what I wanted either. So, I began playing around. I sewed the basic block center seams…


then I turned the bottom block around 180 degrees so both were oriented the same way.


Now I have a high-low cornerstone pattern and the red forms L-shapes. I liked it!! So, I laid them out with all of them going the same direction, and I still liked it.


I had to be a bit careful, as it was easy to get some turned the wrong way.


Oops, need to fix those center ones and the ones to the bottom right.


That’s better.  I added one blue border, and quilted it with a swirly design to add some curves to the very angular piecing pattern.


The backing and binding are made with a tiny star print that goes along with the patriotic theme.


Although this quilt could very easily be a Quilt of Valor, my plan is to use it in an upcoming kids quilt drive. I just think a little boy would like it.


Another simple and easy design for everyone to use and enjoy. Have fun quilting!!

Linking Up with Crazy Mom Quilts.

Tips and Tutorials Tuesday at Quilting JetGirl


QOV Finishes

It was a rainy weekend, so I used the time to finish up the quilting on two quilts of valor.  I used pantographs on both quilts.  The star quilt got a simple swirl.  It is a great panto because it can go two passes without having to advance the quilt.  This makes the quilting go nice and quick.

Qstar2 Qstar1 Qstar4 QOVfinish3

There was a hiccup in the middle of quilting, one of the sides of this star was completely loose and I caught the foot and needle under it, surprised me because I was going along so well!


I had to back up and carefully go over the open edge.  It looks bad because of the thread hiccup, but that’s the way it goes.  I should have frogged it out, but that would have been just as messy with dark thread on a light background, so I just left it.  Later I hand whipped the loose edge back down.

The backing is a wide 108″ navy blue mottled print.  I quilted with navy thread.  When the first one was done, I advanced the quilt and loaded the second one right next to the first.  You can see the edge of the first quilt in red just under the take up bar.  I used the same thread, so saved some time there too.


New panto was put on, one called Tiger Swirl.  It looks a little more masculine, and kind of reminds me of fireworks.

Qvalor3 Qvalor2 Qvalor1-1 QOVfinish6

I finished the binding on the star quilt on Sunday.

QOVfinish1 QOVfinish4 QOVfinish2

The spool quilt binding will be done this week.

QOVfinish7 QOVfinish5

Happy Quilting!!

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QOV Works in Progress

Wednesday was spent working on Quilts of Valor.  I had one group of stars that I put together at a work party with dark blue sashing, and I decided to add a red border.  The quilt was square, so I made the end borders just a smidgen bigger than the sides so it would work for a wheelchair lap quilt.

Valor11 Valor1

Then, remember this square from the ‘how to square up a block’ post?  I had 16 of these, so I added some solid blue blocks and arranged the pieced ones in an hourglass design.

Valor4 Valor2

Sewing them together went really fast with chain piecing.

Valor3 Valor5

Then I set them into rows of two big four-patch blocks.  The two left over will be a pillow.  I measured for the border of red.  Look how straight it is on the right side!  Then measured again for the other two borders.

Valor6 Valor8

If this is new to you, see the border tutorial at the top of the page.  I put on the remaining two borders and ironed the seams.

Valor7 Valor9

On the frame now is a wide navy blue backing so I can do both quilts.  I added the batting, and set the first one in place.


I’ll quilt it, then just roll down and float the second top next to it.  That will be this weekend’s project.

Happy Quilting!!