Sunday, December 1, 2019

Welcoming December

Welcome December, season of hope!  After an unintended blog break during November, it's good to have that month in the rear-view mirror - enough said.  Some good came out of the last few weeks though, and here are two new finishes, just in time for the Christmas season!

First up, a Christmas gift for my grandson, since it was reported that he needed a new bed quilt.
I used a slightly size-altered version of Bonnie Hunter's Sticks and Stones free pattern.  "November Skies" is what I'm calling this one, since the overall colors remind me so much of a November landscape with only a hint of the earlier fall color remaining, and the predominantly gray skies we see around here in late fall.  Totally machine quilted, very simply with stitch-in-the-ditch and a grid through the blocks.  Once again I took measurements before and after:  original top 91x80; after quilting 89x78; and after being washed and dried 87 x 75 1/2 inches.  Lately rather than soaking and drying the Hobbs 80/20 cotton batting I've been just using the steam setting on the dryer to partially shrink and de-wrinkle the batting prior to layering and pinning.  Seeing a little more shrinkage this way, but I think the batting itself behaves much better and I'm not seeing as many thin places when it's laid out for pinning. 
One of those rare partially sunny mornings, about 20 degrees outside.

And a closer view.

Next up is our very own Christmas quilt!  After all these years hard to believe this is the first Christmas quilt I've made just for us.  Really happy with the way this one turned out.

This was begun in an, as it turns out, vain attempt to use up all the Christmas fabrics left in the bin.  I had seen a photo online last year of a similar quilt, but with no attribution or pattern available, so I drafted my own.
Used this tree stencil in two sizes for much of the quilting.

And "organic" holly leaves and berries between the stars.

I was able to use up all the remaining Christmasy flannels for the back and learned a valuable piece of information in the process - that being flannel and Aussie fur are natural magnets.  Yikes!

This photo was taken yesterday, before the nor'easter Ezekiel came to town, bringing with it a less than welcome accumulation of freezing rain, sleet, crunchy snow, more sleet, and on it goes.  Areas east of us are expecting 12-18 inches of snow on top of the ice.  Not a happy travel day, but a great day for sewing and catching up on some blog reading.  I hope the weather is better in your neck of the woods!


  1. What Aussie, (or man, woman or child) wouldn't want to snuggle into your oh-so-wonderful, flannel-lined Christmas quilt! It's a real beauty! And, I surely am smitten with "November Skies!" What a beautiful quilt! Wow!

    1. Problem is the Aussie leaves tons of loose fur on that flannel, whenever he's anywhere near it! And contrary to what we were told, Aussies do shed All.Year.Long. Thanks so much for your sweet comments.

  2. Beautiful Christmas quilt--such pretty colors hugs, Julierose

  3. So happy to hear from you again. Congratulations on these two wonderful finishes. I love the Christmas one and I have it on my to-do list from a long time ago. (Will I ever do that list?) November skies is the perfect name for that one. I'm sure grandchild will appreciate its warmth. Yes, weather is better than where you are but I'm not saying more ... too scared to jink it. ;^)

  4. Nice finishes, all the way around!

  5. Your Christmas quilt is so sharp and nice - congratulations - and what a nice boy quilt for your grandson. I've used that Sticks and Stones pattern many times - it's a good one. Bonnie is so generous.

  6. I love that star pattern and have used it several times as it is great with theme fabrics or plaids too! Your version turned out so pretty and very much a grand holiday quilt.
    I love the color combo for the grandson's quilt. It just says love and home to me. Super job on it.
    Hope all is improving on your end of the world....since the snow is probably keeping your house bound.

  7. Completing 2 beautiful quilts is something to make you very happy, I'm sure!! Love them both. I really like the Christmas quilt. I may need to think about making one like it some day. I still have plenty of Christmas fabric scraps left.

  8. Two great finishes. The first is a wonderful quilt for a guy, and the second is a good showcase for the Christmas fabrics.
    I wonder how many Christmas quilts we would have to make to truly "use up" the fabrics?

  9. I agree. Two wonderful finishes. Your grandson's is going to love his new quilt. I was amazed at how much it shrunk. Your Christmas quilt is beautiful and your quilting designs fit in perfectly. I've always loved that pattern. Your "leftovers" couldn't have been used up better. Funny, I've actually been trying to do the same thing last week during our blizzard. Must be a snow thing!

  10. I really, really like your grandsons quilt! Great job with it! I think making for the menfolk is especially challenging but you just made it look easy. Wonderful to get two finishes in these busy times too.:)

  11. Those are both beautiful finishes. I love the quilting design you created.

  12. Two great finishes! Interesting about the batting shrinkage. Love your Christmas quilt! I'm in that category of wanting to make a holiday quilt using all the scraps and samples I've collected over the years. Some day, lol!


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