Keep on Pedaling - A Finished T-Shirt Quilt

A three-in-one post to finish out the year in t-shirt quilts!


I made three quilts for one family, using shirts and cycling jersey from the patriarch who passed away this summer.


His shirts tell a story about a man who very involved in what I assume was his kids' high school sports, college alma mater, and cycling. {I googled the Death Ride. I can't make it up one mountain pass, much less FIVE!}


He also liked the Raiders and his church - there was a Serve Day shirt for every quilt.


Since I was listening to the Hamilton soundtrack as I finished these, I started thinking about "who lives, who dies, who tells your story."


When I'm feeling sentimental, I think about the part I play in helping people tell their story, and how honored I am that people let me do that.


And then I cried - which is not shocking because I cry at the end of the Hamilton soundtrack every time. {Spoiler alert - Hamilton dies!}

I got to tell sixteen stories this year - a college graduate, a fireman, a close friend, bunches of runners, and five in memory of people who passed away. Every one has meant so much to me. *sniffle* I love you all, thank you so much for trusting me with your stories! 


Goals for 2018

I'm coming off a fairly successful 2017 - 30 finished quilts {16 t-shirt quilts, 14 of my own} and a longarm purchase - so it's tempting to repeat the same goals as 2017.


Wildflower Log Cabin, made from scraps of a 2011 sampler

Focusing on UFOs helped me finish ten projects that were started from 2011-2016, and most of my small finishes were things that were hanging around for a year or more. But... It wasn't really fun to not really start anything new this year. Of the four new finished quilts, two were planned in 2016, and one was a commissioned quilt.


The Best of the PacNW was really the only brand new project of 2017.

Which kind of sucks, creatively - I didn't spend very much time pulling fabrics and planning out patterns and that kind of thing. I wasn't able to join Meadow Mist Designs' Mystery Quilt even though I knew the design was gorgeous. {She has a sneak peek option, which is awesome!} 

So that's what I want to change in 2018, and I've already made some small steps toward adding new projects back into my rotation. First, I bugged Jennie until she designed some new patterns just for me.  {Okay, maybe also for the rest of you. And check out her Tulip QAL!}

I joined a private Bee on Instagram, so I get to pull a variety of fabrics and try a new block every month. Hosting BOMs Away helps excuse "adding" another project like that. I may have collected an actual full month of Block of the Months now!


I'm going to do 18 in 2018, APQ's 12 UFOs, and Patchwork Times' 2018 UFO Challenge. But I'm lazy and there's no way I'm pulling down 12-18 boxes just to take a picture of each UFO. I'll add a monthly before/after picture. And I'm just going to work from the top down, rather than assigning a number and having to pull a box from the bottom just because it's number is up.

{My January OMG goal - definitely the Cars fabric box and a quilt for my nephew!}

I'm going to copy Confession of a Fabric Addict's Scrap Attack on the months that it interests me. {Double Wedding Ring does not. Using my bags of leftover HSTs does.} And again, I'm being lazy and not making my own plans.

I'm going to do 6&6 in 2018 - that way if something interests me throughout the year, I have an excuse to add it to the list. And since January is a "new project" month, I'm going to start Meadow Mist's mystery.

Not to mention the ever faithful t-shirt quilts, with two already waiting for the holiday season to finish up.

Oh, and I bought EQ to work on designing my own patterns. So THAT'S a pretty big goal!

BOMs Away - Rail Fence Christmas

Merry Christmas to all who are celebrating today! By the time this posts around midnight, I'll have been woken up by my youngest three times, probably. He woke me up on the 22nd at 5:30 am to ask about presents. Man, six year olds are so much fun this time of year! 

My in laws are here, but it's the end of the month, so I just have a short report on my leader/ender, the RWB rail fence.


48/192ish, moving right along. I did some of Celtic Solstice's HST as leader/enders this month, too, so that accounts for a bit fewer additions this month. But I also found a bag of RWB 1.5" scraps, so my bin is chock full of next month's work.

So did anyone else work on their BOM? Or a project broken into {slightly} more manageable monthly pieces? Or just a monthly report on a leader/ender project? Link up here or at What a Hoot! 

Since it's the holidays, we're carrying over the linky party from last week. If you did something new, go ahead and add it even if you linked last week!

Dr Who Epic - a Finished Quilt!

Another year, another 40th birthday quilt! This time it's for my {older} sister, who is a pretty giant nerd. Not that we're ashamed of nerds in our family - see Because Science, Minecraft 2 and Bad Boys of Minecraft...


So there's an awesome bag-maker on Instagram/Etsy named RockBabyScissors, and she has a massive Spoonflower Dr Who collection because her customers are nerds. I bought her scraps in a destash twice, which gave me a well-rounded collection of Dr Who fabric.


Add in the prints sold at Joann's and, and it becomes epic.


I did simple patchwork of 6.5" and 3.5" unfinished squares, fussy cutting out details and trying to use every bit possible. I think it ends up being about fifty different Dr Who prints, nothing used more than three times.


My original plan was to have the smaller four-patches make an X across the quilt, but it didn't look right as a square, so I scattered them around and used a 10x12 layout.


There's still just a hint of the X in the center of the quilt.


There was one piece that was too big to fussy cut, so I used it as the label. I figured it was a good one for that honor!


The binding is a blue stripe I've had in my stash forever - I'm finally down to the last fat quarter of it. The backing is {obviously} more Dr Who - flannel this time. The quilting is lazy freehand orange peels.



{And I have so many scraps of the scraps, I'm going to be selling custom ones in my shop!}

See also: Finish It Up FridayWhoop WhoopTGIFFNeedle & Thread ThursdayFinished or Not FridayShow Off SaturdayOne Monthly GoalFinish Along{list}

2017 in Review

A friend of mine asked me how many quilts I've made, and I realized I haven't really ever counted them up. I started a yearly count in 2013, but that was already five years into my quilt making. I've been going back and cleaning up old blog posts, but I'm still only in 2016, so I don't have a good count of the earlier days.

{I really need a social media intern, but my twelve-year-old only does YouTube...}

So a for-now-count, since 2013, I've made seventy-seven regular quilts {baby size and up} and forty-five t-shirt quilts. And that means it's just about time for a 50th t-shirt quilt celebration!  And possibly a 100th quilt celebration, if I can get a final count before I miss that milestone...

And that's not counting the minis and pillows and skirts and pouches and whatnot. Plus the Quilts of Valor tops, which in my chapter are quilted and bound by different people. Which begs the question - what actually counts as a finished quilt?


So anyway - this year! Meadow Mist Designs is asking us about our top five, and this year, it's pretty easy to pick. My sister's wedding guestbook, Because Science, The Best of the PacNW, Dr Who and Wildflower Log Cabin {which was recently gifted to a friend who "stole" my baby name - so it gets to be with an Eleanor Mae since I'll never actually have one.}

Three were brand-new quilts, but the other two were in progress for a couple of years, so it was extra nice to finally see them as finished quilts. And it's a reminder that quilts are usually nicer as finished items than as boxes of blocks. My nephew - who was two and a half by the time I finished his parents' wedding quilt - definitely agrees.


With that in mind {and also our military move weight limits in mind} I've been trying not to acquire as much fabric and new projects. Other than the expansion of my Dr Who stash, some Kona for the wedding and Minecraft quilts, and a couple yards for Because Science, the quilts of 2017 were made entirely from stash or UFO bins. And that's a pretty good feeling.

Always I Fought On / Bad Boys of Minecraft / Bearplane / California GirlCoquette CrackerFlying Four #2 / Pixelated HeartStrip FlannelToy Story


I'm not picking five favorite t-shirt quilts, because you're all my favorites and I love each and every one of you. So here's all sixteen - three of which {top right} are someone else's Christmas gifts and will be blogged after that.

Memoirs of an Undergrad / A Million Steps / Travel the Fifty / Keep On Pedaling - TBB / Nevertheless She Persisted / Bloomsday # 1Hope Is The Thing With Feathers / It All Started With A MouseThe Winner Is / Laura's T-Time / Coast To Coast Now RetiredFraternitas / Bloomsday #2It All Started With The Bling


And then there's all the other stuff from this year! Some minis, some pillow covers, a bunch of table runners, and a skirt. Again, almost all stash or UFOs. Maybe 2018 will finally be the year I clear out all the hexagon table runners!

Dog Sled Table Runner / Pink Mini / Shivaun Place Pillow / Christmas Skirt / Halloween Table Runner / Star PillowsFlower Mini / Bad Romance Table Runner / Modern Maples Table Runner / Make It Pink/Make It Blue Mini / FMQ Sampler Mini / Fourth of July Hexagons / Halloween HexagonDog Sled Pillows


And then there's the two Quilts of Valor tops donated this year. Which is kind of a poor showing - I'd like to make more in 2018. Goodness knows I have the RWB stash to do it with! I do have both a leader/ender and a block of the month project in progress, so 2018 will be better.

I also made and donated a quilt made from Porch Swing Quilts' Chain of Four pattern, but it will be featured in a QOV book, so they asked me to not post pictures. {Although you can find progress shots if you search my Quilts of Valor tag.} And even though it was made and I found out about the book in 2017, it will be published and on tour in 2018, and will finally be donated in 2019. So it'll make my "best of" list for a couple years!

Considering we moved from Washington to Oklahoma this summer, not a bad showing. And now with a longarm in my living room, I have no excuse for not finishing things. Except for those children who insist on dinner.