Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Legend of Zelda finished quilt top!!!

And....We...Did it!!!!!!
We finally, after 8 long months, have finished our Legend of Zelda quilt top. We have it sent off to the quilter now with a heartfelt plea, begging her to take good care of it and work her magical quilting skills. It was hard to turn it over to someone else to finish it off, but I have been assured we deposited it in good hands. The lady who is quilting it was pretty impressed with what we've done. She has never seen a quilt like it before.

In this picture you can get a sneak peak of the fabric my son chose for the back of it. It has Link with his sword and shield and horse, and while it doesn't match the top perfectly, it's going be pretty awesome!
So, I wanted to share some final thoughts on this project:
1- Linda's pattern is awesome! I would have paid money for it if she didn't offer it free. Her instructions were very clear and easy to follow and it all came together so well.
2- Don't be afraid to use some fun fabric and change up the colors. We love the subtle patterns and vibrant colors of the fabric we used!
3-Use gray thread! Linda suggests using white thread so it doesn't shadow through on the white parts, but there are far more black parts to this quilt than white. I used white thread at first and there are some places where the white shows through on the black. Once I switched to gray it worked great everywhere.
4-Don't skip the first step of making the ironing grid to lay the pieces out on! That part is super time consuming, but worth it. It doesn't have to be expensive though. I think I mentioned in a previous post that I  used duck cloth (that I got for cheap out of a remnant bin) on top of my card table, and it worked great! The only burn mark we got on the card table was when someone plugged in the iron and left it laying on the fabric. We have a nice iron burn mark on the card table now for some happy memories.
5-If you are curious about the final cost of this project (that's always something I like to know) I will try to break it down for you, although I didn't keep as good of track as I wish I would have.
I bought a bolt of 20 yards of interfacing from walmart.com. That was about $20
The June Tailor slotted ruler (almost a necessity for this project) was gifted to me by my friend, but goes for $30-$50.
2 yards of the green I used $10 (it was $5 a yard at Walmart. Walmart is all we've got in my small town! :(
1 yard red fabric $5
Some fat quarters for other colors, about $10
The rest of the fabric for my front was either from my stash or gifted to me, but if I had to have bought it it would have been probably another $40-50 (also included in this would be the cost of needles, thread, and a new blade for my rotary cutter).
The fabric for the back was about $50 with a coupon from Joann's
Cost of getting it quilted by someone with a long arm will be about $65 (but could be much higher if I wanted cotton batting or a specific design. As it is I chose polyester batting and asked her to just do random swirls)
I will make my own binding using fabric from my stash.
Total cost=
$20+$50+$10+$5+$10+$40+$50+$65=$250
So the cost will be pretty variable depending on what you already have. I think it's important for people to realize how costly making a quilt like this can be though! It's not cheap for sure.

And I think that's all folks! This has been a super fun project. I can't wait to see how it turns out after being quilted and bound.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

And we have our Link!

So far we have stuck to Linda's pattern pretty closely making only minor changes with colors. However, we knew we wanted to make Link a little different. We wanted his sword showing (because to a 7 year old boy, what's cooler than a sword being swung!), and my son also of course wanted a blue Link, which is totally legit and true to the game.
Changing up the pattern required some mental gymnastics for this tired mom brain, but ultimately we figured it out. With Linda's Link she made him double size, but with our sword swinging Link we weren't going to be able to make him double size. So I figured out that her pattern for Link had 4 blocks that were each 15x15 squares. So that's a total of a 30x30 block. Our sword Link was 27 blocks wide by about 12 or 13 tall. So he was too short. We didn't want to fill above him with empty space, so we created our own pattern for the hearts.
So, Link is 27 blocks himself and then 2 rows of black behind him and one row at the tip of his sword. Above him and below him I did a 2 1/2 inch strip of black (I was getting awfully tired of cutting out tiny squares!) and then on either side of the hearts there is about a 4 inch panel of black. I just need to add one more strip of black above the hearts and then i can finish sewing the blocks all together and my top will be complete (except for the border on the outside).
Whew! What a huge project this has been.
Hopefully you can expect a post pretty soon with a complete picture of the top along with my final thoughts and words of wisdom that I've learned from this project.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

the triforce and the missing Link

We are moving along on this awesome quilt! Both my son and I are getting really excited as we sew blocks together and see the progress.
I was pretty nervous about the triforce block because the directions sounded all complicated, but to my utter relief it was the easiest block yet. I did not even need to use any special angles for cutting the triangles, they were just rectangles that I marked the middle of and then used a straight edge to cut it to each corner. It turned out beautifully!
I just sewed these two sections together today, but next week I am going to have to unpick them. The green section is slightly longer than the black section, and I thought I would just add a strip of black there by the wizzrobe, but I realized that the triforce is not cenered over Zelda so I really need to add the black strip to the side by the darknut. I asked my husband and he said he doesn't even notice, but I do and I know it will forever bug me if I don't fix it now. Ugh! I am getting lazy and should have known better than to just try to sew them together without measuring and planning first.
Speaking of planning, we have something different planned for the Link block than what Linda did with hers. It's a surprise though! I can't wait to show you all what we are doing. Here's to hoping it actually works out...

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Princess Zelda and the Wizzrobe

I got two more blocks done! Princess Zelda:
And the Wizzrobe, which I don't have a picture of. All I have left to do is the triforce (which I'm a little nervous about since it involves triangles cut at special angles and other geometry), and Link. So we are planning to change up Link a little bit and add some things. We'll see how it all goes, but it feels so good to have an end in sight! Hopefully we can get this quilt on the bed before winter is over.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Legend of Zelda Quilt

I have a son who likes everything his dad likes. This includes the Legend of Zelda! As Christmas was approaching last year I thought it would be amazing to surprise him with a quilt for his bed. I turned to pinterest and found some amazing Legend of Zelda quilts out there. People are so creative! I originally wanted to take some ideas and then do my own thing, but when it all came down to it, this pattern from quiltinglinda.com was just what I was looking for and has amazing instructions, and it's FREE. Why reinvent the wheel?
So, now that I knew what I wanted, it was time to get started. However I began to realize how hard it was going to be to hide a project of this size from my little guy. I would have to only work on it while he wasn't around and always be cleaning up after myself. Honestly, it may not have been that hard to do it right under his nose. He's a typical boy and doesn't usually pay much attention to my craft projects, but I got to thinking how much he might enjoy helping me with it. So, I enlisted his help and he was thrilled! We have had so much fun doing this quilt together!
For starters I followed Linda's instructions on how to make a grid and pressing board. This was time consuming, but definitely a must for this quilt. Actually, all I did was use a piece of duck cloth and then clamp it to the top of an old card table using cheap wood clamps. I iron right on top of this. I'm not sure what it's doing to the table underneath, but I'm not too concerned about it!

So this is what we do. I cut the squares for the quilt, then my son lays them out on the grid. Then I straighten them out and iron them on. Then I sew it all up and we have our block!
This one is still our favorite block.
When I was planning out the quilt I called up my good friend and quilting mentor. She was so excited for me to be making this quilt she bought me the June Taylor tool thingy that makes cutting the squares a breeze and mailed it to me along with a bunch of beautiful fat quarters. She has such amazing taste for colors. I am loving how vibrant and fun this quilt is!
Basically I am using the fat quarters she sent me, along with colors from my stash. Then when I need a new color I run to the store and buy what I need. And here are the blocks we have completed! I am still veering off a bit to do my own thing, but mostly sticking to Linda's pattern.
Before I started this quilt I saw some like it for sale on Etsy for $350 or more. I would like to say that people who are selling it for that much are short changing themselves! The amount of work that goes in to this quilt is worth so much more than that! It is worth it for the bonding I've done with my son though. I hope he always remembers the fun we are having doing this project together.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Baby Heart Quilt and Super Cheap DIY Quilt Frames

I love these simple heart blocks and they were just perfect for a baby girl due around Valentines day
Here is the finished quilt top:
I was in a hurry to get the quilt done so while I would have rather done something other than tie it, tying was the fastest option so that's what I did.
Here are my DIY quilt frames that I put together from things around my house. I actually got the idea from the friend I made this blanket for.
I have one of those old kitchen tables that pulls apart for putting leaves into so I just pulled it apart until my quilt fit inside. Then all you need is:
-Scrap wood (1x2's or 1/3's)
-squeeze clamps (97 cents at Walmart and I will use them for woodworking)
-pushpins
I laid the wood out on my floor first and clamped it to about the size of the quilt. Then I stretched the quilt onto it, securing it with push pins. I didn't think to take pictures, but here it is from the back after I finished tying the quilt:
Then I lifted the whole thing onto my table and adjusted the opening in the table to the right size and secured the clamps one at a time to my wooden frame and the table:
Make sense? Not bad for pretty much free! I usually borrow frames from someone, but couldn't get ahold of anyone and like I said I was in a hurry!
So here is the finished quilt:
Do you ever feel slightly ill, or develop a strange looking rash so you immediately turn to google and discover that you are on the brink of death with a rare form of cancer that no one has ever heard of? No? I mean, do you ever psych yourself out with internet searches, or is that just me? Apparently the psych yourself out technique works for crafting too. I wanted to do a quick method to bind the quilt that didn't involve cutting on the bias or running to the store for some binding. I had done a self-binding quilt before using the back, but that was just a scrap quilt for my daughter, not something special for my friend. So I took to google and there were all kinds of warnings about self binding and how you needed a walking foot to do it it's not really the best option for anything big. So I agonized about it and almost ran to the store to just buy some binding but then I talked to my mom who told me to just go for it. That's how grandma always bound quilts. Lucky grandma with no internet and know-it-all bloggers! I actually still have a quilt from grandma that is bound that way, still going strong after over 15 years. Anyway, back to the point. I just went for it (binding the quilt using the fabric from the back) and it was simple and turned out fine. No walking foot or anything. It didn't come out perfectly but it will hold up well and I don't think the baby will mind.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Scrappy crumb quilt

A couple months ago I saw this fun idea on pinterest for using up scraps. They call it a crumb quilt and it was fun! Here is the tutorial I saw, but I know there are many more out there. I loved how fun and easy it was to make:
 I have this habit of saving the most awkward of scraps in the hopes that I will use them someday and I finally found out how.
 Each block is unique and fun in it's own way. My favorites are the ones with triangles. It looks so complicated but it wasn't.
One of the things I am learning is that using white fabric to frame the blocks helps a scrappy quilt look more polished. The only fabric I bought for this quilt top was the white. I'm not sure what I'll do with this one yet but I like it!