New Orleans House Project

Monday, February 28, 2022

February Mini: Scrappy Snowballs

 I have had Snowball quilt blocks on the brain since the beginning of 2022.

Snowballs may seem a bit out of place in New Orleans, especially since our winter weather rarely features snow.  

The last time it snowed in New Orleans was December, 2008.  Hardly enough snow for snowballs!

 On the other hand, we love our warm-weather snowballs, and consider our version of the summer-time treat to be the best!

The first ice shaving machine was invented in New Orleans in 1936.  The SnoWizard machine started the  New Orleans snowball tradition, and the popularity of snowballs has never waned.

Our snowballs are made with finely shaved ice and heavenly syrup flavors.  At your neighborhood snowball stand you'll find a myriad of fruit flavors as well as local favorites like wedding cake and cream of nectar (nectar was a popular local soft drink flavor back in the day: a combo of almond and vanilla).   There are even "gourmet" snowball emporiums that dish out flavors like vanilla orchid cream, rosehips raspberry, and ginger cayenne.

But I digress.  


 My February mini was inspired by a similar quilt I saw online, and the happy chance of finding a stack of 2.5 inch blue squares in my reproduction fabric scrap bin.

The snowballs finished at 2 inches.  The checkered border didn't work out exactly, but that's OK with me.  Most of the fabrics in the top were scraps - just a small amount of yardage was cut to get enough snowball blocks...and the binding.

I found this cute teacup toile in my stash - just right for the backing.

I used a single fold binding again for this quilt.  I'm definitely glad I added this technique to my bag of quilting tricks.

And now I hope I've satisfied my craving for snowballs!

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Rainbow Scrap Surprise

 I did not anticipate doing any Rainbow Scrap Challenge sewing this month.

I thought my only ongoing RSC project this year would be to make and assemble Antique Tile blocks.  And maybe assemble some neglected RSC blocks from previous years, but that was really more wishful thinking than an actual plan.

The RSC color for February is teal, and I had already made teal Antique Tile blocks last August, so - no new RSC sewing, right?

Not so fast!  As I was digging through the box of reproduction fabric scraps, looking for fabrics for an entirely different inspiration, I came across a hunk of 2-inch teal strips.  Were there enough strips and enough variety to make a Blackford's Beauty block?

Well yes - another Blackford's Beauty block created!

Hmmm...I also made a Blackford's Beauty block in bright fabric scraps last month.  Are there enough scrappy teal brights to make another BB block?

And another block joins the bunch!

The blocks finish at 12 inches, so if I want a bed-sized quilt I'll need more than just one block per month.  Maybe an alternate chain block?

There's still plenty of time to think about how to put these blocks to use, so for now I'm just going to enjoy making them every month!

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Return of the Flying Mimosas


I'm happy to be sharing a February Finish:  Flying Mimosas!

Finished size:  76" x 84"

 The quilt was inspired by a Missouri Star Quilt company Triple Play video featuring Flying Geese quilt block patterns.

I had the perfect fabric bundle for the quilt aging in my stash - Mimosa by Another Point of View for Windham Fabrics.  Hence the name "Flying Mimosas"!

Diane Knott of Butterfly Threads Quilting did the long-arm quilting for me. 



I found just the right binding fabric at my local quilt store, and used it for bias binding.  Bias stripes are one of my favorite bindings!

I meant to use machine stitching for the entire binding, but my brain was on auto-pilot and I sewed the binding to the front of the quilt instead of the back.  Oops, that meant hand stitching the binding to the back of the quilt.

Having the quilt cover me during stitching was a good way to keep warm during the chilly weather we've been having!

This was definitely a fun quilt to make!  
I just need to add a label, and then it will be ready to gift to a special family friend.  

I also came up with a tulip quilt block pattern to share with my quilt group for March's lotto block.
I incorporated piecing techniques from a couple of different tulip block patterns to come up with my block.  Of course I had to make several of them to make sure the pattern worked OK!

Saturday, February 12, 2022

February: Flannel and Tulips

 I didn't know February would be for Flannel, but I've just finished assembling a flannel quilt top and I didn't go crazy working with that notoriously difficult fabric!

I bought a flannel fat quarter bundle last fall and used some of the pieces to make pillows for my oldest son:

I had a vague idea I would use the remains of the FQ bundle to make a quilt for him, even though I really dislike working with flannel fabric.
When I saw the Harmony flannel quilt pattern from Carried Away Quilting, I thought it would be a good way to use up my flannel remainders.  I purchased the pattern and some additional flannel yardage and started cutting and sewing.

I didn't want to have a lot of leftovers - because I don't like sewing with flannel - so I simplified the block requirements and went with just solid navy blue flannel.  

The sashing around the blocks is a heather gray flannel and the cornerstones are also navy.


Finally, I added a black four inch border and pronounced it done.  Yes, the backing will also be flannel, but that's a story for another time.

BTW, if you're considering a flannel quilt, here are some things that might make life easier for you:  pre-wash your fabric, use a walking foot on your sewing machine, decrease the pressure from your presser foot, and increase your stitch length.  I practiced all these techniques, but I'll still never voluntarily make another flannel quilt!

I needed some distractions while I was working with the flannel, so I contemplated lotto blocks for my small, local quilt guild.

I volunteered to coordinate lotto blocks for February.  There are only 18 quilters in the group, so it's not a huge project to prep for.  On the other hand, I'm a new member and don't really know much about the group's past projects.

This is the lotto block for January!  
The coordinator provided ALL the fabric AND did all the cutting (Accuquilt to the rescue).  This is not typical of the group's lotto projects, but it still gave me a lot to think about.
I wanted something simple to construct, but seasonal and different.  
I think my choice is going to be tulip blocks.
I studied a bunch of different blocks online, then started playing.
I took the two designs I liked best and tweaked the block size and piecing techniques.  
Do you have a favorite?

I think a tulip wall hanging or table topper is in my future.  These are too cute to just make one block.  In my research I learned there are purple tulips...and I love the color purple, so I think the color scheme is decided!