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linda@surroundedbyscraps.com
Portland, OR

503-997-8958

Handmade quilts and home accessories by fiber artist Linda Nussbaum. See samples of past projects as well as pieces available for sale and inspirations for custom orders. To see what is currently available for sale, please visit my Etsy Shop.

Blogger Archive

Filtering by Category: Kaffe Fassett

Blogger's Quilt Festival

Linda Beth

As many of you know, I am not always on top of the blogging and often come late to the party.

Last spring some time I checked in on my blog feed and noticed a whole bunch of the blogs that I follow had posts titled "Blogger's Quilt Festival" followed by some beautiful stories written about even more beautiful quilts they had done recently.

But this time, I'm just under the wire for Amy's link up at her blog, Amy's Creative Side.
Amy's Creative Side

I didn't have to think too hard about what quilt I want to share here. It's the Jewel of Friendship, a collaborative quilt done with the members of the Friends + Fabric {a modern stash bee} through Flickr.


This bee is kind of special to me, in that it represents a group of very talented women whom I've never actually met, but feel quite close to. The organizer of the group, Jenn {SunnyInCal}, is a member of the LAMQG and first brought together an online quilting bee via flickr at the beginning of 2011, of which I was fortunate enough to become a part. As that bee was wrapping up for the year, she extended an invitation to continue in a new year with a new group of quilters (and a fair amount of overlap). Our group for 2012 is an inspired, creative, adventuresome crew, which made me want to challenge them with an inspired, creative, adventuresome block!

Last fall or winter I spotted a group of bee blocks done by Jill Stemple {fallingforpieces} that I just fell in love with, pictured here. When I was revving up for my month with the F+F bee, I asked her if she had any problem with my using her blocks as a jumping off point, and was thrilled to hear back that she had no problem at all and had not used a specific pattern, just improvised it. PERFECT.

I played around for a bit, using a specific Alexander Henry print as my inspiration piece and came up with a few sample blocks.



As I was working on these I put together a little online tutorial, which can be found here, and made it available to the other bee members through my blog. And boy did they run with it!!


Once I got the last of the blocks and worked out a pleasing layout I ended up having to scurry to finish the quilt, having committed it to be entered at the annual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in July. I auditioned a number of different fabrics for the backing:





and ended up choosing a Kaffe Fassett shot cotton in Bluejeans, with a strip of stripe going through it. Have I mentioned how much I love using these shot cottons on the backs of quilts - they show off the quilting beautifully!


I quilted on my home machine, mimicking the wonky diamonds in the blocks, but trying not to match too closely as to seem off on any one of the blocks and bound the quilt in another great stripe fabric.


I truly would not and could not have completed this quilt without the help of the following talents (and certainly wouldn't have had such a wonderful variety of fabrics and styles and personalities to the blocks even if I had tried):
Jennifer (sunnyincal)
Maria (mpress studio)
Karen (capitolaquilter)
Lee (Mimi Lee2)
Eileen (bluebirdluxe)
Nicole R. (idreaminfabric)
Brianna (bribaby2007)
Petra (Petra Rosa)
Emily (CanyonGurl {Emily})
Nico B. (woodbines creep)
Nichole R. (n.ramirez)

Thank you all from the bottom of my heart, and this quilt deserves its title Jewel of Friendship.

Photo taken just this evening, with this quilt bringing me warmth and comfort while I await a replacement furnace!!

Quilt Measurements: approx. 55" x 65"
Special Techniques used: improv log cabin
Quilted by: me, myself and I on my Viking Lily.
Best category: Group or Bee Quilt, Scrap Quilt, Throw Quilt
Entry #500

Summer Giveaway Winner!

Linda Beth


So, we have a winner of those luscious Rowan fabrics! Since my HTML is a little rusty, I can't figure out how to get rid of this ridiculous pause before the widget, so...

...wait for it....





RANDOM.ORG - Integer Widget












True Random Number Generator














Powered by RANDOM.ORG




COMMENT #5 - Jennifer Gail
I have discovered ID discovery channel on tv. Don't laugh it's really addictive.

and thanks to her insightful comment J and I discovered that I DO get that channel as well, and had an interesting evening of watching a show called Blood, Lies, and Alibis. Oh yes! (I can totally see the addictive quality, too)

So, congratulations, Jennifer, and thanks to everyone who shared their what-ups! It's fun to get a little window into what interests others and how we are enjoying spending our time both in and outside of the sewing room!

A Grey Summer's Morn Giveaway

Linda Beth

I am sure I am not alone among us quilters/sewists in losing a little focus and motivation when the sun finally peeks out from behind the clouds and temperatures allow us to put away the hoodies and drag out the tank tops.

As some of you may know, one of my summer endeavors is my little veggie garden. Portland can be tricky with that, however. For all of the green, sometimes the late-season sun and buckets of rain make the growing season for novices like myself a bit short.

But thankfully, this year things seem to be on their way!








That said, there's also a new kind of distraction in my world this year...
I've actually had the bike for more years than I should say, since I've only started using it somewhat regularly in the last year or two, so I consider it a new distraction. And last Thursday I was so excited to finally get a chance to take it out of the basement and into the fresh air after weeks of traveling and house guests. On the way up the stairs from my basement to the back yard THIS happens:
...and about 1/2 way from my house to my sewing studio I notice the rear tire is flat - and I mean FLAT. Not yet being part of the smartphone world, I had to call J at work and ask him to look up the closest bike shop to where I was. He found Velo Cult, a shop in the Hollywood District of NE Portland (backtracking from where I was). I had never been there before, but am glad he found them online! They were awesome! Attended to the flat immediately, and had it been a little later than 10am I might even have partaken in one of the beers they have on tap while I waited! But, I stuck with my iced coffee and left with a new tube and a mini-crush.

(photo from their website... it was a quiet morning when I was there)

Okay, so there's the setup! In the spirit of spending time on new things and celebrating the lushness that is this part of the world in this season, I have a little giveaway treat...

A DESTASH OF 2.5 YARDS WORTH OF KAFFE AND FRIENDS FABRICS!
The rich colors and lush blooms of Philip Jacobs and Kaffe Fassett, balanced out by the bold geometrics of Brandon Mably - what better way to celebrate??

TO ENTER:
Leave me a comment sharing something new you've discovered (or fallen in love with) or something you've rediscovered this season or this year. This can be quilting related, but certainly doesn't have to be!!

For any Followers out there, leave a second comment for an additional chance to win.

I'll leave this open through Thursday 8/2/12, 5PM PDT and announce the winner over the weekend. I'm looking forward to hearing what's inspiring the rest of you!

REMINDER
If you are a no-reply blogger leaving a comment PLEASE leave contact info in the comment, otherwise I can not send the goodies your way!

Making the same decision twice... or thrice?

Linda Beth

Sometimes it's MUCH easier to piece together a quilt backing from random scraps, bits and pieces left behind, rather than try and find that PERFECT backing. For example, I have a quilt that I pieced, oh I don't know, about 5 or 6 years ago:
From a pattern in a Judy Hopkins book, Big 'n' Easy: Super Sized Quilts for Queen Beds

and it took me another 3-4 years and at least 2 false-start purchases to find what I believe to be just the right backing:
tents, by Brandon Mably (available at The Quilter's Studio)

Now that THAT'S off my chest (but still on the shelf!!), I'm going through something a little different. Thank goodness for deadlines! I finally got all of my Friends + Fabric blocks pieced into a stunning quilt top. Just under the wire for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show submission.

However I now need to figure out what to use as the backing... within the next day and a half!
HELP!!!

My first gut feeling:
an Anna Maria Horner print... lovely color match and complimentary motif, but generally a bit more purple than I prefer...

My first fabric purchase:
a PERFECT compliment with all the right colors and energy, by Terrie Mangat for Free Spirit, but I'm wondering if it's just a bit too busy?

Some Kaffe Fassett shot cotton possibilities (because the quilt top is so darn busy already, and I do love how those guys quilt up):
within comfort zone for Linda:


and then...
not so much one of my go-to colors, but ruled the WOW factor next to the quilt top, don't you think?

Will I regret going with the Wow, but using a basically solid fabric in a color that doesn't exist anywhere in my world?? I welcome any input, but the prewashing must begin by this Thursday...

Finding my way back

Linda Beth

The trip was excellent, and I'll be posting more photos in the coming days, but now it's time to get back to the sewing room.

I spent my first day back in the studio catching up on all of my April bee blocks — and redoing the one I had actually put together before the road trip.

Friends + Fabric [AMSB]
April is Karen's month, and she wrote a stellar tutorial for making up a variation on a quilt she made previously, seen here.
My first try... at a glance looks good, but I put the rectangles together backwards. That'll teach me to follow a tutorial after only printing out the first 2 pages, preparing for sewing without access to my computer, but wanting to save paper!

So, I began my work today picking out stitches while re-watching an episode of Greek through Netflix.
Hopefully with the right orientation this time!

Block #2

Seeing the two side by side gives a great view of the value contrasts (which is something Karen was looking for in these blocks and will make a stunning, stunning finished quilt!)

Design Camp [think outside the block]
This is an improv swap with a relatively loose format, but this month Mary gave us some guidelines within which to work. She sent out packets with strips of yummy autumnal Kaffe Fassett and Philip Jacobs prints along with some Kona Butter solid and a strip of one other solid. She shared a tutorial for making up chevrons (or french braids) to be encorporated into the blocks, but left the overall layout up to each of us.



do. Good Stitches - Bliss Circle
This year seems to be starting off with the representational blocks for this group! Marian pointed a tutorial by Heather of Olive and Ollie for these sweet little house blocks.
I was going for a little mid-century masonry and an ivy covered roof on this one!

I love how the pattern on this Joel Dewberry fabric looks like we're peering through a beautiful ironwork fence!
Unfortunately, these blocks didn't end up exactly the target size, but thankfully Marian is being super flexible about it! And on these guys my problems with pressing all of these seam allowances open is much more evident than in the other bee blocks for the month. I can certainly understand the benefit of that technique in bee blocks, but it's not always the most efficient method.

All in all I think today went pretty well, and as an added bonus, I got to finish it off by meeting a friend for dinner at Ya Hala, a spectacular Lebanese restaurant in SE. And now I am {enjoying?} a pretty intense film that keeps drawing my attention away from this post, "The Bang Bang Club," about a group of photojournalists in South Africa in the mid-'90s. Holy _ _ _ _! Worth watching, to be sure!

Some Shot Cotton Love

Linda Beth

July's been a busy month for me, which has unfortunately taken away from some of my sewing obligations. I've done my best to stay on task with some precommits, but besides that, my sewing room has been more or less dormant. But that will be changing soon....

It never ceases to amaze me that no matter how little time we have, or how little we're getting done in that time, new projects and inspirations always pique the interest. Just over a week ago, I spotted a link to a new swap on Flickr: For the Love of Solids, introduced as a joint effort by Megan, at Canoe Ridge Creations (blog) and Elizabeth, at Don't Call me Betsy (blog). My heart quite literally went "pitter-pat" as I read the description and paged through a few of the members' inspiration mosaics. But then the logic side of my brain kicked in making it abundantly clear that in NO WAY do I have the time right now to commit to another swap. It's all I can do to get my "I *Heart* the '80s" package together and in the post by deadline (which is this coming Monday, by the way!). And next month I am going to be moving my sewing studio in to a new studio space, as well as finally coming through with the place mat commission that I've struggled with since May or maybe even April, plus concentrating on inventory for an upcoming craft fair. So, I would hate to short-change an unsuspecting swap partner... I'll have to wait until Round 2 gets under way, but that doesn't mean I can't ogle some of the current entries, while salivating over this amazing spectrum of Shot Cottons at Cool Cottons...


finishing some unfinished business

Linda Beth

Here in Portland we've had a long, LONG winter, a very cool spring, and are only recently seeing any signs of summer (coincidentally, those signs began just about the same day as the official first day of summer). Considering that the best place for me to photograph my finished quilts is hanging from my neighbor's fence along our back yards, I waited until just a little over a week ago to shoot some of the quilts I began much earlier this year.

The first quilt I began in 2011 is this one:
which I've been calling Multi-Faceted in Sherbet, a follow up to an earlier quilt:


I did a post about getting this quilt started back in January, beginning with the gorgeous Philip Jacobs fabric I used on the border, and choosing as many prints as I could muster that pulled the colors from within that print.
The process itself went quite smoothly, and I got a finished quilt top just a few short weeks later, but it was the backing and quilting that really brought it all together. The original "Multi-Faceted..." quilt I quilted myself, echoing one of the off-set diamonds, and had chosen a Kaffe Fasset shot cotton for the backing. That was the best choice I have ever made in my quilting career - introducing me to the beauty that is a quilted shot cotton! And so, I went back to Cool Cottons to find just the right color of shot cotton to back the sherbet quilt... and I found it.

Also, in the meantime, I had been introduced to the flexibility of piecework on the backing. I had so many strips left over from the quilt top that it seemed a waste to throw them back in the scrap bags to be mishandled and forgotten, so I decided to use what I could to spice up the backing on this quilt. And this is what I ended up with:



Now, for the stunning quilting you all see, I have the lovely Melissa Hoffman, a.k.a. Fiddlestitches Quilting, to thank. Based in Newberg, OR, wine country just a bit outside of Portland, she is a wonderful person to have in one's corner, and I have never seen quilting of her's that does anything less than enhance the quilt!

The plan, now, is to continue the line of "Multi-Faceted..." quilts in different colorways, and see what I come up with down the road.