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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: shot cottons

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

A decision has been made (sort of)!

Linda Beth

First of all, I want to heartily thank all of you who threw in your 2 cents and gave me some good food for thought regarding the backing fabrics for the Jewel of Friendship quilt! It did help me come to my ultimate solution.

So, in typical Linda fashion, I just couldn't bear to NOT go with either of the two front-runners, so instead I combined them.

(PLEASE excuse the horrible photo! My camera lens is in dire need of cleaning, or possibly replacing, and I just couldn't get a well framed shot here either)

I knew I did not want a scrappy backing for this project. And those of you who voted for the stripe are darn right, it carries the feeling of the quilt so well! But as I kept looking at that shot cotton, I knew I would kick myself if I didn't try it out!

So, there you have it! The quilt sandwich is now basted and I'll hopefully be able to start quilting it either Monday or, if not, later next week.

Post-holiday deadline post

Linda Beth

It feels as though I have hardly been in the sewing room at all in the last month, since returning home from my Thanksgiving travels, but I know that is not the case. However, my projects have been on short term, short turn-around time tables. Those projects are all now done.

The last week or so was dedicated to some presents, which are on their way to the recipients (if not already arrived). I'll post photos after Christmas ;-) But NOW I get to concentrate on new things! Yahoo! (of course there will always be UFOs hanging around, ready to be completed, but the new stuff is always more fun to think about!)

I've been eyeing this Alexander Henry fabric for months now... I finally succumbed today.

In 2012 I'll be participating in 2 new bees, continuing with one, plus I'm planning on taking part in Round 2 of the For the Love of Solids sewing swap on Flickr, hosted by my do.Good Stitches Bliss hive mates Megan and Elizabeth. With all of these great new adventures on the horizon, I've begun thinking about my inspirations for these various groups, and seem to have fallen in love with the color palette within that fabric. I've also started noticing other people's projects with those deep, wintery, somewhat earthy jewel tones (how's THAT for a contradiction in terms??). A couple of my favorites, found on Flickr are this quilt by Shelley Brooks and this one by rainyday*knitter.

I'm not sure yet how I hope to use this fabric, but while at work today (at the stellar Cool Cottons, of course!) I've been playing around with possible combinations...

Matched with Shot Cottons

Matched with Kona Solids

I decided to start out with a combination of the two, plus a couple of prints thrown in for good measure:

Oh, the possibilities!

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.