Owen’s Giraffes – Grandson #2 Gets a Quilt

My re-entry into quilting began two years ago with the arrival of my first grandson. I dusted off my sewing machine and made “Warren’s Monsters” which rekindled my love of playing with fabric. Now, with the addition of my second grandson it was time to make another quilt; Owen’s Giraffes.

I made it up as  I went, as I usually do because I lack the discipline to follow a pattern or a plan. That’s why quilt-making is my relaxation and therapy; no rules.

Here are the Giraffe Panels:

Owen's Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

Owen’s Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

Owen's Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

Owen’s Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

Owen's Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

Owen’s Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I added the “big brother little brother” block:

Big brother Little Brother Block by gulfcoastquilts.com

Big brother Little Brother Block by gulfcoastquilts.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And a few more little boy blocks and a signature block.

Giraffe Quilt by gulfcoastquilts.com

Giraffe Quilt by gulfcoastquilts.com

Giraffe Quilt by gulfcoastquilts.com

Giraffe Quilt by gulfcoastquilts.com

Giraffe Quilt by gulfcoastquilts.com

Hidden messages on the Giraffe Quilt by gulfcoastquilts.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After adding a panel of an elephant family – and sneaking in a pink elephant for the possibility of a baby girl added to the family one day – I put the quilt together and here is the final project keeping my precious grandson warm these days.

Owen's Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

Owen’s Giraffes by gulfcoastquilts.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, it’s time for a new quilt for my oldest grandson who just got his first BIG BOY bed. This GiGi is about to begin a dinosaur quilt for his new twin-sized bed. Yes, he’s infatuated with the Dinosaur book at school – loves the creatures – so it’s got to be the subject for his quilt. This ought to be interesting. Who knows what I’ll come up with but I know I’ll have fun and there will be lots of love involved in this fabric adventure because I adore these two beautiful grandchildren of mine and I’m tickled that my son and daughter-in-law asked me to make another quilt. Love them dearly!

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Pink Circles – A Commissioned Baby Quilt

For some reason I keep getting pulled back to one of my first abstract quilt projects, crazy circles. Recently I was commissioned to do one in pink. These are fun and easy to make quilts and you can use up some of your fabric scraps!

Pink Circles - a commissioned baby quilt by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Pink Circles – a commissioned baby quilt by GulfCoastQuilts.com

The Spring Fling

I’ve been hiding in the quilting loft for weeks. Why? I boldly signed up for a booth at an upcoming fundraising event, the Spring Fling, hosted by the Navarre Beach Garden Club.

I need to bring some things that gardeners will like so there are lots of flowers involved. We’ve had a challenging winter so colorful flowers will be appreciated. I also want to have several “price points” to offer so I made a few large quilts, some baby quilts, and some inexpensive quilted greeting card / mug rugs.

While I was at it, I decided to learn a new technique I saw on Pinterest; thread sketching. I’m addicted to it and I’m bent on learning more. Here’s the latest stuff to flow out of the quilting loft:

Spring Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Fist Step – Applique: Spring Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Final version - packaged with an envelope. Spring Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Final version – packaged with an envelope. Spring Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

First Step - applique and quilt: Spring & Easter Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

First Step – applique and quilt: Spring & Easter Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Packaged and ready to go! Spring & Easter Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Packaged and ready to go! Spring & Easter Fabric Postcards / mug rugs made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Bunny Post Cards made by gulfcoastquilts.com

Bunny Post Cards made by gulfcoastquilts.com

Made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Made by GulfCoastQuilts.com

Flower Power Quilt Top ready to put together and quilt. gulfcoastquilts.com

Flower Power Quilt Top ready to put together and quilt. gulfcoastquilts.com

Learning to thread sketch - gulfcoastquilts.com

Learning to thread sketch – gulfcoastquilts.com

Learning to thread sketch - gulfcoastquilts.com

Learning to thread sketch – gulfcoastquilts.com

The Admiral’s Quilt

My oldest brother called me on the phone and said, “I have a great idea for you – a new project!” The red flag went up right away; I knew this was going to be trouble.

He suggested that I make a quilt for a retiring two-star Admiral. He recommended that I make a block for each place the Admiral served during nearly 34 years of service in the United States Navy. His first suggestion was to applique the Acropolis in Athens, Greece, and then make a block of the Golden Gate Bridge of San Francisco. He added, “Maybe you can do a block with the Navy War College in Rhode Island and the US Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor.”

I told you this was going to be a trouble.

Oh…and I wasn’t going to get paid for this quilt. I was going to do it for free because I ADORE the Admiral. Really, I do. I love the Admiral. She is my ever amazing sister-in-law who has proven you can be a successful military officer AND be an outstanding wife, mother of three fabulous kids, and grandmother of three precious grand-babies. And, to boot, she’s the best sister-in-law I could ever hope to have. I got started right away.

I began secretly stealing photos from the Admiral’s Facebook page from the various locations she had served. I did a lot of internet research finding images via Google searches. I was relieved when I got her Transcript of Naval Service to see that she had served in multiple locations twice. That meant I really only had to make ten individual blocks. Yay!

I didn’t applique the Golden Gate Bridge of San Francisco. However, I did do the Bay Bridge and Yerba Buena Island where they lived when she served at Treasure Island. And I did applique the Vincent Thomas Bridge representing her service in Long Beach, California.  And yes…I did the Acropolis of Athens Greece as a reminder of her service at the Greek Embassy and her command of the Greek language. (Oh…did I mention my sister-in-law is one of the smartest women I know? She really is amazing. And she runs marathons.)

The end result is that I got the quilt done today. It’s a surprise, and I’ll give it to her at the Change of Command and Retirement Ceremony one week from today. (See, I’m not procrastinating. I got it done early.) It was a labor of love even though I was sure I couldn’t possibly create such a quilt in the very beginning when my brother suggested it. My oldest brother…he pushed me to my limits. I did it because I adore him, too. Military spouses play a big role in the career success of every member of the military.

I love and appreciate ALL of our military members and the families that support them! Hats off to all of you!

This is our Admiral: http://www.navy.mil/navydata/bios/navybio.asp?bioID=486

Here is the Admiral’s quilt named, “Fair Winds and Following Seas.”  Shhh… it’s a surprise!

(Photos of individual blocks were taken before the quilt was assembled and quilted.)

The Admiral's Quilt by Gulf Coast Quilts www.gulfcoastquilts.com

The Admiral’s Quilt by Gulf Coast Quilts http://www.gulfcoastquilts.com

The Admiral's Quilt by www.gulfcoastquilts.com

The Admiral’s Quilt by http://www.gulfcoastquilts.com

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Trucks & Cars for a Brand New Family Member

Over the holidays my 78 year old mom and 80 year old step-dad are staying with us for three weeks. Shortly after their arrival we learned that they got their fourth great grandchild this year bringing the grand total to six great grand kids. My step dad asked me to make a quilt for his new great grandson, the first boy on his side of our combined family. My step-dad is a car guy so it naturally became the theme of the quilt. He wanted a red 1944 Ford Coupe included, reminiscent of the car of his youth. We found a few graphics of old cars and I scribbled a few ideas onto paper. Here are photos of the first few steps from design ideas to the layout. I’m knee-deep in the applique work now, then I’ll put it together and quilt it. Hopefully, I’ll get it done before they go home to Arizona so they can take it when they visit the new baby. I’ll add photos when I complete the quilt. I better get busy because I’ve only got one week to get it done!

Trucks and Cars Quilt by Gulf Coast Quilts www.gulfcoastquilts.com

Trucks and Cars Quilt by Gulf Coast Quilts http://www.gulfcoastquilts.com

car 2 car 3 car 4 car 5

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Procrastination & Too Many Projects

In 2008 I started a quilt top and never finished it because it had mistakes in it. Then, I didn’t use my sewing machine for four years.  The unfinished quilt top hung around, reminding me of my procrastination. When I started quilting again I tried to ignore the unfinished quilt. For some reason I just didn’t know who it was meant for. It didn’t have an owner. Then, finally, we got a baby girl in the family. My little great niece, Ava.  I put it together, mistakes and all, and sent it to her first birthday party in Hawaii. I think “Flutterbies” will be happy in Hawaii.

I tried to ignore "Flutterbies" but it finally found a home.

I tried to ignore “Flutterbies” but it finally found a home.

"Flutterbies" finally found a home in Hawaii. Some projects just take more time than others.

“Flutterbies” finally found a home in Hawaii. Some projects just take more time than others.

Warren’s Monsters – the quilt that rekindled a passion

This is the first quilt I made for my first grandchild. I’d abandoned my sewing machine for years until I got my first grandbaby. I just had to make something for him. This was the first quilt that started it all.

"Warren's Monsters"  - the quilt that rekindled my love of quilting after years away from my hobby. Created for my first grandchild, January 2013.

“Warren’s Monsters” – the quilt that rekindled my love of quilting after years away from my hobby. Created for my first grandchild, January 2013.

It started out too blue. I add a few blocks of green later.

I have a pretty low tech approach to planning my applique work.

I have a pretty low tech approach to planning my applique work.

I just made it up as I went. I'm just not good at following patterns and directions.

I just made it up as I went. I’m just not good at following patterns and directions.

This was the first monster. I learned that I needed stabilizer to keep the squares from puckering so off to WalMart I went.

This was the first monster. I learned that I needed stabilizer to keep the squares from puckering so off to WalMart I went.

I arranged, rearranged, and finally got it right.

I arranged, rearranged, and finally got it right.

My grandson and his quilt.

My grandson and his quilt.