Maxine Mossop, one of our Australian members, writes me that she’s completed and donated 4 HeartStrings quilts to the Lady Huntington Centre in North Melbourne and has 2 additional quilts ready to be donated to Royal Children’s Hospital Intensive Care Unit Parkville in Melbourne. I had no idea she’d been so busy working and finishing this many quilts.
In this first one she’s used the same fabric for the block centers, an inner border, and the binding which pulls this quilt together very nicely.
Of this second quilt she writes; “This is really a strippy I suppose I used all I/Spy scrap as this quilt was to be used by the sitting babies as a floor rug and I wanted it to be interesting…the feedback on this quilt was very positive m 46’x 56″ Instead of using a plain colour between the strips I used very small pieces to separate”
This 3rd quilt is made from leftover strips from quilts made for her grandsons and the blocks are only 4 inches square as she was working from small scraps. This quilt and the next are for the 3/4 year old boys at the centre.
Of these last two, Maxine writes “ these 2 quilts both 36″x48″ which I have just finished will be going to the Royal Children’s Hospital Intensive Care Unit Parkville in Melbourne Vic Aus. they have very specific instructions for size as the quilt must just lay on top of the cot/bed /isolette.”
Strings quilts have long been a favorite of mine and this project fits in nicely with my interest in trying just about every variation I can think of. My favorite quilts tend to be very scrappy and usually from traditional patterns and string quilts certainly fall in both categories.
My first string quilt was made from a pattern in the book Great Lakes Great Quilts (my version was not nearly as bright as the one in the book).
Although I love multicolored string quilts, I frequently experiment with color. The colors for this next quilt were chosen after reading a magazine article that discussed using fabrics from half the color wheel in a quilt. Well they used the *warm* side but I tend to like the *cool* side better so I pulled all my blue, green, purple and yellow strings for this quilt.
Don’t you love the scalloped border on this one? Anyone following my blog realizes that I do very little applique and no needle turn EXCEPT for these scallops (that means they’re really easy!). This pattern was in an issue of Quiltmakers All Time Favorites for Kids magazine.
Another experiment in color led to this next quilt. I was making blue string blocks and as I got about 1/2 way through making the blocks I wasn’t sure I was going to like the quilt. I searched through my books and came across an Hourglass string quilt in Gwen Marston’s book Liberated Strings and decided that would work just fine.
Once I started cutting and sewing the hourglass blocks, I changed my mind about the original quilt and made both. You can see my Blue Strings here.
I’ll warn you that making string blocks is addicting but if you’re ready to begin we’ll point you to Bonnie Hunter’s Quiltville site where you’ll find a String Quilting Primer to get you started.
Darlene is taking a break from string quilts for the moment but I have a feeling she’ll be dragging out her string bins before long. By the 31st of January she’d already mailed 247 HeartStrings blocks to Sue and we’d only officially begun the project the 1st of January.
She reported her progress recently and shared some of her finished tops. I love this first quilt where she’s used the narrow light strips on either side of the center green one. Notice the floral and novelty print versions below as well.
“Since the beginning of January I have made.
5 tops worth of blocks sent to Sue
9 quilt tops for Cricket’s homeless shelter project
1 quilt top for Quilts for Kids in Maine
1 queen sized top for myself
I’ve gone through a bolt and a half of 90″ wide muslin. I just bought another bolt, so I have it on hand when I am ready to pull out my strings again.”
Darlene and Cricket met the beginning of February and Darlene began working with Cricket on making quilts for the homeless.
Cricket tells me that these quilts will be donated to one of the shelters in Western Massachusetts, around Springfield. “The way I determine it is to see how many quilts I have, what sizes they are, and then call a shelter that uses those sizes. I give one quilt to each person in the shelter at that time, and the quilts are theirs to keep. I donate to 5 or 6 shelters in this area, depending on how many quilts I have. They are a treat to the residents and cause great excitement among residents and staff each year. ”
She reminded us all during a discussion about the attractiveness of our string quilts that these quilts will be valued by the recipients and she should know because she’s been making quilts for homeless families for 10 years as well as spending time volunteering in shelters. There’s still a lot of work to be done to make these tops into quilts but I can tell Cricket is up to the task.
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Kitty recently posted a photo of a HeartStrings quilt that she is donating to the Tampa VA hospital. She used the red center blocks made according to the guidelines on her quilt and it’s just beautiful. The top was quilted by a longarm quilter in her guild and she commented that she’d shown it at her guild’s show and tell and even included a photo for us to see.
Kitty also had a great tip for hanging quilts up to take pictures. She reported that she bought 3-4 large magnetic clips from the office store and used them to take a photo against her metal garage door. Great idea!
For those of you in guilds, don’t forget to take your HeartStrings tops or quilts in and share information about the project. You can refer people to the HeartStrings website and from there they can find links to the Yahoo group and this blog.