Friday, October 24, 2014

Plumeria and Daisies: A Tribute to Vai

I saved this quilt finish and gift presentation for 5 days, because I am entering the quilt in the Blogger's Quilt Festival, which starts today.


"Plumeria and Daisies" or "You are in Our Hearts"








Quilt stats:

54x54"
Plumeria appliqué by BarbaraBieraugelDesigns.com
The rest of the quilt designed by me, Rachell Reilly

Thread:
Superior King Tut: Mint Julep 1023, Malachite 989, Alabaster 997
Masterpiece 131 pale green for piecing
Connecting Threads Essential Cotton 21119 Hyacinth purple
Fabric:
Purple Batik, Teal Batik,
Background: Legacy Cotton Solid "Curaçao" (aqua-green)
Kona Cotton: Cypress (medium aqua green) for backing and hanging sleeve
Purple blender from Cranston Village for backing and binding.

I finished this quilt last Saturday, and my neighbor Kira embroidered the label on her Bernina machine on Sunday afternoon. I literally drove straight from her house to the hospital to present the quilt to sweet Vai Malungahu and her parents, my cousin Jessica and her husband Taylor Malungahu. I sat down and sewed the label to the quilt as I spoke with her parents; then her dad, mom and I all tucked Vai into the quilt. She is mostly sedated to control the pain. Vai has been in the hospital for two weeks, for uncontrollable vomiting and pain. Her heart has just been weakening so fast. We all feel blessed that she was strong and courageous for four months longer than the doctors all thought she would. Taylor, her tall Tongan dad, silently cried as he opened the quilt from the gift bag and gave me a big bear hug. That was seriously the best thanks.



(Photos taken Sunday, October 19, 2014)

As I'm writing this post, I learned that Vai passed away this morning, Friday, October 24, 2014. She was just 20 years old.
We are all saddened, but grateful for a loving Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, who provided a way for families to be sealed together in the temple for time and eternity; so we know we will see her again.



If you haven't been following me lately, here is her story.
She received a heart transplant when she was 9. Soon after, she was adopted by her cousin Taylor and his wife, Jessica, who is my cousin. Vai has struggled this past year with heart valve replacement, received a pacemaker, and been admitted several times. After some serious pain in June, the doctors diagnosed her with heart failure specific to transplant patients, and gave her 6 weeks to live. In July, Vai and her family were able to fly to visit her family in Tonga and New Zealand for the first and last time since Vai came to the United States.






I chose the Hawaiian-style appliqué because Vai is Tongan. I used batiks because it would go so well with her island heritage. She loves Plumeria flowers, and purple and green. I quilted daisies in the borders, because daisies are also her favorite flower. I used one appliqué for the medallion center, and cut another appliqué into four pieces to appliqué in the triangles for a square-in-square effect. (I didn't have time to appliqué a large quilt, and my tendinitis wrists would probably complain too.)

I feel so blessed, every step of the way, in this quilt journey. Barbara Bieraugel gifted me her Plumeria pattern when I commented on her blog, telling her Vai's story. She has been such a great teacher and support to me, with all my questions, and my first experience with needle-turn Hawaiian appliqué.

I had the purple batik in my stash, waiting for something special. I found the perfect aqua solid to match the aqua in the butterfly print in the batik. Kim's Fabric Outlet www.kimsfabric.com had a Thrifty Thursday on her Facebook page, and I found the beautiful teal batik, and the green-aqua daisy-swirl batik for the backing. (I found the purple batik at Fabric Outlet too, last year!)
I found color cards at Superior Threads booth at HMQS, so it was easy to match thread to the quilt. I ordered the King Tut thread from www.SewThankful.com, and Tracy the owner was able to mail them to me in less than 3 days...New Mexico to Utah!  I used the entire spool of Mint Julep for all the echo quilting, using the last bit to sew on the label. I seriously felt like the widow with the last bit of flour, being blessed by Heavenly Father to last and have just enough to finish.
I'm grateful for my neighbor Kira for the quilt label.








I just can't get enough of this quilt. Maybe I took a ton of photos, but it has seriously turned out so beautiful.

Hopefully, this quilt will provide cuddle comfort in Vai's memory for her parents and younger siblings.

Received mug swap

Hi!
I participated in Rapped with Luv's "Give a Mug, Get a Mug" swap. I received my package in the mail yesterday.

I was a little disappointed not to see a note with contact information from my new friend...there was only a name and address from "Melissa" from "Butterfly Kisses Crafts" on the return label on the box.

But what fun goodies!

A beautiful large aqua mug. (Just my style with the cute etched designs, almost like quilting designs)
Apple cider mix!
Pumpkin spice cocoa mix!
Peppermint cocoa mix!
Peppermint Altoids
Peppermint Burt's Bees lip balm
Two yummy mint/eucalyptus hand sanitizers
And cute purple and aqua note card pack


(I'm seeing a definite theme of mint here!)
And Melissa definitely caught my favorite colors of purple and aqua.

Thanks Melissa! Thanks Rapped with Luv for organizing the swap, and for That's Sew You by Jennifer for inviting me to the swap!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Feeling great with Lone Star


Hi there!
I'm feeling pretty good about myself tonight. Over the weekend, I had an awesome quilt finish and gifting that quilt was wonderful and very special; one of the best I've had yet! I'm still putting my post together about it, however, because I'm saving it for Blogger's Quilt Festival that starts this weekend!

But I will let you see what I finished tonight:
The quilting on my Little Lone Star.



I was trying to get the lighting better; that didn't work out very well. I seriously need a design wall.

Anyhoo, this will end up being a wall hanging. It's about 20" square. I love the Patriotic-colored variegated thread: it's King Tut by Superior, called Americana #919. It just makes the star sparkle like fireworks in the night sky!

I've wanted to do my own star with the curved wine-glass quilting inside the diamonds, like I see at a lot of shows. It turned out quite well this time! In the blue backgrounds, squares and triangles, I used a combination Diamond and Lattice design that I put together from taking Angela Walter's' Craftsy class: "Dot-To-Dot Quilting". Again, I was going for the radiating light rays from the star.

This star resulted from trying to enlarge the star from 6" to 12" from my Sylvia's Bridal Sampler quilt....I thought doubling the strip widths for the strip piecing would work, but it didn't. It resulted in approximately an 18" star, not a 12" star. And then I didn't know what size to cut the background triangles and squares! I had to take it to my Quilt-Pro on the computer, pull the star from the Block Library, and tell it what size I wanted for a 18" star so that I could finish this one. The triangles Quilt-Pro told me to cut were too big, so once I set them into the star, I trimmed the whole block.

It was great practice to get the technique down, with strip-piecing, and cutting 45 degree angles. And this block was great to practice quilting, and to test out the thread, to see if I liked the variegated thread for the whole Sylvia's Bridal Sampler quilt.

Then I turned back to the Quilt-Pro and used the cutting chart for the 12" block that it provided. And that worked out just like it needed to; that block is waiting in the stack with the rest of the blocks.

I think it looks great. And now I'll go to bed. Baby has his 9-month checkup tomorrow with vaccines. Oh joy. (How in the heck did 9 months just go by since he was born?!!!!!)




Friday, October 17, 2014

Quilting complete

I now officially declare that the quilting is finished on the plumeria Hawaiian-style appliqué!


I will get better pictures soon. 

I'm preparing the hanging sleeve, and I need to trim the quilt sandwich.

Then let the binding begin!

Vai is in the hospital, barely hanging on to life, according to her mother and grandmother today. She's barely conscious. My heart aches for her and her family.
This quilt's journey is almost finished for me, and I'm anxious to help provide some little comfort to her family with it.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Mug swap

Hi!

Just getting my items together, ready to pack in a box and mail, for the "Give a Mug...Get a Mug" swap by Rapped with Luv.

Two kinds of hot chocolate mix, apple cider mix, Cake in a Mug mix, the mug, and a cute Celtic coaster/mug rug. 

Uh, the mug rug ended up looking like Christmas colors. Oh well-I'm really proud of it!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Almost wordless Wednesday


Backing pieced. Binding prepared.

Oh see, there's daisies in the backing, so there's still daisies that Vai loves, in the quilt !


Off to bed!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

ALYOF: September Finish

I think that I did pretty well for September.  I would have liked to get more done, but it is what it is.

1--The HST Star is all quilted, except for the final outer border. Yay!

2--the Hawaiian-style Plumeria got its final border tonight! Whee! It's now about 54" square. It's been a longer ride than I hoped, with so many ideas floating in my head and indecision fogging up the ideas.


And I received the quilting thread so quickly from my order from SewThankful !

Meanwhile, I've been playing with Sue Pelland's Hearts and More templates. They are very slick, so I will need to get the grippers like she recommends. I wanted to put daisies on the Hawaiian appliqué, but the fun, cute daisies just didn't jive well with the more formal Plumeria. Plus, the daisies seemed to interrupt the flow of the two-color quilt, and interrupt the flow of the medallion on point.



At first, I cut individual petals with the template. (White daisy) That started to get tedious.



Then I read a bit more in the template instructions and the different types of shapes and cuts. Sue shows how to make 4 and 6 petal flowers, and mentioned 8-petal flowers in passing. I cut a square of pre-fused fabric, then folded it into eighths like I did with the Hawaiian appliqué. I stapled the fabric together, then used the template to draw the curves on the folds. I used scissors to cut, then opened the flowers! I also used the template to cut the circles for the flower centers.

So now I need to figure out what to do with the daisies!  How fun....!