November 30, 2009

Elizabeth's Mystery Quilt Challenge Update, Part III

I'm still working on my Twilight quilt. I think I've worked out all the blocks now. I ended up taking out one of the "Vegetarian Vampire Eyes" blocks, moving the "Lion and Lamb" block up, scooting "Vampire Baseball" over and adding in a "Bella's Birthday" block. Wanda shared her wonderful silver fabrics and I'm excited to make a mini version of Iris' cake (although probably much less fabulous) with presents for that block. I also moved the "I Am Switzerland" block over and added in a "Battle in the Woods" block. I think that covers most of the main points in the books. I am always thinking about how to do things and I'm still really excited about working on this quilt. Moving the "Switzerland" block made it an odd size, 4" x 6". I plan on using a Swiss Flag Shield designed by Cat. She visited Switzerland on her honeymoon and said that they display shields much more than they display flags so she designed her block after that. The shape of the shield also adds more visual interest. In trying to fit the shield pattern, which is square, into a rectangular spot on the quilt, I had a stroke of genius (sometimes that happens, lol!). I'm going to make the shield 4" x 4" and add the words "I am" in a 1" strip above and "Switzerland" in a 1" strip below the shield. It keeps the shape of the shield in tact and fills the space. I love it when I have a great idea like that! But still, I can't claim this quilt as wholly "mine." I'm the first one to admit that I'm not great with the original ideas, but I know when I see something good. If it weren't for the other ladies in our group, I wouldn't have nearly as nice a layout. I love the exchange of ideas and the support we all lend each other! Thanks so much, ladies!

I had hoped to be farther along in my Twilight quilt by now. But it always seems to take a back seat. I did wolf paws for the New Moon quilt and wanted to do the "My Jacob" wolf paw block as I did those, but as I was under a deadline I didn't want to put my personal projects in the way and make my part of the quilt late (well, later than it already was *rolling eyes at my procrastination skills!*). I'm all nice and practiced up, though, and plan on working on that block soon. I also hoped to do my motorcycle blocks at the same time I worked on the block for the New Moon quilt, but I was under a huge time crunch and once I saw how much work it was, I decided that I'd better not work on those either. I hate to go back and do something a second time (I'd rather do it all at once), but the motorcycle block was pretty fun, so it won't be too bad to go back for a 're-do' on that block either. Those are the blocks that I will be working on next. In spare minutes I'm also working on getting the trees in the top and bottom borders stitched down. I'd originally planned on doing a machine blanket stitch, but when I worked on the Motorcycles block for the NM quilt, I used the same trees (thanks for the pattern Iris!) and did a hand whipstitch to tack them down. I wanted the stitching to be very subtle, almost invisible and it seemed to go pretty well. I enjoy doing handwork, so I decided to do the trees along the top and bottom the same way. I'm also going to add the famous "The City of Forks Welcomes You" sign to the top row of trees. I'd thought about doing that on the bottom row, but I think the top row will be better.

And now for the latest two blocks! I'm excited to have all four book covers and consequently all four corners of my quilt finished! This is the New Moon Book cover, pattern designed by the lovely and talented Cat! As I was working on it, I compared it to the book cover. Cat does an amazing job using light and shadow and color to create the book covers. I was thinking that when I have it quilted, I would like to have the "veins" of the flower petals quilted in to give it that delicate look that the book cover has. The main red color is a fabric that Iris sent me. I think she's used it in her quilt as well. I had exactly enough to make the tulips. Thanks Iris! The darker burgundy accent (just a few spots of it) is from Wanda. The white is Snow Fairy Frost (can I ever manage a block without Fairy Frost?) and the background is the black I've chosen to use throughout my quilt. It is a Civil War reproduction fabric (I always think of Jasper when I think of that) and it always surprises me that it fits in so well in every block I've used it in. The tiny flowers are so perfect. They add just the right texture and color compliment to the blocks. I managed to work out most of my issues with the fabric pulling and the thread showing, but in some places (like the stem) where there is layer upon layer of seam allowances, it still pulls a little, no matter what I do. That is still a frustration to me.

The Breaking Dawn book cover is another Cat original. I am always so grateful that Cat will share her awesome patterns; I even got to be her pattern tester for this one. I used Fairy Frost (what else?): Red for the pawn, Snow for the Queen and Natural on the chess board. Again, I used the black Civil War reproduction fabric for the background. It will also be the quilt back. I keep wondering if it is going to work on the next block but it always seems to look nice with whatever other fabrics I pair it with. I like the contrast in textures between the Fairy Frost and the plain old calico. The chess board is almost the exact size of the book cover (the width is exact, but it is just a tiny bit shorter) and is about as close as you can come to the real thing in fabric. Cat did a really amazing job with this pattern. I traced the chess pieces directly off the cover of the book. More details will be added to the Queen and pawn when they are quilted, defining the ridges on the pieces.

Christmas is quickly approaching, and although I've really tried to pare back the number of projects I'll be doing, it is still a little out of hand. I hope to be able to squeeze in a little stitching time on this quilt between now and then, though. And as soon as the holidays are over, this will become my number 1 project. I'll keep you updated, as Post-and-Tell is one of my very favorite things!

November 27, 2009


A little bit about me . . .

I live in South Australia and I'm a Traffic/Civil Engineer by trade. This is how I became "Hardhatcat!!!" My favourite craft hobbies are knitting and quilting. If often gets too hot in Summer here for kntting (last year my outside thermometer burst at 120ºF/50ºC), but my sewing room is nice and cool, so I often do most of my sewing in the warmer months.

I used to be an off and on quilter and didn't do much work until I was part of the Harry Potter Craftdom and was introduced to fan-based quilting and paper piecing. As soon as I started paper piecing I knew I had found the style that suited me the most. I was taught the paper piecing technique from Jennifer Ofenstein ( via her online videos and plenty of emails. It wasn't long before I started designing patterns myself. My first paper pieced pattern that I designed was an old wizard pattern, that is still one of my favourite patterns to this day. I have an Etsy store and I also have free patterns available on the Guest Designers page on I knew after reading Twilight just exactly how I wanted to express my fandom. It started off with my Forbidden Fruit pattern, which is a paper piecing homage to the front cover of Twilight. This was then made available for free from the website and I added a few other Twilight themed patterns.

That is how I became part of the Twilight Coven. I had Elizabeth contact me about one of my patterns and it just went on from there. While I didn't manage to make any blocks myself in the orginal "Quilt for Stephenie Meyer" it featured several of my patterns so I still feel part of that project. For our second group project, a New Moon themed quilt for charity, I was able to contribute a couple of blocks. I did the yellow porsche or "Grand Theft Auto" block which was also my own pattern and the "Paper Cut" pattern that was a modified version of a pattern by Jennifer Ofenstein from It was fantastic being part of the group. It's sometimes a bit harder for me to be part of online conversations as I'm generally 1/2 day ahead of everyone else in the group due to being the other side of the international date line, but I'm always made to feel part of the group.

I have several other personal quilting projects that are on the go at the moment, including a couple of Twilight themed ones, so hopefully I can have some more patterns available for people next year. I'm also expecting my first child next year, so I'm not sure how many projects I'll actually manage to finish for a while! Hopefully you won't have to wait too long for me to have other blocks available for you all to use.

Cat, aka hardhatcat

Stephenie Meyer Quilt: Charity Donation

After completion, we entered the quilt we made for Stephenie Meyer in the Springville Museum of Art Quilt Show, which ran July 17, through September 2, 2009. There were 93 quilts accepted into the show and the committee awarded 19 ribbons. Our quilt was awarded Best Group Quilt, with a prize of $100. As a group, we decided that the money should be donated to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation, the official TwilightMOMS charity. The donation was finally made on November 19th at the Utah New Moon Movie Premiere in Utah. Amy (L), one of the charity coordinators for the event accepts the check for $100 made to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation. We are delighted to give this money to such a worthy cause.

New Moon Quilt: Charity Auction

Our beautiful New Moon quilt was donated to the TwilightMOMS New Moon Movie Premiere Event in Utah on November 19th and 20th. It was part of a charity silent auction. We are pleased to announce the the quilt sold for $850.00, all of which was donated to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation, the official TwilightMOMs charity. The quilt is pictured here with Laura, one of the charity coordinators and the winner of the quilt. Attendees at the event were able to bid in person and those unable to make it out to Utah were able to bid on-line. Volunteers kept the bidding current on-line and at the event so that there was no confusion of the last highest bid for all the bidders. By the end of the night on the 19th, bidding was up to $550 for the quilt. The 20th was a quiet day for bidding, but an on-line bid at the in the last few minutes prompted Laura to action in the last seconds, with the winning bid of $850.

In addition to our quilt, there were several other items up for auction. The combined total of the action final prices was approximately $1900, all donated to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation.

The Silent Auction table at the New Moon Event where we also displayed the Stephenie Meyer quilt.

The Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation donation station, where Twilight themed wristbands were available for purchase for $3 each. The proceeds went to Alex's Lemonade Stand.

Event attendees getting their wristbands.

Some of the charity auction items; a Peter Facinelli autographed photo, a Wolf Pack Gift Basket, a Twilight Gift Basket, and a movie date with the Event's Edward look-alike.

More auction items; a Twilight themed gift basket, a Cullen Themed gift basket, a ball cap embroidered with the movie filming date and location signed by Edi Gathegi and a pair of Chuck Taylor Converse shoes. The shoes pictured are Voluri themed, but the winner of the auction was to receive a pair in their size and painted by Punk Your Chucks. They sold for $300.

Another view of the New Moon quilt. Elizabeth volunteered at the silent auction table all day on the 19th and for the last two hours of the auction on the 20th. Both those who were bidding and those who just stopped by to look had so many positive compliments for our quilt. It was fun to stand by anonymously and hear what they had to say about our handiwork.

Pictured here are Elizabeth (L) and Joyce (R) next to the quilt. Joyce and her daughter Joan drove out to be at the event, the only members of our group other than Elizabeth who were able to make it to the Event.

November 16, 2009

New Moon Quilt: Finished

On August 4, 2009 the Twilight Quilters Coven announced that we would be making a New Moon themed quilt to be auctioned off at the Utah New Moon Movie Premiere Event in Salt Lake City, with all proceeds going to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation. For a while, it looked a bit dicey, but we've made it to the finish line and have a lovely quilt that we hope will bring a nice donation for ALSF.

The quilt arrived safely in Utah today and is currently in the possession of one of the members of the charity committee on the Events by Alice team. The charity portion of the Utah New Moon Event will be spotlighted tomorrow, November 17, 2009 on Good Things Utah, a local morning TV show. It will then be returned to Elizabeth for a few finishing details, including a hanging sleeve and a label for the back of the quilt.

The silent auction (on-line bidding was available) will begin on Thursday, November 19th at 3:00 pm and end at 7:00 pm on Friday, November 20th.

Click on the picture of the quilt for a bigger view. You can read more about the construction of the quilt and see close-ups of each of the blocks by clicking on the links below:

November 15, 2009

New Moon Quilt: Machine Quilting Finished

Angie finished the machine quilting and sewed the binding on the quilt on Friday and sent it to Elizabeth via Priority Mail. It is due to arrive tomorrow. Elizabeth will turn the binding and stitch it down on the back. The quilt will hopefully be featured on Good Things Utah, along with Lisa Hansen, TwilightMOMS creator, as a final bit of publicity before the big Utah New Moon Movie Premier Event in Salt Lake City. The quilt will be auctioned off at the event, via silent auction (on-line bidding available) and all the proceeds will be donated to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation, the official TwilightMOMS charity.

Angie posted the last couple of completed blocks before she send the quilt off. Here they are:

Iris' spectacular Bella's Birthday Cake block with beautiful roses quilted into the background.

Iris' As if I'd Never Existed block. This is the largest block in the quilt and so it is difficult to get a good picture or the entire thing at once. Angie quilted in some amazing details, like siding into the house and a pretty design in the grass.

Jerri Lynn's Vote block, with accent stitch-in-the-ditch quilting.

Joyce's Dangerous Meadow is combined with Elizabeth's Wolf Pack to create a complete block.

November 12, 2009

New Moon Quilt: A Few More Finished

Angie has nearly all the blocks quilted. Here are a few more that she's finished.

Mel's Volturi block with stitching to compliment the swirls at the bottom of the block.

Cat's Grand Theft Auto block with stitch-in-the-ditch accents, clouds in the sky, swirls in the tire and a sort-of crosshatch pattern on the road.

Mel's La Tua Cantante block with a staff quilted in across the pattern of the block.

New Moon Quilt: Getting Closer

Angie is keeping us well updated with her progress in getting the quilt finished. Her update this afternoon was, I think I only have the cake and paws left to do. Then the sashing.

Here are the latest blocks she's finished. This is the last page of Joyce's Calendar block, the only part of it that is attached on all four sides and needs quilting. The October, November and December pages flip up, adding a great 3-D effect to the quilt. Angie quilted in some beautiful snowflakes to accent this page.

Elizabeth's Proposal block. Angie quilted in a swirl pattern than mimics the black background fabric in this block. It is difficult to get a good photograph of the black fabric, so there is a sample of it under the block. This is the same black fabric that was used in the Stephenie Meyer quilt.

Elizabeth's Jacob's Sun block with rays quilted in.

Angie's Meteor block with an amazing star pattern quilted in.

New Moon Quilt: Less is More

I didn't think it was possible, but Angie has outdone herself, yet again! Here are the most recent blocks she's finished quilting, with a word from her on each one.

Iris' Flight Home block
I have been avoiding doing Iris's blocks....they are just so great and detailed. I was afraid I was going to do something to mess that up or take away from it or something. So I dediced less was more. I just highligted the trees and clouds. I am kind of taking the same approach on the 'As if I Never Existed' block.

I wanted to keep the colors from the ribbons and just accent.

Elizabeth's Motorcycles block
Again...less is more on this one too...there is such amazing embroidery on this one, I wanted that to be what you see. So I accented the trees and the large tires on the bikes. I may do alittle more if time permits.

November 11, 2009


Hi, I’m Joyce. I have been married for 29 years to Keith, and we have 5 children and a daughter-in-law ranging in age from 26 to 15. The youngest are twins. I also have a wonderful new grandson. I work part-time doing Youth Ministry and have started back to school to work on my Master’s degree.

I have been quilting for about 14 years, and have mostly made memory quilts. My favorite was the one I made for my Mother-in-law’s birthday a few years ago. With the help of her sibs and kids, we gathered pictures from throughout her life. I embroidered a center ‘title’ square with her name and favorite flower. It was a full, bed-sized quilt. When she got it, they laid it out on the living room floor, and she and her sisters were crawling all over ooohing and ahhing over all the pictures and memories.

I came to the Twilight Series through my daughter. She had read the books for school and would suddenly read a line out loud or shout when something exciting happened. In March, I injured my knee and had to have surgery, so I read the books while I healed. I couldn’t get enough and was glad to find TwilightMoms , and, then, the Quilt for Stephenie Meyer thread. It has been so much fun to meet other creative and fun people who enjoy so many of the same things and work so well together.

I made the following squares for the SM quilt: Bella’s Truck, Bella’s Bracelet, Renesmee’s Locket, and The Other Jacob.

For the New Moon quilt, I made the top of the Meadow, Calendar months, and Bella’s Broken and Mended Heart.

For the Eclipse Quilt, I made the Penguins, Trip to Florida, High School Days, and Nature blocks.

New Moon Quilt: More Machine Quilting

After a long day at the machine, Angie wows us again with more quilted blocks! The details she adds as she quilts accent the blocks and make the quilt even more amazing.

Angie's Phone Call block with stippling throughout the phone.

Wanda's Japanese Lanterns block with a hearts and ribbons pattern.

Angie's Cliff Diving block with weather, land and water details quilted in.

Wanda's Birthday Gifts block accented with stitched circles.

Here is the quilt after it has been rolled on the quilting table. The soft and furry minkee backing fabric is visible along length of the quilt as it has been rolled over, pulling the center of quilt to an area of table where Angie can work on it.

New Moon Quilt: Machine Quilting in Progress

Angie has given us a little peek at the progress she's making on the quilt. She's got three blocks quilted and a bit of the border started. Here is Cat's Paper Cut block with an amazing scallop design quilted around the edges.

This is Jerri Lynn's Conversation Hearts block, quilted with an all-over heart design.

Elizabeth's Movie Theater block with accent in-the-ditch stitching.

And here's a look at the border in progress, quilted with wolf paws!

New Moon Quilt: On the Table

Angie is keeping us updated on the quilt: it is loaded on the just trying to figure this out. What to do, what to do??? I am using a brown bottom line on the fur side. But that is as far as I have gotten with thread selection.... We're all excited with the news that the quilting is about to commence. And we're excited to reveal this fun detail too . . . the back is furry! Angie picked out a great piece of brown minkee swirl that will look amazing when quilted and feels so soft when you wrap yourself up in it. With all the wolves in New Moon, we thought it only fitting.

November 10, 2009

New Moon Quilt: The Quilt Top in Progress

Angie, our assembler/quilter extraordinaire has received all the quilt blocks and is busy getting them put together while juggling kids, her personal quilt business and life. She hopes to have it completely assembled and ready to quilt tomorrow afternoon. And she promises to keep us updated with photos. It is so fun to see all this hard work come together in a tangible way. We've all quilted our little hearts into our blocks and it is really exciting to see them as part of the whole.

I also wanted to re-cap the destiny of this wonderful quilt. Our group announced on August 4, 2009 that we would be making a New Moon themed quilt to be auctioned off at the Utah New Moon Experience in conjunction with the New Moon movie release. Time and materials would be donated by each participant and the entire amount the quilt receives at the silent auction will be donated to Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation, the official TwilightMOMS charity. With just over a week left until our deadline, it looks like our quilt will be finished just in time. Each member of the group has put forth an amazing effort to produce this one-of-a-kind piece of Twilight memorabilia. To quote TQC member, Joyce, "I hope you like the blocks - and potential buyers . . . bid high and bid often!!!!!"

November 9, 2009

New Moon Quilt: It will be as if I'd never existed.

As if I'd Never Existed by Iris

"It will be as if I'd never existed."
Those were the words that stopped my heart cold and sent me into a two week depression the first time I encountered them. I was in such denial for most of New Moon (the whole day it took to read), seriously thought it would only be a day or two then he would be back....a part of me is still shocked each time I read New Moon.

This was not originally my block to complete, nor was it my original idea to use the elements I used, but I'm happy with the results and tried to put my own touches on it.

I Started with the Silver Linings pattern shown here. The skill level is "challenging". Well, that it is! Especially since I didn't follow it exactly because I wanted to show that progression of time from when Edward leaves to when Sam finds Bella. The pattern itself, 10" x 16", came printed on velum. There are 8 subsections that need to be completed first, then each regular section A thru U. Planning ahead was challenging, with those subsections, trying to figure out where to place the lighter grays/greens, then where to start the medium tones, to finally end with a section of blacks.

For the left half, I took a picture of Bella's house used in the movie, printed it out roughly the size that would fit on that space, then just drew the lines directly on the printout.

Miraculously it ended up dividing nicely, with standard sized pieces (no weird eighth's to contend with). I was really happy to find a few fabrics in my stash that I thought were perfect for her house, the green with stars for the stairs and gray with lines and stars for the downstairs curtains (I think of depicting Charlie with stars, for obvious reasons), the roof tile fabric, and the white on cream fabric that I used for the "yellowed lace" curtains of Bella's room. At first I made her house section with just the gray sky but side by side it didn't meld well together, so I took scraps left over from the woods and just fudged on some more trees/leaves bracketing the house. Then I tried to make the ground under the house match up the woods part.

For the wolf I took this aqua wolf magnet that my neighbor (closet Twifan) had brought me from New Mexico and just traced it on solid black fabric. I don't care for the magnet itself, but it sure came in handy for this project! For Bella's truck I printed out the picture from Stephenie Meyer's website (inverted), stuck it on the back of the Lite Steam-a-Seam 2 (my adhesive of choice as you all know) and just cut the pieces out. I was in such a hurry when zig-zag stitching the appliques by machine that I forgot to use stabilizer. But it only puckered up the wolf section slightly, which was a section with lots of seams from the piecing. I also lost the "perfect" headlight buttons I pulled out from my stash two seconds after I'd pulled them out (not an uncommon occurrence for me!), spent a frantic couple minutes looking for them but had to finally put on other buttons or else I wouldn't make it to UPS on time.

For the quote I was concerned about two things, stiffness of printable fabric and not being able to print white/cream letters on an inkjet. My solutions, I used printable silk charmeuse sheet instead of cotton sheet, and I actually scanned my background, typed the text in white over the scanned photo, and printed that on the off white charmeuse. Then I suffered a moment of panic when I thought to help "set it" with bubblejet rinse, and all the ink started to run off! I quickly took it out of that solution and soaked it in Retayne for 20 min instead.

This was definitely the hardest design I've ever had to sew. And to do it in a very short time. And it was the hardest one to give up!

New Moon Quilt: Quotes

Machine Embroidered Book Quotes by Jerri Lynn
(above) Quote from Edward

(above) Quote from Bella

(above) Quote from Jacob

(above) Quote from Alice