Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Checkerboard & Squares

I call the pattern for this one Checkerboard & Squares.  I haven't actually come up with a name for the individual quilt yet.  It is machine pieced and machine quilted (by Front Porch Quilt Shoppe).  Melanie has asked me to write a pattern for it.  Hopefully I will get around to doing that soon.  The quilt finishes at about 42 inches square.  I used some of the extra jellyroll strips on the back to make the backing wide enough so that I didn't have to buy extra yardage.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Grow! jellyroll baby quilt

I will be donating this little quilt to the Methodist Church where my quilt guild used to meet.  They always give a quilt to the babies that are baptized there.  I machine quilted it myself, quilting in the ditch around the two borders and in between the rows.  These are so quick and easy to make. They make great charity quilts or gifts. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Watermelon Tourmaline quilt top

Here is my latest effort toward finishing up last year's quilting to-do list.  This top fulfills the "make a batik quilt" item on the list.  It is the quilt that I had in mind last year when I added that item to my to-do list.

The quilt pattern comes from Eleanor Burn's book, Quick Trip Quilts and is made from batik fabrics that I ordered from Keepsake Quilting's catalogue.  For a trip around the world quilt it was really fun and easy to make.  Even though there are lots of small pieces in the quilt, you don't sew any short seams.  It is strip pieced, of course, because it is an Eleanor Burns quilt, and it comes together really quickly.  I highly recommend the book if you are looking to make a trip around the world quilt.

The inspiration for the quilt was a trip to Maine that we took several years ago, in 2009.  When we were in Bar Harbor we went into a little jewelry shop where they had a lot of tourmaline gemstone jewelry.  Tourmaline is the official gemstone of the state of Maine.  They showed us some bi-color tourmaline that was popular, but expensive, called watermelon tourmaline that was pink and green.  I thought it was very pretty, but we didn't buy any.  Here is a picture of what it looks like.
I decided to make a watermelon tourmaline quilt instead.  It took me quite a while to get around to it, but I finally did it.  Well, I finally pieced the top anyway.  I still need to decide what I am going to do about the quilting.  Decisions, decisions. . .

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Christmas Ornament

This year for our quilt guild Christmas party we are supposed to bring a handmade Christmas ornament to exchange.  I searched around on Pinterest and found this cute little Christmas tree ornament made out of yo-yos.  I searched through my Christmas fabrics and found several nice green fabrics to use, bought some jingle bells, beads, and ribbon, and put this little guy together in no time. 

I have a set of nesting biscuit cutters that worked really well for the different sized circles.  Five out of the seven yo-yos are from the biscuit cutter set.  I had to find a couple of bowls to make the larger circles because I wanted my tree to be a little taller.  It was really easy, quick and fun to make.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

The Grandmother Sewing Begins

My middle son is expecting his first child in April, and she will be my first grand-baby.  We just found out last week that the baby is going to be a girl, so I can start sewing for her.  I found a pattern on Pinterest for a burp cloth that used flannel and chenille fabrics.  When I went to the quilt shop I bought some chenille to try it out.  I think it turned out good, but I kinda wish the chenille was a little thicker/closer together.  Before I make any more, I am going to let the parents-to-be look at it and see if they like the feel of the fabrics.  They love dogs, so I'm sure the flannel print will be a hit.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Bear in the Mountains - finished!

Here is the finished quilt that I made for our priest who is leaving us early next month.  I machine quilted it, quilting in the ditch around the individual paw blocks and around the mountain blocks.  I also quilted down the center of each mountain block to keep within the quilting distance requirements.  And I quilted in the ditch along the border seam.  As you can probably tell, I added a hanging sleeve to the back so that he can hang it on the wall (but that is my wall, not his).

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Blue Roses

This is the quilt that I made in order to be able to have something quilted in the King Tut De Nile thread.  I saw the thread at the quilt shop and told the owner that I really wanted to make something that color so that I could have it quilted in that thread. 

When I saw this fabric I knew it would work.  The fabric is from the Christine line from Benartex by Eleanor Burns.  The top is mostly two charm packs with some yardage for the border and for a couple of 5 inch squares to make the diagonal rows work out right. 

The quilting design is Ribbons and Roses and the quilt finished 45 x 55 inches.  I don't know what I will do with it, but I think it turned out really nice.  Below is a closeup of the label.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Completed 2016 Moda top

Here is a picture of my finished top for our Moda class this year.  It makes a quilt for a twin sized bed.  I think it turned out fun and bright, just like I was hoping.  I am glad that it is finally finished. 

I don't know if I am going to do the Moda class next year or not.  The plan at the moment is to do the Gypsy Wife quilt.  I think it could be a neat quilt, but it also looks like a LOT of work.  With my first grand-baby scheduled to appear in early April, I'm not sure that I am willing to commit myself to that much work.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Bear in the Mountains

This is my latest quilt design.  I designed it as a wall hanging to give to my priest who will soon be leaving our parish for a new call.  His nickname is "Bear," he is originally from eastern Tennessee, and he loves the mountains.  So I designed a quilt using bear paw blocks and delectable mountain blocks to give to him as a going away present. My original design didn't have the bear paw blocks in the corners.  It was just solid blocks of the background fabric.  But I accidentally didn't buy enough background fabric to cut blocks that size, so I came up with the idea to add the bear paws and I think I like it better that way.

I will be quilting it myself, and I haven't decided if I will machine quilt it or hand quilt it.  I need to get it quilted quickly, as his last day with us is December 4th, so machine quilting is the most likely outcome.

And as something of a happy accident, I think it has a somewhat Native American feel to it, and he is also part Cherokee Indian.  I hope he will like it.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Moda Row for October and finished quilt center

The final row for our Moda quilt this year was the Mosaic block row.  It has 10 blocks at 6 inches each.  It really wasn't that difficult to put together.  We were also supposed to join all of the rows together, with the spacer sashings, and add the first narrow border.  Next we have to make 4 pinwheel blocks for the corners, and add them along with the final borders.  It is almost done!  Hurray!

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Two from One!

These two baby quilts are made from the same jellyroll - Grow! from Me and My Sister.  I came up with the plan for the bottom quilt first, but it was going to leave several strips left unused, even with planning to use some for the binding and some on the back.  I figured out that I would have 13 strips left over, which was the perfect amount to make top quilt (I've made one like the top quilt before).  I pulled out the strips that I wanted to use for the top quilt and actually made it first.  Then I used what was left to make the bottom quilt.  In fact, one strip is partially in the top quilt and partially in the bottom quilt.

I'm really happy with how both quilt tops turned out.  They look very different from each other.  I'm glad that I pulled out all the darker purples and didn't use any in the bottom quilt. I really like the pastel look of the bottom one and I think the dark purple would have detracted from that.

Friday, September 09, 2016

Moda Row for September

This month our row for the Moda class was sailboats -- ten of them.  I can't say that it was fun, or that I necessarily like the outcome, but I'm definitely glad that it is finished.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Falling Petals

My cat, Cleopatra, is modeling this quilt.  It is made from Ellie Ann fabric using Missouri Star Quilt Company's Falling Charms pattern.  I also had it quilted by Missouri Star Quilt Company.  I went with the name Falling Petals because the charms that are falling have flowers on them.

Monday, August 15, 2016

After the Storm

Here is the Binding Tool Star quilt all finished and in place on my son's new bed in his apartment in Tuscaloosa.  I like to give quilts names that are also song titles.  My son chose "After the Storm" by Mumford & Sons, because his last quilt was a Storms at Sea pattern and this one comes . . . after.

Saturday, August 06, 2016

Moda Row for August

This month's row was a real pain to join together.  The points that needed to match were extremely bulky.  I got it together as best I could, but I decided that "perfection" was not going to happen, so I'm just trying to not worry about it.  The operative word here is "trying."

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Christmas Garden

This is my most recent finished project.  I finished the binding on my way home from our trip to New Jersey to visit family.  This is the first quilt that I have made that is for my own bed.  It is for the Christmas season, so I won't actually be using it anytime real soon, but at least it is finished.  Also, it completes one of the things on my quilting "to-do" list from last year.

I decided to call it Christmas Garden, because it was made from a block called Nordic Garden and the focus fabric was poinsettias.  Seemed appropriate for a Christmas garden to me.

Friday, July 08, 2016

Patriotic Bento Box Baby Quilt

Last year I made a patriotic quilt out of Star Spangled Bandana fabric using a Bento Box pattern that I found online.  (I called the quilt Fireworks!)  When I started making the quilt, I thought that I would make it a little larger than the size that I finally went with, so I had three blocks left over.  I wanted to do something with the leftover blocks, so I bought some more fabric in the same line, cut three more 2-1/2 inch strips (the original was made with a jelly roll), and voila, a patriotic baby quilt.

It measures 36 x 48 inches, which seems like a good baby quilt size, or I suppose that it could be used as a lap quilt by someone in a wheelchair.  It might be a good size for that, I'm not really sure.  I also still need to decide what I'm going to do about the quilting.  I'm not sure if I want to quilt it myself, or have it quilted.  Ah, decisions, decisions. . .

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Andouille Quilt in Cool Blues

This quilt top gets me yet another step closer to meeting my quilting goals for the year.  One of the goals was to  make a quilt from one of the quilting books that I got for Christmas in 2014.  This pattern comes from one of those books, Jelly Roll Jambalaya Quilts by Jean Ann Wright.  The pattern is called Andouille Quilt and the original is made in warm shades of red, orange and yellow.  I wanted something cooler, so I went with cool blues.  The pack of "2-1/2 inch strips" that I used was called "Artisan Spirit - Shimmer Blue Lagoon" from Northcott Fabrics. 

The reason I put 2-1/2 inch strips in quotes above is because they weren't really 2-1/2 inches wide.  They weren't even consistently the same width within each strip.  Maybe a couple of strips were 2-1/2 inches wide.  Several, if not most, were only 2-3/8 inches wide.  That's not a lot of difference, but in a pattern like this it can really add up.  It was frustrating to work with.  I used a narrower seam allowance, and still had to trim the "blocks" to a shorter length than what was given in the directions.  It worked out in the end.  I just wish that pre-cuts were more reliably the size they are supposed to be.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Moda Row for July

This month our assigned row was the Weathervane row.  It is due for the class meeting in July.  I won't actually get to attend the July meeting, because I will be out of town visiting relatives in New Jersey, but my row is ready none the less.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Rainbow Binding Tool Star

This is a wall-hanging sized quilt that I made to test out the binding tool star pattern before I tried it large scale for my son's quilt.  I also wanted to try making a different size star.  In the original pattern, you are told to cut out the shape of the binding tool, which is technically 1/8 of an inch shorter than the size of the square that you are sewing it to, so I wanted to see if it really needed to be an 1/8 inch shorter or not. 

So I tried cutting 6-1/2 inch stripes, trimming it them with the angle at the end of the binding tool, and sewing it to a 6-1/2 inch square.  Then I used 3 pairs of colored strips instead of 4 pairs.  It worked out perfectly.  I added a one inch (finished) inner border and then a four inch (finished) pieced border made from the remaining 2-1/2 inch strips.  It used 12 jelly roll strips in total.

I have no idea yet how to quilt it.  If I went with an all-over quilting design, I don't know what color of thread to use, as black seems a bit harsh for the colored areas.  Also, any one of the colors might look odd in the "other colored" patches.  Oh, well, it can stay in the UFO pile for a while until I figure it out.

Moda Row for June

This month our row for Moda class was made of 6 Wheels blocks.  Each block was 10 inches.  I decided to go with 3 blocks using a complimentary color way and 3 using an analogous color way.  And, of course, once again Mickey Mouse makes an appearance. 

I finished it just in time, too.  I finished it on Tuesday with the class meeting on Wednesday.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Binding Tool Star Quilt

In the fall, my youngest son will be living in an off-campus apartment instead of in the dorm.  This new arrangement allows for him to have a full-sized bed instead of a twin bed.  That, of course, means that he needs a new quilt for the larger bed.

I let him sit down and look through my issues of Block magazine, and he chose this beauty for his new quilt.  The original pattern was a little small for what he needed so we increased the number of blocks from 16 (4x4 layout) to 36 (6x6 layout) and left off the border.  The original pattern called for a jelly roll of fabric, but that wouldn't have been enough for the extra blocks, so I figured up the yardage to cut our own 2.5 inch strips.  He went with me down to the quilt shop and picked out all of the fabric.  I think he did a really good job. 

The finished quilt top measures 96 inches square.  In fact, it would actually fit a queen size bed pretty well, as you can see above with it laid out on my queen size bed. 

Monday, May 30, 2016

Blessed are the Peacemakers

This is my finished quilt from the 2015 Moda class at the Front Porch Quilt Shoppe.  I decided to name it "Blessed are the Peacemakers" (from the Biblical Sermon on the Mount/Be-attitudes), because the book that the pattern came from was called Vintage Quilt Revival and the fabric line I used was called "Piecemakers."  Revival made me think of the week-long special church services from the church of my youth, and piecemakers, of course, made me think of its homophone, peacemakers, and voila, we have the name.

Below is a picture of the label I made for the quilt.  I used a leftover scrap of the background fabric for the main part of the label.  Even though it has a small pattern to it, I thought it would work out fine, and I think it did.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Darling Grannies Quilt

Our extra project at our Moda meeting last month was the Darling Grannies Quilt by Sterling LaBosky from Moda Bake Shop.  It calls for two charm packs and a yard of background fabric.  I happened to already have two charm packs of "Happy Flappers" fabric, and a yard of Kona snow fabric, so I decided to give it a try.  I think it makes a nice lap or child-sized quilt. 

I haven't decided yet what I want to do with it, so I'm not planning to quilt it (or have it quilted) right away.  I already have three quilts out to be long-armed at the moment, and I have a double-bed size quilt to piece for my son, so this one will be waiting for a while, I think.

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Farmer's Daughter Row (2016 Moda)

Today I finished the row of Farmer's Daughter blocks for our Moda class.  I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out.  I noticed that I was gravitating toward yellow fabrics.  I had actually planned to use yellow in a couple more of the blocks until I realized how much yellow the row would have if I did.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

A Study In Scarlet

This is my finished quilt from our guild mystery quilt from 2015.  I decided to name it "A Study in Scarlet" after the first Sherlock Holmes novel.  It seemed appropriate because it was a mystery quilt done in all shades of red (and black, obviously). 

Below is a picture of the label.  It is made from a piece of 2.5 inch strip leftover from making the top.  I thought it would blend better than making it with white or off-white like I normally do.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Peacock Blue Charm Quilt

My latest quilt top, that I finished yesterday.  It is made from two charm packs of Christine (in peacock blue) fabric.  I ended up cutting out two charms from yardage to get the right number of charms in each color to make the pattern that I wanted, so I ended up with 6 unused charms. 

I want to have it quilted in a variegated peacock blue thread that I saw at my quilt shoppe.  The thread is the main reason that I made the quilt.  I saw the thread and decided that I wanted to make a quilt in those colors.  I had to order the fabric online, so I hope that it will actually match the thread.

Thursday, April 07, 2016

Falling Charms in Ellie Ann fabric

Today I finished this quilt top. I bought the charm pack back in 2013. Once I actually started working on it, it only took me 2 days to get it together. It uses one charm pack and some jelly roll strips, but not even close to a whole roll. The pattern came from a Missouri Star tutorial, but the original used more charm packs.
Now I need to get the backing fabric ready and send it off to be quilted.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Completed House Row

This is my first completed row of our Moda quilt this year.  I got it all sewn together yesterday.  This row was divided up over 3 months, but future rows will be completed in a month.  I'm trying to keep it fun and not stress over it too much.  Whimsy is the goal, not perfection.

Saturday, March 05, 2016

Quilting Goals Update

I mentioned earlier that I didn't meet my quilting goals that I set for myself in 2015.  So this year I'm am continuing in my effort to meet those goals, and I've gotten one step closer to meeting one of them - make a quilt for my bed (queen size).

Last year, my intention was to make a queen size Christmas quilt for my bed out of the blocks we made as our guild project for 2014-2015.  I was going to use one of the blocks, repeated 15 times, as an alternate block to make it large enough.  Once I got the blocks made, I didn't like it that way.  I thought it was too busy.  But I still really liked the blocks set together, so I made even more of them - 25 in total.  I added several borders to it and made it into something big enough to fit my bed.

However, in my hurry to get it to the quilt shoppe for quilting, I forgot to take a picture of it.  But here is a picture of one blocks.

I'll post a picture of the whole thing when I get the quilt back from the quilt shoppe, if I remember, and definitely once I get it bound and labeled.

Snowflake candle mat

I finally finished the little candle mat/wall hanging/mini-project from back in August.  I'm not exactly sure when I finished it.  I didn't make a label for it, like I normally do, because it was such a small project.  Then, I forgot to take a picture of it right way too.  I know that I have already shown it at both my quilt guild and my Moda group, so I finished it in either late January or early February.  So here it is, belated, but finally posted.

Friday, March 04, 2016

A Funky Forest

These are the tree blocks for our March Moda meeting.  I wanted to make sure that I got them finished before I started back teaching.  Don't know how much time I will have for sewing during the next couple of months. 

It is my first time teaching on the term/compressed schedule system.  You have to cram a lot of information into a short period of time, so I'm sure I will be pretty busy.  Wish me (and the students) luck!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Extra blocks - finished

I had to cut out extra pieces to use as a demo on how to make the butter churn block and the milking day block for my guild meeting last week.  Today I decided to go ahead and sew those blocks together, so I wouldn't have loose pieces laying around. 

Here they are, together with the original demo blocks.  I might add sashing and a border and make them into a little wall hanging or I might save them for a larger project.  I haven't decided yet.  At least they are no longer just loose patches.

Houses - all in a row

For our Moda class this year, we are doing a row quilt.  The first row consists of houses with tree and star blocks in between.  For this month, we were supposed to make the houses.  Here are mine, all lined up in a row.  I was going for something fun and whimsical this year.  The finished quilt is twin bed sized, so I wanted something that a little kid would (hopefully) enjoy looking at and sleeping under.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Getting Ready for February

February is my month to present the blocks for our current quilt guild project.  This year (and into next year) we are doing blocks from Farm Girl Vintage by Lori Holt.  I chose the Butter Churn block (top) and the Milking Day block (bottom).  I did mine in the 12-inch size.  I would not have wanted to do the milking day block in the 6-inch size, simply because of the pieces that make up the handles on the sides of the milking can.  The little "flippy corner" piece is cut at 3/4 inch square for the 6-inch block.  That is quite small. 

I'm not sure what I'm going to do with the blocks, because I'm not planning to make the guild project quilt this time.  I tried to come up with a pattern to use multiples of just these two blocks, since I have to cut extras to show how the block is put together, but I couldn't come up with one that I liked.  Below are pictures of the blocks with the extra pieces to use in the demonstration.

The Milking Day blocks are identical to each other, but the Butter Churn blocks use different fabrics.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Some thoughts on last year

Looking back at last year (2015), I feel like I had a less than productive year, at least compared to some recent years.  I completed 12 projects, which really isn't that bad, but it is my minimum goal for each year to finish one project per month.  At the beginning of the year, I had set out 5 goals for myself:  hand quilt something, make a batik quilt, make one quilt from the quilting books I got for Christmas (in 2014), donate a quilt to charity, and make a quilt for my bed (queen size).  I only accomplished one of those goals - donate a quilt to charity.

I'm not sure how 2015 got so out of hand.  Not only did I fall behind on my quilting goals, I also fell behind on my reading.  In 2014, I read 22 books, and in 2015, I only read 16.  And the most pathetic thing is that I read 6 out of those 16 in January!  Between September and December, I only read ONE.  Now true, it was 555 page Charlotte Bronte novel, but it still shouldn't have taken me 3 months to read it.

Now, in all fairness, I did accomplish something pretty major in 2015.  Back in August, I started on a Baby Steps to 5K program that was on one of the apps on my phone.  I completed the program and now I walk 5K three times a week and I do it in under 45 minutes.  I also lost over 15 pounds in 2015, through the increased exercise, a gradual calorie reduction process, and trying to eat healthier meals.  I know that took a good bit of my time and energy, and I'm very happy that I did it.  I also want to continue the exercise and healthy eating and make sure it becomes a part of my lifestyle going forward.  But I also want to make sure that I find more time for reading and quilting in 2016 than I did in 2015.  Finding a good balance, that is my goal for 2016.  Wish me luck.

  • Hand quilt something
  • Make a batik quilt
  • Make at least one project from the books I got for Christmas
  • Donate at least one quilt to charity   Sent quilt to Project Linus on 4/17/15
  • Make a quilt for my bed
  • - See more at:

  • Hand quilt something
  • Make a batik quilt
  • Make at least one project from the books I got for Christmas
  • Donate at least one quilt to charity   Sent quilt to Project Linus on 4/17/15
  • Make a quilt for my bed
  • - See more at:

  • Hand quilt something
  • Make a batik quilt
  • Make at least one project from the books I got for Christmas
  • Donate at least one quilt to charity   Sent quilt to Project Linus on 4/17/15
  • Make a quilt for my bed
  • - See more at:

  • Hand quilt something
  • Make a batik quilt
  • Make at least one project from the books I got for Christmas
  • Donate at least one quilt to charity   Sent quilt to Project Linus on 4/17/15
  • Make a quilt for my bed
  • - See more at: