Monday, March 30, 2009

"Straight Seams, Perfect Points, and Finished Quilts"


I finished my pinwheel quilt and have named it "Pinwheel Picnic." Attending Carrie's trunk show last week really motivated me to name my quilts! I used 25 of my pinwheel blocks along with 36 squares from a Snippet's charm pack. Just a bit of white and a bit of a Snippet's floral were the only other things I needed! Everytime I look at this quilt I feel good...because those pinwheel blocks could have been scraps in the garbage can!
Also, in my last post I didn't show all of my goodies from Carrie. She was so very nice and tucked the goodies on the left into my bag as I was leaving! How fun it was to get home and find the patterns, a ruler, and a project bag! The book on the right I took along to the show to have signed. Here is what she wrote:



What a great wish for all quilters...I've had that phrase in my mind all weekend.."straight seams, perfect points, and finished quilts!"
This week I've been working on some fun things...only a few posts to go before my 100 post giveaway! And just a hint...if you've thought of becoming a follower of my blog...this might be a good time to do so...I'm thinking of extra chances in the giveaway for regular readers and followers!
Happy Sewing!


Friday, March 27, 2009

Miss Rosie's Quilt Co.

Yesterday I afternoon I traveled to Scrap Apple Quilts in St. George, Utah to attend a dinner and trunk show. The dinner was spectacular and was prepared by Shirley, the owner of Scrap Apple. Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosie's Quilt Co. drove from Arizona (enduring the terrible traffic nightmare that currently exists from Hoover Dam through Las Vegas) to spend a few days in St. George teaching classes. I had originally planned to attend the trunk show and take two days of classes from Carrie and was really disappointed when the dates changed and I wasn't able to atttend the classes (I'm doing tables for a luncheon for 250 women Saturday and will be decorating Friday). I was thrilled, though to get to attend her trunk show and lecture.

Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosie's Quilt Co. fame on the left and me on the right!

Carrie is a terrific speaker and so incredibly knowledgeable; it was fascinating to listen to her lecture on scrap quilts! Of course I was taking pictures and taking notes, trying to absorb everything I could! Every quilt was amazing, and every quilt illustrated a point in her discussion on scrap quilts!

Near the beginning of her presentation Carrie told us, "Scrap quilts are more of a reflection of who you are and what you like than any other quilt." I loved this quote...it really got me thinking about the scrap quilts I've made and what I love about them.



Carrie spoke about contrast, value, scale and pattern and asked us to question ourselves concerning what we like in scrap quilts. She also spoke on choosing background fabrics for quilts; her quilts were the perfect visual aids to explain each concept we discussed.



I could have sat and listened for hours and hours...and kept thinking how lucky those ladies were who were going to be in the classes this weekend!

Carrie shared delightful anecdotes about the naming of several of her quilts, and she also shared favorite tools and quilt resources with us.

The two quilts below are made from the same pattern and illustrate beautifully how a background fabric and fabric choice can completely change the look and feel of a quilt.

Carrie also brought many of her Schnibbles quilts along...below, "Hot Cross" is on the left made from Patisserie (I have to get this pattern), and "Good Fortune" (this one is already on my table to make) made from Legacy is on the right. I also got to see the original "State Fair" quilt...every quilt was gorgeous!

Carrie had some fun giveaways for participants, including books, patterns, kits, and project bags...we all received her Schnibbles "Tuffets" pincushion pattern. Of course I bought one of her books and she very kindly signed it for me. If you don't already read her blog, you can find it here. Her blog is as delightful as she is...she shares wonderful recipes, quilting tips, and her inspiration and process for designing her quilts.
When I left last evening I was motivated to sew every Miss Rosie's pattern I own...I also left with an appreciation for scrap quilts and a desire to make some more scrap quilts! Thank you Carrie for a delightful and informative presentation!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

More Patisserie and More Pinwheels...


Before I had even finished my first bag made from Nanette's "Mixed Bag to Quilt" pattern I knew I would be making more; I also knew that I would be making one from Patisserie...problem was Patisserie wasn't available yet in yardage, so I patiently waited. Now, a few fat quarters and a yard later my bag is finished. And the zipper bag I made the other day is perfect to go inside (a matching checkbook cover will follow soon)!
The front and back are different...and I had trouble narrowing it down to just 12 fabrics to use! I've also been experimenting with a Moda Bake Shop product, the Turnover. I love them...they are a real time saver as are all of the Moda pre-cut goods.


I purchased Joanna's booklet The Pastry Shoppe which has six different Turnover patterns and started the quilt "Cherry Turnovers." Seven blocks are finished...eighteen to go. I love these quilt blocks...they go together wonderfully...and pinwheels just might be my new favorite block!


Oh, and a little update on my leftover pinwheel blocks from Nanette's "All Dressed Up" quilt. They've found a home in a new quilt of my own design which is coming together quite nicely. It might have been finished by now...but somehow about 20 rectangles of Kona "white" ended up in a quilt pieced entirely from Kona "snow." (Note to self: keep the Kona "white" and "snow" clearly separated)!



Have a wonderful day...and I hope you get to sew!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tea Swap Mail


I've recently participated in the "Time for Tea" swap hosted by Stephanie of Loft Creations. The picture above shows some of the goodies I sent Peg (you can see her post about them here). I'm not a tea drinker...but since I was very young I've always loved tea things...tea sets, tea pots, tea towels, and especially tea cups....so I really looked forward to this swap! Stephanie was a wonderful hostess and provided lots of inspiration for the swappers; we all came to love her "Tea Time Tuesday" posts where she shared lovely tea linens, stitcheries, teacups and teapots. Yesterday I received my package from my wonderful partner Peg of Happy in Quilting (we didn't know we had each other until we'd both mailed our packages). It was fun to find out that Peg was my partner because I was already reading her blog regularly; Peg is a wonderful quilter who also does lovely stitchery!


Inside the package, everything was wrapped in lovely fat quarters...gifts in and of themselves. Peg sent a beautiful teacup picture frame, a Chookyblue card (the photography is stunning), some instant drink mixes, and the famous Tim Tam candy I've been seeing on blogs (yes, as of this morning it's officially gone...we thought it was gone last night, but younger son hid a piece for part of his breakfast)!


Peg also sent a lovely table runner...this table runner is the definition of loveliness. I had to catch my breath when I opened it. Four of the blocks have beautifully stitched tea cups. The fabrics are gorgeous, and Peg's workmanship is perfection. I even took a picture of the back...I love the backing fabric!




Also, the table runner has prairie points! I love prairie points! I had never made prairie points until I made my gifts for Peg...but I loved making them and want to put some on a quilt again soon (maybe I'll make this one from Jodi's tutorial). Peg, each and every gift was perfect; thank you so very much!
Hope you all get to sew today!

Monday, March 23, 2009

All Dressed Up and Patisserie

Since Saturday was National Quilting Day I was determined to sew...I did a lot of yard work Friday so I wouldn't feel guilty...and the family was busy watching either the NCAA tournament (the guys) or Twilight (younger daughter)! First on my list was to finish my All Dressed Up quilt from Nanette's pattern. This quilt is going to hang in my sewing room, so I only made 20 dresses and adjusted the borders accordingly. I really enjoyed making each and every dress; this is one of those quilts that is so much fun to work on that you kind of don't want to finish!


When I went to put my border on, the new fabric that I had purchased just didn't seem to "go." I was so excited when a Michael Miller reproduction that I had purchased 4 or 5 years ago went perfectly...I had purchased this fabric for another quilt border and even cut the strips only to decide it didn't work then...so it was a great thing that I was finally able to use this fabric!



I finished the rest of my pinwheel blocks and now have 34 darling pinwheels for another quilt.


I also finished block ten of the Fat Quarter Shop's Designer Mystery Block of the Month (this month's was designed by Camille). And...I started playing with Patisserie...I've decided Patisserie is my new favorite color. I don't remember the last time I loved a fabric line so much. I started out making a couple of little bags with some of my Moda Honey Bun strips...love those pre-cut strips!

And, to motivate me even more to work with Patisserie...Joanna's new book arrived Friday...full of wonderful projects and inspiration. I've started working on a couple other projects with Patisserie...and have some freezer paper hexagons ready to go as well!

Thanks so much for stopping by and for all the kind comments! Have a great day!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Finishes!

I've been sewing bindings on like crazy this week! My "State Fair" Schnibbles quilt is finished and hanging in my entryway! It's so bright and cheery...I smile each time I walk by!


I also finished my "Be Attitudes" quilt from the book by Nancy Halvorsen. I finished the piecing and machine applique' on this quilt nearly a year ago, but just got it back from the quilter last week. This was my second quilt to do using machine applique'. I really love hand applique'...but some quilts are just suited for machine work!



Here are some close ups of the blocks. I love the snowman...and who could be mad at that puppy?


"Be grateful" and "Be Positive" were two of my favorite blocks to do. There are days I can really sympathize with that ant!


I think these final four were my favorites too!


Oh, and guess what...this was my 90th post...only 10 more until a GIVEAWAY! I hope you have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Quilter's Journal

I've been so inspired by these two posts (go here and here) that I thought I might do some similar posts occasionally.


Outside my window my favorite flowering plum tree is blossoming beautifully; spring is here, and it must be savored because summer comes too quickly.

I am thinking about what I'm going to make with these 50 wonderful feedsack squares I got from Glenna...the possibilities are endless!
I am thankful for the feel and the texture of cloth, the hum of my sewing machine, and the serenity of hand stitching.
One of my favorite things is my great grandmother's treadle sewing machine. (I know, I know, it needs a little quilt on top...I just have to make the perfect one)!

This week I'm looking forward to applique', binding, cutting, and piecing.
I thought I'd share some of my favorite new fabrics...from the line Patisserie. I was lucky to find a sale the other day...3 yards for $23...I thought that was a great price for a brand new Moda line! I've already started a couple of projects...more on those later!

I'm dreaming about the wonderful new book by Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree Quilts? It's called Fresh Vintage Sewing, and I can tell it's going to be a "must have!" For a peek inside this wonderful book, check out Joanna's blog!
Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Jelly Roll Placemats

I've been thinking a lot lately about how versatile a Moda Jelly Roll really is...and I've come up with a little list of things you can do with a Jelly Roll. But first I'd like to share my quick and easy Jelly Roll placemats. My inspiration for these placemats came from Camille's Moda Bake Shop table runner...Camille used a charm pack for her runner, and I thought a Jelly Roll would be great for placemats.


I had fun making these out of the "Oh Cherry Oh" Jelly Roll I won in the Moda FabricMatcher contest for the month of December.

For 4 placemats you will need a minimum of thirteen jelly roll strips (if you'd like to make your placemats even cuter and scrappier...cut 18 jelly roll strips in half and use 9 of those half strips along with 4 full-sized strips). You will also need 1/2 yard for binding the four placemats and 1/2 yard to back them (or use one fat quarter to back each placemat). If you would like to add ric rac trim down the sides, then also get 3 yards of 5/8" ric rac. Your finished placemats will measure 12 1/2" x 16 1/2" finished.

If you are using 9 whole strips, begin by cutting them into 18 half strips (if you are using the 18 half strips cut from 18 different whole strips then this step is already completed). Now pair the strips up into groups of two and sew together along the long edges. Press to one side when sewing is complete.


Now cut all of your two strip units into 5" long segments. After this step you will match each 5" segment with a 5" segment made out of two different fabrics. You will place these segments right sides together, nesting seams and sewing along both 4 1/2" sides. This is the same method used in my table topper tutorial and which comes from this Moda website handout.


I used the chain-sewing technique to make the sewing of these segments go quickly. I didn't even cut them apart after sewing on one side...I just flipped them over and began chain-sewing the other side.

Now you cut each segment in half, creating two four-patch blocks with each cut.


Press the four-patch blocks open, and you will have 36 four-patch blocks. Use 9 four-patch blocks for each placemat. Sew into three rows, and then sew your rows together.

You have now completed the center of your placemat. I really like this method for quickly making a scrappy "checkerboard."

Using one full Jelly Roll strip for each placemat, cut two pieces equal to the measurement of the left and right sides of your placemat (I measured down the middle and made both side strips this length).


Sandwich your placemat top, batting, and backing and quilt as desired. If you want to add ric rac, then position the ric rac over the seams between the side strips and the checkerboard middle and sew the ric rac onto the placemat.


Attach your binding and your placemats are done! A Jelly Roll with 40 strips will make 12 placemats...I can't wait to make some 4th of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas placemats for myself and for gifts!
Oh, and here are my 15 other ideas of what you can do with a Moda Jelly Roll:
1. Make strip sets for 9-patch blocks. 2. Make strip sets for 4-patch blocks. 3. Make strip sets and use for any zipper bag or tote pattern you might have. 4. Make 2 1/2" squares to use as corner triangles. 5. Cut into 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" rectangles...use with 2 1/2" squares to make "flying geese" blocks. 6. Sew together the strips to make a scrappy back. 7. Make framed 9-patch blocks. 8. Make "keyhole" quilts. 9. Make a "coin" quilt. 10. Sew strip sets, then cut at 45 degree angles to make triangles. 11. Make "Log Cabin" blocks. 12. Make "piano key" borders. 13. Make potholders, coasters, or placemats. 14. Use strips to frame or sash blocks or rows of blocks. 15. Make 1/2 square triangles (you'll need a special ruler, template, or paper).
I have a lot to share this week...happy sewing...and I'll be back soon!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A Tisket A Tasket...I've Been Working on Baskets!

I'm really enjoying Anne's "Tisket a Tasket" Block of the Month...and last weekend I finished my March block! You might notice that my bunny doesn't have a tail...I thought it would be fun to pick up a little pom pom for a tail the next time I get to the store (and I need to pick up some ribbon for his bow as well). The buttons I have picked out and will add after quilting. I am starting to put the buttons/trims for each block in labeled snack bags so that I'll be able to get everything together at the end.


I also finished up another basket I've been working on. This basket is part of my Leanne's House quilt by Leanne Beasley.



As soon as I finished it, I was able to stitch block three together...and I'll be on to block four!


I've got plenty of quilty things to keep me busy this weekend (might have to do a little bit of yard work, though)...but first I'll concentrate on finishing my tutorial so I can post it next!
Happy Sewing!