Saturday, March 29, 2014

Craftsy Class Giveaway

 Photo courtesy of Camille Roskelley

 I'm spending this last Saturday of March in my sewing room...catching up on a few things, organizing scraps, and working on pattern writing. So...I thought it might be the perfect weekend to offer a free class from Craftsy! I have had great experiences with my Craftsy classes, and I'm happy to be able to share this giveaway!

 Photo Courtesy of Camille Roskelley

I've taken several of the Craftsy classes and have been absolutely pleased with every one...I always learn some new tip or idea that helps improve my quilting! All of the photos in this post (thanks, Camille) are of quilt projects from Camille's latest Craftsy class, "Playful Piecing Techniques."

 Photo courtesy of Camille Roskelley

 I was able to piece the Piece of Cake (2) sample quilt she needed for filming this class last summer, and it's one of my favorites! This is definitely a beginner project, but the class also walks you through some intermediate projects such as the Field Day quilt with the Dresden blocks pictured at the top of this post.

Photo Courtesy of Camille Roskelley

You'll also learn how to put together this hexagon quilt, Juggle!

So...if you are interested in winning a Craftsy class...just click on the link below. (You'll need to register as a Craftsy member if you haven't already). I'll keep this open through Monday evening. Good luck, and happy Saturday!

Enter to win a Craftsy class!

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Friday, March 28, 2014

Quilt Bee Blocks

After posting the other day about staying caught up with my Block of the Month projects, I decided I'd better get caught up on my Bees Knees Quilting Bee blocks. When I'm behind I always start with the most recent block and move backward...anybody else do that?

So first up was a framed squares block for Amy. It sure was a relaxing block to make...she sent the fabrics, and I just needed to build boxes until I had a 12" finished block! 

 I also made Nedra's block which involved making 24 flying geese and then an easy setting with four smaller squares and a large center square.

Finally I worked on these adorable chunky Dresden blocks for Lori...they are made with her Bake Sale fabrics and are as cute as can be. You might notice that my applique' pins are still in place...just need to stitch these down.

It feels wonderful to get caught up...think I'm going to tackle my over flowing scrap bin next!

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

12" Churn Dash Block Tutorial

A few months I was contacted to see if I'd be interested in sharing a block tutorial for the Patchwork Posse Round Robin. I was asked to pick a favorite block...but that is really too hard for me, so I decided on one of my "standby favorites--" the Churn Dash. This tutorial is for a 12" finished block.

From background fabric (I'm using the Bella Aqua) you'll need 2 squares 5" x 5" and 4 rectangles 2 1/2" x 4 1/2". For the center you'll need a 4 1/2" x 4 1/2" square, and you'll also 2 squares 5" x 5" and 4 rectangles 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" out of a contrast fabric.

First you'll need to make 4 half-square triangle blocks using the 2 background squares 5" x 5" and the 2 contrast squares 5" x 5". Put one background square right sides together with one contrast square. Draw a line down the middle and sew 1/4" on either side of the line. Next, cut on the line and trim so your half-square triangle block will measure exactly 4 1/2" x 4 1/2". You will make 2 hst blocks from each pair. For a full tutorial on my method for making half-square triangles, see this half square triangle tutorial post.

Next you'll need to sew each of the background 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" rectangles to  a contrast 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" rectangle. Press seams toward the background fabric.

You will now have 9 different units to be used to create your churn dash block. Lay out the units as shown in the photo above. Sew the blocks in each row together, pressing toward the rectangle square units in each row. Sew the three rows together, pressing toward the center row.

That's it! You've made a churn dash block!

Not only is this a fun round robin of tutorials...but you can also have a chance to win prizes each week by making the blocks and posting to the Flikr page.
Here is the link to that Flikr page so you can join in! This weeks giveaways are sponsored by Sulky, and there are three chances to win.

Also...congrats to scottylover who is the winner of the April Showers Jelly Roll from Olie and Evie! I'll be sending you an email!

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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Quilt Project Management

I know I've been sharing my Fat Quarter Shop Designer Mystery Block of the Month Quilt since...well...last June when the first block arrived.

I usually do pretty well at keeping up with block of the month projects, but I've tried a few new things with this one that have really helped me stay on track.

 First of all I try to cut out my block the day it arrives. No matter what. I iron the block fabrics, cut them out, and keep them on a project board with the pattern so it's ready to go. Usually I'll also draw any lines necessary for corner-triangle pieces at this time as well. (The block above is block 10...yay)!

 With this quilt I've been trying to work on a few setting pieces each month. Luckily this has been one of those projects that has bits and pieces that can be done in small amounts of time.

This is the first block in the final row of the has left and right sashing attached, and the next block can be sewn to the row as soon as it's finished. I also finished up some other sashing pieces and nine patches to have them ready for the bottom of the quilt.

It's exciting seeing this project almost finished, and it's even more exciting knowing that a lot of my setting has already been finished. Next month, when block 11 arrives, I plan to get my outer borders ready to go.

What do you do to stay on top of ongoing projects?

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Monday, March 24, 2014

A Quilt in Progress

My "Summer Stars" quilt has been one of those projects that has been around for quite a little while. I know it's been longer than a year and quite possibly even two years since I started this quilt. But I'm okay with that because...well...time can be your friend. 

In the beginning I made the scrappy stars from my favorite DS Quilts fabrics.  Quite a while later I decided on the red print alternating blocks. At that time I was really happy with the mix and thought about quilting it and adding a scrappy binding. But every time I went to send it to be quilted something stopped me. A few times I wasn't sure I had the right backing. A couple of other times I just didn't really feel it was finished yet. So it sat (or rather hung in my closet) for quite a while--over a year I'm sure.

Friday night I was looking for something in my stash and happened upon a yard of the gorgeous blue floral in the photo above. Something about the blue and the red reminded me of this quilt, and I decided to audition the fabric for a border. they say...was all it took. One thing led to another and within a short time I had the perfect borders and had picked the perfect backing...all from my stash.

It's headed to my friend Abby for quilting...this is going to be one fun finish!  Oh, and I have picked the binding already too...but I'll keep that to share later. So I've decided it's not always a bad thing to have a long-term work in can be pretty rewarding.

Thanks so much for stopping by! 

NOTE:  If you emailed (or left a comment with your email info) about the vintage suitcase info from last week's post, you should have received information from Jean by now. If you haven't received anything from Jean, please leave a comment with your email address included or email me with your contact information so I can pass it along.  Thank you!

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Saturday, March 22, 2014

Another Mini Quilt and More

The other night I had the wonderful opportunity to do a little pattern testing for my friend Camille. You can imagine how excited I was to see this pattern come to my inbox. I gathered my scrap box, set to cutting, and had a test block made within a short time.

By the next morning I had the top put together...and I could hardly wait to get it quilted and bound. The pattern is "Mini Rise & Shine," and there is a full-size quilt version of it too! I'm definitely going to be making the larger version ASAP too! You can find both patterns in Camille's shop.

My two most recent mini finishes are my favorites (Mini Round and Round pictured on the right).

And...I have some fabric sales to let you know about from Southern Fabric...

Lots of sale inventory including:

 50% off Cuzco by Kate Spain...

 20% off Le Bouquet Francais by French General

And 40% off Road 15 by Sweetwater!

Thanks so much for stopping by!
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Thursday, March 20, 2014

Spring Things: Favorite Fabrics and a Giveaway

 Happy first day of spring! It's my grandmother's birthday today...the one who taught me to quilt, and so I'm looking forward to chatting with her a bit and of course quilting. But since I've been working on quite a few things that I can't share just yet...I thought maybe some pictures of fabric would do! 

Vintage Happy by Lori Holt has just been calling out to me! Lori gifted me some lovely fat quarters when I stopped by for a visit in January...but I just couldn't use them until I picked up some more to go with them!  Look for a project with these very soon!

 And these Japanese florals are calling my name too...

 And these Sweet as Honey fabrics...

But favorite right now is April Showers by Bonnie & Camille. I seriously love this collection. I'm remaking my Shine quilt in this fabric right now, and I'm just loving soon! And I can't bear to run out of any of the fabric either...they are just so much fun...what is a girl to do?! celebrate the first day of spring, my Grandmother's birthday, and my love of April about a giveaway! Rhonda of Olie & Evie, a wonderful Etsy shop is offering a Jelly Roll of April Showers to one of my readers.

Just drop by the shop and have a look around! Rhonda offers half-yard cuts of yardage and is willing to do custom orders. She also offers pre-cuts, patterns, and more. Then come back here and leave a comment mentioning something you liked over at her shop.

That's it...good luck! And thanks so much for stopping by!

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Monday, March 17, 2014

Vintage Sewing Case

Last summer while in Wisconsin for a quilting retreat I was able to visit the Country Sampler Quilt Shop in Spring Green. Not only was the shop incredibly beautiful with gorgeous displays, samples, and fabrics, but there was also a wonderful classroom area in the back of the shop. A class was going on, and several of the women had their sewing supplies in beautiful vintage suitcases which were wonderfully restored with decorative papers on the outside and had beautiful crafted fabric interiors.

 Of course I fell in love with every single case, and was excited to find out that the maker of the beautiful cases, Jean Elliott, was there attending the class!

 I was able to get on Jean's waiting list to have my own case made, and even though I knew it would be several months out, it was absolutely worth the wait. We corresponded via e-mail through the fall, as Jean searched for the perfect pictures with which to create my case.

As you can imagine I fell in love with this as soon as it arrived.

The gathered pocket in the lid actually has two sections for storage. And Jean also made a beautiful pincushion as well.

It's going to be so fun deciding what to store in the case. I mentioned to Jean that I would be posting about her beautiful case. If anyone is interested in having one made, please leave a comment or email me, and I'll forward your information to Jean.

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Happy National Quilting Day!

Happy National Quilting Day! I hope you get to spend some quality time working on a project you love today! I recently finished my "Spell it with Fabric" quilt from the Moda quilt along. Well, it's almost finished...all that I have left to do is hand-stitch my binding.

 This quilt has been so much fun...I know I've shared the blocks along the way, but you know, the quilt just comes to life once it's quilted!

 I do have some favorite letters and some favorite blocks. And I do love the bubble quilting that adds a touch of whimsy to this quilt!

 It was fun to add in the extra blocks, too. I think the flying geese in navy is one of my favorites in the quilt!

And I decided to use the bias navy stripe from April Showers for the binding. Because I'm seriously in love with that fabric right now.

I have quite a list of quilting projects I hope to work on today; after all, it is National Quilting Day!

Thanks so much for stopping by.

PS Congratulations to Becky who won the $50 gift certificate giveaway from Fort Worth Fabric Studio.

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