Saturday, May 30, 2015

Patchwork Mini Quilt and More

 Things have started to take on the rhythm of summer here...the temperatures are going up quickly, and the calendar is less full with "have to's." And while I'm still trying to catch up from the quilt market whirlwind in April and May, I'm also starting to finish up some projects.

 I pieced this mini "Country Fair" quilt right after I saw Joanna make hers (pattern available from Fig Tree & Company). The other day I had to take something to be quilted for an upcoming magazine project and decided to take this along as well.

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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Patchwork Quilt: Go Four It Update

One of the first works in progress I wanted to finish up this week was my  "Go Four It" quilt designed by Lissa Alexander and published in the issue of American Patchwork & Quilting. I started cutting strips for this quilt back in December and worked on it pretty steadily until I started my market sewing.

 On Tuesday morning I woke up with a plan: I was just going to lay out a few rows and sew them together. A few rows turned into "sew half the quilt," and then "lay out the other half." And well, you know how it goes. I didn't finish by Tuesday night, but an hour of sewing Wednesday morning, and here it is!

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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Works in Progress: Snapshots Quilt Blocks

It sure has been a great feeling to be able to sew! Everything was pretty hectic just before market, so I got behind on a few of my works in progress. This week's plan is to play catch up. First, I tackled my Fat Quarter Shop Snapshots quilt along blocks.

I had fallen behind on block 4, the Puppy Love block, and block 5, the Kindred Kitchen block.

 I love how the puppy block turned out. I'll add buttons for his eyes after my quilt is finished and quilted.

And the apron block...well it just might be my favorite right reminds me of my grandmother who always wore aprons in the kitchen!

I'm getting quite a collection of these blocks (and I am actually finished with block 6 now as well, so I won't be behind for June)!

You can visit the Snapshots Quilt Along main page here where you'll find links to pdf patterns for the first five blocks. You can also find links there to video tutorials with sewing construction hints. is a list of the other bloggers participating in the quilt along!

Camille Roskelley of Thimble Blossoms
Bonnie Olaveson of Cotton Way
Pat Sloan of The Voice of Quilting
Lori Holt of Bee in My Bonnet
Sherri McConnell of A Quilting Life
Melissa Corry of Happy Quilting
Thelma Childers of Cupcakes N' Daisies
Pam Viera-McGinnis of Pam Kitty Morning
Anne Sutton of Bunny Hill Designs Stephanie Kendron of The Modern Sewciety
Natalia Bonner of Piece N Quilt
Greg Jones of Grey Dogwood Studios
Jessie Fincham of Messy Jesse
Sondra Davison of Out of the Blue Quilts
Angie Wilson of Gnome Angel

I'll be back soon with more of my works in progress sewing! Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Quilt Fabric: Sample Spree!

 Happy Tuesday! Today's post is kind of a Quilt Market continuation...I thought you might want to see what I purchased at Sample Spree.

 Sample Spree is an evening event at quilt market where manufacturers and designers sell their products (often at wholesale or below) to shop owners and attendees so that samples can be made before the fabrics arrive in stores (often several months later). 

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Monday, May 25, 2015

Quilt Market Minneapolis Part 4

Today I'm sharing the last of the photos from my International Quilt Market trip.
These photos are a little different than the ones I've been sharing, but I hope you'll find them equally as inspiring!

 After market closed and the booth was taken down and packed into our carry-on's I said goodbye to Minneapolis...this photo was taken from the front of the convention center downtown as I left.

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Saturday, May 23, 2015

Quilt Market Minneapolis Part 3: Inspired

I have quite a few more quilt market photos today, and I wish there were even more. On the last day of market I went to the show a little early and tried frantically to photograph as many of my favorites as I could from throughout the show floor. Of course I didn't have nearly enough time and ended up missing some of my favorites completely. But here is a good collage of the colors and trends I noticed.

My good friend Emily Herrick of Crazy Old Ladies pattern company won the creativity award for her Sodalicious booth. I loved the array of colors and designs.

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Quilt Market Minneapolis Part 2: Moda

Today I'll finish up with the Moda section. There were many lovely booths surrounding the sales tables, but the sales table section was a piece of art in and of itself. The tables were covered with beautiful fabric, and the covered chairs had coordinating bows.

 There were also lots of fun quilt quotes and inspiration photos at the tops of the booth.

 I always love visiting the United Notions section of the Moda area...there are always fun new notions to learn about, and everything is beautifully displayed.

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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Quilt Market Minneapolis Part 1

Happy Thursday (or late Wednesday night if you're reading this right after I post)! The last eight days have been a whirlwind...but a good one! I returned late last night from quilt market and a little mini vacation after market, and I'm excited to share my quilt market photos. I think it will take about three here goes!

 It takes a good part of the day to travel from Las Vegas to Minnesota, so we spent day one traveling and getting settled in. But on day two we were ready to work and spent the morning putting our booth together. One of our quilts, "Star Bright" was hung in the Moda booth directly across from our was so fun to be able to look at it each day!

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Saturday, May 16, 2015

Pattern Jam & A Giveaway

Happy Saturday! Today I'd like to share a fun site with you that will help you best utilize the fabric in your stash. The site is called Pattern Jam, and is the genius of Emily Taylor.

Here is some key information about the site from Emily:
1)  As the founder of, I am passionate about beautiful fabric and bringing this amazing community of quilters together in a platform that is beneficial for everyone!
2) is the only free website that gives quilters the tools to design a quilt AND audition new & upcoming fabric in a pattern (including their own stash via an upload feature coming this summer)
3) is being rebuilt from the ground up to provide an absolutely "seamless" experience for my users!  I want YOUR Feedback about what you'd like to see in contact me at with your input!

The front page of her web site features a YouTube video which will give you all of the information you need to get started using the site. Basically, you can design your own quilt or use a designer pattern found on the site. Then you can preview new and upcoming designer fabric in your chosen quilt pattern (and remember, this summer you'll also be able to upload fabrics from your stash in order to preview how they'll look in your chosen pattern). It's simple and it's free!

When I first spoke with Emily about Pattern Jam last winter, she sent me some of her beautiful Vintage Verona fabrics to play with. I had fun making a simple quilt alternating snowballs and nine-patch blocks.

 I used Moda Snuggles on the back for this it!

 So...I have a bundle of 16 Vintage Verona fat quarters for a giveaway. To enter the giveaway you'll need to do two things:

  1. Create an account on PatternJam, and then send Emily an email from the contact form on the website telling her that you found through A Quilting Life. 
  2. Come back and leave a comment here.
That's all! I'll keep the giveaway open through May 21st so you'll have plenty of time.

Thanks so much for stopping by!

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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

More Bright Sun Sewing

 I'm heading out to Quilt Market today...I'm nervous but happily excited at the same time. Since I won't have any booth photos until later in the week I thought I'd share a little more pre-market sewing. All of these projects will work as booth props but will also be used a lot after market!

 A couple of years ago I made a Carry On! travel bag--you can see it here-- (pattern by Annie Unrein). I love the bag and knew I needed one with Bright Sun, but I knew I wouldn't have time to make it...

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Monday, May 11, 2015

Bright Sun and New Patterns!

Today is the day! I finally get to share a little Bright Sun fabric love and introduce my new patterns. It's kind of crazy to think that the fabric arrived on my doorstep just under two weeks ago...there are quite a few pictures in this post because...well...I love the fabric and the quilts!

 Bright Sun was inspired by our beautiful southwestern sunrise and sunset times of the day. There are beautiful pinks, aquas, turquoise, teals, and sunshine yellows. There are also a lot of wonderful low volume prints...and polka dots (there had to be polka dots).  Bright Sun will debut at International Quilt Market later this week and will be shipping to stores in October.  I'll be sharing more details about all of the different prints and fabrics after I return from Quilt Market.

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Saturday, May 9, 2015

Ikea Patchwork Rug Tutorial

A few weeks ago I received a lovely package of goodies from Ikea with the challenge to make a quilted project. There were lots of fun things in the package including Ikea linens, a pillow cover, sewing kit, knit flower trims, pre-cut home dec weight fabrics, thread, and a lovely textile book with beautiful photos.

 I thought about it and finally decided on something patchwork with the home dec weight fabrics. My daughter saw them and thought they might make a really fun rug for her kitchen.

 So we went through the assortment and picked out 24 squares which I sewed together in 3 rows of 8 squares each.

 The project kind of came together as I sewed. I decided a simple backing would be needed, and since it was going to be used for a rug I didn't add any batting.

 I did stitch in the long seams to keep the front and back together before I added the binding. I pressed all of the seams open to keep everything flat.

 I even had some pre-made grey binding in my stash which worked perfectly for this project.

 I did all of the binding sewing by machine (usually I stitch to the back side by hand, but since this is a rug I figured machine binding was the way to go.

My daughter was super happy with her new kitchen rug. All she needs to do is get a rug pad, and it's ready to go!

Thanks, Ikea for the fun goodie basket and for issuing the challenge to make a project with these goodies!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! Happy Mother's Day to all of the Moms out there!

I'll be back Monday with the first of the Bright Sun fabric posts! Thanks so much for stopping by!
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Thursday, May 7, 2015

Small Quilts

Happy Thursday! I'm almost ready to share everything I've been working on...and it looks like Monday will be my day to share.

In the meantime, I thought it would be a good day to share some photos recently in my in-box...I love seeing your projects with my patterns.

Stick around to the end of this post for a little sneak peek...

 First up is Hildy's version of my mini Bucket List pattern. I love the colors she used for this!

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Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Smitten For Mittens

I took a little break from my Quilt Market Sewing to work on...some adorable Christmas mittens!

Me&MySister have released a new template in their "Makin' It Cute" series.

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Friday, May 1, 2015

Blog Takeover: Designers in Real Life

Hello everyone! I’m Chelsi, Sherri's daughter, and I’m excited to be a part of the blog takeover with my dad! My mom has been sewing for Quilt Market for quite some time now, but this is the first time that she will be sewing as a Moda Designer! I first must begin by saying what wonderful and talented women are in the quilting universe! At a very young age I knew how much quilting meant to my mom, and though I am not much of a sewer, I have a deep appreciation for her hard work and inspiring passion that goes into her quilting. She has managed to touch so many people’s hearts, but I hope all of you know how much you have truly touched hers. I have had the opportunity of seeing the glistening tears of happiness in her eyes as she reads your comments or the smile when she is able to help someone accomplish something! That said! I have some fun things to share about our quilt market prep, and I am excited to give you an inside look of what has been going on around here over the past few days!

I woke up this past Tuesday morning, got dressed, fed my babies, and rushed to my parents’ house as quickly as I could. Why? Because I knew we would be receiving two very big boxes filled with our first fabric line from Moda, and I wasn't going to miss it! Note: when we got our strike offs, I was an hour away from home and let’s just say my mom was more than tempted to rip those boxes open before I got there. My dad caught her peeling the box open to take a peep, and luckily he took it and hid it from her before I arrived! Anyways! I got to my parents’ house and we sat waiting around for it all morning until my mom got a blank look on her face. Then she bolted towards the front door. Like COME ON, the woman has magical hearing powers, I swear. The UPS man literally hadn't even gotten out of his truck yet as me, my dad, and mom all bounded through the hallway towards the poor man who was yet to be mauled. Poor guy never stood a chance. We opened the front door and all started waving and smiling at him like we were a perfectly normal family giving him the greatest greeting of his life. Sweet man must have thought we were crazy. Want to meet him? He's so tall! Let's call him Steve since I didn't catch his name!

 So after we made "Steve" hold those heavy boxes for 1 minute too long, he left in a hurry (I'm pretty sure I heard him burning rubber, couldn’t get that UPS truck out of park fast enough) and we took them into the house to be opened! And then the madness began! I stayed at my parents until almost midnight! I pulled the fabrics we needed for the patterns my mom created, and she cut while I folded and put them in their respectful piles. The system was working grand, and we turned on Pandora and sang our hearts out while we snipped, trimmed and folded away. By the end of the day we had six quilts cut out and ready to go to the sewing room! By the end of the night we were all acting pretty silly. We may or may not have had a dance party...or two in between the cutting and folding. It was so much fun!

We have only had our fabric for a few days now, and we are both busy getting things ready for market in Minneapolis, but as much as the stress starts to creep in, we really are having fun in the process. Of course I get to go home every night while my dad has to watch his every step it seems like. Feed her, give her space, and don’t make too much noise. Sound about right mom?

Well, so as this takeover comes to a close (and I am so sorry! I wish I could share every piece of fabric with all of you, but that is coming soon I promise!) I just want to say how grateful I am to the woman who showed me that being creative is important. Even though she scolded me for coloring on her newly painted walls as a child, she still gave me paint sets and art supplies in my stocking every year for Christmas. I am glad my dad has a few funny things to say because I can't help but write words of gratitude to all of you, to the Moda family, and to one of my closest friends, my mom.
The Lab and I have a few things to say--this is our opportunity to speak during this blog takeover.  Here's the deal...for the last few years I thought I understood market. The Lab and I had a clear understanding: stay out of the way, keep your mouth shut, and do as you are told. We look both ways before we enter the hallways from the various rooms of the house for fear we might be trampled, hollered at, or stared at as she travels from her sewing room to one of the quilt lay out areas in the house. But...we learned to listen to the beat of the driver of the Janome. If that locomotive was moving, we could make a run for it. If it was quiet, we knew she was on the move and we would stand our ground. We knew we were not allowed to touch the fabric, and we knew that at any minute we could get the stare. But, we had no idea of the difference between piecing quilts for others and preparing for market as a Moda designer. Then, along came Chelsi.  We've always known the weeks before market would be very interesting. But we had no idea what it would be like dealing with two women preparing for market.

We are a little confused now because things are a little more intense than they were for prior markets. Through all of the fabric cutting, and through all of the coordination of those who are helping--we don't see her as much.  We miss our Mom and happily invite Chelsi into this pre-market madness. I'm not sure Mr. Brown (Steve) will ever deliver here again. My dog goes and stands out side the sewing room, asking her to stop. I tell him to stay away from the sewing room, but I believe he is safer in the halls than I am. Yes, it's crazy, but really, I think it's pretty cool.  Thanks to all of those who have helped my dear wife. It is wonderful to see her as a part of Moda family.

The rest of today's blog takeovers can be found below...and you can go here for a complete list of all the blog takeovers this week.

Jan PatekJan Patek
Betsy Chutchian – Betsy Chutchian
Laurie Simpson – Minick & Simpson
Sandy Gervais – Pieces From My Heart
Corey Yoder – Little Miss Shabby

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