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Preview: a quilt is nice

a quilt is nice

Updated: 2018-03-19T13:08:55.978-06:00


Stripes Quilt


I'm almost caught up on all my pre-Christmas sewing.  I have one more quilt to share. I guess that means I need to get busy basting my quilt tops. This is a very simple quilt and came together pretty quickly.  I wanted stripes and I wanted to use my solids.  I love how it turned out. I've already given this one away, and forgot to measure anything, but I think the stripes are all 2 inches wide.  I wanted to keep them all the same width for some uniformity, but it would probably look pretty cool with varying width stripes.backing from Cotton and Steel I tried almost every print in my stash for binding and finally settled on this light floral print.  Not sure if it's my favorite, but It worked better than anything else I had!  :)Quilt statsFinished size: (forgot to measure before I gave it away.  I usually make my throw size quilts around 60"x70")Pattern: no pattern, just sewed 2.5 inch strips together.Fabric: front-stash, solids ● binding-not sure name, but it is Art Gallery● backing-Cotton & Steel XOXO chocolate chipBatting:  Warm and White [...]

Kaleidoscope Quilt


More half square triangles, the patterns are endless!  Inspiration came directly from this quilt. For the half square triangles (HST)  I cut 6 inch square and trimmed them to 5.5inches (using this method). There are many methods for HST that make more than 2 at a time, but for some reason I stick to the first way I was taught.for quilting, I stitched in the ditch along each square, nothing fancy here.I like this quilt so much I actually have another to share. :)Quilt statsFinished size: 40in x 45inPattern: see aboveFabric: front-stash ● binding-April Rhodes: Treadle in Tradition (Observer line)● backing-Sarah Jane: Meet the Crew (Out to Sea)Batting:  Warm and White [...]

Scrap Stack Quilt


This is one of my favorite scrap quilt patterns lately...I have another quilt top just like this one I need to finish. The squares are cut 2.5 x 4.5 inches, so my scrap bin had much to contribute to this quilt. Nothing makes me happier than using up scraps.I think this pattern appeals to me because it is random, but somewhat organized scrappy.  I was inspired by this quilt I found on Pinterest several years ago, but there are many tutorials out there similar to it.For the binding I used up my leftover bindings from previous quilts.  (I sew them together each time I finish a quilt...once I have a long enough piece I use it as binding). It adds to the scrappiness.For the backing I used my stash...I purchased this stripe on sale years ago, with hopes of using it as a binding...but I didn't realize the stripe was going the wrong way, and not good for binding. (Hate when that happens).  I love these bears, added to the backing to make it wide enough.Quilt statsFinished size: (forgot to measure)Pattern: rectangles cut 2.5 x 4.5 inFabric: front-scraps ● binding- scraps ● backing-stashBatting:  Warm and White[...]

blended baby quilt


I love this quilt!  Another simple baby quilt.  The hardest part was pulling fabric.  It started with pinks and blues and yellows and ended with magenta, peach, pink and a little purple.  I don't think you can go wrong with half square triangles.  Squares were cut at 5 inches and trimmed to 4.5 ( I use this method).  I love the way it turned out, but next time I might cut the squares bigger (cut 6 inches and trimmed to 5.5), only to make it faster.For the backing I used a Sarah Jane Border Print. I must say, as much as I love half square triangles, the trimming can get a little tedious. It's totally worth it, but definitely laborious.  Binding is tiny hearts.  I've used this print as binding before, and it's a winner.  Perfect for baby quilts.Quilt statsFinished size: 37" x 44"Pattern: half square triangles (5" squares trimmed to 4.5")Fabric: front-stash (various solids and almost solids) ● binding- Dear Stella Hearts ● backing-Sarah Jane MagicBatting:  Warm and White[...]

Baby Hawk Quilt


Another baby quilt.  I didn't get very many full quilt shots of this one...I snapped a few quick photos before the baby shower.  This was one of the quickest quilts ever!  The pattern inspiration came from the book, Quilting from Every Angle. I enlarged part of a pattern (the cover quilt).  It is made up of half square triangles and flying geese.  I LOVE this bear print by Cotton and Steel.  Perfect for a baby quilt backing.  (It's super soft too). Classic blue and white binding.  I have used this binding MANY times, more than I can remember. I think this is the end of it.  :(Quilt statsFinished size: I forgot to measure before it was given to new owner.Pattern: Quilting from Every Angle (inspiration from cover photo)Fabric: front-Observer and Art Gallery solid Empire Yellow ● back- Teddy and the Bears (Cotton and Steel) ●binding- Sarah JaneBatting:  Warm and White[...]

Bird Baby Quilt


It must be baby season, I've got several baby quilts to share.  I love, love, love baby quilts! My number one rule for  baby quilts is keep it simple.I used Empty Bobbins buffalo check quilt pattern, but I cut the strips at 4 inches instead of 6.I used bella bleached white solid, Kona spruce, and I'm not sure what the lighter green color is, but I'm pretty sure it's a Kona solid.Not only do I like simple for baby quilts, but lately I like to use solids on the front, and something fun on the back.Quilt statsFinished size: I forgot to measure before I sent it to it's new owner.Pattern:  Empty Bobbins buffalo check quilt patternFabric: front-mode bleached white, Kona spruce ● back- Sweet Dreams (Cotton and Steel) ● binding- Timeless TreasuresBatting:  Warm and White[...]

I'm still here...


It's been a while since I've been on this space, but I'm hoping to be back more regularly.  Summer always gets the best of me, my kids keep me busy (as they should) when they are home all day...I live just outside Houston, and we were hit by Hurricane Harvey a month ago. I can hardly believe it has been that long.  Our home went under mandatory evacuation and we moved as much upstairs as we could, packed up our car with a few items and our family and left.  What a roller coaster of emotions the whole ordeal has been! We were lucky and spared damage to our home, but we have been busy helping those less fortunate. The picture above shows how close we were to flooding.  I live on upper side of this creek, and just over the bridge was flooded. :(I have new respect for natural disasters, and especially flooding. It is devastating! It's one thing to see it on the TV, it's another to walk into and see it in person. Working side by side with homeowners as we cleaned out their flood damaged homes, tossing so much of their lives onto the curb, and then gutting the damaged floors, walls, cabinets is heartbreaking. These are real people, just like you and me... Flood water is no respecter of persons. It's been very humbling for us. I have learned that people are kind. They are good. They want to help their neighbors. People aren't selfish, they are generous. There isn't as much hate as Facebook wants us to think there is. For over a month I have seen it in my community and in person. It gives me hope that the world is a better place than I might have thought it was before Harvey. It makes me really hopeful for my kids. They are going to be okay. This world isn't as scary as I thought it was.As clean up winds down for me (not so much because the work is done, but because the homes have become so moldy that it's not safe for most of us to go into), I'm hoping to get back to normal if possible.My youngest started Kindergarten this fall, so all four of my kids are in school now (after being out for 2+ weeks). I'm finding pieces of time here and there to sew again. I started another half square triangle quilt, because it might be my favorite block. No rhyme or reason to this one, just random pairings of fabric...and I really like it.[...]

New starts


I'm still working my way through my's such a slow process!  I should be finishing some of these quilts up, but instead I start something new.  Ashley posted a tutorial on her blog for this first one... I love her solid version A LOT!
Inspiration for this quilt was found on Pinterest.  I cut my rectangles 2.5"x3.5", but as I'm looking at my inspiration, they look longer, 2.5"x4".  Either way, I really like this one.  



I posted a peak at these quilts a couple weeks ago on Instagram, and have finally taken some proper pictures of all three to share here.  One of our good friends here in Houston just had triplets.  There were born 6 weeks early, but all were breathing on their own and all are home now and healthy.  It's such a miracle I got chills when she sent me pics from the hospital.  All three babies are boys! and I had the hardest time settling on design for three quilts.  Then color and fabric was so hard to choose...  I ended up picking a favorite fabric for the backing and sticking to solids on the front.  I think three girls would've been easier for me than three boys (sorry boy quilts).Another challenge was trying to keep the design equal on all three.  I didn't want one quilt to be more simple than the others, nor did I want one to seem more complicated.  They needed to "match" without actually matching.  I'm sure I overthought these things too much, I was stumped for several weeks...but in the end, I love them all.The flag quilt was made using this pattern. ( I modified it a bit, and used sashing between the flags instead of a border around each flag).  I like this one.  I wish I'd made the flags bigger, but that's not a big deal.  I always enjoy a black and white quilt.for the backing I used a print from cotton and steel, called Stork Nest.  I love the birds, but really love the green color.  It's a muted grass green.for the triangles quilt, I used a dark green solid from Moda (I can't remember the name).  It has a little bit of blue in it.  I used this triangle ruler, the biggest size triangle you can make.  Cutting them out is a breeze, but sewing triangles together can be a challenge!  Matching up all those points is tricky.  I love the finish, and have mostly forgotten my frustration with points not matching.  Backing is another print from cotton and steel.  And finally a cross quilt in blue.  This is such a fast pattern to put together.  I cut my squares at 5 inches.  The blue is an Art Gallery Solid (don't have the name).This backing fabric is my favorite of all the quilts.  It's adorable.  From Dear Stella, called Forest Dreaming, perfect for a baby quilt. And for the binding, stripes for 2 and this print for the 3rd.[...]

Spellbound Quilt along


Another new quilt pattern from Fat Quarter Shop.  This one is called Spellbound and uses 2 Jelly-Rolls (2.5 inch strips), plus yardage to make.  It also uses a specialty ruler from Creative Grids, the 90 degree Double Strip Ruler, I'm not one to buy all the quilting rulers, but this did make cutting triangles a breeze.  
 I used Carolyn Friedlander's new line called, Friedlander to make this, with some low volume prints mixed in for the background, but the low volume could easily be substituted for color and would give the quilt a totally different look.
 I'm still debating how to quilt this, it's a pretty big one, measuring 64.5x80.5"!
 The sun was really bright when I took the top pics, I felt like it really washed the quilt out, so here is a shot indoors.  I don't know if I will ever tire of Carolyn Friedlander fabrics.  They are so unique.
Additional Spellbound quilts can be found here.

Cobblestone Quilt


Just looking at this quilt makes me want to pull out my scraps and start sewing!  They are so satisfying.  I started this quilt this past summer, and didn't stop until it was finished (the quilt top anyway)...which rarely happens.   This was a freebie pattern that came in the mail from one of the quilting magazines, trying to get me to subscribe.  I've tried to find it online, but haven't had success.  It's made up of 4.5" x 2.5" rectangles and 2.5" squares, sewn together into a 6.5" x 2.5" rectangle.  I then sewed 3 of them together to get a 6.5" block.  Super simple to cut out and sew together (no triangles!).  I used color for the rectangles and low volume for the squares.  It helps give the eye a place to rest in this quilt. I quilted in 8's or S's, and used the squares as my guides.  I tried a dozen or so bindings out on this, and ended up going with a classic black and white.  Works so well on scrappy quilts.Finished size: I forgot to measure before I sent it to it's new owner.Pattern:  See method aboveFabric: front-scraps ● back- Fantasia (Art Gallery Fabric) ● binding- Timeless TreasuresBatting:  Warm and White[...]

Filigree Quilt Pattern


I've been working on a fun new quilt pattern the past couple weeks with Fat Quarter Shop and Art Gallery Fabrics.  I didn't even get a chance to take a picture of the pretty fabric stack that made up this quilt, I cut it up too quickly.  Art Gallery Fabrics are one of my favorites...they are so soft. Quilt kit for this quilt can be found at Fat Quarter Shop.  (My quilt looks very similar, but isn't the same.)  I used a mixture of fabrics from various Art Gallery Designers, I wanted the background to be subtle and the crosses to be bold, but I think it would look great reversed as many options with this pattern.At first glance the pattern looks a little tricky, but it's actually really simple, and the block is trimmed down to size after it's sewn together, so every block is squared up to the exact size.I had hoped to have this quilt quilted and bound, but I injured my shoulder and can hardly use it for anything--no basting for me.  I've been resting it and hope it will heal soon.  I'm surprised by how much I do everyday that uses my shoulder, pretty much everything.  Even sleeping has been hard.I would love to see this pattern with different fabrics.  I can envision it using an ombre effect, or making it scrappy, and even shrinking it down to baby size.  I'll add it to the list :).  Hoping to get this quilted in the next few weeks, quilting will really make the pattern pop!Find the quilt kit here, and the pattern here.[...]

Buffalo Plaid Quilt


 Buffalo Plaid might have been the pattern of the year for 2016, and especially around the holidays...I saw it EVERYWHERE!  I had to make it for myself.  It's pretty amazing that you can take 3 solid fabrics and create this!  I don't mind if buffalo check sticks around for the next 10 years.  I love it! I think this print for the backing matches the front just perfectly, with the cute animals.  This quilt would be super happy in a cabin in the woods.Quilt stats:Finished size: I forgot to measure before I sent it to it's new owner, it's probably about 60" x 75"Pattern: I used this pattern from Empty Bobbin, except I cut mine at 5.5 inches (I think)Fabric: front-Red, Maroon-ish, Black ● back-Cotton and Steel ● binding-chemistry compoundsBatting:  Warm and White[...]



I guess the great thing about my absence on this blog over the holidays, is that I have LOTS to share. I've been working on this quilt for a while.  I started it because my blue scraps were plentiful...still are.  I sewed it together in strips, I'd sew about 12 inches of strips together, and then square them up, to make blocks.  Once I had enough blocks, I'd sew them together to form a row. After sewing one or two rows, I decided to add in a few pops of orange.  I like how it worked out.  I love the scrappiness of this quilt.  This is my backing...if I could change one thing about this quilt, it'd be the backing.  I like the scrappy squares (good use of fat quarters), but I wish I'd used a different color--NOT blue.  With so much blue on the front, I think a different color (yellow or orange, or even just low volume prints) would have worked better.  I'm still happy I used up stash.   For the binding I used this white polka dot (see here's another light binding). For quilting I sewed vertical and horizontal lines, randomly spaced (2-4 inches apart), and it's a winner.  The quilt is still soft, it blends into this quilt design, and it was super easy! .  I was not excited about this quilt for quite a while, I didn't love much about it, but it's funny how once it's quilted and washed, how that can change.  It's one of my favorite quilts right now. Quilt stats:Finished size: 56" x 66"(after washing and drying)Pattern: none.  (see method above)  Fabric  front: scrapsback: stashbinding: Country Girls by Riley BlakelBatting:  Warm and White[...]



 It's been a while since I've shared anything on this space, I always underestimate the holidays.  I love the busy-ness that surrounds them with special activities and traditions, but I also look forward to getting back to normal life.  I have several quilts to share, starting with this one.  The pattern is called Celebrate, by Cluck Cluck Sew, and I was able to sew up the blocks quickly.  Such a simple, but happy pattern.  I think this would be so cute as a baby quilt.I'm surprised that I have been drawn to this dark green color lately.  Reminds me of my high school days (hunter green).  I didn't think I liked my bindings to be light (or almost white), but lately I seem to be leaning that way often.  I like that it doesn't draw my eye to it, disappearing into the quilt (almost). For the quilting, I went with scallops...oh boy, they are definitely imperfect, but that's okay.  Nobody really notices anyway.  Plus, they are fun to do.Quilt stats:Finished size:   61" x 66"(after washing and drying)Pattern: Celebrate by Cluck Cluck Sew  Fabric  front: stashback: cotton and steel binding: cotton and steelBatting:  Warm and White[...]

Coloring Book!


My kids and I love to color!  We color on road trips, we color at church, and we color at home.  We are pretty open to any coloring book, but I have to say that my favorite are color by number and mystery mosaics.  I enjoy those even more than the popular "adult coloring books".   We recently tried out a new type of coloring book called Griddles, and we loved them too!  A mixture of my favorites, with a nod to needlework and quilting... The author of the book started a needlecraft company years ago in the 1970's called Fingerworks.  The coloring designs in the book are actually from her needlework designs she has converted into this book! each page is set up as a grid (which also takes me back to high school algebra and x,y coordinates)I love that each color is lumped into a section.  It makes me happy to start and finish a color at once.There are two sized grids.  My kids have mostly done the smaller ones.  I will admit that my 4 year old cannot do these, she tries and gets frustrated, and it took my 6 year old a little while to figure it out, but she gets it now and loves it.You can find Griddles here![...]

Scrap busting and planning


I am on a scrap busting mission.  After this quilt and this quilt, I wanted to keep going through my scraps.
 This scrappy rail fence was totally inspired by this quilt by Amanda Jean, and it is a good one.  I can see my bucket of scraps shrinking.  Each square is 3.5 x 3.5, so it uses many of the smallest scraps I keep.  I've been sewing nine 3.5 inch square into one 12.5 inch block.  It keeps me going and keeps my sewing space a little more organized.  
The scrappy rails led to this scrappy log cabin.  Each log finishes at 1 inch in width, and the finished square is 5.5 inches.  I don't love this one as much as the first, but I'm sure as it grows i'll like it better.  

Not sure how long these will take, but I have visions of using up all my scraps...haha.  I know it's wishful thinking, but I'm starting to think I want to change the way I store scraps.  Currently I have one larger bin that I keep near my cutting table, as I cut I add the leftovers to it, and as I sew I always sift through it.  When it gets full I sort it into colors and transfer to separate color bins.  

I want to eliminate the color bins.  I rarely use them, because they are put away and they are starting to bother me.  Why keep stuff if I am not using it?  So...I will keep sewing scrappy quilts until my bins are empty (fingers crossed) and then just have one big bin.  When it gets full I'll either make a quilt, or give the scraps away.  That's the plan...we will see if I stick with it.

Custom Lined Drawstring Bag


I'm pretty sure everyone has made one of Jeni Baker's lined drawstring bags.  Every bag I have made using her pattern turns out so adorable.  
My daughter had a birthday party to go to and wanted to gift smencils, so we made a bag to store them in.  This is the first time I have made a custom bag and it went really well, once we figured out the math...the tricky part is not really knowing if it will be the right size.  Lucky for us, we got it right on the first try.  
My only regret is that I wish the accent piece at top was a little longer.  I've taken notes, so next time should be better.  

I really need to be on top of things enough so that we can gift more presents in bags...It would be good for my stash, and a great way to use novelty fabric!



Several months ago,  I did some pattern testing for Amanda Jean and in return she sent me this lovely pillow.  What a fun surprise...

I don't know about you, but whenever I receive a handmade gift, I sit and stare at it, trying to figure out if I can duplicate it.  Amanda Jeans workmanship is exceptional.  All the seams line up perfectly...encourages me to do better.
The style feels like something I would make myself, and it fits in perfectly in my little girls' room.
 Thanks Amanda Jean!

Shimmer Quilt


I finished my Shimmer Quilt as I rewatched the first season of Poldark , which is probably the reason I finished it so quickly.  Are you watching?  If not, I highly recommend it.These blocks are pretty simple to make, and it was fun picking fabrics for each block.  I tried to stick with muted, less bright colors...and it feels perfect for fall. Yellow seems to be my go to color for binding lately.  This print is by April Rhodes, from her Bound line. (I just realized I used Bound fabric for the binding, it was meant to be). For the backing I used a Cotton and Steel print that I found for a steal at  It seemed a perfect fit to offset the bold colors on the front.for the quilting, I stitched in the ditch horizontally and vertically, and then some diagonal coss-hatch. My quilting choices have definitely evolved over the years, I find myself trying to hide my quilting lately.Quilt stats:Finished size:   53.5" x 66.5"(after washing and drying)Pattern:  Shimmer Pattern Fabric:  front: stash + back: cotton and steel +  binding: bound by April RhodesBatting:  Warm and White[...]

Quilt donations


I finally went through my stack of quilt tops and purged.  It was time to get rid of some of them. I don't know about you, but sometimes the quilt top is as far as I want to go with a particular quilt before I lose interest in it. Sometimes I don't even get the blocks sewn together before I want to be done with them... and then they start adding up, and then they kinda stress me out, because I know I should finish them, but I would much rather work on something else (that was a run-on sentence).  

So after going through my stack of works-in-progress, I found several that I sent away to various charities.  I have also found several finished quilts that I plan to ship as well.  It feels so good to know they will be used and feels so good to have them off my to-do list.

Several posts ago, I asked for charity suggestions, and wanted to share them here in case you were looking to clean out your work in progress pile.  Each has a different area of service they focus on, and all appear to be wonderful charities.  

Pink Plus


I feel such satisfaction in a good scrap quilt.  I started these pink plus blocks because my pink scrap bin was overflowing.  I probably should've kept going, because I've still got too many pink scraps.   I paid no attention to shades of pink and put them all in this one quilt...from the purply-pinks to the peachy-pinks, and I'm a little surprised that it worked out so well.   Polka dot binding. I love Sarah Jane's border prints, and I used this one on the back.  You can also see how I quilted it.  I  basically quilted straight lines, in the ditch along all the pluses.I thought I'd share the measurements for this block.each block finishes at 8 inches.background:  4-3.5" square & 4-2" squaresplus 1-5"x2" rectangle & 2-2" squaresI kept my plus all the same fabric and tried to keep the background similar fabrics.  Some of the pluses pop more than others, and I like the effect.Quilt Stats:Finished size:  39.5"x43" (after washing and drying)Pattern:  See notes aboveFabric:  front: scraps, back:  Let's Pretend by Sarah Jane, binding: Lucy's Crab Shack (Moda)Batting:  Warm and White[...]

Farmer's Wife Blocks again


It seems I get excited about my Farmer's Wife Blocks about every 6 months.  I finished up another batch and am so happy with them and my progress.  I'm actually seeing the light at the end of the quilt block tunnel.

Here's all of them...I have 64 completed.  My goal is 80, layout will be 8x10.  I think that'll make a good throw size quilt.
I love seeing the evolution of my scraps...This last batch, especially, took a more muted turn.  Not as bright, and I really like it.

A couple Quilt tops!


I finished up a couple quilt tops this weekend!  Yay!  I'm chipping away at my projects. 
First up, this flying geese quilt.  I was mostly inspired by this quilt, but there are several like this out in the blogosphere.  I used the bloc-loc ruler for this one, and it was better than I thought it would be! I highly recommend it.

 I also finished up this quilt top, a great scrap buster, too.  (And while we are here, the leaves on my maple tree are shrivelling up on the ends, you can kind of see it in the picture.  It happens every year and I haven't figured out what is wrong...any tree experts out there?)

Star Wars Quilt


I finally have a finish to share here, and this quilt has been done for several months, just took a while to get pictures.  It's a HUGE quilt and big quilts are hard to take pictures I put it off.  I also realized as I'm writing this, that this is only my second finish of the year.  I don't know what's happened, usually I've done more.  I guess I need to start finishing quilts, instead of starting new ones.My son is a huge fan of Star Wars, has been for years, and I figure he probably will be for many more to come (especially with the new movies coming out).  So this was really fun to make and exciting for him--kinda.  (Let's face it, quilts aren't as exciting to my kids as they are to me...).The pattern is actually a cross stitch pattern by wee little stitches.  Each stitch is a 1 inch square.  I started out doing a 2 inch square, but it was just getting too big, so I shrunk it down to one inch, and honestly it could probably be even smaller, but I don't love working with smaller... A blurry picture on my sons bed...he even accessorized it with a vader mask and cross bow for chewie.   I used black and white stripe on the binding.  And I didn't quilt it myself...I tried, but after attempting 2 times, unsuccessfully, to baste it, I decided  to send it out.  I used Emily Session @ Emerson Quilting.  She did such a great job.  She quilted in concentric squares and I think it works perfect for this pattern.  I love it!Quilt Stats:Finished size: 92in X 104inPattern:   Cross stitch pattern found here Fabric:  Solids are Kona (not sure colors)  binding:  timeless treasuresBatting:  Quilters Dream cotton batting (from quilter)Quilted by:  Emerson Quilting[...]