Thank You Hallmark

“Some” time ago, (aka about 4 years ago), I bought an English Paper Piecing pattern from Quilting the Good Life at an AQS quilt show.  My thinking was that it might be something I could do while watching TV.  Because I have so much downtime, you know.

The pattern is called Morning Glory and you can see it here.  I spend most of my time at the long arm, so needless to say, it went slowly.  Initially I was just going to experiment with some scraps, but then I found a pink and beige diagonal plaid fabric that I really, really, really wanted to use for the binding.  So I used my pink and beige scraps, and some yellows, too.

It took over 2 years to do the EPP and the applique, because I only worked on it when I was relaxing watching Hallmark movies – hence, the name of the quilt is Thank You Hallmark.

It’s a simple pattern and has a lovely repetition to it.  Here’s a portion:


That wasn’t enough for me, so I added a vine on the border. Then I went all overboard on the quilting:


And the entire quilt looks like this:


My lovely friend, Amy, said some really kind things about the quilt, so I decided to enter it in the Pennsylvania National Quilt Extravaganza.  I was so surprised when it won an honorable mention!  The word “stunned” is not quite strong enough!

I had sent my quilt in to them using USPS.  The quilt was returned in beautiful condition, with a gorgeous ribbon on top.  The best part, really, was the comments section from the judges.  Their words were very constructive, and zeroed in on the things that I had struggled with, verbalizing the issues better than I can.

All in all, a great experience.  I love EPP, can’t wait to start the next one.

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Scraps of ugly fabric

I’m part of the West Side Quilters.  Our meetings often start with some sort of a warm up game.  About a year ago, we had to bring in a yard of ugly fabric.  The game commenced, and we tore the fabric in half, passed it around, it got torn in half again, we kept passing the pieces around, and we all ended up with different sized pieces of ugly fabric.  We were then challenged to do something beautiful with the fabric.  We were “allowed” to add a neutral fabric if needed.

So of course I envisioned a postage-stamp style border (if the fabric’s ugly, cut it smaller until it’s not ugly anymore) around a very large blank area of a neutral fabric, where I could feature some nice quilting.  I decided to  limit myself to fabric I already had.  For some reason, I felt compelled to use as much of the ugly fabric as possible, which made for a fairly large postage-stamp border.  I ended up using two different neutrals for the central area.


Above you can see part of the border, and some of my design work.


The quilting design was starting to come together. A few first for me – I’d never done some of the motifs above.img_20180424_202534578_top

And here’s the finish product.  It was an interesting challenge:  take a bunch of ripped rejects, and do something beautiful.

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Ellie’s Mod Ornaments

I’m so happy to report that I have a new and improved cell phone, with a much better camera than the one I’d been using.  It really helps when photographing quilts, especially quilts I really like, such as this one.

Ellie inspired me to make this quilt.  Her Christmas 2016 decor was Absolutely Fabulous. Rich jewel tones, luscious textures, lots of teal and magenta and gold and silver. I am a Christmas Decoration junkie…it was wonderful.  I had already fallen in love with the “Mod Ornaments” pattern from SewKindOfWonderful ( you can find the free pattern here ); Ellie’s use of color inspired me to make this quilt (I previewed a few snippets of it earlier).

So here it is:


The prints are mostly from a layer cake.  The solid is a light gray from American Made by Cloth Works.  I used two batts, an 80/20 on the bottom, topped with a wool batt.  Glide 40 and Glide 60 thread.

Here’s another picture:


I really like the SewKindOfWonderful patterns.  They really showcase pretty fabrics, and leave lots of room for pretty quilting.

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My Log Cabin

I started chipping away at my stash about a year ago, specifically the scraps.  I had a really nice, large twig basket crammed so full of scraps that so far, I have made 3 “jelly roll” style quilt tops, a mega-jelly-roll quilt top (using 6″ strips rather than 2.5 inch strips), and a log cabin quilt top.

Here’s one of the jelly roll quilts.  I added a 10″ white border, and made a coordinating pillowcase that uses the binding fabric as an accent.  It was a gift to a young lady heading off to college:


More on the other jelly rolls later!

Here’s the log cabin.  It’s still a flimsie; I hope to get to it sometime this summer.  I don’t usually like high contrast quilts for myself, but I like the way these fabrics work together.


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Here’s an early peek at a quilt I am finishing up.  I hope you like it; I sure do! Here are a few views of the back.


and here’s another section:



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Reggie’s Tee Shirt Quilt

Reggie made this quilt for her grandson’s high school graduation. I love the colors! I used an orange Glide thread, top and bottom, to tie everything together.

With a tee shirt quilt like this, the quilting is quite secondary to the shirts and the colors in the sashing. I used a loopy meander which allows the Glide thread to gleam without competing with the tee shirts.Showing quilting

So many memories in this quilt!

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If Mary Had Been a Quilter

A few years ago, I saw this pattern at the AQS show in Grand Rapids, and immediately thought of my friend, Nancy. Nancy has a wonderful collection of creches, which our sewing guild has enjoyed at her home during several Christmas parties.

Nancy completed the quilt this fall, and I quilted it.  I think it’s just lovely.


I followed the directions that came with the pattern for the quilting.  The quilting really needed to be secondary to the piecing and applique work.  The infant’s blanket is pieced, then appliqued in place.  The quilting really plays that up.


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AQS Quilt Week and The Quilted Pineapple!

Last week I traveled to Syracuse, NY for the AQS Quiltweek Show and most importantly, quilting classes with Linda Hrcka .  I’m so impressed with her quilting. It’s fabulous yet never upstages the piecing.  Great instructor, and really nice, too.  Here’s a pic of the two of us (it was selfie time!) in front of one of her quilts:me and linda hrcka.PNG

I’m really looking forward to quilting up what I learned on my next quilt! It’s on the rails, basted and ready to go.  She is definitely an inspiration.

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Practice quilts

I practice quilting (a lot) so I end up with these good-size pieces of quilted fabric, with all of my mistakes quilted in.  I sewed two of these pieces into a pillow-case sized sack, stuffed them with bits and pieces of batting and fabric, and sewed them shut.  The result? Two “dog beds” suitable for a small dog or pretty much any sized cat. Here are my friend Tricia’s two babies, settling down for a comfy summer snooze:kitties on beds

This proves that practice does indeed make purrfect!

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A leaf and seeing double, twice

My mom had twins (17 months after she had me) and I had twins (they’re 23 now). So it seems only natural that there’s a set of twin fawns frolicking in our yard this summer. We are having a drought; I do worry about them a bit, but they seem to enjoy feasting on the leaves in the little patch of woods behind the kitchen:

deer twins

So that’s the first “double”.  The second “double” is a pair of baby comforters that I am quilting up right now. Two baby panels.  I didn’t even cut them apart before I put them on the machine. I can do that later. Here goes:

two baby comforters

I’m using a cotton batt, Glide thread on top, Bottom Line in the bobbin – my favorite combination.

And now the leaf.  Nancy brought me this quilt. It’s a Quiltworx pattern (you can find it here) called “One”.

one leaf on the machine

This quilt has a cotton batt and is quilted with Invisafil on the top, and Bottom Line on the bottom. I stitched 1/4 inch away from all the seams in the leaf, vertical lines on the light side, and diagonal lines on the dark side.  I really love the fabrics she chose for this quilt.


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