Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

This year was a bust… First off, I didn’t get to make a costume. The kiddo decided to be Harry Potter and we had already purchased most of the pieces. He’d been planning this for months! And then tonight he came home from school with 102 degree fever. So, while the other kids were getting dressed and heading out for some haunting, we hunkered down and watched a movie. The worst Halloween he said. Poor Kid!

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But I made another Halloween pillow! I’m so excited to trade it with a friend for a piece of art!

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I used my bat pattern that I have on Craftsy! It was fun to break out the pattern again! It’s pretty quick and easy!

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I through is a little piece of with one of my favorite Halloween fabrics! I used this same fabric on my Halloween quilt from a few years back.

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I always say I’m going to add a zipper back, but then I never have one when I need one. So I always resort back to the envelope style back. And I’m fine with that! At least until I buy a stash of zippers…

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According to this guy, it’s pretty comfy too!

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If you decide to make a bat pillow, be sure to tag me! I’d love to see what everyone else makes with them! I hope you all had a wonderful Halloween! I can’t wait until next year!

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Modern Sampler Quilt

You may remember me starting the Modern Sampler Quilt Along with Salty Oat, way back in at the beginning of last year. Then I got most of the blocks done by May and then finished the beginning of this year.

This quilt is pretty much not my style at all! I like it, but the low volume, not me! It was a fun challenge to try to stay low volume for a whole quilt!

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And the pattern… Well, how to put it nicely… It was challenging. Maybe it was the difference between being familiar with my own versus a Japanese pattern. Or maybe it was just ‘challenging’. And the blocks weren’t our usual 10.5″ inch type block.

But I couldn’t stop. There were a couple of blocks that had me considering packing it up and calling it done. But I didn’t! And I’m glad I didn’t.

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Some of the blocks were more challenging than the others. But what I did get used to was all the mitered corners on each block! The last few look much better than the first few. It just takes practice!

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And the back! Although it’s upside down in this picture, I do like the minimalist layout! ha!

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And a little bit of color to the binding!

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It’s hard to see all the details that went into this quilt in the full frontal pictures. So this quilt is going to my do Good Stitches group They have very kindly agreed that I can keep my do Good quilt from last year that got accepted into the Quiltcon Show if I send in this one! I’ve grown very attached to my other one! I can’t believe it has taken me so long to show this one off!

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Blogger’s Quilt Festival

Hello there! Long time no see… I’ve missed you and thought of you often, but alas, I haven’t written. we went on vacation, then school started and I headed off to a quilt guild retreat. Now it’s all about party planning! ANYWAY….

I’ve never participated in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival, but every year I say I will, then I dont… I’m going to this year, gosh darnit! And I’m going to share the quilt I made for the #whatshadeareyou series with RJR Fabrics earlier this year!

I started with one design that I didn’t like and at the last minute switched to this one and am so glad I did! Raindrops on Wildflowers! As I was quilting it, I debated, one big spiral or three spirals? The whole family agreed on three circles. The kiddo said it was like raindrops in water!

The quilt block is obviously something I just made up, but then I realize it was full of inset corners! Ergh… But I remembered they aren’t so bad and I pretty much mastered it! Well, for this block at least! I’ll post a tutorial soon.

The quilt came from a Quilt Design A Day inspiration photo! I Love seeing the QDAD designs turn into a real quilt design. For more on the inspiration check out this post.

And the back is actually a really fun polka dot fabric. The front had to be solids, but you could choose anything for the back. Obviously I had different intentions since it was a different quilt design I ordered the fabric for, but I like the polka dots and stripes together!

 

National Thrift Shop Day

Have you been thrift shopping lately?? It’s one of my favorite things to do! And I’m excited to show you my latest purchases to celebrate National Thrift Shop Day!

Recently I was contacted by Value Village about promoting thrift shopping on National Thrift Shopping Day and I jumped at the offer! Um, yes! I had it my mind that I was ONLY going to get crafty things, but of course there’s so much more to thrift than craft supplies!

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My first stop at thrift shops is always the linen department! And when I saw these whales, I knew exactly what I wanted to make with them. I’m totally going to make pillows for our beach house and maybe even a quilt to go with them. I came straight home and ordered some Kona cotton to match, exactly! Can’t wait!

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I usually don’t buy pattern books, but I saw this one and it had some cool things in it, so I added that to my pile! I also found this pattern in my size. It looks a little dated, but last winter I saw a woman wearing a coat that was so close to this pattern. So I’m hoping that with the right fabric and this pattern I can recreate that look I saw!

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So this pattern is what sold me on this book! And how about these pillowcases? I think they will be perfect for this pattern. through in a contrasting solid and boom! Gonna be cool!!!

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This one is a cool one too. It could use the pillowcase fabric and be really cool too!

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The thing about thrifting that I love is giving everything a second chance. Ok, well, number one, the finding cool and unexpected things is probably my most favorite thing about thrift shops! Second giving everything a second chance and keeping all things out of landfills. And finding new uses for the things I find. Like this book, for instance. It’s full of very traditional patterns. But I totally want to take them and make them modern or even, wait for it, Improv! Like a piece of this block will be cool as improve in my 2016 BOM quilt. Actually most of the blocks in the book will make cool improv blocks!

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I mentioned more than craft things… When you’re kiddo loves books, you want to foster that love of reading, right? Books can be expensive… Unless you buy used books! The kiddo found a nice large pile of books that he wanted. Dad found the stamps and I jumped at the Frog Juice game! We love this brand of games, so I know we’ll love this one, too! And yes, you heard me right! This thrift shopping thing is a family affair!

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And lastly, I am loving these cross stitch tablecloths. I’ve been collecting a couple over the last year (to go with my lovely quilt collection… Since I need something else to collect!). So when I saw this one, I didn’t think twice as I through it in my basket. I want to do a whole cloth quilt out of one. I also saw my friend Blair, of Wise Craft Handmade, cut one up and use it in a quilt. It is really cool!

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What do you look for when you go thrift shopping?

And I want to send a big thank you to Value Village and my new friend there for hosting my shopping trip! Shopping secondhand is a major benefit to your wallet with 96% of the retail items at Value Village being priced under $10. Go celebrate National Thrift Shopping Day!!! Every day is National Thrift Shop Day in my book!

 

Value Village provided me with a gift certificate for this thrifting experience. All opinions are my own, honest opinions!  

 

The 1-Hour Dopp Kit

I love patterns that say 1 hour!

Ha! Whatever! Well, it takes me almost that long just to pick the fabric. And if you quilt it, right away the one hour is out the window! Right? And maybe once you’ve made it once it will only take an hour, but the first one never takes me just an hour. Maybe you are faster than I am!

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For this one I used the 1-Hour Dopp Kit Tutorial from the Craftsy Sewing Blog. Even though I’m complaining about the one hour part, I like the pattern and would like to make another one. This one was a Christmas present for my husband, but the kiddo took it instead!

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I love the little handle! You could do two, but I chose to do just one. You only carry it on one end, so why do you really need two handles?

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Although the inside corners take some thought, the turned out great. This feature was one reason I headed to this tutorial over some of the others. (ignore the toothpaste spots. It’s proof that it is actually being used as a toiletry bag and not a bag to carry toys!)

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And the bottom! Do those stripes look familiar? I used scraps from my 2016 SMQG BOM Medallion quilt!

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So what do you think? Would you give it a try? Do you have a favorite Dopp Kit pattern? I’d try a different one next time. I kinda want to make a leather one… Have you?

 

Inside Out Pineapple Bed Runner

And you guessed it, another quilt!

Another one to mark off my Finish Along to do list! This one I am in love with, but for some reason wasn’t able to photograph it as wonderful as it really is!

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My stepmother told me she wanted a quilt made with my Inside Out Pineapple quilt pattern. I love the pattern, of course. You’d hope I would since I made it… But it’s so time consuming! So I was contemplating how long did she really want to wait on this project! And luckily before I asked that question, she clarified that she only wanted a bed runner. Oh, yes! I can do that without taking forever!

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A bed runner… It does look pretty, but I’m still curious about why… You’ll notice I don’t make many mini quilts. A couple of reasons… I don’t have wall space to hang them. And If you aren’t hanging them on the wall, what is the point of them? They don’t really serve a purpose. People make awesome mini’s and I love seeing other peoples minis, but for some reason when I quilt, I think it needs to be able to be used…  I don’t know why I think this way… So I’m still kinda miffed at the bed runner concept. But it turned out great!

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Her other request was for it to coordinate with the cross stitch pillow I made her a couple of Christmas’s ago. So that narrowed down the colors! And you know me and my white backgrounds! I was trying to figure out how to incorporate the white background and still coordinate with the pillow. Then my friend Debbie asked where the white was in the pillow! Ummmm…. there isn’t any. So what was I doing. Then I tried it with the grey background and, OH YES!

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The grey is my favorite staple, Sprinkle by Cotton and Steel! Love it!

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Besides the grey, I used a combination of yellow, green and teal solids and prints. Prints! Another quilting concept that I don’t use much! Yes, it still kinda reads as a solid, but I did branch out and use prints with my solids!

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Throwin’ in my label picture!

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And here it is in it’s new home! It looks quite nice and does coordinate with the pillow. My step mother was very excited and put it on the bed as soon as she got home from visiting us! I’m glad to know it was well received and will be well loved!

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This was a great project to use the Inside Out Pineapple Pattern for! I got really quick at making it, but I also didn’t get burned out with having to make too many!

 

 

Inset Corners- A Quilting Tutorial

One more post about my Raindrops on Wildflowers Quilt! I’ll show you how I made all those inset corners!

I made the block up to start with, but then I had to figure out how to actually put it together. I thought about more piecing, but I had to make a lot and that would have been too many steps per block. So I had to figure out how to make with as few pieces as possible. I made a little video of how many steps there still are in the block!

Anyway… I digress… Back to the corners… Maybe everyone else knows how to do this. I did a lot of inset corners on the Weight of Love quilt I made, but for some reason it took me a little while to get it to make these blocks! I kept forgetting which way to sew them together… Finally it stuck and I was on a roll!

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First up, stack the two fabrics on top of each other so that they overlap.

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Then trim the two pieces of fabric. And you end up with the pieces above.

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Mark one piece, on the right side, 1/4″ down from your corner.

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Mark your second piece, on the wrong side, 1/4″ down from the corner.

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Stack your dots! I’m using solids, so it doesn’t really matter for me, but you’ll want these to be right sides together!

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Then sew, using a 1/4″ seam along the edge and stop at your dot.

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When you stop at the dot, leave your needle down, but raise your foot. Then pull your top fabric around to align with the bottom piece. Sometimes the fabric wants to bunch under the needle, sometimes it doesn’t. Not sure why… But when it does, I just go in with my tiny scissors and move the fabrics behind the needle so they aren’t bunching. If you watch the ‘video’ above, you’ll see these steps in action!

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Then continue sewing out to the other end!

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Here’s the kicker! Iron into the V. If you iron the other way, you’ll get bumps.

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Then you have this!

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Some pretty awesome looking inset corners! Oh, yea!

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Honestly, I kinda hated cutting the second one off to add the half circles. But it had to be done. I thought about not using the half circles on the back blocks, but I really like the half circles, too. Big Dilemma I had!

Hope this helps in your sewing fun!

#What Shade Are You with RJR Fabrics

It’s my turn on the RJR What Shade Are You blog hop!! Have you been following along with the #whatshadeareyou series with RJR Fabrics? I started following RJR fabrics when I found the series or blog hop or whatever you want to call it!

What is this # I keep talking about? Each week or so, they feature a quilter with a quilt made from a bundle of RJR Fabric and then have a giveaway of that fabric bundle! The fabric bundle was what originally hooked me, but the quilters are amazing! I’ve found some new quilters to add to my IG feed, for sure. One day they had a call for bloggers interested in participating, so of course I volunteered and they accepted me.

I used the following colors:

Eggnog 228
Canvas 150

Carrot 131
Oriole 314
Bandana 367
tangerine Dream 276
Orange Crush 372

Cove 294
Riviera 274
Luau 376
Turks and Caicos 292
horizon 354

Pistachio 404
Spring 405
Lucky Green 406
Sour Apple 346
Grass is Always Greener 347

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Super excited, right?? Yes, I was. Then panic struck! Me being in the lineup with all these other quilters that use tons of different fabric. I typically only use a few different colors in one quilt, but all these others use tons of colors. I remember walking around Quiltcon looking at the quilts with more than just a few colors for inspiration…

Then I decided on a design I had made in one of my office meeting sketches. It was a design I could incorporate a bunch of colors into. The kiddo and I got to work and picked the fabrics, finally… Then they came. And stage fright set in again. And I decided I didn’t want to make the design I was starting to make…

So in came design idea number 2. A Quilt Design A Day design! The ‘spark’ above from Design Seeds inspired my purple design. And that purple design became my #whatshadeareyou quilt! I thought it would be cool, but I still wasn’t sure it would stand up against all the other quilts in the series. Once I started going, it kept growing on me and I liked it more and more! And now I love it! I hope you do too!

I’m calling it Raindrops on Wildflowers! As I was quilting it, I debated, one big spiral or three spirals? The whole family agreed on three circles. The kiddo said it was like raindrops in water!

The quilt block is obviously something I just made up, but then I realize it was full of inset corners! Ergh… But I remembered they aren’t so bad and I pretty much mastered it! Well, for this block at least! I’ll post a tutorial soon.

The front had to be the solids collection, which I love. My go to solid fabric is typically another brand that I won’t mention here… But I might have just been swayed! This fabric is much softer than my usual. And there’s still tons of colors to choose from. No reason this fabric can’t be my new go to!

And the back is actually a really fun polka dot fabric. The front had to be solids, but you could choose anything for the back. Obviously I had different intentions since it was a different quilt design I ordered the fabric for, but I like the polka dots and stripes together!

And stayed tuned… A tutorial and giveaway will be popping up here shortly!

 

Left and Right Quilt Tutorial

Remember my do Good Stitches Left and Right quilt that I wrote about last month?

Honestly, It’s pretty easy…. I’ll show you how we did it. You’ll need 3 colors of fabric for the flying geese, white and a pile of grey scraps. Unfortunately, I don’t have a quantity of how much of each fabric you’ll need. You’ll need to do the math on that based on how large of a quilt your looking for.

image via A Quilters Table

First, we’re making a big batch HST. Have you tried my friend Debbie’s tutorial for big batch HST’s? It’s awesome! You can find it here.

To make your big batch HST’s you’ll need (1) 9×9 square of white for every color 9×9 square. (1) set of 9×9 squares will give you 18 HSTs.

You’ll also need to cut:

(9) 2.5×3.5 white rectangles- (1) for each set of HST (which will make 1 flying geese).
And grey scraps

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Once you’ve got your HST’s, we need to add the grey bits! Then line up the ruler so that you are cutting off the tip of the colored edge of the HST, 1.25″ away from the center.

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Add small scraps of grey to each corner. I suggest chain piecing at this point. I also didn’t trim the grey scraps. I just made sure they were big enough that once they are folded over, they cover the corner.

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Trim each HST block to 2.5 inch squares.

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Next, let’s make some flying geese! Sew together 2 HST’s to make your flying geese blocks. Chain piece again.

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Sew the 2.5×3.5 rectangles on to the left side of each HST block. Make sure they are all pointing in the right direction.

Then do it again and again and again for each of the three colors.

OK, from here on out, I don’t have very good pictures!

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Sew the blocks together along line 1, shown above, first. Do this with all the flying geese blocks.

Next take the double flying geese blocks and sew them together along line 2, shown above. Be sure to backstitch at the top and bottom of each!

And do that until you get length you want of the each of the rows of each color. Add strips of white between and you’re done!

There are a lot of little blocks, but they go pretty fast, especially if you chain piece them!

What do you think? Will you make it? If you do, please let me know! Can’t wait to see it!

A Little Cross Stitch Pouch

Took another break from the blog here… Went on vacation and didn’t plan posts like I used to, nor did I post on vacation like I used to! Partly because I didn’t have internet… Partly because I just didn’t! But I did keep making things!

I was still making things and also still finishing projects! One of these projects, ws a cross stitch pouch I made for my Dad. It was supposed to be a Christmas present…. But it didn’t quite get finished!

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When I quilt, I prefer to make my own patterns. But when it comes to cross stitch, I typically, no, I always, use a pattern. I have a few favorite shops on Etsy for patterns, but most of the patterns I have done so far is from my favorite cross stitch magazine, CrossStitcher Magazine from the UK. When I saw this saxophone project in the magazine, I knew I wanted to make it for my Dad who plays the saxophone in his church orchestra! He played as a kid and has taken it back up again  in the last ten years or so.

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I’ve loved getting back into cross stitch after many, many years. it’s been a fun on the go project. But I’ve also liked experimenting with different fabrics and techniques. I did one of my first projects on regular quilting cotton and another on linen with a grid. This one I went back to Aida fabric and just counted along. It is the easiest way to do it, in my opinion, but I think my favorite is not using Aida. The other fabrics seem a bit softer, or something!

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For the pouch I used Noodlehead’s open wide pouch pattern. I love this pattern as it’s simple and I love that it actually opens all the way! For this one I made one larger piece and quilted as a quilt as you go type project. Then I cut it down to the front and back pieces. I did this to make sure the front and back stripes lined up as I put it together.

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And the back! Some of my favorite fabircs!

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The pattern was a little tricky since the colors are pretty similar (more so when you are working on it up close!). But it was a pretty easy pattern other wise!  The saxophone is just a small piece in a larger design with other instruments. I only wanted the Sax! The pattern is All That Jazz from Issue November 2014 of Cross Stitcher Magazine.