Notebook Cover Swap at the PNW MQG Meetup!

This last weekend, my modern quilt guild, the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild, hosted a great meetup for all the ‘local’ chapters! We had a blast! It was like a mini retreat hanging in town with my quilting buddies. There was a picnic, a mixer, a shop hop, and an all day sew-in. The sew-in was my favorite!


Oh, and there was a notebook swap!

I totally did not read the directions and didn’t realize we were supposed to quilt it! OOPS! I thought about quilting it, but didn’t want to add batting. I even had the quilting design figured out in my head. But why I didn’t think about quilting without the batting I don’t know! I can only say, maybe I was too tired to ave been sewing that night!


I started out with a block I had made for my Technicolor Galaxy quilt. I made it for the quilt and then decided to go in a different direction, so I saved it. Then decided it would be great for the notebook cover!



Added a couple more curves that go across the front and back in fold over into the insides of the cover. I love Debbie’s notebook covers, so I went to use her tutorial, only to find out that she uses Rachel’s tutorial! Super easy!


At the swap, I was super nervous about who would get my unquilted cover… And then actually, my friend Rachel, ended up with mine! She says she actually prefers them not quilted. Perfect! I’m hoping she wasn’t just being nice!


And then I got mine! LOVE IT! And it is actually quilted! As you may have noticed above… I do like those flying geese!


And how can you not love little bitty flying geese????

And the super cool button closure! My son saw this one and immediately asked for one of his own! So, just wait for Christmas everyone, I think I might have some ideas….


The meetup was such fun! We had a great table with Debbie, Rachel, Rachel and Becca!


It took all day but I finished three paper piecing blocks for my Nurture circle of do Good Stitches! Ok, so I guess it didn’t take all day. We did take breaks for a little pop-up shop action with Island Quilter and some food. And dinner was quite a learning experience. Waiting for an hour and half for dumplings! And being amazed at how many other people waited that long too!! They were worth the wait, thank you Rachel!


And who doesn’t love a big bag of swag!!

Thanks SMQG!


Charley Harper Inspired Cardinal Mini Quilt

I think I threw this image out as a teaser sometime back. I actually made it last year, but never showed it off! I was waiting until I had the pattern to go with it. But I never made a pattern. And honestly, I doubt I’ll ever get to it! I just made this one up as I went along and I don’t have it and I haven’t taken the time to recreate it yet!


I made this for a swap that our Seattle Modern Quilt Guild did last year! We did a secret mini swap! And I knew my partner loved Charley Harper, so I decided to take a piece of his awesome art and make it into a quilt!


Since it was a secret swap I had to be careful of the pictures I posted! I just loved this one! I started making it with 2×2 squares and was getting HUGE! So I switched gears and ended up with this guy!


image via Charley Harper Art Studio

If you don’t know Charley Harper, you should check him out! I love the art! I’ve actually wanted to make quilts out of his designs for quite some time. I just noticed a beagle that might have to be a quilt sometime soon…. Quite a bit of the art has been turned into mosaics, which then just calls out to be made into a quilt!


I decided to do the matchstick, skinny, stitching for the background. And faned out the tail. I didn’t want to applique the little eyes and knees so I used buttons!


And I used a super skinny ribbon for the legs. I could have done super skinny patchwork, but since I had the ribbon, I thought it might be easier! And it was!


I also always love checkin’ out the back of quilts and seeing how the stitching makes the patterns of the front.



Do you have a favorite piece of art that you want to make into a quilt?

Valentine’s Day Quilted Postcards- a Tutorial

I’m super excited about this project! Our Seattle Modern Quilt Guild is doing a Valentine Postcard swap. When we first heard about it, I decided I was in, but I wasn’t super excited. Then I started making mine and got hooked!!! Obsessed!


I came home and started looking around online for instructions and sizes so I could make some and mail them. I couldn’t find a tutorial that didn’t include an applique type edge. I wanted a more quilted look….


The first one I made was this one. I used a bunch of 1 inch squares, but then couldn’t quite get the back to work. It’s also super thick for mailing with all the seams! So as much as I love this one, it’s not what I wanted for a quilted postcard valentine up taking the plunge into the mailbox!


So I made some more! But this time I made patterns! More paper piecing for me! I couldn’t decide on just one, so the pattern actually has 3 patterns in it! I have the set of patterns in my Craftsy store, for $5.00. But the tutorial is free! So let’s get to it!


You’ll need a little bit of fabric, a 4×6 piece of batting, a 4×6 piece of cardstock, patterns and I use basting spray. I used mostly scraps, so needless to say, you don’t need much fabric!


Print and pick your favorite pattern. Each pattern has two outside lines. One for making a 4.5 x 6.5 inch block. The second is larger for making the postcards.




Paper piece your hearts! If you’re new to paper piecing, my tutorial on that should help! Sew together and then tear off the paper.


Center the batting on the quilt block. I use basting spray, but you can pin too. Spray the spray on the batting, not on the quilt block. You’ll have a little more than a half inch on each side.


Quilt the block and the batting together.


Iron the edges in half and over again.


Spray baste the cardstock onto the batting.





Time to do the ‘binding’! Fold the block over the edge of the card stock and start sewing. The corners are a bit tricky. Especially if you have a bunch of seams like I did in my first postcard. So following the pictures, fold, fold, fold and fold one last time. Then continue sewing!


And you’re done! Ready for mailing!



And just in case, I mailed one to myself, just to check… I did use a regular letter stamp instead of a postcard stamp. One, because I had it and I didn’t have a postcard stamp. And two, I though they might need extra postage since they are thicker than a plain postcard…..


These are so fun! Pretty quick, too! Now I have to make more. I need some for the swap and now I want to send them on to family!



Which one is your favorite!

Happy New Year!

I hope yall all had a wonderful New Years Eve! We have a tradition of always going to Tacoma’s zoo and seeing the zoolights, so that’s what we did! Do you have a favorite NYE tradition???


I thought I’d welcome in 2014 with a look back at my favorite projects from 2013! I’ve been reading a lot of other blogs and it seems like I’m not the only one that gets into a mood thinking that I didn’t create too much… But once you sit and look at your whole blog from the past year, I’m reminded that I made A LOT! Yeah!

And my favorites are….

The crazy colorful outfit the kiddo and I made in January for the Project Run and Play Sew Along.

The I Love You Jacket I made for the kiddo in February.

The Super Hero Cape t-shirt tutorial (you’ll see a superhero theme throughout this year!) I made for the kiddo and Go To Sew in March!

One of my all time favorite projects was the Fox Skirt in April (for my friend April’s daughter!).

The wonky star quilt I made, with the help of my Nurture Circle, in May.

The low volume, ‘Lone Star’ pillowcase I made for a swap partner in June.

The little overalls I designed for a friend’s son adoption in July.

I really loved how this needle book turned out that I made for another swap in August.

The Flash costume in September! I didn’t blog about it until October, but technically I made it in September….

And the Hulk Costume in October!

The kiddo and I really loved our melted bead necklaces we made in November.

And last but not least, I loved our Jack and Jill pj’s I made in December!

What was your favorite project that you made last year??? Or do you have a favorite that I made? I’d love to hear about it!!

Fab LIttle Pincushion Swap

another swap… yep!


This swap is called the Fab Little Pincushion where you make a pin cushion for your secret partner. Since I’m obsessed with hexi’s, I decided to do a hexi pincushion. With little hexi’s. (so addictive…)


Then I put it all together and it got big. I had an idea in my head about how it was going ot look. It didn’t really turn out that way.  I do like the hexi top, though. I knew it was getting too big, but I couldn’t stop myself!


Luckily, my partner wanted a larger cushion! whew!


I had a few hexi’s left over, so I added them to the coordinating needle book I made. Whiel I wasn’t completely in love with the cushion, I am in love with the needle book!


And on to what I got!! Thank you so much  for all the beautiful work you put into my package! Everything is beautiful!



I love all the work that went inot this for me. And everything is tiny, just like I like it! The pinchion has a front and back (of course) done with the hand stitching! I love the embroidery work on all the pieces. I’ve reently fallen in love with needle books. And my son is trying to get the thread catcher for himself! No, no buddy!


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Modernista Homemade Swap- Again!

Another swap. I’m addicted. What can I say?? And after this one, even more so!


This round of the Modernista Homemade Swap was for the bedroom. Each round has been for a different room in the house, the dining room, kitchen, sewing room, living room. My partner wanted pillowcases for her main item and a fabric storage box or bowl was her idea for the little item. Her colors were bright and she’s seems to be a bit like me with her love of bright greens and blues! Yea!


So I made the pillowcases. Remember these? You can get the whole French seam pillowcase tutorial here.


Then…. My lovely sponsor and blogging pal, Michele from Michele Made Me, made these exquisite fabric bowls on her blog with a wonderful tutorial (huge round of applause from me right here) to go along with it. As soon as I saw the bowl, I knew I had to make it for my partner!




There’s some machine sewing and some hand sewing. I used to say I don’t hand sew anything. I now stand corrected. I LOVE hand sewing. Why switch after all these years??? I just realized I can take it with me! Hello! Looooove it! (If you watch Dragon Tales, I am sure you can here Weesie singing LOOOOVE it!)


The bowl is super easy to make. You’ve got to try it. Can you tell I like it? I only took a hundred pictures of it! I think everyone is getting one from me for Christmas! :) shhhh…. Actually, both of these projects were easy and addictive!

And on to what I received!!


This is one of my favorite pictures from my wedding. And it’s also the picture I gave to my secret partner as a color inspiration board.


I was a bit surprised to open the package! Actually a LOT surprised! Talk about secret! My partner, Graycefulily, didn’t post any progress pictures on the flickr group so I was not expecting this. It’s perfect!


I said I wanted a pillow cover or something for my room. And for my little I needed a little glasses case! Love them both! And I love my little extra goodies too! And now I’m inspired to start working on my husband’s Christmas present quilt that I was supposed to have done by now!


The quilting on my pillow cover is very cool! And I love that she threw in a little hand stitching.

Now you can probably tell why I’m addicted to these things!


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A Low Volume Modern She Made Swap

This swap, like the quilt block I told you about on Monday, was also a learning experience. My partner requested a low volume piece. A What???


What in the world is low volume?? Can you say totally foreign to me with all my bright crazy colors? Um. Yes. So I had to do a little research on the subject. fast.


Basically, in a few words, it’s quilting with fabric that lacks contrast. I’ve since learned it’s a pretty popular quilting trend right now. I’m pretty embarrassed to even say this, but something I didn’t even know was going on… But I’m in the ‘Know’ now! It’s inda like the definition of Modern Quilting, in that I can’t find a real definition. Here’s what I’ve put together. It’s a lot of white/light grey. Mostly white. Pastels. No/Low contrast. Whites with small prints. Don’t use bright/saturated colors.


So, based on those definitions, I got closer to low volume than I usually do, but I didn’t quite hit it on the head or anything! The light grey should maybe have been white… And there is contrast, just not as much as I usually do.  You can download a PDF with a nicely written story on Low Volume quilting here at Quilting Daily.


In my attempt at low volume, I made a ‘Lone Star’ pillowcase. I used this tutorial by Hopeful Homemaker for my star. Like so many quilt blocks, it can be addicting too! I was to make more!



And for the goodies, I sent a bright (HA!) flexible ruler, a fun quilt shape template key ring and a little mug rug from the scraps.


And then… Back to the bright and bold! I was a lucky duck in this swap, too! Look at the wonderful placemats I received from Beachgirl Sews!


Each one is different! They are fantastic! I hate to use them. But I also hate not too! Even the husband and kiddo are excited for the new placemats at the dinner table.



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Fab Little Quilt Swap

Yes, another one! I kinda overloaded on swaps this spring! I think I might have to sit some out for the next rounds…


But it’s hard when they are so much fun! And I included a little La Petite Pouch and one of my new favorite quilting tools, a Frixion pen.


This one was a little quilt that I thought was a shooting star. Then someone said it looked like a kite with it’s tails flowing behind. I actually like that description even better!

FLQS-TheStart-ImFeelinCraftyIt began looking like this… And it just needed something…


So  I added something!


I’m loving the hand stitching and the embroidery thread. Now I just need to learn a few ‘real’ stitches!


And the back looked like this with my little tag.


And are you wondering what I got in this swap???


This amazing bundle from She Can Quilt! And boy can she quilt! I saw this piece during the progress photos and loved it! LOVED it. Then I saw her quilting and was really in love.


Check it out. It’s amazing! This quilting seems to be her style! Very cool!


And this is what it looks like.

Have you joined a swap yet???

What I know about Swaps!

I’ve been doing swaps for about the last year maybe? Since last June. I’m going to tell you what I know about them. But I have to give a warning… They are addictive! So if you start, just beware…


Pretty LIttle Pouch Swap

I’ve had a lot of questions about the swaps, so I thought I’d tell ya what I know! And if you know more, please add comments below for others to learn from!

All the swaps I do are flickr based. You basically have to use flickr. Let’s step back a minute… How did I learn about them to begin with? I would scan flickr now and then and I kept finding amazing things people had made for this swap or that swap. I had no clue what a swap was, but eventually I put two and two together and realized that a swap is literally a swap! Hello!


Modernista Homemade Swap

So I started seeing a theme between some of these pieces I like and which swaps these artists were participating in. Most swaps require a good history of swapping. But you have to start somewhere, huh? So I wrote to the group administrators and told them I was interested in playing along, but I had no history…. They took a look at my flickr page and let me in.


Doll Quilt Swap

Most of the ones I do, you have to be approved to join. And others you have to be invited. Of course, each swap has their own requirements.


Modern She Made Swap

How they work. All the ones I do are blind swaps. Meaning who you are making something for is not the same person who is making something for you. AND… The person you are making something for doesn’t know you are making something for them! So you can’t ask them directly what they like and what they don’t like!

ModernistaSwap-Sewing Machine Cover- I'm Feelin' Crafty

Modernista Homemade

If you can’t talk to them, how do you make them something that they are going to like?? You stalk them. Yep. No restraining orders here. The more stalking the better! When you get your partner’s info, it includes their likes and dislikes and all their social media outlets. Like their blog, their pinterest page, their flickr page, and anything else you want to share!

Kitchen Mini-1- I'm Feelin' Crafty

Modernista Homemade

Now you have your partner. You can start stalking. But there’s another component to the whole swap thing… And that’s the fact that you really need to stay up to date on all the progress pictures being added to the flickr group for the swap. You are asked to comment on as many progress photos as you can. Why would you want to comment on so many pictures? Because you don’t know who your partner is. And your partner, more than likely, is going to post progress pictures with questions. And the more you comment, the more likely your end product is going to be perfect for you! You are answering questions and helping guide your fellow artists in making the perfect gift for you. And you are also letting your partner learn more about your likes and dislikes based on the comments you share!


Modern She Made Swap

Then you make something cool, mail it off and get a wonderful package in the mail just for you!

Most swaps also send little goodies with the main package. So be sure to know the swaps guidelines on that too! I didn’t realize that at first and almost sent mine out without the extra goodies!

So what swaps do I do? The two main ones that I have loved are the Modernista Homemade Swap and the Modern She Made Swap. I recently joined the Pretty Little Pouch Swap, that was a lot of fun! And I’ve also just started the Doll Quilt Swap and the Fab Little Quilt Swap.

And a few that I like, but haven’t participated in yet are the Fab Little Pincushion Swap and the For the Love of Solids Swap.

If you swap, let us know your favorite swaps, too!
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Modernista Homemade Swap #3

Yep, I did it again… I signed up for three swaps this spring. Why?? I don’t know. I can’t seem to say NO. Luckily there is only one due a month…


The Modernista Homemade Swap was last month. I almost missed the deadline too…. I even wrote to the Swap Mama this long email about how I couldn’t get it done on time, blah blah blah… I never heard back from here and then saw that the deadline had been changed from Saturday the 30th to today, the 1st!!! Yea!!! So luckily I’m going not to be kicked out of the swap next round…..


My partner originally had one color scheme, but then moved and changed her color scheme. With the swaps you are supposed to ‘stalk’ your partner, since you can’t talk directly to them. So I checked out her new pinterest page and it was full of pictures of grey, white and teal. And there were also images of art that said things like, ‘Love builds a happy home’ and ‘Love is spoken Here.’


As soon as I saw the colors and the art picks, I knew exactly what I wanted to do….


I had been wanting to make this heart since I had seen it around the web time and time again. Now I had the perfect opportunity!

I used the same technique that I used to make my Where I Live postage stamp quilt. I love watching it shrink! Except for those quick moments of fear when you turn it over and the corners don’t line up because you haven’t finished sewing a section. It happens a couple of times. Then I remember that’s the 1/4inch allowance that I haven’t sewn yet… Oh, yeah, and then I’m back on!


I tried my hand at a little embroidery work. Inspired by the art prints I had seen. It’s not the best, but I think it turned out cute. I was going to make more of one of the saying, but then got nervous that my partner might not like my lack of embroidery skills, so I left it sweet and short!


For the small second item, I made a pinking shears pouch. It’s a quilted pouch with bound edges.


Even though the pouch is probably not going to be used in the same room as the pillow, I still made them match. And I used all my teal scraps…. STay tuned for a tutorial on how I did the pouch.


And I decided to add a little something to the back. As I was cutting the pieces for the front, I had a few extra, so I threw it on the back. And it turns out the back actually holds it own as a design, I think!


I love how the stitching on the sides makes it look really clean and fresh.

And I received my package! The colors are perfect for our living room. Love the orange, brown and yellows. My swap gift was a lap quilt and some quilted coasters from a.quilter.2. Too cute!



And now I’m on to my next swap and think I’ve already figured it out! This is going to be a month of quilting for sure. Hopefully I can get a little something else in….


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