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Happy Monday, Friends!   I hope you have had a great weekend!  I want to thank you for entering my giveaway (courtesy of McCall’s Quilting) of McCall’s Quilting July/August 2014 issues two Fridays ago.

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I used a random number generator (www.random.org), and drew the following two winners.  Ladies, I will email you so that you can email me back with your mailing address so that I can have the magazines sent to you!  Congrats!

#14

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#22

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Things are really happening at Ivory Spring with summer holiday being in full swing -with work and summer activities with my little family.

I didn’t know just how embarrassingly city-slickish my family is until we went to pick strawberries at a nearby farm over the weekend.   Miss Baby ooohed and aaahed at the scenery driving up to the farm, and was musing in the backseat how she wished she lived on a farm — she would just work the farm with my husband, and all I need to do is to cook.  And guess what she did when it came time to actually “work the farm” and pick the strawberries?  She didn’t want to get her hands dirty!!!  Seriously!!??

What we brought home

And I didn’t know just how many we had picked until we got home — I have been frantically looking for strawberry recipes to use the berries up before they go bad.  I made some no-cook freezer jam this afternoon… and I think I am going to try to make a strawberry cake tomorrow.  I have a lot of strawberries to use up!!!

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you have had a great start to your week.  Do come back tomorrow for another free-to-use pattern!!  Hugs to you all.

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Hello Friends, it’s lovely to have you visit again!  This is another overdue post of an editorial feature that has been official for a couple of months… but I am glad I am finally getting to it, and it is the last one in my pile of overdue posts.  Meet Stardom that is featured in Annie’s book Row Quilts – Longitudes & Latitudes.   The book is available for purchase here.

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[image source: Annie's]

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Stardom  is a music themed quilt that features different variations of the sawtooth star blocks.

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Isn’t the Sawtooth Star one of the most fun blocks, ever?

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Stardom uses fabrics from Benartex’s Concerto fabrics!  These fabrics are MUST HAVES for music lovers!  Click here to view what this fabric range has to offer.

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I used the “Composer’s Ombre Gold” swatch in the border — I love love love this swatch!

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I pieced and quilted the quilt with Aurifil Mako 50 Cotton threads – no surprise there, right?!  Batting is Hobbs‘ Tuscany silk batt.  I have talked about my choices of thread and batting here, and here.

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My Miss Baby had another milestone over last weekend.  The little Miss had her first recital!

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I was thoroughly stressed out over it, but not Miss Baby.  She did fine.  It seems a bit silly now thinking about just how stressed I was.

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So, I would love to hear any recital stories you might have – and tips too if you care to share!    Also, I would love to hear if you have ever made a musical quilt.

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Thank you again for stopping by!  I hope you have liked Stardom.  I shall catch up with you later, after I catch up on a bit of rest!

***

Click here to view the exhaustive list of my featured designs and projects.

My 2014 lineup to date —

Editorial features:

Annie’s Row Quilt Book (March 2014): Stardom

Annie’s Dazzling Diamond Quilts Book (May 2014): Solar Star

Fons & Porter’s Easy Quilts (Summer 2014): Teething Rings

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2014): Hurry Home

Generation Q (May/June 2014): Hole in the Wall

McCall’s Quick Quilts (August/September 2014): Owl Be Your Friend

McCall’s Quilting (January/February 2014): Spiral Squared

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2014): Bird Watching

Popular Patchwork, UK (April 2014): Mending Fences

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Enchanted Forest

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Urban Stars

Quilter’s World (Spring 2014): Urban Oasis

Quilter’s World (Summer 2014): Starry Repetitions

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Farm Crossing

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Boxing Day

The Quilter (April/May 2014): All Squared Up

The Quilter (April/May 2014): Tulip Trail

The Quilter (June/July 2014): Garden View

Free to use designs:

January: Midori’s Place using Gramercy by Benartex

January: View on Lexington using Gramercy by Benartex

January: Everything’s Coming Up Rosey using English Rosey by Benartex

February: Verde (Quilt) by Quilting Treasures

February: Verde (Banner/Runner) by Quilting Treasures

March: Hot Topic by Quilting Treasures

March: Poseidon’s Adventure using Neptune’s Dream by Benartex

March: My Cozy Sweater using Palm Springs by Benartex

March: Wild Kingdom using Sew Rousseau by Benartex

April: Fun with Frosty (Quilt & Runner) by Quilting Treasures

April: The First Thanksgiving (Quilt & Runner & Placemat) by Quilting Treasures

May: Party Poppers using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Sprinkled Sweets using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Dino Craze using 10,000 B.C. by Benartex

June: Monster Mash by Quilting Treasures

June: Santa’s Sleigh using Starry Night by RJR Fabrics

Hello Friends, the last couple of days have been busy.  I worked hard to push through a few things.  Autumn Sky is now on its way to the editor.  I am experimenting with quilting with straight lines.  Honestly, I find quilting straight lines MORE difficult than free-motion quilting.  I am exploring a few visual effects in straight line quilting.  I still have much to learn- don’t you just love all the learning opportunities in quilting?

Anyway, here is a sneak peek of Autumn Sky:

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The fabrics might look familiar to you… yeap, you are right, the fabrics you see are some of the fabrics you see in my Bird Watching quilt.  You still have time to enter the magazine giveaway in my Bird Watching post here.

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Meanwhile, our summer is shaping up quite nicely.  Yes, we are feeling the heat, including heat from the oven!!!  You see, Miss Baby and I are working in a bit of baking in our summer routine.  Miss Baby is crazy about those cranberry pecan rolls!  [Doreen's bread recipes are the absolute best!!!   Click here for Doreen's recipes.]  So, I am not the greatest cook in the world — I had to write Doreen and asked just how long we should wait for the bread rolls to rise before sticking them in the oven to be baked.  Doreen is  most gracious in sharing her bread making wisdom – thanks, Doreen!

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How is your summer shaping up?  Are you doing any traveling this summer?  If so, where…?

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope to post about another editorial feature tomorrow — I realized I needed to take a few more pictures while working on the post.  Till tomorrow.  Hugs to you all.

From…

… Frogs…

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to… bugs!  But these are “LuvBugs”! :)  Take a look at these cute fabrics with which I am playing right now.

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And my stack o’ blocks are even made!!

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Thanks for stopping by!  I hope you have been well.  I honestly do not know where my time went these last couple of weeks.  It’s like I woke up from my weekend, and it is Tuesday!   Well, I think I do know why, at least partly… and I shall share about that later this week.  Meanwhile, have yourself a lovely rest of the week!  Do tell me what you are working on this week…

It is always sweet for me to watch Miss Baby places her hand trustingly in her father’s hand that lovingly guides and steers.

Have a blessed Father’s Day weekend, Dear Friends!

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“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him…” (Psalm 103:13)

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Happy Friday, Friends!  I hope you have had a good week.  Since my first ever feature in McCall’s quilting (posted here), I am happy to share with you about Bird Watching, my latest feature in McCall’s Quilting‘s July/August 2014 issue. You may purchase the magazine issues on newsstands, or online here. Exclusive quilt kits are available for purchase here.

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Bird Watching is a fairly large throw quilt that uses quick to construct large blocks.  The blocks are made interesting by the different fabrics I have used, and their respective orientations.

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This quilt uses fabrics from Alex Anderson’s Flutter line, released by RJR fabrics. This line features very rich and beautiful bird-related fabrics.  I especially love the focal prints.

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Click here to view the entire fabric range.

flutter swatches

The design of Bird Watching uses the mix and match concept regardless of colorways within the fabric line.  Oftentimes, fabric swatches within a fabric line are grouped by colorways.  So, a fabric line would probably have 3 or 4 colorways with the fabrics within the respective colorways working well with each other in a quilt.  Bird Watching has fabrics from all the colorways for a summery scrappy look.  Sometimes using the most unexpected fabric may just be the pop you need for your quilt.  For Bird Watching, it was the pink and the blue swatches.  During the design phase, I was actually going for a red/brown rich look – but ended up really liking the lighter look with the blue and pink mixed in.

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[image source: McCall's Quilting]

Here are a few more shots of the quilt.

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Quilting is done tone-on-tone with Aurifil Mako 50 cotton thread over Hobbs Tuscany bleached cotton batting.  The cotton batting gives the quilt a very flat feel, as opposed to the slightly airy and poofy feel with the Tuscany silk I normally use.  But I wanted a flat feel – so, I used the bleached cotton – which I really like as well.  By the way, have you checked out the Facebook pages of Aurifil and Hobbs batting here, and here?

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I quilted rows of my pseudo feather across the entire width of the quilt.  By doing that, I kind of use  quilting to add another design element to the overall very blocky look of the quilt.

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You can see here I alternated the directions of my pseudo feather rows.

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More pseudo feathers…. you can read about my Thread Talk post on pseudo feathers here.

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Now for the GIVEAWAY, I have two extra copies of McCall’s Quilting July/August 2014 issue to share!!!  Just leave a comment in the comment section between now and 6/20/2014 and tell me what you look for in a quilting magazine.  Two winners will be selected.  Winners will be announce on 6/23/2014!

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I hope you have enjoyed Bird Watching with me today!   Thanks for popping by. Love and hugs to you all!

****

Click here to view the exhaustive list of my featured designs and projects.

My 2014 lineup to date —

Editorial features:

Annie’s Row Quilt Book (March 2014): Stardom

Annie’s Dazzling Diamond Quilts Book (May 2014): Solar Star

Fons & Porter’s Easy Quilts (Summer 2014): Teething Rings

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2014): Hurry Home

Generation Q (May/June 2014): Hole in the Wall

McCall’s Quick Quilts (August/September 2014): Owl Be Your Friend

McCall’s Quilting (January/February 2014): Spiral Squared

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2014): Bird Watching

Popular Patchwork, UK (April 2014): Mending Fences

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Enchanted Forest

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Urban Stars

Quilter’s World (Spring 2014): Urban Oasis

Quilter’s World (Summer 2014): Starry Repetitions

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Farm Crossing

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Boxing Day

The Quilter (April/May 2014): All Squared Up

The Quilter (April/May 2014): Tulip Trail

The Quilter (June/July 2014): Garden View

Free to use designs:

January: Midori’s Place using Gramercy by Benartex

January: View on Lexington using Gramercy by Benartex

January: Everything’s Coming Up Rosey using English Rosey by Benartex

February: Verde (Quilt) by Quilting Treasures

February: Verde (Banner/Runner) by Quilting Treasures

March: Hot Topic by Quilting Treasures

March: Poseidon’s Adventure using Neptune’s Dream by Benartex

March: My Cozy Sweater using Palm Springs by Benartex

March: Wild Kingdom using Sew Rousseau by Benartex

April: Fun with Frosty (Quilt & Runner) by Quilting Treasures

April: The First Thanksgiving (Quilt & Runner & Placemat) by Quilting Treasures

May: Party Poppers using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Sprinkled Sweets using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Dino Craze using 10,000 B.C. by Benartex

June: Monster Mash by Quilting Treasures

June: Santa’s Sleigh using Starry Night by RJR Fabrics

“… You know, Santa Claus and ho-ho-ho, and mistletoe and presents to pretty girls…” ~Lucy van Pelt in A Charlie Brown Christmas

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Hello Friends, I hope you have had lovely week.

And today, I am happy to share with you another free to use pattern called Santa’s Sleigh.  You have probably seen the quilt in the following ad, featured in the July/August 2014 issue of McCall’s Quilting.

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Santa’s Sleigh is designed with Lynette Anderson‘s Christmas line Starry Night, released by RJR Fabrics.

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Santa’s Sleigh is a teamwork effort – I had designed the pieced portion, while Lynette Anderson designed the applique and stitchery portion.  And for the record, I always love working with the amazing Lynette!

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And here are a few pictures of the quilt (hanging at RJR’s booth) I managed to snap at Spring Market in Pittsburgh last month.  This sample you see was made by Kay Harmon, who is a great designer herself!  The beautiful quilting is done by Sew Graceful Quilting.

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Click here to download the pattern instructions.

I hope you will enjoy making Santa’s Sleigh!

Thanks for stopping by, Dear Friends.  I am running behind this week because I keep finding myself oversleeping! :(  I shall catch up with you later.  Hugs to you all, and God bless!

***

My 2014 free to use designs:

[My free to use designs from previous years are listed under "FREE PATTERNS" on the side bar.]

January: Midori’s Place using Gramercy by Benartex

January: View on Lexington using Gramercy by Benartex

January: Everything’s Coming Up Rosey using English Rosey by Benartex

February: Verde (Quilt) by Quilting Treasures

February: Verde (Banner/Runner) by Quilting Treasures

March: Hot Topic by Quilting Treasures

March: Poseidon’s Adventure using Neptune’s Dream by Benartex

March: My Cozy Sweater using Palm Springs by Benartex

March: Wild Kingdom using Sew Rousseau by Benartex

April: Fun with Frosty (Quilt & Runner) by Quilting Treasures

April: The First Thanksgiving (Quilt & Runner & Placemat) by Quilting Treasures

May: Party Poppers using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Sprinkled Sweets using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Dino Craze using 10,000 B.C. by Benartex

June: Monster Mash by Quilting Treasures

June: Santa’s Sleigh using Starry Night by RJR Fabrics

Which hat do you think she picked?  Which one would you pick?

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This is what we decided — meet Miss Baby, Antebellum style!

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We are so glad the warm days are finally here!  We are having fun.  Hope you are enjoying your summer days as well!  Hugs to you all.

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Gray is not gloomy!  Gray is not blah!  Gray is the “new” white in many contemporary quilt and project designs, including mine! :)  I thought I would start the week off with a “gray” trunk show after sharing with you my Urban Oasis quilt last Friday.  Be sure to click on project names to view additional pictures of each quilt, or for information on how to download pattern instructions for free.

1.  Spiral Squared (McCall’s Quilting, January/February 2014)

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2.  2 Wishes (Quilts and More, Spring 2013)

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3.  Tango (Quilt Trends, Winter 2013)

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4.  Home is Where the Quilt is (Quilter’s World, December 2011)

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5.  Urban Oasis (Quilter’s World, Spring 2014)

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6.  Manhattan (Quilt Trends, Fall 2013)

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7.  Winter Wonderland (The Quilter, Holiday 2013)

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8.  Persian Rug (Annie’s Fat Quarter Shuffle)

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9.  Starry Dance (Annie’s Fat Quarter Shuffle)

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10.  Silver Lining (free to use pattern using Benartex’s Urban Oasis)

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11.  Urban Stars (Quilt Trends, Winter 2014)

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12.  Moonflower (free to use pattern, designed for Quilting Treasures)

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13.  Poisedon’s Adventure (using Benartex’s Neptune’s Dream)

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14.  Curious Cats (Fons and Porter Easy Quilts, Summer 2013)

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I hope you have enjoy the “grays”.  I will have more “gray” neutral quilts coming up!  Stay tuned. :)

Remember, gray doesn’t mean gloom…. and definitely doesn’t translate “gray hair” (*gulp*).  I will disclose my hair story very soon in the near future!

Thanks for stopping by.  Have yourself a lovely Monday and week!

***

Have you checked out my other Virtual Trunk Shows?  Look under “Virtual Trunk Show” in the right hand sidebar!

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Hello Friends – this is a terribly overdue post.  Due to various reasons, I wasn’t able to take pictures of my Urban Oasis quilt till a few days ago.  Urban Oasis was featured in Quilter’s World Spring 2014 issue.

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[image source: Quilter's World]

Urban Oasis is one of my gray quilts, as you can see. :)

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The design concept is based on making a quilt with a minimal number of pieced blocks, sort of like the orphan block treatment, with the finished size being enlarged by adding strips and borders.  So, if you have a few pieced blocks that you have made before, but don’t have enough to complete a full quilt, try adding strips here and there to add to the finished size  for a quick way to finish up a good sized quilt top.

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Here you see the template-pieced blocks.

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And here you see the strips.

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Urban Oasis uses fabrics from Benartex’s Urban Oasis fabric collection.  Click here to view the entire fabric range.

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You might recall I had designed for Benartex a free to use pattern, Silver Lining, using the same fabric range.  Click here for information on downloading the free pattern instructions.

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Back to Urban Oasis the quilt… quilting is done using Aurifil Mako 50 Cotton thread in lime green over Hobbs Tuscany Silk batting.  The lime green, I hope you can see it, gives a nice contrast to the gray in the quilt.

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The quilting motif is my allover Jester’s Hat motif that I talked about in my online “Learn to Machine Quilt” class.

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I hope you have like my “chic” Urban Oasis quilt.  I am really interested to know if you have other ways of treating orphan blocks and making them into bigger quilts!

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Thanks for stopping by, Dear Friends!  I hope you have a lovely and a most blessed weekend!

***

Click here to view the exhaustive list of my featured designs and projects.

My 2014 lineup to date —

Editorial features:

Annie’s Row Quilt Book (March 2014): Stardom

Annie’s Dazzling Diamond Quilts Book (May 2014): Solar Star

Fons & Porter’s Easy Quilts (Summer 2014): Teething Rings

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2014): Hurry Home

Generation Q (May/June 2014): Hole in the Wall

McCall’s Quilting (January/February 2014): Spiral Squared

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2014): Bird Watching

Popular Patchwork, UK (April 2014): Mending Fences

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Enchanted Forest

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Urban Stars

Quilter’s World (Spring 2014): Urban Oasis

Quilter’s World (Summer 2014): Starry Repetitions

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Farm Crossing

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Boxing Day

The Quilter (April/May 2014): All Squared Up

The Quilter (April/May 2014): Tulip Trail

The Quilter (June/July 2014): Garden View

Free to use designs:

January: Midori’s Place using Gramercy by Benartex

January: View on Lexington using Gramercy by Benartex

January: Everything’s Coming Up Rosey using English Rosey by Benartex

February: Verde (Quilt) by Quilting Treasures

February: Verde (Banner/Runner) by Quilting Treasures

March: Hot Topic by Quilting Treasures

March: Poseidon’s Adventure using Neptune’s Dream by Benartex

March: My Cozy Sweater using Palm Springs by Benartex

March: Wild Kingdom using Sew Rousseau by Benartex

April: Fun with Frosty (Quilt & Runner) by Quilting Treasures

April: The First Thanksgiving (Quilt & Runner & Placemat) by Quilting Treasures

May: Party Poppers using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Sprinkled Sweets using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Dino Craze using 10,000 B.C. by Benartex

June: Monster Mash by Quilting Treasures

Hello Friends!  It’s lovely to have you back.  A few months ago I was asked to play and design with a fun group of fabrics called Monster Mash, by Quilting Treasures.  Click here to view the entire fabric range.

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And I came up with the following twin-sized quilt design with boy and girl versions.  The “pathways” you see between the blocks are inspired by how the characters move in the game Pac-Man.

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High Res_Girl Quilt

The quilts also come with matching pillowcases.

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High Res_Girl Pillowcase

Click here to download boy twin quilt pattern instructions.

Click here to download girl twin quilt pattern instructions.

Click here to download boy pillowcase instructions.

Click here to download girl pillowcase instructions.

Thanks for stopping by!  I am off to more designing for now.  It’s been a full week.  I shall talk to you later!  Hugs to you all.

***

My 2014 free to use designs:

[My free to use designs from previous years are listed under "FREE PATTERNS" on the side bar.]

January: Midori’s Place using Gramercy by Benartex

January: View on Lexington using Gramercy by Benartex

January: Everything’s Coming Up Rosey using English Rosey by Benartex

February: Verde (Quilt) by Quilting Treasures

February: Verde (Banner/Runner) by Quilting Treasures

March: Hot Topic by Quilting Treasures

March: Poseidon’s Adventure using Neptune’s Dream by Benartex

March: My Cozy Sweater using Palm Springs by Benartex

March: Wild Kingdom using Sew Rousseau by Benartex

April: Fun with Frosty (Quilt & Runner) by Quilting Treasures

April: The First Thanksgiving (Quilt & Runner & Placemat) by Quilting Treasures

May: Party Poppers using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Sprinkled Sweets using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Dino Craze using 10,000 B.C. by Benartex

June: Monster Mash by Quilting Treasures

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Hello Friends, I am happy to share with you my Solar Star runner project today because it is rather warm where I am. Solar Star is featured in Annie’s newly released quilt book, Dazzling Diamond Quilts.   The book is available for purchase from Annie’s online catalog.

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[image source: Annie's]

Solar Star uses diamond patches in its center feather star block.  You will notice there is only one block — that is intentional!  Solar Star is designed for those who want to try out diamond piecing technique, but don’t necessarily want to commit to a full quilt project.  So, trying out the technique with just constructing one block seems the best way to finish up a project without too much duress! :)  Of course, the project would make a quick to complete project for the advanced quilter as well!

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Just add border strips to the sides of the block to length the runner – and voilayou will have yourself a striking runner!

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You probably noticed the Benartex Palm Springs fabrics used are the same fabrics used in Tulip Trail (quilt picture is shown below – do scroll down – in other Palm Springs related images).  Click here to view the entire fabric range.  Solar Star uses the warmer swatches of the collection, while Tulip Trail uses the cooler colorway.

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Now about the quilting… quilting is done using Aurifil Mako 50 Cotton thread over Fairfield‘s American Spirit Classic cotton batting.  You can see I have quilted around the feather star to look like a large “Dahlia”, with pebbles and swirls in the negative areas.

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Aurifil Mako 50 Cotton threads are perfect for quilting the small pebbles without any thread buildup.

Click here to view examples for pebble power.

Click here to read about my Thread Talk post on pebbles.

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Here you see the quilting on the other parts of the runner.  I quilted on the fabric print.  See more examples here.

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Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you enjoyed Solar Star, and more importantly your summer season!

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***

Other projects made/designed with Benartex’s Palm Spring fabrics:

1.  Tulip Trail (The Quilter, April/May 2014)

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2.  Cozy Sweater (Benartex Free to Use Pattern)

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***

My 2014 lineup to date —

Editorial features:

Annie’s Row Quilt Book (March 2014): Stardom

Annie’s Dazzling Diamond Quilts Book (May 2014): Solar Star

Fons & Porter’s Easy Quilts (Summer 2014): Teething Rings

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2014): Hurry Home

Generation Q (May/June 2014): Hole in the Wall

McCall’s Quilting (January/February 2014): Spiral Squared

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2014): Bird Watching

Popular Patchwork, UK (April 2014): Mending Fences

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Enchanted Forest

Quilt Trends (Winter 2014): Urban Stars

Quilter’s World (Spring 2014): Urban Oasis

Quilter’s World (Summer 2014): Starry Repetitions

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Farm Crossing

The Quilter (December 2013/January 2014): Boxing Day

The Quilter (April/May 2014): All Squared Up

The Quilter (April/May 2014): Tulip Trail

The Quilter (June/July 2014): Garden View

Free to use designs:

January: Midori’s Place using Gramercy by Benartex

January: View on Lexington using Gramercy by Benartex

January: Everything’s Coming Up Rosey using English Rosey by Benartex

February: Verde (Quilt) by Quilting Treasures

February: Verde (Banner/Runner) by Quilting Treasures

March: Hot Topic by Quilting Treasures

March: Poseidon’s Adventure using Neptune’s Dream by Benartex

March: My Cozy Sweater using Palm Springs by Benartex

March: Wild Kingdom using Sew Rousseau by Benartex

April: Fun with Frosty (Quilt & Runner) by Quilting Treasures

April: The First Thanksgiving (Quilt & Runner & Placemat) by Quilting Treasures

May: Party Poppers using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Sprinkled Sweets using Paintbox/Shadows by Benartex

May: Dino Craze using 10,000 B.C. by Benartex

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