Gingerbread Men Shenanigans

Hello Friends!  Happy Monday, and Happy Week to you!  I hope you are well.

A nice weekend for me always involves a little bit a handwork.  Here is one that I am currently working on – using Aurifil cotton embroidery floss.  If you are curious about this project — check out my Instagram feed under handle ivory_spring!  It is a fun little stitch-along I am doing with famed quilt designer Susan Ache!

Louisa20201

I am also very happy to show you the last gingerbread man block I made for my for-sale pattern You Can’t Catch Me!

Click HERE to purchase the pattern pdf download.

IMG-0170

I have made all 24 gingerbread man blocks — and here is the 24th block!

Gingerbread Man 24

And here is the entire line-up!  You will notice almost most of the browns I used aren’t Christmas-related.  Point is, these gingerbread man blocks will work with ANY brown, tan, or orange fabrics you have in your stash.  So often, the brown stash isn’t considered for main fabrics for quilt blocks — the gingerbread man blocks are for your browns, tans and orange to shine!

gingerbread man line up

So —- here are a few tips to make your quilt even more personalized if you are making it!

  1.  Notice that all 24 blocks use 24 different brown/tan/orange fabrics.  You can certainly do that, or you can use 12 FQs to cut for (2) blocks each.
  2.  Instead of using the same background as stated in the pattern, I decided I wanted to make my quilt as scrappy as I can.  So, I actually use 24 different fabrics for the background.  You can easily do that by just cutting what you need for each block from each fabric.  So for my 24 blocks, I used 48 different fabrics – how’s that for scrappy?
  3. I found it much easier to keep track of things grouping the pieces according to the head, arm and leg sections.

Gingerbread Man pieces

4.  The blocks go really quickly — EXCEPT you need to pay attention to the pieces for the leg sections.  You make the leg sections mirror-imaging each other!   Ask me how I know. :)

You might find it helpful to jot down what pieces go where on this bonus block diagram.  Download the block pdf HERE.

Block

5.  And who says you have to make all the blocks suggested in the pattern?  Make fewer blocks to make a wallhanging or tabletopper!

I look forward to seeing your version of You Can’t Catch Me!

Now it’s time for me to teach the gingerbread men to get along by making the heart blocks!

Visit my etsy shop HERE.  Thread collections always ship free.

Follow me on Instagram HERE.

And — Karen Miller and I are having our second Free Motion Quilting Retreat this year in Hamilton, MO!  Click HERE for details!

What works for me and more!

Hello Friends, I hope the New Year has gone well for you so far!  Please know that I really appreciate the comments you left on my New Year post.  While I am not able to respond to every comment, please know that I read ALL of them!

So, the joke was northern VA ended 2019 without any snow!  Well, we finally got our first round last week… not much.  Maybe 1 1/2″ or so.  But it seems like the whole area comes to a halt whenever we get snow here, regardless of the amount!

Snowflake Quilt

And then of course, snow day is sew day!

WORKS FOR ME!  I was given a 5″ x 8″ mini cutting matt last year, and have put it to good use!  You know how sometimes you cut a piece, and then only realize after you sew it, the measurements aren’t quite right?  That happens to me, especially with smaller pieces.  So I now have this mini cutting matt right by my machine, and I would measure my pieces on the grid printed on the cutting matt when I am not 100%  sure of the measurements before I sew them together!  The mini cutting matt is also where I mark my pieces if I need to.

Works for Me

I just released another NEW PATTERN – Parchels in the Post!  This is FQ Friendly, and a super fun and easy one!  Just add fabrics that catch your fancy!  You can purchase the pattern HERE!  My for sale patterns are non-fabric-specific so you can easily customize the finished look of your quilts.

Remember, all my thread collections ship free when purchased on my Etsy shop.

Parcels in the Post Cover Photo

My Parcels in the Post sample here is made with At Home fabrics by Moda!

9845E2EC-D861-4EA9-8EE5-365E2B7FE1BA

Before I go, I also want to let you know that I had an appearance in American Patchwork & Quilting’s podcast a couple of weeks ago!  I revealed my deepest and darkest thoughts — just kidding!  I think I stammered through the entire thing, and I squaeked like a mouse.  However, if you are brave enough to listen to it — the link is HERE.

APQ Podcast

Or scroll to the bottom of the show notes HERE!

That catches me up with you till next time!  In the meantime, be on a lookout for the Spring 2020 issue of Quilts and More!  I might have something fun to go with that issue when it releases on Jan 17!

Hugs to you all!

Happy 2020!

Hello my Quilting Friends!  I want to wish you a very happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!  I hope you have had a wonderful holiday season!

EFC68649-5EA7-44D7-9742-0763FB36B96D

One of the most asked questions (besides if I actually sleep) is how many quilts I have.  I had a vague idea, but wasn’t sure.  I initially thought I had around 250.  Last year, I did “a quilt a day” posts on my Instagram feed to see if I have enough quilts to make 300.  By the end of the year, I not only did have 300, I actually had over 300.   Due to the hectic pace my life has take over the last couple of years, I have heavily relied on Instagram rather than my blog to keep in touch with quilting friends.  I am able to answer questions at the school parking lot on my phone with Instagram quickly and easily enough.  So, if you haven’t followed me on Instagram, I am hoping you would — just do a search for my name Wendy Sheppard, or ivory_spring.

IMG-0699

Miss Baby hit double digit last year, and is definitely keeping me busy!  She has been doing cross-stitching for 5 years now (hard to believe).

aug15h

aug15e

mount-vernon

She recently delved into hand embroidery.  She ended up liking hand embroidery much better!  In her own words, “Hand embroidery is stitching and daydreaming at the same time!”

56576045_2332419787037798_4527549079762497785_n

And her latest on her second thread collection for Aurifil:

woodland-fun-and-friends4

woodland-fun-and-friends3

woodland-spool-en-dids

After many years of comtemplating, I also finally took the plunge to take my designs/patterns directly to quilters by make them for sale to quilters!  Each pattern you see represents many hours of hard work pouring over the words, calculations, measurements etc by yours truly, and two lovely ladies Sue and Laurel!  My for-sale patterns are not fabric specific so that quilters can just add fabrics.  Many of them will be Fat Quarter friendly, and SCRAPPY!  So, get collecting those fat quarters, and don’t throw away your scraps!

Here is one I released right before Christmas.

IMG-0170

IMG-0169

IMG-0168

This is a totally new adventure for me — but my patterns and thread collections are available on my Etsy shop:  https://www.etsy.com/shop/ivoryspring — I will be updating my little shop with patterns within the next few weeks!

New Year definitely brings new projects, but I am also trying to work on my WIPs this year!  How about you?

And with that, I shall wrap up my New Year post with these words by Frances R. Havergal.  I used to sing this hymn during New Year church service growing up.

  1. Another year is dawning, dear Father, let it be
    In working or in waiting, another year with Thee;
    Another year of progress, another year of praise,
    Another year of proving Thy presence all the days.
  2. Another year of mercies, of faithfulness and grace,
    Another year of gladness in the shining of Thy face;
    Another year of leaning upon Thy loving breast;
    Another year of trusting, of quiet, happy rest.
  3. Another year of service, of witness for Thy love,
    Another year of training for holier work above;
    Another year is dawning, dear Father, let it be
    On earth, or else in Heaven, another year for Thee.

I shall catch up with you later, hopefully very soon!

The last day of Christmas in July…

… and the STOCKINGS ARE HUNG!

This is my Christmas quilt, featured in the Autumn 2019 issue of Quilter’s World — on newsstands now!  Complete pattern is in the magazine.

The fabrics I used are Hello My Deer from Michael Miller Fabrics.  These prints are adorable, and they really highlight traditional red and green Christmas colors!

These blocks are incredibly easy to make!

A few tricks:

#1.  We will be dealing with some small pieces to construct this block — as small as 1″ x 1″ squares for the sew and flip method at the bottom corners of stocking cuff.  I like to starch-press to stiffen my small pieces.  That way they won’t be wonky when sewn, and you get a nice crisp seam!

#2.  Time saving tip:  the C and G pieces in the instructions can actually be combined and cut as (1) 2″ x 6″ piece.  That’s what I did here.

To show you how the design is versatile from whimsical to traditional, here is the quilt in traditional floral fabrics:

And here is a version with non-Christmas themed cat fabrics!

I hope you will have making your own Stockings are hung!

One final thought… For an additional personalized touch, how about adding names of your family on the stocking cuffs?

And with that, let me be the first to wish you a Merry Christmas this year!

My little blurb in Modern by the Yard

Good morning, and happy Monday to you, Friends!  I hope you had a great Father’s Day weekend.

This is a new one for me, as you will find my little blurb a fun twist on the sawtooth star block in the latest issue of Bernatex’s Modern by the Yard issue!

Some of you might know that I am on a quest to see how many sawtooth star quilts I can make.  Here are a few I have made with Benartex’s fabrics.

IMG_9820

2199840311_01A_Stardom_new

So, it was really fun to be asked to add a bit of a twist to a well loved block.  Here goes with my twist, done with Benartex’s fabrics Sew Excited fabrics (current).  I named this block It Has To Be Fun!

Because it really does have to be fun when you quilt!  And it’s definitely fun when I get to experiment with the different looks.

And how about we put the block in a couple of quilt settings?

I hope I have piqued your interest — read about my and a few other designers’ take on sawtooth star blocks, and more about fun quilty snippets by click HERE.

Happy week to you all — I will have more to share later this week!  Stay tuned.

Free Motion Quilting Retreat at Hamilton, MO

Hamilton2.png

Friends, we are already 3rd week into Miss Baby’s summer holiday!  It’s been a busy and happy summer so far.  I love having my baby home with me.  In the summer time, I also double as a homeschool Mom.  I was just telling someone the other day that I used to be able to just wing it with the learning material, not anymore!  Now I have to prep.  I am also using this summer to train Miss Baby on some essential life skills.  So, I haven’t had to do as much laundry this summer because she is doing it.  So, I am definitely NOT complaining!

So, here’s to wishing you all a wonderful summer!

***

Today, I am VERY excited to announce that I will be heading toward the midwest to Missouri this Fall!

Hamilton1

[Credit all goes to Karen for this fun image — notice how our van is decorated with free-motion quilting motifs, our front license plate, AND our Aurifil bumper sticker!  You can’t quite see because of the texts above the van.  If the texts weren’t there, you would have seen the piles of quilts we are bringing for the trunk show, and I think somewhere in there are our machines, hopefully, safely tucked in between layers of quilts! Oh…. and it would appear we have a SELF-DRIVING van from the picture so that Karen and I can concentrate on gabbing the whole way there!]

THE beloved Karen Miller and I are doing a double-team and bringing free-motion quilting fun to Hamilton, MO this fall!

WHEN: September 23-25, 2019 — timing is great because this is RIGHT before Missouri Star Quilt Company birthday bash!

WHERE:  7200 sq foot Event Center at Hotel Hamilton (click here to see the beautiful grounds and amenities)

EVENT WEBSITE: CLICK HERE

FEE:  $325 includes lodging of 3 nights of retreat style sleeps in beautifully adorn room, meals (3 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner), lectures and classes* – Check Event Website for further details

SOMETHING DIFFERENT: This is a fun retreat format built on friendship!  Karen and I are friends, and would love to be your quilting friends!  You will more than likely make new friends there as well.  PLUS — with Karen and I both being there, we will double the insights in machine quilting!

BRIEF SCHEDULE:

September 23 Evening – Lecture on Aurifilosophy and Trunk Show – we share why we are Auri-fanatics!

September 24 All Day – Free motion Quilting Basics with hands-on fun at the machines

September 25 All Day – Venturing out of the basics into feathers and background fillers with hands-on fun at the machines

In between — at night you will have free time either to just relax with friends or sew!  I will more than likely join you with my handwork projects.

PERKS:  Sewing at your own 6′ space (no invasion of personal space!), swag bags from Aurifil and possible more swags, snacks and best of all confidence in machine quilting, and friendship!

COME JOIN US!  IT WILL BE FUN!!!  WE WILL HAVE SNIPPETS to share soon– so, watch our blogs!

Friends who machine quilt together,

… stay together!

Hello Friends, I trust that this post finds you well.  I hope you had a lovely Easter Resurrection weekend.

In case you aren’t aware, I want to share about a feature done on Aurifil’s blog about the Mystery Quiltalong I have hosted with Karen!  Click here to read about my friendship with Karen, and where that’s taken both of us.  The quiltalong is made possible because Karen and I are fast friends.  And we hope that you will grab along a few friends and join in the fun.

In case you missed it, we are going to have fabulous giveaways for those of you who complete this quilt-along project!!! Click HERE for details.  Email either myself or Karen pictures of your completed quilt by May 3!!!

Have a great week, Friends!  I am in full pattern writing and design mode.  I will check in with you later this week.

All over and back again!

Hello Friends, I hope you are doing well!  Can you believe we are already in April?  It’s been a hectic year for me, but it’s been a productive one so far.

I was in CA late January and taught 5 classes on domestic machine and feather quilting at Road to CA quilt show.  I made really sweet friends -and want to thank everyone who took my classes.

I also did an Aurifilosophy presentation close to home to chat about all things-Aurifil!  Please feel free to contact me if you would like me to speak to your group about why Aurifil is my thread of choice.  The fact is, I have exclusively used Aurifil threads since 2006.  You may find out more information here.  Here is a picture of me an the other Aurifilosophers from Market at Houston last year.

Two weeks ago, I taught at Piecemakers Quilt Guild in Cumming, GA.  We had a great 2-days working on domestic machine quilting techniques!

We worked on this fun squirrel project solely with threads after we learned the basics of domestic machine quilting.

***I will be teaching again at Quilters Hall of Fame in July!  I hope I will see you there.  Click here for more information. 

***Feel free to contact me as well if you are interested to have me come teach at your shop/guild.

Other bits of fun news… you might have seen this sailboat quilt on the cover of Keepsake Quilting Spring 2019 catalog!

Many of you have written to ask if you could just purchase the pattern.  Unfortunately, the answer is no.  This is an exclusive collaborations I did with Windham Fabrics and Keepsake Quilting.  Exclusive collaborations are a big part of how I make my living.

And as I pull back from magazine work — that means you will see less of my work in magazines this year– I am working to bring my designs and patterns directly to you!  Here is a sneak peak of one of the patterns.

Meanwhile, Miss Baby turned 10, and she is keeping herself and me very busy!  This is her latest completed needle and thread project.  Follow me on Instagram (ivory_spring) for more scoop on Miss Baby’s fiber adventures.

Did I mention to you Miss Baby and I are co-authoring a mother/daughter quilting book?  Yes, we are!  She is VERY excited that she is going to be an author!

Also, some of you have been patiently waiting for my Song of Williamsburg thread collection to ship to stores.  The collection debuted at Fall Market last year in Houston.

This is a collection of Aurifil’s 80 wt that you CAN use to quilt on your domestic machine.  It is cotton, but the threads feel like they are silk.  I have curated the collection to include versatile colors for domestic machine quilting as well as hand applique!

This bird motif will be available as a FREE PATTERN soon — subscribe to Aurifil’s newsletter here for the announcement on the pattern.  This bird motif is inspired by an old bird bottle design excavated in Colonial Williamsburg.

You can now purchase this thread collection at 20% off for $39.99 HERE.

Speaking of hand applique, I have been doing a little of that as well!

That’s it from me this time, Dear Friends.  I am making a point to not be stranger on my own blog!  Do let me know what you’ve been up to!  Take care, till next time.

Joint Venture with Karen Miller: Mystery Quilt Along – Part 11

HELLO Friends!  I hope you have been well.  In case you haven’t kept track, today is the 96th day of the year!  I know because I have posted 96 quilts on Instagram for my A Quilt A Day series!  I just posted the 96th quilt.  If you haven’t checked out my feed on Instagram, look me up there at ivory_spring, or just do a search on my name “Wendy Sheppard”.

Jan 7: Announcement post
Jan 21:  Planning, basting, batting, etc
Jan 28:  Stabilization quilting or just to catch up
Feb 4, Feb 11: Inside center panel
Feb 25: Top and Bottom Rectangles
March 4: Top and Bottom Squares
March 11: Left and Right Side panels
Mach 18: Narrow Sashing
April 1: Outside (wider) Border
**April 8: Binding & Hanging

MAKE SURE YOU READ THROUGH THE END FOR GIVEAWAY INFORMATION!

We are at ROUND 11 and our last round today!  It’s been so fun to quilt along with my dear friend, Karen, and YOU.  I hope you have had an enjoyable time exploring the ins and outs of domestic machine quilting.

My main take away, besides enjoying machine quilting on my machine, has been the time I made to keep in touch with Karen!  Karen is a busy lady — she does a lot as far as educating machine quilters.  So, it’s been a blessing to chat/text with her about our quilt-along!  SO — as you can see, just grab a friend or two, local or by proxy  — and you will have a fun common project to work on to improve your machine quilting skills, as well as keeping in touch with friends!

***

In the event of you might still be gathering your supplies, don’t worry! That’s okay — jump in when you are able to. Click HERE where Karen keeps a list of shops where you can purchase the supplies.

2019c

I have heard positive responses from many regarding my book.  THANK YOU!

You may order my book from:

Connecting Threads

Fox Chapel Publishing

Amazon

or email me for signed copies!

I will be using Aurifli 50 wt threads from my Subtle Strings collection.  You may read more about the collection here, and here.  You may order your collection here for $99.99 (regularly selling for $140)!  DO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS GREAT PRICE!

Meanwhile, you may also order the collection HERE and HERE.

My Subtle Strings colors 50wt threads that are specially selected to achieve a subtle contrast effect in the quilting.  That is to say, we get to quilt with pretty colors on our quilts, but the colors aren’t really visible from afar and are not competing with the overall look of the quilt, until one looks at the quilting close up.  These colors are also perfect for piecing, machine or hand applique — definitely my go-to!  Why limit yourself to using only beige and light brown, or white?!  LIFE’S TOO SHORT!

subtle1-1

subtle2

Today, we are finishing up our quilt by attaching a hanging sleeve and the binding! 

If you remember, we left off with this last week — with a wonky quilted quilt because it’s been handled in various ways during the quilting process.

What I normally do is to lay the quilt down on a tile floor, spritz the quilt damp with just water from a spray bottle.  Pat down the bumps on the quilt, and let the quilt dry overnight at least.  You might have to tug the quilt a bit sometimes to make sure the quilt lays down flat when being dampened.  By the time it’s dry, the quilt should be flat!

THEN I square up my quilt using my 12 /12″ x 12 1/2″ ruler.  Some of you have the 20″ x 20″ — that’s even better.  Here you can see that I have squared up a corner of my quilt.

Once squared up, I zig zag to finish the raw trimmed edge of my quilt before attaching the binding and hanging sleeve.  Finishing the raw edge helps me achieve a “flat” effect after the binding is attached, and crisp corners.

I handstitch my binding down — with a John James #7 long darner and Aurifil 28wt thread.  I like the strength of the heavier weight of 28wt for binding.

Here I have quilt, bound and everything!  See the crisp corners?

Friends, this has been SEW MUCH FUN!

The textures from machine quilting never ceases to dazzle!

AND NOW ABOUT THE GIVEAWAY:

Karen and I have some fun giveaways for those of you who complete your quilt!  Email either of us pictures of your completed quilt between now and 4/26.  And on 4/29, we will announce winners!  The goodies will be GOOD!  You won’t want to miss out.  

And with that, let’s go visit Karen — click HERE to go to Karen’s blog!

Have a great week, Dear Friends!

Joint Venture with Karen Miller: Mystery Quilt Along – Part 10

HELLO Friends!  I hope you have been well.  In case you haven’t kept track, today is the 89th day of the year!  I know because I have posted 89 quilts on Instagram for my A Quilt A Day series!  I just posted the 89th quilt.  If you haven’t checked out my feed on Instagram, look me up there at ivory_spring, or just do a search on my name “Wendy Sheppard”.

Jan 7: Announcement post
Jan 21:  Planning, basting, batting, etc
Jan 28:  Stabilization quilting or just to catch up
Feb 4, Feb 11: Inside center panel
Feb 25: Top and Bottom Rectangles
March 4: Top and Bottom Squares
March 11: Left and Right Side panels
Mach 18: Narrow Sashing
***April 1: Outside (wider) Border
April 8: Binding & Hanging

We are at ROUND 10 today!  It’s been so fun to quilt along with my dear friend, Karen, and YOU.  I hope you have had an enjoyable time exploring the ins and outs of domestic machine quilting.  I was just teaching at the Piecemakers Quilt Guild at Cumming, GA, and brought my QAL sample — and so many ladies loved the concept, as well as the panel to practice on their domestic machine quilting skills.

***

In the event of you might still be gathering your supplies, don’t worry! That’s okay — jump in when you are able to. Click HERE where Karen keeps a list of shops where you can purchase the supplies.

2019c

I have heard positive responses from many regarding my book.  THANK YOU!

You may order my book from:

Connecting Threads

Fox Chapel Publishing

Amazon

or email me for signed copies!

I will be using Aurifli 50 wt threads from my Subtle Strings collection.  You may read more about the collection here, and here.  You may order your collection here for $99.99 (regularly selling for $140)!  DO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS GREAT PRICE!

Meanwhile, you may also order the collection HERE and HERE.

My Subtle Strings colors 50wt threads that are specially selected to achieve a subtle contrast effect in the quilting.  That is to say, we get to quilt with pretty colors on our quilts, but the colors aren’t really visible from afar and are not competing with the overall look of the quilt, until one looks at the quilting close up.  These colors are also perfect for piecing, machine or hand applique — definitely my go-to!  Why limit yourself to using only beige and light brown, or white?!  LIFE’S TOO SHORT!

subtle1-1

subtle2

Today we are focusing on the last part of the actual domestic machine quilting on our quilt — the outer border.  

If you remember from the planning phase, I had marked the word BAA… on the outer border.

Now it’s time to quilt those words, and add background quilting after the words are quilted!  Again, I am using colors from my Subtle Strings to quilt.  These subtle colors work so well in just about any setting for domestic machine quilting.  This is the yellow from the collection, and I would like to draw your attention to the letter I quilted.

Friends, I quilted around the letter “A” EIGHT times without any thread buildup!!!  I have done that with the Aurifil 80wt, but this is my first time doing it with the 50wt from my Subtle Strings collection.  I am more than thrilled with the result. 

Quilting the letters multiple times help them to stand out in the final look.  So, if you haven’t tried to stitch around shapes multiple times, try it out — with Aurifil’s 50wt!

And here is the pink!  Same thing, quilted around 8 times.

Now, I didn’t start and stop with each letter.  I just filled in the background quilting moving from letter to letter.  After I quilted the word BAA, I worked to finish up the background quilting in the section which BAA was in.  

I marked 4 BAAs on the outer border.  I used 4 different colors for each BAA section.

I want to show you the background quilting between the letters.  I used a mix of the nifty little Ss, pebbles as well as feathers to fill in the background.  They were all quilted off the seat of my pants, totally random, and just according to what I felt like quilting at the time I did them.

And we will just go around the quilt see how the different sections are quilted.

And there you have it!!!

It’s about texture, and how the light reflects on it!

I tell my students not to be bogged down by the instantaneous “imperfections” while they are quilting.  I always notice myself as I am quilting certain stitches aren’t quite they should be.  However, if I leave the piece alone for 2-3 days, and come back to look at the piece, those instantaneous imperfections just magically disappear!  I don’t see them anymore!!

Now, you will notice that your piece is wavy and wonky after the border is quilted…. totally normal!  Next week, I will share with you how I deal with this situation.

Alrightie, Friends — off to machine quilting you go!  Now, let’s see what Karen has to share with us.  I know it will be something good…  Click HERE to go to Karen’s blog.  Happy Quilting!  See you next week for our last installment.

Joint Venture with Karen Miller: Mystery Quilt Along – Part 9

Jan 7: Announcement post
Jan 21:  Planning, basting, batting, etc
Jan 28:  Stabilization quilting or just to catch up
Feb 4, Feb 11: Inside center panel
Feb 25: Top and Bottom Rectangles
March 4: Top and Bottom Squares
March 11: Left and Right Side panels
Mach 18: Narrow Sashing
April 1: Outside (wider) Border
April 8: Binding & Hanging

***

Happy Monday, and Happy Week, Friends!  It’s time to catch up work on some domestic machine quilting again!  I cant’ believe we are at Round 9!

***

In the event of you might still be gathering your supplies, don’t worry! That’s okay — jump in when you are able to. Click HERE where Karen keeps a list of shops where you can purchase the supplies.

2019c

I have heard positive responses from many regarding my book.  THANK YOU!

You may order my book from:

Connecting Threads

Fox Chapel Publishing

Amazon

or email me for signed copies!

I will be using Aurifli 50 wt threads from my Subtle Strings collection.  You may read more about the collection here, and here.  You may order your collection here for $99.99 (regularly selling for $140)!  The collection is IN STOCK again as of this morning!!!

Meanwhile, you may also order the collection HERE and HERE.

My Subtle Strings colors are specially selected to achieve a subtle contrast effect in the quilting.  That is to say, we get to quilt with pretty colors on our quilts, but the colors aren’t really visible from afar and are not competing with the overall look of the quilt, until one looks at the quilting close up.  These colors are also perfect for piecing, machine or hand applique — definitely my go-to!  Why limit yourself to using only beige and light brown, or white?!  LIFE’S TOO SHORT!

subtle1-1

subtle2

Today’s installment is about quilting the narrow sashing in between the panel blocks.  I am going to adapt the nifty little S’s (page 52 in my book Stitching Pathways) and elongate them to go to the sashing.  Once you get used to the nifty little S’s, you will find that it is a great go-to, as you can modify the sizes as you wish.  If you want a motif that gives an airy feel and flow, the little S’s are great!

So schematically (shown in my chicken-scratchy sort of way), you would start just quilting the S’s in like waves along the narrow sashing (purple), then you would go back with almost echoing S’, in the opposite direction (pink).  Then, fill in with smaller waves or S’s until you are satisfied with the look (navy).

Quilted in real life.  The really neat thing about this motif is tht the S’s don’t have to be uniformly spaced, so, that takes the pressure off!

And notice I just rounded the S’s off when I ventured into the outer border territory (bottom right).

And there you have it for today’s installment!  Taking domestic machine quilting bite-sized baby steps is the way to go!

Karen and I will be taking next Monday off — but we will back on April 1 to reveal how we have quilted the outer border.  Have a lovely week, and Happy Quilting.

Now, let’s see what Karen has to share with us.  I know it will be something good…  Click HERE to go to Karen’s blog.  Happy Quilting!  See you next time!

Joint Venture with Karen Miller: Mystery Quilt Along – Part 8

Jan 7: Announcement post
Jan 21:  Planning, basting, batting, etc
Jan 28:  Stabilization quilting or just to catch up
Feb 4, Feb 11: Inside center panel
Feb 25: Top and Bottom Rectangles
March 4: Top and Bottom Squares
***March 11: Left and Right Side panels
Mach 18: Narrow Sashing
April 1: Outside (wider) Border
April 8: Binding & Hanging

***

Hello Friends, it’s Monday again — can you believe it?  It’s been busy around here, but all’s well.  I hope things are going well at your end too, especially in the free-motion machine quilting department.  I hope those baby steps have paid off.  Karen and I are having great fun hosting this mystery quilt-along, and we sure have enjoyed seeing your progress pictures.  Keep sharing them!

***

In the event of you might still be gathering your supplies, don’t worry! That’s okay — jump in when you are able to. Click HERE where Karen keeps a list of shops where you can purchase the supplies.

2019c

I have heard positive responses from many regarding my book.  THANK YOU!

You may order my book from:

Connecting Threads

Fox Chapel Publishing

Amazon

or email me for signed copies!

I will be using Aurifli 50 wt threads from my Subtle Strings collection.  You may read more about the collection here, and here.  You may order your collection here for $99.99 (regularly selling for $140)!  The collection is IN STOCK again as of this morning!!!

Meanwhile, you may also order the collection HERE and HERE.

My Subtle Strings colors are specially selected to achieve a subtle contrast effect in the quilting.  That is to say, we get to quilt with pretty colors on our quilts, but the colors aren’t really visible from afar and are not competing with the overall look of the quilt, until one looks at the quilting close up.  These colors are also perfect for piecing, machine or hand applique — definitely my go-to!  Why limit yourself to using only beige and light brown, or white?!  LIFE’S TOO SHORT!

subtle1-1

subtle2

So today’s installment is about quilting the two side panels.  You may use motifs from these pages from my book “Stitching Pathways” to quilt the side panels: 31,38-39, 46-49.  If you aren’t sure about quilting straightaway on fabric, feel free to break out a pad and pencil and practice doodle on paper first, following the “stitching path” I shared in the book.  I have heard from many of you who have found the stitching paths helpful in wrapping your mind on who to go about quilting the different motifs.

I chose a simpler version of the swirly motif on pages 38-39 for the side panels.  I love this motif, and have used it A LOT in my quilts.  I love this motif for the following reasons:

#1.  Swirls are great staples in my domestic machine quilting toolbox.  I wanted to make sure we have a chance to quilt with swirls in our quilt-along project.

#2.  I always tell my students mastering swirls and the variations opens up a whole new adventure of endless possibilities like feather quilting!

#3.  The swirly motif I am using (page 38-39) is a forgiving allover motif — there is not equal-distance echoing, and you can add ornamental bibs and bobs along the way.  It’s probably my favorite free-hand allover motif when I am quilting on a quilt that has busy prints.  Once mastered, you will find that this is QUICK motif to quilt in that you can cover a lot of ground with this motif in a short amount of time.

SO, here are my side panels, quilted.

You will notice that I didn’t quilt the rectangular border around the panels.  The reason I am not quite sure what to do with the border.  So I am keeping that un-quilted for now until I figure out what to do when I bring in quilting for the sashing area.  I have an idea, but I think I am going to mull over it a little more.

I am using the light blue in my Subtle Strings collection — again, you can see the blue isn’t screaming at you.  I always say, subtlety goes a long way! :)

And now it’s time to step back and look at your quilt from a slight distance — the textures, the personalities, the personal style!!!  Remember, quilting is a celebration of YOU!

Alrightie, Friends — I hope you continue to have fun in this mystery quilt along.  Now, let’s go what Karen has to share with us.  I know it will be something good…  Click HERE to go to Karen’s blog.  Happy Quilting!  See you next time!