My turn: Windham Fabrics’ Back to School Blog Hop

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Hello Friends, I am not sure if you have had a chance to follow Windham Fabrics’ Back to School Blog Hop the last few days… but if you haven’t, this is the schedule:

AND – IT’S MY TURN TODAY!!!  And be sure to read through the end for a chance to win fabrics!

Background story: I had used fabrics from Whistler’s Studio’s We Share One World group to design a super panel quilt (64″ x 84″) a while back.  The design is available as a free pattern you can download here.  You can then purchase the panel from your local quilt shop to make the project, or you can purchase the kit from Missouri Star Quilt Company.  Click here to purchase the kit.  And you get 299 pts for Quilter’s Cash!

I love this quilt panel because it is very educational – and provides easy and convenient teaching moments between a child and a parent (or grandparent, or teacher).  It’s always easy to find baby/infant quilt designs, but sometimes the designs are a little hard to come by for school-aged children!  So this super 64″ x 84″ panel quilt would be a fun and easy one to make a child to encourage learning.

We Share One World is a really fun fabric group.  First, it has that nifty world map super panel with tremendous educational value.  Then, it has these prints with Hello in different languages. Miss Baby had lots of fun looking for the versions of Hello she knows.  I really like the children of world print included in the group.  And then, there are the animals of the world print!  It’s just a fun, fun group!  Click here to view the fabrics, and ask your local quilt shops to carry the line!

Now about that blog hop project… For the blog hop project, I decided to make a companion geography wallhanging to go with the super panel quilt!

This time I appliqued the map of United States myself… and used a star button to indicate where I live.

It was really fun working on this little wallhanging because it brought by memories of my elementary school days in south-east Asia.  My father raised me to be an informed child through geography, and I will forever be grateful for that.  I also remember being in a race with a boy in class about world trivia.  Some days, he beat me… some days he didn’t.  In my quest to beat him fair and square every time, I kept a notebook with different world facts for an ever-ready come back, ha! I haven’t thought about that little episode of my life for a while… I wonder what happened to the boy.  I do remember that he is the son of my mother’s schoolmate.

One thing I would like to share about this little project is that… I got the machine quilting idea from the red tonal grid fabric.   So often, the quilting motif is right before our eyes. The grid is irregular, so I just used my walking foot to go with the flow, and quilted irregular grid on the rest of the quilt even where I didn’t have the grid print fabric placed in the quilt.  I think the irregular grid quilting kept the lighthearted feel of the kid-friendly wallhanging.

This fabric line also has the landmarks of the world print that I used for the backing… more educational opportunities!

Isn’t it amazing these days how spoiled we quilters are with the different fabrics afforded to us by the different fabric companies?  If you need another excuse to buy more fabrics, don’t forget to use “education of the younger generation”, ha!

Thanks for stopping by, I hope you have had some fun with me today looking at my “geography class” wallhanging!

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For a chance to win fabrics, leave a comment on Windham Fabrics’ blog.  Here are the official rules:

Be sure to follow Windham Fabrics’ blog and comment on their post for a chance to win a Fat Quarter bundle of the line!

The giveaway will be open from now until 8PM PST on Friday, September 22, 2017. The winner for this bundle will be picked at random and we will announce the name HERE on Monday, September 25, 2017.

This giveaway is open to everyone, USA and International.

If you’re a “no reply” or anonymous commenter, please remember to include your email address in your comment!

HAPPY HOPPING!!!  REMEMBER, LEAVE YOUR COMMENT ON WINDHAM FABRICS’ BLOG TO WIN FABRICS, not here…

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Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along: Part 8

NOTE:  If you are just now hearing about the Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along, and would like to find out more, click HERE.

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Hello Friends, I hope you have been well since our last Spring on Bleecker Street post (Part 7).

It’s so embarrassing to be late for your own party …. please apologize for the delay in posting the latest installment of our Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along!

But before I share about the new part added to the quilt, let’s enjoy what you have sent in!  And THANK YOU, and good job for keeping up!  And please don’t feel bad if you haven’t been able to devote as much time as you would like on the project.  I know I sure haven’t because of the happenings in my life recently.

This is mine from Part 7.

Billie of http://billiebeesblog.blogspot.com (I have “known” Billie for quite a few years.  I have affectionately called her the queen of BOM’s because she works out the coolest BOM projects. Stop by Billie’s blog and see all the amazing quilts she is making!

Gail’s 30’s version is looking really really sweet!!!

Alice’s blue version has such an amazing calming effect:

Good Job, EVERYONE!  Your quilts will all be absolutely GORGEOUS!!!

I am VERY happy that you are sewing along.  You can send me pictures of your quilt at anystage at any time, and I will just include your pictures in the next posting of Spring on Bleecker Street.

Remember, this is a sew-along for those of us who have more projects we can count, all going on at the same time, and still have a life to live. :-) So, absolutely no pressure to get things done on time. You can go as fast or as slow as life allows.  More importantly, I just want you to enjoy the project as I have.

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The next parts for me (embroidery and framing pieces for the swirly bird blocks) looked quick and easy for me, but by far, this has taken me the longest time!  So, if you are doing it my pace — be prepared.  But then, I am slow at everything.  So maybe that’s why it’s took me longer than I expected.

You can either add the framing pieces first, or the embroidery first before the framing pieces.  I actually embroidered first — because I had a window where I could do Mom duties and handwork at the same time.  I probably would have framed the blocks first — because I think that will keep the squares squared up more easily.  But doing the embroidery first didn’t seem to the affect the square-ness of my blocks because I have starch-pressed the blocks really well before hand.

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Embroidery: 2 hours per block (yikes!)

I have to admit — I am getting up there in age, ha!  When I do handwork these days, I use a pair of jeweler’s glasses to help.  I like to keep my stitches as consistent in length as possible.  The good thing about the glasses (though it makes me look like a total DORK!) is that I am able to see the weave of the fabric to gauge my stitch length.  My favorite is to have my stitches cover 2-3 weave lengths of the fabric.  If it’s 4-5 weave length, the stitches end up being a little too long for my taste.

When doing hand embroidery stitching, I always use 2-strands of embroidery floss!  I am using floss from my Marmalade Meadows floss I have curated for Aurifil!  I love the Aurifloss because like the rest of Aurifil’s threads, the floss has minimal lint — which makes my stitches really crisp! I am also not needing to condition my floss before stitching.  So I pretty much just thread and needle and take off!

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You can order these amazing embroidery floss through your local Aurifil dealers, or you may order them online from

#1.  Cinnamon’s Quilt Shoppe here.

#2.  You may contact www.followthatthread.com to order.

#3.  Pumpkinvine Corner (scroll down to the bottom of order page) here.

The floss box comes with a free pattern to make this little mini quilt with the stitchery design inspired by Miss Baby’s art work!  She really did come up with the original artwork which I adapted for stitchery.

You are first to know — Miss Baby and Marmalade (the pot belly bunny) are working up something for Christmas.  I hope to be able to get the project completed and share with you by the end of October in case you want to make the project in time for Christmas!

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Here are a couple of close-ups of stitchery on the swirly bird blocks.

And don’t feel like you have to followed exactly how many French knots to add to the tendrils.  I always get carried away when I do French knots, and I ended up adding more than the number of French knots shown in the diagram in the instructions.

Now onto the framing pieces:  another 2 hours!

The piecing is pretty much straightforward!  The only thought I will share is that it’s easier to make the pieced 1″ squares by fours!  Make units of 4-squares, and then sew them together.  That way, the 20-square unit won’t end up wonky!

It took some time, but the effect was so worth it.  The tiny squares gave the swirly bird blocks a cute jeweled look!

And that’s all for this time!  Remember to enjoy the journey!!!

It’s quite amazing to see the progress I have made the last few months — just for trying to keep up! I couldn’t have done it without being accountable to you!  THANK YOU for sewing-along, and thank you for ensuring that I am making progress, albeit be it snail-speed.  And you heard it first here — my next sew-along project planned for next year will be snail-ish!

Till next time!

De-stashing updates – and MORE!

Hello Friends, I hope you have been well.  I had to disappear for a bit the last couple of weeksto work on a few really immediate deadlines, including those that were sprung on me last minute!  The struggle is real, but life is full. I did have to take a break from my de-stashing effort, and focused entirely on my work for a bit.  The struggle is not over, but at least I get a few minutes to say hello to you!   I hope you’ve been well.

And here are a few pictures of my own stashes of fabrics I kept for myself…

1.  First up, I have some fabrics organized by colors — red, blue, green, gray, yellow etc.  Here is a picture of my red stash, and my other stashes organized by colors are about the same.  If you have received red fabrics from me in the mystery boxes of fabrics, you KNOW how many red fabrics I have given away.  HAHA!

2.  And I have a section dedicated to just dots — polka dots, dots, and just dots!  And you can also see I save my empty Aurfil spools as my “sewing trophies”. :)

3.  And then, I have my 30’s stash!  I am collecting a bunch of 30’s fabrics to make a reproduction quilt.

4.  I have a small stash of reproduction fabrics.  I am giving away the ones on the right.  Stay tune for details!

5.  And a small Christmas stash — again, if you have received my de-stashed fabrics, you KNOW I used to have a lot of Christmas fabrics. :) Keyword is… “used to”.

6.  And my whimsical and mostly Riley Blake stash…

7.  And my “sewing machines” – these are made by Cardew, a British pottery company.  I share my sewing room with Miss Baby – she has a desk in this already rather small room that was meant to be a main level office, and not a sewing room!  So, there’s always something from Miss Baby tucked in here and there… thus the stuffed cat.

Notice how small my pink and orange stashes are — aren’t you proud of me?

Also, I always set out thread spools that are nearly empty… so that I remember to use them before breaking into new spools.

8.  I do have a rather large stash of Lynette Anderson fabrics.  Lynette is a dear friend of mine in the industry.

9.  I often have my work-in-progress things in view just so that I don’t forget about them.  This is part of my bird applique block that I still have to add hand embroidery for the next installment of my Spring on Bleecker Street Sew Along.  Click here if you would like more information on the sewalong.

And here you see my Bleecker Street stash, with which I am using to make my Spring on Bleecker Street quilt!

10.  And here are just some random stashes…

I just emailed 10 quilters today who were next on my list to receive the fabrics.  My de-stashing project has been successful, and is coming to an end.  My fingers are crossed with hope that the fabrics do NOT multiply themselves!!!  So far I have the following available:

#1.  I still have my books available for sale – 2 for $25, and 1 for $15 (both include shipping)

#2.  20 magazines (many with my designs featured) available for $15 for me to ship in USPS Priority Medium box.  I will add fabrics as well to fill the box up.  I have just 1 box.  Email me at wendy2@wendysheppard.net asap if you are interested.

#3.  I have 2 USPS Priority Large boxes of scraps.  They aren’t the yardages that I have sent out in my de-stashing effort. They are usable pieces, some up to 1/8-1/4y for those of you who make scrappy quilts!  ONLY 2 boxes are available – email me at wendy2@wendysheppard.net asap if you are interested! NO LONGER AVAILABLE!

I have been really happy to hear that the destash fabrics you received have already been put to good use!  I have heard from many of you who are using the fabrics to make charity quilts, and to teach others how to quilt.  I have even received a nice little pouch from Danette when she sent in her check to cover the shipment of her box of fabrics.  All that to say…. QUILTERS ARE REALLY SWEET PEOPLE!  Let’s all do our part to keep that sweetness going, shall we?

Eclipse!

Hello Friends, a Happy Eclipse Monday to you all!  We were going to chase the Eclipse down in South Carolina, but we chickened out… so, I will be logging on to NASA’s website to watch instead.  An interesting side note:  some WWII era bombers are being employed to take footages of the eclipse.  I thought that was quite interesting.

In anticipation of this terrestrial event, I had designed this quilt using Anthology’s batik fabrics a few months ago. The fabrics will be delivered to stores in Fall 2017.  I will have more information on the pattern instructions then.  But for now…. here is my Phases quilt.

It’s such a neat event, isn’t it?  Through all the excitement, the verse in Psalm 113: 3 came to mind, “From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’S name is to be praised.”

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I haven’t forgotten about sharing pictures of my stash, and more de-stashing news.  I got caught in a whirlwind of some totally unplanned work and deadlines in the midst of my 100 star blocks craziness last week.  I hope to be able to send out emails to those who are on my waiting #3.  I will also have ONE Jinny Beyer BOM kit that I will be parting with – more on that later as well.

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Have a lovely rest of your week.  I shall catch up with you later.

Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along: Part 7

NOTE:  If you are just now hearing about the Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along, and would like to find out more, click HERE.

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Hello Friends, I hope you have been well since our last Spring on Bleecker Street post (Part 6).

But before I share about the new part added to the quilt, let’s enjoy what you have sent in!  And THANK YOU, and good job for keeping up!  And please don’t feel bad if you haven’t been able to devote as much time as you would like on the project.  I know I sure haven’t because of the happenings in my life recently.

This is mine from Part 6.

Billie of http://billiebeesblog.blogspot.com (I have “known” Billie for quite a few years.  I have affectionately called her the queen of BOM’s because she works out the coolest BOM projects. Stop by Billie’s blog and see all the amazing quilts she is making!

Alice’s block is really special to me.  You have read about my major de-stashing effort, and Alice asked to be sent a box of my mystery fabric box!  She ended up incorporated one of the fabrics I sent her in the birdhouse block.  What a sweet gesture.

Gail sent in her Parts 5 and 6 progress pictures.  I love the 30’s fabrics Gail has used, making her blocks take on a sweet and whimsical feel.

Good Job, EVERYONE!  Your quilts will all be absolutely GORGEOUS!!!

I am VERY happy that you are sewing along.  You can send me pictures of your quilt at anystage at any time, and I will just include your pictures in the next posting of Spring on Bleecker Street.

Remember, this is a sew-along for those of us who have more projects we can count, all going on at the same time, and still have a life to live. :-) So, absolutely no pressure to get things done on time. You can go as fast or as slow as life allows.  More importantly, I just want you to enjoy the project as I have.

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I have had another busy month.  Within the last two weeks and a half, I finalized almost 25 upcoming quilt designs. So I have been doing a lot of pattern writing.  I can’t wait to share with you these new designs — there are some really fun ones!

Back to Spring on Bleecker Street — I have only been able to do the applique on both the bird/swirl blocks this month.

There are a few things I thought I would share with you that might help your applique process go a bit smoother.

#1.  I use a lightbox for tracing and placement purposes.  I have this nifty LED lightbox that is really bright (you can get it at Hobby Lobby because that’s where I got mine).  So, the pattern sheet is place on the light box first, and then, the paper-backed fusible for tracing applique pattern pieces to prepare the fabric applique pieces.

Applicable specifically to this pattern, there is no full-sized placement guide included in this pattern, only a guide!  So, after you have prepared your fabric pieces, you will have to guess-timate and approximate where the pieces go.  That’s perfectly fine. I had no problems with that.

NOW — if you want both your blocks to be as close to perfectly mirror-imaged as possible, this is what you would do.  Work and finalize the placement of applique pieces on one block only.  Fuse the pieces in place.  Then, bring that block #1 (with applique pieces) to your light box (or a window if you don’t have one) — place the block RIGHT SIDE DOWN.

Then, place the background block of block #2 right side up, on top of the wrong side of block #1.  You will see where the pieces are placed on block #1, and then you can in turn place the applique pieces on the appropriate spots on block #2.

#2.  We all like to finish our applique pieces differently.  I like to finish my fusible applique pieces with buttonhole stitching.  So the following is applicable only to buttonhole stitching.  I like to use fine threads and small stitches for buttonhole stitching so that they do not dominate over the applique pieces.  In these pictures you see, I have used the newly released Aurifil Mako 80 wt!   The 80wt was developed for hand applique, but the spools are also machine friendly.  So you can actually use the 80wt for machine stitching as well.

I loved using 50wt for buttonhole stitching, and I am loving the 80wt for buttonhole stitching even more!  The picture below shows a close-up of my buttonhole stitches.

#3.  With buttonhole stitching, I always had problems with the direction-changing of the stitching paths where I have to pivot the stitches to be perpendicular to the edge of applique pieces, and more often than not, those pivoting stitches don’t come out looking good.  The other situation that frustrates me is that it’s hard to do buttonhole stitching around sharp points or narrow pieces…. so, over the years, I have come up with using a combination of buttonhole and outline stitching around my applique pieces — buttonhole stitching when the going is good, and then I switch to straight line stitching when the going gets tough (e.g. when I am getting close a pointy edge, or where the piece is just too narrow), and then, once I get through the rough spots, I switch back to buttonhole stitching again!  I like the resulting look much better that way.

You see how by switching to outline straight stitching, I didn’t have to deal with trying to pivot the buttonhole stitching just so…?  It’s much easier for me this way.

Here you see that the swirl on the bird is too narrow for me to really do buttonhole stitching.  So I just outline/straight stitched around it.

Now, I do have to warn you about the switch between stitches:  I always use my hand wheel (instead of my foot pedal) to control where my needle lands right at the edge of the applique piece. 

#4.  As mentioned before, I always press-starch my blocks REALLY good before I sew the applique pieces in place. That way, I don’t have to use a stabilizer on the bottom of the block, and I won’t have anything to peel off after the finishing stitches.

SO I am hoping these tips will help you navigate applique-ing small pieces, and my swirls relatively easily!  If you know me, you know that swirls pop up quite often in my applique designs. :)

Once you are finished with the applique, and are ready to move to the stitchery part, use the following as a guide to mark the embroidery.

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As you know, I didn’t quite get my act together, so I will be using the next few weeks to add the stitchery to my bird/swirl blocks, as well as the birdhouse block.  I will be using my Marmalade Meadows colors…. I love these colors, if I do say so myself. :)

Have you tried stitching with Aurifloss?  If you haven’t, you have to!  One thing that struck me when I first tried it was that my stitches looked much more defined and crisp.  Then, through communicating with Alex Veronelli, he told me the floss is manufactured the same way as the other cotton threads in that an extra step is added to the manufacturing process to reduce the lint!  I know what that step is — but you will have to find out what it is at Alex’s thread lecture.  If you haven’t been to the thread lectures, you have to!!!  

Anyway, you can order these amazing embroidery floss through your local Aurifil dealers, or you may order them online from

#1.  Cinnamon’s Quilt Shoppe here.

#2.  You may contact www.followthatthread.com to order.

#3.  Pumpkinvine Corner (scroll down to the bottom of order page) here.

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Well, I have my work cut out for me with the stitching this month!  And meanwhile, I have this daunting quilt I am supposed to make for a magazine with about 80 star blocks.  I have to get the quilt top completed in about 5-7 days.  So…. I’d better get going and get star-block-making!!  Till next time, Dear Friends — and Happy Sewing!

More Giveaway (Destash) News — Happy Monday, and Hello — my name is…

… Wendy Sheppard, the rather accidental quilter!  I want to welcome my new followers following me in the last few months!  I hope you have enjoyed your visits to my blog.  Since there have been quite a few Ivory Spring friends of late, I thought I would take a moment to share a few things about myself.

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#1.  I didn’t start off thinking, wanting or imagining to be a quilter.  You can read about my quilting journey here, and why I quilt here.

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#2.  I am passionate about domestic machine quilting, but I have also learned this year to enjoy piecing!  More about that in an upcoming post!  I currently have 5 Annie’s different online /video machine quilting classes – check out the sidebar for more information on each of the machine quilting classes.

#3.  I am more a thread-aholic than I am a fabric-aholic!  I am definitely a dish-aholic!

My thread-aholism has landed me in a couple of “mug shots”…

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#4.  At any given day, I would rather rip out ALL the seams of a completed quilt top than clean and shine my glass top stove!

#5.  I like to design quilts that ONLY look complicated, but are really easy to put together. :)

#6.  And right now, I am in the process of doing a major de-stashing project.  I am in the process of giving away 80% of my fabric stash.  Come back later this week and I will show you pictures of the fabrics I did keep for myself.  I just sent out an email to those who made it to my Waiting List #2, and I will be sending out another email soon for those who made it to Waiting List #3.  I think my fabric stash is mysteriously multiplying!

#7.  My favorite cookies are oatmeal raisins!  I can’t be left alone with them.

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Meanwhile, the following photo shows copies of quilting publications that have published my work.

 

Duplicate copies of magazines have accumulated over the years.  I am giving away these duplicate magazine issues.  I can fit 3-4 (depending on the magazines) in a USPS Priority Envelope for $9. [If you have received my fabric boxes, you will know I don’t skim, hehe!]  I have enough to send to 20 of you if you are interested.  Please email me at wendy2@wendysheppard.net and write “Magazine De-Stash” in the subject line!  Please note that I can only guarantee you will have at least ONE magazine issue that will have my design in it.  

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And lastly, I am happy to announce Marty won the Adventures in Hexagons book giveaway!  Congrats, Marty.  I have emailed to ask for your mailing address.  Please respond, and I will pass on the info to get the book mailed out to you. :)  I ran out of time getting my hexagon project completed due to some very intense and unexpected workload.  So my part is forthcoming!  Meanwhile, I hope you will pick up at copy of my friend Emily’s book!

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Thanks for stopping by… and have a lovely rest of your week!

Giveaway — Quilting Treasures Zola Fabrics to make an entire quilt!

Happy Monday, and I hope your week got off with a rousing start.  This is too good to not share!  I had shared with you this free-to-use pattern featuring the Zola fabrics from Quilting Treasures.  I am excited to hear that the fabrics are quickly becoming many’s favorite!!  Quilting Treasures is generously giving away fabrics to make this quilt!!! Click here to enter the giveaway.  I am turning off comments here so that you don’t accidentally leave your comment here and miss the chance on winning. :)

Click here to view the fabric group.  Be sure to check out the adorable snail prints!

Click here to download free to use quilt pattern.

Well, that’s it for now… Friends!  I hope you have a lovely rest of your week.  We have about two weeks before school starts, and still have lots to do before we are ready for school!  Yikes!

Adventures in Hexagons Blog Hop & Giveaway!

Quick announcement before I get into today’s post re: de-stashing!  I have started contacting those who made it to the waiting list in the order of when your email came in.  I will be contacting more of you as I manage to pack more boxes.  To date, I think I have shipped off 25-30 boxes!  If you haven’t heard from me and are on the waiting list, that because there are others in front of you in the queue! I will share more about my de-stashing project next week.

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Happy Saturday, Friends! I am happy to be part of the celebration featuring Emily Breclaw’s new book “Adventures in Hexagons”, published by CT Publishing. Emily is a very talented quilter, and you may learn more about her and her work at http://thecaffeinatedquilter.com/.  Emily and I definitely share our choice of coffee as our “stay awake juice” (coined by Miss baby).

I have always been fascinated by the hexagonal and octagonal quilts, and have secretly saved in my archive pictures of tile floors with the the notion that I will bring the designs to life one day with fabrics.  Meeting Emily for the first time at Houston Quilt Market has piqued my interest even more….

I like the way Emily presents her instructions in the book for either machine piecing or hand piecing her quilts!  It might sound weird, but as much as I use the machine for my quilts, I am tending toward handpiecing when making these fun hexagonal quilts!  AND…. the best part of the book for me is the pictures!  Emily’s quilt are truly awe-inspiring!  Here are a couple of my favorites!

There are many more eye candies included in the book – I hope you will pick up at copy of Emily’s book!  Meanwhile, CT Publishing is generously giving away a copy of Emily’s book!  Leave a comment here between now and next Saturday (August 12th, 2017), and tell me if you have ever made a hexagon quilt or hand-pieced quilt!  I will pick a winner and announce it on the following Monday, and show you my version and first ever Hexagon quilt!

Have a lovely rest of your weekend! Hugs to you all!

Cinnamon Swirl in QUILTS & MORE (Fall 2017) & More…

Hello Friends, I hope you are well!  I am noticing it’s a bit chillier in the mornings these days, which means summer is quickly fleeting away — giving rise to everything good that is associated to cinnamon!  Though I am a winter wimp, one thing I do like about the colder weather is that cinnamon gets to shine in all the bake goods etc.

I am so happy my quilt Cinnamon Swirl is being featured in the Fall 2017 issue of Quilts and More!

Used with permission from Quilts and More magazine. ©2017 Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved.

 

Cinnamon Swirl uses Autumn Air fabrics from RJR Fabrics.  These fabrics are absolutely gorgeous.  Take a look at the fabrics in the group here.  You know I almost never design anything too complicated to make…. the blocks are basically 9-patch blocks, elongated and sashed within the blocks!  The pinwheels sashing blocks add to the visual effect, and the overall layout gives an Argyle impression.  The construction went really fast even for a “snail-paced” piecer like myself. :)

Used with permission from Quilts and More magazine. ©2017 Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved.

So… curious mind wants to know if you are excited about fall/autumn…. TELL ME!

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I am also happy to announce the winner of my Sparkle FQ Bundle Giveaway.  I had used the fabrics to make a Christmas pillow a couple of Saturdays ago.  Congrats to Janie — I have emailed you separately, if you could email me your shipping address, I will get the FQ bundle out to you!

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And a quick update on “Help Me De-Stash” project…. THANK YOU ALL for the very overwhelming responses!  I have almost shipped out my first 20 boxes!  The upside of that is I am finally able to see the floor of my family room. I will work on the boxes on my first waiting list.  I had hoped to write those on the first waiting list yesterday, but that didn’t happen.  I am running late this week — Miss Baby’s camp and other work-related deadlines.  But please don’t give up on me.  I hope to write those who made it to the waiting list by this weekend!

My de-stashing effort has been a good one.  Even with the fabrics I am keeping, Miss Baby walked into my sewing room a few nights ago, and commented, “Mom, seriously, who is going to use up all these fabrics?” — she did a sweeping motion with her hands!  I have officially nominated her to be my “conscience” for all things sewing!

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Thanks for stopping by, Friends!  I hope you have a lovely rest of your day!  I need to get going — I have pattern writing to do for more than 10 patterns!  Yikes!!!

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My 2017 Line-up

 

Editorial Feature

American Patchwork & Quilting (Jan/Feb 2017):  Close Quarters (Cover Quilt)

American Patchwork & Quilting Calendar (July 2017):  Summer Sparkler

Australian Patchwork & Quilting (Volume 27, Number 4): Wildwood Way

Fons & Porter Easy Quilts (Summer 2017): Pound of Sugar (Cover Quilt)

Fons & Porter Easy Quilts (Summer 2017): Cozy Castles

McCall’s Quilting (May/June 2017): Village Square (Cover Quilt)

McCall’s Quilting (May/June 2017): County Fair

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2017): Summer in Quebec

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2017): Santa’s Tree Farm

McCall’s Quick Quilts (Feb/March 2017):  I’m Blue For You

McCall’s Quick Quilts (April/May 2017): Stamp Pad

Quiltmaker (May/June 2017): Highland Roses

Quiltmaker (July/August 2017):  Santa’s Crossing

Quilts and More (Fall 2017):  Cinnamon Swirl

 

Free-to-use Design

Jan 2017:  Stars and Stripes Forever (Hoffman Fabrics)

Jan 2017:  HOPE (Windham Fabrics)

Jan 2017:  Bleecker Street (Quilting Treasures)

Feb 2017: Sheeps and Peeps (Quilting Treasures)

Feb 2017: Smarty Cats (Windham Fabrics)

Feb 2017: Wildwood Way (RJR Fabrics)

March 2017: Hamilton (Windham Fabrics)

April 2017: Vines (Windham Fabrics)

April 2017: Storybook Flannel (Windham Fabrics)

April 2017: Monroe (Quilting Treasures)

May 2017:  Not Your Garden Variety (Quilting Treasures)

May 2017: Love My Hero (Quilting Treasures)

June 2017:  Flag Banner (Windham Fabrics)

July 2017: Zola (Ink & Arrow)

HAPPENINGS & FREE PATTERN: Ink & Arrow’s Zola

Happy Friday, Friends!  I hope you have been well!  My summer has gone by like a chaotic blob of blur, but my little family is doing well and keeping busy with life!  Miss Baby went to have a visit with Mrs. George Washington a couple of weeks ago at Mount Vernon for a special doll event!  You can see Mrs. Washington in the picture sharing about her childhood, and her eventual life with the great General.  You should have seen her reminiscing on how good General  (then Colonel) Washington looked in his blue velvet wedding suit!  I told my husband later that General Washington was even ahead of Elvis in the sartorial trend!

The girl in purple and the purple straw hat is mine — she was enchanted with Mrs. Washington’s stories. [Side note: that golden gown you see on the left is Mrs. Washington’s wedding dress she wore to marry Colonel Washington.]

Miss Baby is also enjoying tending to her herbs and flowers this summer, as well as working on her stitching!  She is finally onto the last row of her Maisons des ABC sampler!!!

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Many of you have emailed to ask about purchasing the pattern for a quilt design you have seen in the latest issue of Modern Patchwork Magazine!  You are in luck…. the pattern is a free-to-use pattern I designed to feature Ink & Arrow’s Zola fabric group!

Click here to view the fabric group.  Be sure to check out the adorable snail prints!

Click here to download free to use quilt pattern.

Well, that’s it for now… Friends!  Be sure to come check back on Monday if you are up for some free fabrics.  As you know I have been outfitting my sewing room, and I have a stash problem, a HUGE ONE!  Anyway, information forthcoming on Monday!

Hugs to you all, and have a great weekend!!

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My 2017 Line-up

 

Editorial Feature

American Patchwork & Quilting (Jan/Feb 2017):  Close Quarters (Cover Quilt)

American Patchwork & Quilting Calendar (July 2017):  Summer Sparkler

Australian Patchwork & Quilting (Volume 27, Number 4): Wildwood Way

Fons & Porter Easy Quilts (Summer 2017): Pound of Sugar (Cover Quilt)

Fons & Porter Easy Quilts (Summer 2017): Cozy Castles

McCall’s Quilting (May/June 2017): Village Square (Cover Quilt)

McCall’s Quilting (May/June 2017): County Fair

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2017): Summer in Quebec

McCall’s Quilting (July/August 2017): Santa’s Tree Farm

McCall’s Quick Quilts (Feb/March 2017):  I’m Blue For You

McCall’s Quick Quilts (April/May 2017): Stamp Pad

Quiltmaker (May/June 2017): Highland Roses

Quiltmaker (July/August 2017):  Santa’s Crossing

 

Free-to-use Design

Jan 2017:  Stars and Stripes Forever (Hoffman Fabrics)

Jan 2017:  HOPE (Windham Fabrics)

Jan 2017:  Bleecker Street (Quilting Treasures)

Feb 2017: Sheeps and Peeps (Quilting Treasures)

Feb 2017: Smarty Cats (Windham Fabrics)

Feb 2017: Wildwood Way (RJR Fabrics)

March 2017: Hamilton (Windham Fabrics)

April 2017: Vines (Windham Fabrics)

April 2017: Storybook Flannel (Windham Fabrics)

April 2017: Monroe (Quilting Treasures)

May 2017:  Not Your Garden Variety (Quilting Treasures)

May 2017: Love My Hero (Quilting Treasures)

June 2017:  Flag Banner (Windham Fabrics)

July 2017: Zola (Ink & Arrow)

Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along: Part 6

NOTE:  If you are just now hearing about the Spring on Bleecker Street Sew-Along, and would like to find out more, click HERE.

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Hello Friends, I hope you have been well since our last Spring on Bleecker Street post (Part 5).

But before I share about the new part added to the quilt, let’s enjoy what you have sent in!  And THANK YOU!!!!

This is mine, made using Bleecker Street fabrics by Quilting Treasures.

Billie of http://billiebeesblog.blogspot.com (I have “known” Billie for quite a few years.  I have affectionately called her the queen of BOM’s because she works out the coolest BOM projects. Stop by Billie’s blog and see all the amazing quilts she is making!  Seeing her projects always makes me want to retire!

Alice sent in her progress picture as well, despite having had a busy month!  Good job, Alice!  I am loving the calming effect of the blues Alice has used in her blocks!

And here is Kim’s batik version — so happy to see this done in batiks because the batiks give such a sense of depth to any designs.  And you can see that Kim has been VERY busy!!! I love seeing all the blocks that I have yet to make, and I am feeling really motivated!!

Good Job, EVERYONE!  Your quilts will all be absolutely GORGEOUS!!!

I am VERY happy that you are sewing along.  You can send me pictures of your quilt at anystage at any time, and I will just include your pictures in the next posting of Spring on Bleecker Street.

Remember, this is a sew-along for those of us who have more projects we can count, all going on at the same time, and still have a life to live. :-) So, absolutely no pressure to get things done on time. You can go as fast or as slow as life allows.  More importantly, I just want you to enjoy the project as I have.

Life took on a crazy pace for me, and before I knew it… another part of the Sew Along is due, ha!  I want to thank all my Sew Along friends for keeping me accountable on this.  I can tell you if you weren’t sewing with me, I wouldn’t have done as much on the quilt as I have.  I have had an under-the-weather Miss Baby for part of this part week, and add to that a rather traumatic experience of being locked out of our house because I was out just for a jiffy getting leaves for our new wooly bear pet!  It was good to finally settle in to get a bit of leisure sewing done.

For Part 6, I am making the birdhouse block – only the pieced portion because I am a bit unorganized currently with my sewing notions as I continue to outfit my sewing room!

Since this block will have some tiny pieces, so I made sure I press-starched my fabrics before I cut them.  The rest is actually quite straightforward with a few things to note:

#1.  When making the flying geese unit, I pressed the seams open so that I made sure I “hit” the point just right when I added the white tonal strip above the flying geese unit in finishing out the block.  Below is a blown-up image of where the point of the flying geese unit meets the white tonal rectangle at the top.

#2.  When I trimmed off the dog ears when making the flying geese units.  I went ahead and cut into the dog ears into triangles to make HST units to make the pinwheel units for the outer border.  With the dog ears, you can cut 4 sets of triangles enough to make HST units for 1 pinwheel unit.

#3.  When making the pieced leaves and stem unit, I pressed the seams to one side when making the pieced row units, but press the seams open when sewing the rows together.  The main reason is that with 1″ finished width, I didn’t want to lose any real estate from pressing the seams to one side.

And here is how my birdhouse block is looking.

I shall be back next month with the applique butterfly and stitchery added to the birdhouse blocks, as well as the swirl and bird applique blocks!

Use the image below as a guide for applique and stitchery if you decide to go ahead and finish the block.

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Happy Sewing-Along, Friends – keep making those pinwheel units!!

Happy Independence Day 2017!

Hello Friends, I hope you have been well!  I want to stop in really quickly to wish you a very blessed 241st Independence Day – continual prayers and blessings to a great country!

I would like to know what America means to you on this special day!

My country, ’tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty,
Of thee I sing;
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the pilgrims’ pride,
From ev’ry mountainside
Let freedom ring!
My native country, thee,
Land of the noble free,
Thy name I love;
I love thy rocks and rills,
Thy woods and templed hills;
My heart with rapture thrills,
Like that above.
Let music swell the breeze,
And ring from all the trees
Sweet freedom’s song;
Let mortal tongues awake;
Let all that breathe partake;
Let rocks their silence break,
The sound prolong.
Our fathers’ God to Thee,
Author of liberty,
To Thee we sing.
Long may our land be bright,
With freedom’s holy light,
Protect us by Thy might,
Great God our King.

by Samuel Francis Smith (1831)

Additional verse to celebrate Washington’s Centennial:

Our joyful hearts today,
Their grateful tribute pay,
Happy and free,
After our toils and fears,
After our blood and tears,
Strong with our hundred years,
O God, to Thee.

I hope you have a lovely rest of your day, Dear Friends – Stars and Stripes over Columbia, forever!

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If you are curious about the quilt I posted earlier – it’s Summer Sparkler, featured in American Patchwork & Quilting’s 2017 Calendar for the month of July.  It is a completed scrappy quilt with about 50 fabrics from different manufacturers – RJR Fabrics, Art Gallery Fabrics, Moda, Windham and Benartex.