Happy Birthday, General Washington!

And that should be a great start for a new week for all of us, eh?

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Those who know me also know that I have a fondness for history, especially the Colonial American history.  Because of that, I never tire of learning about the beloved General’s life.   If we don’t know our history, we won’t know where we are headed.  My belief remains steadfast… generations – ours and upcoming – need to learn real and unbiased history, and the General’s life is a great place to start.

Click here to see how well you know about General Washington quiz.  I scored 93% — so obviously I have more learning to do!

Click here to read some interesting facts on General Washington.

Click here to read about the day set aside to remember the General’s birthday.

Click hereherehere, and here to read about past Washington’s birthday posts on Ivory Spring.

And legend has it Lady Washington had a Japanese Fruit Pie (a staple at the Ivory Spring household) made for the General for one of his birthday.   Click here for the recipe.

Over the years, I have thought about words I would use to describe General Washington.  This year, my words to describe him are understated elegant.  I have been reading up on the General’s life as a designer and architect, and his pursuits of things artistic this past year, and one thing I came away with was that General Washington was a man of details.  His keen interest in details reflect him as a complex man, with lots of depth, but never ostentatious nor tacky — just elegant!

What one word or words would would you use to describe the General in honor of the day set aside to remember his birthday?

Thanks for stopping by!  I hope you have a lovely week ahead.  Those who are stuck in the deep freeze (like me!), do stay warm and safe.

Making Valentines in McCALL’S QUILTING (March/April 2015) & Giveaway!

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Hello Friends, you know how excited I was when my first feature in McCall’s Quilting happened! I thought I had arrived when I saw with my own eyes Spiral Squared in the magazine spread.

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I am so excited I have another feature in McCall’s Quilting this year… meet Making Valentines.

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Making Valentines consists of easily constructed heart blocks, colored differently by different fabrics.  When I make Valentines with Miss Baby, I tend to make variations of the same style after making 5 of the same Valentines.   It just makes making Valentine that much more fun.

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Thus, the differently colored heart blocks in Making Valentines.

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I used Lynette Anderson’s Hearts and Flowers fabrics (released by RJR Fabrics) for a slightly different take on the usual Valentine’s Day colors — slightly muted and darker red paired with beige, gray and taupe.  I used white to offset the gray to give the overall design a Scandinavian feel.  Limited number of kits are available here.

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The simplicity of the 9-patch sashing blocks add whimsical touches to the quilt.  Notice my blocks aren’t wonky — that’s because I have a little trick when piecing small squares.  Click here for my little trick to chase away the wonkiness.

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I quilted allover Jester’s Hat on the quilt – using Aurifil Mako 50 Cotton over Hobbs Tuscany Silk batting.  You can read about my Jester’s Hat motif herehere, and here.

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I hope you have liked seeing (and even making) Making Valentines.

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Now about the Giveaway… McCall’s is having a giveaway of my Recreating Antique Quilts book on their blog.  Read about my book here Click here for more information on the giveaway, and what others thought of Making Valentines.  My heart had gone afluttering reading about some of the sweet comments on my quilt.  Hurry to enter the giveaway – the deadline is Feb 14th.

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And a big(!) thank you to McCall’s Quilting for sending me 2 magazine copies to give away to Ivory Spring readers.  Just leave a comment and tell me what you think of my Making Valentines quilt to enter the giveaway.  Winner will be announced on February 20th.

Thank you for stopping – and I do hope you have a sweet Valentine’s Day weekend!

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My 2015 Line-up

Editorial Features:

American Patchwork & Quilting 2015 Calendar: Get Happy

American Patchwork & Quilting 2015 Calendar: Migration

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2015): Sunny Delight

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2015): Family Dinner

Fons & Porter’s Scrap Quilts (Spring 2015): Stars are Brightly Shining

McCall’s Quilting (March/April 2015): Making Valentines

Quilter’s World (Spring 2015): Zigs and Zags

Quilts and More (Spring 2015): Exclamation Point

 

Free-to-use Designs:

January: A Red Letter Day using Seeing Red (Benartex)

January: Star Struck using Caryl’s Feathers (Benartex)

February: Happy Home House Quilt (Quilting Treasures)

February: Happy Home Runner (Quilting Treasures)

February: Happy Home Throw Quilt (Quilting Treasures)

Family Dinner in Fons and Porter’s LOVE OF QUILTING (January/February 2015)

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Hello Friends – I hope you are well.  I have been working – well, no surprise there.  But in case you haven’t heard much from me, I want you to know it’s not because I don’t like you.  It’s just that I have been working.

I am happy to share with you today my Family Dinner  table runner that is featured in Fons and Porter‘s Love of Quilting January/February 2015 issue.  I am always excited to be featured in any of the Fons and Porter’s publications.

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Family Dinner uses fabrics from Quilting Treasures’ Hot Little Dish.  You may purchase the runner kit here.  I like that the fabrics are non-seasonal, rendering the runner non-seasonal as well.  What really appeals to me about the fabrics is that they exude hospitality that just speaks of fellowship and meaningful conversations.

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Click here to view the entire fabric range.  Don’t you just love that quilt backing “ombre flatware” print fabric?

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I quilted allover large feathers on the quilt.  Quilting feathers is always therapeutic for me, mainly because I quilt with quality thread (Aurifil Mako 50 cotton) over quality batting (Hobbs Tuscany Silk batting).  With Aurifil threads, my stitches always come out looking right, and with Hobbs batting, my quilts end up looking well quilted.

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I decided that it was worthwhile to quilt allover feathers on this runner because the fabrics aren’t so bright and busy that the prints would swallow up the feathering effects.  Instead, the resulted effect is a nice overall texture for the runner, especially when the light hits the runner just right.

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You may also recall the table ensemble patterns I designed for Quilting Treasures late last year. Click here for more information on the patterns.

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I hope you have enjoyed seeing the options you can have with this really fun group of fabrics.

Thank you for stopping by!  Hugs to you all.  Till next time!

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My 2015 Line-up

Editorial Features:

American Patchwork & Quilting 2015 Calendar: Get Happy

American Patchwork & Quilting 2015 Calendar: Migration

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2015): Sunny Delight

Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting (January/February 2015): Family Dinner

Fons & Porter’s Scrap Quilts (Spring 2015): Stars are Brightly Shining

McCall’s Quilting (March/April 2015): Making Valentines

Quilter’s World (Spring 2015): Zigs and Zags

Quilts and More (Spring 2015): Exclamation Point

 

Free-to-use Designs:

January: A Red Letter Day using Seeing Red (Benartex)

January: Star Struck using Caryl’s Feathers (Benartex)

February: Happy Home House Quilt (Quilting Treasures)

February: Happy Home Runner (Quilting Treasures)

February: Happy Home Throw Quilt (Quilting Treasures)

My design, your quilt: Movement in Squares

Hello Friends, I hope you are well!  It’s another busy week at Ivory Spring with lots of designing, class proposals etc…. but I am slowly getting there.  At least I think I am over with the yucky flu!

Christine sent her version of my Movement in Squares quilt.   Click on quilt name to download the pattern instructions.

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Christine is entering her quilt in a show — thanks for sharing your quilt with us, Christine, and all the best to your quilt at the show!

Thanks for stopping by!  I will have a couple of magazine projects to share with you before the week is over.  Stay tuned, and stay warm for my northern Hemisphere friends!

FREE PATTERNS and more: Happy Home

Hello Friends, I hope you are well.  Take a look at these fabrics — they are from Quilting Treasures’ new line Happy Home - designed by Christine Graf.

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The Happy Home fabrics remind me of a hymn I used to sing at church growing up… I haven’t heard that sung at church ever since I came to the States.  I miss singing it.

Happy the home when God is there,
and love fills every breast;
when one their wish, and one their prayer,
and one their heavenly rest.

Happy the home where Jesus’ name
is sweet to every ear;
where children early speak his fame,
and parents hold him dear.

Happy the home where prayer is heard,
and praise is wont to rise;
where parents love the sacred Word
and all its wisdom prize.

Lord, let us in our homes agree
this blessed peace to gain;
unite our hearts in love to thee,
and love to all will reign.

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And I am using the fabrics (really loving them!) to make this quilt – the pattern is a free to use design offered by Quilting Treasures to feature their newly release Happy Home fabrics!

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I also designed a table runner with the fabrics.

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And a simple throw quilt as well.

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Click here to view the entire fabric range.

Click here to download pattern instructions for House quilt.

Click here to download pattern instructions for runner.

Click here to download pattern instructions for throw quilt.

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And I completed a TOTALLY different looking quilt using some of the fabrics.

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I hope you will have a lot of fun with Christine Graf’s new line Happy Home.  I, for one, am never tired of designing with Christine’s fabrics!

Thank you for stopping by.  I hope you have a stupendous week!

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

January: A Red Letter Day using Seeing Red (Benartex)

January: Star Struck using Caryl’s Feathers (Benartex)

February: Happy Home House Quilt (Quilting Treasures)

February: Happy Home Runner (Quilting Treasures)

February: Happy Home Throw Quilt (Quilting Treasures)

Malady, Mistakes, Momentary Setback, Motivation!

Hello Friends, I have been working with these fabrics, and they are entirely related to my drama earlier this week, though not responsible.  am to be blamed.

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Malady — Over the weekend, I had a relapse of my flu I had a few weeks ago.  So I was back to the head pressure, Muscle aches etc.  You get the idea.  But then since I had looming deadlines, and the fact that I wasn’t flat on my back… I kept going.

MistakesMonday Morning, I was feeling pretty good about my quilt top because all I had left was 5-6 blocks, and I would be able to get the quilt done within the next 12 hours or so…. until I noticed 24 of the completed blocks had to be redone due to glaring Mistakes!!!  What a Mess!  Don’t get me wrong — the construction had been so Much fun!  The quilt is a fun quilt, I promise!!!

[Are you seeing all my M words yet?! HA.]

Momentary setback — I had planned to have the quilt completed and shipped yesterday!  The thought of having to take out stitches and redoing all 24 blocks sent me straight to the depths of the Mires of Melancholy. There was quite a bit of feeling sorry going around in our house that day. My husband felt sorry for me.  Miss Baby felt sorry for me.  I felt sorry for me.

Motivation — An editorial assignment is something to be Made happen – and that is the Motivation I needed to keep going on!  So, Many hours later (the un-stitching and re-stitching took the longest), and Motivational speeches directed to myself, I have a sneak preview for you!

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I have to say that I am thankful for the editorial assignments in my life – because they Make sure I complete My quilts!  And that brings up to My next series of questions…

#1.  What you would have done if the quilt wasn’t for work, per se… would you just set the quilt aside for a while and work on something else and then come back to face the Music?

#2.  What tactics you have employed to help you get past Multiples Mistakes you spot on a quilt top — do you just leave them as they are, or do you embark on an un-stitching crusade?

#3.  If you are the type that sets aside the quilt, what do you do to get yourself back to the project?

Thanks for stopping by – please note the humorous undertone of this post!  I am not about to jump off a cliff (though the thought Might have flashed through My Mind for a Millisecond). Hugs to you all.  Till next time!

Guest blogging at McCall’s Quilting’s blog today!

Hello Friends, I am guest blogging at McCall’s Quilitng’s blog today — sharing about my Making Valentines quilt that is featured in the latest McCall’s Quilting issue!  Don’t forget to check out the exclusive kits available for this quilt here.

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Click here to go to McCall’s Quilting blog, and there is a giveaway of my book Recreating Antique Quilts there as well!  Would you mind spreading the word for me?

I had a rather dramatic start to my week – more about that tomorrow!  Have a lovely rest of the day. Hugs to you all.

Winter Blues: Sneak Peeks

Friends, it’s one thing when the weather is bitterly cold, but it’s totally different when a wind advisory is added to the bitter cold!  We had the cold and wind today.

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Here are a couple of sneak peeks of my Winter Blues quilt:

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I shall close out today’s post with just a few more visions of blues – my kind of blues! :)

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And here is a quilt named China Blue I made for Quilt Magazine in 2012.  Click here to read more about the quilt.

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Thanks so much for stopping by!  Have yourself a lovely weekend, won’t you?  Hugs to you all — I shall catch up with you next week!

Recreating Antique Quilts Project Highlight #1: Re-interpreting a DAR Baltimore Quilt

Hello Friends, I hope you are well!  I have been working hard to resist the temptation to just dig a hole in the ground and hibernate until the weather gets a little warmer.  It’s been bitterly cold where I am.  I think I am just a wimp when it comes to weather.

One of my Recreating Antique Quilts projects that has been warmly received is Ivory Baltimore.

My quilty inspirations of this little 17″ x 21″ banner consist traditional French red/white monochromatic needlework sampler and the Quaker medallion sampler.  You would often see stitchery of red on cream or white in French monochromatic samplers, such as the one I had stitched years ago.

So in the case of Ivory Baltimore, I reversed the colors, and have my cream applique shapes stitched onto a red and coral background.  The applique is adapted from a DAR Baltimore Album quilt. A picture of the original quilt is included in the book.

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Drawing from antique Quaker samplers, where sometimes only the “half” motifs were stitched on the outside perimeter of the samplers, I took one of the blocks in the original DAR and only appliqued half of the block on the left side of the banner.  (I so need to get this sampler completed!)

Thus the “half” Baltimore album block in Ivory Baltimore.

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I used Aurifil Mako 50 cotton thread for everything – piecing, buttonhole stitching around the applique shapes, and quilting (of course!).  I cannot stress enough how much I love using Aurifil threads – my machine loves it, I love it, and my finished projects love it!  The batting I used is Hobbs Tuscany Wool batting because I really wanted my feathers to show around the applique shapes.  Of course, I quilt 99.99% of my quilts with batting made by Hobbs because much is considered before they bring something to the market.

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Of course, I will be working with some ladies in making Ivory Baltimore in Rogers, Arkansas. Click here for contact information to see if spots are still available for the class.  One thing I can tell you is that Dan and Rhonda and I are working hard to get things all ready for a really fun time in April with the participants!  Click here if you haven’t read about how Dan bailed me out from trouble two weeks ago.  Anyway, since my public appearances are very limited due to my family obligations, I do hope to see some of you at the event!

Ivory Baltimore is a versatile project.  I would love to see you recreate antique quilts your way!

1.  You can easily just take the urn block and repeat it for 9 blocks for a nice sized wall hanging. How about alternative the color scheme for the blocks – cream applique on red background fabric, and red applique on cream background fabric.

2.  You can just as easily mirror image the half block to make it a whole block and use just that for another banner.

3.  How about using other colors… cream on gray background, orange on a black background, cream on mocha background!

4.  How about repeat the urn block three or four times horizontally for a table runner project?

5.  Now, the templates in the book are printed at 100% to reflect the final size of the book project. But you can easily enlarge the urn block and use that to make pillow shams to dress up your bed!

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Thank you for stopping by!  Tell me what your thoughts are regarding Ivory Baltimore. Meanwhile, you can read all about the book here.  It’s time for me to crawl back in bed go back to work. Tootles for now.

FREE PATTERN: Star Struck

Hello Friends, it’s lovely to have you visit again!  I am happy to share with you another free-to-use pattern I designed for Benartex using their Caryl’s Feathers fabric line.

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Come meet Star Struck:

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I always love the sawtooth star blocks – and am always looking for ways to incorporate them in neat ways in my designs.

Click here to view Caryls’ Feathers fabric range.

Click here to download the pattern instructions for Star Struck.

Incidentally, I have an editorial feature in the latest Quilter’s World magazine using the same fabrics.  Stay tuned for details.  Alrightie, my dear friends, I am going to have a very stressful next 7 days in trying to meet a few deadlines.  So, you might not hear from me much!  But please know that I appreciate you and your friendship!  Hugs to you all.

So tell me what you think about the Caryl’s Feathers fabrics – UP or DOWN?

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

January: A Red Letter Day using Seeing Red (Benartex)

January: Star Struck using Caryl’s Feathers (Benartex)

Project Sneak Peek & Fabric Preview & Giveaways

Happy Monday, Dear Friends!  I hope you are doing well, and your week has gotten with a great start!  Since showing you the precut bundles featuring Pat Sloan’s The Sweet Life fabrics, I have completed this sweet project.  More details to come.

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IMG_9205I have been playing with these blue precuts from Island Batik!  So tell me, are you one who would make a blue/white quilt?

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Meanwhile,  there is still time to enter the following giveaways:

1.  Benartex Leap Frog FQ bundle, offered on Sew in Love {with fabric}’s Novelty Prints blog hop.  I shared a tutorial for a quick pillow caddy project.  Click here to find out more.

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2.  QuiltShopGal is offering a giveaway of a copy of Fons and Porter’s Table Toppers book here. You see, the cover table topper is designed and made by yours truly.  You can read more about it here.

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Thanks so much for stopping by!  I shall catch up with you tomorrow!

Sew in Love {with Fabric} Blog Hop: Novelty Prints

Happy Friday, Friends!  I hope you are well.  My week just flew by this week, and we are looking into a snowy weekend according to the weather forecast.  I am happy to be participating in Sew in Love {with Fabric}’s Novelty Prints blog hop this week:

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By now you are familiar with Benartex’s Leap Frog fabric line…

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… because I have shared about the free to use pattern (In The Pond) here,

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For the hop project, I am sharing a quick pillow storage project to store things for Miss Baby.

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Head on over to Sew in Love {with Fabric} for the tutorial and for leaving comments.  Be sure you check out the other fun projects in the hop as well.  I am turning off comments for this post.

Thanks for stopping by!  I hope you have a blessed weekend.  I was gone earlier this week — so, it will be a working weekend for me.  Take care, my dear friends!

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Click the following links for my past blog hop participations at Sew in Love {with Fabric}:

Flower Favorites

Going Places

Christmas in July 2013

April Hop

Christmas in July 2014