Archive for Quilts

But who’s counting?

So. Where were we? Or where was I? You thought I disappeared, didn’t you? It felt like it there for a while. Lest you think I’ve been lounging on a beach or resting on my laurels, I have some things to show for my time.

I’m especially excited to have a quilt in issue six of the most awesome Fat Quarterly. Against Traffic is a foundation pieced kaleidoscope-y quilt using two shades of grey and all of Marcia Derse’s prints from her Third in Line fabric collection. I grew extremely fond of these prints while I sewed. And we spent a considerable amount of time together, so I think it says A LOT for Marcia’s fabrics that I still love them after all that togetherness. :-)

Love those fabrics!

I also wanted to show you the latest Dollies Online quilt for July called Mass Appeal:

I saw a vintage quilt with orange peel blocks on point in two colors and my head went boing.  Speaking of the Dollies Online, you can now purchase the downloadable patterns individually over at Sarah’s lovely web site. Mass Appeal will show up there shortly as well. I didn’t mind sacrificing that blue sewing themed Suzuko Koseki print for this quilt. It seemed a worthy use.

I’ve also been keeping up with the Farmer’s Wife blocks. Got a little behind when we lost power for three days. Here are some recents:

I’ve been digging through some of my old Kaffe fabrics and scraps of old projects. Going down fabric memory lane.

Last but not least, a step by step by step project, indeed… Sarah‘s Hanging Lanterns pattern. First, cut 800 (or more in case of goof ups…ahem), fan blades and sew them.

And turn them.

And press them.

And sew them together into arcs and get them ready for the next step.

As Sarah has reminded me, she did all of this already and I should not complain. No complaints. Just noting for posterity and recordkeeping and goal setting.

I’m also dabbling in the Japanese Boxes quilt from issue 81 of Quiltmania. I saw this quilt over at the gorgeous Facile Cecile blog. I couldn’t get it out of my mind. And then I re-drafted it ever so slightly so I didn’t have to cut anything in 1/16ths of an inch (sometimes my laziness instead makes my brain hurt a little more) and could use a rotary ruler. These are a little on the addictive side and very easy to sew on the machine.

So, that’s some of what’s going on here. I’ve missed you.

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Two by two

Two blocks a week for the Farmer’s Wife Sampler Quilt. I got my blocks done early this week.

Block 9 – Box

Block 10 – Bowtie

Last week’s blocks:

Block 7 – Birds in the Air

Block 8 – Bouquet

I just now realized that the blocks are in alphabetical and numerical order. At least the way I’m doing them. Who knew?

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Put a bucket on your head!

School’s out for summer!

School friends seemed to be going down memory lane today, so I thought I’d join in. She’s gonna kill me.

Speaking of joining in. Trying to keep up with the Joneses by joining in The Farmer’s Wife Quilt-Along being led by Amanda and Angela. Katy predicts I will last until sometime in July. Sounds about right. So far I’m just making in numerical order and I think I’m going for slightly understated colors. So far.

And then I look at other people’s blocks and I like their fabric choices better than mine. ::sigh::

Are you making Farmer’s Wife blocks? Don’t forget to put a bucket on your head!

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Georgia on My Mind block tutorial

For my purposes, I’m going to call this block Georgia on My Mind. Mainly because the block is called Georgia and it’s on my mind. I have to admit that I’ve never been to Georgia so I think the state itself can’t really be on my mind. I’m sure it’s lovely though.

Taking inspiration from Amy’s lovely tutorial layout for the Japanese x and + block, I did up some drawings rather than photo explanation. I’ve added some detail photos for the inset square. Click on the images below for full size.

Georgia on My Mind

Honestly, you know me (lazy…), would I make you do an inset seam if I didn’t think it was the best choice aesthetically? You can do this!


The photos below show how I pressed my corner blocks. The goal is to reduce bulk. You may find a better way that works for you. You may also need to trim the completed corners to 3 1/2″ square. If you do, each half of the block should measure 1 3/4″ (i.e., don’t just trim the square to 3 1/2″, make sure the corner square is 1 3/4″ and the mitered pieces are 1 3/4″).

Have fun!

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Dear Georgia…

Now I’m just teasing you. I’m almost done with the tutorial for the 1957.5/Georgia block. It has been raining here for days hampering efforts to get decent photos. Since it’s still raining, I took maybe less than decent photos today. Will post the tutorial tomorrow.

I’m off to de-humidify something.

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1957.5 + 1970

What a coincidence! I’ve been puttering around with a block I saw while thumbing through Barbara Brackman’s Encylopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns.

I have many old block reference books but only recently added this one to the collection. Clearly an oversight on my part. Clearly.

So, I’ve been puttering with this block working out sizing — the book is a block reference, patterns are not included — and today I arrived at a successful test block.

This is referred to as 1957.5, the Georgia block as published in the periodical Hearth and Home. My version came out to 8″ unfinished. It almost ended up bigger because I couldn’t initially work out the maths involved in sizing that corner square — it is inset into an corner formed by a seam that is pieced at a 45 degree angle. I persevered. Now I am happy with the size.

By coincidence, I said to myself, hey, I’ve been cutting a lot of 2″ squares lately for my One Block Over virtual quilting bee blocks. I wonder if those blocks are the same size as these blocks?

Would you look at that?

Now, the blocks to the right and left of 1957.5 are 1970 (only one page over from 1957.5), a spool block attributed to Nancy Cabot from 1938. This block has gotten the “Badskirt bump” lately. Amy (badskirt) posted a tutorial for the Japanese x and + block after loads of people went gaga over a quilt by Setsuko Inagawa, a picture of which the lovely Jan posted after her visit to the 2011 Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival. I went gaga as well. Happily for me, Amy posted her tutorial just as I was getting ready to send out fabrics for my month of the quilting bee.  There are loads of blocks to see over at the quilt-along Flickr group.

I have a sinking feeling I may need to make two quilts — or maybe three? — one quilt of only 1957.5, one quilt of 1957.5 combined with 1970, and one quilt of 1970.


Whatever the outcome, both blocks are great ones to use up scraps (especially the spool block/1970) and they are Goldilocks-sized — just right. I’m not sure why they seem to perfect at this size but they do. Hmmm, maybe I could even modify the center of the 1957.5 block so it has one rectangle rather than a different fabric square in the middle. Hmmm, I feel more puttering coming on…

Would anyone like a tutorial?

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Hey, who took away the warm part of spring? I just got my sandals out. I had the air conditioning on for a night.

Now the furnace is back on and I wore my winter coat to the bus stop. Bah!

Oh well.

A tease of warm weather certainly got me in the mood for sitting on the porch with an icy beverage. It also got me in the mood for light, bright colors.

This is the latest Dollies Online quilt called Fans of May.

I just love this palette of colors. It was also fun to mix some “of the moment” fabrics with some oldies but goodies from the stash. I’m being careful how I use that Kaffe yellow dot on grey. Endangered species, that.

I hope your weather knows what it’s doing because clearly mine does not.

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Shove over…

I’m trying to ride this bandwagon all the way to the wedding.

Looking at that block reminds me that — sadly — I am out of the lovely pink and white stripe of Sarah’s.

Tea and crumpets to you all!

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Sighted in…


It has been an exciting time mail-wise of late, as you will see. I just can’t help it, this is the most exciting mail of the year so far! I would venture to say that this is the most exciting mail of all of 2011 even though we’re not halfway through.


Sarah’s new book, Quilting, From Little Things, arrived at my house. I will confess up front that I got a little weepy going through the book — I am SO happy for my friend AND this book is THAT gorgeous! It is a triumph. I know Sarah’s my friend and all but, honestly, this book is at the tippy top of the list of best quilting books. For creativity, for fun projects, for technical know-how and for beauty. The photography by Sue Stubbs is spectacular. I felt like I could reach out and touch the quilts in the photos. Beautiful!

I also think my weepiness came from the fact that the quilts capture the essence of Sarah somehow (So Very Sarah TM) — and that is in a combination of things from the fabric choices to the visual references to quilting’s past (and moving those references forward to the present) to the abundant perle quilting to the technical expertise (clear from those great photos). I can’t explain it sufficiently but these quilts have Sarah’s DNA (and not from the time that she poked herself with a needle and got blood followed by spit on a quilt….I don’t know that that happened but you know what I mean). These are awfully big things that have grown from little things.


And I’m not just saying that.

Like trying to pick a favorite child (well, I could since I only have one), I can’t pick a favorite quilt from the book. Maybe I will just call these “the ones I’d like to make first.”

Oh, dear, Hanging Lanterns quilt, you are  wonderful and beautiful…. I also like that we’ve seen snippets of the quilts on Sarah’s blog and now we get to see the full “reveal.”

Shining no less brightly is The Night Garden. ::sigh::

Oh dear, I really want to make them all first but I probably shouldn’t put a pic of every quilt here in my blog post. Bad form, no doubt. And I’m leaving out the eagles quilt that I love too. Shh, don’t tell the them.

And, oh, hello wall! I recognize those little quilts back there. How are you guys doing? You look happy in your Australian home! Toodle-oo from Mom!

In all seriousness, the book is a gem! Congratulations to Sarah and all the lovely people involved in putting it together! Bravo!!!

Don’t miss the Quilting, From Little Things blog tour going on now! Oh, and don’t forget to scroll down and read all about the book launch party. I was there in spirit and had to toast two days in a row just to make sure I covered the time change…all in a day’s work.

I would say don’t dawdle in getting yourself a copy of the book. I know that we in the U.S. won’t have the book in stores for some time to come, BUT, it looks like one can pre-order the book from the Book Depository in the UK.  The book is due in the UK early in May and the Book Depository has free worldwide shipping. I am a happy customer from previous orders.

Not to be overlooked, also in the package from Sarah was one of our Dollies Online quilts, Hugs and Kisses:

A is for adorable! I really need to get the number of that variegated thread Sarah’s been using too.

Thanks, Sarah!

Also not to be overlooked — see, didn’t I tell you the mail has been GREAT around here lately — I received my quilt from Doll Quilt Swap 10 from the ultra-talented and very angelic Carol (aka Mamacjt):

Isn’t it wonderful?! It’s called Colors Quartered and will be such a cheerful quilt on the sewing room wall! I can’t wait to hang it up. Those French knots slay me!

Thank you SO much, Carol!!

OK, I started a little organization project in said sewing room, so I’d better get back to it before we have to go to, let’s see, yes, the orthodontist today (back at that for a second round now that someone’s teeth are all in).

Happy stitching!

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Old and new

Some new and old things. Some new things that are also old like my new table.

I ::heart:: that table. Mwah, table!

A broken record every year crowing about the re-appearance of ranunculus at Trader Joe’s. So that’s an old story.

Learning from years past (and a regular old story with that Trader Joe…), buy more than one bunch cuz you won’t see them again and if you do they won’t be as good.

Some new quilts that are now almost old compared to these pics because they are now done and bound.

Love Liesl’s Modern Workshop quilt so I had to make it!

A spring-y quilt from Pat Sloan’s Fast Forward Quilts. Um, this counts as old because I pieced the top quite a while ago…ahem.

The colors are helping me keep in mind that it is indeed spring despite the still chilly temps. I have one sad little daffodil blooming in the cold.

I hope new things are blooming where you are!

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