Renovations Completed on the Haunted House Quilt

If you are considering a new renovation project, I highly recommend choosing a haunted house. Imagine the satisfaction of taking a sledgehammer to an old wall, and then not even having to rebuild it! So I was able to fling off roof shingles, bar up windows, post dilapidated warning signs, and bring in undesirable neighbors– and the house looks even better, even more haunted.

Here is the new haunted house:

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And a detail of my favorite part, the cemetery with an eerie tree:

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The quilt is available in the shop here

Want to build your own haunted house? The pattern is available, and it is detailed! 38 pages of instructions and full size pattern pieces, including an extra full page of optional Halloween appliques to customize your house. A beginner or experienced sewist will enjoy this project. Here is the link to the download pattern

Have Some Red, White and Blue Sewing Fun!

Celebrate Independence Day with a red, white and blue pinwheel quilt. The pinwheel is made with a unique 3 dimensional pattern that is both striking in appearance and easy to create, even for a beginner. What I love best about this quilt is the texture– the pinwheel seems to pop out of the quilt– maybe it wants to be a real pinwheel.

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The quilt and pattern are available in the shop, here

Second Star to the Right and Straight on ‘Till Morning

When my grandmother got confused and frustrated sometimes she would say, “It’s so convoluted!!”. Usually things went downhill from there into more colorful language, but I still understood the sentiment. Something that should be straightforward in design and application was twisted instead. Quilts often fall into this category. In an effort to make a better quilt, we just make a more convoluted one instead.

Here is a pattern that is new yet seems very familiar in it’s design. It’s a simple patchwork quilt, updated to work well with precut fabric in a “fat quarter” size.

 

 

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The pattern is called “Easy Peasy Fat Quarter Baby Quilt” and it is available in the shop here. The quilts in the picture are also available for sale here.

 

The Devil is in the Details

Details, details, details.  How many details to include is always a challenge to me when I write a pattern. One of the first steps in many of my patterns goes something like this: 1. Cut 5 –  4  inch squares from the border fabric.  This is a very clear step. It also assumes lots of background knowledge and steps that were done before the measuring and cutting.

For instance, maybe the fabric needed to be prewashed. Most fabric doesn’t require prewashing, but I always test solid reds for color bleeding. Another missing step — cut off the selvedges before cutting your fabric, or at the very least not include the selvedges in your quilt. Don’t forget this one – always iron your fabric before measuring and cutting. I rarely include any of these details in my patterns. I assume that the sewer knows them.

It’s tricky sometimes to decide, especially in this age of short tweets, how close to trim the directions. Too short and important steps are misunderstood. Too long and the reader becomes confused and lost.

I published 2 new patterns last week; I tried to make the directions not too long, not too short, but just right.

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The quilts, bunting, coasters and patterns are available in the shop here.

The Three Most Important Design Elements in a Quilt Pattern

I believe that all great quilt designs should be clear, easy to follow, and efficient in both use of material and use of time. I want everyone who buys one of my patterns to actually make the quilt, start to finish, in a short period of time. So all my patterns have complete directions all the way to “wrap quilt around recipient”. The pattern never ends with “layer, quilt as desired and bind” — to me that means you will have an unfinished quilt top to leave to your heirs.

Every pattern also has to be clear. If you stop because you don’t understand the next step, your project may be gathering dust for years. So numbered, detailed instructions with lots of photos and email support free from me is included with every pattern.

Another important ingredient to a great pattern is efficient use of materials. And that brings me to this week’s project. I had some fat quarters in this great pattern called Indian Summer. There were teepees on one of the prints and their triangle shape inspired me to make a saw toothed edged baby quilt. When I finished the quilt, I had lots of leftover triangles, so in the interest of efficient use of materials, I designed a bunting to use the triangles. Then, because I was on a roll of inspiration and had 4 corners of leftover fabric, I designed coasters to match.

Here is the result:

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The completed set is available in the shop here, the pattern is in the works.

Bet You Don’t Have One of These!

My grandmother made me a denim clothespin dress 20 years ago and I still use it. Over the years I’ve grown attached to my little dress. She gets tossed on top of the laundry basket and out to hang on the line a few times a week, and never complains:) Her dress is large enough to hold all the pins I need.

It’s so special to have a useful friend through the years, I made this clothespin dress after my grandmother’s pattern. I think it will last as long as mine. It’s made of heavy weight denim with a little apron from vintage fabric from an estate sale. A wooden hangar is included and 2 ribbons are attached to prevent the dress from sliding off the hangar.

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This clothespin dress and another are available in the shop here.

This is the clothespin dress my granny made me. I’ll use it for the rest of my life. If I need to, I’ll patch it. Some things get more treasured with time:)

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How About a Trip to a Coral Reef?

Are you thinking of summer? How about the beach? How about a tropical coral reef? I bet you can guess where my dreams were on vacation this week:

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This quilt is called “Fish in School”. The background fabric is by Art_On_Fabric.  It is the first experiment I’ve done ordering and using Spoonflower fabric. I really like the quality of the cotton weave. I also like that the fabric pattern will always be available. Often after buying a pattern, people  will contact me trying to get the exact same fabric I’ve used in the original  to make their quilt. Sometimes the fabric is discontinued and no longer available. Spoonflower prints the fabric on demand. No waste, no shortage. How cool is that!

The pattern for “Fish in School” is available here. The quilt is available here.

Wee Wandering Some More

Okay, I’m officially on a Wee Wander, Sarah Jane, Michael Miller binge. I’m working on my third baby quilt from this fabric line. I have fabric for 2 more quilts impatiently waiting. Something about the sweetness in the designs just inspires me.

The quilt I’m sharing with you this week is called Fairy Tale Woods. The fabric is called Wander Woods. It has trees, children, deer, horses all in a humble presentation that is so enchanting. When I saw the fabric I wanted to somehow stay there, inside the story. It occurred to me that if one was going to stay in Wander Woods, one would need a house to live in. And then I thought, the only way to stay in Wander Woods forever would be to be a fairy. So I made the fairy houses so the fairies could stay in Wander Woods.

Here is the quilt:

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And a closeup:

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The quilt and the pattern are available in my shop here.

I’ll be linking up with these great blogs:

Do Tell Tuesday  at Mabey She Made It

Fabric Tuesday at Quilt Story

Tuesdays with a Twist at Back to Basics

Olivia’s Baby Quilt

Olivia is about to be born! My first granddaughter is scheduled to be delivered this Thursday, Lord willing. I’m so excited! I love her already so much. Last week I got serious about designing and making her baby quilt. I felt so much affection; I guess that’s why there are hearts in all the corners of the quilt. Then, because I wanted it to be very personal, I added her name in applique letters. Then, because I wanted a bit of magic, fairies showed up here and there. Add in some borders and stripes, take away what didn’t work and here it is:

Olivia’s Baby Quilt:

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The quilt belongs to Olivia but the pattern is available in the shop here. The pattern comes with a complete upper and lower case alphabet.

I’ll be linking up to these great blogs:

Fabric Tuesday at Quilt Story

Sew Cute Tuesday at Blossom Heart Quilts

Linky Tuesday at Freemotion by the River

Looking for love? Here it is, Writ Large.

Looking for love? Here it is, writ large.  This quilt project started with a center panel design called  “Love”. It was created by Amy Biggers for Robert Kaufman. The panel is entirely pink, lightest pink to darker pink, pink, pink, pink. So my biggest challenge was what color to add to the quilt to not draw the eye away from the center motif. I finally settled on a mottled dark red for the borders, beautiful but restful. Then, to solve the quilt’s need for a bit of color contrast, I put a blue backing on the borders. I made it a rag quilt, so the frilly edges of the seams brought just a bit of blue into the quilt front.
Now I’ll show you the love:
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The Love quilt is available in my shop here.
Linking up to:
Sew Cute Tuesday at Blossom Hearts Quilts
Fabric Tuesday at Quilt Story
Show and Tell Tuesday at I have to say….