Sunday, October 30, 2011

Best Little Book in my library...

I did a little sewing today.  I did a little organizing and then I moved on to some planning and quilt designing.  Several timese during my sewing and designing stage, I reached for a little blue book that has been part of my library for about 15 years.  It was the best $8 I ever spent.  This book contains so many useful bits of information that every quilter should have one at her fingertips.  Here is what it looks like --
I purchased mine at a quilt shop, but I have seen them at Joann's, online, at, several places.  If you find yourself trying to remember what size a twin quilt should be... if you need help making continuous binding... if you need to know how many inches of binding you need for a particular size quilt... the information in the pages of this little book seems almost endless. 

Check it out!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Bundled Up Snowman... Week 4 of Free Block of the Week

Since I will be spending some quality time with my DH tomorrow, I decided to get this week's snowman posted a bit early.  He's quite simple and will work up in no time at all! 

I did receive my fabrics from Connecting Threads a couple of weeks ago.  I spent the appropriate amount of time admiring my thrifty purchase and promptly placed the fabrics on my gotta-get-to-it-soon stack in my sewing room.  I have also prewashed my white batting and it sits there with my fabric.  Thus far, my Let It Snow-Man! quilt is completely virtual -- thanks to Electric Quilt 7.  I will get it done -- soon but I have been so busy with finishing up projects and working on my Bali Wedding Star.  My next class for this Judy Neimeyer quilt is November 5th and I refuse to show up without all of my homework done!

If you have finished any blocks, please send me a picture at or post on my facebook page.  I'd love to see them and post them in my gallery.

Speaking of my gallery, please go to and check out my most recent finished project.  Download this week's snowman while you're there!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Patriot Dreams Tablerunner

I'm not usually a tablerunner person but I have a friend who loves them.  I completed this one using a panel from the Patriot Dreams fabric line by Henry Glass.  To be quite honest, I wasn't at all impressed with the panel itself.  It looked too much like -- well, a printed fabric panel.  I decided to sew blue rick rack over the "seams" between the blocks.  Now I actually like the darn thing.  When I started this little project -- which took me just over 3 hours to complete including quilting and binding! -- I was thinking of a gift for my tablerunner friend.  Now, I'm thinking I may just keep it!

Here are some pics of some of  the "blocks"

This simple project consists of the printed panel, batting and backing.  I sandwiched the layers and did some quick meandering on my home machine.  Then I laid the blue rick rack over the "seams" on the panel and stitched it down with matching thread.  I put the binding on and voila! I have a nice tablerunner that measures 22" x 40". 

You can get the panel at This Is Sew Broadway in Crookston, MN for a mere $7.13.  They also have some of the coordinating fabrics if you want to use them for backing and binding.  If you call them at 218-470-0070 they will even mail it out to you!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Back by popular demand...

As many of you know, I recently started working parttime at This Is Sew Broadway -- my favorite LQS in Crookston, MN.  This is definitely the job for me.  Yesterday I was actually PAID to sit in front of the most awesome Janome 11000 and make a Classy Bag (pictured above) as a sample.  Yep -- happy is the quilter who can get a paycheck to test drive the newest Cadillac of sewing machines!

Anyway -- as a result, the quilt shop needs my pattern for the bag and the owner also mentioned that she would like the Armchair Buddy patterns as well.  Both of these patterns were released last year but I'm reposting them today.

Both are fast, easy and fun to make.  They would also make great gifts for the upcoming holidays.  Check them out at the Free Patterns link at my website.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

I'm on an applique kick today...

My daughters have all been talking about pumpkin carving with their children as they prepare for Halloween.  I really love pumpkin carving -- in theory.  I don't love the mess that comes with the process so I decided to get my pumpkin creativity out of my system using EQ7.  Here are the results... Check out the free pattern at

Nighttime Visitor

I let my dogs out very early this morning and actually saw an owl in the tree in my backyard.  Of course, there I stood in my pajamas with three dogs dancing at my feet and this owl just sat staring at me.  It would have been a wonderful photograph but, alas, I don't usually carry my camera while in my PJs.  I decided to create this little applique pattern to commemorate my visitor instead.  I've done it as a 12" x 12" block so it will be just right for my Ackfeld Company little quilt hanger. You can get this free pattern at my website

This picture shows Marble Stars by Moda as the background fabric.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Let It Snowman Block Two is here!

The Flower Hat Snowgirl pattern for week 3 of Let It Snow-man! has been posted.  Go to to download it.  While you're there, check out a few more of the free patterns that are available.  I will be working on some of my holiday projects in the days to come and I will be sharing some photos.  If you have any projects that you'd like to share, just send pics to and I'll post them too.  I love to see what others are working on.  It is a major source of inspiration!

Friday, October 21, 2011

New Job in a Quilt Shop!!!

I just started a new job this week.  It is a part time position doing what I love most!  This Is Sew Broadway in Crookston, MN has given me the opportunity to work in a great shop with wonderful people.  I love it, love it, LOVE it!!!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Christmas is right around the corner...

We have a nip in the air up here in northwest Minnesota today.  It has been an unusually mild fall this year and when I looked at the calendar, realizing that half the month of October is done, I was a bit surprised.  By this time I am usually hauling out the winter clothes, getting things ready for snow to cover the ground.  Haven't even thought about it yet this year.

Reality is Christmas is right around the corner... okay, I know we have a couple of months, but if you want to make any Christmas goodies from fabric, you'd better get a move on!  To help you get into the mood, I have posted one of my favorite quilted Christmas projects ever.  I call it Stocking Fun -- a quilt-as-you-go stocking that you can whip up in just a couple of hours.  I made a whole set of them for my daughter and her family last year in the cabin-outdoorsy flannels shown in this picture.  I got several requests for some in other colors from other family members.  So... I'm pawing through my stash to find the fabrics requested so I can make a few more this year.

Check out the FREE pattern for this project at and get the spirit going early!  Merry Christmas!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Week 2 Snowman with Pipe block is HERE!

I have posted the first actual block of the FREE pattern Let It Snow-Man! on my website  I had every intention of having this posted on Wednesday but life intervenes at the most inconvenient times!  But I finally got it together and posted.  I will posting new blocks on Sundays from now on.  My schedule will have less chance of interrupting my intentions that way.  Please click on this picture to find the pattern!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sensational Fusible Applique Tutorial...

Since many of my friends and followers are getting ready to embark upon an applique adventure, I decided to see what kind of resources are out there to help understand the fusible applique technique. I found a fabulous crafter on YouTube by the name of thecraftygemini. She actually has LOTS of very good video tutorials, but the Fusible Applique Tutorial is great! Check it out before we start the Let It Snow-Man! quilt. If you have never done this technique, you'll understand it right away. If you are an old hand at fusible applique... well, it can never hurt to have a refresher.  Thanx a lot Gemini!!!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Building My Snowman! Super Sale on Fabric! Only $3.44/yd!

These are the two fabrics that I've selected for my Let It Snow-Man! quilt. I ordered them online yesterday at Connecting Threads and the price was definitely right,  Only $3.44 per yard so the fabric for my 56 x 56 quilt cost less than $12.  Even with the $4.99 shipping charge it was less than $5 per yard!  Of course, if you have other shopping to do, there is free shipping on orders over $50. 

I am going to use scraps of Warm & White batting to do the snowman faces and the snowball blocks.  I ran it through the washer and dryer today so when my fabric gets here I'll be all ready to build my first snowman of the season!  My past experience with Connecting Threads tells me that I can expect my order to arrive on Tuesday or Wednesday.

I'll be posting the Snowman with a Pipe block on Wednesday!  If you want to build your own snowman, just go to to download Week 1 Fabric Requirements and Preparation and watch this blog and/or my website for weekly installments.

Building a Snowman...

I am finalizing the pattern and instructions for the Snowman with Pipe block.  Just want to share a technique that you will find extremely helpful in completing this project and will serve you well in future projects as well.  In order to keep my applique blocks from feeling stiff, I like to "window" my fusible product.  I learned this technique on the Fons & Porter Love of Quilting television program and they have wonderful instructions available on their website.  I am posting the link to the pdf file but they also have a great video tutorial if that would be more helpful to you. 



Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Machine Quilting Class!

I signed up for an online machine quilting class at  As most of you know, I've been machine quilting on my home machine for years, but this course has soooooo much information.  Wendy Butler Berns is the instructor and the interactive format of the website makes it so easy to ask questions and share pictures and information.  Here is a link to get the class for only $25 and that's for permanent access to the online class -- forever! So take advantage of this special price before it expires!

If you aren't sure that you want to take the course, there is an introduction video that gives a summary.  Check it out!

Monday, October 3, 2011

After being inspired by a quilt I saw somewhere out in cyberland, I started designing this little gem using my EQ7 software.  I've decided to share it as a FREE Block of the Week on my website.  The first installment is available at  Cruise around while you're there and see if you can find any other goodies you might like.  It's all FREE!  Drop me a message and let me know what you think at

Sunday, October 2, 2011

I spent Friday evening and all day Saturday in a class to make this quilt.  The picture doesn't do it justice! This is a Judy Niemeyer quilt and I have been wanting to make the quilt for a long time.  I already own a couple her patterns but I just haven't been brave enough to make the leap into the process.  The pattern for this quilt is about 18 pages long and looks very daunting.  I consider myself a pretty experienced quilter and I was still a bit intimidated when I looked at it. 

I can tell you though that taking this class is the best decision I've made in a long time.  Catherine Erickson (a certified Judy Niemeyer instructor) is a joy.  She explains things so well and takes the intimidation factor out of the process completely!  This is not a fast project by any stretch of the imagination -- especially since I chose to make the 104"x104" size.  There are two more classes in the process with plenty of homework in between, but the result is going to be so worth it.  I'll be posting pictures along the journey!