Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Ornament Progress

I'm making progress on my ornaments for this year.

I have two appliqued and embroidered, the top two. I have 16 more that are appliqued and ready for embroidery. Not shown, I have about 10 more that are pinned waiting to be appliqued.

I'm planning to take these with me to Fall Market at the end of the month to work on in my hotel room at night.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Fabric Basket

I found a new basket pattern.

I put the spool of thread in the photo for scale.

Unfortunately, I didn't really like the pattern. It wasn't particularly difficult, but the results were less than stellar. This side looks okay, but the other side ... not so much. Oh well! Sometimes that's what you get with a free pattern. At least I didn't spend any money a pattern I don't like.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Wool Swiss Cheese

Yesterday's project: my baggie of tiny wool scraps is full so it's time to punch circles out of them.

I use my Accuquilt cutter with the Rose of Sharon die to cut small flowers, leaves and 1", 3/4", 1/2" circles from my small scraps of wool. I use my 1/4" circle and 3/8" circle punches to whack little circles from the rest. It's kind of a noisy task and I use ear plugs so I don't give myself a headache or damage my hearing. I have a jar or tin for each size/shape.

I needed to do this yesterday because I was home alone, except for the cat. This project is too loud to do with others in the house!

These will be used for my 2017 ornaments.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Updated Rose of Sharon Bag :: A Finish

The new bag is done!

This is side one

And side two

The pattern is written and the kits are being cut.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Melted Cat

I've been working on things but I don't have any photos yet. I've haven't shared a Ms. Spooky Boo photo with you recently so I thought I'd share this one which was taken Sunday afternoon.

She had been napping on the bed all afternoon and moving with the sun! When the nap started she was curled up in a ball, but as the afternoon progressed and the sun warmed her she started sprawling. 

The quilt was a wedding gift from my mom.

Friday, September 22, 2017

For A Friend

As a quilt shop owner I get asked the question fairly often, "Will you make a quilt for me?" My standard answer is, "I'm sorry, no. I sell the supplies to make quilts.  I'd be happy to set up a class for you to teach you how to make a quilt, but I don't make quilts for people." However, occasionally circumstances are such that I say yes. This is one of those times.

To protect her privacy I will not reveal details, but I'm making this for a friend. The fabric is hers purchased years ago from the previous quilt shop in town. She has saved this fabric all this time planning to make herself a quilt with it. The quilt is finally getting made, although by me instead of her. The pattern is an oldie but goodie called Bundle of 10. You need 10 fat quarters for the center plus some sashing and border fabric. I've had the pattern for years but never had the right fabric collection and time to make it. 

There isn't enough fabric left for a backing so I need to pick something from the shop. I'm sure we've got something that will be perfect. There is enough fabric left from the center for a scrappy binding using some of the fabrics from the center. I'm not sure if that is what I want though. If not, I'm sure the perfect binding fabric is also in the shop somewhere.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

New Pattern

I'm making a new bag pattern for the wool applique and hand embroidery class I teach at my shop. Here is what it looks like so far.

The applique on the left hand section is done. I'm just getting started with the applique on the right hand section. Both sections will have lots of hand embroidery added once the applique is done.

When finished it will be lined (I haven't picked lining fabric yet), will have a turquoise zipper at the top that matches the ribbons and will measure about 12" wide by 8" tall by 2" deep.

The plan is to kit this up with everything you'll need to make one and all of the appliques already cut. Hopefully I can get the sample made up by the end of September.

Friday, September 15, 2017

2017 Ornament Testing

I have settled on an ornament design for this year. Here is my test ornament.

This one is two 2" circles of wool with embroidery on both sides. I whipstitched them together with a 1 1/2" circle of Soft & Stable in between then added a hanging loop. I've decided that 2 1/2" circles would be better and plan to add some more wool elements in addition to some embroidery. I've started on my first "real" ornaments but haven't gotten far enough with any of them to photograph them yet.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Unexpected Sewing Time

Two things happened last week that provided me with some unexpected sewing time on Friday morning. 

First, some ladies wanted to take a class that is taught by one of my employees. This employee was not scheduled to work on Friday, but agreed to teach the class to these ladies on Friday since that is what worked best for them. The easiest thing to do was to change the schedule so that the teacher worked on Friday instead of me. So I ended up with an unplanned day away from the store. My plan was to get caught up and ahead on some computer work for the shop.

Second, Thursday afternoon internet access went out for much of Alamosa. Some cable was damaged along the Front Range but it effected us too. We were without internet for almost 24 hours! Which meant that I couldn't do any of the work I had planned to do on Friday morning.

I was frustrated at first, but then quickly realized that this could be a good thing. So ... I sewed all morning!

I made these two Whatcha Got Bags.

The big one in the back is for a gift exchange I'm participating in later this week. The front one will be a Christmas gift.

The internet was restored around noon on Friday and my sewing time ended. It was fun while it lasted!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Jiffy Jelly Roll Grunge Dots Quilt :: A Finish

I managed to get this one finished!

This was a really fun quilt to make and used up the entire jelly roll. Seriously, I have no scraps left over. Love that!

It makes a nice size too, 48" by 60". For the back I used a Carrie Bloomston print.

It doesn't really "go" with the front but I like this fabric and wanted to use it in something. The label is one of last year's Row by Row license plates from my shop. I've been using these for labels on shop samples.

You can read my previous post about this project by clicking here.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Fat Quarter Project

This will be the project my scrap groups will be working on for the next few months.

It finishes at 37" by 48" which is the perfect size for my guild's quilts for oncology project. All of the fabrics I used in this are from my friend Judy who passed away last year. She had good taste in fabric! This would also have been a project that appealed to her. The pattern calls for scrappy binding cut from the fat quarters used in the top. This is already cut. I also have a piece from Judy that is large enough for the back. So except for the batting, the whole thing is made from Judy's stash! I think she would approve.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Jelly Roll Bag

I saw this tutorial from Man Sewing about how to make a bag using only a jelly roll. I was intrigued and decided to try it.

It took a long time to press all the strips. Easily the most time-consuming part of this project.

I opted to cover my side seams with a leftover strip. Next time I will not do this and use the extra strips in the body of the bag instead.

For this one I used 32 strips for the body, 2 strips to cover the side seams, four strips for the handle and one for the top edge. I had one strip leftover. Next time I will use, four strips for the handle and the rest for the body. I also found the 4" boxed corner recommended in the tutorial to be way too large. I used a 2.5" measurement instead. 

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Kitty RunAround Bag

The boy is a pacer. He likes to listen to music and such and paces back and forth while listening. Lately he has been using his new Kindle to listen through but it doesn't fit nicely in a pocket. He has been using one of my RunAround Bags to put his Kindle in. It isn't made from "manly" fabrics. So on Saturday I let him pick out two fabrics from the shop for me to make one just for him. This is what he chose.

He does love our kitty and she him. I believe she approves of his choices.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Cake Mix Recipe 3 :: Part 3, A Finish

Quilted, bound and done!

It finished at 40" by 50", a perfect size to become a quilt for my guild's oncology quilt project after the shop is done with it.

I used only part of the layer cake to make the front, the rest are on the back.

Here are links to the first and second posts on this project:

Post 1 and Post 2

This was fun to make and not super hard. I started with the pinwheel and worked my way out to layout the half square triangles. I have half square triangles left over. I could have done another row on the long side and still have a few left over, but decided against that. This size works for my purposes.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Chinese Finger Puzzle Quilt

This is another top I've made in preparation for Sew a Jelly Roll Day coming up in September.

The top requires one jelly roll (40 2 1/2" strips) and that's it! Without borders, as shown, it will finish at 48" by 56". I used a jelly roll from Sweetwater's Cookie Exchange fabric line from Moda.

This is one of the free patterns I'll be handing out in my shop next month with the purchase of Jelly Roll or any of our 2 1/2" strip packs.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Everything Old is New Again :: Chenille

Last weekend I tried the chenille technique for the first time. This is not a new technique, but I'd never done it now. I used five of these panels.

You have to line things up, pin in place, then sew diagonal channels. Actually, I marked the sewing lines on the top one first, then layered the panels. I sewed them half inch apart. Cut the top four layers between the sewn lines, wash and dry.

I put an envelope backing on mine with binding. This way it can be a wall hanging or a pillow. I'll have to make a pillow form for it since it finished at an odd size, about 17" by 21".

I could have been more careful when lining things up, but I think it turned out alright. 

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Jiffy Jelly Roll Grunge Dots Quilt Top

I'm preparing for National Jelly Roll Day. It will be September 16th this year. 

I'm putting together some samples of quilts made from Jelly Rolls. This one is called the Jiffy Jelly Roll Quilt. It uses pretty much every bit of a jelly roll and makes a 48" by 60" finished size quilt. I love that there is nothing left of the jelly roll!

This will be one of a few free patterns I'll be giving to customers on National Jelly Roll Day with the purchase of a Jelly Roll.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Cake Mix Recipe 3 :: Part 2

I've got the center together!

It measures 33" by 43" at the moment. I think it needs a border. I'm trying to decide which fabric to use for the border. 

I only used half of the layer cake for this and have a few half square triangles (HST) left over. I'm planning to piece the rest of the layer cake squares together to make the back. The rest of the HST will just get added to my scraps stash. I can always use already made 2.5" HST!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017


A friend recently went to Alaska and brought me back a gift!

She knows me well. It is blue with circles. Love it!

Another gift, this one from a customer.

She has an embroidery machine, loves to use it, and is quite good with it too. She makes these adorable zipper pouches with various designs on the front. She gifted me this one last week.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

UFO Progress

This one has been in progress for quite some time. The last time I showed it to you was in November 2014! Click here to read that post.

Recently I put the final quilting stitches in!

I'm not sure if I want to put binding on this or a facing or something else. I'll think about it for a bit. Obviously I'm in no hurry to get this finished!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Cake Mix Recipe 3

I had so much fun playing with Cake Mix Recipe 1 that I decided to pick another one to play with. If you don't remember what I ended up making with recipe 1, click here to see that finished top.

Recipe 3 makes 2" finished HST units. I chose a layer cake from the Haiku fabric line from Moda.

There are lots of blocks you can make with HST units but I decided not to make blocks. Instead, I'm trying to create a design with them. Above is my current favorite layout. 

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Basic Embroidery

After completing my hand embroidered Colorado State Bird & Flower piece there was interest in having a basic hand embroidery class at my shop. So I've started a little piece as a class sample.

My plan is to stitch on the lines which are printed on this fabric. I'm limiting my colors to the three you see above, light gray, charcoal and turquoise. I'm using Eleganza size 8 threads but any embroidery floss will work. 

Students will be able to choose to work on either the Colorado State Bird & Flower block or on a fat quarter of the fabric shown above. The advantage of these is that everything is printed on the fabric so you can just start stitching. The class will start with back stitching and go from there. Should be fun!