May 30, 2016

Best Wishes Quilt

Earlier I had asked my Aunt if she wanted a quilt for a chairty event she was hosing for Make a Wish New Hampshire. I was so honored when she said yes! I can proudly say this quilt is going towards fulfilling children's wishes in the community. Hence the name Best Wishes.

Absolutely delighted.

Overflowing scrap bin? No problem!  

I started pulling pieces to make this quilt top in attempt to close the lid on my scrap pail. Check my "On the Issue of Scraps" post to learn more about how I pulled the color scheme for this top. Mostly I pulled pinks, purples, teals, blues, and low volumes and kept pulling and cutting.

Eventually I had enough for a twin sized top. I can now close the lid on my scrap pail but this quilt didn't put as many scraps to rest as I hoped.

The backing of this quilt is a light gray flannel, super soft and snuggly. Once it get's washed it's going to be hard to part with! Every scrappy quilt I make becomes another favorite, I just love them.

  • Finished Size: 64 inches by 88 inches 
  • Pattern: Boxes by Cluck Cluck Sew
  • Fabric: Small pieces from Stash
  • Batting: 80/20 blend
  • Thread: Connecting Threads - Blush
  • Quilting: Free Motion - Loops and Hearts

Fingers crossed this makes some money!! 

Fabric Used: - 15 yards
Net Loss: - 87 yards YTD

May 26, 2016

On the Issue of Scraps

Lately I have been contemplating the best use of scraps in quilts. Many times I get complements about how my colors look like they "go" together for scrap quilts. 

So. It's time to share the secret. 

My scrap bin in comparison to others is quite small. This little pail from IKEA is the max I keep around. When it starts overflowing, then it's time to sew some of those fabulous bits up! 

The secret to getting a pretty scrap quilt vs. scrap vomit ... 
Don't put in every bit, curate the scraps you use! 

What does this mean? To start, I dump all my scraps out and scatter them around the table. Then I start sorting the fabric into color themes that would look good. When I made the quilts below, I noticed my scrap bin was heavy on vibrant/bold colors.

My theme was born. I pulled all the bold colors and then pulled support colors that would work with my initial color scheme. Not all my scrap fabric got used. It was ok. What was left behind didn't work for this quilt. They were saved for something else. Check out the final products here.

This time around with many of my bolds missing, my bin had a lot of pastels and low volumes. When planning a pattern I first assess what my colors would be and the size of fabric. After deliberation I went with a square boxes pattern from Cluck Cluck Sew forgoing the outermost box. 

Once again scraps got left behind, right now my bin is heavy on navy's, warm colors, bright greens, and small bits. When working out the plans for my next quilt I will find something that works with a quilt heavy in that color scheme/size. 

Of course these stacks don't prove my point! 

What do you recommend for these remaining beauties? 

May 22, 2016

Twisted Nines: Tutorial

Twisted Nines is an easy baby quilt, perfect for beginners who want to take their quilting to the next step. The quilt finishes at 39 inches square.

To start you are going to need 2 charm packs (Dot. Dot. Dash-), and a quarter yard of solid fabric (Kona Midnight). I used fabric from yardage but if you can also use a fat quarter.
*Charm packs need to have 42 pieces of fabric each.

Disappearing 9 Patch Block: (Click the link if you are not familiar with this block)
To start sew the charm squares into a three by three block. You will use 9 charm squares for each block. Cut down the center vertically and horizontally to create four smaller blocks. Here is a visual. You will have 36 small blocks and 3 charm squares left over when finished.

The Twist: 
From the solid fabric cut three (if using yardage) 3 inch wide strips.  Subcut into 36 - 3 inch squares. Then mark a line diagonally across the square, sew along line. Trim excess a quarter inch from the sewn line. Press open. If you would like a shortcut, try the Frog Tape Trick.

Each block consists of 4 smaller blocks arranged the same way. Create 9 blocks in total. Then arrange them in a 3 by 3 layout. Sew the block together and you're finished!

Larger Size: 
Increase the size by using 3 charm packs. Sew the disappearing nine patch block, you will end up with 56 small blocks and no remaining charm squares. Cut your (1/2 yard) of solid fabric into 3 inch strips and subcut into 56 - 3 inch squares. Sew following the twist directions. Layout blocks in a 7 by 8 configuration.  Final quilt size will measure approximately, 45 inches by 52 inches.

Fabric Used: - 1.75 yards
Net Loss: - 72 yards YTD

May 18, 2016

Penny Tiles

Slow progress update. 

Hand quilting takes forever! This top was started back in January and I am a little over half way done. My Aunt promptly called dibs on this one, and she has been waiting.

One of my school friends makes her quilts without batting, and I loved the idea. It still has weight but not as warm, perfect for New England summers. I did go with a solid pink, flannel backing to make this great for spring and fall too.

So far, the drape and snuggle factor has been super!

May 14, 2016

Sunday Stash: Fabric Overload

Exactly one month ago I embarked on my retreat adventure in Kennebunkport, ME with NHMQG.

It was awesome. Not to mention the fabric acquisitions that happened during that joyous weekend. Actually + 25.5 yards of joy came home. I could lie to you and say all that fabric too so long to photograph, but that's not right. 

The honest truth it's spring and I have been lazy with sewing stuff, but that stack was daunting. 

Spring fever is real

MARDENS:  + 17.5 yards 

large cuts for backing

PINTUCK AND PURL: + 5.5 yards

love those sheep!

Michelle @From Bolt to Beauty and I made a pit stop on the way home to a new shop in our area. Maggie the spunky, amazingly awesome owner has quite a spectacular collection. The size of the shop is modest, but oh boy does it pack a punch.

Inside the shop we found, yarn, quilting fabric, garment patterns, classes, garment fabric (knits, voile, and fabric I know nothing about), threads, notions and more. Like I said it packs a punch!

Not too often I walk in a shop and think, yep one yard of everything!


Mon Ami by Basic Grey for Moda

Once again I can blame Michelle for this last NEED.  While I was making her drool over a my Starlight quilt using PB + J, she was making her Outlined Plus quilt with Mon Ami. Basic Grey did it again! I had to own those adorable little bikes. 

JUST BECAUSE: + 2 yards

I had ordered 4 - half yard cuts a while back just because those typewriters are so stinkin' cute. They played nicely with some other fabric that was out for another project so they got photographed together.  I am thinking those soothing colors would make a great quilt! Don't you agree?

Retreat Shopping: + 27.5 yards
YTD: - 26.75 yards

The whole net gain/loss got away from me. After double checking with all my posts from this year, this is the most accurate number. 

Net Gain: + 43.5 yards (way more than I thought ... oops) 
Net Loss: - 70.25 yards

May 11, 2016

Little Charity Quilting for NHMQG

Our fearless Charity Committee members at NHMQG handed out packs of 15 blocks to make a small baby quilt. We used Cotton Couture from Michael Miller and the Janome 50 blocks. 

Not having much to work with I went with an alternating hourglass pattern to increase the size. Then added a contrasting color to add more visual appeal. I used Kona White, Ash, and Curry.

For this quilt I went with 100% machine binding. It was my second attempt. Last time I sewed the front then the back. This time I did the opposite, back then front.

I like the look much better. AND to highlight my improved corners, check that out!

The backing is pieced from Cotton + Steel and DS that was in my stash. I love the jewel tones in this quilt and wanted to pull those bolder colors. Not to mention the deep magenta/purple binding.


Someone was not happy I was trying to photograph plants and not spending time with her!
Quilts acceptable, plants not so much.

Net: - 2.25 yards, YTD: - 21.75

May 06, 2016

Farmer's Wife 1920's: Finished

Oh tears of joy are being shed.

This finish has been a long time coming. My 1920's Farmer's Wife quilt got started in 2014, last year I purchased the super cute and fitting chicken fabric for the back. Then it sat for a whole year longer.

Pathetic completion rate, I know.

As I sat and bound this quilt, I was reminiscing that these blocks were created in 1922. It's almost one hundred years ago! How awesome is that? So long ago and still relevant.

poor detail shot of my little chicken fabric

Here are some links about the progress of this quilt ...

Farmer's Wife Quilt SamplerFarmer's WifeFarmer's Wife Sampler, Farmer's Wife Quilt Sampler,  Farmer's Wife, Farmer's Wife, Final Stretch, Farmer's Wife: Quilt Progress

A little more reminiscing to add.

While compiling all the links for this post I sat and read the comments for each post. Crazy how much time has gone by and friendships that had just started two years ago have turned into so much more. Friends who have continually inspired me through their blogs, and for some of them now in person friends! These two years have been such a wonderful adventure into the quilt world. 

Net: - 4 yards (backing + binding), YTD: - 19.5 yards

May 02, 2016

Stamping on Fabric

In my younger days I was determined to make my hobby scrapbooking. 

After about 4 years of a half hearted attempt, my hobby was abandoned. To be honest it never really started. Now I have all these do-das that don't have a purpose but I spent too much money on to toss. 

Oh the predicament! 

S.O.T.A.K. did a tutorial about stamping on fabric, and now some of my do-das have a new purpose! The stores around me didn't carry Versa Craft ink pads for fabric so I had to order online. They come in a variety of colors but I started with black.

Last month I did a tutorial on stamping on fabric for my guild and they also loved it. Some members related to my scrapbooking attempt and had the same predicament with their do-das.

SOTAK put quotes on hers, here is my attempt 

The whole process is very painless. Just stamp the message/image you want. Then with a hot DRY iron heat set the ink. I did mine (right side up) for a minute and no issues with smudging.

Still being skeptical that the process was this easy. I proceeded to submerge one of the heat set prints in hot water, then rubbed it dry with a towel. It held up! Success. 

Then I added Heat n' Bond Lite to the back of each square to convert the fabric into a label. 

Peel back the paper and appliqué the print to any project. I sew an eight of an inch from the edge around the whole piece. 


If you want to make a lot of prints at once, print design over a large panel of fabric.  Heat set the entire panel at the same time. Over heat setting isn't an issue. In my prints some parts got exposed for up to two minutes with no damage. Apply the Heat n' Bond Lite to the entire back of the panel. Fussy cut around each print to make individual labels.