Friday, May 26, 2017

My Yellow Blocks

I am not really a yellow kind of person.

Not something you'd realize looking at my Instagram feed where I've been sharing a block daily.  My daughter has claimed this quilt.  She is busy repainting her room a shade of gray.  I've got an awesome block setting in mind that will bring in some gray negative space to balance out the yellow.

My favorite block so far might be number 2 because of the two elephants.  I also like #10 (no yellow) or #12.   Which is your favorite?

For my project, I am using this FQ bundle of Pastel Pop by Michael Miller which was sitting in my stash. These fabrics are the ONLY yellow I've got in my stash other than a bit in a solid.

Read more about the QAL here and follow along on Instagram with #100Days100Blocks2017.  You can find the 100 Modern Quilt Blocks book on Amazon.
Photo credit to Angie

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Thursday, May 25, 2017

One Monthly Goal - May Finish Link-Up

Ready to link up your May project finish?  And don't panic, the link is open to midnight (EST) on May 31!

New to One Monthly Goal?  Welcome!  You can read about the event and the rules on the main event page.

Sign up to receive email notifications when the One Monthly Goal linkup is open.  Think of it as a helpful reminder!
My goal for May was to make a wall hanging from my blocks from the American Made Brand Our Land QAL.  (Block pattern available here - my blocks were downsized to 6 1/2'').  I really went to town (for me anyway!) on my FMQ.  You can see more about my quilt on this post.

Now it is your turn to link up - share your goal finish for May.

Please only link up if you finished your goal and if you also participated in the May Goal Setting Link-up.

There will be three winners this month - Fat Quarter Shop is offering a $25 gift certificate, Green Fairy Quilts is offering a $15 gift certificate.   The Stitch TV Show is offering a copy of their Lucky Star quilt pattern.

Note - This post will be updated with the names of the winners on or about June 1.

Visit the One Monthly Goal event page for the specific requirements for links and social tags. 

And remember, to be eligible for the prize(s) by random drawing you must linkup at both the goal setting and the accomplishment linkup in a given month. (May Goal Setting Link-up)

Make sure you add a link to this OMG post so others can follow where you are linking.   Let's make that easy -  just paste this into your post:  

Thanks for linking up!

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Wednesday, May 24, 2017


Recently I made some 'pineapple' blocks  as part of the skill builder QAL.  While I enjoyed making the block, this pineapple block was a lot more fun!

 My quilting is simple straight lines and then a cross hatch on the pineapple itself.  So much fun!

Making a pineapple mini quilt was the May challenge for Mini's and More hosted by Sherri and Michelle.

The pattern for this block is found here.  I downsized everything from small to smaller so I was using 1'' yellow squares (unfinished).

I often downsize quilt patterns to fit my needs.  Some basic tips on how to downsize to a really small block:

  • Reduce the finished block or unit size to the size you want to work with and then add 1/2'' for your seam allowances to calculate unfinished unit size
  • Adjust your stitch length to something smaller than you usually use
  • Finger press your seams
  • For tiny HST, draw a diagonal line down the wrong side of the lighter fabric and sew right to the side of the line.  Trim away excess.  Making no-waste HSTs is too fussy for tiny blocks.

I'll be linking up my mini quilt with  Freemotion by the River,   WIP Wednesday's,  Let's Bee SocialMidweek Makers.  Needle and Thread Thursdays, Finish it Up Friday and Finished or Not Friday.

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Monday, May 22, 2017

Stitching away

Sometimes the best kind of project is one that can be finished quickly.

Some fun stitching and framed with scraps from a Kate Spain line from many years ago.

Add some straight line quilting and I have a cute mini!  (Colors in picture below are truer.)

I just love this little bird.  Now this was supposed to be a gift but maybe it will find its way onto the wall in my studio.

You can find the pattern from Aurifil on this post.

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Friday, May 19, 2017

My Rin Block

Cheryl and Cindy have kicked off a new QAL to make Carolyn Friedlander's Rin pattern.

I have really been enjoying needle-turned applique since being introduced to the technique at a guild meeting.

It took me awhile (and several practice attempts) to get the fabric folded properly to begin auditioning templates for my block.

Once cut out, I pin basted and then thread basted. I've taken Carolyn's needle-turned applique class on Creative Bug and am following her technique of basting 1/4'' from the edge.

I am going to start to applique around the easy outer edges of each circle first before tackling the bumps.  (Not sure what to call them!)

I don't know if I'll make one block or a whole quilts worth but I will be using fabric from Moda Desert Bloom line by Sherri from A Quilting Life.

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

100 Days 100 Blocks - the first 10

Have you joined into the Instagram QAL to make 100 blocks in 100 days?

Angie runs great high energy QALs.  For this one, the challenge in keeping organized and remembering to IG a specific block on a specific day for 100 days.  (Block 100 is on August 14!) 

My plan is to make the blocks in batches and tack a number to each block with a binding clip.  Fingers crossed that I can make this work!

Here are blocks 1 through 10.  Had some opportunity for fussy cutting and just loving those little elephants.

For my project, I am using this FQ bundle of Pastel Pop by Michael Miller which was sitting in my stash. 

Read more about the QAL here and follow along on Instagram with #100Days100Blocks2017.  You can find the 100 Modern Quilt Blocks book on Amazon.
Photo credit to Angie

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Monday, May 15, 2017

My Our Land Quilt is finished

The Clothworks blog The Works published a series of nine quilt blocks as part of the Our Land QAL in late 2016. I used my American Made Brand Solids (of course!) to make my quilt after first downsizing the blocks from 12'' finished to 6''.

Ta da!

I had a blast with the FMQing.  I did a feather-like leave thing on much of the blue background.

The sunflower and the corn got some pebbles.

I did some straight lines on the cactus.

Each of these blocks were fun to create and it was fun and challenging to figure out how to FMQ them.

I don't have a name for this quilt yet but it linked up with  Freemotion by the River,   WIP Wednesday's,  Let's Bee SocialMidweek Makers.  Needle and Thread Thursdays, Finish it Up Friday and Finished or Not Friday.

Thanks American Made Brand Solids!

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Quilting and Being a Mom

I am lucky.

I have three great children - all adults from the ages of 18 to 23.  Most days, it is hard to believe that so much time has past from when we were at the stage where teeth were missing, they had band-aids on their knees and insisted on a daily menu of mac & cheese.

My favorite quilts are the ones I've made for my kids.  And while none of these awesome people I call my children are interested in making quilts, they all enthusiastically appreciate the quilts I make. (My middle one is even  quick to give my clothing a once over and point out if I've got threads all over my clothing before we go out of the house.)

When I started to quilt obsessively 12-ish years ago, some of the first quilts I made were for their beds.  (Now don't laugh, but I never added binding to any of these three quilts.  My LAQ would serge the edges and I moved on.  The quilts were abused but lasted anyway!)

These photos are circa 2006.

Time passed and my skills as a quilter got better.

In 2011, I celebrated my son's freshman year in college and his interest in math with the quilt Infinite.

The following year, I celebrated his internship in Seattle and proved he doesn't pay attention to what I am sewing when I worked on this quilt, quilting and all, in the same room where he was busy gaming for many days leading up to Christmas one year.  

My quilt Numbers was made this year in celebration of his first every apartment and I love that it is hanging on a wall visible when we Skype.

For my middle one, I made this Irish chain quilt to celebrate her love of Celtic music. She loves to sleep under it every night.

And then made her Awesome because I wanted her to wake up everyday knowing how I feel about her.

Last summer, my youngest got one of my all time favorite quilts to celebrate her interest in writing as she packed her bags for college.

But back in 2012, I won the best mom ever award when my daughter found this Tardis quilt under the Christmas tree.

There are more quilts I could share but I think you get the point!

I'll leave you with my best wishes for a wonderful Mother's Day and my favorite comic!


Happy Mother's Day!

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Turnstyle Block - Block Tutorial

One of the first blocks I fell in love with was the basic pinwheel block.  I remember making a small quilt as a gift for a friend with some very colorful fabric.

Today I wanted to share a twist on the basic pinwheel block with a tutorial on the Turnstyle block.  I'll be using this block as part of an upcoming quilt so I figured out the math options and decided to share!

Here are three different colorways of the same block.

Let's see how to make block 1's coloring -

The table below has the cutting dimensions dependent on the overall finished block size required for your quilt.  For each block, cut one (1) of pieces A & B and two (2) pieces of C.

Pieces A and B need to be cut into four equal sized triangles.

Piece C needs to be cut into two equal sized triangles

Sew piece A to B.  Press seam to darker fabric.  Sew unit AB to piece C

Make four units for each block.

Trim the dog-ears and as needed to the required unit size (see table below).

Changing the coloring of the block creates some new interesting patterns in final quilt.

Aren't these fun?

I'll be linkup up here.

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Monday, May 8, 2017

Slow Stitch Projects

The back porch on a summer afternoon, movie nights, airplane travel, beach vacations and the end of a long day.

What do these things have in common?

They are perfect times to sit and relax with a bit of slow stitching.  (For full disclosure, it depends on the movie.  Movies that involve lots of action scenes with things blowing up are perfect because I don't really like watching those bits!) 

I finished the needle-turned applique for my orange peel project. Fabric is Painter's Canvas from Michael Miller.

This might become a pillow or maybe a wall hanging, not sure yet.  I want the project to sit for a bit to make sure I don't want to add some more orange peels.  I like the negative space and the asymmetrical look. What do you think?

With that project done, I wanted to start something new.  And look what I found!

I love Carolyn's pattern when I first saw it in her newsletter.  Care to take on another project?  You can find more information on Cheryl's blog.  I'm excited to get started.

First step though - what fabric should I use?

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Friday, May 5, 2017

100 Days, 100 Blocks?

I tried to resist but was unable to.

This FQ bundle of Pastel Pop by Michael Miller was sitting in my stash waiting around for the right project.

Angie's tempting emails about joining the 100 day QAL kept arriving in my inbox.  You can find this book on Amazon.
Photo credit to Angie

After some debate, I'm in!

The blocks seem quite straightforward to construct and a friend told me the hardest part is choosing the fabric!

The trick is remember to IG about it every day - every day for 100 days! (That means May 7 through August 14!)  I'll blog about my latest blocks every 10 blocks or so.   My goal is to make the blocks in batches ahead of time.  Here is block 1 - my test block.

There is going to be a lot of yellow in this quilt!

Have a wonderful day! Patty

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

play improv Parade!

I had a blast with the improv QAL called play!  This was a no stress QAL, the opportunity to give improv a try and embrace as many or as few of the weekly prompts as you wanted to.

Folks were encouraged to email me their finished pieces for sharing in the parade - cue the band! I asked everyone what they learned from making an improv quilt.  That is shown in italics below each quilt.

Prepare to be impressed!  I think these are just amazing.

Quilt and photo credit to Anita Simmons-Jackson
The Broken Soldier - created by Anita Simmons-Jackson from West Virginia
By attempting improv style, I learned that much of anything in my scrap basket can be used to create an interesting non-traditional quilt block. By forgetting all the rules, some great art can be created.
You can visit Anita on her blog Domestic Felicity.

Quilt and photo credit to Marianne Perry

Breathe - created by Marianne Perry from Maryland
Making the blocks was easier than putting it all together into a balanced whole piece. 

Quilt and photo credit to Betty Cruikshank

Freestyle Awhile in your Stash-pile and Smile (Freestyle for short)  - created by Betty Cruikshank from Oregon

I have done some improv blocks under more restrictive guidelines.   This time I learned to just go wild and see what happens without the restrictions.  Not to worry if the blocks were too big or small.  Just make them fit by adding some fabric on when putting all the odd sized blocks together.  
You can visit Betty on her blog Sew What Now.

Quilt and photo credit to Melissa Meinhard
Truth and Beauty - created by Melissa Meinhard
I started with the word "beauty" because we seem to find things that are "perfect" and symmetrical beautiful. I figured it was ironic and more difficult than I thought. ........So I made "beauty" and wanted more, so I thought "truth" compliments beauty well. Also the idea of "wonky truth" seems timely with fake news, alternate facts, etc.I wanted to employ more improv so I randomly sewed blues and reds together then cut 1 1/2" strips for a border. I love it and need to employ that border trick to more stuff! 
You can visit Melissa on Instagram as @iluvmybaronie

Quilt and photo credit to Beth Fromica
Still - created by Beth Formica from Ohio
I learned to trust my instincts with this QAL. I learned creativity is on-going throughout a project (and that's a great thing). And I can't wait to start another improv project!
You can visit Beth on her blog EVF Design.

Quilt and photo credit to Diann

Wild Thing - an Improv Sampler - created by Diann from Colorado

This was the most fun sewing experience!  I learned I could sew curves, make letters, and put together an interesting quilt without a pattern.  Thanks for inspiring us, Patty!
You can visit Diann on her blog Little Penguin Quilts or on Instagram as @littlepenguinquilts

Quilt and photo credit to Kristel Carnahan
Created by Kristel Carnahan from Canada
Thanks for running this QAL! It was less scary than I thought it would be - I've always been improv-averse - even when I didn't really love the results. (I need to try this again with a more focused colour palette ... trying to make a good mix of colours using only scraps while also trying to stretch my sewing boundaries was not always super successful.)
You can visit Kristel on her blog Work-In-Progress Girl and on Instagram Clumsy Kristel.

Quilt and photo credit to Danice G

Retro Improv Vibe - created by Danice G from Alabama
What I learned about improv was to let loose of symmetry and planning. Also learned about having many different types of blocks all in one quilt.
You can visit Danice on her blog Homespun Hannah's Blog.

improv quilt

Kindness - created by Patty of North Carolina (that's me!!)

I used American Made Brand solids exclusively.  I really went to town with my quilting.   Basic straight line quilting but some areas I did diagonal lines and in others a irregular grid.

For the binding, I did my best to match the quilt - it didn't take as long as you might think to get this to all line up.

Thanks to every who participated in the play QAL.  I hope you all had as much fun as I did!

And thank you to our wonderful sponsors - Auriful and American Made Brand Solids.   Prizes were awarded to random participants who shared in the Elm Street Quilts Facebook group, in each of the two link-ups and who send their quilt photos to be shared in today's post.

The winners (all of which have been notified by mail or Instagram) are -

Beth, Betty, Danice, Cathy & Anita


I'll be linking up my Kindness quilt with Freemotion by the River,   WIP Wednesday's,  Let's Bee SocialMidweek Makers.  Needle and Thread Thursdays, Finish it Up Friday and Finished or Not Friday.

Have a wonderful day! Patty