“Eye Spy” Finish

27 03 2017

“Eye Spy with my little eye . . .”

I raided my box of 3″ squares and cut more from conversation prints for the centers of the patchwork blocks. Frames of primary colors were cut 2″ wide, and I cut 2″ corner squares of black and white polka dot fabric. I decided to extend the Nine Patch secondary design in the borders. (The math actually works out for 3″ finished squares in the outer border, but I forgot and cut 3″ squares as I did for the interior blocks. Extra points if you can figure out how I coped with my “Ooops.”)

While looking in JoAnn’s for sashing, I ran into a quilting friend from my guild. She propelled me toward a white with colorful triangles print instead of the white and gray print I was considering. I am pleased with the fun-loving results. Most of the squares in the interior of the quilt have a “twin” in the outer border so the recipient of this quilt has had fun matching the monkey, cat, cowboy boots, construction equipment, etc.

I quilted the quilt with white thread in a meander and loop, freehand design. And I bound the quilt with black Kona cotton.

Have you made an “Eye Spy” quilt? What was the most interesting conversation print you included?


First Quarter Challenge – Yet More Inspiration

30 03 2017

This year I’m making a concerted effort to use some of my pre-cuts, and I’ve challenged blog readers to do the same. If you’ve been following along from January through March, you’ve seen creative ways to use Fat Quarters and/or Quilter’s Candy.

Ilse sent a picture of a modern mini quilt using Brigitte Heitland’s Zen Chic collection. She wrote, “At the 2015 Nürtingen (Germany quilt) exhibition, all helping hands received a Quilter’s Candy pack from one of Brigitte’s many quilt fabric series, with the request to transform them into something special to exhibit at the upcoming 2018 show.”

The simplicity of Ilse’s quilt spells sophistication, don’t you think? I love the wavy quilting lines–close together where the colored squares are densest and farther apart toward the edges of the quilt where the squares are farther apart.

It will be so interesting to see all the quilts made with Quilter’s Candy in next year’s exhibition. (Be sure to send pictures, Ilse!)


Several other blog followers were inspired by recent posts. Darla sent a picture of a “Holly Hobby” placemat made by her sister, Anna. My post on the vintage “Little Dutch Girls” quilt reminded her of the placemat made years ago. I love the sweet embroidered flowers on the bonnet and sleeve cuff.

Helga contributed a picture of her “Sternen und Herzen” I Spy quilt in response to my question on the “Eye Spy” post. The quilt is about ten years old and remains at Helga’s house. All the grandchildren and young visitors can enjoy looking at it when they visit her.

Stephanie, inspired by the Polka Tot post, shared a picture of a patriotic quilt she made for Army Chaplain Sam Boone. She increased the block size to 9″ and used scraps and fat quarters from stash. Bowties are Chaplain Boone’s trademark, so this Quilt of Valor design suits him to a T.

With the first quarter of 2017 behind us, it’s time to look ahead to the second quarter’s challenge. Your role is to roll up your sleeves, unroll your jelly roll, and get the ball rolling on a new quilt!



Aided and Abetted

5 08 2015

During the month of July, on Tuesdays, I taught a quilt design class for children. They each designed a placemat AND they helped design three baby quilts. Prior to teaching the class, my stated goal was one baby quilt, but their design excitement exceeded my expectations.


Random Squares, Chinese Coins, Simple Pinwheel

 Some specifics on each of the quilts pictured above:

Random Squares is made with 80  5″ squares. Some were from charm packs, and some were from my bin of scrap 5″ squares. We planned to donate the quilt to the NICU, but then I noticed that some of the fabric contained metallic embellishment. Metallics attract and retain heat and might burn a baby’s tender skin. So perhaps the Ft. Bragg Fisher House can use this “I Spy” quilt since the NICU cannot.

Chinese Coins is made with 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ bricks from by scrap brick bin. There are four columns with 15 bricks each. One yard of green tonal fabric was enough for sashing and borders. The quilt measures 37″ x 40.” Again I noticed that the children favored sparkly fabric, so we’ll have to find an alternate charity for donation.

A link to Simple Pinwheel’s instructions is found on the Patterns page of this blog. This baby size quilt is fat quarter friendly; you can make 4 Pinwheels from a fat quarter and use the remainder for binding strips. All strips are cut 2 1/2″ wide. You will need a yard of light background fabric and a half a yard print for the outer border. When making a Pinwheel quilt, I generally mix the prints throughout the quilt as shown in the photo below.


But I noticed that the children made rows of all one color/fabric.

PWOC Baby quilt

Hmmm, if kids find this arrangement attractive, why not make our quilt with rows of the same color of Pinwheel?! I think the finished quilt is super eye-catching thanks to the junior quilt designers, Oh, yes, I was aided and abetted in making baby quilts for charity this summer!

Playmat for Aidan

26 04 2014

While cruising the equilter.com website for flip-flop fabric, I succumbed to the temptation to buy a “For Boys” bundle of bolt-end fabrics. Because it was on sale. Have you ever done that?  You go shopping for one item and find a couple more to add to the shopping cart.

It was fun to see what the bundle contained; I estimate the total amount was between 2 and 3 yards. I was especially happy to receive a panel with a road and outdoor vacation attractions. My little grandson, Aidan, loves to roll his trucks and cars along the floor. Won’t he have fun rolling them along the road of this panel?


As is often the case with panels, the large motif was not printed exactly “square.” I trimmed the yardage into a rectangle and then added 2 1/2″ red borders.


To make the quilt reversible, I constructed an “I Spy” quilt of 3 1/2″ and 6 1/2″ novelty print squares. I added a 6″ black border to make the “I Spy” quilt back larger than the front panel. Most of this black frame will be trimmed away after quilting.


Fortunately, I had enough cogs and gears left over from another quilt to make most of the alternate blocks. Most of the novelty prints were included in “Four Patches.”


Some of the larger prints received an “elbow” of color, bringing them up to the 6 1/2″ size.


Here’s the finished “road map” side of the quilt. The black and white stripe binding fabric echoes the printed “border” of the quilt’s interior.

Aidan's Road map

The reverse side of the quilt is ready for a game of “I Spy with My Little Eye.”

Aidan's I Spy

Thanks for reading my blog today! Remember to be here on Monday, April 28 for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks from Today’s Top Designers, Vol. 9 blog tour. You will see my block and quilt that are printed in the magazine and you can register for prizes.