“Misty Mountain” Published!

4 08 2019

Have you procured your copy of the July/August issue of Pre-cut Patchwork?

All the quilts patterned in this issue are fabulous, but I am particularly excited about “Misty Mountain,” designed by Michelle Dillon and me. You, too, can make this quilt for nature lovers of your acquaintance; it’s composed of a bear panel (Hoffman of California) and several hundred half square triangles.

The back story of this quilt design: Michelle and I attend our church’s quilting/craft group, and we spear-headed making a wedding quilt for the daughter of a group member. After learning that the bride decorates with neutral gray and white, we scoured Pinterest for simple gray and white quilts. We knew a simple design would entice group members to sew units for the quilt. We pooled gray textures and white tonals from our stashes . . . and then the bride’s mother asked if we could include a bear since black bears are a favorite with her daughter and future son-in-law. Our LQS, Sew There! Quilts and More, stocks naturalistic animal panels and came to our rescue. Our group made the quilt; the bride and groom loved it and carried it to their new home.

Because the quilt was so well received, I decided to pitch the idea to Lori Baker, acquisitions editor for 6 of your favorite quilting magazines. Happily, the quilt was accepted for publication in Pre-cut Patchwork because the half squares can be made with 5″ squares. So then, the quilt had to be re-made! All fabrics for this quilt are from Hoffman of California.

I gave this second bear quilt to my sister-in-law whose backyard is often visited by a curious and hungry bear. She is ecstatic and enjoys showing it to fellow nature lovers who visit her mountain home.


A Finish and a Start

10 05 2019

I have a fabulous finish to show you today – – the 2019 raffle quilt of the Tarheel Quilters Guild. I designed this quilt last fall, shopped for the blue batik fabric at Pineapple Fabrics warehouse sale, cut kits for members, and arranged demos of Wonky Star blocks at a guild meeting. My friend Karlene helped me square up the blocks, and Colleen helped me arrange them on the design wall. Irene and Pat paper pieced the outer border and Kelsey of Grice Farm Quilts employed her amazing machine quilting talents. “Sparkling Pinpoints” was truly a group project, and we are all proud of our queen size quilt!

Let me know how many raffle quilt tickets you’d like to purchase. The drawing will be at the guild’s annual Christmas party in December.

And since I finished two projects recently, I authorized myself to begin a new quilt. Here’s a picture of the fabrics, but I can’t divulge the quilt design. You will just have to wait for the Christmas holiday issue of Quiltmaker magazine! The fabrics are from Benartex:  Jubilee and Jubilee Holiday by Amanda Murphy.

“Pathways” Published

25 04 2019

In the May/June issue of McCall’s Quilting you will find an interesting feature article, “Heirloom Remakes:  Family Quilts Reimagined.” You will enjoy seeing three vintage quilts, reading about their makers, and perusing patterns for three current spin-offs of the vintage designs.

For this feature article, I submitted a “Grandmother’s Fan” quilt that was pieced by my paternal grandmother and hand quilted by both my grandmothers and me (at age 16). This quilt is one of my prized possessions since all three of us worked to complete it.

My modern remake was based on the “Candy Ring” block printed in the May/June 2014 issue of McCall’s Quilting magazine. Instead of arranging four fans in a circle as the pattern suggested, I tried various arrangements, settling on a serpentine medallion with fans in the corners.

Along with my fan quilt, you will see Bev Getschel’s “Family Tree” and Connie Kauffman’s “Baby Blue Baskets.” Their heritage stories and remakes are equally interesting.

I would love to send each of you a copy of this magazine, but I only have one copy to give away. To be in the drawing, leave a comment telling about your most treasured quilt. The drawing will be May 1st.

Charming Baby Girl Quilt

5 04 2019

Raise your hand if you have a partial package of 5″ charm squares. Totally coordinated, but difficult to match with stash fabric, and certainly not enough to make a small quilt. This was my dilemma. I had “For You” charms left over from another project. (Click here to see portions of that quilt top.)

Blogger Katy came to my rescue when she posted pictures of a baby quilt she made for a Habitat for Humanity auction. Click here to see her quilt. The discerning among you will point out that my design is not exactly like Katy’s, but her quilt was my inspiration.

By adding white 5″ x 9 1/2″ rectangles and 5″ squares, I was able to stretch my partial charm pack into a fun quilt for a baby girl. In my stash I found a perky bird print in just the right colors to back the quilt. I added interest to all the “negative space” (white areas) by quilting a “Modern Squares” pantograph in light pink thread. A whimsical bright pink fabric for binding finishes the quilt perfectly.

What ideas do you have for using partial packages of pre-cuts? Please share your tips in a comment below.

“Around the Corner” Published!

30 03 2019

Have you seen the March/April issue of Pre-cut Patchwork magazine? It includes so many fun projects which can be quickly constructed because half the cutting has already been done for you. That’s the beauty of using pre-cuts like 5″ squares, 2 1/2″ wide strips, and 10″ squares.

My quilt, “Around the Corner,” is pictured on page 10. The pre-cuts I used were a package of 5″ squares and a roll of 2 1/2″ strips from the “Dot Crazy” line by Benartex. The overall design includes popular fabric elements:  bright textured prints, a fun gray print for alternate squares, and black and white check for patchwork, setting triangles and inner border.

I first placed the 5″ squares on my design wall, spreading colors and textures evenly throughout. Taking a picture of the arrangement at this juncture was crucial in keeping the blocks in order.

After I made the blocks, I joined them in diagonal rows alternating with squiggly gray print squares, beginning and ending each row with a black and white check triangle. I added a narrow flange of red print between the inner border of black and white check and the outer green print border.

Here’s a tip that will make your longarm quilter happy:  hand or machine baste the edge of the flange so that the machine’s hopping foot won’t be caught under the flap. Zoom in to see my basting with blue thread. The basting can be easily removed with a seam ripper after the quilting is complete.

This was a quick and easy quilt to make and looks quite perky on the back of my maroon sofa. The intense colors brighten my living room considerably. If you need a gift for a graduate or bride, consider making “Around the Corner.” I’d love to see your rendition of the design.

The editors graciously sent me several copies of the March/April issue of Pre-cut Patchwork to offer blog readers. Please comment below to be entered into the drawing on April 5. In your comment, tell me your favorite pre-cut: 2 1/2″ strips, 5″ squares, 10″ squares, fat quarters. Remember that I often reward the comment I find humorous or interesting!

“Flying Geese” Special Exhibit

13 03 2019

February 27 – March 2 saw the unveiling of the “Flying Geese” quilts made by The American Samplers at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival in Hampton, Virginia.

Two years ago, Lynne and Dwanna organized an exchange of 2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ Flying Geese blocks make with bright fabrics and Kona “Snow” for the background. The thirteen of us in the exchange each made 640 blocks, 4 of each fabric. (I contacted the Mancuso Quilt Festival special exhibit coordinator and explained our wish to display our quilts in 2019; we were accepted.) One year ago, we exchanged the blocks and began scouring Pinterest and quilt magazines for design ideas. We decided to keep our designs secret from one another. The secrecy made the unveiling this year at our retreat so much more exciting!

I drew inspiration from Linda Collins’ quilt made with Civil War reproduction fabrics, a picture of which I found on Pinterest. I separated my blocks into warm colors (red, orange, yellow) and cool colors (purple, blue, and green). In “Migration,” the warm colored geese are flying northwest to a cooler climate in the summertime, and the cool colored geese are flying southeast in the wintertime.

Ironically, Kathy was inspired by the same quilt. She made “Going Home” as a reference to her many journeys to Washington, her state of origin. Isn’t is interesting how different our quilts are although inspired by the same quilt design?

Pam made “Geese on the Farm,” inspired by the Canadian Geese that make migratory stops near her home in Maryland. In her write-up, Pam expressed thankfulness for her friends and family that flock together to help each other in the journey of life.

Lori made “Flying Geese Out the Ying Yang.” Granted, 640 is a lot of geese blocks to exchange! The black and white triangles reminded Lori of the Asian Yin and Yang symbol for balance. The quilt design reminds her to work at balancing all the changes and challenges in her life right now.

Alicia, the octogenarian in our group, loves birding and bird fabric. Zoom in to see the bird prints she fussy cut for the centers of each block, and note the goose square near the center. Alicia was inspired to make “Wild Geese and Water Birds” by a block designed by Bonnie K. Hunter for Quiltmaker magazine.

Patti arranged her geese in color families. “Flying Colors” is the perfect name for her quilt. Zoom in to see the awesome quilting designs executed by Lori.

Linda’s quilt, “Flying Geese, Fly Away,” is so much fun! Some viewers see houses, others see pencils. What does her design remind you of?

Trace the flight path of Dwanna’s geese with your finger. Isn’t her spiral ingenious? Dwanna calls her quilt “Friendly Flock.”

I am partial to Marie’s quilt, “Geese, Geese, and More Geese,” because I love the bright royal blue sashing.

Diane, bless her heart, used all 640 geese exchange blocks plus 6 more to make her color saturated quilt. It’s like a waterfall of color! “Birds of a Feather Flock Together.”

Do you have a favorite, or do you love them all? I was so proud of our group; our exhibit certainly provided a feast for the eyes of show attendees!


Blog Readers Share

25 02 2019

Your fellow blog readers have been just as busy have you have, creating lovely quilted projects!

Linda G. loves to make bags; in fact, she’s agreed to teach her favorite designs at a shop near Ramstein Germany.

Helga completed two Nine Patch quilts. I believe both are from the book Nine Patch Revolution:  20 Modern Quilt Projects by Jennifer Dick and Angela Walters.


Mary Ed followed my daughter Trinity’s instructions for making a quick and easy baby quilt. (Check out the Patterns page of this blog if you’d like to make one, too.)

Stephanie is working on two Americana string-pieced projects.


Thanks for sharing, ladies. You have inspired us!