March Client Quilts

I quilted two quilts for Debbie, my co-worker at the quilt shop. She does such beautiful work. I'd like to take photos of her quilt tops from the wrong side, the piecing is always so perfect. She made this cute baby quilt and she used her embroidery machine to personalize it in honor of the baby's birth. It's amazing how great the navy blue looks in this quilt, such a non-traditional baby color.

I also quilted this koala quilt for Debbie. She used all fabrics from the shop so it might hang as a sample there for a while. The pattern is from Elizabeth Hartman and Debbie used Michael Miller's Coco fabric collection to make the koalas. I quilted it using a leaf pattern since the koalas were hanging onto tree trunks. This is such a happy quilt, I think I need to make one for myself.


Bear Paw on Point Quilt

I started this quilt at the once-a-month sew day with my Basement Quilters group back in February. Usually when I start a project at a sew day I finish the project there. That means I will end up working on the same project for quite a few months. However, I don't have a lot of other things going on lately. So I finished the quilt top at home.

I quilted it using a pantograph with lots of swirls. It complemented the bear paw points nicely and filled in the white background blocks. 

The quilt pattern used a jelly roll where you sort the light strips from the dark strips to make blocks that have lots of contrast. Sometimes I find that the line between dark and light gets a little blurry when the medium color strips are used. I think I need a color theory class! At least the jelly roll takes away some guesswork.

Jack's Northern Star

I dug out a fabric bundle I purchased a few years ago to make a baby quilt. I am not sure why I wanted to make a baby quilt - I see no new babies in my future. I think I just needed a project that didn't take too long. The fresh colors are also nice to be around in the middle of winter. Ugh!

I used a pattern called Jack's Northern Star found in the book Baby Takes Five by Creekside Stitches. I bought the book at Creekside Stitches Quilt Shop last year. It's nice to support Wisconsin artists. 

The quilt went together quickly but then it sat since I couldn't decide on backing. It was tough to find the right color and I really wanted to finish it from my stash. About a month after I made the top, I was organizing my sewing room and I came across some yardage in a cute bunny print. It wasn't quite big enough but I did some creative sewing to make it work.

I quilted it with a simple pantograph called Loophole that compliments the star blocks nicely. 

It's a cute baby quilt that's a decent size so it should be usable well past toddlerhood. 


Flying Leap Quilt a.k.a. The Lock Down Quilt

I've been working on this quilt on and off for over a year now. The pattern is called Flying Leap. I purchased the pattern at Blue Bar Quilt when I went on a shop hop bus trip with a church group back in October 2019. I instantly started making the blocks. OK...a block. I got one done and I set it aside. 

Why is it so hard to pick up a project after setting it down? I think part of the answer is that this one is made from scraps and scraps are messy. I generally don't like messy.

I've picked up this project multiple times but never could seem to finish it. Then winter came and after almost a year of living through a pandemic I decided it's time to finish it. I certainly have plenty of time. Especially since my husband tested positive and I had to quarantine for 14 days. What a perfect time to finish a project. So I am officially renaming this quilt from Flying Leap to Lock Down. Ha! 

During the 14-day quarantine I got all the blocks done. Once quarantine ended, we got a brutal snowstorm so I felt like I was back in lockdown. The quilt shop where I work closed and I had another long stretch of nowhere to go. I sewed all the blocks together and finished the quilt top. 

I spent a week completing the quilting. I did all ruler work and free motion quilting. The ruler work took a lot of time as I wanted each section of the quilt to look different from its neighbor. It was a lot of fun. It was only my second attempt at ruler work and I found myself buying a book with quilting designs in it to help me figure out what to do. It is a great book-I'm sure I will use it often.

I used Grunge on the back and as the binding so as to not take anything away from the colorful blocks or the quilting. I think the back looks awesome.

Today I stitched on the binding and am so very happy to call this quilt finished. 

Lock Down Quilt


Star Wars Mandalorian Pillow Cases

I just had to get in on the Mandalorian craze. We got the Star Wars Mandalorian fabric line in the shop on a Thursday and by the following Tuesday two of the bolts were close to empty. So I purchased some of the fabric for myself. 

I whipped up these two pillowcases using the burrito method. The only issue I had is that I had to get a little extra fabric because it's directional. I wanted the print to go a certain way so I had to cut it opposite of how the instructions said. 

So there's some leftover fabric now. I think some more zipper pouches are in my future. 


My New Sewing Table

Last March my husband and I went on a Vintage Shop Hop. It included shops that sell vintage, antique, repurposed, and flea market items. The shops were located throughout Wisconsin and Illinois so there was no way to visit them all so we chose to head north. We picked up so many cool finds and one of them was an old Singer pedal operated sewing machine base. It is made from iron and extremely sturdy. 

For my birthday, my husband cleaned the base up and added a wood top. The top is beautiful. It now sits in my sewing studio with my new embroidery machine on top of it. 

It's a perfect addition to the room and when the machine is running, it's so sturdy that it is a perfect place for the machine. I appreciate my husband's handy work more than he knows.


Vintage Christmas Quilt

This month I had the pleasure of quilting a Lori Holt Vintage Christmas sampler quilt. I wish I could say this was my quilt. It was really hard for me to choose a quilting design, I wanted it to be perfect. 

I finally chose a pantograph called Twinkle, I thought it was a perfect complement to the quilt blocks. I used a grey variegated thread on the top and a green that matched the backing perfectly. I need to make this quilt for myself, I love it that much.
Urban Elementz

This quilt will be on display at the quilt shop where I work later this year.


Pencil Cases

I'm starting to get used to my new embroidery machine. This week I made some pencil cases using some new embroidery files I ordered online. I had two different bundles of teacher-themed fabrics so I decided to make some pencil cases using a little of the fabrics in the bundles. Thanks to ZipIt, the Etsy store that sells zippers cheap, I have plenty of zippers on hand so I can easily find one to match most projects. 

I didn't really follow any specific pattern or tutorial to make these pouches. I did look at the finished sizes of a few sewing blogs that had online tutorials and I settled on a finished size of 9" x 5". Here are the two I made. 

I discovered that I like the look of the embroidery on linen. Luckily, I have 10 yards of this good stuff. I washed it along with 10 yards of muslin to use as stabilizer on the back.

My granddaughters will give the pouches to their teachers during teacher appreciation week in April. I hope it is easy for the to decide who gets what.


Small Projects

I've had this small Chalk Couture project for a few months and I completed it today. My husband made me some shelves for over my coffee station. The shelves are made from wood we had milled from trees on our land up in Marinette County so they are special to us. The shelves are sitting on pipe fixtures, just like some I found on Pinterest. Once he put up the shelves I was excited to make the Chalk Couture project. 

Here's what it looks like on the "coffee wall" shelf. 

I still have some decorating to do to make it look like I want it, so my next step is to get some greenery for color.

Once I finished the chalk project, I dug out some vinyl I've had for a while. I made up this project bag to take to my quilting group. I quilted the back patchwork panel, added a zipper and vinyl window to the front and sewed on binding. It was so quick and easy. I plan on making more in different sizes as teacher gifts for teacher appreciation week which is in April.


Quilts for Kids Finished Quilts

The snow keeps piling up; there's now 22 inches on the ground. The piles are so high, you can't see over the top of them. To make things worse, the average daytime temperature is 6 degrees so it's not fun to go outside and play in it. While we're hunkered down, I did finish two charity quilts. I had these two in my stack of finished quilt tops since last year. It felt good to put them in the washer once they were finished. I seemed like a good idea to photograph them on top of the piles of snow.

My 10 year old granddaughter did some of the quilting on the minion quilt. She had a good time working the longarmer. I hope she wants to do it some more.

This quilt pattern is called Perfect 10. I used fat quarters I got from a friend who didn't want them anymore. I promised her I would use the fabric for Quilts for Kids so I finished the quilt top in October. I just never took the time to quilt it. I don't know why.


Quick Weekend Projects

This weekend I downloaded an apron pattern off the internet. The pattern had 17 pages and it went together a little like a jigsaw puzzle. It was quite fun to do. Last month I had embroidered a kitchen design and I really wanted to make an apron so I can sew the embroidered piece on as a pocket. 

I cut the pattern out as well as the fabric and in less than 2 hours, I had finished it. I used some really nice linen fabric and I washed it before using it. The pattern was as simple as sewing a few seams, turning and pressing, then hemming and topstitching. Here is the finished apron:

Since I finished the apron so quickly I put a charity quilt on the longarmer. The quilt top was made by some of the ladies from my Sweet Sundays sewing group. I decided to free motion quilt it so since I wasn't following a pantograph I quilted the whole thing in 45 minutes. Another fast finish. Yay!


Farmhouse Pillow Covers

I made some pillow covers to decorate the bench in my kitchen. I used my embroidery machine to embroider on some white linen. I used a nice farmhouse plaid to frame the embroidered pieces. I really like the look.


Snow Day

We had a heavy snowfall yesterday which was the first in a while. So far, there's been little snow to report which is unusual for Wisconsin. We even had local news reporters in the neighborhood this morning to do interviews on the snow between traffic reports.  Here's what it looks like out my bedroom window.

Normally I would mention how nice it is to be snowed in, however my husband tested positive for covid-19 last week so we are under quarantine which means I've been stuck at home even before the snowfall.  

It all makes for a good reason to work on a quilt project. In a effort to finish an old project, I took out a quilt I started in fall of 2019 called Flying Leap. Here it is in sections on the design board. 

 I wonder if I can finish the whole quilt top by the end of the day. I'm sure going to try!


Coffee Tea Towel

I finally figured out what to do with the first embroidery piece I made with my new machine - a tea towel! I washed up some blank tea towels last week and today I cut some 2 and a half inch squares of coffee themed coordinating prints. I sewed the squares together and stitched them onto the towel 3 and a half inches up from the bottom of the towel. I cut the embroidery piece down to fit in the center and used a sating stitch to attach it to the towel. I do like how it turned out.


A Thank You and Scones

I got a lovely thank you note for the completed holiday projects I made a month or so ago. It sure made my day. She was nice enough to send along some buttons she thought I could use. They are so cute I am sure I will find a way to incorporate them into future projects.

I tried a new scone recipe. They are called Coconut Cream Scones and the recipe can be found here. They are really good. The one thing I try to do when making a new recipe is to follow it exactly. I believe you can't complain about how bad a recipe is if you didn't follow it, hahaha. Well, this recipe was wonderful except that next time I will divide the dough into two balls then slice them up into scones. These were way too large.