So Many Books Part 12!

I love quilting, and more of my sewing has gone to quilting lately than other categories, but last Thursday while buying a quilting ruler in a size I didn’t have yet, I also bought a piece of fabric that was soft and what I thought would make a wonderful autumn-season long sleeve shirt. sunflower So Many Books Part 12! My cat has claimed that piece of fabric as her new bed on my cutting table and I’m not sure I’m ever getting it back. If you have pets, I’d be curious to know if they claim certain items in your stash for themselves like mine does. Either way, it’s possible this picture of the completely unexpected sunflower that has grown in my patio area in between two stands of what will eventually become cattails will inspire you toward the autumn quilting season in browns and yellows.

If you’d like a chance to win some quilting books, keep reading. If you’d also like a chance to win some fabric (the top piece is yellow since I was inspired by the sunflowers), Moda Mixologie layer cake 300x192 So Many Books Part 12! then please take the Quilters Newsletter August/September 2015 Editorial Survey. Respondents who complete the survey will be entered to win a bundle of 10″ squares from the Mixologie collection by Studio M from Moda. Just be sure to come back to this post and also enter for your chance to win one of the 3 book prizes below once you’re finished.

So May Books Part 12 Prize 1 So Many Books Part 12!Prize 1 includes 8-Pointed & Feathered Stars by Gail Searl from Love to Quilt; Sew Stars! by Gail Searl from Love to Quilt; Starry Nights! from Gail Searl from Love to Quilt; and Hexagons, Diamonds, Triangles, and More by Kelly Ashton from That Patchwork Place.

So May Books Part 12 Prize 2 So Many Books Part 12!Prize 2 includes 99 Continuous Line Quilting Designs by Lone Jacobsen Minkkinen from American Quilter’s Society; Borders Assembly & Binding by Kent Mick from American Quilter’s Society; No-Mark Quilting Designs by Nan Moore from Love to Quilt; and Quilting Designs for Sashing, Blocks & Borders by Helen Squire from Love to Quilt.

So May Books Part 12 Prize 3 So Many Books Part 12!Prize 3 includes Quilted Artwork Frames by Sherry Fourez from Love to Quilt; Patchwork Plus: Easy One-Block Quilts with Seasonal Applique by Geralyn J. Powers from That Patchwork Place; Simple Super One-Patch Quilts by Pat Yamin from Love to Quilt; and Terrific Two-Block Quilts by Sally Saulmon from Love to Quilt.

To enter for your chance to be one of the 3 lucky winners, leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm Mountain Time, Monday September 7, 2015 telling us about a quilting book or pattern that has inspired you. If you have a preference between the prizes, let us know that in your comment as well. Since winners are randomly selected, we don’t guarantee you’ll win your preferred prize if chosen, but we’ll do our best! Open to anyone worldwide who has not won anything from Quilters Newsletter in the past 90 days. If you are randomly selected as a winner, the email will come from QNMquestions@fwmedia.com with “Quilters Newsletter blog giveaway” in the subject line.

To find out about more giveaways, quilting news, tips, techniques and to see all the beautiful quilts we like to share, join us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube and our website. Plus, see Web Seminars on  QuiltAndSewShop.com and classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Caitlin, Contests | Tagged , , , , , , | 42 Comments

Naming the “Baby”

I finished a quilt this weekend and I have to tell you the toughest part of the finishing process was coming up with a name.

0071 Naming the Baby

This is the front of the quilt.

But before I tell you about finding the right name, let me tell you a little about the quilt. The center with the pinwheel, nine patch and rail fence blocks was in my stack of PIGS (Projects in Grocery Sacks). Then I added the borders – there are 3 blue borders and 2 made with half-square triangles. All the half-square triangles were also in my PIGS pile. You can read more about it here. That was in September, about a year ago.

Then late in October, I talked about the back of the quilt. I used two PIGS and a whole handful of scraps on that part of the quilt.

011 Naming the Baby

The Pieced Back

Then life and other deadlines interfered. The parts to this quilt – all ready to be quilted – got put away. A few weeks ago, I decided all the quilt tops in my PIGS were weighing me down. They were taking up brain space. I couldn’t move on to the next project until some of what I started got completed.

So I sent my quilt to Crystal Zagnoli of The Quilted Cricket for machine quilting. Crystal has quilted quilts for Quilters Newsletter and for our sister publications so I knew I’d like her work. I got my quilt back on Friday and I’m delighted with the quilting.

0081 Naming the Baby

Close-up of the Quilting

0091 Naming the Baby

The Quilting in the Border

I took it home and said to Bake (my husband) that I really wanted to finish it and it would only take an hour or so because all I had to do is put the label on and bind it.

Sunday after lunch, I cut and pressed the binding. I stitched it to the quilt. I spread the quilt on the table so I could see the whole thing and tried to think of a name. I popped some popcorn and tried to think of a name. I started a load of laundry and tried to think of a name. I asked Bake to help me think of a name. I googled “sunshine” and “blue skies.” Nothing. I watered the flowers on the patio. Still nothing. I vacuumed the living room. I unloaded the dishwasher. Finally … finally, Bake said how about Blueberry Banana Shake. And that was a keeper. The quilt had a name. I embroidered the label, attached it and stitched the second row of stitching on the binding.

015 Naming the Baby

Finally, the Label

It was done but it had taken me all afternoon. Sometimes the name comes to me as I’m constructing the quilt top. It’s better when that happens.

On another subject, 300 Words about Quilting is a regular feature in Quilters Newsletter. If you’d like to send us an essay, email QNMsubmissions@fwmedia.com with a story of 300 words or less about one of our upcoming topics. The current topic is Quilts and Music or Movies and the deadline has been extended to September 15. It’s a fun way to share one of your quilting stories.

I also wanted to tell you about the great sale going on at QuiltandSewShop.com. Right now they have quite a few kits, books, patterns and even fabric reduced by up to 60%. Check it out; there are lots of things to choose from.

Remember to visit Quilters Newsletter on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Google+ and our website for the latest news, quilting fun and ideas. In addition to Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com, there are classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Inspiration, Lori Baker, Staff Quilts | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Scrap bag: Wartime embroidery, TV-inspired quilt and more

Once again, this week’s scrap bag blog post is full of quilty odds and ends that were too good to discard (or delete), as well some stories about other textile arts that anyone who sews can appreciate. Let’s dig into it, shall we, to see what we can find? (Click on the links to read the full stories and see pictures.)

sewing with scraps 2 849x1024 Scrap bag: Wartime embroidery, TV inspired quilt and more

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I’ve only seen a few episodes here and there of the long-running BBC show “EastEnders,” but I know it’s enormously popular in Britain and has many loyal fans. One of them is 23-year-old art student Deborah Lobban, who made an appliqued quilt as a tribute to her favorite show as well as a statement about quilts themselves. “I like making quilts that are meant to last forever about storylines that are sometimes forgotten within a few weeks.”
www.mirror.co.uk

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From the Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog come two fascinating stories. The first, “Embroidery under fire,” tells the story and shows pictures of embroideries created by French women during World War I that depicted what they were seeing and experiencing at the time.

The second, “The delicate ‘war laces’ of World War I,” describes how President and Mrs. Hoover helped preserve the Belgian tradition of lace making. About 50 examples of Belgian laces are part of the Smithsonian’s collections, and while they’re not currently on display, the blog includes a link to view them online.

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Dharavi is an area of Mumbai, India, sometimes referred to as Asia’s largest slum. Situated on approximately 500 acres in the middle of India’s financial capital, it is home to an estimated 1 million people. In early 2015, the Mumbai-based nonprofit Society for Nutrition, Education & Health Action (SNEHA) held the second Dharavi Biennale, a two-week event that aimed to combine art and science, to highlight the contribution of the local people to India’s economic and cultural life, and to share information on urban health.

kismeti 1 698x1024 Scrap bag: Wartime embroidery, TV inspired quilt and more

Kismeti Jaiswar stands proud in her saree that reads: “I am not an animal but a walking-roaming human.”

In the What’s New section of Quilters Newsletter August/September 2015, we reported on two textile art projects at the Biennale that addressed violence against women: Mapping the Hurt, an 8′ x 5′ collaborative textile piece, and Provoke/Protect, in which local women embroidered and appliqued traditional sarees with words and images to protest rape and gender-based violence. The people at the Biennale shared many more photos of these amazing women with us than we had room for in print, so we added a slideshow to our website. View more photos of the Dharavi Biennale here.

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And while we’re on the subject of Indian textile arts, the Pune Mirror recently ran an article about efforts to preserve traditional Indian quiltmaking techniques as a means to empower local women. Said one, “These days, traditional quilts are not frequently used. We learnt to make it because we were interested in it. Since future generations are not so keen to learn this art, it is a dying form now. Even my daughter was earlier not into making Godhadis. But, now that these are being converted into a brand, she is showing some interest in learning the art form.”
www.punemirror.in

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A nonagenarian recently won best of show at the Western Montana Fair for her state-themed applique quilt. “I didn’t think people would like it that well,” Betty Gauld said. “I liked it, but it isn’t put together with a lot of pieces all matching or anything like that.” We think she’s being too self critical.
ravallirepublic.com

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In Time.com’s regular feature “Money Well Spent,” a woman recently described how the $300 she spent on a Pfaff while stationed in Germany in the early 1980s “is still paying dividends of beauty, love — and warmth.”
time.com/money

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And finally, a business writer used a patchwork metaphor in a positive (and correct) way! Check out #4 on this list of “7 Metaphors to Help Understand Being an Entrepreneur.”
www.entrepreneur.com

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category 16 3876 Scrap bag: Wartime embroidery, TV inspired quilt and more

If you’re looking for a new project for yourself and your own scrap bag is getting low on usable patches, you may want to take a look at the recently marked-down kits available from QuiltAndSewShop.com. Save 20%-60% on select quilt kits and quilt backings while supplies last. You’ll find everything from bed quilts and throw quilts to wall hangings and table runners. Click here to view all the quilt kits currently on sale.

As always, to find out about Quilters Newsletter’s giveaways, quilting news, tips, techniques and more, visit us on FacebookTwitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube,  QNNtv.com and our website. Plus, see Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com and classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Mary Kate Karr-Petras | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Modern Stitching and Altered Blocks

PLEASE NOTE, THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED. THANK YOU TO ALL WHO PARTICIPATED. CONGRATULATIONS ANNE!

As we near the end of August, mornings have been a little cooler around the Quilters Newsletter office. ChristmasSurprises 800 15179 Modern Stitching and Altered BlocksIt’s still getting up into the high 80′s and low 90′s Fahrenheit during the day, but the respite from the heat when we’re arriving at the office is a subtle reminder that autumn is coming. That means we still have plenty of time to start projects for Christmas or other holidays if we haven’t started them already, and plenty of time currently to start making the free foundation paper pieced blocks for this year’s Quilters Newsletter Christmas Quilt Along Pattern, Christmas Surprises by Tina Curran.

There’s also plenty of time to pick up your copy of Quilters Newsletter August/September 2015 if you haven’t already. It’s packed full of useful tips and techniques, beautiful quilt patterns, quilting inspiration, and so much more. Modern Stitching from Red Rooster Fabrics is one of the staff picks fabrics inside the issue, and a bundle of it happens to be the giveaway item this week, hoping to go home to one very lucky winner:Red Rooster Fabrics Modern Stitching Modern Stitching and Altered Blocks

While I was making the block below for the Staff Picks section of the August/September 2015 issue of Quilters Newsletter, I picked a block I thought I was in love with to go with the Modern Stitching fabric collection, and I started making it. Then I realized that if I turned the whole thing on point from how it had originally been designed and added triangles to make the block square again, it would look prettier than finishing the block the way the pattern intended — at least in my opinion. The slight problem with this is that the outside corners of the lovely beige rectangles will be cut off in the seam allowance when I join the block into a bigger piece, which serves as a reminder that when making changes to a block, it’s always best to make those changes and alter the cutting measurements before the block is finished. Either way, I like how it turned out:Modern Stitching Block Modern Stitching and Altered Blocks

To enter for your chance to win the bundle of Modern Stitching, leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm Mountain Time, Sunday August 30, 2015 telling us about a block or pattern you’ve altered to suit your needs. Open to anyone worldwide who has not won anything from Quilters Newsletter in the past 90 days. If you are randomly selected as a winner, the email will come from QNMquestions@fwmedia.com with “Quilters Newsletter blog giveaway” in the subject line.

To find out about more giveaways, quilting news, tips, techniques and to see all the beautiful quilts we like to share, join us on FacebookTwitter, Google+, Pinterest, InstagramYouTube and our website. Plus, see Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com and classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Caitlin, Contests | Tagged , , , , | 187 Comments

Maple Leaf Mulch

I want to show you one of my older quilts. I made it in 2002 for Bake (my husband) and it is still one of our favorite quilts. As is so often the case, the story of this quilt is part of what makes it a favorite.

0033 Maple Leaf Mulch

Maple Leaf Mulch

When my mother-in-law died, she left me all the contents of her sewing room. There were some real treasures in her things. These maple leaf blocks were one of the things I immediately fell in love with. I wanted to do something special for Bake with some of his mom’s things and these blocks seemed to be the perfect starting place.

There were 55 blocks. I think they were made by Bake’s great-aunt Letha. The blocks are so wonderful. I’m not sure of the date on them but they are old. When I got them, I thought they were ‘30s feedsacks but knowing what I know today, I don’t think that is correct. The blocks are hand stitched and finish at 7½”. I don’t see any marking of seam lines but they are absolutely straight and the stitches are ever so tiny.

008 Maple Leaf Mulch

These tiny stitches are so nicely done.

Because the quilt was for Bake, I let him choose the fabrics for the sashing, cornerstones and borders. We used ‘30s reproduction prints because at the time I thought that was the right era to match the blocks. I was so surprised when he chose a pink print for the sashing and inner border and a red print for the cornerstones and outer border. I’ve learned since to trust his color sense. I love these two fabrics together but I never would have selected them.

This was one of my early free-motion quilted bed-size quilts. It’s about 85” square. The thread has a bit of sheen to it so it’s probably polyester. The batt is low loft, I imagine it is cotton.

0061 Maple Leaf Mulch

One of the Blocks

I love the soft crinkly look it has now that it’s been washed and loved a while.

When I’d finished the quilting and was inspecting the back to make sure there weren’t any wrinkles, I saw a brown something. Thinking it was on the outside of the fabric, I scraped at it with my fingernail to get it off and it squished! It was a worm of some kind on the inside between the backing fabric and the batting. Of course, it wasn’t near the edge where I could unsew a few stitches and get it out – so I left it. I tried to clean the spot off the quilt but didn’t have any luck. So, with tongue firmly in cheek, I named the quilt Maple Leaf Mulch. (You’ll be glad to know that after several washings, the spot disappeared.)

One of these days, I’m going to do something with the remaining 30 blocks. I’ll have to decide if I want to make another quilt just like this with sashing and cornerstones or change it up a bit. I regret that I didn’t plan both quilts at once. I may have had some options for color play when I had all 55 blocks that I no longer have.

009 Maple Leaf Mulch

Four of the Remaining Maple Leaf Blocks.

Just in case you are inspired by my maple leaf quilt, I’ve found a few patterns at QuiltandSewShop.com with leaves.

Falling leaves Maple Leaf Mulch

Falling Leaves

Falling Leaves is from Quiltmaker, our sister publication.

 

 

 

 

 

 

batik eBook Maple Leaf Mulch

Easy Batik eBook

This eBook from McCall’s has three quilts made with batiks, one of which is a maple leaf quilt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Turning leaves Maple Leaf Mulch

Turning Leaves

Even though these aren’t maple leaves, I thought this was such a pretty quilt, I had to include it. This pattern is available in printed form or digitally.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mass Maples Maple Leaf Mulch

Mass Maples

And Mass Maples from Quilters Newsletter is one of my favorite maple leave patterns.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be sure to visit Quilters Newsletter on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Google+ and our website for the latest news, quilting fun and ideas. In addition to Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com, there are classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Happy quilting!

Posted in Inspiration, Lori Baker, Staff Quilts, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Weekend Workshop: Machine quilting in the real world

I am friends on Facebook with a number of people from the quilting world I’ve worked with via email but have never met in real life. One of those people is Sherry Reynolds, whose America, Let It Shine was our June/July 2012 cover quilt and went on to win best of show at International Quilt Festival in Houston that fall.

OTC 800 Weekend Workshop: Machine quilting in the real world

America, Let It Shine by Sherry Reynolds

Sherry has received more awards since then, both for America, Let It Shine and other quilts. She is in the process of making what promises to be another showstopper based on the photos she’s posted on Facebook. But the most interesting part to me has been Sherry’s description of her process and the many ups and downs experienced when perfection is the goal. And considering that she quilts on a domestic machine, not a longarm, the work is even more impressive. Well, impressive to those of us not actually doing the work perhaps. I doubt Sherry sees it that way.

Reynolds 1.21.15 1024x768 Weekend Workshop: Machine quilting in the real world

Sherry Reynolds’ domestic sewing machine at work, January 2015

The thing is, Sherry is really, really funny. When she’s in the thick of things and posting daily updates, she takes her Facebook friends on a wildly entertaining ride. After reading her posts for a few months, I asked Sherry if she would allow us to extract some of her status updates for a “quiltmaker’s diary” feature. Luckily for all of us she agreed, and it’s resulted in one of my favorite articles of all the ones I’ve worked on.

Here are some excerpts:

September 24, 2014

I no longer have a quilting room. I just have a “throw scraps everywhere, sit, stare, contemplate and accomplish nothing” room.

 

February 6, 2015

WANTED: someone to come SID [stitch in the ditch] center mariner’s compass. Must be willing to cram and turn 99” x 99” quilt through 9″ throat space 64 times. Must have a vast array of “colorful” language and the ability to use it loudly. Knowledge in rolling office chairs is also helpful but not required. If you do not have the knowledge of how to slide forward while seated and avoid the ironing board leg, you must have bounce skills, i.e., with one foot on the ground and the other wrapped around the chair base, you will bounce 3-4 times, slightly up and down on the chair. On the up you quickly rotate base so it will scooch past ironing board leg; quilt is to remain in your lap during this process. Must provide own forehead shield as the SID work is best done 6”-8″ from needle and injury to forehead from thread-taker-upper-thingy is likely to occur. Diving skills also required, as you will occasionally have to go under the quilt and check tension; quilt is to remain under the needle so as to avoid start/stops. All applicants can apply at Just Shoot Me Now Quilting.

 

February 17, 2015

And here we have the not-so-joyful quilter working on the center. One question I’m asked a lot is, “how do you do the center?” You are at maximum under-the-arm bulk, and it is THE hardest part. No, it’s not a whole lot of fun, but it is doable and it’s not like it lasts forever. Basically, you just muscle your way through. The cramming of the quilt is not difficult, it’s the result of the cramming that makes moving the quilt a challenge – your walking foot is advancing, but alas, the quilt is pretty much sandwiched under the arm and not advancing, thus it is easy to start skewing the fabric. Best thing is to just slow down, take a few stitches, stop, shove the underarm bulk a little ahead and take a few more stitches … constantly muttering “this too shall pass” is also beneficial.

To read the entire feature and perhaps feel a little better about any challenges you may experience in your own machine quilting, be sure to get your copy of the August/September 2015 issue, available both as a print edition and as a digital issue.

This feature coincided with a recent three-part series on machine quilting we did that’s available to watch on QNNtv.com. I refer to the series as “machine quilting in the real world.” It’s one thing to see someone demonstrate machine quilting on a large, beautiful Koala sewing table using a machine with all the bells and whistles, but how does that translate to machine quilting in your own home? Well, I asked, and our in-house experts Lori Baker and Erin Russek answered.

Below are preview videos for each of the three episodes followed by links to QNNtv.com where you can view them in their entirety. (Please note: I did not choose the screen grab below. It’s an interesting one.)

Click here to view part 1, “Domestic Machine Quilting: Arranging Your Space” on QNNtv.com.

Click here to view part 2, “Tips for Feed Dog Driven Quilting” with Lori Baker on QNNtv.com.

Click here to view part 3, “Free-Motion Quilting on Your Domestic Machine” with Erin Russek on QNNtv.com.

As always, to find out about Quilters Newsletter’s giveaways, quilting news, tips, techniques and more, visit us on FacebookTwitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube,  QNNtv.com and our website. Plus, see Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com and classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Mary Kate Karr-Petras | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

How Sharp Are Your Quilting Tools?

PLEASE NOTE, THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED. THANK YOU TO ALL WHO PARTICIPATED. CONGRATULATIONS JANET!

The quilt I’ve been making the most progress on lately uses what is basically an Irish chain quilt design. Traditional single Irish chain quilts use two colors, but this one uses six. The Mardi Gras 2 collection from Stonehenge Northcott called to me, and I had to make something with several of the prints and mottled solids. I searched for a pattern for a while and decided that an Irish chain but with variations on where the colors go would work for me. In order to make piecing faster and spend less time playing on the design wall, I took sample images of the fabrics into Adobe Illustrator before cutting. This is the quilt on my design wall with all the blocks pieced to the point where the original design ended up:MardiGrasIrishChain 550 How Sharp Are Your Quilting Tools?

And here’s the illustrator drawing I did showing the border I’m planning on adding — the border I added to the design after I decided the quilt would be too small otherwise.Mardi Gras Irish Chain Quilt Top Design How Sharp Are Your Quilting Tools?

While I was cutting out the fabrics for the part of this quilt that’s already together, I noticed that although I thought the blade in my rotary cutter was pretty new, and for the most part it’s pretty sharp, it has a chip out of it, meaning that about every three inches or so there was a thread or two in the fabric that didn’t get cut on the first pass. So to remind us all that we need good rotary blades and in general sharp cutting tools, this week’s giveaway prize for one lucky winner is a set of 3 sizes of Fiskars Amplify Razor-Edge Scissors with blade guards:
Scissors 550 How Sharp Are Your Quilting Tools?

A picture of the top of the box they’re in:ScissorsBox 550 How Sharp Are Your Quilting Tools?

The full inside of the box, with scissors, foam protective mat that sits on top of them, and the little rubber pair of decorative scissors on the foam mat:ScissorsInBox 550 How Sharp Are Your Quilting Tools?

To enter for your chance to win the Fiskars set, leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm Mountain Time, Sunday August 23, 2015 telling us about something you’ve had to struggle with in your quilting but either overcame — or didn’t.  If you have a preference between the prizes, let us know that in your comment as well. Since winners are randomly selected, we don’t guarantee you’ll win your preferred prize if chosen, but we’ll do our best! Open to anyone worldwide who has not won anything from Quilters Newsletter in the past 90 days. If you are randomly selected as a winner, the email will come from QNMquestions@fwmedia.com with “Quilters Newsletter blog giveaway” in the subject line.

To find out about more giveaways, quilting news, tips, techniques and to see all the beautiful quilts we like to share, join us on FacebookTwitter, Google+, Pinterest, InstagramYouTube and our website. Plus, see Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com and classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Caitlin, Contests | Tagged | 325 Comments

Memory Lane

When I was an infant, my parents bought a farm just outside of a small town in northeast Colorado. I lived there until the fall before seventh grade.

Our home was this big two-story stucco house.

The Doughty place Memory Lane

My Childhood Home

This weekend was a school reunion for anyone who attended school in that small town. They have a reunion every five years and you don’t have to have graduated from the school, you only have to have attended. I can’t imagine the amount of work that goes into such an event. One of my very best friends is on the committee that organizes it. She said there were nearly 170 people at the dinner and dance. I hope all of the others there had as much fun as I did.

Our school mascot was the pirates. Look at this scene that decorated one of the walls at our dinner.

The Pirates Memory Lane

Some of the Decorations

The grade school is gone now and the high school is in shambles but the hold that the community and the wonderful people that were a part of it have on my heart remains strong.

As I was driving home, I started to think about a quilt I’ve been planning for a long time, a quilt of some of my childhood memories. I’ve done a lot of the preliminary work for this quilt. I went to our old home in 2001 and took many photos of the house, the barn, etc.

There is a box for all the pieces and parts and the quilt already has a name. My maiden name was Doughty and the man who owns the farm now told me a few years ago they still identify it as “The Doughty Place.”

stored Memory Lane

The Storage Box for This Special Quilt

I have purchased the fabric that I think will be hard to find.

fabric for Doughty place Memory Lane

Fabric for the Doughty Place Revisited

I have a written plan for what scenes will be included.

The plan Memory Lane

My Ideas for the Blocks

One of my friends found a photo of a 1951 Ford pickup in a 2001 issue of Country Living. That’s what Dad drove and I plan to have that old pickup for one of the blocks. Dad’s pickup was blue and not quite as fancy as this red one – I don’t remember the chrome on the hood – but this photo gives me a great place to start.

Dads pickup Memory Lane

A Photo for the Block with Dad’s Pickup

Then, because many of the things I want to show are not things I’ll find anywhere else, I started drawing pictures.

Dad and I were walking hand-in-hand through a field one day. He was irrigating. We both saw the snake at about the same time. It was a harmless milk snake and he simply lifted me by the one hand he was holding onto, took a few steps and set me back down. (Lesson learned – don’t panic, take action and keep on going.)

snake Memory Lane

Dad and I and the Snake

Mom always baked a beautiful Swedish tea ring for each of our teachers at Christmas time. I can remember being so proud of my wonderful present as I took it to school.

Christmas baking Memory Lane

I need to change Mom’s feet, they look like they are pointing the wrong direction.

I have pictures drawn for six of the blocks and then I got discouraged because my artwork is so primitive. But as I look at it again, I think I like it. Yes, it’s primitive but the shapes are simple so they will be easy to turn into applique. I think I need to give myself a break, not expect art that looks like Picasso or Monet and keep drawing.

I’m guessing I’ll be spending a fair amount of time in the near future finishing the artwork.

Before I get back work on the things on my desk, I want to tell you about two things at QuiltandSewShop.com. They are having what they call a back issue blowout. There are lots of great magazines from Quilters Newsletter and several of our sister publications. Check out what is available here.

Also be sure to see their deal of the week. There is one scrap bag fat quarter pack, several color specific fat quarter packs and a couple of holiday packs. What fun!

And, until next time, remember to visit Quilters Newsletter on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Google+ and our website for the latest news, quilting fun and ideas. In addition to Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com, there are classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Happy quilting!

Posted in Inspiration, Lori Baker, Staff Quilts | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

My only family quilt

The phrase “these aren’t your grandmother’s quilts” holds no sway with me, partly because neither of my grandmothers quilted. But at least one of my great-grandmothers did, and she made this quilt for my father when he was small.

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My father’s baby quilt made from a Ruby Short McKim pattern

When I started quilting as a young adult still living at home, my father took this quilt out of his closet and showed it to me for the first time. I have no idea if he’d had it all along or if it had been at my grandparents’ house until my grandmother died a few years beforehand, but that was the first time I remember seeing it.

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Woodpecker block

I just visited my parents last week and remembered that my dad had a quilt, so I asked him if I could look for it in his closet. There it was, neatly folded inside a pillowcase, though dirtier than I recalled. Knowing that my mom has been in let’s-clear-out-some-clutter mode, I asked him if I could take it home with me. He said yes, and I got misty-eyed — aside from the quilts I’ve made, this one, made by a great-grandmother who died long before I was born, is the only family quilt I know of on either side of my family. It is, therefore, priceless.

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Seagull block

Of course it’s not labeled, but I got my great-grandmother’s full name from my dad so I can label it myself. A quick Google search confirmed that it was made from the Bird Life pattern designed by Ruby Short McKim, a wildly popular and prolific designer of the early 20th century. The pattern was published in 1928 (and is still available for purchase), not long before my father was born, so the timing makes perfect sense.

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Robin block

As the appraisers on “Antiques Roadshow” are fond of saying, there are some condition issues with this quilt. All of the machine piecing and hand quilting has stood up well as has the binding, but a number of the embroidery threads have disintegrated over time, particularly whatever thread — presumably brown — Great Grandma used for tree branches.

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Owl block

There’s also a good amount of discoloration and one place where something purple got on it (could it be really old grape jelly?). I’m definitely going to clean it but I think I’m not going to try to restore the missing embroidery. I like that I have something from my father’s childhood, and something that was handmade by an ancestor born in the 1860s. That’s pretty rare in my family! It is the age it is, and it clearly was used and washed a number of times. Attempting to restore the missing embroidery would detract from the genuine sense of family history I get from it.

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Bird Life quilt

Do you have any quilts passed down through your family? If so, here are some resources that can help you document and care for them for the next generations.

DPODW011415 My only family quiltHistory is fun when it’s all about quilts! Bill Volckening started collecting quilts 25 years ago. His collection includes more than 250 examples made between 1760 and present day. Rich with ideas and inspiration for today’s quilters, some of the old quilts are surprisingly modern. In this on-demand web seminar, Bill Volckening shares some of the most outstanding and unusual examples from his collection, and will talk about what today’s quilters can glean from quilt history. Click here to learn about the Quilt Collecting 101 on-demand web seminar.

LQSAR1400 My only family quiltA lot of damage to vintage and antique quilts happens because of how they’re stored. SAR Acid Free Storage Boxes allow you to store quilts, linens and other needlework in an acid-free and lignin-free fiberboard box with a flip-up lid. Includes 24 sheets of acid-free tissue to fill folds and prevent creasing. The SAR Acid Free Storage Box is available in a large 30″ x 18″ x 6″ size and medium 18″ x 15″ x 5″ size.

LQ20358 My only family quiltIf you’d like to make your own family heirloom quilt that looks as if your great-grandmother might have made it, check out Lizzie’s Legacy: More Quilts from a Pioneer Woman’s Journal. Journals written by Elizabeth Mathews Carpenter, the author’s great-great grandmother, were the inspiration for the 14 projects in this book. Interspersed with he enjoyable quilt projects, Lizzie’s journal entries contain stories that capture the spirit of life on the Texas prairie enthrall, astonish and boggle today’s mind. Click here to learn more about Lizzie’s Legacy.

As always, to find out about Quilters Newsletter’s giveaways, quilting news, tips, techniques and more, visit us on FacebookTwitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube,  QNNtv.com and our website. Plus, see Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com and classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Mary Kate Karr-Petras | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Black, Red, Aqua, Yellow and Reminiscent of the 1950s

PLEASE NOTE, THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED. THANK YOU TO ALL WHO PARTICIPATED. CONGRATULATIONS, MELISSA!

August is already in full swing, and around the Quilters Newsletter office, we’ve been discussing things like kids going back to school and what we’re planning for our December/January 2016 issue.QNAS15Cover 800 Black, Red, Aqua, Yellow and Reminiscent of the 1950s At home on the design wall, I’m still working on the batik half-square-triangles quilt (and have now gotten the pieces sewn to form squares but realized I might want to rotate and rearrange just a select few before continuing construction) as well as a Mardi-Gras themed fabric Irish chain quilt (pictures coming soon, I promise). Despite working on the upcoming December/January issue and a quilt celebrating a holiday in February, I’m not ready for summer to be over yet. That said, this week’s giveaway prize, which happens to be a Staff Picks fabric collection from the marvelous Quilters Newsletter August/September 2015 issue, is a lovely bundle of Retro Florals from Michael Miller Fabrics that I think has a bit of an “end of summer” style to it: Michael Miller Fabrics Retro Florals 2 Black, Red, Aqua, Yellow and Reminiscent of the 1950s

When we first saw Retro Florals around the QN office, we thought it would make a great collection to go “beyond the quilt” with to make things like skirts, aprons or 1950s reminiscent blouses. Turns out, it works up beautifully for a Dresden plate block as well:Retro Florals Block Black, Red, Aqua, Yellow and Reminiscent of the 1950s

To enter for your chance to win the bundle of Retro Florals, leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm Mountain Time, Sunday August 16, 2015 telling us something you hope to accomplish before the end of summer (or winter, if you’re in the southern hemisphere). Open to anyone worldwide who has not won anything from Quilters Newsletter in the past 90 days. If you are randomly selected as a winner, the email will come from QNMquestions@fwmedia.com with “Quilters Newsletter blog giveaway” in the subject line.

To find out about more giveaways, quilting news, tips, techniques and to see all the beautiful quilts we like to share, join us on FacebookTwitter, Google+, Pinterest, InstagramYouTube and our website. Plus, see Web Seminars on QuiltAndSewShop.com and classes, courses and workshops on Craft Daily.com and CraftOnlineUniversity.com.

Posted in Caitlin, Contests | Tagged , , , | 427 Comments