Friday, February 22, 2019

Can I Get a Whoop Whoop? Supersmall Supernova...

Hi, all!

Friday has rolled around again and it's a special one - it's time for QuiltCon!  I'm spending my weekend there, meeting friends and taking classes and looking at beautiful quilts, but I still want to do some whooping with you all - so let's get started!


A couple of weeks ago I completed a full size Supernova quilt for my youngest grandkids' interpreter.  In one of the comments, someone said that they wanted to make one in miniature.  Now that sounded like a great idea!  And I had a whole mess of tiny bonus HSTs left over from Nathanael's green annual quilt that I made for Christmas...

Of course, it might have helped if I had remembered I needed 100 HSTs and not 100 pairs!  But I have a whole other set of HSTs all trimmed and ready to make another one if I ever want to!

I don't generally make mini quilts, and this is why - it took almost as long to put this small version together as it did to make the full size one!

I did the same straight line quilting radiating out from the center that I do on the large quilt.  I think I like it even better in miniature!

I used a narrower binding than usual on this quilt, and actually stitched it down on the back by hand!  I really do like Clover clips for holding the binding inlace when I do it by hand.  Much easier!

And here's the finished version!  It measures about 13.5" square, and the HSTs finished out at about 1 1/4" each.

Isn't it pretty?  I can't imagine making one from scratch in this size, but it's a great way to use up bonus HSTs from other projects.

One last picture just for fun!

So - - - can I get a whoop whoop?


And now it's your turn!

What's got you whooping it up this week?

What's making you do a little happy dance?

Share!  We want to dance right along with you,

And it's always more fun to dance with friends!

The party will stay open until midnight Sunday.

Hope to see you there!



Wednesday, February 20, 2019

I May Have a Scrap Problem... It's QuiltCon Week!

Hi, all!

Well, it's QuiltCon week, which means that I haven't had much time to dedicate to scrappy sewing!  I've got a few things I have to make headway on before I can play at QuiltCon this weekend, so most of my time has been spent on that.  However, I did do a little scrappy sewing that I'm saving for Friday's post - be sure to stop in and check it out!

In the meantime, since this is the week for inspiration of all sorts, here's some gorgeous eye candy I found on the internet this week!

Let's start out with P's gorgeous thrifted shirt project - isn't this amazing?  She says it's even prettier in person.  You can read more about it, and learn a little bit about P too, right here.

And check out all the gorgeous scrappy goodness of these two quilts!!  The cross quilt makes me want to go dig in my scraps right. this. minute...

I know it's a little late for Valentine's Day, but isn't this heart quilt adorable?  Maybe for next year...

We all know that "made fabric" is a great scrap buster, and this is a great way to use it!  I believe this is the Moda "Love" pattern, but the blocks are made of scrappy made fabric instead of plain 10" squares.  Wonderful!

Check out this unique alphabet - I really like the look of this one.  I've been tempted to try sewing words, ever since Kate Spain unveiled her words quilt several years ago.  This style of text looks very easy to create - I may just give it a whirl!

So take all this inspiration and sew something for me this week, won't you?   I promise more pics from QuiltCon to inspire you next week!  



Monday, February 18, 2019

Make-A-List Monday - A Very Productive Week!

Hi, all!

I hope you all had a busy and productive week - or at least one that made you happy!  I read a friend's post where she said she had lost her mojo.  I'm sorry for her, and hope she gets it back soon - but I'm glad it isn't me!  I've got too much to do, and it's no fun to work in spite of a lack of mojo.  So say a quick prayer for my friend, that she gets her mojo back soon!

Last week was really productive for me, so let's see how I fared with the tasks I set out in my list...

1.  Quilt a black and white ministry quilt, and add a red flange to the binding.
Done!  I like the flange, although I'm not sure it's worth the extra time for every quilt.  But this was a good one to learn a new skill on - it really makes this quilt pop!

2.  Write a note of encouragement to go with one of the ministry quilts (special request).
Done!  This was a new experience for me, but it really brought into sharp focus some things about my own history.

3.  Layout a t-shirt quilt.
4.  Write an estimate for that quilt.
Done!  I started with this - a too-small puzzle quilt arrangement...

...and ended up as this, a very neat and tidy arrangement, all measured out to make it a little easier to pull this one together.  The estimate is written and approved, so I'm ready to start making blocks!

5.  Write tutorial #4 for the Rockin' Rectangles series.
Done!  This was such a fun quilt to make, and there's a bunch of alternate layouts in the tutorial.  You can see it here.

6.  Quilt the Rockin' Rectangle quilt #5.
Done!  And not only did I quilt #5.....

...but I quilted Rockin' Rectangle Quilt #6, too!

7.  Write tutorial #5 for the Rockin' Rectangles series.
Done!  Be sure to check back this coming Sunday for the "Small Town" tutorial!

8.  If the sun EVER shines again, take some quilt pics!
Done!  You can see the pics above that I took last Wednesday, taking advantage of the sunshine.  It's sunny today, too - but it's the first time since last Wednesday. Glad I got them when I could!

9.  Write up a handout about H2H for potential sponsors at QuiltCon.
Done!  I'm hoping I can line up some new sponsors for Hands2Help later on this week face to face!

10.  Answer some interview questions for a friend.
Done!  My friend Michelle (formerly The Desert Quilter) has started an on-line shop and accompanying blog, making jewelry.  She celebrates makers in many ways and has started a series of posts profiling them.  I had the honor of being her first guest!  You can read the post here...

11.  Starch and press a vintage top preparatory to starting repair work on it.
Started!  I found that it was easiest to press and starch a section, then do the simple repairs and mark places that will need more in-depth attention.  I did a section about two feet by three feet.  Hey, it's a start!

12.  Keep up with any quilt ministry needs that come up.
Done!  We gave away quite a few this week...

This quilt went to a baby who just had a heart transplant...

...and this one went to a woman just diagnosed with cancer.

This one also went to a woman with cancer...

...and this one went to a woman with ongoing health issues.

And finally, this quilt went to a woman diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and just starting treatments.

So that was last week, very successful with one thing finished that wasn't even on the list!  This week's list will be a little smaller (I think) because QuiltCon starts on Thursday and I will be hanging out there all weekend!  Here's what's on my plate this week...

1.  Deconstruct t-shirts and make blocks for the commission 
t-shirt quilt.

2.  Start assembling the t-shirt quilt.

3.  Prep a whoop-whoop Friday post ahead of time and schedule for posting.

4.  Mail a ministry quilt and a donation quilt.

5.  Deliver three rolls of batting to church (hooray for Joann's doorbuster sales!)

6.  Pull together my supply bag for each day of QuiltCon!
(can you tell I'm a little excited?)

7.  Keep up with any quilt ministry needs that come up.

A relatively short list this week because of QuiltCon - I don't want to feel guilty while I'm hanging out there!  I'm pretty sure I can get to all of this, and hopefully finish assembling the quilt top by end of day Wednesday. Then it can be quilted next week!  Keep your fingers crossed that everything goes well.

And now the question is - - - what are YOU working on this week?



Sunday, February 17, 2019

Rockin' Rectangles - Check Me Out!

Hi, all!

Do you have junior jelly rolls left over, even after last week's tutorial?  Or are you still looking for that "just right" bit of inspiration to use them?  Today's tutorial may be just the ticket for you - bright, sunshine-y and happy, it may spark your interest to make one for yourself!


About three months ago, when I was just starting to look for inspiration for this tutorial series, I saw this absolutely gorgeous scrappy quilt on Pinterest...

...which sparked a search for the original creator of the pattern.  Lynn Dykstra, who blogs over at Klein Meisje Quilts, graciously agreed to let me create my own version and tutorial of this wonderful quilt!  However, if you'd like to see her version and tutorial, you will find them here.

So now, I'd like to introduce you to my version - and in keeping with the theme of "Rockin' Rectangles", it's named for a great old rock-and-roll song - "Check Me Out"!

Quilt Size:  56" x 64"

Fabric Requirements:

1 junior jelly roll containing two strips each fabric. From the jelly roll, choose your favorite nine pairs.  NOTE:  All of the junior jelly rolls I had on hand were set up this way - ten different fabrics, two of each.  Yours may not be the same.

OR 18 2.5" x width-of-fabric (WOF) strips, in matching sets of two (9 different fabrics).

45" (approx. 1.25 yards) x WOF of background yardage (white in the picture above)

Approx. 1.5 yards of sashing/border material (black in picture above)

1/2 yard for binding

First Cutting Instructions:

Using your background yardage, cut 18 2.5" x WOF strips.

Block Construction:
Pairing a background WOF strip and a print WOF strip, sew them together along the long edges.  Repeat for all the strips, chain piecing to save time.  Cut apart and press the seams toward the print fabric.

Now take your strips and cross-cut them into three sections, each a minimum of 12.5" long.  (That is the length required for your final piece, but if you have extra, just cut them a little longer and you can trim off the excess after the next step.) 

Sew the three strips together, alternating print and background colors as shown above.  Press seams towards the print fabric. Trim one end straight.

Now cross-cut the piece into five 2.5" wide strips as shown above.

You should be able to create two matching sets of these five strips (remember needing strips in matching sets of two?) so create the other set now using the instructions above.

Now take two of your matching strips and lay them side by side.  Reverse the one on the right so the blocks form a checkerboard pattern.  NOTE:  BE SURE that you always put the same type of square in the upper left corner - always a print or always a background.  (Don't ask me how I know this.....)  Sew the two together along the long edge, matching the seams carefully.  Press the long seam open (it will make your top lie flatter in the end.)

Repeat until you have made all of your checkerboard blocks.  You will have 45 blocks.  Measure your checkerboard block along the long seam (not the edges) for the next step.  For the purposes of this tutorial, my measurement was 12.5".

Second Cutting Instructions:

Take your sashing material, and cut 45 2.5" x 12.5" strips.  (You should cut yours to the length of your own blocks, whatever that happens to be.  Everyone's seam allowances are a bit different!)

More Block Construction:

Sew a black sashing strip to the left side of your checkerboard blocks.  This is a good time to check and see that the upper left square on your blocks is always a print square, or always a background square.  (Don't ask me how I know....) There's really no good solution to how to press your seams at this point, as all the black seams will be above each other. You could press them open, or alternate pressing towards the sashing or towards the block.  If you choose to alternate, you may want to wait until you decide on the layout of your quilt to press those seams.  

Put them up on your design wall as you go so you can see how beautiful they are! No need to decide on a layout at this point.


Now comes the fun part!  You get to decide what layout you want to use.  This quilt is laid out in nine columns of five blocks.  Here are a few of the ones I fiddled around with...

Plain and simple - the same color in each column.

A little wavy - shifting alternate blocks one column to the right in each row.

A sideways mountain - you can see each color appears in three different rows.

But this is the design I ultimately ended up on - the colors move diagonally across the quilt from upper left to lower right.  It had the right amount of movement for me without being "frantic".  

Once you decide on your layout, start sewing the sashed blocks together into nine columns.  Then sew your columns together.  Now you can press the long sashing seams all towards the sashing.

You're almost done!  If you look at your top so far, you will see that the left side of your quilt has a border, but the other three sides do not.  Let's take care of that!

Final Cutting Instructions:

Take your remaining sashing material, and cut five 2.5" x WOF strips.  Sew them together into one long strip.

Now, measure your top down the center from top to bottom.  (Don't measure the edge - this will help square up your quilt.)  From your long border strip, cut a piece the length of that measurement.  Pin it to the right edge, matching the ends up and easing either the quilt top or the border strip to fit.  (If there's a major difference, check your measurement!)  Sew.  Press seam toward the border strip.

Now measure your top across the center from side to side.  Cut two pieces the length of that measurement.  Again pinning it to the top and easing any extra, sew and press the seams toward the border strips.

And your top is done!  Hopefully the sun is shining - if it is, go outside and take a stained glass shot of your quilt, just because it's beautiful.  Post it on Instagram, pat yourself on the back, then get back to work and finish that quilt!

Quilt as desired - ha!  This quilt would look lovely with straight line cross-hatching on the diagonal, or even just a random meander (which is what I did for time's sake.)  Bind it, and you're good to go!

Size-wise, this quilt would be a match for some of this year's Hands2Help charities - both Quilty Hugs for Happy Chemo and Mercyful Quilts would accept quilts in this size.  And if you are one of those who like to "tweak" patterns for size, it could be adapted for Jack's Basket, using fewer blocks.

I hope you like this latest entry into the "Rockin' Rectangles" family - a simple quilt that works up quickly and has a big impact!  Be sure to stop by Lynn's blog and show her some love - she came up with a great design!  And now, in keeping with the theme of the series, here's a blast from the rock-and-roll past to get your toes tapping and put your creative juices in overdrive...

Kind of makes you want to get up and dance, right?  So dance to your stash and pull some fabric - get playing!



**Remember that if you want to get a head start on one of the later tutorials, you can press your strings and cut them into 8.5" lengths. 

**If you'd like to save or print the tutorial for this quilt, here's the easiest way to do it.  Scroll to the bottom of this post and look for this little green box:

Don't see the green "Print PDF" box?  That's easy to fix. Go to the top of the post, and click on the post title (in this case, "Rockin' Rectangles Begins! Place Your Bet...").  That will open up this post with the comments, and you will see this between the body of the post and the beginning of the comments.

Click on the green button, and a printer-friendly page will open so you can print and save the tutorial!  Voila! And the best part?  It won't print out page after page of comments and sidebar stuff.  Hooray!

Don't want to print it out?  This tutorial will remain here as long as the internet is alive, so you could just bookmark the post and create a group in your bookmarks for Tutorials!  That way you can find it any time.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? A Mixed Bag...

Hi, all!

Wow!  Friday sure came on in a rush this week, didn't it?  But now that it's here, we all know what time it is - time to get our whoop whoop on!  Are you ready?  Let's get started!


Isn't that beautiful?  It's a quilt kit from Hancock Fabrics (that I don't own and don't have time to make) but I did think it was an appropriate start to today's post, the day after Valentine's Day.  It certainly made me whoop when I saw it in my email first thing that day!  Now I'm wondering if you can make it out of scraps...

And speaking of Valentine's Day, my husband knocked it out of the park with LOTS of chocolate and these beautiful roses!  He's definitely a keeper...

And see that red oval on the pic above?  Look inside that oval.  Do you see it?  Yes, that's actually SUNSHINE - something that's been in small supply around here lately.  I finished three quilts (two of them on Tuesday morning) just to take advantage of the predicted sunshine to take pictures for the blog.  So I'm a little bit ahead of the game on quilt finishing! But I can't show them off just yet...

And I've had happy mail this week!  First to come were these great stickers from Sticker Mule...

They were running a good sale and I wanted to see what their stickers were like, so I ordered these.  I am AMAZED at how great these are - they are vinyl, like you might put on your car window, and so well made!  I'll have these at QuiltCon if any of you are there and want one!

And yesterday, just in time for Valentine's Day, this arrived!  I ordered it on a whim from - they had a fabulous sale1  There are 50 fat quarters in this bundle, a mix of Kaffe, Tula Pink and Amy Butler - and it was less than $1 per fat quarter!  I couldn't pass that up! Now I just need to find time to make a great quilt...

And this doesn't look like much, but it's a hard-won layout for a t-shirt quilt, puzzle style, with too few t-shirts to do it easily!  I had to resort to graph paper so I could see what would actually fit where and how much I would need between each shirt.  But it was actually easier this way, so I may start doing all my puzzle quilt layouts this way!

And Wednesday night we had a great night at church, sewing and yakking and laughing and just generally having fun!  We had a roomful of ladies - I think about 14 - but I couldn't catch them all in one place.  Here's a couple of the pics I got, though, so you can see some of our great crew!

Oh, and one more thing (although I don't have a pic for it) the replies from potential H2H sponsors have started rolling in - they have no idea just how grateful I am for them!  It's going to be a great year!

So as I said, it was a mixed bag last week but I'll still ask - 

Can I get a whoop whoop?


And now it's your turn!  

What's got you whooping it up this week?

What's making you do a little happy dance?

Share!  We want to dance right along with you, 

And it's always more fun to dance with friends!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight.

Hope to see you there!