Archive | November, 2016

Some Fun With Mini Blocks

16 Nov

Fellow Quilters,
What is on your design wall? I have a little project on mine – literally! A while back, Carolyn Beam, editor of Quiltmaker magazine, asked if I’d like to participate in a fun little sew-along that she and the staff at the magazine are doing this year with some of the blocks from past issues of “100 Blocks”. The sew-along features half-size versions (6″) of 49 different blocks from past issues of “100 Blocks”.

3 color options in Quiltmakers 100 Blocks mini sampler

3 color options in Quiltmakers 100 Blocks mini sampler

The digital pattern is available from Quiltmaker here and kits for 3 different options are also available here . My Lavender Lattice #856 from Volume 9 was included in this special sew-along. Here is what it looked like originally, made in Northcott’s Lavender Market.

original Lavender Lattice #856

original Lavender Lattice #856

I also used the block in an issue of “Quilts From 100 Blocks”, this time using Christmas Traditions. Here is a picture.

Featured in Quilts From 100 Blocks, using Christmas Traditions

Featured in Quilts From 100 Blocks, using Christmas Traditions

I used an alternate block with it, and set it on-point, and it took on an entirely different look.

detail of Christmas quilt

detail of Christmas quilt

This time around, my block seemed to say “star” to me, so I selected a variety of yellows and golds from the Artisan Spirit Shimmer collection, and added a piece of yellow Sandscapes and a lovely rich gold from the new Shimmer Echoes. I chose a navy background for the night sky. I also selected 4 other blocks from the sampler pattern and colored them in the same fabrics. Here are my 5 chosen blocks.5 blocks in Shimmer
Now, if you have followed me on any of the “100 Blocks” blog tours, you know that I love to mix and match. Today’s 5 blocks yielded some great results! I initially combined 2 different blocks in a straight setting. Here are the various combinations. #169 variations#194 variations#856 variationsSome of them are a bit too rigid for my liking, one is a bit too busy, one is too plain, but several of them turned out quite well!
Then I combined different pairs in an on-point setting, and they really sparkled.#169 on-point variations #856 on-point variationsother variationsI rather like the ones that include the outer triangles from block #90 in the setting triangles. Some of them are so different from the others. I’m having a hard time choosing a favorite, so I would like your help. Please post a comment on my blog by Friday November 18 telling me which one is your favorite, and how many projects are on YOUR design wall. I will randomly choose 3 comments, and those commenters will win a packet of Shimmer fabrics. Quiltmaker has also given me an issue of Volume 9 (rare – it’s out of print!) to give out. You can also stop by Quiltmaker’s blog to see which fabrics they’ve used to stitch up my block. Thanks for your help, and good luck!

Eagle Pass Has Landed

15 Nov

Fellow Quilters,100 Blocks Volume 14 cover

It is Tuesday today, and that means that it is my day to blog as part of the Quiltmakers 100 Blocks Volume 13 blog tour.  The tour lasts all week, with 7 pattern designer bloggers each day.  I am wearing 2 hats today – I am blogging as a sponsor of the tour (Northcott provides some prizes for you to win) AND I have a block in this issue – woop, woop!  myblockisin14_95The issue is just hitting newsstands, and the blog tour is a great sneak peek at what’s inside.  I have an advance copy, and let me tell you, it’s good!

My block is #1319, Going to Class.  It has a school of fish, and the fish are swimming in opposite directions.  It reminds me of when I was in high school and there was a 5 minute window to get from one class to the next – everyone was racing in opposite directions!  Hence the name Going to Class.

#1319 Going to Class

#1319 Going to Class

Normally in my blog posts for 100 Blocks, I recolor my and a few other blocks and combine them to see what happens.  However, this time my block did not play nicely with the other blocks.  I scanned the issue looking for designers that I know, and spotted Chris Hoover’s #1341 Morning Glory block.  I recolored it in the Eagle Pass collection that Northcott is showing in this issue.  I came up with 2 color options – I think I prefer the green one.

Chris Hoover's Morning Glory block version 1

Chris Hoover’s Morning Glory block version 1



Chris’ block version 2

Scanning the issue, I saw Deborah Johnson’s #1380 Piper’s Puzzle.  Recoloring it gave me this.

Deborah Johnson's Piper's Puzzle block

Deborah Johnson’s Piper’s Puzzle block

Next, I combined the two.  I’m not really liking it.

Chris' & Deborah's initial Eagle Pass blocks

Chris’ & Deborah’s initial Eagle Pass blocks

What if I change the background to make it the same in both blocks?  Still not liking it.combined blocks different grounds

Okay, what if I designed a quilt around the panel from the collection?  This collection is digitally printed, so the detail in the designs is so realistic.  Northcott featured this collection in our booth at Quilt Festival last week, and the attendees loved it!  They came right up close to examine the detail in the fabric.  For my next attempt, I put the panel in the center and put blocks in the border.  Here are 2 options.  I’m liking it more, but I think I can do better.Framed panel with 2 options

My final version has some additional inner borders to separate the panel and the blocks so that both stand out.  It is double/queen size now, 86” x 96”, and I’m liking it a lot.  It’s a real guy quilt.  With 2 sons, guy quilts are popular at my house.Bordered panel with sky ground

Now, with these posts, there are always giveaways.  I will give a prize pack of the Eagle Pass fabrics to 3 lucky people who comment on my post by midnight tonight.  Quiltmakers has also given me a copy of Volume 14 to give away.  For your chance to win, please post a comment today telling me who you would make a guy quilt for and why.  And don’t forget to visit the other bloggers for a chance to win prizes at their blogs too.

I am blogging again tomorrow as part of Quiltmaker’s Mini sew-along, so please visit again – more prizes!!



Eye Candy

10 Nov

Fellow Quilters,

Today’s post is a quick one, to give you some eye candy of what I’ve been up to lately.

I had a great time in New Liskeard 2 weeks ago teaching my Stacks of Presents class to an enthusiastic group of quilters at Buy a Yard or 2.  Mike cooked gourmet meals for the weekend retreat, including a turkey dinner, since the project was holiday-themed, and Gayle partook in the class.  Long-time quilting friend Liz billeted me.  Several gals either finished or almost finished their quilts – well done, ladies!  Those northern gals were so much fun!

Shirley's Stacks of Presents

Shirley’s Stacks of Presents

Shirley posted a picture of her completed top on Facebook.

I am scheduled to teach the Stacked Presents workshop next March 21 – 25 at A Mountain Quiltfest in Pigeon Forge, TN as well, along with my lone star, simplified double wedding ring, bargello, and mitered borders workshops. I notice that Cynthia England is also teaching there, and is the speaker one night!  Cynthia just won best of show at Quilt Festival in Houston last week.  For details on Mountain Quiltfest, visit

Over the summer, I spent a bit of time piecing a couple of small quilts, but didn’t spend any time quilting – I was at the family cottage, and my longarm machine is not portable.  I really enjoy the quilting part of quilt-making, so I got my fix last month quilting several of the quilts to be featured in Northcott’s booth at Quilt Market.  Here are some photos of a couple of modern ones.  It is stretching me as a quilter when I put one of these on my frame, trying to think of the best way to quilt it.  I really enjoyed the process!

Strips & Bars pattern by Patti Carey

Strips & Bars pattern by Patti Carey


Strips & Bars quilting detail

Strips & Bars quilting detail

The grey one is my Strips & Bars using Northcott’s Colorworks Concepts, out next March.

R-evolution by Kat Wilson Tucker

R-evolution by Kat Wilson Tucker

The white & stripes one is by Kat Tucker Wilson of Next Step Quilt Designs using Simply Stripes.

I was part of the Northcott team manning the booth for Quilt Festival last week, and colleague Elaine challenged me to make a wall quilt using Stonehenge Gradations in the new Graphite colorway for a display in our booth (we were challenging attendees to make one using 5 chips (5” squares) from the Graphite fabrics.  The fabrics said “cow” to me, and I added a super-quick fusible cow face to my Rail Fence quilt, and named it Don’t Fence Me In.

My "Don't Fence Me In" challenge quilt

My “Don’t Fence Me In” challenge quilt

It attracted a lot of attention, as did our entire booth.  Quilt Festival is like Mecca for quilters – 25 aisles of booths, and then there are the quilts!  I was thrilled to see my Psychedelic quilt hanging in the Superior Threads booth.

My "Psychedelic" quilt in the Superior Threads booth

My “Psychedelic” quilt in the Superior Threads booth

My entire thread stash is Superior Threads!  Ninety percent of my stash is variegated thread, and Superior is king of variegation.  My Gammill and I are particularly in love with Fantastico, a high-sheen variegated thread.  I picked up a cone of Superior’s newest thread, MicroQuilter, a super-fine 100-wt for applique and micro-stippling, and am looking forward to giving it a try.

At Festival I met up with Susan-Claire of Gourmet Quilter – my mom and I are making her That Town & Country Block-of-the-Day quilt, and Mom’s version is half-size.  We have the first 49 blocks done – yes, I know, we are about 35 weeks behind.  Susan-Claire snapped this photo of me in her booth with Mom’s version.


Mom’s mini Town & Country quilt

I am participating in 2 blog tours next week, with prizes being given out for both of them, so if you are not a subscriber to my blog, please make a note to drop by on Tuesday Nov. 15th for the Quiltmaker 100 Blocks tour and Wednesday Nov. 16th for the Quiltmaker 100 Blocks minis sew-along. You may win a prize or two!100 Blocks tour Nov 14-18

See you next week!