Summer Sampler Three Ways – part 1

In the Spring, I signed up for the 2020 Summer Sampler hosted by Lee Heinrich. It was tagged the ‘summer of easy piecing’ and that was exactly what we all needed after last year’s Bootcamp. So, I signed up immediately!

Problem was that I couldn’t decide on what color palette I wanted to use. I finally figured that I would leave it up to fate. I put some colored pencils in a bag and blind drew out four pencils. I had so much fun doing this exercise that I ended up pulling 8 different selections and I liked 3 or 4 of the combinations. So, I narrowed it down to my 3 favorite combos.

The Sampler consisted of 16 blocks and a fun sashing. The blocks were easier than they look and I like the way they all turned out. This post is about the last color selection. I decided on a scrappy background that coordinates with the main colors and everything was pulled from stash.

It’s not my normal style. I lean toward more jewel tones and grey. But, that is what makes this type of palette selection interesting and fun. It breaks you out of your norm and allows you to play in an area that you would not normally.

I used the sashing instructions that were included with the pattern and then added a border as I wanted it to be a larger lap size than it was with just the sashing.

The more I added to it the more I liked it. A scrappy binding in the aquamarine color really brought it together as well as backing it with a combo of Minky colors and an older Cotton + Steel coordinating print.

I’m calling this one Cactus Flower as it reminds me of that cactus plant that blooms a beautiful pink flower.

Two more to finish up and I can’t wait to see the finished products for the other two color-ways! I love how one pattern can look so different in different colors.

Until next time – Happy sewing!

Spring Starts and Stops

I’ve been involved in quite a few online sew-alongs this spring. I find them on Instagram by following different designers and fabric shops.

One of the first ones was the Daisy Sew-along hosted by Lindsey of Pen & Paper Patterns. Daisies are one of my favorite flowers and this pattern was just so dang cute!

I used the Karen Lewis Textiles fabric line Blueberry Park Low Volume as the flowers and the navy background is from Zen Chic (the Day in Paris line). I love how the flowers pop.

I won a very generous prize for posting the ‘I’m In’ graphic on Instagram. The prize pack was sponsored by Sewtopia, which is a wonderful online fabric shop.

Airflow and Liana fabric bundles by Ruby Star Society

Next up was the Meadowand Sew-along. This one was sponsored and designed by Then Came June. It’s a quick and easy pattern and I had a good time picking fabrics for it. I started with this Ruby Star Society Star print and pulled my blender fabrics from there.

The quilt top is just stunning!

Then were the tops I started last year but finished up earlier this year – block of the month and Sampler quilts. The Perfect HST Block of the Month came to an end which resulted in this quilt top.

This was designed by Lee Heinrich of Freshly Pieced. She designed some paper piecing templates to make Half-square triangles more precise. I used Cotton + Steel Basics in all the blocks with a random grey that I had in my stash for the background.

Lee also had a part in designing the 2019 Summer Sampler. It was designated as Piecing Bootcamp and it definitely was that. But, it’s gorgeous!

I used Ombré Confetti Dots for the blocks and Tula Pink’s Fairy Dust for the background in the blocks. The navy is the same fabric as the daisy quilt above. It’s one of my favorites.

The same team is currently planning the 2020 Summer Sampler which they are taking Back to Basics with some simple piecing. Details have not yet been released.

Now that we’ve covered the Stops let’s move on to the Starts….

First up, the 2019 Quiet Play Pattern Club. I’ve been working on some of the blocks. I’m not currently planning on making the whole quilt but might make the blocks into fun summer placemats. They are all about 9 1/2 inches square and would make really cute placemats. Still deciding….I’m also thinking that the ice cream block might make a great quilt all on its own with all the blocks a different color or shade of color.

Speaking of placemats, I promised one of my best friends that I would make her some and we even bought fabric for them. I’ve been holding that fabric for over a year and finally got the design plan right in my head and went to work on them. Plan A did not work out but Plan B was a roaring success.

And now, another sew-along has popped into my feed. The New York Lattic Quilt-Along and this is my fabric pull for it.

New York Lattice QAL

The fabric pull was inspired by the Birthday Box list that my guild just distributed. Each member that wants to participate lists out the types and colors of fabric that they would like to receive during their birth month. Each participant buys (or pulls from stash) a fat quarter for each of the other participants. I thought it would be fun and challenging to pull the fabric using someone else’s criteria. This one starts this week and should be done pretty quickly with some strip piecing.

Looks like I have a number of quilt tops yet no finished quilts. This is because I’m basically out of batting and am having a small tiff with my local big-box fabric store. Waiting to see if they will make it right before I go get batting elsewhere.

I should have a good stash of finished quilts right before the holidays start so that should work out pretty well.

Until next time….Happy Sewing!

VB Inventory Quilt – Part One

I was recently cleaning out my closet and realized the vast quantity of Vera Bradley bags that I have. There is a VB store nearby that would have a twice yearly Sidewalk Sale with incredible prices and I took advantage of that sale regularly. I wanted to hold on to them but put them to a different use. That’s how my VB Inventory Quilt was born.

Step one – Deconstruction:

I pulled all the purses, wallets, and wristlets that I wasn’t actively using out of the closet, removed any hard bottoms, and threw them in the washer.You know what happens when you put a bunch of purses in the washer? A tangled up pile of purses. That was fun and a little time-consuming to undo all the straps but the end result was worth it.

I kept note of each bag as I was deconstructing them with a seam ripper. Turns out I pulled 33 total pieces out of the closet. Now, I was never a pattern collector. I was an equal opportunity pattern buyer. If I liked it that day and the price was right then I bought it. That’s going to lead to a very bright, happy, scrappy quilt.I used my evening TV watching time to do the seam-ripping. It was super satisfying to tear those seams open and see the inside construction of the bags. I’ve always liked seeing how things are put together.

I separated the pieces into quilted pieces and lining pieces. My plan is to sew all the quilted ones together and then sew all the lining pieces together (add batting and quilt those) then put them all together into a big quilt. I also pulled out the straps and segregated them as well. Not sure how I’ll use those yet but I have some ideas brewing. I’m leaning toward a faux fur or something like that for the back.

Step Two – Block Plan & Cutting

Remember those hard bottom pieces I pulled out of the bags before washing? They inspired the block design for this quilt. They just fit together so nicely.It’s a simple design with a big impact. The bags are apart and the design is set. It’s time to cut the pieces. I can’t wait to see if it transfers to reality as well as I think it will. The first cuts look very promising.Sewing this together is going to be a blast!

Until next time……Happy Sewing!

Summer Sewing 2019

I’ve spent the summer involved in a bunch of quilt-alongs and have been very active sewing up all the blocks.


I dove into this sewalong on the day before it started. The 100 days ended earlier this week and I miss the daily Instagram postings. I believe a habit was instilled and I feel that something is missing each day since I don’t have a block to post.

This one is Christmas themed and I made a big huge mess with my Christmas fabrics making this one. Here come the group photos……This sewalong took a lot of planning as we did have to post each day on Instagram to be eligible for any prizes. I started out 2 weeks ahead in my sewing and I ended 2 weeks ahead but those in between times were sometimes a battle to be sure I had the block done and photographed on the proper posting day.

Turns out I have about 61 unique Christmas fabrics. My plan was to use each fabric at least once and make sure each block had red, green, and white in it to pull all those different fabrics together in the end.

I’ve pieced the top together but that reveal will be for a different day soon.

Summer Sampler 2019:

This one is a block a week type Sewalong and we just finished piecing all the blocks. The next post will be the finishing instructions and there is a circle setting that I’m planning on using to finish this quilt out.

The theme is Piecing Bootcamp and we were taught a different technique with each block and all blocks were designed by a different designer. I am using Ombré Confetti Metallic mixed with Tula Pink’s Fairy Dust fabric. Here are a few of my favorites – HSTs, Transparency, Inset seams, Circles, Y-Seams.This finish will be soon but it’s not there yet. My setting circle color is a dark blue chambray. I want the illusion of rainbows with denim and I think it will look fabulous!

Perfect HST Block of the Month:

I may have mentioned this one earlier in the year but we are now getting toward the end with a big star block coming up soon. I’ve been using Cotton + Steel Basics with a grey background. Here are my favorite blocks from this one.

Little Miss Sawtooth:

This one just started in September but I love what I’ve been able to get done so far. It’s low volume backgrounds with bursts of blue, teal, lavender, and pink.This is going to be so cute when it’s done.

So, what all this means is that I will be finishing, basting, quilting, binding, and photo-shooting my little heart out in the next few months. Lots of finishes coming up!

Happy Sewing and Crafting to you all as the final months before Christmas approach and that Holiday sewing needs to get finished.

Christmas in June?

So, I’ve been working on a myriad of projects that are Christmas themed. When the mood strikes I just dive straight in.

Bringing Home the Christmas Tree:

I have been plugging slowly away at some woodie wagons for the Bringing Home the Christmas Tree Quilt from the Vintage Christmas book by Lori Holt of Bee in my Bonnet.

I have a few tips to share for when your background fabric is running scarce or is super precious and you don’t want to waste it.

Sew the trees first!

By sewing the tree blocks first, you will have some offcuts that you can use on the cars.See that white offcut? It can be used for the 1 1/2″ half-square triangles on the cars. Trim it to 1 1/2″ square then place it on the correct fabric for the car or tire or whatever. Line up the sides as if it was a full square – placing the wonky cut to the side that will be cut off and discarded. Sew your diagonal line using your favorite method. I just eyeball it.Trim the corner as you would if it was a full square and background I was using on this quilt is one I’ve had to order multiple times so I hate to waste any little bit of it and this trick sure did save a whole bunch of it. This pile of offcuts is just from the two tree blocks shown above.Planning how you make this quilt will really save on fabric. I’m not a pre-cutter so this worked out perfectly for me.

Kinship Fusion Sampler Sew-along:

I took the last-minute plunge and joined the #100days100blocks2019 challenge being put on by Gnome Angel. The posting of blocks starts on July 1st so I’ve been furiously sewing them up. I’ve decided on a scrappy Christmas theme and I’m super excited about what I’ve done so far. I’ve got 1/4 of the blocks complete and am ready to post on Day one.My quilt guild is currently involved in a local Shop Hop so I had a great opportunity to pick up some Christmas low volumes to use with some focus prints from my stash. I’m having a lot of fun pairing everything up.Christmas themed projects are in full swing around here and it’s not even July yet! Have you started your Christmas projects yet? Either way – happy sewing!

#loristrinketquilt Finale

I was able to put all the finishing touches on my Trinket Quilt. You can see my earlier progress here and here. This quilt was the result of the Alison Glass sew-along that was held earlier this spring. I made all 40 blocks twice – one with a light background and one with a dark background. This is an alternate layout that I designed in Electric Quilt 8.It turned out way better than I had anticipated.

I usually don’t know how I’m going to quilt something until I put it under the needle and this was no exception. I decided to diagonal quilt through the on point blocks and frame the square ones with some denser quilting. The trinket blocks I left unquilted so they pop a little bit.Now I will admit I was running out of the dark charcoal fabric so added the lighter grey on the binding (as well as the offcuts from squaring the quilt up) and was left with about 5 inches (which is all of the AG charcoal colorway that I have leftover from this project.)Let’s talk about the backing. I adore a pieced back and so I took my trinket scraps and improv pieced them. Then I took those improv rectangles and framed them in all the darker Alison Glass fabrics that I had left. The extra tie block is my label for this quilt.Time to wash it up and put it to use.Though is looks like someone is already putting it to use.

Random Roundup #22

I’ve been working on some quick little projects so I have a lot of little things to share.


I was preparing for a minor surgery and had quite a bit of nervous energy so I made a Midibag the day before which worked great for holding my clothes, phone, and wallet. I also got a few compliments from the nursing staff.I combined 3 mini charm packs – one Modern Background Ink and two Just a Speck by Jen Kingwell. The bag turned out so cute and was the perfect size! You iron the squares to the supplied interfacing and then fold and sew it together. The pattern contains interfacing for 2 bags. I need to decide on mini charms for the second bag. It’s a great little bag for art and craft fairs or the beach.

With the remaining squares, I was able to make this cute little pouch which is now with my sister-in-law. It worked beautifully for transporting a selection of Peppa Pig figures to my nephew.

Microwave Bowl Holders:

My brother’s family requested some of these bowl holders last year when they were here and I finally got around to making them as a housewarming gift. I use a great tutorial from Happy Hour Stitches.

Fabric Swap Box:

My guild is setting up a fabric birthday box swap and I needed a box to use to turn in my bought or ‘curated from stash’ fabric. The accessory box from The Container Store can hold 15 to 18 fat quarters depending on how you fold them. So I created a fabric name label to fit that box. I used my favorite fabrics for this one.The letters are from the Just My Type – lowercase pattern by Kristy of Quiet Play. I used headbands as the straps and sewed them into the binding and it worked beautifully.

Summer Sampler 2019:

I have been wanting to join in on the Summer Sampler that is hosted by Lee at Freshly Pieced, Katie at SwimBikeQuilt, and Faith of FreshLemonsQuilts but I was always preoccupied. This year the theme is Piecing Bootcamp and I love learning new techniques or improving my current techniques.There are two different finishing options but I just adore this curved layout. I’m planning on rainbowing this thing up and chose to use the Ombré Confetti Dots that I’ve been hoarding. I’m combining that with Tula Pink Fairy Dust and a grey Essex linen and it’s going to be epic!This Sampler Series starts tomorrow (May 20) with a block being released once a week. Here’s the link to sign up through Katie’s blog – Summer Sampler.

Stash Enhancement:

Alison Glass Holiday arrived and I cannot wait to get started on the quilt I designed last year. These fabrics will just pop!

I also received Alison Glass Sunprints Light. No plan for those but I just had to have them to fill in my low volumes.Lots more to share but I will pause here to take a breath and get some more sewing done!

Until next time- happy sewing!

Flying High

A few weeks back I joined a sew-a-long that I had been seeing floating around Instagram. I not only joined it but dove in full-force. I was mostly done cutting and piecing by the end of that first day. The only thing holding me back was not enough background fabric. Etsy to the rescue but that meant that I had to wait a few days to finish it up.This is my first transparency quilt attempt but I had been intrigued for a while. I’d really only seen them in solids and I don’t tend to use that many solids so that was holding me back from trying my own. I saw this Hold Tight pattern on Instagram and just had to give it a whirl. I knew that if I was going to use blenders that they needed to be the same pattern in order for the transparency effect to work. I had this gorgeous bundle of Pick up Sticks just hanging out in my sewing room that I received as a birthday gift from a great friend.I started throwing them on the floor using the pattern color chart as inspiration.Then the cutting and piecing began. I am not afraid of piecing curves as I gained a lot of experience with my Teal Fizz quilt top. I loved the first section as I was very secure about the color pull for those balloons. I cut out and pieced all that I could before my perfect background fabric ran out. Waiting for the next weekend was hard….but then I was back in business and got the rest of this top pieced.I pieced the backing by using a pastel charm pack and some leftover green and blue minky that I had in my stash. I also had the perfect binding fabric (Kona Oasis) and the absolute best shade of Aurifil to go with it. This 50 weight Mako Cotton (#4182) was in the Alison Glass box set. I love breaking open a new spool. So exciting.This quilt went together super fast and is so adorable. I want make all the balloons all the time!I used that same Aurifil color to create strings for the balloons and had them mimic the wavy quilting that I did. The quilting shows the movement of them just floating away.I’m hoping to finish a bunch of quilts this spring as long as I don’t continue being distracted by new projects. I think I’ve added about 5 within the last 2 weeks. Does anyone else have this problem?

Happy sewing everyone!

Spring Blooms

I have a lot of projects happening right now but I am super happy to have this Spring table runner finished and on my table!It was put on hold because I ran out of thread while quilting it. I made a point to pick some up at QuiltCon last month and finally put my Trinket Quilt (which you can see here…Trinket Progess) aside to finish up a few things. This table runner was toward the top of that list. I only had two small areas left to quilt before I went looking for a good binding fabric.This particular choice was something I had picked out before I ran out of thread and had put aside, but in view, for when I was ready to bind. I starting trying to decide what fabric I should use when my eye fell on this one and I was so pleased with my forethought as this piece is perfect!

Now let’s talk about the quilting for a second. This is the back of one block and I love how it turned out with this variegated Aurifil thread that I used for the appliqué and I had to use that same design throughout the piece which I was able to do using my walking foot.I love the happy feeling of this runner. I got the pattern inspiration from the Quilt Block Cookbook by Amy Gibson. I used the Petal unit for the center and combined it with the Plus One Block. There are so many different combos that you can create using this book and Amy makes it so easy to do so.

The Blueberry Park fabric fulfills my need for happy spring and summer colors. I had the backing fabric in my stash and it pulled it all together beautifully.I love this runner! What happy spring projects are you working on?

Trinket Progess

We’re at the end of week 2 of the Trinket Sewalong sponsored by Alison Glass Designs. I have all 8 weeks of blocks done and photographed and ready to post on the assigned day. I’ve actually also got my quilt top complete but won’t post that one quite yet. Here are the first few blocks.I booted up my computer and opened up my EQ8 software so that I could take the vision in my head and get it down on paper somehow. Christa Watson jokingly told me at QuiltCon that booting up the computer was the first step to really utilizing the program to its potential. I don’t tend to turn on my computer much since the IPad is just so much easier. I’m so happy I did as I love this design.My trinkets are one light and one dark of each pattern. The designs right next to each other just didn’t look right so I knew I needed to add the center sashing in the four patch blocks.The whole design turned out better than I had it in my head and I am super pleased with the result. Full reveal will be later but I did have time to start working on the backing which will be another Alison Glass fabric improv pieced backing. It’s going to be super colorful and fun!I’m having a blast looking at all the blocks under the #trinketsal hashtag on Instagram. There is so much fabulous creativity and diversity in the blocks. The finished quilts will all be wonderful.

Now to finish up that backing so I can quilt this thing.

Happy Sewing!