February 2014

Snowy Days project

Happy snow days everybody!  We’ve had an unusual (for us) snow storm here in Oregon.  We had close to a foot of snow and have had snow for three days now.  It’s beginning to melt and we’ll soon be back to our usual rainy February weather but it sure was fun!!  Guess who loves snow as much as I do?  Ella just runs and jumps and plows through it.  She gets so excited!  It’s fun to still have somebody at home that likes to play in the snow with me.  :-)

snowy Ella

Have you ever noticed how snow days feel like “Freebie” days?  A day to do something you might not have done that day, had it not been snowing outside?  Well I decided to make a little quilt that I’d been dying to make.  I don’t often get to sew something up that isn’t business related, i.e. for a class or Sweet Treasures pattern.  So even though I had a BAZILLION other things I should have been doing, I decided to make this little guy, just for fun!  I’m glad I did!

mini dwell cropped

It measures 13″ x 16″.  The blocks are 3″ x 4″.  It was so much fun!  And fun to have it DONE!  Have you noticed the Mini’s craze that seems to be happening in the online quilting world?  I’m loving them.  If you google Mini quilts you’ll see some fun ones.  Mini walls (a wall of mini’s) is becoming rather popular.  This is my first for my Mini’s wall in my new sewing room.  The walls are a vintagy aqua/blue.  Won’t this be adorable?  It could be the only one for awhile.  That’s OK.  You’ll be seeing some mini’s from Sweet Treasures this spring.

This quilt is the Mini “Dwell” by Camille Roskelley of Thimbleblossoms.  Here’s her mini wall, (scroll down a few pictures) I’m a little jealous.  I love her style and colors.  She is the daughter of the mother daughter team, Bonnie and Camille for Moda fabrics.

I tried a little different type of hanger for the back of the quilt.  A folded square with the raw edges stitched into the binding.  I think it’ll work good for small quilts, and soooo simple.  Inserting a small dowel the width of the quilt will hold the top edge flat and give a spot to hang on a single nail, or sometimes I use a needle for a real light hanging.  Needles don’t make much of a hole.

 dwell hanger corner 2

house blocks

 So what do you think about Mini’s?  Would you make one?  Would you love to have a wall of them?

Thanks for visiting!
Blessings ~

Quilts, Bags & Pillowcases OH MY!

Our November SYOB Retreat was great fun!  I thought I’d show you some of the projects that were being worked on.

(sorry the lighting in the studio is not great for pictures)

Roundabout Mary

Mary’s “Roundabout” quilt.

The “Roundabout” quilt was the November project in the Schnibbles club.

Roundabout Sue

More “Roundabout” blocks from Sue.

Shirley's scrap runner

Shirley and her runner from leftovers. Beautiful!

Sandy's "Springtime Baskets"

Sandy’s “Springtime Baskets”.

Karin's rag quilt.

Karin’s rag quilt

Mary's exploding pineapple block quilt

Mary’s exploding pineapple block quilt.

If you haven’t taken a look, I have an exploding pineapple pillow pattern in the free patterns section.  The block is so versatile.  We’ve used it for pillows, quilts, potholders – we LOVE it around here!!

Jeanie made some ADORABLE pillowcases using the burrito method

Jeanie made some ADORABLE pillowcases using the burrito method.


Jeanie, Shirley and Julie were making bags today.

Mary's 2nd Glamour Girls quilt.

Mary’s 2nd Glamour Girls quilt.

If you’re not familiar with the Glamour Girls line of fabric by Robert Kaufman Designs here’s a link to a short version of the story and pictures of the original sketches with the artist/designer of the fabric, Lorene Carnes.  Lorene lives here in Salem Oregon.  As a young art student she sketched these beautiful images.  WW II broke out and she went to work in the ship yards, tucking away her artistic dreams.  Fast forward 70 years……..a family friend who works for Robert Kaufman Designs saw the sketches in Lorene’s garage and well…..the rest is history.

The line of fabric has been very popular here in Lorene’s home town.  Mary loved the fabric and bought an assortment to create with.  She has made three different “Glamour Girl” quilts.  This is quilt #2.  I’ll do a post with pictures of all three once #3 is completed.  They are all different and it’s been so fun to see the quilts come to life at the retreats.

Block close-up

Block close-up

I wanted to show you the block close-up.  I love the way Loretta Orsborn quilted the blocks.  The quilting gives the quilt a very “Art Deco” feel.  It also puts the focus on the Glamour Girls.  We LOVE Loretta’s quilting!!

Hope you enjoyed the project inspiration from retreat!

Thanks for visiting!
Blessings ~


April 2013

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Last week in pictures

A whole lotta trimmin!

black and white quilting

Lovein some beautiful quilting!


Quilts hangin all over the place.

sea of chevs

Ready for binding.

flannel chev

More binding.

close up of black chev

More great quilting by Loretta Orsborn.

Made something cute out of these!

Made something cute out of these!

Wrote a pattern for this.

Wrote a pattern for this.

spent a lot of time here.

spent a lot of time here.

And played with these two!

And played with these two!

2 classes Monday, quilt group Wednesday and my son here this weekend to help me with a couple projects.

Whew!  I made it.

Hope you’re week’s off to a great start!


Thanks for visiting!
Blessings ~


December 2012

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Machine Binding Tutorial

I can hardly believe I just typed that title!!  Anyone who knows me, knows I’ve always been pretty hard-nosed about NOT machine binding my quilts.  I decided to listen to some of my own guidelines I give students.  These are a few of the questions to consider when making a quilt:

  1. Who’s it for?
  2. Will this be an heirloom quilt?
  3. How will this quilt be used?

Those three questions can help you make many of the decisions needed when putting together a quilt.  Here’s how I answered those three questions for this quilt:

  1. Sam – my three year old grandson.
  3. It’s for his “big boy” bed.  hopefully used and snuggled in a lot.  It will be washed tons!

Since I was pressed for time and knew this binding needed to be very durable I decided to, ekk, machine bind it.

So this is a machine binding tutorial from someone with little experience but I had good results so I thought I’d share my process.

I chose to put a minky type fabric on the back of this quilt which made it a little heavier and thicker (and snugglier) than a standard quilt.  I used a walking foot through the whole process and HIGHLY recommend it.  I really don’t think it would have gone nearly as well without it.  It fed the quilt and binding through the machine evenly with no hiccups.

I began with my trimmed and squared quilt, and binding that was cut 2 1/4″ wide and stitched together end to end for a continuous binding.

Press the binding in half wrong sided together the length of the binding.

Line the raw edges of the binding with the raw edge of the quilt and stitch using a scant 1/4″ seam.

stitching binding to backing

I don’t usually put a label on the back of a quilt that is going to be what I call a utility quilt.  A quilt that will be “used up”.  But I wanted to add a little tag.  I just slipped it into the seam when stitching my binding on.

I love these little TagItOns!  Here’s a link to the different tags they produce.  Check for them at your local quilt shop.


Once your binding is stitched onto the quilt, wrap the binding around from the back to the front.  It’s critical to bring the folded edge of the binding just past the stitching line from stitching the binding on.

The walking foot helps feed the layers through evenly.  I bumped my needle to the right so it stitched right next to the folded edge of the binding.

I didn’t pin but took it slow and lined up the binding as I went along.  I folded the corners to miter them just as I would if I were hand stitching my binding down.

In a nutshell ~the goal here is to bring the fold of the binding about 1/8″ past the stitching line, stitch next to the fold  and the stitching line on the back should be next to the binding not through it .

lineing up

stitching on back

Stitching line on the back.

sttiching on front and corner

Stitching on the top.

My little helper for this project.  She really liked that snugly fabric!

my helper

I love the way quilting looks on the back of solid colored snuggle fabric!  It shows the pattern so well.  Aren’t the monkeys adorable on Sam’s little monkey quilt?

monkey quilting

I hope this tutorial is helpful when you decide machine quilting is right for your project.  It’s a good option for those utility quilts that will be used and loved!!


Thanks for visiting!
Blessings ~