HotPad Project

I have the best of intentions:  I collect massive amounts of information on a quilting topic before I attempt it.  And, after all that, I can never put my fingers on it when I need it!  Oh well, I figure the important stuff will stick.  And, since circumstances are always different, you just have to DO it & hope for a certain amount of grace.  Hope is a wonderful thing - don't you think?

Hotpad Project
I found a lovely project (near the bottom of the page): ThimbleMouseandSpouse Blogspot 
& Snowman people fabric I really liked from my stash.

Since my center feature was a different size, I adjusted all measurements - not a big deal.  

But, I absolutely refuse to apply Binding to a project <12" finished size.  So, a slim outer border that looks like Binding was improvised.   

Note that I now have to sew my project, right-sides-together with Backing Fabric & Batting & Insul-Bright & turn & hand-stitch the opening closed.  Things are getting kind of thick.

I stitch in the ditch & give definition to the borders - liking it!
Then, I remember a lovely free-motion Snowflake quilting design from the AQ (American Quilter) Magazine, November 2014 Issue.  It really is the sweetest design - trust me.  Three rows are perfect to offset my Snowflakes & I mark w/my new Frixion Pen (heat activated removal - perfect for a HotPad).  The marking works wonderfully - thanks PJ.

But, after ripping out my free-motion Snowflakes three times, I decide to do some straight stitching w/my trusty Walking Foot. 

Ooohhh - all that thickness starts to distort my Snowpeople HotPad.  I sew a few lines across the Top & Bottom to help straighten - oops - should have used my Frixion to mark first.  (Snowflakes don't fall horizontally, so I hadn't marked before.)

O.K., now it's boring.  I sleep on it.  

The next day (ripped stitches forgotten), I decide to add a few free-motion touches to my Center to make it pop.  

I remember that my previous Snowflakes were attempted with feed-dogs up for more control - like regular sewing.  This was suggested for free-motion quilting novices & had worked well for me with other projects.  However, with all the extra padding, this was NOT the thing to do!  

Now, my free-motion went much more smoothly.  And, I managed to make a Snowflake (alright - it does look like a flower).  But, I'm happy & DONE - grace will be there another day, I'm sure :)   love, faith.



Happy Thanksgiving!

I love the Traditions of Thanksgiving - they are what really makes the holiday special for me.  When I was a kid, though, I thought they were annoying - especially the one where we had to go around the table & say what we were grateful for.  You just knew my younger brothers were going to mumble something silly - usually involving pie & whipped cream - or not having to eat their veggies one day out of the year.  I'm lucky enough to be spending T'giving with those same silly brothers later today (one lives locally & the other surprised us with a last-minute visit from the north) - wonder what they'll come up with this year?  I hope it's wonderfully silly - because laughter is the best tradition of all!

What's your favorite Thanksgiving tradition or memory - new or old?  It's ok if it involves pie :)
love, faith.


Whoo hooo - Connecting Threads!

The "5-Yard Everyday Quilt" Pattern can now be downloaded at Connecting Threads!!  Whoo hoo!!!  Be sure to click on:  View More Images for an extra special treat!  Love, faith.



Hey Cowboy!

You guys are SO creative - every time I see a "Five-Yard Everyday Quilt", I'm re-inspired!  Thank you Claire for this idea:  Two for the Price of One!  Yep, you can actually make two Baby Quilts instead of one large Lap Quilt from 5-Yards of Fabric with this design.  Thought I'd give it a try with these Cowboy & Indigo fabrics (remind me of denim without the weight) I fell in love with at First Stitches.  And, don't forget, Baby Quilts aren't just for babies - they might be just the right size for Football Season!  

Each Baby Quilt finishes:  36" x 44" 
Total:  40 Blocks (20 each)
Layout:  4 Blocks across, 5 Blocks down
One Border (2" finished); different for each Quilt

Blocks constructed as indicated in pattern using
Fabrics A, B, C, D, & E except for Borders & Binding.
(Adjust calculations to 20 Blocks each.)

Fabric A:  Make sure you can get 20 fussy-cut features
Fabric B:  Cut carefully - you'll need almost every inch!
Fabric C:  Baby Quilt #1:  Border and Binding
Fabric D:  Baby Quilt #2:  Border or Binding
Fabric E:  Baby Quilt #2:  Border or Binding

Here's my chart laying on top of my Binding selections:
I purchased 1 1/2 Yards of Fabric A since my features were spaced so far apart.  

I also wrote down any identifying information on the fabrics used - just in case!  (I cut Fabric B before I did this - you just know that's the one I'll want more of 6 months from now :)  

What do you do to stay organized?  Let me know & keep the good great ideas coming ....  Next up - 12" Blocks, Queen Sized!

Posted:  Show & Tell Tuesday on
Randi's Site - with any luck!

5-Yard Everyday Quilt Pattern for Purchase

(Lap Quilt, 51" x  67" completed size)                                                              


Will & Way!

Various body parts haven't been cooperating the last several months, so I'm officially proclaiming myself a "southpaw"!  I wouldn't go so far as to say I've mastered cutting fabrics left-handed, but I'm on my way.  Good tools help immensely!

Do you need to switch it up, too??  First of all, you may not need to purchase a new Rotary Cutter!  All I had to do was move the blade assemblage to the other side of my Olfa Rotary Cutter - voila!!  Thank you Margie for this money-saving tip!(http://www.firststitches.com/)   

Absolutely necessary:  The Klutz Glove, Fons & Porter - no need to explain further :)    
And, very helpful:  The Shape Cut, June Taylor - this is a thick plastic grid that helps keep the edge of the Rotary Cutter in the channel for accurate cutting.  I enjoyed this tool (again, thank you Margie) before switch-cutting & LOVE it now!  Very nice training for a new leftie :)
And, an easy pattern:  Instant gratification (well, almost)!  Used my 5-Yard Everyday Quilt Pattern to begin with - no triangles, certainly no curves!  lol  Will be doing machine binding very soon - not quite ready for the challenge of leftie hand stitching just yet .... but, soon ....  faith.


Happy Mother's Day!!

Me:      "What do you want for Mother's Day, mom?"
Mom:   "Children who listen!!"

I can't say ALL of us ever delivered on her request at the same exact time, but I'm sure we each had our moments :)  Happy Mother's Day!

P.S.  She asked for the same thing at Christmas, Valentine's Day, her birthday .... 


Wool Applique & an Old Friend

One of the neat things about the Expo is seeing what's new!  But, even better is running into old friends & catching up :)

Kathy Gaul - Meetinghouse Hill Designs - is a Wool Applique Artist.  Our paths crossed several years ago at a Pueblo Quilt & Stitch Expo - I loved her work (and her) from the start.  My favorite design is "Baking up Some Memories" - you can almost smell the cinnamon & cloves! 

Kathy's work is featured in the March/April/May 2014 issue of Rug Hooking magazine where she shows how to create dimensional dogwood blooms.  Wouldn't they be lovely attached to a purse, jacket or anything!!  And, since she's right up the road (Colorado Springs), you can check out some of her classes, too.  She's a great teacher (I can tell) & very passionate about her designs - pretty soon, you'll be an old friend, too!    faith.


Pueblo Quilt & Stitch Expo 2014

It's NOT too late to get over to the Pueblo Quilt & Stitch Expo still going on today!  I made the rounds yesterday & managed to get a few goodies - left a few things for you to buy though :)  As always, I'm amazed at the variety of styles, fabrics, kits, trims, tools available ...  Something new I spotted:  resin quilting jewelry - lovely & unique!! 

Be sure to stop by the Stitcher's Garden booth & take a peek at my new design:  
The "5-Yard Everyday Quilt" - just look at the possibilities (THANK YOU PJ & LINDA)!!!



Time to FIU!!

When I went to work at the KSC (Kennedy Space Center) a million years ago, the first thing they had me do was read a book of acronyms.  It was a BIG book - I read for 3 weeks.  I'm proud to say that I never fell asleep - although I came close!  Fortunately (although I didn't look at it that way at the time), I worked with five pranksters who kept me on my toes.  I wonder if any of them turned into QG's creating WOA's??  Oh, I hope so!  Now, forgive me - I MGBTW (substituted W=writing for the Q) - I have a pattern to finish!!

Here's the wonderful post that helped me write the above:
Easypatchwork: Acronyms in the Quilting World 

Be sure to add your own Acronyms in her Comments Section - how about MWT's (most wonderful Testers) - without them I could never say TGIF (well, almost)!! LOL  XOXO  faith.


I'm Back!!

Oh, it's been forever since I've posted, but I have an excuse reason for that - I discovered Facebook!  I know - I know - most of you have not only discovered it, you've UN-discovered it & moved on!  Well, what can I say - I'm just a late bloomer!  lol 

O.K., no new patterns to report - yet!  The Radiant Heart design is all written, but it's not quite ready.  I need blocks of time to finish & those are scarce right now :)  However, I am almost done with the "Everyday Quilt" Pattern - my first traditionally-pieced (strip cut) design!  It's sweet and simple .... so, stay tuned (if you haven't given up on me) ...  faith.


All Dogs go to Heaven - Quilting Gallery

WOW - summer really got away from me!  Mostly it was hot & dry too early with scary-close forest fires.  Lots of people lost homes & pets so it seems rather petty to complain about the heat.  With the recent (& unusual for August) rains, life seems almost back to normal.  And, the older I get, the more I realize that loss is a normal part of life.  And, it's what makes the in between time all the more precious.

Found a really great site called the Quilting Gallery - A Place for Quilters to have FUN!  I'm honored to be included in their Quilter Blog List - yaaa!!  Lots of free quilting projects, giveaways, swaps & competitions (friendly!) - so be sure to check them out!   

The theme for this week's Quilters Show & Tell is "Pet Quilts".  My entry is called:  "All Dogs go to Heaven"

You can win all sorts of goodies from the sponsor just for commenting/voting, so be sure to chose your favorites!  "All Dogs" has 45 votes so far!  

All YOU need to do to enter is submit a photo of your quilt that fits the theme & fill out a very short entry form.  Here's the list of previous winners, as well as future themes:  Quilting Gallery - Show & Tell

Looking ahead, I see "Little Things" is on the agenda very soon - Mug Rugs, Purses, etc.!  Geez, not sure where I can find a Mug Rug pattern with pizzaz!  lol  Happy Quilting!  Faith.


Montana - Helena Quilt Show

Just back from a trip to "Big Sky Country".  Managed to catch the Helena Quilters Guild Quilt Show entitled "Stars of the Big Sky".  Oh, yes, there were Stars!!  Here's a little sampling of what I saw:
I entered the lower level of the Helena Civic Center which had vendors around the outside perimeter & quilts hanging in the center area.  Looking up into the chandeliers, I noticed another level - WOW!  Chandeliers & quilts are lovely together - don't forget when designing next dream house!  lol

This quilt is called Sidelights - I just had to add a closeup shot of the Inspirational Words the quilter added - making the design her own:

I'm always on the lookout for needlework & quilting combinations.  Here's a lovely sample (quilt on left - one block closeup on right):

3-D Cacti

I'm in love with circles, spirals, saw blades & wheels ....
Absolutely prehistoric!
Snowy & Gray
Those are pieced PENCILS!!
Nice collection of work - I swear the Bear kept staring at me as I walked by :)
Critters & Coffee!!
             Very creative - I LOVE how the swing is tilting the center block - my favorite FUN piece of the show.

"Love Letters"
Great Use of Focus Fabric - love the tease of partial blocks as the outside border!

And, of course, this is a Judy Niemeyer quilt - the Helena Guild has a certified Judy teacher - how lucky are they??!!
 And, some more!
 OK, I ran out of time after that :)  There was much more to see & buy (although I managed to blow my budget anyway)!!  

It's hard to top a fantastic quilt show that happens once every two years.  But, the most wonderful thing about Montana isn't found indoors! 
"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."
--- Robert Frost