Category Archives: Finishes

WIP Wednesday and Golden Threads Finish!

What in the world was I thinking, when I planned on posting this finish the same weekend as Ava’s seventh birthday. No way that was ever going to happen! I decided to just lump it in with my WIP post instead.


At the beginning of Aug, I decided to take an inventory of all my quilt projects based on what stage of completion they are in. My categories are… fabric cut, blocks pieced, top done, top and back, basted and quilted. I only advance a project on the step where I set it aside, so my Scrappy Swoon jumped from cut to top and back in one swoop. I’m finding that the quilted category is ending up being unnecessary, since binding is my favorite part of the process, so I rarely pause before I finish a quilt up. As the month wore on, I decided to make a list off to the side of my finishes. As you can see from the picture above, I have had four finishes since I made this list, my do. Good Stitches Scrappy Trips, Anna’s 18th Birthday quilt, a commissioned baby quilt and the quilt I’m going to talk about today that I made in exchange for long-arm services.

One of the best things about Golden Threads Quilting Club is that they build community. While one of the goals is to make lap quilts for local seniors, after members make a charity quilt they then help them make quilts for themselves. Since I’m already a quilter, Tara and I kind of reversed the process. She long-armed Anna’s quilt and I made a lap quilt for her to donate.


I had a partial layer cake of Kate Spain’s Serenade and with the addition of a couple of stash fabrics, put together a simple quilt top. I love that it has the feel of a Fall garden. Ever since I saw Janice’s Ultra-Wavy Quilting tutorial at Better Off Threads, I knew I wanted to use it in a quilt. Since this was a relatively small quilt, it was the perfect opportunity to give it a go. As a bonus, a couple of the fabrics have a wood grain pattern and I knew the waves would soften the quilt pattern.


I really couldn’t be more thrilled with the results. In fact, this may be my new favorite quilting method. I had bought a large piece of one of my favorite Terrain prints on sale months ago and it made the perfect backing. While the long purple trimmings from Anna’s quilt back added the finishing touch for the binding.


As for the rest of my WIP’s, I hope to clear off the right hand page by the end of the month. I have two quilts basted…my giant star that’s been partially quilted since last winter and the a scrappy 16-patch that’s waiting for inspiration to strike.

DSC_0490DSC_0140I have four quilts ready for basting. Cate’s weighted blanket has been waiting for me to finish the inner weighted part since last Fall.


The other three I pieced in the last month… a yellow and green Giant Scrappy Swoon, a second lap quilt for Golden Threads made from Anna’s birthday quilt scraps and a Comma baby quilt I’m making for a friend.

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But first on my list for this week are BEE BLOCKS!!!! Really!

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
and Finish It Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts


Anna’s 18th Birthday Quilt

It always sucks a little when one of your kids birthdays falls during lean times. It’s even worse when it’s a milestone birthday. With my husband not working and our income significantly lowered, we couldn’t afford to have a party or big gift for our daughter, Anna’s 18th birthday. It was time to get creative. It actually reminded me a lot of her first birthday. Fresh out of college with a baby, we struggled to make ends meet. For months leading up to her birthday I would buy a ball of cotton yarn on pay day and crocheted her a blanket. Because I added to it so slowly, the dye lots didn’t match, but it didn’t matter. That blanket went everywhere with her for years. Earlier this summer, every time she would catch me sewing (mostly bee blocks), she would ask when I was going to make her a quilt. I finally answered one day that I’d have it done by the time she graduated (next May) and she gave me a dejected “oh” and stopped asking.


Back when I started sewing I participated in a Denyse Schmidt charm swap sponsored by Jill at Made with Moxie. I had two slots and cut into them right away to make some hexies. Anna in particular liked her fabrics, so I set the rest aside thinking I’d incorporate them in a project for her. Over time I added in 2 1/2′, 4 1/2″ and 6 1/2″ squares of Flea Market Fancy, Chicopee and several ds Quilts fabrics form Joann’s, with the intention of making a Magic Numbers Quilt for. So with nine days before her birthday, I decided that I would surprise her with a quilt. A queen size quilt. Once I realized how many blocks I would need I decided to add in some 12 1/2″ blocks too, to break everything up a bit. Two days later, I had this…

66099_10200899800269507_498236608_n Then came the big challenge…How to quilt it. Not only was I concerned about my ability to wrangle such a big quilt through my home machine, but I also wanted to double up on the batting, since she had asked for a heavy quilt. I have fibromyalgia, so I knew even if I were¬† to take it slow, it was going to be a stretch to get it done in time. With that in mind, I posted to my quilt group on Facebook asking for advice. The most incredible thing happened. The lovely Tara Evans, director of Golden Threads Quilt Club, offered to long-arm in exchange for a lap quilt to donate to a local Senior. Tara really connected with wanting to help me provide a meaningful gift for my daughter’s birthday and finished the quilting the same day I dropped it off.


Since everything for this quilt had to come from stash, I used a backing I had originally intended for a different quilt and bound it in my favorite Chicopee plaid. Despite not “matching” any of the purples on the front of the quilt, I don’t think I could have planned a more perfect fabric. It had the depth needed to hold it’s own with the front of the quilt.

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The night before her birthday, I spent six hours hand sewing the binding to the back. As many different machine binding methods I’ve tried, nothing will ever beat the crisp clean look of a hand sewn binding in my mind. l especially love the perfect corners.


I don’t know who was more excited for her birthday, her or me. I gave it to her within moments of her getting up and she wrapped herself up in it right away.


Anna’s 18th Birthday Quilt Stats:
Pattern: Magic Numbers
Fabric: Denyse Schmidt’s Flea Market Fancy,
Chicopee and ds Quilts prints
Back: 108″ wide purple blender
Binding: Simple Plaid in Charcoal
Finished Size: 90″ X 99″
Finished Date: August 2013

DSC_0923 DSC_0934Linking up to Finish It Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts

Check back tomorrow to see the finished quilt I made for Golden Threads!

A Scrappy Trips Finish for Empower @ do. Good Stitches

The first week of September I sat down to make a list of all my WIP’s. With kids transitioned to school and new free time on my hands, my goal is to get as many done as I can before the end of the year. First on the list, was my month as quilter for Empower @ do. Good Stitches. A Many Trips Around the World quilt has been on my bucket list since Fall 2012. I have a tub of 2 1/2″ strips I cut from most fabrics that crossed my table that year waiting for me to do something with them. I had been waffling about how I wanted to go about it, so when my do.GS month and the Scrappy Trips craze simultaneously hit the internet, it was the perfect opportunity to experiment. I requested a palette of pink, orange and yellows with a single lime green strip down the middle to create a lattice effect. I also requested that stitchers include at least one low volume strip in each block to help create movement. I did a quick fabric pull to give everyone an idea of what I was looking for.

empower collageGiven the number of contributors with a block with a ton of seams, I was amazed at how easy this quilt came together. This group of ladies is a precise bunch and they chose the most RAD fabrics.DSC_0771Then, as these things go, the flimsy got tucked aside while I tried to figure out how to back and quilt it. I auditioned a bunch of different green fabrics, but nothing felt quite right. It wasn’t until I completely switched gears and pulled out some Kona Tangerine that it all fell into place. I also found a random print in my stash that had many of the same colors to widen it up at bit. My goal for the quilting was to soften all the sharp edges. I did a couple simple free-form wavy lines through each square with my walking foot and it was finished in no time.

DSC_0082My final decision was binding. Given how busy the top already was, I decided I didn’t want to add a new fabric. I still had enough of the print from the back and I’ve never done a binding lighter than the main quilt before, so this seemed like another good chance to try something new. I especially like how the the binding pulls out the splashes of lighter prints my bee mates included for their blocks.

DSC_0087Scrappy Trips for Empower @ do. Good Stitches
Finished September 2013

DSC_0090Linking to Finish It Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts

with love…

I think this is the first time I’ve ever finished a project within a few days of starting. Modeled off of Svetlana’s Pixelated Heart Pillow, with love… measures 28″ X 28″, was pieced from stash, quilted diagonally with variegated pink thread and bound in a print from Violet Craft’s Madrona Road collection. My take away from this project is that I really need to take the time to make a design wall, even if it’s temporary. There are a few fabric tweaks that I would have made if I would have had a different perspective when I laid it out. The girls love it though and it will make a nice addition to their room.


Linking up to Finish it Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts
and TGIFF at Sewing By Moonlight

First Finish 2013 ~ Josie’s Quilt

DSC_0414Last Spring I jumped into quilting and pieced a bed quilt for my daughter Josie. I selected 19 fat quarters from my LQS, threw in 5 Flea Market Fancy prints and based it on this stack and slash pattern. I learned a lot about fabric selection with this one. The directional ABC print gave me fits. It was a fat quarter, so when I flipped it so the letters would be in the right direction, I didn’t have enough fabric at the top. I ended up inserting one slice of the back fabric to make up for the lost chunk. This ended up being a happy accident, because that quirk is probably my favorite part of this quilt top. When purchasing that fabric I was focused on the letters and didn’t give much thought to the pictures interspersed with them. Since this quilt used relatively narrow strips, several of the people where cut in unfortunate ways. Luckily I had extra blocks, so the worst of those cuts migrated to the back.

DSC_0417 (2)I love that the pieced stripe on the back matched with the large print make this quilt reversible. My measurements were a little off, so I’m especially proud that the strip ended up relatively straight and centered when I was done quilting. Piecing the large print was a pain, but Josie loved this fabric, so it had to be done.

I waffled on the quilting for most of last year. With the wonky cuts, I had a hard time visualizing it quilted in anything other than a stiple. Josie was anxiously waiting for me to finish and it’s clear that I’m not going to learn to FMQ anytime soon, so I had to come up with another plan. After using the QAYG method for my Log Mansion and straight-line quilting a couple of patchwork quilts, I decided I was confident enough to try a random crosshatch. I didn’t initially plan on quilting it this densely, but more I added the better the organic lines looked

DSC_0423The binding was an easy decision. These orange and gold ombre dots are strong enough to stand out on the front and perfectly frame the back.

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Josie’s Quilt Stats:
Fabric: 24 Fat Quarters including Michael Miller Dick and Jane Collection and
Denyse Schmidt’s Flea Market Fancy
Back: Dick and Jane Fun Park for Michael Miller
Binding: Jane Sassaman for Freespirit Fabrics
Finished Size: 60.5″ X 78″
Finished Date: January 2013

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Linking to Finish it up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts and
TGIFF! hosted by Diane of from Blank Pages

Final Finish 2012 ~ Christmas Patchwork

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I’m finally posting about my last finish from 2012. As soon as this one came out of the machine, it was put into service. It my be months before someone tall is home on a sunny day for good pictures, so I decided to enlist my four-year old assistants.


There’s not much to tell. Straightforward patchwork plus 1/4″ quilting on either side of the seams equals soft, crinkly, flannel backed goodness.


Quilt Stats:
Fabric: 4 sets Christmas charms from Flickr swap
Back: Greenhouse Basketweave in Green Flannel by Erin McNorris
Finished Size: 66″ X 76″
Finished Date: December 2012

Someone’s just thrilled she gets to stand on the table.DSC_0412 (2)

A Bunch of Firsts and a Finish!

My first fabric purchase, my first English Paper Piecing, my first zipper, my first pillow!

Flea Market Fancy was my first fabric purchase last April and it sat in a neat little stack for quite a while after I purchased it. Then one night I decided to cut squares from the corners. Armed with a package of 2″ hexie papers and a needle, I went to work basting. A couple of nights later I had this piece of patchwork and was hooked on sewing. My initial thought when I included this pillow in my Fourth Quarter FAL list, was to hand quilt it. After spending so much time this past month QAYG, I changed my mind and went for a quicker finish. I really enjoy the spirals and I feel like this is the one part of the project I did a good job on.

I’m especially proud of my beginning circle, which is about the size of a quarter. I was able to do it with my walking foot, going extremely slow. There’s a slight bobble on the second ring, but you don’t notice it unless you look really close.

Then I turned to Sew Katie Did and her invisible zipper tutorial. I’ve dreaded zippers for a while now and decided I just needed to jump in and do it. The only problem I had was sewing over the zips a couple of times when I feared I wasn’t getting close enough. It didn’t dawn on me that after I was done sewing it would roll up again, so I didn’t need to get that close. It is tight! But that’s okay, I just have to be careful.

I’m not sure what’s up with that wonky left hand corner. I adjusted the insert a couple of times, but will probably have to go back in and square things up a bit. For now I’m going to sit back and admire all those pretty prints and cross this project off my list.

Linking up to:
from blank pages… for A Celebration of Beginnings linky party
Making Rebecca Lynne for TGIFF!
Crazy Mom Quilts  for Finish It Friday
Eventually to the Fourth Quarter FAL at Quilter in the Gap