Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Goodbye 2014!

2014 was a busy year!
Amongst other things I moved not once, but twice! We did a lot of painting and renovating on the house. (You can read a little about my home projects on my much-neglected Nestkeeping Blog.) Hoping to dedicate a little more time to that one in 2015 if time allows.

But back to sewing and quilting and crafty stuff.
It's usually so much fun to look back at the projects completed throughout the year.
2013 was awful - not a single project! - so 2014 had no choice but to be a little better.

2014 Completed Projects (I just realized I have a couple I never took photos of, so stay tuned for an update!):

2014 Complete Projects
1. Skully, 2. Strippy Runner, 3. Boo! Runner, 4. The Tree Lot Mini Quilt, 5. Holiday Mug Rug, 6. Red & White Mini Baby Jane

I decided to spend more time on foundation pieced pattern design in late 2014 and this takes an enormous amount of time but the results are SO rewarding!

The Tree Lot Mini Quilt (larger pattern to follow in 2015)
The Tree Lot Mini Quilt
Little Penguin Foundation Pieced Block (hopefully part of a whole winter block pattern collection)
Little Penguin Foundation Pieced Quilt Block
Boo! Foundation Pieced Letters (plans for the whole alphabet)
Boo! Runner Finished
Skully Foundation Pieced Block (a very popular one around Halloween)
(All the patterns are for sale in my Craftsy store.)

I'm looking forward to what 2015 will bring.
Happy New Year Everyone!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Large Print Scrap Busting

Start with some large print scraps and a couple of yards of Bella in a nice, warm gray.

Start making flying geese four at a time.
Get back to wrapping Christmas gifts because they're not going to wrap themselves!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Red & White Mini Baby Jane

Double posting this here and on the "That Quilt" blog.
I've been waiting since October for a nice day to take photos of this little quilt but it just hasn't happened. Winter in Seattle...
Today I decided to just go for it. Better photos can always be taken later.

Red & White Mini Baby Jane
The little quilt won 3rd place in the miniatures category in my local quilt guild's show. Pretty cool!
(For more information about the Dear Jane® quilt, visit the "That Quilt" blog or Google "Dear Jane Quilt".)

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Zig Zag

Feeling pink this morning.

Zig Zag fabric
Thought I see if I can make the heart blocks from the Sweet Hearts pattern with zig zags instead of stripes.

(The fabrics are Surrounded by Love Chevrons in Passion Pink & Ziggy Chevron in Peony.)

Friday, December 12, 2014

Holiday Tree Mug Rug

Tired of trees yet?

I'm waiting for an Insul-Bright order to arrive so I can make a couple of pot holders but, in the mean time, I figured a new mug rug for my desk would come in handy.
Holiday Mug Rug
I used scraps from the Tree Lot quilt. The block is my favorite block from the pattern.
Holiday Mug Rug
The border is Small Le Creme Dots from Riley Blake in Red. I used a tone on tone white fabric from P&B Textiles for the background. A little more interesting than plain white, I think.

I bound it using Amanda Jean from Crazy Mom Quilts' technique for binding tiny things. It worked like a charm!

(The mug is from Pottery Barn. I've had the set for close to 15 years, but I just saw them in the store this weekend!)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Tree Lot

I'm happy to announce my latest pattern, "The Tree Lot".
This is the mini version. I'm working on a pattern for a full or lap size but I figured that would be an impossible-to-finish project for most of us at this point in the game. This one is doable at 27½” x 30½”.
The blocks are foundation pieced.

The Tree Lot
You can find the pattern as an instant download in my Craftsy store.
(More photos and detail to come in future posts. It's really dark and dreary in Seattle this week, making good photos an impossibility.)

(Also, if you're wondering about the polka dot border fabric, it's the Small Le Creme Dot from Riley Blake in Red.)

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Wall Storage

If you're following Twiddletails on our brand new Instagram feed, you've already seen this, but I thought I'd share a little bit of detail on how we put it together.

I had been wracking my brain trying to come up with a storage solution for my everyday sewing supplies in my new, quite small, sewing room/office.
As so many times before, Pinterest came to the rescue! Solution: pegboard!

Since the standard size pegboard at Home Depot was smaller than my wall space, and I didn't want to "waste" it by covering some of the pegholes with thread storage, my sweetie came up with a solution.
We had a piece of melamine left over from another project. He cut it to fit the rest of the wall space and then put a frame around it all.

The frame is just plain old floor moulding from Home Depot. Less than $5 for 8 feet.
I painted it using a paint sample I had gotten when choosing colors for our guest bath. Since paint samples are flat and I wanted a little more "shine", I used some leftover polyurethane I found in the garage as a top coat.

It's around 3' x 4' in size.
Total cost - about $30.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Geese in the Forest Wow!

Earlier this week I received an email from Linda (click to see her blog), a customer who had purchased the Geese in the Forest pattern.
It included a photo of the quilt made by her group for a charity auction. I love the colors they chose. It sold for $2,500!

Here's what Linda wrote:
This quilt was made by a Lawrence, KS sewing group that calls itself "The City Sewers" (That's sew-ers, lol). Members are Georgann Eglinski, Carol Jones, Roseanne Smith, Deb Rowden, Linda Frost, Kathe Dougherty, Sara Chappell and Barbara Brackman. The quilt was donated to a charity auction and went for $2500(!).

(If you have made something using any of my patterns and would like me to feature it in a blog post, I would love to! Just send me an email. I will give you proper credit and link to your blog/Pinterest/Instagram.)

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Trees, trees, trees

It's starting to feel like a forest over here!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Sewing Day!

Today is sewing day!

I have a new project/pattern design in the works that I'm REALLY excited about.
It's foundation pieced. And, as I mentioned before, trees.

I recently found a new supplier for freezer paper and I knew it was good stuff but my expectations have been exceeded.
I made four tree blocks using one freezer paper template and I'm pretty sure I could have made at least one or two more before exhausting the wax.

I'm planning to redo the freezer paper foundation piecing tutorial some day soon but, for now, you can find it here.
It's my favorite method. No sewing through paper, no removal of paper afterward and, last but not least, much less wasted fabric than the traditional method!

Ooh! Another thing! Twiddletails is now on Instagram!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Black Friday!

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. There was way too much eating over here (of course), so today I think I'll burn a couple of calories sewing...
I don't post many store-related things over here, but I figured today could be an exception, since this is a great deal!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Scrap Time!

I know, I know. Many people claim that my scraps are not really scraps at all, but this is as small as I'm going right now.
In my mind, anything smaller than a fat quarter is a scrap. OK?

I have another tree project in the works.
Hopefully in time for the Holidays.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Little Penguin

Phew! After many revisions, it's out there in the world!

"Little Penguin"
I decided to try my favorite freezer paper foundation piecing technique on these tiny little sections and it worked like a dream. Lots of starching involved though. This block can stand up on its own.

I discovered a new freezer paper supplier and I really like the 54lb sheets. I love not having to pry pieces of paper out from in between my stitches!

("Little Penguin" is available as an instant download on both Craftsy and Etsy.)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

A Sneak Peek

The new pattern is almost ready to be revealed!
Just one more round of testing.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Holidays are Coming!

Between quilt retreat, Houston and catching up with orders, I haven't had much blogging time off late.
Working on a little design for the Holidays though. Stay tuned.

Thursday, October 9, 2014


Off for some girl-time.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

WIP Wednesday

I decided to go with the 3rd option in my quest to pick a border for the bright GFG. And I'm already questioning this decision.

Going forward with it though because I really, really, really, really want to get this quilt completed. So many other things to work on!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Border Decisions

All the "flowers" are attached to the Bright Grandmother's Flower Garden!
Next decision - borders.
I could use some advice on this...

I've scoured the web and came up with the following as my final choices
(The top border is cut off because I didn't think about borders when I designed the quilt in EQ7 and there doesn't seem to be a way to add rows to the top without redrawing the whole thing.):

The simplest choice and the one I'm leaning most strongly toward:

This one would lead to a very uneven border which, I think, would work great if I wanted to hang it on a wall but not so great for a useful quilt:
Too much green?
What do you think?

Friday, September 26, 2014

I Should be More Productive...

...but I'm having fun playing around with hexagon quilt layouts in EQ7.
Just posted this one as a free pattern in my Craftsy store:


I have pre-cut 1/2" freezer paper hexagons listed in the Etsy store and the main store. These make the process SO much easier!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Playing with Hexies

I've been playing around in EQ7 and thought I'd share a little layout I created.

If I made this I'd probably use these Bella Solids:

Thursday, September 18, 2014


It's a dreary, rainy day. Perfect for working on my Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt.

I picked out the fabric for the last 5 blocks this morning and have them all but assembled.
Only a couple more things to do, like attach them to the quilt, decide what to do about borders, sew the borders, layer and baste, quilt...

It's probably better not to get ahead of myself, but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and I think this quilt is going to be quite pretty.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Finish it up Friday

Everyone following this blog is probably uttering a sigh of relief. I was getting a little bored with the Boo! Runner myself but it's done! And I love it.

I have actually been listing my shop and pattern samples in the Etsy store off late because it makes me feel better about using store fabric for projects. This one I may keep until after Halloween though.
It looks so nice on the dining room table.
Because I haven't really been quilting much recently, I was a little stumped as to what to do with this one. Enter the old fallback - stippling. I decided not to quilt inside the letters at all. It makes them pop a little more, I think.
I also made a last minute decision to attach a hanging sleeve. I think this would be a very cute wall hanging too. As soon as I can figure out where in this house to hang a rod.
The pattern for the Boo! foundation pieced blocks can be found in my Craftsy Store. If anyone is interested in the size of the borders, prairie points, etc., let me know and I'll post more details.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Finally, binding!

As I suspected, things got in the way and it took almost a week for me to get to quilting the Boo! runner.
It also occurred to me this morning that my decision to work on only one or two projects at a time probably makes for pretty boring blog posts.
Anyhow, I'm fairly sure the runner will be finished today and I can move on to something else. Yay!


Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Boo! Again

Today I'm going to quilt the Boo! Runner - if nothing unforeseen comes up, which has been happening a lot lately.

Boo Runner
The foundation piecing patterns for the Boo! blocks are available in both the Etsy Store and Craftsy Store. The fabrics I used in the borders are Moda Essential Dots in Orange, Night & Day Paisley from Robert Kaufman, and Bella Solids 9900 99 Black. The letters and background are
Bella Solids 9900 98 White and 9900 80 Orange)

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Quilting Grandmother's Flower Garden

The end is in sight for the Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt top. At least, I feel like it is. I've been working on it fairly diligently.
I'm thinking about hand quilting it, since it's hand pieced but I'm the world's worst hand quilter...

Anyhow, research has ensued and I thought I'd share a couple of photos from around the web.

A popular method is to shadow quilt in each and every little hexagon. That's a lot of quilting!

 It does make for a beautiful back though.
Another way is to outline the "flowers" and the "sashing".
This quilting works well with grandmother's flower garden layout, but also with scrappy style.

There is a lot to be said for machine quilting too.

Decisions, decisions.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Organizing English Paper Piecing Projects

Years ago Brenda of Dear Jane® fame sent me a little fishing worm binder to keep my blocks in.
It worked so well that I ordered a bigger one for the bright grandmother's flower garden quilt.

The inserts are the exact right size for individual "flowers" and it has convenient little pockets for thread, scissors, etc.

As for individual, prepared hexagons, plastic embroidery floss storage containers work well for larger ones although I've just been keeping them in the binder as well.

I needed a smaller option for my ½" hexies. I wracked my brain trying to come up with a solution, then had a light bulb moment! If fishing gear worked for other storage problems, maybe there will be something for the little blocks in the fishing department of my local store!
Lo and behold:
I also bought one a little larger which will hold more hexagons in case I get really ambitious and make a bunch ahead of time.

The unmade hexies, templates, thread, scissors etc. are stored in the binder I originally used for my Dear Jane blocks.
The binders are from Bass Pro Shops. The smaller one is the Extreme Medium Binder and the larger one the Extreme Large Binder. You can get extra inserts for both of them. And I just noticed that they have a DOUBLE binder. I may have to get me one of those...