Tag Archives: tutorial

Tutorial : Making A Mosaic Art Quilt ~ Step by Step Instructions

 Welcome to my blog and to a tutorial that is picture heavy and is meant to HELP you make your own mosaic art quilt.  This tutorial shows you how to make a small quilt approximately 6″ square … but these methods can be applied to larger quilt ideas too 🙂

This tutorial will be divided into 2 general areas… Making the Mosaic & Making the Mosaic a Quilt!

PLEASE READ ALL OF THIS BEFORE BEGINNING YOUR OWN PROJECT 🙂

I am hoping my friend Lisa of Lisa Capen Quilts will also do a Youtube video process of this idea using her own ideas!  If/when this happens I will add a link to this tutorial here or she will add it in the comments below.  This won’t happen until August 2019 at the earliest though … so if you are excited KEEP READING!!!  This IS a picture heavy tutorial also 💟

First Item … This method requires 100% cotton quilting weight or so fabric for the confetti that makes the mosaic.  And making one the size I did doesn’t require much fabric… so save those cut offs from your fave project and try this out!!!

…Making the Mosaic…

1st step is to decide what shape you want to fill with confetti sized cotton fabric.  I chose this heart shape and added a wavy line to separate the center for fun!

What YOU need to do is decide on the shape you want to make and then google search that shape name ” _____ line drawing ” … so in my case I searched heart line drawing in Google and then focused my search from “all” to “image”… choose one near the top or change your shape until you find something you can have a heavy line too for the confetti… my line is about 1/4” thick and that is fairly wide for a line drawing.  Another source for your basic shape is a coloring book 🙂

Now you have YOUR shape… choose your colors for the background and the shape itself… as I mentioned above I imaged a 2 color heart and a color for the outlining … that means the background needs a color too… and you will need “grout ” or background fabric for once the mosaic is done… more about this later but ALL this fabric is to be 100% cotton mid/light weight (quilt type) fabric for ease of use… save  your glittery fabrics and slinky stuff for a project that doesn’t need ironing and you will be ironing this !

So you have a shape!  GREAT!  Choose the fabric base colors you want for each section of your shape….

 Now pull bits of fabric that are similar to that fabric so that you have 4 to 6 different usable fabrics that read as a solid or have a tiny print only on them… batiks works well but quilting cotton is fine also as long as the print is small on it and mainly tone on tone type of print like the ones below…

 Supplies needed for mosaic making….

  • Cutting Mat and Rotary cutter with manageable small see through ruler for using with rotary cutter…      OR Scissors and LOTs of patience (haha)
  • Fabric – 
    • 100% cotton quilting weight 4 to 6 each color of 2 1/2″ square or smaller bits in the same color family for each color area you are filling with mosaic shapes 
    • 1 1/2″ width and length to cover the sides for binding at the end (for my 6″ art quilt I had a 30″ piece)
    • Grout piece of 100% cotton fabric in a solid fabric preferably for your first project larger than your mosaic finished piece and Steam a Seam 2 Lite Fusible piece
    • 100% cotton batting piece larger than above grout piece
    • Backing fabric that is 100% cotton and bigger than your batting piece
  • Tulle – I chose a roll of 6″ wide glitter tulle but you can also find this easily by the yard in colors or in white which reads very clear in this project.  Choose as desired!
  • Steam-a-Seam 2 Lite Fusible… this is the BEST to use… I have tried others for this process and they are too heavy and not tacky when working with them so they don’t hold the pieces… get THIS type and brand to be most successful please 🙂
  • Steaming Iron
  • Tweezers of any sort but metal is best as they are most non stick in my opinion and this is important!
  • Piece of 100% cotton fabric to use as a pressing cloth
  • Piece of copy paper with your image printed on it (if making a larger than 8″ width piece go to your local copy shop for the printing to make it easiest and most accurate)
  • Non melting (such as glass head) pins… you want to iron over these once your mosaic is made before lifting it up… if you are unsure just test with your pressing cloth over the head of your pin selections 🙂
  • Hanging circles or ingenuity to hang your finished piece otherwise 😉

 Here is the specific paper that came on the double fusible I used (click on the images in this tutorial to enlarge) …

 Finally!!!!
Step 1 of the process is to prep your image for becoming the mosaic!
Do this by laying down your copy paper sized image on a pinnable surface like an ironing board… I laid a sheet over my ironing board to keep it safe from this craft project too but it would have been find without this step.

Outline the size of your finished piece… square or rectangle is best for your first one.

Pin a piece of Steam a Seam 2 Lite over the surface that is about 1″ larger than your defined lines all the way around.  See photo below…

 When pinning the Steam A Seam take off the top cover that is kind of awkward to keep on in the first place… this reveals the tacky top and well adhered backing to pin down over your image as I did above.

 Now you can see through the Steam a Seam to you pinned down on the image as below… fuzzy but seeable without a light box because you thickened your lines with a black pen before layering up… if you can’t see your image easily >>> take time now to thicken them up !

 The surface you have left open to air is very tacky and can easily be messed up… so if during this next steps of placing the confetti sized mosaic color pieces onto your Steam a Seam 2 Lite surface… be ready to replace the top piece of nonstick paper you removed and cover with your cutting board or other lightweight item that will hold that unruly nonstick paper on the surface to avoid getting pet hair, lint, or other stuff on your sticky topped fusible.  Hope this makes sense.

Beginning to make the confetti for the mosaic….

I like to start with the outline of the shape and fill in from there… this is my process… yours can be in a different order if you prefer but this works best to start out.  So my outline is dark red…

 I layered up my 3 different dark red strips and using my little ruler and rotary cutter on a rotary mat … carefully cut strips of the 3 fabrics all together at 3/8″ wide (see above) then turn the board or the strips and cut again at 1/4″ this time…

This gives you little rectangle shapes to start filling your line with.

 Now get your tweezers and alternating your fabrics place them on your outline of your shape.

 I didn’t cut enough so I hand cut a few more rectangles to finish the above shape outline… below is all that was left in non-useful shape sizes 🙂

 Now it is time to make similar confetti of your filling for each area…

 I had 4 yellow colors and cut more because I needed more in the red outline as mentioned above…

 I had PLENTY left over but it is better than not enough at this stage…. look at my yellow layout… the top and bottom of the shape are the lightest yellow and most solid reading fabric, next from top and bottom is a bit more color orangey yellow, then a darker yellowy color then finally a mustard with white and yellow print in the center… this gives you a mosaic fill that is deeper than using 1 or 2 fabrics to fill the entire area… so ponder this when choosing your fill fabrics.

 Next I did the aqua light blue side of the heart and finally the lavender purple background.  When doing this I make sure to leave room around each of my shapes and not to line up the shapes in different areas too much with another area… only line up within that area if you like it … but leave space as you will be placing this piece of double sided fusible with fabric on the tacky side you are placing now … on a piece of cotton fabric later for grout lines to be filled.  This matters!!!

 The blue went much like the yellow in laying it out… lots of variety and some left overs for sure… but the lavender… well I fussy cut some fun fabric I found in my stash and first placed the fish, the bird, the owl, and the mouse in fun places … then I hand cut all the fabrics I had pulled and I had the MOST variety in this color than the others… probably 6 or 8 different options to fill this background and I used a LOT of what I had pulled !!!  So be ready for that BUT have fun filling in each section 🙂

Now it is time to Iron your Mosaic… you will press with a very steamy iron per the directions on this specific product on the cotton or just below that setting on your iron.  BEFORE ironing replace that nonstick piece and I added the 100% cotton pressing cloth too… this is just a piece of sheet or fabric you don’t care if it gets a bit of glue on.  Once you have pressed well … LET IT COOL WELL!!!!

Once it has cooled you can lift it off the backing fabric carefully!!!

 It is thin and fragile at this point so go slow and careful to remove your artwork from the backing sheet.

 Now choose your “grout fabric”

Grout fabric is 100% cotton fabric that you will place this piece on that will show through all the little places you left uncovered with this mosaic process

Left is Light Grey…

Right is White…

I chose white… I layered my backing … then batting … then grout fabric on my ironing surface

 Then placed the mosaic fragile piece centered on this… replaced the non stick cover sheet and my pressing cloth and pressed and pressed and pressed per the instructions to get a good adherence with this step…

 And the mosaic is now ready to be covered with the important next step…

 Glittery clear tulle!!!!

 I bought a roll of 6″ wide tulle and laid out 2 pieces with a bit overlapping in the center… I plan to quilt fairly well but this tulle will allow your mosaic to be washed via machine and dried in the dryer if you like without losing it’s integrity after quilting is complete.. so for under $2 at Wally world I got the tulle 😀

…Quilting the Mosaic…

Now that you  are layered up I have found for a small piece no walking foot is necessary as the top is still a bit sticky under the tulle… so a flat solid foot is best like the one I am using on Cleopatra my Singer 319w 😀
I follow BOTH SIDES of the outline of your shape… then fill in your shape with close together lines and add some straight background lines too at regular intervals….

 I used white in my top and light grey in my bobbin and practiced on a piece before beginning quilting on my project… this is how the back looks where where you can see the quilting best at this point…

 Now it is time to trim up your piece… you will soon be adding the binding so no need to stay stitch I think.. but if you aren’t ready to add your binding don’t trip it down to size until you are ready…

 For finishing your project you need the binding fabric, a piece of your backing for a label or just write on the back of your art quilt… a needle and thread to sew your single fold binding down and your hanging method of choice….

Single fold binding is a bit tricky to deal with … if this is your first time doing it like it was mine on my first mosaic I did before this tutorial one… here are a few tips.

Cut your binding fabric 1 1/2″ wide by width of fabric … if this isn’t enough cut enough to cover the outside plus 6″ to 10″ more for joining.  Join so it is one long strip just like you do with double fold binding… all these cuts are cross grain from selvage to selvage too… this is not bias cut binding as our sides are straight.

Press your strip of binding fabric in half lengthwise… then fold one side of than in half again… this is prep work but soooo worth it in the end.  Let this cool a few minutes to hold the folds then unfold and start your sewing close to a corner like I did below but leaving a 6″ unsewn tail or so…

I sewed mine on using a heavy 1/4″ seam allowance… when I came to a corner I treated it just like double fold binding.

Once I came back to the beginning side I stopped after rounding the corner well… joined the ends in my favorite method and sewed the remaining seam allowance to finish the binding sewn the front leaving me with a the below shot…

 And now my pre ironed edges are coming into play making it easy for me to bind the little art quilt…

 So I decided a change of scenery would be nice… I brought my new fave pin cushion holding my binding needle… binding clips (aka wonder clips) … scissors for trimming threads… matching thread to my binding… and matching thread to my backing to sew my label down…. and finally a cuppa something yummy!

 And Tah Dah… I hand washed this cute little quilt then threw it in the dryer and gave it a quilt little steamy press… it was ready to share then 😀

 And the final back side…

I hope you have enjoyed this in depth tutorial … if you make a mosaic art quilt of your own and use any of my helpful hints along your path… please send me a direct photo to my email HERE to see your work of art!  I look forward to hearing what you think of this tutorial and receiving many works to my email too!!!

Linking this fun tutorial to Wendy’s Peacock Party Linky HERE << check out her Sashiko finish too!
AND
In August this will be linked to the Crafty Quilter UFO & WIP Finishes with Julie HERE

Tutorial: Bear in the Cabin Quilt Block ~ 14" Size

I am excited to share a tutorial for a quilt block I have fashioned…

It is 14″ finished size so these blocks currently measure 14 1/2″ square 🙂  They are fun to make and easy if you can cut accurately and sew a 1/4″ consistently !  Come on let’s do this …

First get your parts… I started off with enough to very light and very dark fabrics to make 16 blocks… I will show you my plan at the end of this post… for now lets focus on getting a block made though.  This photo is for each blocks points and the neutrals of the blocks background areas…

 While this photo is the mediums I had left over separated with the lighter ones on the left and the darker ones on the right… you can see their value more clearly when you look at the bottom half of the picture… in the black and white only…

 So gather your fabrics to make a log cabin.. I used the second photo of midtones separated as you need a light and dark for a nice log cabin and this one doesn’t have many layers so you have to make the layers you use count as I have.

Here are the cutting sizes for your log cabin blocks… you need 4 log cabins for each block.

I cut a bunch in each size (the white numbering is for darker fabrics and the black numbering is for the lighter portions… this IS important when you are choosing your fabrics! I cut enough for all the quilt blocks I planned to make plus a little if I miss cut or miscounted.  Then I pulled out 4 the same to lay out 4 complete log cabin blocks as I have done below.  I press as I cut and then press just prior to sewing for the most accurate sewing experience with these little blocks…

 I also chain piece starting with the center 2 same sized pieces with the dark on top…

 These log cabin blocks go together a bit differently than a traditional log cabin but give the right effect and this is actually easier not to mess up on… you don’t have to be concerned with clockwise or counterclockwise piecing… just make sure as you chain piece each piece on that it looks like the first one you pieced.

In other words… in the pic above you see all dark red fabric on top… the lighter square is underneath… I will press this set away from the center as I continue piecing these little log cabin blocks together side to side until all done… making sure they look the same as I feed them under my needle of the sewing machine.

Once the final piece is added I will press them all and rotate each one after the top left one a quarter turn to keep the dark 2 sides to the inside center of the block like this…

This adds interest and hides any imperfections as well! 🙂  At this point these measure 4 1/2″ square… if yours don’t look at your cutting or sewing … do NOT trim to fit … find the problem now !

Next we will cut the lightest and darkest pair of fabrics you have chosen for your block to make the bear claw portion and the background/center square 🙂

 From your darkest fabric cut two (2) 6 1/2″ squares.  Decide below the color you want your center square… I made mine the same for all my big blocks… you may want yours to be the color of your darkest fabric… whichever you decide… cut that one (1) 2 1/2″ square now.

From your lightest light cut two (2) 6 1/2″ squares to match the dark ones you previously cut then also cut four (4) pieces 2 1/2″ x 6 1/2″ and four (4) squares 2 1/2″.   You now have all the main cutting done!  Yippee 😀  Now I will share with you the Magic 8 way to make your half square triangle blocks that make the bear claws.

First match pretty sides together for each of your 6 1/2″ light and dark pairs… here you see I have 3 pair… I am making extra for my outer border (my personal plan is later on in this tutorial… I am sharing directions for 1 block not a full quilt in this tutorial 🙂  )

Once you have your pairs draw a line diagonally BOTH WAYS to make a big “X” on your blocks… now sew 1/4″ from that line on BOTH SIDES like I have done on the left… you need to be straight but if your 1/4″ if off a bit you are fine… there is wiggle room built in to this method 🙂  Once sewn then press the block well to allow your stitches to sink into the fabric and secure them.
Next slice like on the right photo… BUT cut first horizontally and vertically… THEN cut diagonally in both directions on the line you  drew.  I drew my lines with  a pencil because they will never be seen 🙂
Now as you pick up each of the 8 pieces flip them over so the dark side is up.  Like I have below…
Now it will be easy to press them open with the seams to the dark side… 
Now you need to trim your blocks to 2 1/2″ square… most of them should be straight on the outer side …. so stack them up with the dog ears all on the same 2 sides… 
I used a small 2 1/2″ x 6 1/2″ ruler to trim mine.  I used my fingers to point to how I lined up my ruler with the points of the block to trim most accurately at 2 1/2″ square… 
Doing it this way also eliminates the dog ears 😀 
Above is the waste… and below is the beautiful finished hst! 
Here you can see those hst’s once sewn together…

 So take a minute if you used directional print like my neutral here is.. to orient your backgrounds to be more consistent.  It is worth the effort to lay out all your pieces then put them together pairing them up as you go.

The photo on the left is a layout made just looking at basic layout… the dark bear claw portions are directional though… and once placed like I did on the right… MUCH NICER and calming to look at I think… what do you think???  Does it make a difference… decide before you sew these pieces all together with your 1/4″ seams … press often without steam too ❤

So go have fun putting together this block …. or like me make a few blocks and put them into a quilt… this layout is 80″ and I need 105″ finished measurement to fit my bed… I have decided that this arrangement together will be called Appalachian Delight as I believe these blocks are a delight to make…

And my inner border of hst’s … well they are getting done a bit at a time as I make a block I am producing 8 or 16 extra hst’s using that easy peasy magic 8 method!!!

I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial for the Bear in the Cabin Quilt Block.  My inspiration was this block which is a bit different.  I found it on Pinterest and shared there by the Stashing Sisters…

They were quick to get back to me but had no measurements to share for how they fashioned their block so I made my own design up with their inspiration block… I love it and I hope you find this block as fun as I do!

So have fun creating your own masterpiece and PLEASE feel free to post your questions or message me if you make your own right here… I would love to see your design/finished blocks 🙂 

So until my next post…

Disappearing 9 Patch Star Tutorial

I fell in love with a quilt block this week… the directions were sketchy so I thought I would do a picture tutorial showing ironing and sewing helps 🙂

This is a Disappearing 9 Patch Star … and Yes!  It starts with a 9 patch… I am making mine very scrappy 😍

The instructions I found online after seeing this photo…

Disappearing Nine Patch Star Quilt Block.

on THIS blog post from 2014 tells a better history of this block and shows some great scrappy photos…. but no real instructions on how… now I am a fairly good quilter so I figured I could play around and figure out my own way to do it… then I found THIS  blog post from 2013 showing this much less scrappy star block….

And it shows instructions using 5″ squares for the 9 patch block start…. 
I wanted to use 4″ blocks to better use MY scraps 😀
So here is my tutorial for a Disappearing 9 Patch Star using 4″ squares for your 9 patch start…
First decide how many completed star squares you want… if you use 4″ squares for your 9 patch your blocks will finish just over 10″ after squaring if you use a scant 1/4″ seam for all your sewing of seams.  I am planning mine to be 5 squares across and 6 squares down so a total of 30 squares to make a nice lap sized quilt.  I do plan to add a border or 2 to mine as well.  
IF you like scrappy and that is your goal….

 your first 4 blocks will look similar to this in scrappiness….

I wanted mine MORE scrappy so I did the rest in lots of 5 with no repeats of the red and blues… I used lighter colors on most of my center squares too but ran low on those so added some patriotic ones in there a bit too.  I made 30 piles of squares when I started.. each pile had:
  • 2 – blue 4″ squares
  • 2 – red 4″ squares
  • 1 – center 4″ square (I went light with mainly red cream and blue colors there)
  • 4 – white/cream 4″ squares AND
  • 8 – white/cream 2 5/8″ squares
So that was quite a bit of cutting!!!!

Once you have cut and sorted you are ready to make a bunch.  I made 6 at once after making the first 4 … now they all looked like this…
See how much MORE variety I got making more blocks at a time???
So here are my helpful hints on piecing this block….
Make your 9 patch block setting your red blocks opposite and your blue blocks opposite…

 (HINT:  Make sure you have NO REPEATS in your bundle of blocks you are making at once to mix and match… this is important to a scrappy finish)

Press with a hot iron BACK first to keep seams going as below… then turn over and press from the front to avoid any tucks or pleats …

 Cut into 4 pieces with 2 cuts….  (HINT:  DO NOT disturb your block until both cuts have been made for the most accurate finish… use a smaller mat and rotate or move yourself around if need be):

 Here is my sets of blocks lined up ready to sew on the 2 5/8″ blocks for the flip and sew corners….

 Here I am now sewing the flip and sew corners.  I ironed mine in half and followed the valley side of the pressed block.  You could instead mark a pencil/pen line across the square… (HINT:  Sew just to the right of your mark or valley by a thread to leave potential space for thread and fabric to fold over).

 Here are all of a block with flippy corners sewn on both sides properly… Make sure you are sewing your flippy corners on right to make a star! lol

 Now cut off the excess leaving a scant 1/4″ or so ….

 Press open careful not to distort these bias edges now 🙂

 Next is up to you … the first blog post I shared the lady sewed halves together for a LONG time before joining… I like that way best too I think for a scrappy finish.  Here are 2 scrappy halves…

 Once sewn together open the center most seam so that all your seams open in a different direction.

 Here is a close up of that center seam opened….

 By doing this … you make it easy to join your blocks without sashing…. and you have nice areas once joined for some fancy stitching when quilting it too!

And you have nice areas once joined for some fancy stitching when quilting it too!  For now imagine what you would want stitched in those open areas from looking at these stars on my design wall!
Please feel free to leave a comment if this tutorial has been helpful to you and if this block interests you like it does me!  I love trying something different and fun and patriotic too 😀
Have a blessed day and don’t forget to…

Happy July y’all and a stencil tutorial !!

What a Historic Month we are in now!!!

Image result for July Y'all

July 4 is actually my birthday 💖…

and when we celebrate our Independence as a Nation here in the USA so….

Today… July 6 is also my Gaga’s birthday… she passed away in 2004 but is fondly remembered each July 6… just 2 days after mine!  I like to think we look a bit alike too 😀
Here is a Birthday wish someone left me on Facebook… 
for me and my Gaga and you if you have a July birthday too!!!!
Isn’t this a cool mix of applique 😀
Here are a few of my birthday goodies I got…
First from my LQS…
Then I woke on the 4th to find this from my honey 🙂 

 My post for my facebook friends from a photo I took on our property 🙂

And if you look close.. there is a flag waving far off… that is our post office!!! lol

Here is a current photo of me… with a tag I added on Facebook 😀 
And HERE …. I   I   I   I
                       V  V  V  V
are the photos of the divided caddy I made for my friend Debbie I told you about in my last blog post…She received this yesterday in the mail so I was so excited to share it with you!

It has pockets added to each end for keys and cell phone when she is on the move with her stuff!  She loves bright colors and pink and yellow are faves as well as green… I used from my stash only for this … the handles are black wide ribbon from my stash too!!!  The insides are also covered in matte vinyl fuse like the one I made for my honey to use for his shaving gear… this one is a bit bigger and much more sturdy though in it’s construction 😀  I am well pleased… this is made by a video on YouTube by Sewspire 😀  Andrea makes making this very easy to understand too!  
Before the tutorial… I want to share my progress on the quilt I am hand quilting!!!!  I am linking this hand quilting goodness on Sunday to Kathy’s Slow Stitching Sunday post … HERE (had computer issues so didn’t link up until 5:30 pm EST USA … sorry!)  Go see Kathy and Congratulate her as she enters her 7th year as a Sunday slow stitch linky boss 😀
I am about 57% completed with the hand quilting in these photos…

 And  here you can see what I am doing in the star blocks with the chalk lines I follow then spritz away the residue of chalk when I have stitched the wavy lines ….

Above you can also see how I am big stitching the swirlies in the sashings…. using a black perle cotton 12 wt.
The swirlies are from a stancil that is a bit LONGER than the space I had to fill … soooooo

This is how you make a stencil fit YOUR space <<< TUTORIAL

Here is my stencil over the sashing… see how the sashing is about 1/4″ shorter on each end than the stencil?? 
While in the above position… mark the center parts of the stencil… but not the outer parts of the swirlie or whatever your design is… that way the center parts are centered!
Then below you will move each end to the desired spot and line up with the lines already marked… I am using a water soluble marker for my marking…

Here is a closer up view… I am marking the other end now… the stencil does not have to stay straight on the sashing but the end you are marking must be right in place!  mark carefully 😀 
 Now that all parts of the stencil are marked… it is time to fill in the “legs”… the legs are the parts where the stencil is held to the base and left gaps in your swirlie! 🙂

 Now you can see my swirlie marked well… downsized to fit my sashing with legs filled in too!

Feel free to click on any of these photos to enlarge them to see those blue lines more clearly… and scroll back up to see the stitched and spritzed away markings of my sashings… 
Another consideration I realized after marking the first row of this stencil was the orientation of the swirlies… so I put the center loops facing my blue blocks on all my swirlie designs for consistency… just a thought for your stencil marking too 😀
Now a look at our Lazy Daisy homestead and future and present harvesting…
First here are some not yet ready peach, apple, grape, and blueberry!
And here are some ready to enjoy squash and tomatoes from our garden 😀 

Here is a crane we have seen several days recently…

And a closer up view of the sandhill crane… native to this area a friend who lives here told us 🙂

 Love these vibrant fuscia / purple conical blooms on this bush!
 And a corkscrew willow in full glory!
A look back at our home sweet home… 
And the grist mill and edge of the pond where we often stand to feed the fish their high protein floating food 🙂 
And a look from the other side of the pond toward the back of our home… 
And the back porch with the blooming hostas all in a row! 
We finally finally got a North Carolina tag for our Cassie… she is legal and so are we… now true North Carolinians and happy to be that! 

And in closing…

A bit of patriotic quilty inspiration I saw online this week!!! 
A Very inspirational saying to add to your thought process today as you leave this post and do your own thing… 
A wish from me and my honey to you and your household ❤ 
Thanks for visiting !!! Have a blessed weekend 🙂

Making good progress here on my Colorful Whole Cloth Quilt and MORE!

Happy Slow Stitching Sunday to you all!!!  I am happy to be linking up magnanimous progress today at Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitching Sunday Celebration day… check out all the linkers HERE 😀

Before I share my AWESOME progress this week I wanted to share this Needle Nanny  / Needle Minder / Needle Keeper Notion that so many of you asked about last week.  This one was gifted to me by a great friend…. but I have made them as well since receiving this one!

Here is how it works with craft magnets on either side of the quilt and attached to a flat backed bauble of your choosing.  I have even added a craft magnet to a magnet… just make sure you put happy sides together before adding hot glue ! lol

Glue the magnet to your object of beauty then put a magnet happy sides together on the other side of your quilt … they will hold on to each other THROUGH your quilt sandwich!!!!  Tah Dah 😀  Hope this helps you make or to at least understand how they work!  I also use mine to hold my thimble onto my tilted frame… keeps it from rolling off this way because it has the lip avoid the rolling! 🙂
This week I think I hadn’t made much progress until I looked at last weeks blog post and WoW!!!!
Here is where I am this week!
I started here just moving the quilt in my PVC frame….

 I did take a peek at how much was left and it was one more move in the frame to get to the cool border!!!!

 So once I determined how much was left I decided to make this quilt even more my own and not leave what I call the “honeycomb” sections open to be puffy once washed but to fill them in like this…

 Doesn’t that look sooo cool??!!!!

I did that using these items…

 I used my honey’s medication for his inhaler that has a convex top side to leave an indention on the quilt once rubbed in well…

 Like this … can you see!!??

 Then using colored chalk lead in my mechanical pencil I marked that indention… then quilted it …

Here is a section that is now completely done….
Here is the whole edge with the wavy outer border…

 And here is either side to see better is you like… I think you can click on the pics to get a big view if you are on a computer 😀

Here is where I am this morning though…

I hope you can see the circles I will be working on today… I have 2 more sections this size to do then I can move to a different side of the quilt!  Oh my!!!! Very exciting!!!

Many people have asked about the blue lines that come premarked on this whole cloth quilt as well… do they really come out after all that work… well go back and look at some of my shots but I am spritzing and erasing as I go so YES they do come out… but best to soak in the washer for a bit I think.. and that is what I have heard as well from other hand quilters who have done this sort of whole cloth quilt.

Here is a fun pic I made for a hand quilting group… maybe you will like it too!

So whatever kind of project you are investing your time in… use your own creativity to make it your own I say!!!

Here is a cute Solar Dinosaur we found at Dollar Tree this week!  It keeps me smiling as we make our way around our town…

And here are some blocks I have also been working on this week when I am not slow stitching on this quilt….

These blocks (40 of them ) represent about 1/3 of the quilt to be for us to use… it is going to be a cool quilt I think when finished but kind of a Bonnie Hunter style scrapiness to it 😀  Speaking of Bonnie… did you catch her Quilt Cam yesterday afternoon?  Check that out HERE on her blog post this morning if you are interested!!!  She is actually lining up to be near me tomorrow but the class is full and my wallet doesn’t have $$ budgeted for her this time… but hopefully once we are relocated closer to her neck of the woods I can catch a class of hers in real time!!!  Have you ever seen someone you adore in real life?  What was it like??  I saw Jenny Doan of MSQC a few years back… she is as adorable in person as she is on youtube if not moreso… I saw her trunk show and HIGHLY recommend you seeing her trunk show too if you ever get the chance!!!

As for facebook groups… I do have one…

We chat about hand and machine quilting and piecing there… It is a closed group so you are safe to share your hidden objects and ask questions or share advice and progress as you make it.  It is a small group under 100 people and I plan to keep it small.  If you are interested in being part of this style group then click HERE to ask for entry.  Right now I am asking what everyone plans to focus on for February 😀

I hope you have a blessed end of January and welcome February with open arms!  Make sure you …

along the way too!  Until my next posting… Happy Quilting!

Traveling ~ A Slow Stitching Tip and Tutorial :)

“Traveling” is a term used in slow stitching to sneak in the batting layer of your quilt from one stitching area to another stitching area.

I first got the clue on the best ways to “travel” while watching a Hand Quilting Craftsy video by Andi Perejda… she is a marvelous hand quilter and quite acclaimed at her craft as well as a great teacher!! 🙂

I first saw this video about 3 years ago and I have done LOTS of traveling for sure since then!  I wanna share some tips featuring traveling less than a needles length from where you are but rest assured you can travel a bit further… Andi can explain it better than me!lol  If you wanna check out her Craftsy class after seeing my tutorial…

So here is where I was.. the last part of a block I was working on…

The rest of the shots are close ups of the black diamond on the right lower side…

First… make sure your traveling area is 1 needle length or less from where you finished stitching…

Tunnel from the end of your last stitch to your new line you want to quilt like this…

Make sure as your tunnel to your next line of stitching that you feel underneath the quilt and make sure your needle stays in the batting section of your quilt and doesn’t want to the back or front of your quilt.

 Now I use needle pullers also known as hemostats… to pull the needle through as just a tad was showing in the photo above… so below I grasp the tip of the needle easily…

 Notice below I have now pulled the needle through enough… but it is pulled through just a bit further along than I will need.  THAT IS BECAUSE my first stitch will be a back stitch..

The first stitch should be a backstitch when I quilt it because it will not let that traveled thread get pulled and distort the quilt that way… so take a backstitch just prior to traveling or plan to make a backstitch where you travel to like I am here ….

 Here you can see my hemostat’s AKA needle pullers better… they are good at grasping that tiny tip of a between needle! 🙂

I hope this traveling while slow stitching tutorial and tips has helped you!  I am doing some traveling today myself and still working on this same quilt! lol

Please feel free to ask questions 🙂  Linking this post to Kathy’s Slow Sunday Stitching Party HERE 🙂

Thanks for visiting and remember…

Getting over a hand quilting hump :)

Welcome Ya’ll!  It is RAINING here on Florida’s east coast as I write this post… we don’t typically get much rain in the winter… so it is sooo soothing and refreshing to have a nice rain!!!

I know many who read this may be dealing with bone chilling cold… or if you are below the equator… summertime heat waves and fires… I pray for each of you and hope you will return that favor by leaving a comment today and praying for me as well!

When I shared with you on Wednesday I had just hit the halfway point in my Fall Wall Hanging… but it was slow moving because this block was coming up…

I am linking this post to Kathy’s Slow Stitching Sunday linky HERE…. hope you will come see what everyone is stitching today 🙂

So when I got to this block … I still had no firm plan for the center… behind that cool embroidery is thick stabilizer that I couldn’t remove as the stitching is so busy… I trimmed what I could before adding it to the quilt 😉  But I wondered how it would stitch up!

Well I worked through the smaller blocks until I reached this bigger block and took a deep breath and thought about it….

AFTER stitching around the pumpkin itself and the entire embroidery design it became clear I needed a good solid base for this floating pumpkin to hold it down…  Crosshatching worked perfectly!!!

To mark this block I used this pencil by CLOVER…

It says it is water soluble… but i had never used it to make sure.. I tested a small area before marking my whole block and it did wipe off quite easily once wet… so away I went!

Before I knew it the pumpkin block was all finished and it was time to decide on the color of the leaf border I had already decided on for the grey border on 2 sides of this block…

With the help of friends.. and real life experience… I decided on the black variegated to grey Valdani 12 wt thread…

I stopped for a pic at the halfway point to make sure it would show up properly when photoed… I LOVE this thread!

 And here is the block I completed yesterday 🙂

I got so excited I started working feverishly on the blocks surrounding this one but really wanted to view this block without the remaining white marks… so I thought I would show you HOW I DO IT!

First get a spray bottle you can fill with water.. plain tap water works fine.. and spritz your entire block while it is laying flat to absorb that water into the batting a bit..

I let this sit about 5 minutes or so then got a nubby rag and started wiping the marks away….

Once it dried… even though when wet I could see them … the marks were all gone… I expect when I wash it with soap and water in the washer when finished all residual remains of this pencil I am using will be gone 🙂  Yipeee!!!!

Also this week I have participated in a BOM.. it is properly called #WDBOM2016!  You can find details on Wendy’s blog HERE… Wehago Designs Block of the Month 2016 is what the hashtag is short for though 🙂

I sooo enjoyed making this BOM .. it was fun walking down memory lane from the quilts I have made to choose these fabrics…. these fabrics were leftovers from Kimber’s Memory Quilt… the bright fun blue is vintage fabric and didn’t make her quilt… but I had pulled and had hoped to use it there so I used it here instead 🙂  Yay!

I also found out there was a need for 12″ finished 9 patch blocks for fire victims from brush fires in Australia… one lady name Shari is collecting these blocks and will make quilts from them … I sent these 4…

I didn’t crop this shot because I wanted to show off a bit of the vintage bunting Wendy made me and now hangs over my design wall… and you can see a fun disappearing 4 patch block I made up too!  (Next to my 9 patch in the bottom half of the pic!)

Well .. I want to make good slow stitching progress today… only 9 little blocks to stitch before the center is complete on this wall hanging!!!  Yay 🙂  Join us over at Kathy’s.. follow the link above ! 🙂

Until my next post please remember to handle your life with care as…

Stencils and Hand Quilting with them ~ Tutorial

Today on facebook I posted this picture of hand quilting I am currently working on …

It spawned several comments and questions.. so I thought I would do a blog post all about it to share with you all 🙂

This is the stencil I am using.. I bought it at JoAnne’s in their miniscule quilting section I think…

As you can tell it is a string of butterflies.. 🙂  I needed a stencil 3″ wide for this wider sashing on a quilt I am working on…

So try to choose a Continuous line stencil .. most are made that way these days anyway! lol

You can view and purchase templates online and Stencil Company or Stencils International company… or you may find some at Joanne’s and occasionally in quilt shops… but I rarely find anything but most common there unfortunately…

So decide what you are marking with and trace it out on a sheet of paper if the path you should go to make it “continuous” is not obvious…

So above is this stencil traced out with my blue Mark-Be-Gone water soluble pen… with the stencil laying beside it…

See these openings where I didn’t draw??

Those are “legs” and keep the template in 1 piece with giving you the ending of a continuous stitch design…

Here is a close up of the stencil.. check out those Legs! lol

I have only highlighted some of the legs here… but notice the black arrow in BOTH of the above shots.. that makes this one tricky to figure out… so do this..

After you trace your stencil go back with the same device for marking you already used and fill in the “legs”..

Above are my quilting lines to keep it continuous and avoid traveling 🙂

This tutorial was made for some of my fave fb groups… because it was popular there I am sharing with…
Kelly at My Quilt Infatuation.. Needle and Thread Thursday AKA NTT… Here🙂
Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict (and she really is!!! lol)….  HERE 🙂
and Happy Thanksgiving Canada at Kathy’s Quilts… Slow Sunday Stitching … HERE 🙂

Here is a cutie I found in an Australian’s fb page I follow…

You see it is Spring “Down Under”.. their seasons are opposite ours 😉

“Charm Dance” ~ Designed and Quilted by Wendy Gontier

Speaking of Australian Best Friends… I have the best one!!! And she recently did a YOUTUBE video about hand sewing down the binding on a quilt… GO HERE >>>> Wendy Gontier  <<<<<  To watch it… leave a comment or hit the thumbs up and subscribe to her channel if you like it.. she is an EXCELLENT teacher too!!!
But I loved it and wanted to share it with you all… I do hope the ups and downs of daily life… are mainly with needle and thread this season 🙂

Until my next post.. PINK POST STILL IN THE WORKS!!!! lol

Piecing a double pinwheel block pattern

Welcome to my tutorial on how to make a double pinwheel block that will look like this…

And a lot of them that will give you this overall pattern if set square…

This block would be extra fun set on point though… and a fun block it has been for me to learn precise piecing…

If you haven’t quilted before you CAN do this… but learn from an expert and watch qnntv.com Quilty with Mary Fons or beg your local quilt guild to help you… you will find your style as you create quilts for those you love!

Okay… now onto the fun 🙂

Gather your supplies….

Sewing machine & Scissors
Iron & Board
Rotary cutter & Mat
Rulers of all kinds 🙂
Fabric & Thread made for machine quilting
                (30 to 50 wt.. no lighter is recommended for a sturdy quilt)

And the supplies for this block….

fabric yardage is one main color for your background (mine is white)
fabric in 2 contrasting colors (mine is green and blue)
small ruler for rotary cutting
rotary cutter
snip scissors (mine are baby ginghers and they are super sharp!
and….
watch this vid to see how these half square triangles (hst’s) come together 🙂  just 5 minutes!

Let’s put this block together!

Cut your fabric to the desired size of the finished block… for mine my finished size is 9 1/2″… so my fabric squares wound up being…
4 1/2″ square 1 background color and 1 small pinwheel color and 2 large pinwheel color = 4 squares
2 7/8″ squares in background color = 8 squares

I played with scraps until I found a size I liked… then measured the hst pairs and cut my 8 squares a little larger to give the block a little room for moving…. thus the magic 7/8″ measurement even though my square measured 3/4″.

With your pieces cut it is time to sew together your large squares as I have them paired above so you end up with a small pinwheel and a larger pinwheel… put right sides together and sew 1/4″ from the edge all the way around… then they will look like this…

 Now press those squares to relax the thread and slice them as in the video criss cross like this…

Ta dah!  You have your 8 hst’s in no time!
Now lets get those hst’s ready to work for us by prepping them 🙂

 First press them open and PRESS TO the dominant pinwheel color… so when I set them on my pressing board I just put them that dominant color up so blue is up 🙂  Run the iron over them and whalahhh!

 8 triangles and some good snips are next.  I use little ginghers I got with a coupon at Joann’s but just a sharp good cutting pair for fabric only works 🙂  Now snip off all the dogears to decrease the bulk… this is important …

 That bulk adds up over a quilt so remove it now…
Now set out your pinwheels and bring in your 8 background fabric squares to make this arrangement… or another if you choose… you have lots of options playing around with the hst’s you have made…

 Now it is time to start sewing them together…

Start by completing the center… the block goes together best if you watch this vid on putting together the middle pieces.

As per the vid start by laying sewing together these pieces….

Sew them together with a 1/4″ seam and butted close to each other chain piecing style…. so they look like this when you are done…

You can butt them right up next to each other too… I just like to have a little give in mine… lol
Press the freshly sewn edges and open up the squares to make rectangles and close them right sides together on each other as in the vid like this….

Pull them tight and go with which way the seam wants to naturally go so that your seam allowances are opposite… that part is critical to an unbulky block.

Sew with a 1/4″ seam and Press the freshly sewn seam…
Next trim all your strings from sewing and clip the joining thread where all the squares meet as outlined in the video… this is the BEST way I have found.

Now finally you can Press all your seams in the direction you sewed them.  So they lay down nice and flat like this.  Make sure you fluff out the center so it spreads out like a mini pinwheel or else the middle of your pinwheel will be standing up! lol

And the front side looks like this…

Next we will chain piece the outside blocks together in pairs first then to each other or this main block.  Specifically we will do it like this…

 So above we are joining by folding to the left from your board to the sewing machine with 1/4″ seams each pair above… then Press the freshly sewn seams on your ironing board…

 With those sewn together now it is time to chain piece the larger units so first sew the centerpiece and the left side unit together and continue with the 2 top pieces and 2 bottom pieces.  Finally come bring the centerpiece back to the sewing machine on the chain and add the right side unit.  Almost there… 

 Press the freshly sewn seams everywhere… and you will have a strip that looks like this with the long top unit and long bottom unit left to sew on… sew them on making sure your seams remain opposite each other.

 Finally you are ready for the final press… press all the seams the way they were sewn…

 Tadaah!  You have one double pinwheel block complete!

My Plan with this block is…

To make 42 like in the group shot above and add a border to finish my quilt top… the quilt will measure 63″ x 74 1/2″ when complete 🙂

So this is my first quilting tutorial and I would appreciate feedback on how helpful or if it is too intense or not intense enough.

Thanks for reading and have a blessed day!

Kathi

How to applique… for a quilt :)

A tutorial by contributor Connie Combs… expert quilter.

Decide on your shape you want your applique to look like and cut out a pattern.

We did dophins that looked like this in pattern form…

This is the template they made from my daughter’s request and drawing… but in these fabric colors…

 And here is the quilt base with the miniature dolphin layout and the full sized dolphin cut pieces ….

Colored based on their place in the layout by Connie’s daughter Keely!

Thanks Keely!

She even left Connie directions for assembling to account for all the pieces on the right fabric! lol

So now on to the process of appliqueing…

Place fabric and stabilizer right sides together.

Pin in place and trace around each piece in pencil.  Leave 1/4 in seam allowance around each piece.

Remove the paper pattern and sew all the way around on the drawn line … DO NOT leave an opening. Now they are sewn together right sides facing each other.

 Trim the edges after they have been sewn together to 1/8″.  Then clip curves and corners.   Cut a small slit in the middle of the stabilizer side for turning… no larger.

Use a small crochet hook or knitting needle or something will a dull end to push out the tight corners and other points you may have in your project.  You can poke a hole if you use something sharp!

Next roll the edges out with your finger as Connie is doing above and finger press the fabric and stabilizer at the seams… then press on the ironing board… for stubborn edges Connie’s tip is to use a straight pin GENTLY she says on the right side of the fabric.  Getting all your edges finger pressed then pressed on the ironing board is essential to a good applique project.

The final result is 2 great dolphins… not on the black and green background yet but ready to sew on!

The contrast between them will be amazing!  Can’t wait to get the finished product and get to hand quilting it! 😀

Hope you have enjoy this tutorial.  I will be doing a project myself soon so stay tuned for that !

Kathi